Our Social Circles

A Heartfelt Plea

Our Social Circles

Mawlana Muhammad Imran Attari

Chairperson of Dawat-e-Islami’s Central Executive Committee

We spend a lot of time in social gatherings, spending time with work colleagues, relatives, guests, peers, and friends. Remember, these gatherings may be virtues or vices for you. Here are select hadith of the final Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّم and statements of our pious elders regarding this subject:

Good Gatherings

The Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّم said to Abū Razīn رَضِىَ الـلّٰـهُ عَـنْهُ, “Shall I not inform you of that foundation of Islam, through which you can attain the goodness of this world and the hereafter? ˹The first port of call is to˺ make it mandatory upon yourself to sit with people of dhikr (the people of Allah).”[1]

The Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّم also explained, “For a believer, a good congregation is expiation for 2,000,000 bad ones. Indeed, a man gains from a good gathering that which he could not attain in sixty years of his life.”[2]

The righteous Kʿab al-Abār رَضِىَ الـلّٰـهُ عَـنْهُ, said, “If people knew the reward in a gathering of scholars, they would fight one another ˹to attain it˺. This would continue to the extent every individual in a position of power would leave his post, and every shop owner leave their shop ˹in search of this reward˺.  [3]

A man came to Imam asan al-Baرَحْمَةُ الـلّٰـهِ عَلَيْه and complained about the hardness of his heart. The imam said for him to, “Attend gatherings of dhikr.”[4]

The saint, ʿAwn b. ʿAbdullah b. ʿUtba, رَحْمَةُ الـلّٰـهِ عَلَيْه disclosed, "When I attended gatherings of the wealthy, I remained constantly upset, as I saw clothes and modes of transport better than my own. When I sat in the company of the poor, I felt at peace.”[5]

Gatherings that cause grief and regret

The final Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّم said, “The people who sit in a gathering but do not remember Allah or invoke peace and blessings for His Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّم; such a gathering will be a means of regret for them on the Day of Judgement.”[6]

Mufti Amad Yār Khān Naʿīmi رَحْمَةُ الـلّٰـهِ عَلَيْه comments on this hadith:

Gatherings commonly include sins, like lying and backbiting. Yet, if they involve praising Allah and invoking peace and blessings for the Prophet, the former are forgiven through the blessings of the latter. If these good actions are not performed, the sins remain because nothing has been done to expiate them. A person is then at risk of being seized and being exposed to severe punishment. [7]

It is obligatory (far) for every Muslim to invoke peace and blessings for the Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّم once in their lifetime. As for gatherings in which the sacred name of the Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّم is mentioned many times over, invoking peace and blessings once is necessary (wājib). However, it is encouraged (mustaab) to invoke peace and blessings for him every time he is mentioned.[8]

By Allah’s grace, believers do not have circles or gatherings in which Allah is not remembered. When believers make a promise, they say inshāAllah; when they sneeze, they say, alamdulilah; when they yawn, they say, awla wa lā quwwata illā billāh; and when they receive bad news, they say, innā lillāh. In other words, they mention Allah on every occasion. May peace and blessings be upon he who warded evil away from humankind and jinn. May fragrant peace and blessings be upon the comforter of this Ummah; the guide for our lives, and the soul who filled our gatherings with the dhikr of Allah.[9]

Saʿīd b. Musayyab رَحْمَةُ الـلّٰـهِ عَلَيْه explains, “The one sitting in the masjid; it is as though he is sitting in the gathering of Allah. For this reason, he should only speak good.”[10]

Thābit al-Bunānī رَحْمَةُ الـلّٰـهِ عَلَيْه adds, “It has reached me that when people leave a gathering before seeking Paradise from Allah and salvation from Hell, the angels comment, ‘These poor people are heedless of two major matters.’”[11]

A pious elder رَحْمَةُ الـلّٰـهِ عَلَيْه once said, “On the Day of Judgement, those who collectively disobeyed Allah in their gatherings and those who aided each other in sin will be gathered. They will stand on their knees, then bite and scratch each other like dogs. These will be the unfortunate who left the world without repenting.[12]

Three actions to make your gatherings beneficial

The Messenger of Allah صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّم declared, “Beautify your gatherings by invoking peace and blessings for me, as your invocations for me will be light for you on the Day of Judgement.”[13]

The final Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّم once passed by a gathering from which sounds of laughter could be heard. He ordered, “In your gatherings, also mention that which brings delight to an end.”

They asked, “What brings delight to an end?” The Prophet صَلَّى الـلّٰـهُ عَلَيْهِ وَاٰلِهٖ وَسَلَّم answered, “Death.”[14]

assān b. ʿAiyya رَحْمَةُ الـلّٰـهِ عَلَيْه relays, “If people sitting in a trivial gathering end it with repentance, their entire gathering is recorded as one of repentance.”[15]

I make a heartfelt plea to all devotees of Allah’s Messenger! Evaluate your gatherings whilst keeping these narrations in mind. Attend gatherings of good and avoid those of evil.  Make your worldly gatherings a source of benefit in the hereafter too. May Allah grant us the ability to act upon this!

اٰمِیْن بِجَاہِ النَّبِیِّ الْاَمِیْن صلَّی اللہ علیہ واٰلہٖ وسلَّم


[1] Shu’ab al-Īmān; 9,024; Anwar al-Hadis, p. 403

[2] Firdaus al-Akhbar, vol. 1, p. 97, hadith: 587

[3] Iyā al-ʿUlūm, vol. 1, p. 460

[4] Iyā al-ʿUlūm, vol. 1, p. 460

[5] Iyā al-ʿUlūm, vol. 2, p. 853

[6] Jāmi’ al-Tirmidhi: 3,391

[7] Mirāt al-Manājī, vol. 3, p. 318

[8] Mirāt al-Manājī, vol. 2, p. 97

[9] Mirāt al-Manājī, vol. 3, p. 318

[10] Iyā al-ʿUlūm, vol. 1, p. 207

[11] ilyat-ul-Awliyā, vol. 2, p. 372, hadith: 2,614

[12] Bahr al Dumu', p. 185

[13] Al-Jāmi’ al-aghīr: 4,580

[14] Mawsu’at li-Ibn Abi al-Dunya, vol. 5, p. 423, hadith: 95

[15] ilyat-ul-Awliyā, vol. 6, p. 75, hadith: 7,846




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