Good Character

Riyad as-Salihin (The Meadows of the Righteous)

by Imam Nawawi

73. Chapter: On Good Character

Allah Almighty says, "Indeed you are truly vast in character," (68:4)

and the Almighty says "those who control their rage and pardon other people." (3:134)

621. Anas said, "The Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, had the best character of anyone ." [Agreed upon]

622. Anas said, "I did not touch any silk brocade nor silk softer than the palm of the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace. I did not smell any scent sweeter than the scent of the Messenger of Allah. I served the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, for ten years and he never said to me, 'Uff' nor did he say about anything I had done, 'Why did you do that?' nor about anything I had not done, 'Why did you not do that?'" [Agreed upon]

623. As-Sa'b ibn Jaththama al-Laythi said, "I gave the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, a wild ass and he returned it to me. When he saw the expression on my face, he said, "We are only returning it to you because we are in ihram." [Agreed upon]

624. An-Nawwas ibn Sam'an said, "I asked the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, about piety and wrong action. He said, 'Piety is good character and wrong action is what is hatched up in your self and you do not want other people to know about." [Muslim]

625. 'Abdullah ibn 'Amr ibn al-'As said, "The Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, was neither obscene nor indecent. He used to say, 'The best of you are the best in character." [Agreed upon]

626. Abu'd-Darda' reported that the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, "There will be nothing heavier in the balance of the believer on the Day of Rising than good character. Allah dislikes foul language." [at-Tirmidhi]

627. Abu Hurayra said, "The Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, was asked about the things most likely to bring people into the Garden. He said, 'Fearful awareness of Allah and good character.' He was asked about the things most likely to bring people into the Fire. He said, 'The mouth and the genitals.'" [at-Tirmidhi]

628. Abu Hurayra reported that the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, "The believers with the most perfect belief are the best of them in character. The best of you are the best of you towards your wives." [at-Tirmidhi]

629. 'A'isha said, "I heard the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, say, 'By his good character a believer can reach the same rank as someone who fasts and prays at night." [Abu Dawud]

630. Abu Umama al-Bahili reported that the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, "I guarantee a house on the outskirts of the Garden to anyone who abstains from disputation, even if he is in the right, and a house in the middle of the Garden for anyone who abandons lying, even when he jests, and a house at the summit of the Garden for anyone who has good character." [Abu Dawud]

631. Jabir reported that the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, "Those I love most and those sitting nearest to me on the Day of Rising will be those of you with the best character. Those most hateful to me and the furthest of you from me on the Day of Rising will be the pompous, the braggarts and the arrogant.' They said, 'Messenger of Allah, we know the pompous and the braggarts, but who are the arrogant?' He said, 'The proud.'" [at-Tirmidhi]