Do you ever think about Jannah and wish that you could see your house?
Do you wish to live in Jannnatul-Firdaus, close to the prophets alayhimus-salam, the Sahabah radiallahu anhum, the Tabi’een, and the Saliheen?
If your answer is yes, then rejoice, because the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam has already informed us about our houses in Jannah. All it takes to reserve your house in Jannah is to follow three simple guidelines:
The Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam said: “I guarantee a house in Jannah (Paradise) for one who gives up arguing, even if he is in the right; and I guarantee a house in the middle of Jannah for one who abandons lying even for the sake of fun; and I guarantee a house in the highest part of Jannah for one who has good manners.” (Abu Dawud)
The three criteria that need to be met in order to guarantee yourself a house in the part of Jannah that you wish are these:
1) Give up arguing even if you may be right:
This means that if you are having a hard time agreeing with your friend, or your spouse, stop trying to shove your points in their face and just be quiet for the sake of Allah. This way, you get saved from saying something wrong if you are wrong, and if you are right, then your sacrifice helps you meet the first criterion of the hadith.
Imam Ash-Shafi’i said: “Never do I argue with a man with a desire to hear him say what is wrong, or to expose him and win victory over him. Whenever I face an opponent in debate I silently pray ‘O lord, help him so that truth may flow from his heart and on his tongue, and so that if truth is on my side, he may follow me; and if truth be on his side, I may follow him.”
2) Don’t lie even for the sake of fun:
Scholars have slightly differed regarding the issue of jokes. Some scholars say that if the narrator tells the listener that what he is about to hear is a joke, then it is okay to joke, so that it doesn’t count as a lie. But it is agreed upon by unanimous consensus that joking becomes haram if it involves lying, backbiting, or using derogatory terms for Muslims. Also, joking about Allah and the religion of Islam is not permissible.
Ibn Taymiyyah rahimahullah said: “Making fun of Allah, His Signs and His Messenger is Kufr (disbelief) and the one who does that disbelieves thereby after he had believed.”
3) Establish good manners:
This is an interesting point. It’s amazing how Allah legislated the criterion for getting into the highest part of paradise to be good manners. Someone who may have not heard this hadith before may have been thinking that to get into Jannatul-Firdaus, they would have to pray Nawafil, do extra fasts and give excessive charity. What if someone was not physically able to offer extra prayers and fasts? What if he didn’t have enough money to give extra Sadaqah? It would be very difficult for him to meet the standards set by Allah. However, out of His Perfect Wisdom and abounding Love for us, Allah has made the criterion for getting into Jannatul-Firdaus something that is simple and accessible to all. Anyone and everyone is capable of acquiring excellent manners if they try hard enough, whether they be male or female; young or old; rich or poor; healthy or sick. The reason being that in order to acquire good manners, you don’t need extensive scholarly knowledge, money, or excessive resources. All you need is yourself, the will to change, and an authentic compilation on the character of the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam. Once acquired, a good character is something that becomes a part of you; something you carry everywhere with you, just like your deeds. Securing the best character is not an easy task, but Allah knows our weaknesses and strengths. All we have to do is emulate the example of our Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam while making du’a to Allah to make it easy for us.
Allah says in Surah Al-Qalam: “And indeed, you are of a great moral character.” (The Holy Quran, 68:4)
In this ayah, Allah affirms the noble character of the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam. If we look to the Sunnah and see how patient, brave, loving, merciful, generous and righteous he was, then we would have a way of incorporating his character into every aspect of our daily lives.
On an end note, this hadith proves the immense amount of love that Allah (SWT) has for us. We often complain about how difficult Islam is, and how hard we have to strive to practice our Deen in the 21st century. However, the reality is that we have not looked into the essence of many of the teachings of the Qur’an and Sunnah. We think of commandments and guidelines as burdens rather than opportunities to earn the pleasure of Allah. By giving us more things to accomplish, Allah (SWT) is not burdening us; He is giving us more chances to be forgiven and enter His paradise. May Allah make us among those who incorporate the guidelines mentioned in this hadith into our lives and enter Jannatul-Firdaus. Ameen.