Neighbors in islam
“And worship Allah, and do not associate anyone with Him and do good to parents, and to relatives and orphans, and the needy, and the near neighbor and the distant neighbor and the companion of your side and the wayfarer.” (Surah Nisa, verse 36)
Neighbors are generally taken as those families or persons that reside in the houses near to you. If you don’t live in a joint family system, then your neighbors are more closely located to your place of residence than your relatives. Your every single act is capable of producing impressions upon the lives and routines of your neighbors. For this reason, in Islam, a very high value has been allotted to the rights of neighbors.
You all must agree to the fact that your neighbors are close to you in some way in which not even your relatives are close to you. At the time of need, the first ones who you will call or expect help from will obviously be your neighbors. If you have established good relations with the people who live near your residence, then no doubt, at the time of need, they will come to your aid without any hesitation. In addition to this, you and your neighbors share the same area and will have to interact frequently with each other. For this reason, it is very important that an atmosphere of mutual understanding and cooperation should exist between you. This is very important for the peace and harmony of your life.
Rights of Neighbors in islam
It has been mentioned by our beloved Prophet PBUH that:
“I swear in the name of One in Whose custody is my life, the rights of neighbors can be rightly paid by one on whom Allah showers His Mercy. And few among you know about the rights of neighbors. (The rights of neighbors include),Help them in fulfilling their necessities, give them loans, if they are happy greet them, and if they are sad, share their sorrow, if they are sick, visit them to help them and if they die, offer funeral Prayer for them (Namaz e Janaza) and be with them until they are buried.” (Tafseer Roohul Bayaan,part 5/page 530)
From the above instructions of our Holy Prophet PBUH, it can easily be judged that a great value and responsibility lies upon the shoulder of every Muslim in relation to the rights of neighbors. Till the day of buruial, you need to stay attentive towards the rights of neighbors, and this is surely an indication of a huge responsibility. In relation to the rights of neighbors, our beloved Prophet said that:
“There are three kinds of neighbors. Some have three rights, some have two rights and some have one right. A neighbor who is a Muslim as well as being a relative has three rights .The right of neighborhood, the Islamic right and the right of a relative. A neighbor who is a Muslim has two rights, the right of neighborhood and the right of Islam. The non-Muslim neighbor has only one right that is the right of a neighbor.”
From the above discussion, the importance of being attentive towards the rights of neighbors can easily be judged. So Muslims, stay attentive towards your responsibilities as neighbors.