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The importance of maintaining family relations

الحمد لله رب العالمين، القائل: ﴿يَا أَيُّهَا النَّاسُ اتَّقُواْ رَبَّكُمُ الَّذِي خَلَقَكُم مِّن نَّفْسٍ وَاحِدَةٍ وَخَلَقَ مِنْهَا زَوْجَهَا وَبَثَّ مِنْهُمَا رِجَالاً كَثِيراً وَنِسَاء وَاتَّقُواْ اللّهَ الَّذِي تَسَاءلُونَ بِهِ وَالأَرْحَامَ إِنَّ اللّهَ كَانَ عَلَيْكُمْ رَقِيباً﴾ [النساء: 1], والقائل سبحانه: ﴿فَهَلْ عَسَيْتُمْ إِن تَوَلَّيْتُمْ أَن تُفْسِدُوا فِي الْأَرْضِ وَتُقَطِّعُوا أَرْحَامَكُمْ﴾ [محمد: 22].

Praise be to Allah who says which translates as: "O Mankind! Fear your Lord who created you from one soul and created from it it's mate and dispersed from both of them many men and women and fear Allah through whom you ask one another and the wombs, indeed Allah is ever over you An Observer" (An-Nisa’: 1).  

It is the will of Allah Subhanahu Wa Taala in His Mercy and Wisdom and Decree that the structure of humanity be based on maintaining and keeping good relations with kinship on the basis of a family, from male and female, from one soul and with one nature.

The strong bond between the husband and wife, parents and children and extended relatives and the harmonious relation between them represents the community and the nation in its nature and structure, present and future.

Through this structure, the feeling of strong ties between the communities spreads, living in unity breeds solidarity and souls become connected, and hearts meet.

In such strongly bonded relations, and in an environment where kinship is maintained, noble characteristics grow and faithful generations are established.

Strengthening the relationship between kinship and relatives could be compared to the development of a plant's trunk, it becoming stronger with the command of Allah, so it is preserved and protected from external influences.

In The Qur’an, the rights of Allah and the rights of parents and relatives are mentioned together in many verses.

As Allah says which translates as: "Worship Allah and associate nothing with him and do good to parents, relatives…"(An-Nisa': 36).

Allah says which translates as: "And your Lord had decreed that you not worship except him and to parents, good treatment " (Al-Isra’: 23).

Allah says which translates as: "And give the relatives his rights"(Al-Isra’: 26).

In another position, Allah connected his rights with kinship or relations resulting from birth. He says which translates as: "And fear Allah through whom you ask one another and the wombs, indeed Allah is ever over you an observer"(An-Nisa’: 1).

Allah says which translates as: "Say  (O Muhammad) no reward do I ask of you for this except to be kind to me for my kinship with you" (Ash-Shura: 23). When the tribe of the Prophet Lut, (Alaihi Sallam) became less, he became weaker, he submitted an excuse by saying, which translates as: "If only I had against you some power or could take refuge in a strong support"(Hud: 80).

For that our Prophet Muhammad (Salla Allahu Alaihi Wa Sallam) said in the Hadith found in the books of Imam Tirmidhi and Ahmad: "May Allah forgive Lut, indeed he was taken refuge in the strong support, meaning Allah, but he meant his tribes and relative and Allah did not send a Prophet after him, but had a lot of relatives".

After Lut (Alaihi Sallam), the tribe of Shuaib said to him, which translates as: "And if it not for your family we would have stoned you to death" (Hud: 91). 

Allah blessed Muhammad (Salla Allahu Alaihi Wa Sallam) by saying which translates as: "Did he not find you an orphan and gave you refuge?" (Adh-Dhuha: 6). 

Ali, (Radhi Allahu Anhu) said: "Your tribe or your people is like the wing that you fly with and the base that you are connected to, and the hand that you fight with, and the tongue that you speak with, and they are the support at the times of hardship".

Be kind to the noble of them and promise and help the poor of them, and support the ones in hardships, and do not make your family or tribe the ones receiving the worst treatment from you.

The virility of a person and his manhood is represented in maintaining good relationship with kinship, doing good deeds, falling to mistakes that are tolerable and excuses that are acceptable. By maintaining good relations with kinship, harmony and love increase and the bond becomes stronger, hatred vanishes, and a person will always long for his relatives and family.

In the Hadith found in the books of Imam Tirmithi, Ahmad and Al Haakim, it was reported that he (Salla Allahu Alaihi Wa Sallam) said: "Maintaining good relationship with kinship, increases love between the family and a means of increasing wealth and keeping good reputation and having more descendants ".

By maintaining good relations with kinship, one’s life is prolonged, and sustenance and provisions is blessed and increased, happiness and prosperity become the natural consequence, and one protects himself from the evil ends.

Beloved brothers, if Allah blessed a person and enabled him to be the kind that is close to the heart who loves his family and his family loves him, he is soft with his relatives and close to his tribe. With this kindness, he will win over his enemies and protect himself from those who envy him. The favors will be preserved for him; his life would be easy in all its aspects. He would be protected from humiliation and the best of people are the most beneficial to people.

The wise persons realize that keeping harmony and maintaining good relation with family and kinship results in support, love, and protection from betrayal and disunity.

The person that is merciful, keeps good relations, and is generous; Allah gives a good reputation and remembrance among people in life and death. In addition, tongues will always praise him and hands will rise up in supplication for him.

He who keeps and maintains good relations with kinship and relatives, Allah will love him and people will love him.

People's nature is to love those who are kind to them. Did not, the bonds of relations say when it was suspending from the throne as in the Hadith that is in the books of Al Imam Bukhari and Muslim, narrated by A’isha, Radhi (Allahu Anha). The messenger of Allah  (Salla Allahu Alaihi Wa Sallam) said: "The bond of relationship is suspending from the throne", and it says: "He who keeps good relations with me, Allah will keep connection with him and who so ever severs relations with me Allah will sever connection with him".

Our Lord the Almighty said in the Qudsi Hadith that is in Bukhari and Muslim addressing the bond of relationship: "He who keeps good relations with you, I will keep connection with him, and whosoever severs relations with you, I will sever connection with him".

As the Prophet (Salla Allahu Alaihi Wa Sallam) said   in the Hadith that is found in Bukhari and Muslim narrated by Anas (Radhi Allahu Anhu), he said: "Whosoever desired that he be granted more provision, and his life be prolonged, should join ties with his blood relations".

O Muslims! From the rights of your family and relatives, is that you visit those who are sick, be kind to the poor of them, look after their needs, be merciful to the young, sponsor the orphans, smile when you see them, speak to them gently, and treat them kindly. So your relationship will be either in visiting or keeping good relationship, or inquiring, or looking after them, calling them, corresponding with them, being kind to them, exchanging gifts with them, paying Sallam to them with love, justice, kindness, humbleness and with supplications.

Respected brothers, the issue does not stop at this level, rather you have to keep relation with them even if they do not maintain relationship with you. Be kind to them even if they are harsh to you; be soft with them even if they say something insulting to you.

Prophet Muhammad (Salla Allahu Alaihi Wa Sallam) said in the Hadith that is in the books of Iman Bukhari, Abu Dawood, Tirmidhi, and Ahmad, narrated by Ibn Omar (Radhi Allahu Anhu). He said (Salla Allahu Alaihi Wa Sallam) "The person who perfectly maintains the ties of kinship is not the one who does it because he get recompense by his relative. But the one who truly maintains the bonds of kinship is the one who persist in doing so, even though others have severed the ties of kinship with him".

Yes, May Allah preserve and protect you for maintaining the bonds of kinship, forgiving small mistakes, covering up their short comings, and not exposing it. For who does not make mistakes? Wisdom, nobility, and kindness, is to maintain good ties and relations with your kinship, even if they have severed ties with you. To give to them those who deprived you and did not give to you. To forgive the ones who oppressed you, and to be kind to the ones who insulted you. The favor becomes greater and the person is elevated when you have a good opinion of them, justify mistakes that they made, and always find excuses for their shortcomings.

Listen to the story that is full of nobility and kindness. It was said that the daughter of Abdullahi ibn Mutayi said to her husband Talha bin Abdurahman bin Aauf who was the most generous at his time from Quraish, "O Talha, I did not see any one more evil than your brothers", he said " Why? She said, "When your wealth becomes more and your money increases, they start visiting you and stay around you, but when it decreases and you go through hardship they leave you". He said, "And this by Allah is from their generosity, they come to us at the time of strength when we can afford them and afford being generous to them and they don't burden us at our time of weakness when we can not afford them".

So, see how he justified their actions. He perceived their actions in a good way. This is an indication of a pure, kind, and gracious heart. This is a perfect example of graciousness and kindness. To interpret and justify mistakes of their brothers and relatives and in-laws in a good way. He disregarded and overlooked their faults with intelligence and this is kindness that is reflected from being loyal.

Relations with relatives and kinship, could not be maintained and strengthened until one disregards, overlook and ignore small shortcommings. For he who counts every thing pushes people away from him and he who overlooks  brings their hearts closer to him.

Kindness and nobility is in overlooking and disregarding others faults and the master of his people is the one who ignores the faults of others.

Where is this behavior in some people? Their emotions and feeling have died, and evil has overwhelmed them. They pay little attention to their family nor ask about their relatives nor are they kind to their tribe, and if they try to become closer to them, they push them away and if they stay away they forget them and become more degenerate.

To strengthen the bond with friends and colleagues they betray relatives and family. They are kind to those who are far and treat relatives with contempt or neglect.

Their kinship goes hungry and wealth is wasted on friends and companions. They consider small mistakes and sever relations and the ties of kinship for the simplest things  - a word that they might have heard or something that a friend might have said, or actions they have misinterpreted.

Servants of Allah, severance of relations between brothers or relatives   makes people deserving of the curse of Allah. 

Allah Subhanahu Wa Taala says which translates as: "So would you perhaps if you turned away, cause corruption on earth and severe your ties of relationships. Those who do so are the ones that Allah has cursed, so he deafens them and blinded their vision” (Muhammad 22-23).    

Yes, they deserve the curse, and punishment of Allah. They will not be able to smell the scent of paradise, which could be smelt, from a traveling distance of 500 years. It would not be smelt by a person who severs the relationship with kinship nor the one who is unkind to his parents.

He who does not maintain ties with kinship and continuously do good to and show kindness to his relatives, there is no good in him nor benefit expected of him.

Ali Ibn Al Hussain, May Allah be pleased with him and his father said: "O Son, do not start your day while you have severed the relation or ties with your kinship, for I have seen him cursed in the book of Allah, in three places", meaning the one who severs the relationship. "And he, who cannot be beneficial to his family will not benefit you, and he who does not defend them will not defend you".

So, fear Allah, may Allah be merciful to you, and beware of His punishment, and maintain good ties and relations with your kinship.

Allah says which translates as: "And those of blood relationship are more entitled in the decree of Allah than the other believers and immigrants” (Al-Ahzab: 6). 

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