Keeping Good Company
It is very important for us as Muslims to keep good company and be careful about who we befriend. We read in a hadith that Abu Huraira (RA) reported that our beloved Prophet Muhammad (SAW) said:
“A man is upon the religion of his best friend, so let one of you look at whom he befriends.” (Abu Dawud)
We should remember that being friends with someone who reminds us of Allah is better than being friends with someone who makes us forget Allah. People who speak about our Lord and regularly mention matters of Islam in our conversations with them help us to remember our Lord. We read in the Qur’an:
“Verily, in the remembrance of Allah do hearts find rest.” (Qur’an 13:28)
We must remind ourselves of the importance of having friends that do not cause us to waste time. We may not realise the amount of time that goes by in conversations that are not important or do not help us better ourselves as Muslims. By ensuring we are in the company of those who do not engage in such idle talk, we will be aided in avoiding it too.
We ought to keep in mind that having friends that consciously or subconsciously stop us from sinning is crucial. They may consciously and intentionally advise us on something we are doing incorrectly. In addition, through them abstaining from engaging in activities that displease Allah, we also become positively influenced by this. Our friendship with them will clearly be guiding us to be conscious of our Lord. Our beloved Prophet Muhammad (SAW) said:
“On the Day of Resurrection Allah Almighty will proclaim: “Where are those who have a mutual love for My Glory’s sake? Today I shall shelter them in My shade where there is no shade but Mine.” (Muslim)
We have to try to be in the company of people who encourage us to worship more. For example, if we are friends with someone who spends more time in prayer than us or who recites more Qur’an daily than us, we will want to do the same thing. Perhaps they pray Tahajjud (night prayer) on most nights, or they do more for charity than us (financially or through service to the community). Surrounding ourselves with people like this will encourage us to do more good too.
Whilst having good friends, we should not overlook the fact that our friends are still of this temporary life. As happy as we may be with them, as much as they may help us to improve ourselves, we should not become so attached to them that we cannot imagine losing them.
This will cause us much sorrow as of course, we may end up having a disagreement with them one day or they may pass away. We do not know what the future holds. Somewhere down the line, they may do something questionable. We must remember not to believe that anyone is perfect, regardless of how practising they come across to us. Yes, they could be a positive influence on us, but every human makes mistakes – we should not judge others.