Haqooq ul Ibad refers to the rights and duties of one soul over the other and includes the practices of sadaqah and zakat. It includes being kind and being sympathetic to fellow human beings. This includes blood relations, strangers, fellow Muslims, and non-muslims. It encompasses the striving for others using our time, wealth, and efforts or energy.
Haqooq ul Allah includes prayer, hajj, fasting, Tawheed e.t.c. These are acts of worship or what you owe to Allah (SWT). Most of Islamic society debates and obsesses about them. This is mostly at the cost of the aforementioned haqooq-ul-ibad. This has allowed Muslim society to become more rigid and ritualistic in nature. By foregoing virtues of compassion, kindness, love and empathy, we have increasingly distanced ourselves from the human element of the religion.
A misconception that has been force-fed through generations is that fasting, praying and hajj are all that you need to complete requirements for our ‘ticket to Jannah’. This cannot be farther from the truth. This is due to the glaring fact that negligence in Haqooq-ul-Allah means Allah alone is the one who has to forgive you and He is Most Merciful. However, negligence in terms of haqooq-ul-ibad would mean you would also require forgiveness from the person whose rights and duties you neglected. This highlights the severity of the negligence of the rights of humanity and its importance in the sight of Allah.
What Does Haqooq ul Ibad Mean?
Allah is independent of rights and needs and therefore the fulfillment of haqooq-ul-Allah is a private matter between Allah and man. This means that haqooq-ul-ibad deserves urgency as humans are needy and dependent on fulfilling certain rights and needs. These rights and sense of social welfare are what formed the basis of shariah and are the building blocks for the state and institutions of Medina and later on the caliphate.
Hadith on Haqooq ul Ibad:
Basis of Human Rights in Islam:
This formed the basis of basic human rights in the Islamic paradigm. Islam accepts, acknowledges, and institutionalizes the fundamentals of rights to life, freedom, security, and justice. Punishments for social misdemeanors are therefore much more emphasized and punishable by courts e.g. theft, murder, slander, indecency, sexual assault e.t.c. The same, however, is not true for haqooq-ul-Allah where negligence, abstinence, and violation are spiritual and personal dilemmas
Amar Bil Maroof and Nahi Anil Munkar:
Another aspect of haqooq-ul-ibad is the concepts of Amar Bil Maroof and Nahi Anil Munkar. Which are the duties of enjoining the good and eliminating the bad not only from one’s own life but also more importantly from the Muslim community. Good conduct is another important aspect. The good deeds on the day of judgment will not be the only deciding factor in our fate. Rather our conduct and character (Ikhlaaq) and our dealings with others are what decides our fate. Our mischief and misdemeanor with others will result in our good deeds being paid to others that we dealt with poorly and their sins will be added to our accounts. This effectively highlights how our dealings with others are more important than our ritualistic practices. Our Ikhlaaq gives meaning to our worship and faith.
Rights of Parents and Relatives:
The Qur’an and the hadith have laid clear emphasis on the rights of parents, relatives, husband and wife, orphans, teachers, and neighbors. Not to mention the rights of travelers, the poor, and the destitute. Our treatment of our parents is by far probably the most important of all aspects of haqooq-ul-ibad. Our treatment of our parents decides our hereafter quite literally. Kindness, compassion, and obedience of our parents is the basic requirement and also the highest of ideals. To put it simply, negligence in the treatment of parents is inexcusable. The only instance you are allowed to disobey your parents is if your parent is ordering you to commit shirk, or a crime and go against the tenents of Islam.
You should also go through these 50 Islamic Quotes on Parents with Images.
Rights of your Spouse:
After the relation of parents, the husband and wife bond is the most important. The relation of spouses is to be covers and pillars of each other. To support and protect and be the best companion for each other. The rights and duties that they have over each other are not strictly unidirectional as is commonly misconstrued and presented. Rather, it applies to both partners. The basic purpose of marital relations is to protect against Zina and improve and strengthen one another in piety. After these fundamental relations, the rights of relatives, neighbors, teachers, orphans e.t.c are what form the basis of communal balance and helps in integrating society. Here are 100+ Islamic Marriage Quotes For Husband and Wife.
Today, however, the prevalent culture that has been instigated by Islamic scholars has seen a departure from this humanistic ethos and principles. Larger emphasis is given to legality, conservatism, fundamentalism, of Islamic thought and practice. In the larger context, the ulema has aimed to monopolize Islamic knowledge and therefore have pushed their own respective perspectives to the forefront while bringing down the other interpretations. One such practice is the branding of any view that remotely matches or resonates with the western world as ‘unIslamic’ or ‘kafir’ ideology.
Haqooq ul Ibad and Tolerance:
When the same ulemas and clergymen have considerable influence as lobbyists in the political framework, this leads to troubling results. One such is the degradation of human rights laws and protection. The importance of haqooq-ul-ibad is, therefore, more important now than ever before. This is true for all levels of society; personal, communal, and national. Haqooq-ul-ibad is the basis of tolerance, acceptance, and perseverance in the social fabric of an inclusive Islamic society. It is the same fabric as that of the state of Medina that was established by the Prophet PBUH. Do go through these Beautiful Islamic Quotes on Patience.
Haqooq ul Ibad and Healthy Relations:
All things considered, haqooq-ul-ibad is instrumental in understanding and establishing healthy human relations. The Islamic perspective on said human relations is as important as the relationship we have with Allah Himself. It is foundational that the respect and reverence we have for Allah should also translate to the souls and human beings that He sent on earth. Understanding this on a personal level first is key for better community building and further social welfare causes. This helps in curbing domestic and sectarian violence in the long run. Haqooq-ul-ibad is also important for improving and building piety as a heart that is mindful of Allah will not neglect fellow creatures.
The true meaning of Haqooq-ul-ibad boils down to its literal translation – the rights of the people around you. The term “people” is inclusive of everyone, parents, neighbors, children, etc. In Islam, great emphasis is put on Haqooq-ul-ibad as Allah can forgive Haqooq-ul-Allah but he will never forgive Haqooq-ul-ibad unless the oppressed himself forgives the oppressor in question.