Today I want to talk about “ehsaan” (احسان).
We have often heard this word in a setting like “oske mujhe par bohat ehsaan hain!” Or something like, “wo mere ehsaan bhhool gaya!” Kind of a dramatic example, I know, but this is exactly the most common way we have come across this word. Often with a negative connotation to it.
Ehsaan, my friends and sisters, is a beautiful, beautiful word and today I want to change your perspective about it. “Ehsaan” means to do more than what was needful. To go over and above the bare minimum and try to make that extra effort.
Allah mentions ehsaan in the Quran as a beautiful trait of the believer. Allah also asks us to do ehsaan with others, the first and foremost people deserving our ehsaan being our parents.
“Serve Allah, and join not any partners with Him; and do (Ihsan) good to parents, kinsfolk, orphans, those in need, neighbors who are near neighbors who are strangers, the companion by your side, the way-farer (you meet) and what your right hands possess: for Allah loves not the arrogant, the vainglorious.“ (An-Nisa’: 36)
Mohsineen are those people who do Ehsaan. The Quran mentions the subject of ehsaan at more than 66 places. The purpose of Allah’s Word is to guide us to be a better version of ourselves.
? When you pray, try to develop “khushu” by telling yourself you are indeed standing in front of the King of kings.
? When you meet your parents, be thankful to them, be grateful for the countless sacrifices they made for you and be kind and courteous towards them.
? When you fast, remember that it is Allah’s command that restrains you from eating and drinking. Bring to mind those who go hungry and thirsty on a daily basis. Be mindful of their helplessness.
? When you sit for iftar, thank Allah for allowing you to eat and drink, and make a decision to help those who cannot eat even when it’s iftar.
? When it comes to relatives, respect them more keeping in mind the ties of the womb that Allah created. Call them today, wish them a blessed Ramzan even if there are rifts and distances. Take today to mend those ties.
? When you give charity, give it whole heartedly keeping in mind that this is the REAL investment you make in life. Whatever we save we leave here in this dunia, and whatever we give in the name of Allah, we will find it with us in the next life.
? If you see a child, don’t forget to give them a smile. If you see a peer or elder, don’t forget to say Asalam o Alaikum to them.
Imagine a society where everyone strives for ehsaan. What a wonderful place that would become! Harmonious and peaceful.
The best definition of Ihsan comes in a Hadith, in which the Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, says: “(Ihsan is) it’s to worship Allah as you are seeing Him and while you see Him not yet truly He sees you.” (Al-Bukhari, Hadith No. 48)
Lastly, do ehsaan only and only for the sake of Allah, with no expectations of ever getting anything in return from anyone but Allah. Allah loves those who strive to do ehsaan. Let us start today!
May Allah make us of those who are mindful of themselves and their conduct. May we become muhsaneen and become one of those that HE loves.
Please feel free to share your thoughts on this beautiful, life changing habit.