Islamic Values and Behaviors


By Umer Raza

I was asked by a client to develop and deliver for its managers and staff across Pakistan a training program to understand their organization’s corporate values. They also wanted these values to become a daily affair for them and that people start living these values. Thus the name of the program was decided as “Living Our Values”.

While I was developing the program I came across a number of ideas and themes. As I knew, what I wanted to deliver and how to translate these values into actionable items, I searched for some background into behaviors that were available from history, since all values can only be translated in our daily lives if these could be viewed as behaviors and are given some tangible action sequences.

For example “Trust” is a great value, and sounds like a great word. But what are those actions or behaviors that could translate trust equally well for people of different backgrounds. Saying the truth or fulfilling your commitment each time, can be a couple of examples of the behaviors that translate this value into action. Thus helping people to live those values.

While my search was on, for the program, I read the last sermon of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), delivered at Hajja tul Wada. The sermon is a great set of behaviors provided by Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) to live in the world. In this sermon our Prophet has given us a complete code and way of life. He touched upon all the important aspects of life in our day-to-day living. These behaviors if lived as they are can transform our lives. I used these behaviors and values as part of my training program to elucidate how values can be translated into behaviors.

I have extracted from the sermon and tried to give these meaning into values. While reading different parts of the sermon, I could find six values and/or principles of life. These six values were stated by Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) in easy to understand and specific behaviors. The names of values are given by myself, while taking care of the best meaning that could be extracted from the stated behavior. Some other names of these values could also be given according to one’s own understanding of the behaviors. However, what ever that name could be, the actionable behavior is important for us to understand and behave upon in our daily life.

These six values and their corresponding behaviors as given by Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) are

  1. Process of Success

Behavior as stated in the Sermon: O People! listen to me in earnest, worship Allah, say your five daily prayers, fast during month of Ramadan, and give your wealth in Zakat (obligatory charity). Perform Hajj if you can afford to.

2. Trust

Behavior as stated in the Sermon:

A) O People!just as you regard this month, this day, this city as Sacred, so regard the life and property of every Muslim as a sacred trust. Return the goods entrusted to you to their rightful owners.

B) Hurt no one so that no one may hurt you.

3. Accountability

Behavior as stated in the Sermon:

A) Remember that you will indeed meet your LORD, and that he will indeed reckon your deeds.

B)….Do not therefore do injustice to yourselves. Remember one day you will meet Allah and answer your deeds. So beware, do not astray from the path of righteousness after I am gone.

  1. Equality and Justice

Behavior as stated in the Sermon:

A) Allah has forbidden you to take usury (interest), therefore all interest obligations shall henceforth be waived. Your capital is yours to keep. You will neither inflict nor suffer any inequity.

B) …. an Arab has no superiority over a non-Arab nor a non-Arab has any superiority over an Arab; also a white has no superiority over black nor a black has any superiority over white except by piety and good action.Learn that every Muslim is a brother to every Muslim and that the Muslims constitute one brotherhood. Nothing shall be legitimate to a Muslim, which belongs to a fellow Muslim unless it was given freely and willingly.

5. Quality and Standards

Behavior as stated in the Sermon:

A) Beware of Satan, for the safety of your religion. He has lost all hope of that he will be able to lead you astray in big things, so beware of following him in small things.

B) I leave behind me two things, the QUR’ANand my SUNNAH(i.e., sayings, deeds, and approvals) and if you follow these you will never go astray.

6. Family

Behavior as stated in the Sermon: “O People! it is true that you have certain rights with regard to your women but they also have rights over you.





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