The Qualities of the People of the Garden
Many verses of the Qur’an speak not only of prayer, fasting but also of leading a good life. Allah commands human beings to live good lives themselves and also to counsel others to do the same. In societies that obey the commands of Allah in which everyone leads good lives, a spirit prevails that is similar to that to be found in the life of the Garden.
Muslims are Allah’s devoted slaves. They want to please Allah in everything they think, say and do, and they act out of their fear and respect for Him. They never allow themselves to be tempted openly or in secret by any suggestion of Shaytan; they are pure in mind and conscience. And they go into the Hereafter with this clear conscience.
In the Qur’an, Allah reveals the purity of the Muslim’s spirit for which He promises them the Garden. He mentions Ibrahim (as) thus:
When he came to his Lord with an unblemished heart. (Surat as-Saffat: 84)
And He mentions the believers thus:
Gardens of Eden with rivers flowing under them, remaining in them timelessly, for ever. That is the reward of those who purify themselves. (Surah Ta Ha: 76)
Sincere Muslims live lives free of greed, grudges, jealousy and other bad qualities and their hearts are bound to Allah. They are people described by Allah in the Qur’an as:
… those who have iman and whose hearts find peace in the remembrance of Allah.” (Surat ar-Ra‘d: 28)
The glad tidings of the Garden is announced to them:
... for those who have iman and do right actions and humble themselves before their Lord, they are the Companions of the Garden. Remaining in it timelessly, for ever. (Surah Hud: 23)
Elsewhere in the Qur’an Allah says:
O self at rest and at peace, return to your Lord, wellpleasing and well-pleased! Enter among My slaves! Enter My Garden. (Surat al-Fajr: 27-30)
He invites His slaves, being purified in this world and having gained peace of mind, to the Garden.
The thoughts and actions of those who have attained these qualities that please Allah reflect the depth of their faith. Because they act out of their love and fear for Allah, every aspect of their being is good. This goodness comes from their faithful service to Allah. As Allah says in the Qur’an, they are recognised by the mark of prostration on their faces, and of course the mark of prostration is light in the face:
… You see them bowing and prostrating, seeking Allah’s good favour and His pleasure. Their mark is on their faces, the traces of prostration. That is their likeness in the Torah. And their likeness in the Injil is that of a seed which puts up a shoot and makes it strong so that it thickens and grows up straight upon its stalk, filling the sowers with delight… (Surat al-Fath: 29)
By Allah’s grace, their facial expressions are beautiful and understanding. Their conversations are pleasing to Allah and their words are always edifying. Allah says in the Qur’an that their words always produce good results:
Do you not see how Allah makes a metaphor of a good word: a good tree whose roots are firm and whose branches are in heaven? It bears fruit regularly by its Lord’s permission. Allah makes metaphors for people so that hopefully they will pay heed. (Surah Ibrahim: 24-25)
They are obedient, gentle, accommodating, open, sincere and warm. For this reason, they live good lives filled with love and friendship. Allah allows them to experience these blessings in this world, and in the world to come, He will give them endless blessings.
In many hadith, our Prophet speaks of the noble qualities of those who enter the Garden, for example:
What are the things that most ensure they enter the Garden? Fear of Allah and noble qualities of character… (Ahmad Diya ad-Din al- Kamushkhanawi, Ramuz al-Ahadith, vol. 1, p.12/8)
Our Prophet often reminds us in his hadith that we must “be just,” “merciful,” “patient,” “generous,” “pure,” “chaste,” “honourable” and “truthful.”
He also reminds us that, in order to attain the Garden, we must “be benevolent both in private and in public”, “speak pleasantly”, “praise Allah in broad and narrow straits”, “give sadaqah”, “seek knowledge”, “fear Allah”, “obey the Prophets”, “refrain from arrogance”, “maintain dignity in times of need” and “not resort to begging or shamelessness”, “be honest in business”, “be at peace in Allah” and “be benevolent for the sake of Allah and the deen”.
All these qualities mentioned by our Prophet are required of Muslims who desire to earn the good pleasure and love of Allah.