Being Religious Doesn’t Mean that You Are a Good Person?

Assalaamu’alaykum everyone.

I had an interesting conversation yesterday. The Hadith says that the primary thing to look in a candidate for a wife (or husband) is how they practice their religion. But then, the person asked, what if the person is religious (wears hijab, prays 5 times a day, fasts, etc), but does not have good akhlaq (character and attitude)?

Another question raised at another time. Which one is better: (1) someone who prays 5 times a day but is a bad person, or (2) someone who doesn’t pray 5 times a day but is a good person? This question is just an example of thousands others of the same tone, such as “believing in God does not mean you are a good person”.

Never mind the answer to those questions. What troubles me most is why the word ‘religion’ is now associated with mere acts of rituals, ways of clothes, or empty claims that ‘I do this for Allah’.

I am not suggesting that rituals, way of clothing, etc, are not important. They have their purpose, but think about this.

Religion is all about faith, which is in the heart and conscience. It is from the heart and conscience where all choices are being made. It takes extreme ignorance to not realize that the religion (belief in Allah) comes inherently with good attitude and exemplary character.

As evidence, some authentic hadith mention (all nearest to meaning) that one does not have faith: (1) until he loves for others what he loves for himself, (2) while his neighbour is not safe from his mischief, (3) until he loves one another, etc (from assorted Sahih Hadith).

Islam is a complete way of life. Let us cherish and practice it as such 🙂