Written Compiled & Contributed By:- S H Bangash
Imam Zain Ul Abdieen(a.s) who nearly 1400 years ago wrote the Human
Rights Manual like his grandfather Hazrat Muhammad(pbuh) farwell
Sermon Complete Charter of Human Rights.That is Why In this Essay both
sides of Pictures, “Human Rights in the eyes of Islam and West “is
shown and decision is on the readers.
The issue of Human Rights was raised by west in 20 th & 21st
centuries. Media debates on Human rights
especially propagated by west for their own wasted interests continued now
a days. It is proud for Muslims that Islam imparted Human Rights 1400 years
ago in form of Global Constitution Quran and Global mercy the Last Holy
Prophet Hazrat Muhammad(pbuh).Holy Prophet (savw) in its farewell Hajj
Sermon explained a brief or summary of Human Rights by presenting complete
charter of Human Rights. While the household of Prophet(savw) Known as
Ahlul-Bait(a.s) has explained all Treaties of Rights of Human Beings.
In this regard the Farewell Hajj Sermon of Holy Prophet(saw) is
best example with addition to this The Treatise on Rights by Holy
Hazrat Imam Hussain(a.s)’s son named Hazrat Imam Ali ibne Hussain also
known as Zain ul Abidin(A.S). Unfourtunatly neither west nor majority of
Muslim Ummah is aware of this exclusive work of Imam a.s.if any one or reader
interested then they can contact the website for Book “Treaties of Rights”
While for more details on this important topic treaties on rights and a book
called “Sahifa-e-kamila or sahifa-e-sajjadiya” writeen by Imam Zain ul
Abideen(a.s) is also present. Hazrat Imam Ali ibne Hussain also known as
Zain ul Abidin(A.S) was martyred by the cruel and dictator regime of
ummayid’s by poisoning on 25th Moharrum in the year 95 A.H. at Madina and
is buried at Janatul Baqi near his uncle Imam Hasan (A.S.) where the
shrines of Ahlul-Bait(a.s) were present for centuries but in 1925 A.D the
Takferi regime demolished the Holy places including Imam grave.To know the
cruilites of Wahabi Regime destroying Islamic Hertiage readers are
requested to vist this link.
On this Sorrowful and Mourning occasion of the Martyrdom Anniversary of
Hazrat Imam Ali ibne Hussain also known as Zain ul Abidin(A.S) grief and
Condolences to all the freedom-loving and oppressed people in the world.
The need of the hour is that every human especially Muslim ummah should
know this great work of Imam(a.s) by writing and mentioning all Rights of
People and Society “Treaties on Rights”, and it is the responsibility of
Media to highlight this great treasure and heritage to all living across
The Treatise on Rights
Among the most important works in the world of Islam is the ‘Treatise on
Rights’ by the greatestHazrat Imam Ali ibne Hussain also known as Zain ul
Abidin(A.S) . In it the Ima`m has mentioned all the methods necessary for
man’s conduct, developing his life, and building his civilization on
foundations which lead to tranquillity and protection from anxiety,
disorder, and the like.
The wise Ima`m carefully and inclusively considered man, studied all the
dimensions of his life, his relationships with his Creator, his soul, his
family, his society, his government, his teacher, and so on. He wrote for
man these rights and duties and made it incumbent on him to conform to
them. Hence man is able to establish an Islamic society which believes in
and has strong ties such as mutual confidence, love, and other means
necessary for social development and progress.
I (the author) think that the great Ima`m legislated man’s rights, his
social links, his moral origins, and his educational foundations in a
manner which is different from that of politicians and social scientists.
Any how, the Ima`m, peace be on him, wrote this brilliant treatise and
presented it to some of his companions. Then it was narrated by the great
religious scholar, the trustworthy Muslim, Tha`bit b. Abi Saffiya, better
known as Abu Hamza al-Thuma`li, the student of the Ima`m, peace be on him.
Then it was reported on his authority by the very truthful traditionalist,
Hujjat al-Isla`m, Mohammed b. Ya’qu`b al-Kulayni, and al-Hasan b. ‘Ali b.
al-Husayn b. Shu’ba al-Harra`ni in (his book) ‘Tuhaf al-‘Uqu`l’. I (the
author) have narrated it on his (al-Hasan’s) authority as follows:
A Brief Introduction to Rights
Before the Ima`m, peace be on him, explained the rights, he wrote a brief
introduction to them, saying:
“Know (may Allah have mercy upon You) that Allah has rights against you and
that these encompass you in every movement through which you move, every
rest through which you rest, every way station in which you reside, every
limb which you employ, and every instrument which you put to work. Some of
these rights are greater and some less.
“The greatest of Allah’s rights against you is the right which He has made
incumbent upon you for Himself and which is the root of all rights, then
those which He has made incumbent upon you in yourself, from your crown to
your feet, in keeping with the diversity of your organs. He has given your
tongue a right against you, your hearing a right against you, your sight a
right against you, your hand a right against you, your leg a right against
you, your stomach a right against you, and your private part a right
against you. These are the seven organs through which acts (af’a`l) take
“Then He gave your acts rights against you: He gave your ritual prayer a
right against you, fasting a right against you, your charity a right
against you, your offering a right against you, and your acts a right
“Then these rights extend out from you to others who have rights against
you. The most incumbent of them against you are the rights toward your
Ima`ms, then the rights toward your subjects (ra’iyya), then the rights
toward your womb [relatives] (rahim).
“From these rights branch out other rights. The rights of your Ima`ms are
three: The most incumbent upon you is the right of him who trains you
through authority, then of him who trains you through knowledge, then of
him who trains through property.
“The rights of your subjects are three: The most incumbent upon you is the
right of those who are your subjects through authority, then the right of
those who are your subjects through knowledge(for the man of ignorance is
the subject of man of knowledge(then the right of those who are subjects
through property, such as wives and what is owned by your right hand.
“The rights of your womb relatives are many; they are connected to you in
the measure of the connection of the womb relations. The most incumbent
upon you is the right of your mother, then the right of your father, then
the right of your child, then the right of your brother, then the next
nearest, then the next nearest(the most worth, then the next most worthy.
“Then there is the right of your master who favors you (by freeing you from
slavery), then the right of the slave whose favors reach you (by the fact
that your free him), then the right of him who does a kindly act toward
you, then the right of the mu’azzin who calls you to the ritual prayer,
then the right of the Ima`m who leads the prayer, then the right of your
then the right of your neighbor, then the right of your companion, then the
right of your partner, then the right of your property, then the right of
him who has a debt he must pay back to you, then the right of him to whom
you owe a debt, then the right of your associate, then the right of your
adversary who has a claim against you, then the right of your adversary
against whom you have a claim, then the right of him who asks you for
advice, then the right of him who asks your counsel, then the right of him
who counsels you,
then the right of him who is older than you, then the right of him who is
younger than you, then the right of him who asks from you, then the right
of him from whom you ask, then the right of him who does something evil to
you through word or deed, or him who makes you happy through word or deed,
intentionally or unintentionally, then the right of the people of your
creed, then the right of the people under your protection, than all the
rights in the measure of the causes of the states and the occurrence of
“Therefore happy is he whom Allah aids in the rights which He has made
incumbent upon him and whom He gives success therein and points in the
These brilliant paragraphs of the Ima`m’s words contain a brief display of
the original rights which he, peace be on him, legislated for the Muslims.
The Rights in Detail
Let us listen to Ima`m Zayn al-‘Abidin, peace be on him, to tell us in
detail about these wonderful rights:
1. Rights of Allah
“The greatest right of Allah against you is that you worship Him without
associating anything with Him. When you do that with sincerity (ikhla`s),
He has made it biding upon Himself to give you sufficiency in the affair of
this world and the next, and to preserve for you what you love of them.”
The greatest right of Allah against His servants is that they should
worship Him sincerely and should not associate anyone in worshipping Him,
for this will purify their hearts from deviation and free their intellects
from enslavement and dependence on other than Him. As for worshipping other
than Allah, such as idols, is abasement and enslavement, destroys man’s
dignity and honor, and throws him into low places, while Allah, the
Exalted, has guaranteed those who worship Him sincerely through making it
biding upon Himself to give them sufficiency in the affair of this world
and the next.
2. Rights of Self
“The right of your (nafs) against you is that you employ it in obeying
Allah; then you deliver to your tongue its right, to your hearing its
right, to your sight its right, to your hand its right, to your leg its
right, to your stomach its right, to your private part its right, and you
seek help from Allah in all that.”
The Ima`m, peace be on him, has mentioned the rights of self against man.
The self has right against man. The most important of them is that he
should employ it in obeying Allah and works which please Him, and should
not make it walk on the path of Satan. With this man can rescue his soul
from dangers and destruction, and save it from great evil. The Ima`m has
mentioned that each limb has a right against man, so let’s listen to his
detailed speech about these rights.
3. Rights of Tongue
“The right of the tongue is that you consider it too noble for obscenity,
accustom it to good, force it to politeness, silence it except for the
situation of an argument and interest of the religion and the world,
refrain from any meddling in which there is nothing to be gained, express
kindness to the people, and speak well concerning them. There is no
strength save in Allah, the Most High, the Almighty”
The tongue is the most important limb in man’s body and is the most
dangerous of them in his life. Man should confess men’s rights and
possessions, hence the jurists said: “Man’s confessing against himself is
permissible.” Man is honored or abused through his words. People respect
him when he does good and look down upon him when he does evil, hence the
Ima`m, peace be on him, summoned him to:
A. Consider his tongue too noble for obscenity, lest he should be low and
C. Accustom it to good words and what profits people and does not harm them.
D. Force it to speak politely and say good words which are raised to Allah.
E. Silence it except for accomplishing a need of the religious and worldly
G. Prevent it from any meddling in which there is nothing to be gained.
These are some affairs to which the Muslim person should accustom his
tongue. It is certain that they raise his importance and strengthen his
4. Rights of Hearing
“The right of hearing is to keep it pure from listening to backbiting
(ghiba) and listening to that to which it is unlawful to listen. There is
no strength save in Allah.”
The ear plays an important role in forming man’s character and conduct, for
it carries various words to his mind, hence he should use it as means to
carry noble moral traits and good qualities.
5. Rights of Sight
“The right of sight is that you lower it before everything which is
unlawful to you and that you take heed whenever you look at anything.” The
eye has rights against man. Among them is that he should prevent it from
looking at what Allah has prohibited as well as he should use it in useful
things such as knowledge, that he may with it educate himself and profit
6. Rights of the two Legs
“The right of your two legs is that you walk not with them toward that
which is unlawful to you. You have no escape from standing upon the narrow
bridge (al-sira`t [over hell]), so you should see to it that your legs do
not slip and cause you to fall into the Fire. There is no strength save in
Allah.” Allah has created for man the two legs to walk with them toward the
places of provision, hence their right against him is that he should walk
with them toward the path of good and righteousness; he has no right to
walk with them toward the unlawful things such as betraying man and
stealing his possessions.
7. Rights of Hand
“The right of your hand is that you stretch it not toward that which is
unlawful to you.” The Ima`m, peace be on him, mentioned the right of hand
against man; its right is that he should not stretch it toward what Allah
has made unlawful such as stealing men’s possessions, aggression against
them, and helping a wrong-doer, hence he is worthy of punishment in the
next world and men’s blame in this world.
8. Rights of Stomach
“The right of your stomach is that you make it into a container for that
which is unlawful to you and you eat no more than your fill.” The Ima`m,
peace be on him, expressed the rights of stomach against man, of which are
A. He should not eat unlawful food, for it results in bad qualities such as
the cruelty of the heart and negligence which deviates him from the
B. He should be moderate in having lawful foods and drinks.
C. He should not eat more than his fill, lest he should be afflicted by
indigestion which causes laziness, turning away from kindness and
generosity and noble moral traits. Besides it stops all the mental
abilities and leads to bodily diseases such as diabetes, blood pressure,
9. Rights of Private Part
“The right of your private part is that you protect it from that which is
unlawful to you and seek help against it through lowering your sight, for
it is the most useful helper, remembering death very much, threatening
yourself with Allah, and frighten it with Him. Protection and support
(come) through Allah, there is neither force nor strength save in Him.”
The sexual life in Islam depends on chastity, virtue, and refraining from
committing fornication. As for the protective ways which prevent man from
committing this crime, they are as the Ima`m mentioned:
A. Prevent your eye from looking at the unlawful, for sight plays an
important role in falling into the unlawful; in some traditions it has been
mentioned: “The fornication of the eye.”
B. Increase remembering death, for it puts an end to the agitation of
C. Threaten your soul with Allah, the Almighty, and frighten it with His
punishment, for this plays an important role in destroying the crime of
Rights of Ritual Prayer
“The right of your ritual prayer (sala`t) is that you know that it is an
arrival before Allah and that through it you are standing before Him. When
you know that, then you will stand in the station of him who is lowly,
vile, beseeching, trembling, hopeful, fearful, and abased, and you will
magnify Him who is before you through stillness and dignity. You will
approach the prayer with your heart and you will perform it according to
its bounds and rights. There is no strength save in Allah.”
As for the prayer, it is the greatest of all the religious rites, and the
most important of them in Islam. It is the sacrifice of those who have
reverential fear, as it has been mentioned in the tradition, and is an
arrival before Allah.
Its right against the Muslim is that he knows that he is standing before
the Almighty King, the Creator of the heavens and the earth and Giver of
life. He should turn all his feelings and sentiments toward Allah.
He should stand before Him in the station of him who is lowly, vile,
beseeching that which is with Allah, fearful of His punishment, hopeful for
His forgiveness and good pleasure. He should perform the prayers with
stillness, dignity, humble limbs, and good whispered prayers. He should not
occupy his mind with any of the world’s affairs. He should ask Allah to
forgive him his sins and offenses, and to release his neck from the Fire.
11. Rights of Fasting
“The right of fasting is that you know it is a veil which Allah has set up
over your tongue, your hearing, your sight, your stomach, and your private
part to protect you from the Fire. If you abandon the fast, you will have
torn Allah’s protective covering away from yourself. There is no strength
save in Allah.”
As for fasting, it is among the most important beliefs in Islam. It has
been mentioned in the tradition that it is protection from the Fire. Many
psychological, moral, economic, social, and health profits result from it.
Among them is that it strengthens the activity of will through which man
achieves his important objectives in life. The Muslim researchers have
mentioned the profits which result from fasting and written books about
Any how, in his words, the Ima`m has mentioned what the fasting should do
during their fast. He has mentioned that they should not confine their
fasting to refraining from food and drink; rather they should withhold
their tongues from telling lies and falsehood, their ears from backbiting,
their private parts from the unlawful, and their stomachs from the
forbidden, that they may save themselves from Allah’s chastisement and
12. Rights of Sadaqa
“The right of alms (sadaqa) is that you know it is a storing away with your
Lord and a deposit for which you will have no need for witness. If you
deposit it in secret, you will be more confident of it than if you deposit
it in public. You should know that it repels afflictions and illnesses from
you in this world and it will repel the Fire from you in the next world.
There is no strength save in Allah.” The Ima`m, peace be on him, underlined
the importance of alms and regarded it as a storing away for the alms-giver
with Allah. One gives alms for himself, for he will find it present with
Allah on the day when neither property nor children profit him. Also the
Ima`m, peace be on him, stressed the importance of giving alms in secret,
and that it should be free from reminding someone of it, for it is, in
fact, belongs to him, so how does he remind the others of it? As secret
alms was important, the Ima`m maintained a hundred families in Medina
(Yathrib), while they did not recognize him who maintained them. We
mentioned this in the previous chapters.
13. Rights of Hady
“The right of animals for immolation (hady) is that through it you desire
Allah and you not desire His creation; through it you desire only the
exposure of your soul to Allah’s mercy and the deliverance of your spirit
on the day you encounter Him. There is no strength save in Allah.”
In this paragraph, the Ima`m, peace be on him, has mentioned the rights of
al-hady or the animals which the pilgrims to the Sacred House of Allah
sacrifice at Mina`, in Mecca. The Ima`m highlighted that one should desire
Allah through al-hady; he should not mix it with any corrupt intention such
as dissimulation and seeking reputation, for Allah, the Exalted, does not
accept such a sacrifice. Then the Ima`m, peace be on him, mentioned that
one could approach Allah through doing easy works, not difficult ones, for
He did not legislate any difficult obligation.
14. Rights of Ima`ms
“The right of the possessor of authority (sulta`n) is that you know that
you have been made as a trial for him. Allah is testing him through the
authority He has given him over you. You should give him a sincere counsel,
and should not quarrel with him. You should not expose yourself to his
displeasure, for thereby you cast yourself by your hands into destruction
and become his partner in his sin when he brings evil down upon you. And
there is no strength save in Allah”
In these words the Ima`m, peace be on him, had highlighted the political
affairs before he spoke about the rights. He mentioned the rights of the
Ima`ms and rulers against subjects. He thought that kings, rulers, and
governors were tried through their subjects. This is because of authority,
which is among the most important factors of trial and seduction. As for
the rights of kings and rulers against their subjects, they are:
A. They should be loyal to the legal authority and give it more counsel,
that it may offer them more services such as construction, spreading
security and welfare, and developing the country in all fields. It is
natural that when the authority leads a life full of anxieties, disorders,
and discords, it will be unable to carry out its duties.
B. They should not quarrel with the authority, for such quarrel brings
about an inclusive destruction.
C. They should be mild toward the authority and respect it in a manner
which does not oppose the religion.
D. They should not oppose and disobey the authority, for such an opposition
and disobedience bring about serious damages for government and people.
These are some rights of the authority against its subjects, which are
necessary for the unity between people and their government.
15. Rights of Teacher
“The right of the one who trains you (sa`’is) through knowledge is
magnifying him, respecting his sessions, listening well to him, and
attending to him with devotion. You should not rise your voice toward him.
You should never answer anyone who asks him about something, in order that
he may be the one who answers. You should not speak to anyone in his
session nor speak ill of anyone with him. If anyone ever speaks ill of him
in your presence, you should defend him. You should conceal his faults and
manifest his virtues.
You should not sit with him in enmity or show hostility toward him in
friendship. If you do all of this, Allah’s angels will give witness for you
that you went straight to him and learned his knowledge for Allah’s sake,
not for the sake of the people. And there is neither force nor strength
save in Allah.”
Surely, the teacher is the maker of thought and civilization and does favor
for all mankind, and especially as it concerns the learner, hence the
Ima`m, peace be on him, praised his position and asked the learner to:
A. Magnify and honor him with all kinds of magnification and honoring, for
he does him great favor.
B. Respect his sessions and to be polite during them.
C. Listen carefully to his lectures, and attend to them with devotion.
D. Empty his intellect to understand his lessons. It is natural that the
student who does not devote himself to his teacher does not make of his
attending his teacher’s sessions.
E. Leave pleasures and desires, for they are two basic conditions for
learning sciences, especially the religious sciences, for he who devotes
himself to pleasures learns nothing of sciences.
F. To immortalize his teacher’s message through spreading his knowledge.
16. Rights of Owner
“The right of him who trains you through property is that you should obey
him and not disobey him, unless disobeying him would displease Allah, for
there can be no obedience to a creature when it is disobedience to Allah.
And there is no strength save in Allah.”
It is certain that if the Ima`ms from among the members of the House (ahl
al-Bayt) , peace be on them, had undertaken the leadership of the community
after the Prophet, may Allah bless him and his family, they would have
abolish slavery, and there would have been no trace of it in the world of
existence. In the previous chapters, we mentioned that Ima`m Zayn
al-‘Abidin, peace be on him, always released slaves to abolish slavery and
to rescue man from bondage. Also the Ima`ms, peace be on them, treated
their slaves with kindness, mercy, and affection.
Any how, the Ima`m, peace be on him, mentioned the owner’s rights against
his slaves; he made it incumbent on them to obey him, , unless obeying him
would displease Allah.
17. Rights of Subjects
“The right of your subjects through authority is that you should know that
they have been made subjects through their weakness and your strength.
Hence it is incumbent on you to act with justice toward them and to be like
a compassionate father toward them. You should forgive them their ignorance
and not hurry them to punishment and you should thank Allah for the power
over them which He has given to you. And there is no strength save in
The Ima`m, peace be on him, carefully considered the governments standing
in his time and found them standing on force and oppression. The people did
not elect them, hence they yielded to oppression and abasement, and hence
the Ima`m advised those rulers to act with justice toward them and to be
like a compassionate father toward them. Besides he advised them to thank
Allah for His favors.
18. Rights of Learners
“The right of your subjects through knowledge is that you should know that
Allah made you a caretaker over them only through knowledge He has given
you and His storehouses which He has opened up to you. If you do well in
teaching the people, not treating them roughly or annoying them, then Allah
will increase His bounty toward you. But if you withhold your knowledge
from them or treat them roughly when they seek knowledge from you, then it
will be Allah’s right to deprive you of knowledge and its splendor and to
make fall from your place in people’s hears.”
The great Ima`m, peace be on him, urged the religious scholars to spread
knowledge among learners and to make it a right against them. Allah, the
Exalted, has provided the religious scholars with knowledge and wisdom,
namely, He has made them caretakers over knowledge. If they spread it among
the learners, they will carry out their duties and deliver their message;
otherwise they will be traitors and oppressors, and they will expose
themselves to Allah’s vengeance and wrath.
19. Rights of Wife (Mamlu`ka)
“The right of your wife (mamlu`ka) is that you know that Allah has made her
a repose and a comfort for you; you should know that she is Allah’s favor
toward you, so you should honor her and treat her gently. Though her right
toward you is more incumbent, you must treat her with compassion, since she
is your prisoner (asir) whom you feed and clothe. If she is ignorant, you
should pardon her. And there is no strength save in Allah.” The Ima`m,
peace be on him, advised the husband to honor his wife and treat her
20. Rights of Slave (Mamlu`k)
“The right of your slave (mamlu`k) is that you should know that he is the
creature of your Lord, the son of your father and mother, and your flesh
and blood. You own him, but you did not make him; Allah made him. You did
not create any of his limbs, nor did you supply him with his sustenance; on
the contrary, Allah gives you the sufficiency for that. Then He subjugated
him to you, entrusted him to you, and deposited him with you so that you
may be safeguarded by the good you give to him. So act well toward him,
just as Allah has acted well toward you. If you dislike him, replace him,
but do not torment a creature of Allah. And there is no strength save in
Depending on Islam, the great Ima`m, peace be on him, regarded the slave as
a free man, for Allah created him, created for him hearing and sight,
provided him with provision, just as He did toward the fee man, hence the
owner has no right to show haughtiness toward him or to tire him. Rather it
is incumbent on the owner to treat his slave kindly; he should feed him
from what he eats, clothe him from what he wears, and regards him as one of
the members of his family. With this Islam could maintain slaves’ rights
and repelled from them any defect or enmity.
Rights of Blood Relatives
Rights of Mother
“The right of your mother is that you know she carried you where no one
carries anyone, she gave to you of the fruit of her heart that which no one
gives to anyone, and she protected your with her organs. She did not care
if she went hungry as long as you ate, if she was thirsty as long as you
drank, if she was naked as long as you were clothed, if she was in the sun
as long as were in the shade. She gave you sleep for your sake, she
protected you from heat and cold, all in order that you might belong to
her. You are not be able to show her gratitude, unless through Allah’s help
and giving success.”
What great mother’s rights are! How numerous her favors toward her child
are! It is she who makes her child’s life. Had it for her pity and
affection, he would not have lived. She takes care of him with her own soul
when he is formed, bears the burdens of pregnancy, and the dangers of
giving birth. After giving birth to him, she melts herself for him, spares
no effort to safeguard him, passes the night awake for him, continues
serving him sincerely, and looks after him with love and affection until he
grows up and makes his way in life. When he separates or goes away from
her, she feels that life separates from her. Mohammed b. al-Walid composed
the following concerning the parents’ feelings toward their child:
The mother becomes exited and perplexed out of love for
him, and the tears flow from his father’s eyes.
They suffer the distresses of death out of his separation
and disclose their hidden yearning for him.
If the child knew the distress his parents face when he
separates from them, he will lament for the mother from
whose womb he is drawn, weep for the old man who
wanders in his horizons, change his disdainful manner
into his affection, and repay them through his agreeable
22. Rights of Father
“The right of your father is that you know that he is your root. Without
him, you would not be. Whenever you see anything in yourself which pleases
you, know that your father is the root of its blessing upon you. So praise
Allah and thank him in that measure. And there is no strength save in
As for the father’s right against his child, it is very great, for he is
his origin. Were it not for the father, the child would not have come to
the world, hence the child should take care of his father’s rights and
undertake his affairs, especially during his old age.
23. Rights of Child
“The right of your child is that you should know that he is from you and
will be ascribed to you, through both his good and his evil, in the
immediate affairs of this world. You are responsible for what has been
entrusted to you, such as educating him in good conduct, pointing him in
the direction of his Lord, and helping him to obey Him. So act toward him
with the action of one who knows that he will be rewarded for good doing
toward him and punished for evildoing. And there is no strength save in
The child is a natural extension to his father’s life and duration to his
existence. He is part of his father; rather he is his whole. In his will to
his son (the pure Ima`m, al-Hasan, peace be on him(Ima`m ‘Ali, the
Commander of the faithful, peace be on him, said: “I have found you part of
me; rather I have found you my whole to the extent that if anything befalls
you, it befalls me; if death comes to you, it comes to me, hence your
affairs concern me just as my affairs concern me.”
Islamic education holds father responsible for educating his child and
makes it incumbent on him to plant the highest moral traits in him, to
accustom him to the most excellent habits, to turn him aside from vices, to
establish for him proofs for the existence of the Great Creator, Who has
power over all things. If the father does this, he fulfills his duties
toward his child and society, for the righteous person is an adobe in
building society. If he does not do this, Allah will question and punish
24. Rights of Brother
“The right of your brother is that you know that he is your hand, your
might, and your strength. Take him not as a weapon with which to disobey
Allah, nor as equipment with which to wrong Allah’s creatures. Do not
neglect to help him against his enemy or to give him good counsel. If he
obeys Allah, well and good, but if not, you should honor Allah more than
As for the brother, he is his brother’s hand, his might, and his strength.
He is his support during afflictions and hardships. The Ima`m, peace be on
him, has mentioned the rights of the brother as follows:
A. You should not take you brother as a weapon with which you disobey
B. You should not ask him for help to wrong the people and to aggress
against them without any right.
C. You should not neglect to help him against himself; you should guide him
to the way of good and show him the path to guidance.
D. You should help him against his enemy, Satan; you should warn your
brother against him, frighten your brother with Allah’s punishment, lest
Satan should delude him and turn him away from the straight path.
E. You should not neglect to give him good counsel concerning the affairs
of this world and the next. If he obeys Allah, well and good, but if not,
you should honor Allah more than him.
25. Rights of Master (Mawla`)
“The right of your master (mawla`) who has favored you (by freeing you from
slavery) is that you know that he has spent his property for you and
brought you out of the basement and estrangement of bondage to the
exaltation and comfort of freedom. He has freed you from the captivity of
possession and loosened the bonds of slavehood from you.
He has brought you out of the prison of subjugation, given you ownership of
yourself, and given you leisure to worship your Lord. You should know that
he is the closest of Allah’s creatures to you in your life and your death
and that aiding him with your life and what he needs from you is incumbent
upon you.” The master has great rights against his slave whom he releases
from slavery, for he unties from him fetters, saves him from the abasement
of bondage, makes him taste the exaltation and comfort of freedom; he does
him favors. Hence the slave should thank his master for his favors through
supporting and helping him.
26. Rights of Slave (Mawla`)
“The right of the slave (mawla`) whom you have favored (by freeing him) is
that you know that Allah has made you freeing him a means of access to Him
and a veil against the Fire. Your immediate reward is to inherit from
him(if he does not have any maternal relatives(as a compensation for the
property you have spent for him, and your ultimate reward is the Garden.
And there is no strength save in Allah.”
The Ima`m, peace be on him, summons the master to take care of his slaves’
rights, for Allah charges him with them and appoints him as a protector
over them, hence it is incumbent on him to take care of their rights, and
to treat them kindly. If he does this, Allah will repay him through
protecting him from the Fire.
27. Rights of Sa`hib al-Ma’ru`f
“The right of him who does a kindly act (sa`hib al-ma’ru`f) toward you is
that you thank him and mention his kindness; you reward him with beautiful
words and you supplicate for him sincerely in that which between you and
Allah. If you do that, you have thanked him secretly and openly. Then, if
you are able to repay him one day, you repay him.”
Islam has objectively adopted the summons to kindly acts. It urges men to
thank the good-doer and to encourage him to continue this high quality
which aims at spreading solidarity among the members of society.
The Ima`m, peace be on him, urges the Muslims to thank the good-doer
through proclaiming his kindly acts among men and supplicating Allah to
28. Rights of Mu’azzin
“The right of the mu’azzin (the one who calls the people to prayers) is
that you know he is reminding you of your Lord, calling you to your good
fortune, and helping you to accomplish what Allah has made obligatory upon
you. So thank him for that just as you thank one who does good to you. And
there is no strength save in Allah.”
As for the mu’azzin, he has rights against the Muslims, for he reminds them
of the times of the ritual prayers, which are the most important
obligations in Islam, hence they should show thanks and respect toward him.
29. Rights of Ima`m in Congregational Prayer
“The right of your Ima`m in your ritual prayer is that you know that he has
taken on the role of mediator between you and your Lord. He speaks for you,
but you do not speak for him; he supplicates for you, but you do not
supplicate for him. He has spared you the terror of standing before Allah.
If he performs the prayer imperfectly, that belongs to him and not to you;
but if he performs it perfectly, you are his partner, and he has no
excellence over you. He protects your soul through his soul and your prayer
through his prayer, so thank him in that measure. And there is no force and
no strength save in Allah.”
As for the Ima`m in the congregational prayers, he has great rights against
those who perform the ritual prayers behind him, for abundant repayment
results from the congregational prayers. The traditions support each other
about the certain permissible performing of the prayers. They state that
the more the performers of the congregational prayers are, the more their
repayment and wages are. It is well known that the performers of the
congregational prayers obtain great wages because of the Ima`m who takes on
the role of mediator between them and Allah, the Exalted, as well as he
recites on their behalf al-Fa`tiha and another sura.
30. Rights of Sitting Companion
“The right of your sitting companion (jalis) is that you treat him mildly,
show fairness toward him while vying with him in discourse, and do not
stand up from sitting with him without his permission. But it is
permissible for him who sits with to leave without asking your permission.
You should forget his slips and remember his good qualities, and you should
tell nothing about him but good. And there is no strength save in Allah.”
How wonderful the Islamic social regime is! It takes care of social and
individual affairs, brings nearer feelings and sentiments, and abolishes
enmities that divide the Muslims. An example of what Islam has legislated
in this respect is the sitting companion’s rights, which are as follows:
A. You should mildly treat your sitting companion through honoring and
B. You should show fairness toward him while vying with him in discourse;
you should not show vainglory and haughtiness toward him.
C. You should make him understand your words.
D. You should not exaggerate his affairs.
E. You should not stand up from sitting with him without his permission.
If the Muslims put these morals into effect in their life, love and
affection will spread among them.
31. Rights of Neighbor
“The right of your neighbor (ja`r) is that you guard him when he is absent,
honor him when he is present, and aid him when he is wronged. You do not
pursue anything of his that is shameful; if you know any evil from him, you
conceal it. If you know that he will accept your counsel, you counsel him
in that which is between him and you. You do not forsake him in difficulty,
you release him from his stumble, you forgive his sin, and you associate
with him generously. And there is neither force nor strength save in
Islam takes great care of neighbor and urges the Muslims to take care of
him. Ima`m ‘Ali, the Commander of the faithful, peace be on him, said:
“Allah’s Messenger, may Allah bless him and his family, advised us (to take
care of neighbor) to the extent that we though that he would appoint him as
inheritor.” Besides the authentic traditions of the Ima`ms of guidance,
peace be on him, urge the Muslims to take care of the neighbor’s affairs.
Through this moral quality the Muslims can establish social solidarity and
avoid differences and discords. Ima`m Zayn al-‘Abidin, peace be on him, has
displayed the neighbor’s rights as follows:
A. You should guard your neighbor when he is absent; you should guard his
property and family, and prevent the detested things from reaching him.
B. You should honor him when he is present.
C. You should support and help him when his absent and present.
D. You should not pursue anything of him that is shameful.
E. You should conceal his evil deeds and not spread them among the people.
F. You should not abandon him when an affliction befalls him; rather you
should help him in solving it.
G. You should not envy him when Allah does him a favor.
H. You should release his stumbles and pardon his slips.
I. You should show forbearance toward him when he does an evil deed; do not
return like for like.
J. You should repel him who abuses him or remembers him with evil.
K. You should not believe him who informs against him, lest he should stir
up enmity between him and you.
L. Associate with him in a noble manner.
These rights(which the Ima`m, peace be on him, declared(bring about the
unity of the Muslims, spread love and affection among them.
32. Rights of Companion
“The right of the companion (sa`hib) is that you act as his companion with
bounty and in fairness. You honor him as he honors you and you do not let
him be the first with generosity. If he is the first, you repay him. You
wish for him as he wishes for you and you restrain him from any act of
disobedience he might attempt. Be a mercy for him, not a chastisement. And
there is no strength save in Allah.”
The Ima`m, peace be on him, has showed the companion’s rights as follows:
A. Companionship should stand on bounty fairness.
B. The companions should safeguard each other.
C. Companionship should stand on affection, love, and brotherhood.
D. The companions should counsel each other.
E. They should help each other to obey Allah, the Exalted, and to refrain
from disobeying Him.
F. Companionship should stand on mercy and favor, not on torture and
33. Rights of Partner
“The right of partner (sharik) is that if he should be absent, you suffice
him in his affairs, and if he should be present, you show regard for him.
You make no decision without his decision and you do nothing on the basis
of your own opinion, but you exchange views with him. You guard his
property for him, and you do not betray him in that of his affair which is
difficult or of little importance, for Allah’s hand is above the hands of
two partners as long as they do not betray each other. And there is no
strength save in Allah.”
The financial association in Islam is based on developing property and
spreading honesty between the two partners, who have no right to dispose of
property unless they permit each other. They should exchange views with
each other concerning the affairs of the mutual property, such as sale and
transport. They both should preserve property and not betray or neglect it.
If one of them neglects it, he should be punished and fined.
34. Rights of Property
“The right of property (ma`l) is that you take it only from what is lawful
and you spend it only in what is proper. Through it you should not prefer
above yourself those who will praise you. You should act with it in
obedience to your Lord and not be miserly with it, lest you fall back into
regret and remorse while suffering the ill consequence. And there is no
strength save in Allah.”
As for the right of property (ma`l) in Islam, it is that the Muslim should
take it only from lawful ways such as lawful earnings. If he takes it from
unlawful ways such as usury, he commits sins as well as Allah will punish
Through these measures Islam has based its economy on the most modern
methods which do not let a group of people heap up property and deprive the
others of it. Hence, the Ima`m, peace be on him, summons the Muslims to
spend their properties on lawful things such as hospitals, schools, and
libraries. The Muslims sometimes do not spend their properties on such
things and store them for their inheritors. They will commit sins when
their inheritors spend their properties on things leading to disobeying
Allah, for they help them commit such acts of disobedience. Besides they
will gain nothing except remorse and loss when their inheritors spend their
properties on acts of obedience to Allah.
35. Rights of al-Graham
“The right of him who to whom you owe a debt (al-gharim al-muta`kib laka)
is that, if you have the means, you pay him back, and if you are in
straitened circumstances, you satisfy him with good words and you send him
away with gentleness.”
The Ima`m, peace be on him, displayed the rights of the creditor against
the debtor. It is incumbent on the debtor to pay back his debt when he is
rich. He has no right to delay it, for such a delay is a kind of injustice
and is forbidden in Islam. If the debtor is in straitened circumstances, he
should satisfy the creditor with good words, apologize to him for the
delay, and tell him about his incapability of paying him back. As for the
treatment with obscene words, it locks the door to kind acts and is one of
the ignoble qualities which Allah detests.
36. Rights of Associate
“The right of the associate (al-khlit) is that you neither mislead him, nor
act dishonestly toward him, nor deceive him, and you fear Allah in his
affair. And there is no strength save in Allah.”
The Ima`m, peace be on him, mentioned the rights of (al-khlit), who is a
partner in a mutual property, as follows:
A. You should not mislead him when you sell the property to him.
B. You should not cheat the property when you sell it to him.
C. You should not accuse his claims of lying.
D. You should not make him heedless in any of the affairs of the sold
thing; rather you should give him knowledge of it.
E. You should not deceive him in the dealings between him and you.
F. You should do your best to be honest to him when he entrusts his affairs
to you. If you cheat him, then such cheating is a kind of usury which Allah
37. Rights of Adversary
“The right of the adversary (khasm) who has a claim against you is that, if
what he claims against you is true, you give witness to it against
yourself. You do not wrong him and you give him his full due. If what he
claims against you is false, you act with kindness toward him and you show
nothing in his affair other than kindness; you do not displease your Lord
in his Affair. And there is no strength save in Allah.”
In this paragraph the Ima`m, peace be on him, speaks about the rights of
the adversary who has a claim against you. If what he claims against you is
true, you give witness to it against yourself. You should not wrong him,
for Allah observes him and judges among His servants with the truth. If
what he claims against you is false, you should act with kindness toward
him, preach to him, and remind him of the hereafter. You should not treat
him with rudeness, that he may refrain from his error and falsehood.
38. The Rights of al-Mudda’a` ‘alayh
“The right of the adversary against whom you have a claim is that, if your
claim against him is true, you maintain polite moderation in speaking to
him and you do not deny his right. If your claim is false, you fear Allah,
repent to Him, and abandon your claim. And there is no strength save in
The Ima`m, peace be on him, mentioned the rights of the adversary against
whom you have a claim (al-Mudda’a` ‘alayh). If your claim against him is
true, the Ima`m advises you to refrain from obscene words toward him, to
treat him with good words, to prevent from gossip which is useless and does
not help you take your right; rather it may take away your argument and
loses your right.
39. Rights of al-Mustashir
“The right of him who asks you for advice (al-Mustashir) is that if you
consider that he has a correct opinion, advise him to follow it, and if you
do not consider it so, you direct him to someone who does consider it so.
And there is no force and no strength save in Allah.” The right of him who
asks you for advice (al-Mustashir) is that you should be sincere in
advising him, and spare no effort to give him a correct opinion. You should
advise with gentleness, not with rudeness which natures and hearts detest.
If you have no correct opinion to profit him, you should direct him to
someone who has such an opinion, with this you do him a kind act.
40. Rights of al-Mushir
“The right of him whom you ask for advice (al-Mushir) is that you do not
make accusations against him for an opinion which does not conform to your
own opinion. If it conforms to it, you praise Allah. And there is no
strength save in Allah.”
As for the right of him whom you ask for advice (al-Mushir) , it is that
you should not make accusations against his opinion and abstain from his
advice. If you make accusations against his opinions, you are not forced to
put them into practice. Any how, you should thank him for them.
41. Rights of al-Mustansih
“The right of him who asks your counsel (al-Mustansih) is that you give him
your counsel, but you conduct yourself toward him with compassion and
kindness. And there is no strength save in Allah.”
As for the right of him who asks your counsel (al-Mustansih), it is that
you should guide him to correctness and lead him to the truth and guidance.
You should counsel him with good words. You have not right to give a
counsel which he does not understand, for your counsel will be in vain.
42. Rights of al-Na`sih
“The right of your counselor (al-Na`sih) is that you act gently toward him
and give ear to him. If he presents you with the right course, you praise
Allah, but if he does not agree with you, you show compassion toward him
and make no accusations against him; you consider him to have made a
mistake, and you do not take him to task for that, unless he should be
deserving of accusation.
Then attach no more importance to his affair. And there is no strength save
As for the right of your counselor (al-Na`sih), it is that you should act
gently toward him, honor and magnify him, turn your ear and mind to him,
that you may understand and consider carefully his counsel. If his counsel
is right, you should thank Allah for it. If it is not right, you should not
make accusation against it, for he does his best to counsel you, but he
makes mistake, hence there is no harm in it.
43. Rights of al-Kabir
“The right of him who is older than you (al-Kabir) is that you show
reverence toward him because of his age and you honor him because he
entered Islam before you. You leave off confronting him in a dispute, you
do not precede him in a path, you do not go ahead of him, and you do not
consider him foolish. If he should act foolishly toward you, you put with
him and you honor him because of the right of Islam and the respect due to
it. And there is no strength save in Allah.”
Islam has legislated social morals to build original society. Among them is
that you should respect the old one when he has excellence and precedence
in Islam. The Ima`m, peace be on him, mentioned these social morals as
A. You should leave off confronting him in a dispute.
B. When you walk along with him on a path, you should not go ahead of him.
C. You should not precede him in a path.
D. If the old one has no knowledge of a certain matter, you should show his
ignorance of it.
E. If he shows enmity toward you, you should show forbearance and honor
toward him because of his old age and his precedence in Islam.
44. Rights of al-Saghir
“The right of him who is younger (al-Saghir) is that you show compassion
toward him through teaching him, pardoning him, covering his faults,
kindness toward him, and helping.”
The Ima`m, peace be on him, declares the rights of him who is younger than
you as follows:
A. You should show mercy and compassion toward him; you should not treat
him with force and rudeness, for they deviate him from the right path and
create psychological complexes in him.
B. You should educate and teach him and open for him doors to knowledge.
C. You should treat him gently to attract him.
D. You should help him with his needs.
E. You should cover his faults to help him give them up.
G. You should be kind to him and leave disputing with him, that you may
guide him to the straight path.
These affairs, which the Ima`m has declared, set right youngsters and
45. Rights of al-Sa`’il
“The right of him who asks (al-Sa`’il) from you is that you give to him
when you are ready, to accomplish his need when you are able, to supplicate
for him concerning what has befallen him and to help him with his request.
If you doubt his truthfulness, make accusations against him, and do not
determine to give him, be sure that is of the trickery of Satan who wants
to repel you from your share and to prevent you from nearness to your lord.
Then leave him through covering him over and turn him away from you with
good words. If
you overcome yourself concerning his affair and give to him in spite what
has occurred in yourself in respect with him, surely these acts need
The Ima`m urged the Muslims to be kind to the asker, to help him, and to
accomplish his need, that they might achieve social solidarity in Islam and
to send away poverty and famine from them. This is in the case when you are
sure of the truthfulness of the asker. If you doubt the poor man and accuse
him of lying in showing poverty, this accusation may be of the trickery of
Satan who intends to deprive you of the immense repayment which Allah, the
Exalted, has prepared for the alms-givers. If you oppose this imagination
and give the poor man, surely these acts need determination.
46. Rights of al-Mass’u`l
“The right of him from whom you ask (al-Mass’u`l) is that you accept from
him with gratitude and recognition of his bounty if he gives, and you
accept his excuse if he withholds, and have good opinion of him. Know that
if he withholds, he withholds his property, and (you have no right) to
blame him for his property. If he wrongs (you), surely man is very unjust,
The Ima`m, peace be on him, presented the rights of him from whom you
ask(al-Mass’u`l). The first of his rights is that you show gratitude toward
him and supplicate for him when he honors and gives to you, that you have a
good opinion of him when he withholds you. Besides he who withholds the
asker, in case of being capable of giving to him, he deprives himself of
his property, for Allah has prepared abundant repayment for those who give
47. Rights of al-Sa`r
“The right of him through whom Allah makes you happy (sarrak Alla`hu bihi)
is that you first praise Allah, then you thank the person. And there is no
strength save in Allah.”
He who hastens to make you happy is among the good people, hence you should
thank him for this, remember his favor and kindness to you, repay him for
his kind act, that you may encourage him to do such a laudable deed.
48. Rights of him who does Evil Judgments
“The right of him who intentionally does evil judgment to you through a
word or an act is that you pardon him. However, if you know that your
pardon will harm him, you defend yourself. Allah says: ‘Whoever defends
himself after he has been wronged(against them there is no way (42:41). And
there is no strength save in Allah.'”
The Ima`m, peace be on him, mentioned judges. If they intentionally wrong
you through a word or an act, you should forgive them according to the
Islamic noble moral traits which urge you to pardon him who does evil to
you. If they unintentionally do evil to you, you should not blame them for
49. Rights of the people of Creed
“The right of the people of creed (milla) is harboring safety for them,
compassion toward them, kindness toward their evildoer, treating them with
friendliness, seeking their well-being, thanking their good-doer, and
keeping harm away from them. You should love for them what you love for
yourself and dislike for them what you dislike for yourself. Their old men
stand in the place of your father, their youths in the place of your
brothers, their old women in the place of your mother, and their youngsters
in the place of your children.”
Muslims have general rights, hence every Muslim should conform to them.
They are as the Ima`m, peace be on him, has stated:
A. Every Muslim should show safety, affection, and brotherhood toward all
B. He should be merciful to them; he should not show haughtiness toward
C. He should be kind toward their evildoer; he should not show rudeness
toward him, that he may set him right.
D. He should do his best to unify them.
E. He should thank their good-doer for his kind act and encourage him to do
such acts which will profit society.
F. He should help them when an enemy attacks them.
G. He should stand their old men in the place of his father, their youths
in the place of his brothers, and their youngsters in the place of his
children. It is certain that if the Muslims put these rights into effect,
they will be one hand, their words will not differ, their unity will not
disperse, and the nations of the world will not colonize their homelands.
50. Rights of Ahl al-Dhimma
“The right of the people under the protection (of Islam) (Ahl al-Dhimma) is
that you accept from them what Allah has accepted from them and you do no
wrong to them as long as they fulfill Allah’s covenant and the covenant of
Allah’s Messenger, may Allah bless him and his Household. So fear Allah.
There is no force and no strength save in Allah.”
These are fifty rights encompassing you. You should not leave them. You
should conform to them and put them into practice and ask Allah, Great be
His Praise, to help you in this. There is no strength and no force save in
Allah, and praise belongs to Allah, the Lord of the worlds.
Islam takes great care of Ahl al-Dhimma, the Jews and the Christians, who
are under the protection of Islam. It treats them as it treats other
Muslims in giving them to enjoy freedom, welfare, security, and
tranquillity. The Ima`m, peace be on him, stated their rights as follow:
A. You should accept the laws Allah has legislated for them.
B. You should fulfill the rights Allah has assigned for them.
C. You should judge among them according to what Allah has revealed.
E. It is unlawful for you to wrong them and aggress against them without
Treatise on Rights, which is the richest Islamic book, and which, though
brief, has shown important methods to make the world and all socities
peaceful with mutual respect.(The end).