Islam puts a lot of importance on being a good neighbour. Muslims are taught that they need to look out for and be good to those around them, no matter what their race, gender, age, status or religion.

The Qur’an says:

“Worship God, and do not join partners with Him; and do good – to parents, near of kin, orphans, those in need, neighbours who are near, neighbours who are strangers…“(Qur’an 4:36)

Muhammad (pbuh) also said:

‘One is not a true believer, if s/he fills his stomach while his/her neighbour goes hungry’

Muslims believe that they have been created for a purpose, part of that purpose is to look after the earth and take care of humanity.

To show people how to be good to others, Muslims believe that God sent Messengers – Prophets, who demonstrated goodness in their action and behaviour towards others.

Prophet Jesus(pbuh) was well known to have been gentle and kind to those around him, curing the blind, healing the sick and taking care of the needy.

Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), who Muslims believe was the last in a long line of Prophets, also taught kindness and care for humanity.

There are many examples of his gentle and considerate nature. Below is just one story of how he behaved with his neighbours:

On his way to his business every morning Muhammad used to walk passed the house of an elderly lady. The lady had heard malicious rumours about Muhammad, and had decided that she didn’t just dislike him, but she would make it known to him by throwing rubbish in his path as he walked passed her house. Every morning he was greeted with the same smell and mess, and every morning, Muhammad would ignore it, and go about his business quietly.

One day however as he walked passed the lady’s house, no rubbish came! Muhammad was surprised, and he started to enquire after the woman. He soon found out that she had been unwell, and didn’t have the energy to throw anything at anyone. Muhammad could have walked away happy that finally he had got this woman off his case, instead however he did something quite different.

He knocked on the door of the womans house and asked if he could come in, the lady was shocked to see him, had he come to take revenge now, when she was weak and unable to defend herself? Muhammad instead asked of her well-being, enquired if there was anything he could do for her and then proceeded to ensure she was well-looked after to make a full recovery.

Taking care of those around you is a fundamental aspect of Islam, that Muslims believe that they will one day be accountable for.