The Domestic Help

Since 2012-11-14

Are you provided and helped but for the weak amongst you?

 

The Messenger of Allah (prayers and peace of Allah be upon him) has said, “Your slaves or servants are your brothers, and Allah has put them under your command. So the one under whose hand Allah has put his brother, should feed them with what he eats, and cloth them with what he wears. And do not burden them beyond their capacities; but if you burden them (with an unbearable burden), then help them (by sharing their extra burden).” [Agreed upon]

 
«إخوانكم وخولكم. جعلهم الله تحت أيديكم. فمن كان أخوه تحت يديه فليطعمه مما يأكل. وليلبسه مما يلبس. ولا تكلفوهم ما يغلبهم. فإن كلفتموهم فأعينوهم عليه» متفق عليه
 
 
O Muslims
 
A few number of people can afford to hire a servant, whether a male or a female, to help in the daily house chores. Among those few, there are most of the people of this country (Kuwait). This is a great blessing for which a Muslim should thank his Lord. People in some countries cannot afford their daily needs, not to mention bringing servants to their homes. Thanking Allah, Glorified and Exalted, for this blessing has many signs; the most important of which are:
 
1- Being charitable to those poor needy people.
2- Being just to and giving them their due rights.
3- Relieving their stresses.
4- Removing injustice and inequity from their shoulders.
 
 
 
Stances concerning the matters related to servants
 
 
First: the servant in the light of jurisprudential rulings:
 
The first: the servants are employees at the house, they should be treated as one. The wages they get is not charity to them nor is it a kind of favor. It is their due right. Allah almighty has said in the Divine Hadith, “I will be against three persons on the day of Resurrection… and one who employs a laborer and gets the full work done by him but does not pay him his wages.” [Reported by Al-Bukhari]
 
«قال الله تعالى: ثلاثة أنا خصمهم يوم القيامة.........ورجل استأجر أجيرا فاستوفى منه ولميعطه أجره» رواه البخاري
 
The second: their wages should not be delayed. The Prophet (prayers and peace of Allah be upon him) has said, “Procrastination (delay) (in paying debts) by a wealthy man is injustice.” [Agreed upon]
 
«مطل الغني ظلم» متفق عليه
 
The third: the hired help should know his rights and his dities. They should not be made to work for unlimited hours that leave them exhausted with no room for rest or sleep. If it cannot be helped but to over burden them, then they should be compensated both financially and morally. The Prophet (prayers and peace of Allah be upon him) has said, “… And do not burden them beyond their capacities; but if you burden them (with an unbearable burden), then help them (by sharing their extra burden).” [Reported by Al-Bukhari]
 
«ولا تكلفوهم ما يغلبهم، فإن كلفتموهم ما يغلبهم فأعينوهم» رواه البخاري
 
The fourth: they should not be exposed to vile words, insults, abusing, being hit or hurt, or backbiting. They are as inviolable as other Muslims. The Prophet (prayers and peace of Allah be upon him) has said, “The Muslim is the one from whose hand and tongue the Muslims are safe.” [Agreed upon]
 
«المسلم من سلم المسلمون من لسانه ويده» متفق عليه
 
The fifth: they should not be either despised or humiliated. The Prophet (prayers and peace of Allah be upon him) has said, “It is a serious evil for a Muslim that he should look down upon his Muslim brother.” [Reported by Muslim]
 
«بحسب امرئ من الشر أن يحقر أخاه المسلم» رواه مسلم
 
The sixth: the parents should not allow their children to abuse the domestic help. If the children abuse them, their parents should not overlook this matter; they should conciliate and applogize for them. The parents are responsible for that – if it happens; the Prophet (prayers and peace of Allah be upon him) has said, “Every one of you is a guardian, and is responsible for what is in his custody.” [Agreed upon]
 
«كلكم راع وكلكم مسؤول عن رعيته» متفق عليه
 
The seventh: in a lot of cases, the servant would not find anyone to help him in obtaining his due rights. Some policemen, may Allah guide them, will stand by the householder if a servant or a maid complain against him. They stand by him without investigating into the complaint which is religiously prohibited. The Prophet (prayers and peace of Allah be upon him) has said, “Help your brother, whether he is an oppressor or he is an oppressed one. People asked, “O Messenger of Allah! It is all right to help him if he is oppressed, but how should we help him if he is an oppressor?” The Prophet said, “By preventing him from oppressing others.” [Reported by Al-Bukhari]
 
«انصر أخاك ظالماً أو مظلوماً» رواه البخاري
 
 
 
Second: treating the servants well (out of modesty):
 
1- They should be fed from the food of the household. The Prophet (prayers and peace of Allah be upon him) has said, “When the servant of anyone amongst you prepares food for him and has undergone its hardship of heat and smoke, he should make him (the servant) sit along with him and make him eat (along with him), and if he does not do that, then he should spare some portion for him.” [Reported by Muslim]
 
«إذا صنع لأحدكم خادمه طعامه ثم جاءه به، وقد ولى حره ودخانه، فليقعده معه. ليأكل. فإن كان الطعام مشفوها قليلا، فليضع في يده منه أكلة أو أكلتين» رواه مسلم
 
2- They should be dressed properly; just like the dress of the household. The Prophet (prayers and peace of Allah be upon him) has said, “And he should cloth them with what he wears.” [Reported by Al-Bukhari]
 
«وليلبسه مما يلبس» رواه البخاري
 
3- The servant might be hit by one of the calamities of this worldly life and might need your help, with money or others. Help him with what you can. The Prophet (prayers and peace of Allah be upon him) has said, “Whoever is competent amongst you to benefit his brother let him do so.” [Reported by Muslim]
 
«من استطاع منكم أن ينفع أخاه فلينفعه» رواه مسلم
 
4- Do not, O dear brother, forget presents and seasonal gifts (in the Eid and the like occasions) and anything that may bring happiness into their hearts. These gifts are considered rewarded charities. The Prophet (prayers and peace of Allah be upon him) has said, “Save yourselves from Hell-fire even by giving half a date-fruit in charity.” [Agreed upon]
 
«اتقوا النار ولو بشق تمرة» متفق عليه
 
5- The servant might be needing to be educated the rules and teachings of Islam. Do not hesitate in doing that. The Prophet (prayers and peace of Allah be upon him) has said, “Whoever calls for guidance has the same reward as those who follow him.” [Reported by Muslim]
 
«من دعا إلى هدى كان له من الأجر مثل أجور من تبعه» رواه مسلم
 
6- You should forgive them their slips and mistakes. After all, they are like other human beings; they make mistakes as they do right. The son of Adam is oft-committer of mistakes; and the best among them who commit mistakes are the repentant. Allah almighty has said, {but whoever forgives and makes reconciliation, his reward is with Allâh.} [Surat Ash-Shûra: 40]
 
{فَمَنْ عَفَا وَأَصْلَحَ فَأَجْرُ‌هُ عَلَى اللَّـهِ} الشورى: 40
 
Transliteration: faman AAafa waaslaha faajruhu AAalaAllahi
 
 
 
Third: the condition of our Messenger (prayers and peace of Allah be upon him) with servants:
 
Anas ibn Malik (may Allah be pleased with him) said, “I served the Prophet (prayers and peace of Allah be upon him) for ten years, and he never said to me, “pooh” (a minor harsh word denoting impatience) and never blamed me by saying, “Why did you do so or why didn’t you do so?” [Agreed upon]
 
«خدمت رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم عشر سنين فما قال لي: أف قط، وما قال لشيء صنعته: لم صنعته؟، ولا لشيء تركته: لم تركته؟» متفق عليه
 
 
 
Fourth: the commandments of the Messenger of Allah (prayers and peace of Allah be upon him) concerning servants:
 
The Prophet (prayers and peace of Allah be upon him) has said, “Allah does not have mercy on him who does not mercy people.” [Agreed upon]
 
«لا يرحم الله من لا يرحم الناس» متفق عليه
 
The Muslims, especially in the era of the companions (may Allah be pleased with them), have applied the commandment of the Messenger of Allah (prayers and peace of Allah be upon him) concerning servants. One of the Orientalists reported that if a Roman woman wanted to bliss her son with an invocation, she would say to him, “May Allah make you a servant in a Muslim’s house.” Allah is the Greatest.
 
 
O beloved:
 
Fear Allah, fear Allah when you deal with the servants, the weak and the poor.
They have left their homes, families and children to earn lawful livelihood. It is enough for them of an ordeal to be away from their homes and families. Almost every day, we hear news about some of the servants committing suicide because of injustice and oppression along with the pain of estrangement and expatriation. Have you ever wondered, O beloved brother, if you are capable of such estrangement! When the one of us travels to some countries as a tourist; inhabiting the most luxurious of hotels and eating the best of food, nevertheless, he feels homesick and becomes eager to go to his homeland, to his family and children. Then, what about those poor people?
 
A very important remark: there is no doubt that some of the cases of the suicide of the female servants have been caused by a perpetrator. However, we have never heard that one of the citizens has been accused and punished the prescribed punishment. This indicates that those poor people are being treated with injustice because they are foreigners in this country; they have no supporter but Allah, Glorified and Exalted.
 
 
Remarks:
 
1- The male and female servants are considered marriageable persons, so it is not permitted for the mother or daughter to be alone with the male servant at home. The same applies to the father and son, they are not to be alone with the female servant. The Prophet (prayers and peace of Allah be upon him) has said, “No man should be alone with a woman except when there is a Mahram (unmarriageable men such as the father, brother, uncle …) with her.” [Reported by Muslim]
 
«لا يخلون رجل بامرأة إلا ومعها ذو محرم»رواه مسلم
 
Being lenient concerning this matter opens an immense gate for corruption and evil.
 
2- It is also prohibited to gaze or show the private parts in front of them. They are marriageable persons who take the same rulings as others.
 
Finally O Muslims:
Ought we not praise Allah, Glorified and Exalted, for making us the masters? What if we were poor that our mothers, sisters or daughters had to work as servants to others; will we accept this oppression for our mothers, sisters or daughters?
 
 
To conclude here is a glad tiding:
 
Being generous and charitable to the weak, including the servants, is a glad tidings of good and a great blessing. The Prophet (prayers and peace of Allah be upon him) has said, “Are you provided and helped but for the weak amongst you?” [Reported by Al-Bukhari]
 
«هل تنصرون وترزقون إلا بضعفائكم» رواه البخاري
 
We ask Allah, Glorified and Exalted, to make us and all Muslims: fair, just, charitable, merciful, and helping to the: weak, poor, needy, and the oppressed. He is Able to do that. Prayers and peace of Allah be upon our Prophet, Muhammad and upon all his family and companions. The last of our invocation is all the praises and thanks be to Allâh, the Lord of the Alamîn (mankind, jinn and all that exists).

 

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