Imam Zijad’s Corner: NOT Rejoicing Over People’s Troubles

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NOT Rejoicing Over People’s Troubles

Reported by Wasila bin al-Asqa’i (r) that Muhammad (S) said:

“Do not rejoice over the troubles of your brother, lest God might have mercy on him and involve you in this trouble.” (Tirmizi)

Transliteration: “La Tuzhirish Shamatata Li Akhika; Fa Yarhamahullahu Wa Yabtaliyak.”

Note: Rejoicing over anyone’s trouble is indecent according to Islam. For a believer, such behavior would be utterly unacceptable. Such rejoicing indicates a substandard attitude and may earn the displeasure of God. Moreover, God may turn the situation around and place the person rejoicing in a similar situation.

A believer’s conduct toward others–Muslims or non-Muslims–can be only one way: rejoice over others’ happiness and feel sorrow when others are sad or troubled. That is a sublime teaching of Islam.

The aspect of Muslim personality that is emphasized here also reinforces another general point. Islam is not merely a matter of form and legal codes. For example, a person may offer Salat most meticulously but may not strive to stay clear of indecency (Fahisha) and vices (Munkar).

There is no legal code to prosecute such a person who simply does not benefit from the value system of Islam. Similarly, a Muslim is not subject to a penal code for rejoicing over other people’s troubles. He cannot, however, avoid God’s judgment on such conduct.

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