Cleanliness is generally an admired quality in all humans but Islam particularly emphasizes on cleanliness. It commands its followers to maintain a clean body and surroundings and encourages us to practice cleanliness by promising a great reward in return. Therefore Muslims around the world pay special attention to cleanliness. We can also find many hadith and Ayah which highlight the importance of cleanliness. To learn more about how cleanliness is emphasized in the Holy Quran and hadith we need to read the Quran and to learn Quran online we encourage you to visit our website, Online Quran Lessons. Our expert online Quran teachers not only tell you how to read the Quran but also help you understand the meaning of the Quranic verses, learn Tajweed online and learn about the hadith of the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.w.). To know about our courses in detail please visit our website and register now for our free trial classes.
The Prophet of Allah, Mohammad (s.a.w.w.) is reported to have said:
Cleanliness is half of faith
[Sahih Muslim] It is important here to understand what is meant by cleanliness. The Arabic word for cleanliness is Taharah which is generally considered keeping our body, our dress and our surroundings clean but what we mostly miss out is the cleanliness of thoughts which is referred to as inner taharah. The above hadith states that cleanliness is half of faith which makes us wonder if cleaning our body and our clothes is enough to achieve half of faith. The answer is ‘certainly not’, we need to purify our thoughts, our actions and our habits to complete our half of faith. Only then can we achieve closeness to Allah which is the ultimate goal of all actions. It is said in the Holy Quran:
Truly, God Loves Those Who Turn Unto Him In Repentance And Loves Those Who Purify Themselves.
[QURAN 2:222] Let us now discuss how we can attain Taharah. Taharah is of two types:
- Inner Taharah
- Outer Taharah
Inner taharah is the purifying of our heart and thoughts and it is comparatively difficult to attain. It can be achieved by upholding the five pillars of Islam, having clean and pure thinking process, avoiding sins, making a lot of dhikar and especially making sure the heart is pure of spiritual maladies such as anger, hatred, relying on other than Allah, fear of loss of provision, antipathy toward death, wantonness, pride, arrogance etc. In order to be close to Allah and to attain the half of faith it is necessary to maintain inner taharah.
Outer taharah is easy to attain as it includes cleaning of the body from physical impurities using water. It mainly includes washing of hands and face with clean water or performing Ghusl i.e. washing of the entire body. It is necessary to perform outer Taharah before performing any of the religious obligations therefore Muslims are directed to perform ablution (wudhu) before all acts of worships. It is said in the Holy Quran:
O You Who Believe! When You Intend To Offer The Prayer, Wash Your Faces And Your Hands (Forearms) Up To The Elbows, Wipe Your Heads, And (Wash) Your Feet Up To The Ankles. If You Are In A State Of Janaba Purify Yourself.
[QURAN 5:6] Here purifying oneself is done by performing ghusl.
The Prophet Mohammad (s.a.w.w.) himself practiced cleanliness and compelled His companions to do the same. Jabir bin Abdullah states that:
‘The Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.w.) came to visit us, and saw a man who was wearing dirty clothes. He (s.a.w.w.)) said, “Could this person not find anything with which to wash his clothes”’
It is important to note here that cleanliness does not mean that one should wear very expensive dress to look good, but the concept is to keep your body and your clothes free from all impurities. Prophet Mohammad (s.a.w.w.) himself, used to wear clothes that had patches all over them but were neat, clean and graceful.
Abu Hurairah (r.a.) narrates that the Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.w.) said that,
“It is the duty of every Muslim to take a bath (at least) once every seven days, and to wash his head and body”.
“Have a bath on Fridays and wash your heads, even if you are not in a state of Junabah (impurity, e.g. following marital relations), and wear perfume.”
[AL-BUKHARI] Islam emphasizes cleanliness to such an extent that not only are we told to keep our body and clothes clean and free from all sorts of offensive smells but we are also told to keep distance from the Holy places of worship e.g. the mosque, if we consume or use something that may give off any unpleasant smell. Jabir bin Abdullah (r.a.) reported the Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.w.) saying:
He who eats onion and garlic and leek, should not approach our mosque for the angels are harmed by the same things as the children of Adam.
[MUSLIM] To learn more hadith and Ayah regarding cleanliness and to understand cleanliness as half of faith further, please visit our website. We offer online Quran classes to those who want to learn Quran online. Our expert online Quran teachers also specialize in teaching you hadith and other religious obligations. You can visit our website for the course detail and register for our free trial classes.
All the deeds discussed here are what we do in our daily life: we clean our homes, wash our bodies, brush our teeth, wear clean clothes, use perfume, and keep anything that we come in contact with in our daily routines, clean and tidy. What we do not realize is that by performing all these deeds we are indeed earning a reward and the blessings of Allah Almighty, if we are doing it for the sole purpose of pleasing Allah. But we never have the intention of seeking Allah’s content rather we perform all these actions for our own satisfaction without realizing that we need only to shift our niyat (intention) from self-satisfaction to seeking Allah’s consent in order to earn a reward for our day to day acts.
Therefore, the next time you are clipping your nails, cleaning your homes, taking a shower, brushing your teeth, using a perfume or performing any other act of cleanliness make your intention to achieve cleanliness for the sake of Allah’s happiness and pray to Allah Subhan wa Ta’alla to reward you with the best rewards in return. This could be a bonus as you would be getting rewarded for your routine work without making any extra efforts.