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Ten Things to Learn from Luqman the Wise

Luqman picture of sura


T he holy Quran mentions a person named Luqman and the title of chapter 31 is also Luqman.  Luqman the wise is often attributed to Luqman.  The holy Quran offers an intimate conversation between Luqman and his son.   Luqman received abundant knowledge and wisdom throughout his life, and so he was trying to transmit that knowledge to his son so that he may be successful in life and the Hereafter.   

What Luqman advised his son is a list of many core messages delivered by Allah Almighty to the holy prophet (saws).

Who was Luqman ?

Luqman was born in Nubia, present-day Ethiopia.  Luqman was captured and sold as a slave, and his master ordered his freedom.  Once freed, Luqman traveled to the district of Elah and Midian.  Luqman was believed to have lived during the lifetime of Prophet David (Dawud) (Pbuh).

Majority of Muslim scholars view Luqman as a wise man and not a prophet.

Below are 10 messages grasped from Luqman’s conversation with his son as indicated in the holy Quran:

1. Do not ascribe partners to Allah.

Worship only one god and do not worship idols for it is a tremendous sin.  The only sin that is not forgiven by Allah Almighty is associating a partner to him.

2. Be good to and honor your parents.

Repay your parents for their nurture, care, and love during childhood.   Your mother bore you in weakness and hardship due to pregnancy and the pains of labor and the delivery.   She also breastfed you and weaned you within two years.

Note that worshiping only Allah and being dutiful to parents are often mentioned together in the Quran.

3. Do not obey your parents if they want you to worship other than Allah.

But even if they do that, you must always treat them with kindness and respect.

4. Follow the way of the people who are obedient to Allah and who turn to Allah in repentance.

5. Beware of what you do no matter how small it is.

No matter how small the evil or good action that you perform, Allah will bring it forth and the person will be confronted by Allah with that deed.

6. Establish daily prayers at their prescribed times.

7. Enjoin the good and forbid the evil.

8. Be patient when enjoining good and forbidding evil and with whatever befalls you during your life.

9. Don’t show arrogance and superiority toward other human beings.

Do not turn your face away from people out of pride and arrogance.  Do not show superiority toward other human beings because they are poor or that you have more knowledge or status than them.  Surely, Allah doesn’t love arrogant people.  A person displays arrogance and pride by the way of walking, so do not walk with pride among people.  Display humbleness in the journey of life and in regular walking. We know that Allah Almighty kicked Iblis out of paradise because of only one trait which was arrogance or pride. 

When we speak with someone we have to show respect and humbleness.  A person may act with humbleness but inside the heart there is a mountain of arrogance.  Allah is aware of what’s in the heart. You  are not superior to anyone nor below anyone; you are equal to that person because all of us has honor in the eyes of God.

Allah teaches us that we don’t look at the exterior of a person and we can’t judge because we don’t know whats in a person’s heart, what good or bad deeds t hey have done, and their degree of nearness to Allah and his prophet.  Only Allah knows the secrets of the heart.  Prophet (saw) displayed highest level of humbleness and he always treated everyone with respect.

10. Be Moderate in your walking and do not raise your voice while talking because the worst of all voices is the loud braying of a donkey.  

Do not walk fast or slow, but walk in a moderate pace.   Speak in a low tone.  This means do not display arrogance by the way you speak.  A humble person has a low voice.  Also, speak only when your words will bring benefit to yourself and others.

Sayiddna Ali (ra), said “Keep quiet, keep silent.”

Holy prophet (sws) also  said “say something good or keep quiet”.  So Allah (saw) and his prophet (saws) instruct us to say something for the cause of Allah that will bring us and others benefits.

We tend to spend our time backbiting and worldly speech that will not build our palace in the Hereafter.  Are we preparing ourselves for the Hereafter?.  Are the words we utter make us and others get close to Allah and increase our love for him?  If not, then it is best to remain silent.

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