If You Have No Shame - Do Whatever You Wish

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From Ibn Masood (ra)  who said that the Prophet (sas) said:  "Among that which reached the people from the words of the earlier prophethood: If you feel no shame, then do whatever you wish."  (Bukhari)

The Prophet (sas) informed us that this statement was part of one of the previously communicated teachings from Allah and that it was passed around among the peoples until it reached the beginning of this nation.  Another version of this hadith starts out:  "Nothing has reached the people from the words of the previous prophethoods except this..."

In any case, NOTHING which is allegedly from the previous revelations can be trusted or said to contain truth or wisdom unless it is specifically confirmed by Allah's final communication to mankind, the one sent to Muhammad (sas) and the ONLY one which is preserved intact.

The meaning of these words can go two ways:

First Meaning:

The meaning is NOT an order to "do whatever you wish" which is the apparent meaning of the words, rather its meaning is condemnation or prohibition of that.  Within this possible linguistic construction, there are two possible meanings:

  1. That it constitutes a threat and a warning.  Thus the meaning is: If you have no shame, then do whatever you wish and Allah will repay it fully and appropriately.  Allah said:


    {Those who deviate from truth regarding our signs are not hidden from us.  Is the one thrown into the fire better or the one who comes as a believer on Qiyama?  Do whatever you wish for He surely sees all that you do.}


    {So worship whatever you like beside Allah.  Say, the losers are those who lose themselves and their families on Qiyama.  Verily, that is the clearest of losses.}

  1. That it constitutes and informational statement.  Thus the meaning would be: Whoever feels no shame will do whatever they wish, for that which prevents the commission of evil is shame and whoever has no shame will descend iGET http://config.medialoads.com:80/dw/ concept of an order which only means information is similar to the Prophet's (sas) statement:  "Whoever knowingly lied about me, let him prepare himself for his place in the fire."

Shame is part of belief (iman).

From Abu Huraira from the Prophet (sas) who said: "Faith is some seventy odd parts and shame is one of the parts of faith."

Ashajj ibn 'Asar said: Allah's Messenger (sas) said to me, "You have two attributes which Allah loves."  I said, "And what are they."  He (sas) said: "Maturity and shame."  I said, "Have they been with me since long ago or just recently?"  He (sas) said: "Since long ago."  I said, "Praise be to Allah who put in my nature two attributes which He loves."

There are two kinds of shame:

  1. That which is innate and of the nature of the person.

    Al-Jarraah ibn Abdullah Al-Hakamiy said:  "I stayed away from sins out of shame for forty years and only after that I acquired some piety."

  1. That which is acquired and part of a change one makes in themself for Allah.


    From Abdullah ibn Mas'ood who said that Allah's messenger (sas) said: "Have shame before Allah as is befitting."  We said: "O Allah's Messenger, we do have shame praise be to Allah."  He (sas) said:  "Not that, rather having shame before Allah as is befitting is to guard your head and what it contains, your stomach and what it takes in, to remember death and disintegration and whoever desires the hereafter leaves the ornamentation of this world.  Whoever does all that has shame before Allah as is befitting.  (At-Tirmidhi said we only know this hadith from this chain.  It may be of the words of Ibn Mas'ood and not authenticated all the way to the Prophet (sas)).

The Second Meaning

Another way of understanding this hadith is that the command to "do whatever you wish" is just that - an order.  Under this contruction, the meaning is:  "If that which you intend or desire to do is not something the doing of which causes shame - before Allah or before people - because it is of the good deeds, obedience, good character and good manners, then go ahead and do it."

Along these lines, some of the salaf said when asked about [muroo'a] (good and noble character), they answered:  That you should never do in secret that which would cause you shame in public.

... ... .

From Abi Tamima Al-Hujaimiy from a  man from his people who said: "I met Allah's Messenger (sas) on one of the roads of Al-Madinah ... and I said to him 'Upon you be peace O Messenger of Allah'.  He (sas) said to me 'Upon you be peace is the greeting of the dead.  Upon you be peace is the greeting of the dead.  Upon you be peace is the greeting of the dead.  Peace be upon you.  Peace be upon you', two or three times like that ... Then I asked him about Al-Ma'roof (good deeds) and he (sas) said:

"Do not belittle any good deeds.  Even if it is giving a piece of rope, giving a shoelace, pouring water from your cup into the container of one seeking water, removing something harmful from the road or path, to meet your brother with a friendly face, to greet him with salaam, to give companionship to the lonely and even if someone speakes ill of you with something that he knows to be true about you and you likewise know it to be true of him, do not speak ill of him so his reward will be yours and his sin will be upon him.  And, that which your ears would be pleased to hear (i.e., people mentioning it about you), do it and that which your ears would not like to hear, stay away from it.

Whenever Islam defines a term, the Islamic definition supercedes and modifies and changes whatever the word meant among the people before that.

From Ishaq, who is ibn Suwaid, that Aba Qatadah reported that: we were in the presence of 'Imraan ibn Husain and a group of us and among us was Bushair ibn Ka'ab.  'Imraan narrated to us that day saying: Allah's Messenger (sas) said:  "Shame is good - all of it."  Or, it was "All shame is good."   Whereupon Bushair ibn Ka'ab said: We find in some of the books or the wisdom that some of it is calmness and dignity for Allah's sake and some of it is weakness.  He (i.e., 'Imraan) became angry until his eyes became red and he said:  "I see myself narrating to you from Allah's messenger (sas) and you oppose it?!" ...


Islam Began and Returns Strange

Islam started "strange" and went back to being "strange".  Be among the "strangers" who "recitify what the people have corrupted".

 From Ibn Umar (ra) that the Prophet (sas) said: "Verily Islam started out strange and will return to being strange just as it started and it will shrink back to between the two Mosques like a snake retreating into its hole."