His Manners and Ethics – The Prophet’s Forbearance (PBUH)

The Prophet Muhammad (Peace Be upon Him) was lenient and soft-hearted. Narrated Anas bin Malek: The Prophet (PBUH) said, “Make things easy for the people, and do not make it difficult for them, and make them calm (with glad tidings) and do not repulse (them).” (Bukhari)

Narrated Abu Hurairah that a bedouin urinated in the mosque and some people rushed to catch him. The Prophet (ﷺ) said: "Leave him alone and pour a bucket of water over it. You have been sent to make things easy and not to make them difficult." (Bukhari)

The Prophet (ﷺ) said: “Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said, "He who is deprived of forbearance and gentleness is, in fact, deprived of good." (Muslim)

The Prophet (ﷺ) also said: "Allah is Forbearer and He loves forbearance, and rewards for forbearance while He does not reward severity, and does not give for anything besides it (forbearance)." (Muslim)

The Prophet (ﷺ) said: "Whenever there is compassion in something, it adorns it, and whenever it is removed from something it disgraces it." (Muslim)

The Lord taught him good manners, so the Prophet (PBUH) was humble and lenient with the people, and they believed him and embraced Islam, they believed, revered and supported him. Islam dominated the Arabian Peninsula in a few years peacefully, then it spread at the time of the Righteous Caliphs outside the Arabian Peninsula, in a short number of years Islam took over the Levant area, Iraq and Egypt which were the modern and most advanced areas at that time.

 He was not Favored over any of His Companions:

One of the aspects of his humbleness is that he did not favor himself over his companions in clothes, assemblies, places where they sit, or any other activity. When a stranger comes to see him, that stranger would not recognize the Prophet (PBUH) from among his companions. Dhimam ibn Thalab’ah entered the Masjid with his camel, he made it kneel and then tie it. Then he said to those in the mosque; 'Which of you is Muhammad?' The Prophet, PBUH, was reclining among them, and they said to him: 'This white man who is reclining.' Narrated by Bukhari

It seems that it was a common thing, that he was not recognized among his companions, so they figured that they should mark his place to be known, so that those who come would recognize him. Abu Dharr and Abu Hurirah narrated that Allah’s Messenger, Peace Be upon Him, was not recognized by strangers when he was sitting among his companions, so the companions asked Allah’s Messenger (PBUH) to make a special place for him where he would sit, so that people would recognized that He is the Prophet. Abu Hurirah said: We built for him a place to sit in from mud, he used to sit there and we would sit on both sides. (Authenticated by Abu Dawoud in his Sunan)

For his companions, no one was more welcomed or loved than Prophet Muhammad, but when they saw him they would not stand up for him because they knew how much he disliked that. ([1])

Sitting with the Widow, the Needy and the Young:

Allah’s Messenger, Peace Be upon Him, used to help the needy and the poor, he would fulfill their requests and help them. Abdullah bin Abi Awffa narrated that the Prophet, PBUH, would not be too proud to walk with the widow or the needy, in order to fulfill their needs. (Authenticated by Ad-Dirami in his Musnad)

Thus, he gave the best example in humbleness and kindness, as he (Peace Be upon Him) said: ‘No one humbles himself for Allah’s sake except that Allah raises his rank.” (Bukhari)

Anas reported that a woman had a partial derangement in her mind, so she said: “Allah's Messenger, I want something from you.” He said: Mother of so and so, see on which side of the road you would like (to stand and talk) so that I may do the needful for you. He stood aside with her on the roadside until she got what she needed. (Authenticated by Muslim in his Sahih)

The previous examples show how the Prophet, Peace Be upon Him, had the best of manners such as kindness and humbleness that the young, the old, servants and women would approach him for their needs.

Visiting His Companions, accepting invitations and eating from all kinds of food:

He used to accept invitations and would not say no even if he was invited for a small meal. Anas bin Malek, may Allah be pleased with him, said: A tailor in Madinah invited Allah’s Messenger, Peace Be upon Him, to a meal of barely bread, stale fat a few days old, containing pumpkin. Anas said: I saw that Allah’s Messenger liked the pumpkin, so I would gave him the pumpkin in the dish. I have always liked the pumpkin ever since that day when I saw him (Peace Be upon Him) liking it.” (Authenticated by in Habahan in His Sahih) [2]

This leader was the furthest person from worldly desires or whims, so it is no wonder that people with the highest principals and morals admire the Prophet, Peace Be upon Him. Prophet Muhammad, Peace Be upon Him, was a man who faced death, danger, aggression, and endured worst kinds of harm and bitterness for an idea that he would not gain anything from it.

The Prophet, Peace Be upon Him, used to milk his sheep, patch his clothes, repair his sandal, and work in the mosque. He helped in digging the trench, carrying dirt and gathering wood. He would allow someone to ride behind him, he disliked when people stood for him, he used to sit where he founded a place, and when he walked, people would walk in front of him and around him.

A person would enter the mosque, and he would not be able to differentiate Muhammad from the rest of his companions because of his humbleness. He would ask, which of you is Muhammad?” He used to eat simple food and wear regular outfits [3]

Ibn Abbas narrated that Allah’s Messenger entered the house of Umm Hanni’ on the Day of the Conquest of Makkah, he was hungry so he asked her: “Do you have any food?”

She said: I have a morsel of hard bread, and I feel too shy to serve it to you!

He said: Bring it to me.

He put it in some water, and she brought some salt. Then, he said: “Do you have any condiment?”

She said: “Only some vinegar.”

He said: Bring it.

When she gave it to him, he poured the vinegar on the bread, and he thanked Allah and praised Him.

The Prophet said: “The best condiment is vinegar. Any house that has condiment is not barren.” That was the meal of Allah’s messenger on the Day of Conquering Makkah (The Biggest Victory). [4]

Kindness to his Wives:

Prophet Muhammad, Peace Be upon Him, dealt with his wives with kindness and good manners, he is the best role model to all husbands. He (PBUH) said: “The best of you is the one who is best to his wife, and I am the best of you to my wives.” (Narrated by At-Tirmidhi from Aisha)

These situations show his kindness and good treatment with his wives:

The Prophet, Peace Be upon Him, used to let the daughters of Ansar come to play with Aisha. If she liked something that is not forbidden, then he would do it with her. When she drank from a cup, he would drink from the same spot where she put her mouth. He used to lay his head in Aisha’s lap and recite the Qur’an even when she was menstruating, when he wanted to be intimate with her while she was menstruating, he would tell her to wear an izaar (waist wrapper) and then he would be intimate with her. He used to kiss her while he was fasting. He was kind to the point that he would let her play, and show her the Abyssinians playing with their shields and spears while leaning on his shoulder.

The Prophet, Peace Be upon Him, raced Aisha while they were travelling twice, one time she won, and another he won and said: “This is for the last time.”

They scrambled for the door once, and if the Prophet, PBUH, wanted to travel, he would cast lots to choose which wife that would go with him.

When the Prophet prayed Asr, he would visit all his wives and made sure they are well. When it was night, he would go to the one whose day it was, and he would spend the night there. 'Aishah (May Allah be pleased with her) said: "O my nephew, Allah's Messenger (ﷺ) would not prefer some of us over others regarding the division of the time he would spend with us. It was very rare that he would not visit us all, and come near each of his wives without having intercourse with her, till he reached the one whose day it was, and spent the night with her." [Reported by Ahmad and Abu Dawud, the wording is Abu Dawud's. al-Hakim graded it Sahih (authentic)].

When the Prophet was traveling, he would not come back knocking at his house at night (as this might frighten his family). Anas, may Allah be pleased with him, said: The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) would not come (back) to his family by night. He used to come in the morning or in the evening (before dark). He commanded them not to go back to their houses at night suddenly. Narrated Jabir bin Abdullah: Allah's Messenger (ﷺ) said, "When anyone of you is away from his house for a long time, he should not return to his family at night." (Al-Bukhari) [6]

The Prophet was compassionate and kind with his wives, Aishah, may Allah be pleased with her, narrated: Once there was some kind of talk between me and Allah’s Messenger. He said to me, whom do you want as an arbitrator between the two of us? Do you accept Abi Ubaidah’s judgment? She said: No, this man is lenient, he will judge in your favor. He said: Do you accept your dad’s judgment? She said: Yes

When Abu Bakr came, Allah’s Messenger said: “Tell him.” She said: “No, you tell him.” Allah’s Messenger said: “She did so and so.” I said: “Be fair!”[7] Abu Bakr slapped me and said: “Do you say ‘Be Fair’ to Allah’s Messenger, daughter of Um Ar-Rumman? Whom else would be fair if it was not Allah’s Messenger? Her nose was bleeding (due to the slap), Allah’s messenger kept separating between the two of them saying to Abu Bakr: “We did not want this from you.” Aisha said: “He kept washing the blood from my clothes and said, ‘can you see now how I saved you from the man.’” [8]

Narrated Anas: While the Prophet (ﷺ) was in the house of one of his wives, one of the mothers of the believers sent a meal in a dish. The wife at whose house the Prophet (ﷺ) was, struck the hand of the servant, causing the dish to fall and break. The Prophet (ﷺ) gathered the broken pieces of the dish and then started collecting on them the food which had been in the dish and said, "Your mother (my wife) felt jealous." Then he detained the servant till a (sound) dish was brought from the wife at whose house he was. He gave the sound dish to the wife whose dish had been broken and kept the broken one at the house where it had been broken.

Allah’s Messenger, as we have seen, was just like anybody else at his home, he would take care of his needs, help his wives in what they need, setting a role model for the people to follow. The Prophet Muhammad, Peace Be upon Him, said: “The best of you is the one who is best to his wife, and I am the best of you to my wives.” (Authenticated by Ibn Haban in his Sahih)

Narrated Al-Aswad: That he asked `Aisha "What did the Prophet (ﷺ) use to do in his house?" She replied, "He used to keep himself busy serving his family and when it was the time for prayer he would go for it." (Bukhari)

In another narration Aisah said: 'He did what one of you would do in his house. He mended sandals and patched garments and sewed, he would do at his home what anyone of you does at his home." (authenticated by Ibn Haban in His Sahih)

In another narration someone asked Aisha, may Allah be pleased with her, “What was the usual practice of Allah’s Messenger, Peace Be upon Him, at home? She replied: "He was a human from among other humans. He himself removed the lice from his clothing, milked his goats, and did all his work himself". Authenticated by ibn Haban in his sahih [9]

He used to advise His family to be lenient, Aisha, may Allah be pleased with her narrated that Allah’s Messenger, Peace Be upon Him, said to her: “Aisha, be lenient. When Allah wills to bless a household with goodness, He guides them to the door of leniency (commit to leniency).” In another narration: “When Allah wills to bless a household, He bestows them with leniency.” (Narrated by Ahmed, Al-Mundhiri)

Mother of the Believers, Aishah, may Allah Be pleased with her, said: Allah's Messenger (ﷺ) said to her, "I know when you are pleased with me or angry with me." I said, "How do you know that?" He said, "When you are pleased with me, you say, 'No, by the Lord of Muhammad,' but when you are angry with me, then you say, 'No, by the Lord of Abraham.'" (Sahih al-Bukhari)

In this blessed hadith there are many indications of Allah’s Messenger patience with women, his kindness, forbearance and compassion he has towards his wives. The hadith indicates that the Messenger, Peace Be upon Him, does not resent the fact that his wife sometimes gets mad at him, this implies guidance to today’s husbands who denounce the anger of their wives and they do not try to make amends with them, or reconcile. Also, the way he knew how she was angry with him, and how he tells her in a funny way…this also indicates his leniency and forbearance. This comes from the Best of Humanity, the Seal of Prophets and Messengers! So, any person should not feel offended if his wife gets angry at him and should not be too proud to make up with her. The hadith also shows his humility with his wife, as he makes amends with her and tries to please her. Our kind Prophet is a mercy to all humanity and the world! [10]


  1. A hadith that the companions did not stand for the Prophet when He, Peace Be upon Him, entered… The Prophet (PBUH) said: "Do not exaggerate in praising me as the Christians praised the son of Mary, for I am only a Slave. So, call me the Slave of Allah and His Apostle."
  2. Yahya bin Abdullah al-Bakri, “Athar Mu’amalet ar-Rasoul fi nashr al-Islam” (The effect of the Messenger’s Treatment in spreading Islam)
  3. Anwar al-Gindy, “Aqbas men al-Sirah al-Atirah” (Lights from the Prophetic Traditions) Page 94-95.
  4. Previous reference, page 96.
  5. A group of Abyssinians who played at the mosque of the Messenger, Peace Be upon Him, with their shields and spears.
  6. http://sirah.al-islam.com/disp...
  7. That means tell the truth, and it was a joke by Aisha, she only meant to be playful with her husband, peace be upon him.
  8. Muhammad Abdu Qinawi, “Azaheer Nabaweya”, Page 215-216.
  9. Yahya bin Abdullah al-Bakri, “Athar Mu’amalet ar-Rasoul fi nashr al-Islam” (The effect of the Messenger’s Treatment in spreading Islam)
  10. Muhammad Rasheed al-Awayd, a Message to the Faithful, available on: http://akhawat.islamway.com/fo...

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