Manners of Visiting

3.3 CONTROL YOUR EYES

When asking permission to enter a home, avoid glancing unnecessarily at its interior or beyond the guests’ quarters. This is shameful and harmful. Abu Dawood and Tabarani explained that Sa’d bin ‘Ubada (RA) said: ‘A man came and stood at the door of the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) asking permission while facing the door. The Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) said, ‘Turn this way,’ turning him away and ordering him to move farther from the door, saying, ‘Asking permission is prescribed to prevent intrusion.’ ‘

Bukhari also explained in Al-Adab Al-Mufrad that Thawban (RA) recounted that the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) said: ‘A person should not look inside a house before getting permission, if you do [look inside before asking permission] , you have already entered [or trespassed].’ Al-Bukhari also stated in Al-Adab Al-Mufrad and Abu Dawood and Al-Tirmidhi narrated by Abu Huraira who said that the Messenger of Allah (صلى الله عليه وسلم) said: ‘If the sight leaps, permission should be denied.’ Also, Al-Bukhari narrated that ‘Ammar bin Sa’id Al-Tujiby stated that Omar bin Al-Khatab said: ‘Whoever fills his eyes with the sight of the interior of a house before being permitted is a wrong doer.’

Al-Bukhari, Muslim and others narrated that Sahl bin Sa’d (RA) said that a man peeked through a hole into the room of the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) while he was scratching his head with a small pitch fork. When The Prophet saw the intruder, he told him: ‘Had I known you were looking I would have poked your eye! Asking permission is prescribed to prevent intrusion.’

3.4 REMOVING YOUR SHOES

When entering the house of your host, or even your home, be gentle as you enter or leave. Lower your eyes and your voice. As a rule, you should take off your shoes unless your host asks you to keep them on. Take off your shoes at an appropriate spot, and set them in an orderly fashion. Do not forget the manner in which you put the shoes on and take them off: you put on the right shoe first and you take off the left shoe first. It was noted by Muslim and others that the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) said: ‘When you put your shoes on, start with the right shoe. When taking your shoes off start with the left one. The right shoe is the first to be put on and the last to be taken off.’

Before entering your house or that of your brethren, inspect your shoes. If they are dirty, remove them or wipe the shoes against the ground. Islam is the religion of cleanliness and courtesy.

from the book ISLAMIC MANNERS
By Shaykh Abdul-Fattaah Abu Ghuddah (RA)

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