Can Muslims and Non-Muslims Become Good Neighbors?

Name of Questioner: Raquel

Date: 23-12-2019 07:45:20 AM

Consultant: Ask About Islam Editorial Team


In Europe you know that we have non-Muslim neighbors. Can we deal with them in the way we deal with Muslim brothers? For example, if we cook something, can we send them food? If we send them, they may also send us which will be probably haram.

Dear Raquel,

Thank you for your question.

Answering your question, Dr. Jasser Auda, Professor and Al-Shatibi Chair of Maqasid Studies at the International Peace College South Africa, the Executive Director of the Maqasid Institute, states:

Regarding becoming good neighbors with non-Muslims, please do not listen to those who are against making friends with your neighbors. I will not give you my opinion. I will quote the Quran here.

Didn't Allah say:

As for such [of the unbelievers] as do not fight against you on account of [your] faith, and neither drive you forth from your homelands, God does not forbid you to show them kindness and to behave towards them with full equity: for, verily, God loves those who act equitably. God only forbids you to turn in friendship towards such as fight against you because of [your] faith, and drive you forth from your homelands, or aid [others] in driving you forth: and as for those [from among you] who turn towards them in friendship; it is they, they who are truly wrongdoers! (Quran 60:8-9)

Notice that the word "birr" (translated as kindness) that God used in this context is the same word that is used for the type of kindness that a Muslim should show to his/her parents, as in "birr al-walidain" (kindness to parents)! This is not just friendship but deep respect, isn't it?

We hope this answers your questions.

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