Leading an Abstemious Life and refraining from the Doubtful

Imam Al-Nawawi’s Riyad-us-Saliheen
Chapter 68
Leading an Abstemious Life and refraining from the Doubtful

Allah, the Exalted, says:

“…you counted it a little thing, while with Allah it was very great.” (24:15)

“Verily, your Rubb is Ever Watchful (over them).” (89:14)

588. An-Nu`man bin Bashir (May Allah be pleased with them) reported: Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) said, “What is lawful is clear and what is unlawful is clear, but between them are certain doubtful things which many people do not know. So he who guards against doubtful things keeps his religion and his honour blameless. But he who falls into doubtful things falls into that which is unlawful, just as a shepherd who grazes his cattle in the vicinity of a pasture declared prohibited (by the king); he is likely to stray into the pasture. Mind you, every king has a protected pasture and Allah’s involved limits is that which He has declared unlawful. Verily, there is a piece of flesh in the body, if it is healthy, the whole body is healthy,  and if it  is corrupt, the whole body is corrupt. Verily, it is the heart.”
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].

589. Anas bin Malik (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Prophet (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) found a dry date-fruit lying in the way and said, “Had it not been for fear of being from charity I would have eaten it.”
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].

590. An-Nawwas bin Sam`an (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Prophet (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) said, “Piety is good manner, and sin is that which creates doubt and you do not like people to know of it.”
[Muslim].

591. Wabisah bin Ma`bad (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: I went to Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) and he asked me, “Have you come to inquire about piety?” I replied in the affirmative. Then he said, “Ask your heart regarding it. Piety is that which contents the soul and comforts the heart, and sin is that which causes doubts and perturbs the heart, even if people pronounce it lawful and give you verdicts on such matters again and again.”
[Ahmad and Ad-Darmi].

592. `Uqbah bin Al-Harith (May Allah be pleased with him) reported that he had married a daughter of Abu Ihab bin `Aziz and a woman came to him and said she had suckled both `Uqbah and the woman whom he had married, to which he replied: “I am not aware that you suckled me, and you did not inform me.” So he (`Uqbah) rode to Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) in Al-Madinah and put the matter before him. The Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) said, “How can you continue (to be her husband) after what you have been told?” `Uqbah (May Allah be pleased with him) therefore divorced her and she married another man.
[Al-Bukhari].

593. Hasan bin `Ali (May Allah be pleased with them) reported: I have retained these words of Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam), “Leave what causes you doubt and turn to what does not cause you doubt.”
[At-Tirmidhi].

594. `Aishah (May Allah be pleased with her) reported: Abu Bakr (May Allah be pleased with him) had a slave who brought him his earnings and Abu Bakr (May Allah be pleased with him) would eat from it. One day he brought him something and when Abu Bakr (May Allah be pleased with him) had eaten some of it, the slave asked him whether he knew where he had got that (food) from, Abu Bakr (May Allah be pleased with him) asked what it was, and he replied: I acted as a soothsayer for a man in the pre-Islamic period, and not being good at it, I deceived him; today he met me and he rewarded me for that soothsaying what you have eaten. Abu Bakr (May Allah be pleased with him) put his hand in his mouth and vomited up all that he had eaten.
[Al-Bukhari].

595. Nafi` (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: `Umar bin Al-Khattab (May Allah be pleased with him) fixed the payment amounting to four thousand dirhams for each of the early Emigrants, but for his son, he fixed only three thousand five hundred. He was asked: “He is also an (early) Emigrant, why have you fixed a lesser sum for him?” He said: “It was his father who took him along with him. He is not like one who emigrated by himself.”
[Al-Bukhari].

596. `Atiyyah bin `Urwah As-Sa`di (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) said, “No one will attain complete righteousness until he abandons (certain) unobjectionable (but doubtful) things so as to remain on his guard against something objectionable.”
[At-Tirmidhi].