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Wearing Garments That Reach Below The Ankles

Abd Allah Ibn Mas'ud (Radi Allah u Anho) narrated that Rasoolullah (Sall Allah u Alaihi wa Sallam) said: "He will not enter the Garden of Paradise who has an atom's worth of pride in his heart." A man said: "What about someone who likes handsome clothes and handsome sandals?"Rasoolullah (Sall Allah u Alaihi wa Sallam) replied: "Allah is beautiful and He loves beauty. Pride is refusing to admit the truth and having contempt for people."
(Saheeh Muslim Kitab ul Imaan)

Islam was revealed upon Muhammad Rasoolullah (Sall Allah u Alaihi wa Sallam) and the Islamic laws are derived from revelation of Quran and Saheeh Hadeeth only and not from any third source.

It is necessary to refer all matters of disagreement in interpretation of  Islamic laws to Allah Subhana hu Wa Ta'alaa and His Messenger Muhammad (Sall Allah u Alaihi wa Sallam).

Allah Subhana hu Wa Ta'alaa says:

"If you differ in anything among yourselves, refer it to Allah and His Messenger (Sall Allah u Alaihi wa Sallam), if you believe in Allah and the Last Day. That is best

and most commendable in the end"
(Surah An Nisa ayat 59)

"And whatever you disagree upon, its decision is with Allah"
(Surah As Shoora ayat 10)

What is mentioned in these verses regarding referring to Allah means referring to His Book; and referring to the Messenger (Sall Allah u Alaihi wa Sallam) means referring to him in person when alive, to his Sunnah after his death. The third verse of surah Al Maaidah- "Today I have perfected for you your religion!" is clear proof that the Shari'ah has been perfected and completed. It covers everything that the believers may disagree upon concerning their religion, from the smallest to the greatest, whether hidden or evident. And if there were not a clear solution to their disagreement in Allah's Book and His Messenger's (Sall Allah u Alaihi wa Sallam) Sunnah, or if they were not enough for that, then He would not have ordered us referral to them.

Rasoolullah (Sall Allah u Alaihi wa Sallam) said:

"O people for sure, I am leaving among you these (two things), if you hold them firmly, you would never go astray. Those two things are Allah's book and the way of his prophet
(Narrated by Haakim in Al Mustadrak with a Saheeh Sanad)

Shari'ah is the Judge and is not to be judged: This is its power and its role. This means that the Shari'ah rules and judges whether people's sayings and doings are correct or not. It judges between them when in conflict and disagreement. It confirms the right and abolishes the falsehood.

We should only refer the matters of disagreement to Allah Subhana hu Wa Ta'alaa and Rasoolullah (Sall Allah u Alaihi wa Sallam) that is Quran and Saheeh Hadeeth.

Matters of disagreement should never be decided through Aqwaal ur Rijaal. Surely the words and opinions of scholars and our elders can never be called Wahi -divine revelation; so they can never bring an end to our disputes. If a person quotes from one scholar then another person would quote from another scholar and disagreement would persist. So for ending disagreements we should refer all such matters to the one who is the final authority on Islam and that is Rasoolullah (Sall Allah u Alaihi wa Sallam).

Allah Subhana hu Wa Ta'alaa says:

"Follow that which has been revealed upon you from Allah and do not follow any other friends besides it. Little do you recollect!"
(Surah Al-A'raaf: Ayah 3) 

What does Rasoolullah (Sall Allah u Alaihi wa Sallam) with regards to lowering the garments below the ankles?

Do the authentic narrations tell us that trailing of the garments is only an issue because of arrogance and hautiness alone? And that if a person trails his lower garment without any pride and hautiness, can he do so?

Narrated Abu Dharr (Radi Allah u Anh): Rasoolullah (Sall Allah u Alaihi wa Sallam) observed: "There are three (persons) with whom Allah would neither speak on the Day of Resurrection, nor would look at them nor would absolve them, and there is a painful chastisement for them." The Messenger of Allah (Sall Allah u Alaihi wa Sallam) repeated it three times. Abu Dharr remarked: "They failed and they lost; who are these persons, Messenger of Allah?" Upon this he observed: "They are: the one who makes (his garment) hang down on the ground (al-musbil), the recounter of obligation, and the seller of goods by false oath."
(Saheeh Muslim)

Narrated `Abd Allah bin `Umar (Radi Allah u Anhuma): Rasoolullah (Sall Allah u Alaihi wa Sallam) said: "Allah will not look, on the Day of Resurrection, at the person who drags his garment (behind him) out of conceit. On that Abu Bakr said, "O Allah's Apostle! One side of my izar hangs low if I do not take care of it." The Prophet said, "You are not one of those who do that (knowingly) out of conceit."
(Saheeh Bukhari Kitab ul Manaqib)

There is a  hadeeth of Abu Sa`id al-Khudri (Radi Allah u Anh) narrated by Malik, Abu Daud, Nasa'i, and Ibn Majah, which Abu `Awana and Ibn Hibbaan declared sound, all through al-`Ala' ibn` Abd al-Rahman... Abu Daud, Nasa'i, and al-Hakim declared it sound, [also Ahmad] cited the hadith of Abu Jurayy [Jabir ibn Sulaym] whereby Rasoolullah (Sall Allah u Alaihi wa Sallam) said:

"Lift up you lower garment to the middle of your shank, and if you don't wish to, then to the ankles. Beware the trailing of the lower garment, for it is arrogance, and Allah does not like arrogance."

Nasa'i also cited, as well as al-Hakim who declared it sound, the hadith of Hudhaifa with the wording:

"The lower garment is let down to the middle of the two shanks, and if you don't wish to, then lower, and if you don't wish to, then lower than the shanks, but there is no right to the lower garment for the ankles."

Narrated `Abd Allah ibn `Umar (Radi Allah u Anhuma) Rasoolullah (Sall Allah u Alaihi wa Sallam) said: "While a man was trailing his izar on the ground, suddenly Allah made him sink into the earth and he will go on wailing in the earth until the Day of Resurrection."
(Saheeh Bukhari)

Special significance should be given to the words of Rasoolullah (Sall Allah u Alaihi wa Sallam) in the third hadeeth from above:

"Beware the trailing of the lower garment, for it is arrogance, and Allah does not like arrogance."

The above are categorical words in this regard and need no elaboration. The trailing of the garment has been declared arrogance and not that if the garment is allowed to hang below the ankles due to arrogance would it be a detestable action. Any one who hangs his lower garment knowingly would be committing the grave sin of Al kibr, that is arrogance. This particular action of his is itself a form of arrogance and hence the garment should never be allowed to hang below the ankles as this would be against the very essence of Imaan as already mentioned in the first hadeeth which is being quoted again due to its importance:

'Abd Allah Ibn Mas'ud (Radi Allah u Anh) said that Rasoolullah (Sall Allah u Alaihi wa Sallam) said: "He will not enter the Garden of Paradise who has an atom's worth of pride in his heart." A man said: "What about someone who likes handsome clothes and handsome sandals?" Rasoolullah (Sall Allah u Alaihi wa Sallam) replied: "Allah is beautiful and He loves beauty. Pride is refusing to admit the truth and having contempt for people."
(Saheeh Muslim Kitab ul Imaan)

Thus we can summarize that hanging of the lower garment knowingly is a form of arrogance and he who has an atom's weight of arrogance in his heart shall not enter the paradise.

So the words of Rasoolullah (Sall Allah u Alaihi wa Sallam) have decided this matter, we do not need any debates on this issue now, no scholarly arguments or Aqwaal ur Rijaal but the words of the one who matters to us, that is Rasoolullah (Sall Allah u Alaihi wa Sallam).

(O prophet!) No, by your Lord, they are not believers until they make you their judge in the disputes that break out between them and then do not resist what you decide and submit themselves [to you] completely. (Surah An-Nisa: 65)

But we should also understand that the caution of Rasoolullah (Sall Allah u Alaihi wa Sallam) against vestment pride does not consist solely the point about ankle-length. Because, there are those who wear the bottoms of their trousers cut short to ankle length and strut with as much pride as the pagans of Jahiliyya meant by the very hadith they claim to follow. Therefore wearing the garment above ankle length while nurturing the hidden pride it negates will not help either.

We as Muslimeen should not have any pride or arrogance in our hearts nor look down upon any fellow Muslim brother while practicing the compulsory Sunnah of keeping our garments above ankle length under all circumstances.

Abu Huraira reported Rasoolullah (Sall Allah u Alaihi wa Sallam) as saying:

 'Do not nurse grudge and do not bid your brother out for raising the price and do not nurse aversion or enmity and do not enter into a transaction when the others have entered into that transaction and O servants of Allah! be as fellow brothers. A Muslim is the brother of a Muslim. He neither oppresses him nor humiliates him nor looks down upon him. The piety is here, (and while saying so) Rasoolullah (Sall Allah u Alaihi wa Sallam) pointed towards his chest thrice. It is a serious evil for a Muslim that he should look down upon his Muslim brother. All things of a Muslim are inviolable for his brother in faith: his blood, his wealth and his honour.

(Saheeh Muslim (Kitab Al-Birr was-Silat-I-wa'l-Adab Book 032, Number 6219)

 

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