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Mawlana Rumi said,

"I am the servant of the Qur'an as long as I have life.

I am the dust on the path of Muhammad, the Chosen one.

If anyone quotes anything except this from my sayings,

I am quit of him and outraged by these words."


--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Wisdom on the Adab of a Guest
A Comment by Sidi Azhar Usman (www.azhar.com <http://www.azhar.com/> )

wa alaykum as-salam:

Notwithstanding the excellent advice noted below by . Sidi Faraz, I thought
it prudent to share a nugget of wisdom that I gleaned from some interactions
with a great shaykh. He told his students that the 'jihad' concerning food
is as follows:

To consume as little as possible to merely nourish one's body when eating
privately at ones own home, and to consume as much as possible when eating
publicly as an invited guest at a host's home. That is, the adab of being a
good guest is to honor one's host by stuffing oneself to an almost
ridiculous degree. This is particularly the custom (`urf) as I understand it
among subcontinent Muslims. His point was to emphasize how big a deal it is
to bring happiness to the heart of one's host, and how one should even go to
an extreme degree to avoid bringing any sadness or disappointment to the
heart of one's host.

In fact, on the occasion when he taught us this, a few students of the
shaykh were sitting trying to consume the very last portion of the night's
dinner, after they had been stuffing themselves for over an hour and a half.
They were looking sickly and on the verge of vomiting. The shaykh saw the
condition of these faqirs and smiled, commenting:

Haan, aase hi mehman ko hona chahi yein.
Yes, this is exactly how a guest should be.

Of course, Allah knows best, and truly success comes only from Allah Most
High.

I remain, at your service,

Azhar Usman

Faraz adds: The basis of this are the words attributed to the Messenger of
Allah (Allah bless him and give him peace),

"The best of faith is bringing happiness to a believer's heart." [Tabarani;
Hathami said in Majma` al-Zawa'id that its transmitters are reliable, except
one who is differed upon; Mundhiri and Iraqi pointed to its weakness, though
it is slight]

The intention in eating more than one's normal habit should be:

a) to honor one's host;
b) to bring happiness to another's heart;
c) to express one's thankfulness to them (for, as the Prophet (Allah bless
him and give him peace) said, "The one not thankful to people is not
thankful to Allah");
d) to strengthen relations between believers, family, friends, associates,
or neighbors;
e) to make this a sign of one's loving the host for the sake of Allah, which
too is from the highest of faith; and
f) to follow the example and guidance of the Beloved Messenger of Allah
(Allah bless him and give him peace).

The one who does this is actually engaged in a most noble act of worship. If
one's intention is merely satisfying one's desire for food, then one was
simply engaged in worldliness. "And each person shall have what they
intend," said the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him and give him peace).


RE: Avoiding gorging and gluttony (Hyderabadi hospitality)


> Hyderabadi hospitality dictates that you have to eat a lot of food,
> even if you aren't really hungry and you don't really want to eat.
>
> The host will ask you if you want some; you'll say no, to which the
> host will respond by putting the food in your plate despite your
> pleas to the contrary. Then he will ask you if you want more, to
> which you respond, no thank you, and he insists on giving you more.
> To refuse is acceptable, but not a reason to not be given more
> food. "No" has no meaning, and is taken as a "yes, please give me
> more so I can be sick."
>
> This is a very frustrating and common situation. How can I politely
> refuse in such a way that I don't actually get more food that I feel
> compelled to eat? How do I just leave the extra food in my plate for
> the host to see that I'm not eating it? How can it be done so the
> host isn't offended? Please let me know to prevent further gorging and
avoid gluttony.



Walaikum assalam wa rahmatullah,

Simply refuge, with a smile, and say you simply cannot have more.

Such customs are excessive and one is not called upon to adhere to them.

Wassalam,

Faraz Rabbani ([email protected])
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Mawlana Rumi said,
"I am the servant of the Qur'an as long as I have life.
I am the dust on the path of Muhammad, the Chosen one.
If anyone quotes anything except this from my sayings,
I am quit of him and outraged by these words."