In a hadīth related by Imām Aḥmad ibn Ḥanbal in his Musnad and others, Rasūl Allāh ﷺ says “The disease of the nations of yore has crept into you, which is envy, and malice/hatred is the shaver. I do not say that it shaves hair, rather it shaves religion. By Allāh in Whose Hand rests my soul, you will never enter Jannah until you believe, and you will never believe until you come to love one another. Should I not inform you of that which will establish this love? Spread salām amongst you.’

If we develop hatred for others, it will bubble and enrage within. Hatred is not neutral. It does not remain settled. It agitates and incites a person to action, whether verbal or physical. it may lead a person to abusing, slandering, or seeking to harm another individual. It may lead to a person harming another’s name or dignity. It may lead a person to unlawfully consuming the wealth of another, or even physically harming them. Hatred does not remain stagnant. This is why the Prophet ﷺ referred to hatred/malice as ‘the shaver’; it shaves a person’s account of good deeds and wipes it clean.

This hadīth teaches us so much. We learn from this hadīth that there can be no Īmān without love. Developing mutual love and conveying salām can help protect our hearts from malice and hatred.

[This short excerpt is based on “Malice: To Hate & Hurt” which was delivered by Shaykh Riyadh ul Haq on 18th November 2016].