3. Water

June 22, 2013 in The Final Divine Religion ISLAM

Water is the most essential mean for a clean and developed environment. Even more importantly, the survival in the world depends on water. Water is life and the basis of all living beings. In the Noble Quran it is said that:

“We created from water every living thing.” (Light (An Nur), 24:45; The Prophets (Al Anbiya), 21:30)

God Almighty has given very special characteristics to water for his subjects to utilize. Among them:

1. Due to the polarity of water, it has the ability to dissolve many organic and inorganic compounds.

2. In contrast to other compounds, the most intense form of the water is not its solid form – ice – but its liquid form at +4 centigrade. Because of this, water freezes in seas, lakes, and oceans from the surface down, not from the bottom up. This prevents organisms living in water from freezing due to the ice on the surface.

3. The compound closest to water is hydrogen sulphide (H2S), and while it is twice as heavy as water, it is in gas form at room temperature. It is also a smelly and toxic gas.[1]

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The Noble Quran refers to water frequently. It talks about how rain forms, the stages in the transformation of clouds into rain, how rain is brought down to Earth with a precise measure and the dead soil resurrected, the underground waters, the circle of water, and cleansing of dirty waters.[2] It points out the importance of these blessings and gives rain the name “mercy.”[3]

Muslims, who recognize the value of water, place much importance on water services and pray for those who offer them water to “be as saintly as water!” In particular, offering water and sherbet to people around the Kaaba who came for Hajj is considered a high honor and an important duty.

Abbas (Allah be pleased with him), the uncle of our Master the Prophet, had a vineyard in Taif. He used to bring grapes from there, both before and after Islam, and offer them in Zamzam water to people who came for Hajj. After him, his sons and grandchildren did the same thing.[4]

One day the Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace be upon him) came to the area in the Honorable Kaabe where free water and sherbet was being served and asked for something to drink. Abbas (Allah be pleased with him) said to his son:

“Fadl! Go to your mother and get (a special drink) for the Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace be upon him)!” Our master the Messenger of Allah said:

 “Rather, give me from this drink which everyone else is having!” HE Abbas said:

“O Messenger of Allah, sometimes people’s hands touch this drink.” Our master the Prophet said:

“That’s fine, give me from the drink that everyone else had!” and he drank the regular drink that HE Abbas then offered him. Then the Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace be upon him) went to the Well of Zamzam. The family of HE Abbas was pulling water from here and offering it to the pilgrims. The Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace be upon him) praised them saying:

 “O the sons of Abdulmuttalib, drill the water! You are performing a rightful act!” Then the Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace be upon him) said:

“If I knew that people would not gather around you and try to do the same (since I did it too), I would hold the rope of the well like this (pointing out his blessed shoulder) and drill the water like you are doing.” (Bukhari, Hajj, 75)

The Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace be upon him) explained the virtue of offering water to people thus:

“On the Day of Judgment, one person who is destined to hell meets with a person who will go to paradise and says:

“O so and so! Do you remember that you have asked for water and I gave it to you?” asking for intercession thereby. And the believer intercedes for that person. Another one meets with a person who will go to paradise and says:

“Do you remember the day I gave you water for ablution?” and asks for intercession and receives it. Again another person that is going to hell says to a person that is going to paradise:

“O so and so! Do you remember sending me to take care of such and such work? And I went there that day for you.” And the person who is going to paradise intercedes. (Ibn-i Majah, Adab, 8)

The Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace be upon him) paid attention to the water he drinks to be clean and sweet tasting. He preferred wells whose water tastes sweet[5] and prohibited for wells to be polluted.[6] In the same manner, Islam requires clean water for making ablution and prohibits drinking or using waters whose taste, color, or smell is altered. Since water is so important, we have to watch ourselves when using it.

For this reason, it is necessary to love all human beings, animals, plants, and environment, in short the whole world, and treat everything well.

Another matter that deserves mention here is not wasting the nature, the environment, and water. God Almighty says:

“O Children of Adam! wear your beautiful apparel at every time and place of prayer: eat and drink: But waste not by excess, for Allah loves not the wasters.” (The Heights (Al Araf), 7:31)

“Verily spendthrifts are brothers of the Evil Ones; and the Evil One is ungrateful to his Lord.” (The Night Journey (Al Isra), 17:27)

“It is He Who produces gardens, with trellises and without, and dates, and tilth with produce of all kinds, and olives and pomegranates, similar (in kind) and different (in variety): eat of their fruit in their season, but render the dues that are proper on the day that the harvest is gathered. But waste not by excess: for Allah loves not the wasters.” (Cattle (Al Anam), 6:141)

The Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace be upon him) also says the following:

“Kindly, eat, drink, dress, and donate in charity without getting mired in waste or pride.” (Bukhari, Libas, 1; Ibn-i Majah, Libas, 23)

There can be no excuse for wasting water. The Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace be upon him) had stopped by HE Sa’d, one of his Companions. Sa’d was making ablution (wudu) for a prayer, and using water excessively. Our master the Prophet said:

“Why this waste?” Sa’d (Allah be pleased with him) asked:

“Is waste a consideration in making wudu?” The Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace be upon him) said:

“Yes, even if you stand by a flowing river!” (Ibn Majah, Taharah, 48).

If it is commanded not to waste water even when making ablution to worship Allah, it is obvious that in other situations waste will never be tolerated.



[1].     Docent Dr. Şakir Kocabaş, Kur’ân’da Yaratılış (Creation in the Quran), Istanbul 2004, p. 157.

 

[2].     Light (An Nur), 24 : 4; Ornaments of Gold (Az Zukhruf), 43 : 11; The Troops (Az Zumar), 39:21; The Event (Vakia), 68-70; Those Who Drag Forth (An Naziat), 79:31; The Criterion (Furkan), 25:48.

 

[3].     The Heights (Al Araf), 7:57; Councel (Shurah), 42:28.

 

[4].     Ibn-i Hisham, IV, 32; Ibn-i Sa’d, II, 137; Vakidi, II, 838.

 

[5].     Ibn Hajer, Isabah, III, 615.

 

[6].     Bukhari, Wudu, 68.