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18 June 2019 CE | 15 Shawwal 1440 AH
Explanation below

Hadith Explanation

Three Fingers

Ka’b bin Malik (radi Allahu anhu) reported: “I saw the Messenger of Allah (sal Allahu alaihi wa sallam) licking his three fingers after eating.” [Sahih Muslim, #5296]

To use less than three fingers for eating speaks of the manner of the arrogant, whereas to use both hands to this end is indicative of an overpowering greed. Thus, the best way of eating is that shown by the Messenger of Allah (sal Allahu alaihi wa sallam).

Here is also the affirmation of licking one’s fingers after finishing a meal, and not during it. Another hadith encouraging licking one’s fingers states: “You do not know in which portion the blessing lies.” [Sahih Muslim, #5300]  Therefore, to obtain the full benefit from the meal we should lick our fingers after the last morsel.

It is not by chance that we look down upon many of the Sunnah of the Prophet (sal Allahu alaihi wa sallam). Instead of emulating them out of love of the Prophet (sal Allahu alaihi wa sallam), love of Islam and hope of Allah’s reward, we instead consider them uncouth and distance ourselves from them. As predicted by the Prophet (sal Allahu alaihi wa sallam) Islam has become a stranger once again. Eating with fingers (washed), licking fingers after a meal, sporting a beard, wearing an imama (turban), sitting on the floor for a meal, etc., are looked at disdainfully.

A full and intelligent campaign was launched to belittle the Sunnah of Muhammad (sal Allahu alaihi wa sallam). The imama (turban) as worn by the Prophet (sal Allahu alaihi wa sallam) was considered a sign of a respectable gentleman until during the rule of the British in India it was delegated to members of professions considered to be menial. To keep their image up, people abandoned this Sunnah. Now most are not even aware that it is one.

Bilal ibn Harith al-Muzanit narrated that Allah’s Messenger (sal Allahu alaihi wa sallam) said, “He who revived a Sunnah out of my Sunan, which had died after me, for him is the reward like the reward of those who acted upon it, without any decrease in that reward.” [Tirmidhi] Let’s try to revive as many of the Sunnah of the Prophet (sal Allahu alaihi wa sallam) and each person that follows the Sunnah because of our reviving it, will have a copy of their reward made and credited to our accounts also.

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