In an absolutely captivating style, the Nabi of Allah (sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam) offered the following priceless counsel to his devoted servant, Sayyiduna Anas (radiyallahu ‘anhu).
Sayyiduna Anas ibn Malik (radiyallahu ‘anhu) reports that Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam) arrived in Madinah when I was a young eight year old. My Mother took me by my hand to him and said: “O Messenger of Allah, every man and woman of Madinah has presented you with a gift. I have nothing else to offer besides this child of mine. Please accept him as your servant for all your needs.”
I served the Messenger of Allah (sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam) for ten years. During this time he never beat me, abuse or even scold at me. He never gave me an angry look.
The first advice he gave me was:
“O my son! Keep my secrets confidential, and you will become a true believer”
Sayyiduna Anas (radiyallahu ‘anhu) says: “I never disclosed the secrets of Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam) to anyone, despite the requests of my mother and the wives of Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam).”
He also told me: “O my son! Be thorough in your wudu and the two angels (who are recording your deeds) will love you. Your life will also be increased.
O Anas! Ensure that you bathe from Janabah (the obligatory bath) properly, if you do so all sins and evil will leave you.”
Sayiduna Anas (radiyallahu ‘anhu) enquired: “How do I do that?”
Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam) said: “Wet the roots of the hair and clean/rub the skin”
O my son! If you can, then remain in the state of wudu continuously, for if death comes to someone in the state of wudu, he acquires Shahadah (the rank of the martyrs)
O my son! If you have the ability to constantly send salutations upon me then do so, the angels will beg Allah to forgive you.
O my son! Try to offer some (nafl) Salah in your home too. (From Ibn ‘Asakir 9/253)
O Anas! When you make ruku’ ensure that you grasp you knees, spread your fingers and distance your elbows from your sides.
O my Son! When you raise your head from ruku’ allow all your limbs to settle in their original positions. Allah will not look on the day of Judgement to the one who doesn’t straighten his back when waking up from ruku’.
O my son! When you make sajdah, place your head and palms firmly on the ground. Do not make sajdah (hastily) like the pecking of a rooster. Do not sit (in Salah) like fox or dogs squats.
Refrain from turning about in Salah, as this is destruction. If need be then (it is allowed) in the optional prayer, not the Fard.
O my son! If when you leave your house, you make salam to whichever Muslim you see, you will return home forgiven.
Also keep in mind that every other Muslim is better than you. (Ibn ‘Asakir and one narration of Tabarani)
O my son! Whenever you enter your house, say salam upon yourself and your family. [this will be a source of Barakah- blessing- for you and them]. (Sunan Tirmidhi, Hadith: 2698 and Ibn ‘Asakir)
O my son! If you are able to spend your day and night without having malice for anybody in your heart, then do so as this will make your hisab (accountability in the court of Allah) easy.
O my son! This is my Sunnah. Whoever revives/ loves my Sunnah loves me, and will be with me in Jannah.
(Sunan Tirmidhi, Hadith: 2678, Ibn ‘Asakir and one narration of Tabarani)
O my son! If you follow my advice, there will be nothing more beloved to you than death.”
(Musnad Abi Ya’la and Al-Mu’jamus Saghir, see Majma’uz zawaaid, vol.1 pgs. 271-272)