Chapter 5: Moral Ethics
5. Moral Ethics
The good and evil characteristics are called moral ethics; good characteristics are the virtues that result in attaining perfection and distinction of self (nafs) like: justice, hospitability, trust in God, maturity, positive far-sightedness, well-wishing, truthfulness, trustworthiness, being content with the will of God, thanking God, pleasant conduct, contentment, benevolence, bravery, being enthusiastic towards religion and chastity of the female members of the family, equality, observation of bonds of relationship (silah-rahm), goodness towards parents, pleasant behavior with respect to neighbors, good conduct with respect to the people, controlling of selfish whims, and love of God. It is incumbent upon each Muslim to identify good virtues and moral conduct, and should make serious efforts and endeavors in acquiring them.
The wicked and evil characteristics are the characteristics that cause the loss and decadence of the self like: arrogance, egoism, self-praise, oppression, not trusting in God, impatience, cynicism, malevolence, incorrectness, not being content with God, jealousy, thanklessness, tale- bearing, grudge-holding, wrath, immorality, greed, avarice, miserliness, hypocrisy, duality, treachery, extravagance, cowardice with respect to religion and female members of the family, injustice, cutting of family ties, annoyance of parents, annoyance of neighbors, misconduct with the people, love of position, faultfinding, backbiting, flattering, and prolonged desires. It is incumbent upon each Muslim to identify evil conduct and should make efforts and endeavors to remove it from his self. In order to be prosperous it is necessary to completely control our selfish whims, we must utilize and practice the Islamic moral ethics commandments; one should cleanse and purify one’s self from evil and wicked deeds, and should decorate one’s self with righteous conduct and superior virtues. Islamic moral ethics commandments are one of the most important chapters in Islam; it has paid special attention towards moral ethics. The Holy Prophet (SAW) has considered self-struggle as a greater struggle (jihad-e-akbar)52; he said: “I have appointed in order to complete the righteous conduct among the people.53 Since all human deeds stem from the characteristics of his self, therefore the first priority should be to endeavor to reform one’s self.
52. Was'a’il al-Shi’ah, The Book of Crusade, p-122
53. Muhajj’atul Bayd’a of Faiz Kashani, v.2, p-312