Relationships among People

  • Nuraan Davids
  • Yusef Waghid


Thus far, we have consistently stressed peaceful and just engagement with others as an ethical enunciation of what it means to be human. In the previous chapter, we specifically focused on the concept of adab (just action) as the essential etiquette through which to conduct all forms of dialogue, transactions and disputes. Next, we turn our attention to the importance of relationships among people, as propagated through the paradigmatic foundations of Islam. Relationships, no matter how harmonious or tumultuous, are intrinsic to human existence. It matters that we matter to others, and that others matter to us. Islam, as al-din (way of life), offers particular conditions and restrictions on the types of relationships in which Muslims ought to engage. Islam identifies five basic categories of human action: fardh (obligatory acts), mandūb (recommended acts), makruh (reprehensible acts, but not forbidden), harām (forbidden acts), and mubāh (morally neutral acts). Relationships among people in Islam exist on a continuum of that which is obligatory to maintain, to that which is harām (forbidden acts). This chapter has two points of departure, which are not necessarily mutually exclusive. On the one hand, the chapter will consider relationships among people as an enactment of humanity, and on the other hand, we will explore relationships among people as ethical enactments of justice and social equilibrium.


Human Relationship Mutual Engagement Promote Gender Equality Social Equilibrium Deliberative Engagement 
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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Nuraan Davids
    • 1
  • Yusef Waghid
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Education Policy Studies Faculty of EducationStellenbosch UniversityCape TownSouth Africa

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