Adab is how to act in a given place, situation and time following our Prophet’s (pbuh) example.
Part 2 of 3: Perfecting your inner adab
The most important adab is perfecting your inner adab. You can perfect your inner adab by having positive thoughts and changing your intention. Your intention should be giving peace to people, be pleasant with people, be positive with and to people. The outer part that shows what you think and intend are your mouth, hands, eyes, feet, ears, senses and organs.
Our noble master, Prophet Muhammad, pbuh, in a hadith qudsi [holy saying], states that Allah says, “If I love a devotee of mine, I become his eyes, ears, tongue, hands and feet. He sees with Me, hears with Me, talks with Me, holds with Me and walks with Me.”
The most important one is your tongue. You must be careful of what you say. If you see something wrong with someone and you need to remind them, there are a few ways of doing this. For example, someone’s food is not that good, and they want to know if you like it. You do not say, “It is terrible!” You say, “It is good. Perhaps a little more salt and pepper would be good.” Help by being part of the solution, not the problem. Or if someone makes a mistake, do not tell them what a terrible job they are doing; say here is something that may work better.
If you go to another Tariqa [Sufi Order] and they do things differently, and they ask what you think, do not tell them you do not like what they are doing. It is not good. Say, “Our Shaykh taught us this way and this is how we know our path.” No arguments about this. Listen to other ideas; they could be handy sometimes. Also, do not try to keep correcting someone, learn to correct once in a good way and be positive in attitude, give peace to people. Do not create fitna [confusion]. In this world, even if you do not think it so, realize everyone is talking to you and try to learn something from everybody.