Answered by Ustadh Tabraze Azam
Question: What is the source of the following Hadith?
The Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) once asked his companions; “Do you know what will cause you to have high walled palaces in Paradise (as a symbol of great reward) and will cause you to be raised by God?”
When they replied in the negative, he said, “To be forgiving and to control yourself in the face of provocation, to give justice to the person who was unfair and unjust to you, to give to someone even though he did not give to you when you were in need and to keep connection with someone who may not have reciprocated your concern.”
Answer: Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh,
I pray that you are in the best of health and faith, insha’Allah.
This tradition (hadith) has a number of different wordings; and the wording you mention is found in Tabarani.
It is also reported that the Holy Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) said, “Shall I not inform you of that by which Allah will raise you in degrees?” They said, “Certainly, O Emissary of Allah.” He (Allah bless him and give him peace) said, “Be gentle with the one who is furious with you, forgive the one who wrongs you, give to the one who withholds from you, and reach out to the one who cuts you off.” [Musnad al-Bazzar]
Khadimi quotes from Raghib who commented, “pardoning is the utmost limit of forbearance and bravery, giving to the one who withholds is the utmost limit of generosity, and reaching out to the who cuts you off is the utmost limit of excellence. [Khadimi, al-Bariqa al-Mahmudiyya Sharh al-Tariqa al-Muhammadiyya]
The Types of Character Traits
As an aside, Munawi in his Fayd al-Qadir quotes from the Knower (`arif) Ibn `Arabi who said:
Character traits are of three types: (1) traits which benefit others, (2) traits which benefit the possessor only, and (3) traits which fall into both categories.
(1) The traits which benefit others are of two types: (a) those which benefit others through the promotion of good, such as generosity and chivalry, and (b) those which benefit through the prevention of harm, such as forgiving, pardoning, and putting up with harm when able to seek requital.
(2) Those which don’t benefit others are scrupulousness, abstinence, reliance upon Allah and the like.
(3) And those shared are steadfastness and a cheerful appearance.
And Allah alone gives success.
Checked & Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani.