1. Good Character is the Main Reason People will Enter Paradise
Prophet Muhammad said:
What is most likely to send people to Paradise? Being conscious of Allah and good manners. (Al-Bukhari)
He (peace be upon him) also said:
I guarantee a house on the outskirts of the Garden to anyone who abstains from disputation, even if he is in the right, and a house in the middle of the Garden for anyone who abandons lying, even when he jests, and a house at the highest of the Garden for anyone who has good character.
2. Be Highest on the Scale
Prophet Muhammad said:
Nothing is weightier on the Scale of Deeds than one’s good manners.(Al-Bukhari)
3. Be Close to the Prophet on the Day of Judgment
The Prophet said:
Those I love most and those sitting nearest to me on the Day of Rising will be those of you with the best character. Those most hateful to me and the furthest of you from me on the Day of Rising will be the pompous, the braggarts and the arrogant…
4. Reach the Stations of Those Engrossed in Worship
I heard the Messenger of Allah say, ‘By his good character a believer can reach the same rank as someone who fasts and prays at night.
How beautiful is it if the person fasts and prays at night, and perfects his character, then no one can compare to him.
5. Be Beloved of Allah and His Messenger
The Prophet said, in Tabaraani:
The most beloved servants of Allah, to Allah, are the best of them in character.
6. Good Character was the Way of the Prophet
In the Quran Allah says:
And indeed, you are of a great moral character. (68:4)
7. Maintain the Most Perfect Belief
The Prophet Muhammad said:
The believers with the most perfect belief are the best of them in character. The best of you are the best of you towards your wives.
Now, is it possible to improve your character?
There are two types of people; some are blessed by Allah to have naturally a noble character and others have to develop it by training themselves with knowledge and effort.
An example is people who are very calm by nature and people who easily get angry. It takes the latter struggle and practice to restrain their anger and gain the reward from Allah.
An example is the companion Ashj ʻAbul al-Qayis to whom the Prophet said:
You have two qualities which Allah and His messenger love – forbearance and ease.
In another narration, Ashj asked the Prophet:
“Are these qualities that I have acquired, or did Allah fashion me this way?”
The Prophet responded:
Allah created you that way.
Upon hearing this Ashj responded:
“All praise be to Allah who created me with two characteristics beloved to Him and His messenger!”
So thank Allah for the qualities He blessed you with!
The Prophet said:
I was sent only to complete noble character.
This means having a noble character, inside and outside, is within reach for all of us!
So How to Attain Good Character?
By learning and practicing. Good character is based on five important qualities: Knowledge; A willingness to change; Patience; Good nature; Sound submission – Islam. (Ibn ul Qayyim)
Here are some practical tips on how to strive for a good character:
1. Be sincere in asking Allah to give you good character; make dua day and night!
2. Be patient and keep trying; fight your nafs to leave lying, bad words, bad environments, etc.
3. Surround yourself with people of good character; make dua Allah brings righteous people on your path.
4. Accept advice and seek forgiveness from others; if your mother says, “my son, don’t say that”, you should listen to her, and don’t be arrogant. Arrogance is rejecting truth, even if it is from your child, or your wife. You will not enter Paradise if there is even a grain of arrogance in your heart. Even if it is a disbeliever who corrects your mistake, accept his advice.
5. Read books about good character; look in the Seerah, it was said:
I don’t beautify Muhammad by my words, rather he beautifies my words.
Try to use this dua made by the Prophet (peace be upon him) from now on.
Oh Allah, guide us to the best of character, none guides to it except You! And turn away from us evil character, for none can turn it away from us except You.