5 Ways to Live a Greener Life as a Muslim20 Nov 2021
Interestingly, the colour green has a long traditional association with the religion of Islam. For instance, the green of the Pakistani flag represents the Muslim majority population in Pakistan. The term going green means to practice a more environmentally friendly lifestyle. Below are five ways to live a greener life as a Muslim.
1. Planting Trees
“If the Hour (the day of Resurrection) is about to be established and one of you was holding a palm shoot, let him take advantage of even one second before the Hour is established to plant it.” – Al-Albani.
“If a Muslim plants a tree or sows seeds, and then a bird, or a person or an animal eats from it, it is regarded as a charitable gift (sadaqah) for him.” – Imam Bukhari.
The idea of cultivating the land is an important part of our faith. And planting trees is certainly one way we can not only give continued charity but also help the environment. Given that trees absorb harmful gases such as carbon dioxide. As such, research indicates that one way to tackle the climate crisis can be to plant more trees. The other benefits of trees according to the woodland trust is that they can help prevent flooding, reduce city temperature, reduce pollution and keep our soil nutrient-rich.
2. Preserving Water
The average person uses six to nine litres of water while making ablution or wudhu. The Quran and Sunna reflect the importance of careful water usage.
“O children of Adam, take your adornment to every mosque. Eat and drink but be not excessive. Indeed, He does not like those who commit excess.” [7:31]
“Do not waste even if performing ablution on the bank of a fast-flowing large river.” [Sunan Ibn Majah].
3. Eco-Friendly Architecture
‘…It was God who brought you into being from the earth and settled you therein to cultivate it…’ [11:61].
One great example of eco-friendly Architecture can be seen by the Cambridge Muslim Mosque. This is the first mosque in the UK that was specifically designed with a focus on sustainability. It utilises many environmentally friendly features in its design. For instance, energy efficient LED lights, photovoltaic panels on its roof, and even a large bike rack for up to 300 bicycles.
4. Cleaning pathways
Littering is a common issue we witness on a day-to-day basis. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said that: “Removing harmful things from the road is an act of charity (sadaqah).”
Therefore, removing littered waste, stones, or any obstructions to your pathway is not only considered an act of charity but also helps the environment.
5. Being Mindful of the Rights of Animals
“A man felt very thirsty while he was on the way, there he came across a well. He went down the well, quenched his thirst, and came out. Meanwhile, he saw a dog panting and licking mud because of excessive thirst. He said to himself, “This dog is suffering from thirst as I did.” So, he went down the well again, filled his shoe with water, held it with his mouth, and watered the dog. Allah appreciated him for that deed and forgave him.” The Companions said, “O Allah’s Messenger! Is there a reward for us in serving the animals?” He replied: “There is a reward for serving any living being.” – Imam Bukhari
This indicates the importance of caring for any living being including animals. This can also be extended to the fish in the sea who are also living beings that are under threat from our plastic use. Substituting plastic bags for fabric ones is also another way for us to attempt to curtail this problem