Volume 3, Book 43, Number 643:
Abu Huraira (radiallaahu `anhu) said, “Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu `alayhi wasallam) said, ‘No-one should prevent his neighbor from fixing a wooden peg in his wall.” Abu Huraira (radiallaahu `anhu) said (to his companions), “Why do I find you averse to it? By Allah, I certainly will narrate it to you.”
There are two sides to the way we can understand the rights of neighbors in Islam. One, showing kindness on your part, sharing with them and visiting them etc. Two, if you get disturbed or annoyed because of them, you be lenient and forgiving, overlook and move on. So if they’re remodeling the house next door, try ear plugs instead of cursing them r the like. :)
Islam warns against annoying one’s neighbors or treating them badly. The Messenger (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) explained that this would lead to being deprived of Paradise: “He will not enter Paradise from whose harm his neighbor is not safe.” (Agreed upon. Narrated by Muslim, 64).
Having said all that, I sometimes wonder how selfish we are. In this fast-paced world, we are so swamped with work and deadlines and our own lives that we don’t even know who lives next door! We don’t even know their names, visiting them when they’re sick is out of the question. Isn’t village life better than this, where neighbors are like family? They can walk in whenever they feel like because there are people to welcome them and treat them as guests. Now that is the cool kind of neighborhood.
Narrated Abu Sa’id:
The Prophet said, (what is ascribed to him in the following Hadith 488):
Narrated Abu Salih As-Samman:
I saw Abu Said Al-Khudri praying on a Friday, behind something which acted as a Sutra. A young man from Bani Abi Mu’ait, wanted to pass in front of him, but Abu Said repulsed him with a push on his chest. Finding no alternative he again tried to pass but Abu Said pushed him with a greater force. The young man abused Abu Said and went to Marwan and lodged a complaint against Abu Said and Abu Said followed the young man to Marwan who asked him, “O Abu Said! What has happened between you and the son of your brother?” Abu Sa’id said to him, “I heard the Prophet saying, ‘If anybody amongst you is praying behind something as a Sutra and somebody tries to pass in front of him, then he should repulse him and if he refuses, he should use force against him for he is a satan.‘ “
For the person who’s praying, don’t let anyone disturb your salah by crossing your prayer space. According to Prophet (SAW)’s saying, you can use force against him if he refuses to leave you alone.
For the one who’s crossing someone’s prayer space, stop doing so. This Hadith will explain why:
Narrated Busr bin Said:
that Zaid bin Khalid sent him to Abi Juhaim to ask him what he had heard from Allah’s Apostle about a person passing in front of another person who was praying. Abu Juhaim replied, “Allah’s Apostle said, ‘If the person who passes in front of another person in prayer knew the magnitude of his sin he would prefer to wait for 40 (days, months or years) rather than to pass in front of him.” Abu An-Nadr said, “I do not remember exactly whether he said 40 days, months or years.”
Can you imagine the magnitude of his sin, that he prefers to wait for 40 (days even)? Crossing one’s prayer space (a matter of taking two steps) seems like such a small thing but it’s huge in Allah’s opinion.
Crossing someone’s prayer space is forbidden because it disturbs their salah. Think, what are some other ways in which we knowingly or unknowingly disturb other people’s salah? (Example: talking out loud.)