Home Quranet Chapter 11 What can we say to two who are quarreling?
What can we say to two who are quarreling?
Chapter 11

يَسْأَلُونَكَ عَنِ الأَنفَالِ قُلِ الأَنفَالُ لِلّهِ وَالرَّسُولِ فَاتَّقُواْ اللّهَ وَأَصْلِحُواْ ذَاتَ بِيْنِكُمْ وَأَطِيعُواْ اللّهَ وَرَسُولَهُ إِن كُنتُم مُّؤْمِنِينَ (سورۃ الانفال, آية 1)

They ask thee concerning (things taken as) spoils of war. Say: "(such) spoils are at the disposal of Allah and the Messenger. So fear Allah, and keep straight the relations between yourselves: Obey Allah and His Messenger, if ye do believe. (Surah 8, Verse 1)

A bitter quarrel broke out between two good friends, sixth-graders. They stopped talking to one another and sought every possible opportunity to provoke one another. During an education lesson, the teacher asked the pupils to express their opinion on a certain subject. The two boys expressed opposing views, began to argue and in the end quarreled out loud. The teacher summoned them for a talk. He realized that each bore a grudge against the other and was waiting for the moment when he could take revenge. He reminded them that they had once been good friends who spent hours together and asked them to set aside their resentments and make peace. "If you want to succeed in life", he told them, "you must learn to accept other people's opinions even if they make youand angry. Do you know the Quran verse which commands people to make peace?" The pupils said they did not know it. He took out the Quran and read to them: "They ask thee concerning (things taken as) spoils of war. Say: "(such) spoils are at the disposal of Allah and the Messenger. So fear Allah, and keep straight the relations between yourselves: Obey Allah and His Messenger, if ye do believe". He emphasized the command to ‘keep straight relations between yourselves" and added: "God commands you to make peace and to obey the voice of the Prophet and of adults because to make peace is a sign of belief and through belief you can succeed in life. When you are united you have no problem in accepting the opinions of the other". The two boys listened, and then they looked at one another and embraced.

Explanation: it is indeed fear of God, as the verse says, which enables the friends to make peace. Fear of the authority figure in the family, the father, enables children to unite because if he orders them to do so, they will be willing to abandon their anger. The teacher was right to use this verse in order to bring the boys together. One way of resolving a dispute between friends is to sit down with them and begin clarifying what exactly happened and who did what. Such a solution, which opens wounds, can be helpful because it makes it easier to understand why each of them was offended and to draw conclusions for the future. But sometimes it can cause more damage than good. The wounds are reopened and do not heal, the anger surfaces again and there is no resolution. Another way to achieve conciliation is to utilize the authority of the Quran. It reminds them that they are brothers and exhorts them to make peace. Thus Allah unites his children and does not utilize the "divide and rule" method adopted by certain parents who want their children to squabble in order to reinforce their own authority.