Courtesy means showing politeness and gentleness in one’s behavior while dealing with people in our daily routine. Dealing with proper manners and polite behavior is a social proper act. For instance showing respect for others, apologizing when you do something wrong to someone, respecting the needs of others and being kind to someone are the best examples of courtesy. In simple words courtesy is a polite remark or a considerate act. It is a gesture of civility and good manner. Courtesy is a great rectitude in life of a person.
“Gratitude is the most exquisite form of courtesy”Jacques Maritain.
Another word for courtesy is civility and the one who shows courtesy is known as courteous man. Courtesy demands humbleness and decency in conversations and behaviors. Courtesy can be defined as the aptitude of dealing others with affection and respect. It is an act of dignity by being considerate, responsive and kind in our dealings with others. The act of civility cost nothing but rewards a lot in return. A civilized and courteous person is liked and bears a soft spot in everyone’s heart. This kind and courteous person is always loved by family and friends. Courtesy is the prominent trait of a person. Courtesy is a two way behavior. When you are kind to someone then you will also get kindness in return. So courtesy is the most preferable trait for being popular among the society. It can never be possible that one person is harsh and rude in his behavior while the other one is soft and kind.
“Courtesy costs nothing but brings a lot in return”
One of the remarkable examples of courtesy is to forgive people for their mistakes. A courteous person never minds the minor damages that someone does accidently. Other forms of courtesy in our everyday life are admiring others efforts, showing respect to elders and affection to Youngers, sacrificing for others and giving warm welcome to others. Courtesy and act of kindness not only enhance our personality in front of others but also owns a great noble mark on character. The first and foremost thing that matters is our character. A person with good moral character is always liked by others while an ill-mannered person is never liked and respected by anyone. Act of courtesy is free of class and race. It is a God gift to humanity. Courtesy never lives in huge explanations and long conversation but it lives in good deeds and noble actions. Courtesy adds charm to our behavior and conduct. A cultured person is always characterized by his polite and courteous manners.
“There can be no defense like elaborate courtesy”V. Lucas
Islam is religion of ethical codes and moral values. Muslims are always referred by good manners, truthfulness, respect and courtesy. The most important equipment of traveler of right way is good manner and noble deed. A person cannot be both kind and rude in his behavior at the same time. Devil was punished from God not because of lack of information and knowledge but because of ill manners. The subject of courtesy is to make people being conscious about their actions that are being watched by Divine. So acts like courtesy, elegance and modesty become natural part of their livings. The reason due to which human beings are superior to all creatures is good manners and civility. Human being becomes respectable in presence of Allah Almighty because of courtesy and being kind to His creatures. This is the reason behind the special place of good manners and courtesy in the hearts of friends of Allah Almighty. Many close friends of Allah Almighty defined “Sufism” as “good manners and courtesy”. Jalal u Din Rumi very elegantly states this reality in following lines
“Open your eyes and look carefully into the word of Allah from beginning to the end. The whole Qur’an, all of its verses, is but explanation of good manners.”
The friends of Allah Almighty got highest levels of spirituality just because of good manners and courtesy. Imam Rabbani states
“None can make progress towards union with Allah Almighty without complying with the measures of good manners. The way of great Sufis is composed of good manners from beginning to the end.”
Our beloved Holy Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) was always inclined to be gracious and kind hearted. Some of the key notes of His personality are courtesy, tenderness, simplicity, sympathy and generosity. Once he said to his wife: “0 ‘A’ishah! Never turn away any needy man from your door empty-handed. 0 ‘A’ishah! Love the poor; bring them near to you and God will bring you near to Him on the Day of Resurrection”. He also went much further on to say: “Seek me among your weak ones, for you are given provision, or you are given help only by reason of the presence of your weak ones”. He took a great interest in welfare of poor and needy people. He (PBUH) had great compassion for the people in trouble. The Prophet said
“One of the finest acts of kindness is for a man to treat his fathers’ friends in a kindly way after he has departed”
Courtesy makes societies worth living and peaceful. Numerous social evils, sense of individuality, quarrels and hatred are the outcomes of lack of courtesy in a society. Courtesy bring peace and calm. It welcomes smiles on faces of citizens. It is the way of bringing people closer to each other. We cannot live in smooth and social life without courtesy. Courtesy adorns our personality and builds durable and long lasting relations. Material wealth can be lost and stolen but an act of kindness will always stay with us. In order to achieve this goal of peaceful environment we need to be in company of good mannered and righteous believers.