A group is several interdependent and interacting persons. Muslims are enjoined to mobilize
in groups[i]. Group must be solid[ii]. Cooperation in doing good is the basis for group work[iii].
Similarity is the basis for group formation[iv]. People are attracted to those like themselves[v]. Persons who have nothing in common or who do not share common interests can not form
a successful group. Members of a group should have empathy for one another being the similitude of one body or one physiological
entity[vi]. Members should support one another so that they stand together like a strong wall. They
are like a building whose different parts reinforce one another[vii]. Separation from group is condemned[viii]. Islam encourages working in groups but makes it clear that seclusion is better than
The excellence of work in a group is illustrated by congregational prayer whose reward is 25
times that of a solitary prayer[x]. People in a group can share resources especially at times of scarcity[xi]. A group must adhere to and respect some norms. Allowing some members to break the norms
will destroy the group[xii].
There must be openness and trust in the group. Secrecy and concealment destroy groups[xiii]. Secret talks between some members of the group are prohibited[xiv].
Group formation has 4 stages: forming (acquaintance and learning to accept one another), storming
(emotions and tensions), initial integration (start of normal functioning), total integration (full functioning), and dissolution.
Mature groups have group identity, optimized feedback, decision-making procedures, cohesion,
flexibility of organization, resource utilization, communication, clear accepted goals, interdependence, participation, and
acceptance of minority views.
Groups fail when constituted on the wrong basis, when members cannot communicate, when there
is no commonality (interests, attitudes, and goals), and when they have diseases of hasad,
nifaq, namiimah, gaybah, kadhb, riyah, kibriyah, hubb al riyasa, tajassus, and dhun al soo.
An effective group
follows the Qur'an and sunnat, members feel secure and not suppressed, members understand and practice sincere group dynamics,
members are competent and are committed to the group and the leadership.
[iv] (Bukhari 4:348, hadith #)
[v] (Bukhari 8:122-123, hadith # 196)
[vi] (Muslim 3: 1368, Chapter 1067, Hadith # 6258)
[vii] (Bukhari 8:34, hadith #55)
[viii] (Abu Daud 3:1332, Chapter 1706, Hadith # 4740)
[ix] (Bukhari 8:332, hadith # 502)
[x] (Hadith No. 620" Bukhari 1:277, hadith # 466, Muslim 1:314, Chapter 234, Hadith #1360, Bukhari
1:351, hadith # 618)
[xi] (Bukhari 3:402, hadith # 666, Bukhari 3:400-401, hadith # 663)
[xii] (Bukhari 3:406, hadith # 673)