When taking permission to enter someone’s house, then guard your eyes from setting on the interior of that person’s house (something that should be kept hidden). Do not stand right in front of the door; but rather stand on the right or the left. Do not even hang about talking away for long periods at somebody’s doorstep.
The reason for seeking permission is for the sake of your sight. This is the wisdom behind it that you do not see something you are not meant to see. If somebody does this, it is as though he has already entered. Physically you may be outside, but your eyes are inside, the main part of you has entered and this is a great sin.
Also, remove your shoes in the correct place and place it in the assigned area in an appropriate manner. The etiquette of removing and wearing your shoes is that you put your right shoe first and remove the left shoe first. Before entering your own house or someone’s house, look at your shoes, if you see dirt on your shoes from the effect of the road you have been walking on (dirt, mud due to rain), be careful. You do not want to pollute a person’s carpet with your dirty shoes. If you see filth, then remove it from both your shoes and scrub them against the ground so that the dirt is removed.
Whatever the host offers you, accept it wholeheartedly. It could be a particular seat, a cushion or a stool. Accept whatever the host gives you and accept it gracefully.
One should not sit in the place which belongs to the host. Most people have their favourite places within their houses (their normal place where they sit). The last thing one would want to do is to sit in the place of the host, unless he invites you to sit in his place.
If other guests enter the room and no seats remain, we should be willing to give preference to others and give up our seats. Especially if an elder person or a person of knowledge enters the room, we should stand up and give up our seat.
One must not open a closed closet, look inside a box, or open a wallet or even a wrapped package, including anything that many be covered. This goes against the trust the host has granted you, and this is a sign of a hypocrite.
Respecting one’s parents is one of the central obligations of Islam. However, there is a difference between respect and obedience. One has to be good to one’s parents even if they do not show you kindness. One must not obey them when they instruct you to disobey Allah, but being good towards them is still necessary. Also, one should stand up in their honour. One should not call parents by their name
Imam Ibn Abdul Bar (from Qurtuba [spain]) defined BIRR as: “being gentle / not speaking loudly in their presence, and being soft in your speech, and not looking at ones parents except with absolute love and respect and when talking to them, not raising your voice over their voice.”
One should not speak in a gathering before one’s father. One should try and avoid their displeasure, and try one’s utmost best in pleasing them. Making parents happy is one of the greatest acts of bir.
The visitor and the host both have rights and responsibilities. As a host, when a guest comes to visit you, especially overnight, know the etiquettes of their hospitality. Be extremely hospitable towards them without over exaggeration in providing food and drink. The Sunnah is to be moderate in this regard.
Make the seat of the guest clean, pleasant and comfortable, ensure the house is clean. If they are sleeping or taking an afternoon nap, make their sleeping room clean, inform them of the Qiblah in the house, indicate to them where the bathroom is etc. The whole reason for doing this is to make the visitor feel welcomed.
When you present a towel/handkerchief for wiping hands and face, let it be clean and other than the one you and your family use. It is good to forward him some fragrance to apply to himself, also give a mirror so your guest can look at himself and remain clean and look good as this is also a part of Islamic teachings. Let the means of purification (i.e. toiletries) be pure. Before your guest enters the bathroom, remove all inappropriate items that your guest could see.
Be careful in the peace and comfort of your guest, especially whilst sleeping. Keep him away from loud noise and crying of your children. If the guest is a male, keep him far away from the clothing of women especially underwear. They should not be apparent and visible; as this is the decency that is required.
Do not let your informal relationship and companionship an excuse to become complacent and negligent in dealing with your guest. Never hint to your guest in a way that makes them guilty for coming to your house. The host must make the guest feel at ease and not feel unwanted. Do not ask the guest to start helping you with household chores, but if they insist, let them but don’t let them do too much.
Great emphasis lies on visiting the sick. In the books of hadith, chapters are dedicated exclusively to this topic. It is a right of a Muslim that you visit them when they are sick. In doing so, you are preserving and nourishing the bond of brotherhood and sisterhood. The one who is eager to increase his hasanat (good rewards) will never neglect the opportunity to visit the ill and sick.
When you visit the ill do not forget the etiquettes, so that the visit raises the moral of the ill and sick person and it helps to lessen their pain and increase Sabr and hoping of reward. If you neglect these adaab, it may even be negative rather than being positive.
One should not sit by the ill for a long time, as the ill person is not in a good state. But there are exceptions; if you are very close to the ill person and he enjoys your company, then the stay may be longer. He has certain situations of illness which do not require that you sit by him for a long time. When you visit, sit where you are told to sit, as the person knows where it is good to sit.
When visiting the sick, wear clean clothes and have a good pleasant odour and fragrance around you so the ill becomes refreshed by seeing and smelling something pleasant but do not go to extremes in looking good and applying scent.
The visitor must not talk about issues that will distress the ill and sick person, and do not inquire the details of the person’s illness because that will not benefit the ill person. The visitor should not give his own advice about his illness unless he is a doctor and a specialist in the field.The visitor should not object to the doctor’s medication especially in front of the patient, because this will place doubt into the heart and mind of the ill person of the doctor’s prescription.
The ill person should remember that they should not complain too much, as being ill is also a blessing from Allah Most High. A means of removal of sins in this world, and purification from sins.