What is the connection between repentance and the rights of others?

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SHAFAQNA – When I was a theology student, I used to go to different meetings, and in some occasions, some people used to talk about this person or that person, and you suddenly see yourself get involved. In one occasion when I was present, some people talked behind the late Grand Ayatollah Hojjat (RA) who was a professor of the seminary and I attended his classes for years. I felt it is not right, and why should I be in such a position? One day I went to his house and knocked and he gave permission for me to enter. I remember he had a hat on and was leaning on a cushion (he was old and had been ill; 2-3 years before his death). I said: I have come to say something to you. He asked: What is it? I replied: I talked behind your back, not a lot, I heard a lot, and I regret to take part in that meeting. I have come to say that I intend not to take part in such meetings again, and ask for your forgiveness. As he was a generous and forgiving person said: Talking behind people like me, are in two kinds; one kind is to insult Islam, and the other is about the person. I said: I have not said anything to insult Islam, and the talk was about you. So, he said: I forgive. If the human being wants to repent, must pay for the rights of others. If it is the duty of someone to pay Zakat and he has not paid it, the rights of people are round his neck (the rights of people are on him; he is responsible), and must pay it; and the repentance cannot happen just by saying: I repent [1]!

[1] Goftarhaye Ma’anavi, Martyr Mortaza Motahhari (RA), Page 145.

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