Futuwwah is the way of the fata. In Arabic, fata literally means a handsome, brave youth. After the enlightenment of Islam, following the use of the word in the Holy Koran, fata (plural: fityan) came to mean the ideal, noble, and perfect man whose hospitality and generosity would extend until he had nothing left for himself; a man who would give all, including his life, for the sake of his friends. According to the Sufis, Futuwwah is a code of honorable conduct that follows the example of the prophets, saints, sages, and the intimate friends and lovers of Allah.
The traditional example of generosity is the prophet Abraham, peace be upon him, who readily accepted the command to sacrifice his son for Allah's sake. He is also a model of hospitality who shared his meals with guests all his life and never ate alone. The prophet Joseph, peace be upon him, is an example of mercy, for he pardoned his brothers, who tried to kill him, and a model of honor, for he resisted the advances of a married woman, Zulaykha, who was feminine beauty personified. The principles of character of the four divinely guided caliphes, the successors of the Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings be upon him, also served as guides to Futuwwah; the loyalty of Abu Bakr, the justice of 'Umar, the reserve and modesty of 'Uthman, and the bravery of 'Ali, may Allah be pleased with them all.
The all-encompassing symbol of the way of Futuwwah is the divinely guided life and character of the final prophet, Muhammad Mustafa, may Allah's peace and blessings be upon him, whose perfection is the goal of Sufism. The Sufi aims to abandon all improper behavior and to acquire and exercise, always and under all circumstances, the best behavior proper to human beings; for God created man "for Himself" as His "supreme creation," "in the fairest form." As He declares in His Holy Koran, "We have indeed honored the children of Adam.