Some people often confuse the meanings of hypocrisy, politeness and flattery, and the reason for that is the failure to understand the true meanings of brotherhood and sincere friendship. In their minds they do not separate truth and falsehood, good conduct and bad.
Ibn ‘Aqeel said: Hypocrisy means showing a good face whilst concealing bad intentions, and harbouring ill will whilst appearing good in order to cause harm. What the verse refers to is showing a good attitude in response to a bad one for the purpose of changing it to a good one.
From this it may be understood that hypocrisy means concealing ill will whilst making a show of goodwill in order to cause harm and evil. The one who shows a good attitude in response to bad treatment in order to remove evil is not a hypocrite, rather he is trying to put things right. Have you not heard the words of Allaah “then verily he, between whom and you there was enmity, (will become) as though he was a close friend”? This is done in order to soften hearts, ward off enmity, extinguish the flames of hatred, create love and correct beliefs. This is how one makes friends and wins hearts. (Al-Adaab al-Shar’iyyah (1/50, 51))
Hence politeness is part of a good attitude, and the scholars said a great deal about it.
Ibn Battaal (may Allaah have mercy on him) said: Politeness is part of the attitude of the believers, and it is lowering the wing of humility to people, speaking gently, and not speaking harshly to them, which are among the best means of creating harmony. (Fath al-Baari (10/528))