By Masooma Malik
Lost in the hustle of this world, we have forgotten the basic etiquette of almost everything. There are always some standards, practiced by societies and there are a set of values given by the ultimate higher authority, Allah S.W.T. Sometimes, the two go hand in hand, but often they contradict.
We silently adore and idealize a friend , who is chatty, funny, and entertains all those around them with their charm and wit. We try to imitate that relative, who is outspoken- such that when they speak, they outclass others’ opinions. He or she may sound harsh but their point is clear. The biggest trolls on social media amuse us the most. In the name of entertainment and argument, we have lowered the standards of speech, humor, criticism and conversation.
Our style of speaking and choice of words definitely have a significant effect upon others that in return effect our Akhirah. The Prophet(s) said:
“A slave (of Allah) may utter a word which pleases Allah without giving it much importance, and because of that Allah will raise him to degrees (of reward). A slave (of Allah) may utter a word (carelessly) which displeases Allah without thinking of its gravity and because of that he will be thrown into the Hell-Fire.” (Sahih al-Bukhari 6478)
It is our speech that may take us to Jannah or throw us into Hellfire. If used effectively it will help us earn the ultimate success of the next world. There are numerous ahadith that shed light on the importance of being conscious of what and how we speak. Therefore, we should try not to become heedless in our speech. May we not be included among the ones who are thrown into hellfire because of their malign speech. Ameen!
Let’s reflect on how we should be using the blessing of speech.
First of all, it is not necessary to talk excessively in order to seek everyone’s attention. The Prophet (PBUH) was not an excessive talker nor did he ever speak vainly. And yet, when he spoke, everybody was attentive to his words.
He advised us:
” …whoever believes in Allah and the Last Day, should speak what is good or keep silent.” (Sahih al-Bukhari 6136)
Secondly, one should only speak when he has something good to share otherwise, silence is a better option because no good ever comes out of aimless talking.
Our deen puts a great deal of emphasis on the importance of good speech.
The more we speak, the more are the chances that we might utter some words which may hurt others, backbite, pass comments, or share something fabricated.
Being silent, when our opinion is not necessary is better because it makes us a good listener, helps us to analyze and understand the situation well and gives us time for self-reflection.
Mostly, we, out of emotions, jump into arguments and our impatience results in either messing up our relations or sometimes it leaves us in a state of embarrassment. So, we should carefully calculate when there is a need for us to speak. In the beginning, we may find this difficult but after practice it is going to grant us a lot of mental peace.
The most important thing about handling our speech is that it will not only give us worldly benefits rather, we also get the guarantee of Jannah by Prophet Muhammad.
As he said,
“Whoever can guarantee (the chastity of) what is between his two jaw-bones and what is between his two legs (i.e. his tongue and his private parts), I guarantee Paradise for him.” (Sahih al-Bukhari 6474).
When we guard our tongues from malicious talk and heartless gossiping, we may lose favour with some people in our circle. But remember, when the trends of society are flaky and obeying them amounts to nothing. What really matters is when we obey Allah (SWT), even in the face of contrary circumstances.