When Silence is Golden ๐Ÿ”ธ

ุจุณู… ุงู„ู„ู‡ ุงู„ุฑุญู…ู† ุงู„ุฑุญูŠู…

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From the noble jawaami’ul kalim (concise speech [with expansive meaning]) of the Messenger of Allah ๏ทบ is the renowned hadeeth:

ู…ู† ูƒุงู† ูŠุคู…ู† ุจุงู„ู„ู‡ ูˆุงู„ูŠูˆู… ุงู„ุขุฎุฑุŒ ูู„ูŠู‚ู„ ุฎูŠุฑู‹ุงุŒ ุฃูˆ ู„ูŠุตู…ุช

โ He who believes in Allah and the Last Day must either speak good or remain silent. โžย [1]

Ibn Hibban said in his ‘Rawdatul ‘Uqala’:

ุงู„ูˆุงุฌุจ ุนู„ู‰ ุงู„ุนุงู‚ู„ ุฃู† ูŠู„ุฒู… ุงู„ุตู…ุช ุฅู„ู‰ ุฃู† ูŠู„ุฒู…ู‡ ุงู„ุชูƒู„ู… ูู…ุง ุฃูƒุซุฑ ู…ู† ู†ุฏู… ุฅุฐุง ู†ุทู‚ ูˆุฃู‚ู„ ู…ู† ูŠู†ุฏู… ุฅุฐุง ุณูƒุช ูˆุฃุทูˆู„ ุงู„ู†ุงุณ ุดู‚ุงุก ูˆุฃุนุธู…ู‡ู… ุจู„ุงุก ู…ู† ุงุจุชู„ู‰ ุจู„ุณุงู† ู…ุทู„ู‚ ูˆูุคุงุก ู…ุทุจู‚

“It is incumbent on the intelligent (and wise person) to (maintain the need of) remaining silent than having to speak. Because much remorse lies in uttering speech, while there’s less regret if one is silent. People’s misery is lengthened and greatly afflicted by their calamitous tongues… “ [2]

Thus, much of people’s sins are borne from the tongue, and many trespasses are carried out due to unnecessarily long periods of (social) gatherings. It’s prudent to conclude your gatherings swiftly and end with virtuous words, otherwise curiosities settle in. Imam al-Zuhri said:

ุฅุฐุง ุทุงู„ ุงู„ู…ุฌู„ุณ ูƒุงู† ู„ู„ุดูŠุทุงู† ููŠู‡ ู†ุตูŠุจ

“If your gatherings become long, shaytan then takes his share from them.” [3]

Ibn Taymiyyah highlighted a basic outline of how to assess one’s need to speak. He said:

โ€ุงู„ุชูƒู„ู‘ู… ุจุงู„ุฎูŠุฑ ุฎูŠุฑูŒ ู…ู† ุงู„ุณูƒูˆุช ุนู†ู‡ ูˆุงู„ุตู…ุชู ุนู† ุงู„ุดุฑูู‘ ุฎูŠุฑูŒ ู…ู† ุงู„ุชูƒู„ู‘ู… ุจู‡

“To speak well is better than remaining silent (about something), and keeping silent from (uttering) evil is better than speaking (about it).” [4]

When we have nothing of benefit to say, silence is golden. Mu’ad ibn Jabal asked the Prophet ๏ทบ to inform him of good deeds that would admit him into Paradise and distance him from the Hellfire. The Prophet ๏ทบ mentioned to him the virtues of many good deeds, and then added, “Shall I inform you of the foundation of all of that?” He took hold of his tongue and said, “Restrain yourself from this.”

Mu’adh asked, “O Prophet of Allah! Are we held to task for the things that we say?” The Prophet ๏ทบ replied:

ุซูŽูƒูู„ูŽุชู’ูƒูŽ ุฃูู…ู‘ููƒูŽ ูŠูŽุง ู…ูุนูŽุงุฐู ุŒ ูˆูŽู‡ูŽู„ู’ ูŠูŽูƒูุจู‘ู ุงู„ู†ู‘ูŽุงุณูŽ ูููŠ ุงู„ู†ู‘ูŽุงุฑู ุนูŽู„ูŽู‰ ูˆูุฌููˆู‡ูู‡ูู…ู’ ุฃูŽูˆู’ ุนูŽู„ูŽู‰ ู…ูŽู†ูŽุงุฎูุฑูู‡ูู…ู’ ุฅูู„ุง ุญูŽุตูŽุงุฆูุฏู ุฃูŽู„ู’ุณูู†ูŽุชูู‡ูู…ู’ ุŸ

โ May your mother be bereaved of you, O Mu’adh! Does anything cause people to fall headlong into the Hellfire except the harvests of their tongues? โž [5]

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May Allah grant us wisdom and foresight in weighing the benefits of advantages when considering to speak or remain silent. Ameen.

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References:

[1] Agreed upon
[2] Rawdatul ‘Uqala’ (1/47)
[3] Hilyat al-Awliya’, 1/366 (#1413)
[4] Majmu’ al-Fatawa (25/158)
[5] Al-Tirmidhi, 2616; who graded it hasan saheeh

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