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Guarding the tongue

Speech is a reflection of the character of a person and says much about who we are. It is an extension of what is in the heart.

Our beloved Nabi (Salallahu Alaihi Wasallam) was an example of the best speech and character. Nabi never shouted, or used vulgar language. He was not abusive to anyone and spoke with dignity and integrity.

Regrettably, today, people speak loosely to their parents, teachers, elders, spouses, employees, students and fellow humans. Shouting, screaming, harshness and vulgarity has become common. Some make derogatory and racial statements about others, sometimes publicly.

More dangerous and problematic is when people publicly make irresponsible and derogatory remarks about fellow Muslims. This is contrary to the teachings of the Qur’an and Sunnah and serves to sow division in the Ummah.

The Noble Qur’an warns us not to label people and to avoid causing hurt and offense to others. In Surah Hujurat, the Qur’an advises us, Do not ridicule people - Do not insult one another - Do not label each other with offensive names - Do not backbite about each other.

Hazrat Abu Hurayrah (R) narrates that Rasulullah (Salallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said, “Whoever believes in Allah and the last day, should speak only that which is good or remain silent.” (Sahih Bukhari)

These are the beautiful teachings of Islam that serve to create harmony and cohesion in a community.

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