بِسْمِ اللّهِ الرَّحْمنِ الرَّحِيْم
Verily, all praise is to Allah. We praise Him, seek His help and seek His forgiveness. We seek refuge in Allah from evils within our souls and harms of our deeds. Whomever Allah guides, there none to misguide. And whomever He sends astray, there none to guide. I bear witness that there is none worthy of worship except Allah alone, with no partner, and I bear witness that Muhammad is His servant and Messenger.
One of all the bounties and mercy of Allah, and endless gifts that he grants us, is our tongue. This beautiful bounty from Allah is taken as granted easily and often abused. Whether it is in the form of a slander or backbiting. Not realizing that many people are deprived the ability to speak. But it us who are tested by our speech. How are we taking care of this Ni'mah from Allah...
Backbiting is strictly prohibited in Islam and one can find evidence in the Quran and the Ahadith. Often backbiting is compared to one eating flesh of the dead.
Allah(swt) says in the Quran:
"O you who have believed, avoid much [negative] assumption. Indeed, some assumption issin. And do not spy or backbit each other. Would one of you like to eat the flesh of his brother when dead? You would detest it. And fear Allah; indeed, Allah is Accepting of repentance and Merciful. [Qur'an 49:12]
Just as one finds it rather repulsive and loathes the idea of eating the flesh of a dead human, one should also loathe the idea of backbiting. Just like one is forbidden so is the other.
Abu Huraira reported Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) as saying: '
Do you know what is backbiting? They (the Companions) said: Allah and His Messenger know best. Thereupon he (the Holy Prophet) said: Backbiting implies your talking about your brother in a manner which he does not like. It was said to him: What is your opinion about this that if I actually find (that failing) in my brother which I made a mention of? He said: If (that failing) is actually found (in him) what you assert, you in fact have backbitten him, and if that is not in him it is a slander. [Sahih Muslim Book 32, #6265]
Narated By Sahl bin Sa'd : The Prophet said,
"Whoever guarantees me (the chastity of) what is between his legs (i.e. his private parts), and what is between his jaws (i.e., his tongue), I guarantee him Paradise." [Sahih Bukhari Vol 8, Book 82, #799]
Yasir Qadhi says,'The tongue is but a small soft flesh. Yet is it capable of breaking the strongest bonds and destroying the most powerful of relationships.'
Muslims must exert to guard his tongue and avoid such things. Among the things that have been forbidden are:
1) Gheebah- or backbiting meaning speaking about a Muslim in his absense and saying things that he would not like be spreaded. One of the things that doesn't come into Gheebah is when one is praising someone in front of the people. Or, complaining to someone about what a person has done to him. Or, when he says about a someone which the latter doesn't mind.
2)Buhtaan- or slander meaning saying false things about a Muslim or lies about him.
3) Nameemah- or malicious gossip means telling one person what another said so they would cause friction between them.
It was narrated that Ibn ‘Abbaas said: The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) passed by two graves and said,
“They are being punished, but they are not being punished for anything that was difficult to avoid. One of them used to walk about spreading malicious gossip (nameemah), and the other used not to take precautions to avoid getting urine on himself when he urinated.” Then he called for a green branch, which he split in two and planted a piece on each grave, and said, “May their torment be reduced so long as these do not dry out.”
Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 213; Muslim, 292
Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah said:
"Whoever wrongs a person by slandering him, backbiting about him or insulting him, then repents, Allaah will accept his repentance, but if the one who was wronged finds out about that, he has the right to settle the score. But if he slandered him or backbit about him and the person did not hear of that, then there are two views according to the scholars, both of which were narrated from Ahmad, the more correct of which is that he should not tell him that he spoke against him in his absence. It was said that he should rather speak well of him in his absence just as he spoke badly of him in his absence, as al-Hasan al-Basri said: the expiation for gheebah is to pray for forgiveness for the person about whom you backbit."
Majmoo’ al-Fataawa, 3/291
Abu Dawood narrated in his Sunan via Nawfal ibn Masaahiq from Sa’eed ibn Zayd that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said:
“The most prevalent kind of usury (riba) is going to lengths in talking unjustly against a Muslim’s honour.”
And he (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said:
“Your blood, your wealth and your honour are sacred among you, as sacred as this day of yours in this month of yours in this land of yours. Let those who are present convey it to those who are absent; perhaps he will convey it to one who has more understanding than he does.”
(Agreed upon, from the hadeeth of Abu Bakrah).
Sheikh Shaykh Sulaymaan ibn Naasir al-‘Alwaani said,
'One of the worse types of gheebah and one which is most emphatically forbidden it to look down upon a Muslim and do one’s utmost to insult him, show disrespect towards him and cast aspersions upon his honour. This is a blameworthy characteristic and a serious malady; it is one of the major sins and the one who does this is subject to the warning and a severe punishment.'
May Allah protect our tongue from such sin intentionally and unintentionally. Ameen