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IDLE TALK

All praise be to Allah.

It is reported that Ya’la b. Ubayd said: -

We entered upon Ibn Suqah, who said: 'O nephew, let me relate to you something that will hopefully benefit you, for it benefited me... Ata b. Abi Rabah once said to us the following: -

"Those before you used to consider idle talk to be anything other than the Book of Allah, or the enjoining of good, or the forbidding of evil, or speaking for the sake of your basic living needs. Do you deny that there are recording angels appointed over you? Sitting on your right and your left? And that never is a word spoken of yours except there is an observer prepared to record in clear detail? Are you not afraid and ashamed that your record of words and deeds be spread open only to discover that there is nothing of the hereafter in the words you speak? -

[Al-Dhahabī, Siyar A’lām Al-Nubalā` 5:86]

O Ummah of Muhammad (peace be upon him) refrain from idle talk for it is the door to the evil. No idle talk is beneficial to a man. It leads to more grave sins. If you have nothing good to say, then remain silent. All the things about the issues that doesn’t concern us, that doesn’t yield any benefit must not be indulged into. Idle talks often leads to backbiting and gossiping which are grievous and doom a person to hell. An idle talk not only makes you sinful but also erases your good deeds.

Moreover, the one who does not keep their tongues in check, fall prey to devils whispers and the devil causes them to say evil and vile things. The level of iman drops. Truly, no one escapes the evil of the tongue except those who restrict it to the constraints of Sharee'ah, using it only to utter what is beneficial for them in this life and the Hereafter, while preventing it from uttering anything that may bring any harm, sooner or later.

That is why the Prophet, sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, said, as narrated by Mu'aath, may Allah be pleased with him: “Could anything else cast people in the Hellfire face down” – in another version, “on their noses” – “except the harvests of their tongues?”

This hadith indicates that the most common cause for people to enter hell is sinful utterance if their tongues.

And idle talk includes shirk, which is the greatest sin in front of Allah. We must understand that ignorantly speaking of Allah and his messenger, lying, backbiting and gossiping. It includes singing stupid songs and other major and minor sins. We must be mindful of what we speak.

The Prophet, sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, said: “A Muslim is the one who avoids harming other Muslims with his tongue and hand.”

He, sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, also said: “Whoever believes in Allah, The Almighty, and the Last Day, should utter good words or remain silent.”

‘Abdullaah Ibn Mas‘ood, may Allah be pleased with him, would reportedly say: “By Allah, nothing needs prolonged confinement more than my tongue.” He also used to say, “O my tongue, say good words and you will succeed and speak no evil and you will be secure; otherwise, you will regret.”

Another Companion, Abu Ad-Dardaa’, may Allah be pleased with him, said, “Protect your ears from your mouth; indeed, you have two ears and one mouth, in order to hear more than you talk.”

So a Muslim must keep himself safe from the idle talk and useless things lest he is doomed to hell. Keep in mind that Allah is watching all, and he has appointed two angels with each person who records everything that he does and says in detail. Remember, none of what you say will be left, you will be answerable to each and everything.

May Allah protect us from the harms of tongue.

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