• Lamin Darboe, Leicester, UK

OPINION: THE DANGER OF  BACKBITING TO A COMMUNITY

Backbiting is one of the cardinal sins in Islam and its so dangerous that it can land a person in helfire even though he might be seen as a good believer in the eye of men.

Backbiting is a sign of weak eeman ( belief) and when it becomes a habit, even though a backbiter outwardly may appear as pious, know that he or she is faasik and zaalim (wrong doer).


Make no mistake, habitual Backbiting retard a person's eeman like cancer and it has the potential to nullify all his good deeds on the day of qiyama.

A sheik in khadeeja times stated:


"MAJOR sins are indeed the cause for all misery, evil and torment in this world and the hereafter. And the worst of all sins are those that are greatest in harm and danger to humanity. Among the destructive major sins are backbiting and slandering. These two sins are forbidden by Allah because they sow enmity, evil and discord among people and lead to destruction" - From khadeeja times.


Allah subhanah watallah said in the Quran


Surah Al-Hujraat, Verse 12:

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا اجْتَنِبُوا كَثِيرًا مِّنَ الظَّنِّ إِنَّ بَعْضَ الظَّنِّ إِثْمٌ وَلَا تَجَسَّسُوا وَلَا يَغْتَب بَّعْضُكُم بَعْضًا أَيُحِبُّ أَحَدُكُمْ أَن يَأْكُلَ لَحْمَ أَخِيهِ مَيْتًا فَكَرِهْتُمُوهُ وَاتَّقُوا اللَّهَ إِنَّ اللَّهَ تَوَّابٌ رَّحِيمٌ

O you who believe! Avoid much suspicions, indeed some suspicions are sins. And spy not, neither backbite one another. Would one of you like to eat the flesh of his dead brother? You would hate it (so hate backbiting). And fear Allah. Verily, Allah is the One Who accepts repentance, Most Merciful.


Commenting on the Verse a sheik said


You would hate it (so hate backbiting). And fear Allah, verily, Allah is the One who accepts repentance, Most Merciful" (Quran 49: 12) In this verse, Allah strongly forbids backbiting, and he compares the backbiter to one who eats the flesh of his dead brothe


WHAT IS BACKBITING


Rasuloollah describe what is back biting and many of us think it is only mentioning bad things about a person in his or absence but its more wicked than that...

"Abu Huraira reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said, “Do you know what backbiting is?” They said, “Allah and his messenger know best.” The Prophet said, “To mention your brother in a way he dislikes.” It was said, “What do you think if what I said about him is true?” The Prophet said, “If what you say about him is true, it is backbiting. If it is not true, it is slander.”


Source: Ṣaḥīḥ Muslim 2589


Grade: Sahih (authentic) according to Muslim


عَنْ أَبِي هُرَيْرَةَ أَنَّ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ قَالَ أَتَدْرُونَ مَا الْغِيبَةُ قَالُوا اللَّهُ وَرَسُولُهُ أَعْلَمُ قَالَ ذِكْرُكَ أَخَاكَ بِمَا يَكْرَهُ قِيلَ أَفَرَأَيْتَ إِنْ كَانَ فِي أَخِي مَا أَقُولُ قَالَ إِنْ كَانَ فِيهِ مَا تَقُولُ فَقَدْ اغْتَبْتَهُ وَإِنْ لَمْ يَكُنْ فِيهِ 


Even mentioning a thing about a person in his absence which may be true but when he or she hear it, may not like it,  is regarded as backing.  On the other hand if the thing you said about a person is not true, it's regarded as slander, which is even worst.

Allah declared,


Surah Al-Humaza, Verse 1:

وَيْلٌ لِّكُلِّ هُمَزَةٍ لُّمَزَةٍ


Woe to every slanderer and backbiter.

(English - Mohsin Khan)


He also said


Surah Al-Qalam, Verse 11:

هَمَّازٍ مَّشَّاءٍ بِنَمِيمٍ


A slanderer, going about with calumnies,

(English - Mohsin Khan)


Backbiting is a sin that angers Allah and He identified action of backbiting among the evil  characters of one of the worst enemies of the Prophet SAW called Wallid ibn Mughira. Its curious the way Allah gave the order of his evil qualities, slandered first and spreading tales.

A person who is habitual backbiter  is not satisfied with making a wicked statement but want to spread it in order  to darkened the image and personality of other people especially family members he or she has quarrel with.

That's why it's dangerous to make backbiter your friend especially those who enjoy backbiting as a pastime. They cannot sustain a chat or conversation without talking ill of other people.


NEVER TRUST A BACKBITER

One should be careful of such characters and keep a safe distance. It very unsafe  trusting them  because they are evil and spread evil. They create discord, distrust within the community. Not insignificant is their danger as they wreak havoc on family relationships, they break bonds, create suspicion and set up a brother against a brother.

The most astonishing thing is, most backbiters appear very credible and put a shiny  twist in their statements to appear credible, sympathetic and trustworthy.


They add chilly and spices to innocent statements or actions of their protagonist so that their audience can be entertained. Backbiters assume a form of local radio stations in the community, a WIFI that connect the nook and creeks of all gossip, as They unapologetically assume role of local news vendors, the Knower of all community issues, events, innuendos, personal politics, allegations. No prattle, buzz, grapevines, banter, scandal  escape them their radar ears.


They appears to know everything that happens between a father and son, man and wife, chief and the alkalo, even among good friends. They have magnetic ears with big amplifiers that captured even the most subtle murmurs only for them decorate, add spices and spread it.


The level of suspicion and badwill within communities is heart-wrenching and as a Muslim, we should all engage these undesirable elements by revealing their ugly acts, shaming them and if necessary exposing them. We shall not rely on their statements bwfore  establishing the facts. By   acting on their statements before authentication will always end in disappointment and misery as Allah stated in the Surah Hujuraat


Surah Al-Hujraat, Verse 6:

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا إِن جَاءَكُمْ فَاسِقٌ بِنَبَإٍ فَتَبَيَّنُوا أَن تُصِيبُوا قَوْمًا بِجَهَالَةٍ فَتُصْبِحُوا عَلَىٰ مَا فَعَلْتُمْ نَادِمِينَ


O you who believe! If a rebellious evil person comes to you with a news, verify it, lest you harm people in ignorance, and afterwards you become regretful to what you have done.


THE EVIL CONSEQUENCE OF BACKBITING


Let me borrow from Khadeejatimes


They cause hostilities between people of the same household and between neighbours and relatives. They can decrease in good deeds and increase in evil ones and lead to dishonor and ignominy.


"Backbiting and slandering are shame and disgrace. Their perpetrator is detested and he shall not have a noble death. Allah forbids these acts, as He says in the Holy Quran: "Backbiting and gossiping are from the most vilest and despicable of things, yet the most widely spread amongst mankind, such that no one is free from it except for a few people."


BACKBITING AND POLITICS


I will not say much here. People who represent us are in place of trust and  they must fulfil the trust. It is most unfortunate that politicians in many Muslim  countries don't see oath of office as contract between them and God and that they shall be taken to task for violation of oath of office.

Its an irony that majority Muslim leaders live in luxury and unimaginable opulence while those who vote for they or those they serve live is poverty and lack of basic standard of living.


Their children and families have best of every thing while we whose resouces they manage are made to do with meagre everything are yet we so stupidly,  elect them year after year.


In the same vein, many government employees don't see their jobs as public trust, rather they see it as an opportunity to better their own lives at the expense of the population.

To the extent they destroy the very fabric of society, they diminish our standard of living entrench poverty while they enhance the standard of living of their own families and relatives.

How can president build story buildings, create big businesses for his or her relatives within a short time.


How can a custom officer, build mansions, buy cars, sponsor expensive parties and naming ceremonies within few years of becoming an officers, when other civil servants of higher grade cannot afford those assets. Some fortune must be flowing under their bridge that does not flow under other's bridges.


Those who defraud our national resouces for the person material wellbeing are like cancers and must be removed. We should never refer to ( baa futuding) but callous criminals and certified thieves.


CONCLUSION

Can't provide a better conclusion that what is written in Khadeeja times.


"Backbiting is so widespread among people that it has become an issue of people’s meetings and an avenue for expressing their anger, misgivings and jealousy. Those who indulge in backbiting are hiding their own imperfections and harming others. They are oblivious of the fact that they are only harming themselves"


Never trust a backbiter, never act on how or her words, they befriends him and recommend him..they same way he backbites others to you, the same way he backbite yourself.  Its a very evil act and create discord within the community.


May Allah protect me and you from this heinous and obnoxious act.


L Darboe

Leicester

UK

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