Think Before You Speak

I have never regretted my silence; as for my speech I’ve regretted it many times – Umar Al-Khattab

Nothing is more painful than when someone says something about you that is blatantly untrue. In fact, relationships are ruined because of  unjust and inaccurate criticisms and accusations, defamations, hostilities, and slanderous words. 

All of us can probably remember a time when we were hurt by someone’s words. And we probably know of at least one good friendship that was destroyed, or of a family’s members who don’t talk to each other anymore because of hurtful words.

That’s why more often than not, it is better to be silent.

Ali ibn Abi Talib said, “He who speaks more commits more errors. He who commits more errors becomes shameless. He who is shameless will have less fear of Allah. He whose fear of Allah is less, his heart dies. He whose heart dies enters the fire. He who knows that his speech is also a part of his action speaks less except where he has some purpose.” 

Keeping silent nourishes taqwa, brings about the mercy of Allah, and is the gateway to beneficial knowledge. Muslims should also know that Allah is most easily reached through silence. 

It is not good for you to get into the fray when the bone of contention is not clear. When tempers settle down, that is the time to comment on the situation.

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Speaking when tensions are high and issues are unclear can simply confuse matters further. You might say things you do not mean and that you cannot easily retract. You are more likely to have your worlds misunderstood even if they are true. You are more likely to alienate and drive away the very people whom you are trying to convince.

Simply put, just shut your mouth and open your mind. Wherever you go, whatever you do, try to say less. Just observe what you’re doing and what others are doing. Don’t judge, just watch quietly and absorb everything around you. Eventually, you will find yourself quietly organizing and sifting through all those befuddled thoughts in your head. You will discard the rubbish, and you will save the jewels. You will begin to see Allah’s beauty in every single thing, be it your fingers on the keyboard or the waves in the sea.

So let’s stop for a while, and think about which type of person you are. May Allah bless us with the wisdom that is acquired through silence, and give us the mental fortitude to think before we speak.

Abdul Hakim Abd Jalil

Author Abdul Hakim Abd Jalil

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