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In the Name of God بسم الله

Let’s talk about gossip, backbiting and slandering

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  • Advanced Member (With Brothers Forum Membership)

Let’s be honest guys, have you ever did any of the 3 things mentioned in the title?

Few days ago I was reading about backbiting in al-Islam.org. I noticed how Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى) and Prophet Muhammad ((صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم)) hates it so much. I admit that I love backbiting. But I never in my whole life backbite  about a Muslim human being. The only people I love backbiting are my father and one of my cousin. I’m trying my best to stop but they are making me so angry and sometimes I can’t handle them. My heart start burning when I look at my father’s face. 

Anyway, I asked someone in Islam .org what to do to repent since I fear Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى), they told me if I backbite or slandering about a MOMIN human being, I should tell them to forgive me. I was asking my self how since it’s possible because they are oppressors, but when I re-read it again and I saw the word momin, I became happy. So if I'm not wrong, can we backbite about Kufar? Don’t worry guys, that is not my intention.

What about you guys? Do you know anyone who backbite? Have you ever did it? 

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4 hours ago, Ali~J said:

We only backbite the people who backbite us. 

THIS IS WHAT I DO.

4 hours ago, ireallywannaknow said:

What is the exact definition of backbiting? 

Is it only revealing someone's private sins? Or is it saying I don't like so and so? Or is it saying so and so does x thing that annoys me? I don't understand. 

Backbiting means you are talking about a mumim. If it’s a real thing, that means it’s a backbite. If it’s false, that mean it’s slandering 

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22 minutes ago, Diaz said:

I became happy. So if I'm not wrong, can we backbite about Kufar?

I wouldn't count on it if I was you. Who decide which person is a kufar? If you ask wahabi/salafis all Shia is kufar.
Even if a person is a kufar, then why treat them badly? I think the Prophet(صلى الله عليه وسلم وعائلته) did not do that unless they attacked Muslims.

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19 minutes ago, Revert1963 said:

I wouldn't count on it if I was you. Who decide which person is a kufar? If you ask wahabi/salafis all Shia is kufar.
Even if a person is a kufar, then why treat them badly? I think the Prophet(صلى الله عليه وسلم وعائلته) did not do that unless they attacked Muslims.

Sorry, I didn’t meant it in that way. It’s a major sin to backbite about our Muslim siblings right? But what about the non Muslim? Is it a sin?

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24 minutes ago, Diaz said:

Sorry, I didn’t meant it in that way. It’s a major sin to backbite about our Muslim siblings right? But what about the non Muslim? Is it a sin?

Thing with backbiting is that it is an acquired trait, a digusting habit that doesn't discriminate whether the person is a Muslim or not. Start by kuffar and it will be a matter of time you end up talking about Muslims. Backbiting ends up being a part of your character and personality, and an habit you get used to do with the people you backbite with. You won't be able to enjoy your time with these people anymore because the only thing in common you will share with them is this disgusting habit. It is destructive and hateful.

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4 minutes ago, Bakir said:

Thing with backbiting is that it is an acquired trait, a digusting habit that doesn't discriminate whether the person is a Muslim or not. Start by kuffar and it will be a matter of time you end up talking about Muslims. Backbiting ends up being a part of your character and personality, and an habit you get used to do with the people you backbite with. You won't be able to enjoy your time with these people anymore because the only thing in common you will share with them is this disgusting habit. It is destructive and hateful.

I feel like what you are saying is true, I still remember the days that I love wasting with my cousin. But when he start slandering and backbiting, things became boring and I no longer what to waste my time with him. 

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3 hours ago, ireallywannaknow said:

What is the exact definition of backbiting? 

Is it only revealing someone's private sins? Or is it saying I don't like so and so? Or is it saying so and so does x thing that annoys me? I don't understand. 

From my understanding it is something said to another about a third party and you know that particular person would dislike or find offensive but still say it, that would be backbiting. 

Even if it is something relatively harmless. I recall a talk about it many years ago. And an example given would be, say you are describing someone to another like "oh you know that fat brother" - now in of itself it probably is not inherently bad as it is just descriptive in this context with no ill will.

However you know deep down, had that person heard himself being referred to as fat, it would hurt their feelings or they would not want to be referred to as such, then that would be backbiting.

Edited by Propaganda_of_the_Deed
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1 hour ago, Diaz said:

Sorry, I didn’t meant it in that way. It’s a major sin to backbite about our Muslim siblings right? But what about the non Muslim? Is it a sin?

The thing with backbiting non Muslims is, which it is not technically haram, you need to consider what you are doing. If you backbite someone, even a non Muslim, you should expect that this will eventually get back to the person and then, most of the time, they will consider this an attack and will either backbite you or do something to you in front of your face. The difference between backbiting a Muslim vs a non Muslim (except if that Muslim is actively engaged in Thulm (oppression)) is that backbiting a Muslim carries consequences both in this life and the next life, whereas backbiting a non Muslim may only carry consequences in this life, but those consequences could be severe, depending on the circumstances. So it is better to avoid backbiting all together. 

If you want your akhira, don't do anything that even comes close to oppression or injustice to another brother or sister. If you want your dunya also, don't do anything that even comes close to oppression or injustice, even to a non Muslim., unless they are an oppressor. 

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3 hours ago, Hassan- said:

There are two types of backbiting. First, is belittling someone behind there back, as in cursing, slandering, name calling or lowering there status. Second, is exposing someone’s private sins to other people. Exposing someone’s public sins is not backbiting. The people that are not haram to backbite depends on your marja. Some like Sayed Sistani say backbiting is only haram to Shias, and others like Imam Khamenei say backbiting is haram for Muslims of any sect. 

From where did you get this info? I read in al-Islam.org that if you talk about people back whether it’s possible or negative, it is backbiting. If you are talking lies about someone, that means it’s slandering. 

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3 hours ago, Diaz said:

From where did you get this info? I read in al-Islam.org that if you talk about people back whether it’s possible or negative, it is backbiting. If you are talking lies about someone, that means it’s slandering. 

Backbiting is any sort of talk that, if someone talked that way about you behind your back, you would be upset. If the talk is about something that is true, that is Gheeba (backbiting). If it is about something that isn't true, that is slander, which is much worse. 

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3 hours ago, Abu Hadi said:

The thing with backbiting non Muslims is, which it is not technically haram, you need to consider what you are doing. If you backbite someone, even a non Muslim, you should expect that this will eventually get back to the person and then, most of the time, they will consider this an attack and will either backbite you or do something to you in front of your face. The difference between backbiting a Muslim vs a non Muslim (except if that Muslim is actively engaged in Thulm (oppression)) is that backbiting a Muslim carries consequences both in this life and the next life, whereas backbiting a non Muslim may only carry consequences in this life, but those consequences could be severe, depending on the circumstances. So it is better to avoid backbiting all together. 

If you want your akhira, don't do anything that even comes close to oppression or injustice to another brother or sister. If you want your dunya also, don't do anything that even comes close to oppression or injustice, even to a non Muslim., unless they are an oppressor. 

Thank you brother, that’s what I’m doing. Trying my best not to backbite, after all I don’t want to be like my father and my cousin. 

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1 hour ago, Abu Hadi said:

The thing with backbiting non Muslims is, which it is not technically haram, you need to consider what you are doing. If you backbite someone, even a non Muslim, you should expect that this will eventually get back to the person and then, most of the time, they will consider this an attack and will either backbite you or do something to you in front of your face. The difference between backbiting a Muslim vs a non Muslim (except if that Muslim is actively engaged in Thulm (oppression)) is that backbiting a Muslim carries consequences both in this life and the next life, whereas backbiting a non Muslim may only carry consequences in this life, but those consequences could be severe, depending on the circumstances. So it is better to avoid backbiting all together. 

If you want your akhira, don't do anything that even comes close to oppression or injustice to another brother or sister. If you want your dunya also, don't do anything that even comes close to oppression or injustice, even to a non Muslim., unless they are an oppressor. 

That's the thing. I think it's important to build a strong Islamic character, and that definitely excludes backbiting of any shape. Backbiting non-Muslims may be halal, but the type of character and image you are building of yourself is terrible, and as I said, it is an habit that will most likely lead you to sin (backbite against your Muslim brothers).

Edited by Bakir
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1 hour ago, hasanhh said:

A few times I have been the subject of planned character assassinations. These are a real hassle.

My personal favorites are when you are accused of doing two mutually exclusive things. That's a laugh.

I have to say that I only WISH I had done some of the things I've been reported as doing. When we're no longer around to set the record straight, guess  Zayn will be getting an earful about his grandparents' supposed adventures.

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On 6/13/2019 at 1:52 PM, Ali~J said:

We only backbite the people who backbite us. 

salam alaykum wrwb,

I stumbled upon this...

SLANDERING IN THE NAME OF RELIGION

www.iqraonline.net/slandering in the name of religion.

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42 minutes ago, Mzwakhe said:

I stumbled upon this...

I also found this:

Reasonable Grounds of Backbiting

Backbiting is decided as forbidden so long as it is intended to disgrace others, but if it is not intended for so or if a reasonable ground relies upon it, it is not forbidden. Muslim jurisprudents have mentioned a number of reasonable grounds for backbiting:

• If backbiting represents the complaint of a wronged person so as to prove his right before a judge, it is not forbidden, even if it includes the ascription of injustice and criminality to the other party.

• The person whose advice is sought in definite matters, such as marriage or trust, is permitted to backbite the other party by mentioning his defects-. It is also acceptable to warn a believer against the association with deviants, by referring namely to their defects, provided that such reference is intended to protect the believer. It is also acceptable to defame a testifier when it is necessary.

• Backbiting is acceptable when it is intended to disavow the claim of a false lineage.

• Backbiting is acceptable when it is intended to refute an untrue saying or an illegal claim.

• Backbiting is acceptable when it takes the form of testimony against wrongdoers.

• It is acceptable to mention certain epithets (such as ‘the blind’, ‘the one-eyed’, and the like) of certain people if this is necessary for introducing them.

• Backbiting is acceptable when it is intended to forbid evil, by mentioning the defects of a person before somebody who is able to guide him.

• It is acceptable to backbite those who declare publicly their commitment of sins, such as the drunk and gamblers, provided that such backbiting should not exceed the limits. It is said that to backbite a sinful is not offensive.

Finally, well intention and sound objective must be proposed. Likewise, it is improper to aim at evil intentions, such as enmity, envy, and the like.

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5 minutes ago, Ali~J said:

proposed. Likewise, it is improper to aim at evil intentions, such as enmity, envy, and the like.

Well said

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  • 1 year later...
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Salam

I have a question, is this gossip?

Earlier a person close to me was venting about their problems with the way people treated them. To put it simply, some members of their spouse's family have been rude to them and now shun them. They said things to me like "I saw this person in public, they said salam to everybody near me then just walked past me." Or how they've been mistreated by this person for years. Why did this topic come up? Because this person' mother died, and none of the extended family in America save one person came to her or said "we're sorry for your loss." In our culture this is a very big deal, especially since they're family. So this person complained to me that none of these people said anything, and from there vented to me about the wrong things they've done to us and other members of our family.

Is this gossip? Should I have listened? Or should I have stopped this person from talking by changing the subject/dropping it even though their mother just died and was in a sensitive place?

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2 hours ago, guest 2025 said:

Salam

I have a question, is this gossip?

Earlier a person close to me was venting about their problems with the way people treated them. To put it simply, some members of their spouse's family have been rude to them and now shun them. They said things to me like "I saw this person in public, they said salam to everybody near me then just walked past me." Or how they've been mistreated by this person for years. Why did this topic come up? Because this person' mother died, and none of the extended family in America save one person came to her or said "we're sorry for your loss." In our culture this is a very big deal, especially since they're family. So this person complained to me that none of these people said anything, and from there vented to me about the wrong things they've done to us and other members of our family.

Is this gossip? Should I have listened? Or should I have stopped this person from talking by changing the subject/dropping it even though their mother just died and was in a sensitive place?

Salam, 

Listening to someone vent, isn't haram. Even if they are gossiping, or backbiting... BUT you should attempt to find the good, or give the person being gossiped about the benefit of the doubt. Of course if you also chime in, and begin gossiping/backbiting it is haram even if true (gheebat). 

Venting is a VERY slippery slope, as usually the person venting is extremely emotional and letting EVERYTHING OUT to seek advice, or help. If NO names are disclosed, then I see nothing wrong with it such as " my colleague", or " someone I know is mistreating me, they always do so and so .... ( you get the point). If you hid the other persons identity and vent, then I really don't see anything wrong with it ( but even if you do hide the identity you should try your BEST not to call them names, or talk about their negative qualities for example " my colleague is a BEEEP).

In some cases gossiping/backbiting may be permissible such as if you ask a brother whether a girl you are interested in to marry is the right one... this person can talk about her negative/positive qualities. Also backbiting those who commit sins publicly , and oppressors. It's also permissible to backbite when advising a believer, or consulting ( if you believe not disclosing another's negative qualities may effect the person seeking advice negatively THEN you must speak on it).

Hope that helps. 

WS

Edited by YoungSkiekh313
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30 minutes ago, YoungSkiekh313 said:

Salam, 

Listening to someone vent, isn't haram. Even if they are gossiping, or backbiting... BUT you should attempt to find the good, or give the person being gossiped about the benefit of the doubt. Of course if you also chime in, and begin gossiping/backbiting it is haram even if true (gheebat). 

Venting is a VERY slippery slope, as usually the person venting is extremely emotional and letting EVERYTHING OUT to seek advice, or help. If NO names are disclosed, then I see nothing wrong with it such as " my colleague", or " someone I know is mistreating me, they always do so and so .... ( you get the point). If you hid the other persons identity and vent, then I really don't see anything wrong with it ( but even if you do hide the identity you should try your BEST not to call them names, or talk about their negative qualities for example " my colleague is a BEEEP).

In some cases gossiping/backbiting may be permissible such as if you ask a brother whether a girl you are interested in to marry is the right one... this person can talk about her negative/positive qualities. Also backbiting those who commit sins publicly , and oppressors. It's also permissible to backbite when advising a believer, or consulting ( if you believe not disclosing another's negative qualities may effect the person seeking advice negatively THEN you must speak on it).

Hope that helps. 

WS

Thank you very much and may God bless you

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11 hours ago, YoungSkiekh313 said:

Salam, 

Listening to someone vent, isn't haram. Even if they are gossiping, or backbiting... BUT you should attempt to find the good, or give the person being gossiped about the benefit of the doubt. Of course if you also chime in, and begin gossiping/backbiting it is haram even if true (gheebat). 

Venting is a VERY slippery slope, as usually the person venting is extremely emotional and letting EVERYTHING OUT to seek advice, or help. If NO names are disclosed, then I see nothing wrong with it such as " my colleague", or " someone I know is mistreating me, they always do so and so .... ( you get the point). If you hid the other persons identity and vent, then I really don't see anything wrong with it ( but even if you do hide the identity you should try your BEST not to call them names, or talk about their negative qualities for example " my colleague is a BEEEP).

In some cases gossiping/backbiting may be permissible such as if you ask a brother whether a girl you are interested in to marry is the right one... this person can talk about her negative/positive qualities. Also backbiting those who commit sins publicly , and oppressors. It's also permissible to backbite when advising a believer, or consulting ( if you believe not disclosing another's negative qualities may effect the person seeking advice negatively THEN you must speak on it).

Hope that helps. 

WS

I don't know if listening to gheeba is technically haram, but it definitely is a failing in the duty of Amr Bil Maroof wa Nahiya Al Munkhar. Silence = Consent, in many situations. 

 

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15 hours ago, Abu Hadi said:

I don't know if listening to gheeba is technically haram, but it definitely is a failing in the duty of Amr Bil Maroof wa Nahiya Al Munkhar. Silence = Consent, in many situations. 

 

As per Ayotullah Sistani :

 

Question: An elderly person has a habit of doing gheebat and it is very difficult for me to stop him and I also do not want to hear but I am forced to. What should I do?

Answer: To listen to someone who is backbiting is not Haram in it self, however the listener must act in accordance to enjoining the good (Amr bil Marouf) and forbidding the evil (Nahy anil Munkar)., and if it is not effective one must show their dissatisfaction from the person performing the backbiting.
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