Dear brothers, among Allah SWT blessing upon man is that he has made man into a thoughtful and sane being and has created a tongue for him to communicate with others.
He has made him able to utter the sounds and clarify what he wants through the words which he speaks. He has only to speak to let people know what he wants.
And therefore, as with any other blessing from Allah SWT, we should be grateful for the blessing which he has bestowed upon us. We should use our speech in useful ways, not to speak unless it is for good.
Allah SWT has spoken of the importance of this in the glorious Quran. In Sura Ibrahim ayat 24 onwards it says:
Have you not considered how Allah presents an example, making a good word like a good tree, whose roots is firmly fixed and its branches high in the sky? It produces its fruit all the time by permission of its Lord.
And Allah presents examples for the people that perhaps they will be reminded. And the example of a bad word is like a bad tree, uprooted from the surface of the earth and not having any stability.
Dear brothers, the example given by Allah SWT demonstrates the potential we have to do so much good with our speech but equally so, to be on the guard from using for something which can cause hurt and pain to others.
The tongue can and has been the cause of breakdowns in relationships within the home and amongst friends. We can all see examples of this if we look into our communities and groups.
Often this is an underestimated source of power over others and we do not appreciate the impact the tongue can have. However, our Prophet SAWS warned us of this too and in the following hadith, explains it for our benefit:
When the son of Adam gets up in the morning, all parts of his body deny the tongue saying “Fear Allah regarding us, we follow you. If you are right we shall also be right, and if you go astray then we shall also go astray.”
Dear brothers, the tongue controls the rest of your body. A well-controlled tongue will keep us within Islam but a loose tongue will destroy us.
What follows are 3 tips that we can all try to implement to help guard our tongues:
- The phrase “think before you speak” and “if you have nothing nice to say, don’t say anything at all” sounds clichéd but hold a lot of weight in the life of Muslims. Ask yourself if it is necessary or beneficial and insh’Allah you will notice the difference.
- If you are going to be around people then aim to surround yourself around good company. It takes two to gossip or backbite. Most people who engage in these sins will not do it all the time and with all people. In fact, they often have a select group of people who share this habit. If you find that certain people make it easier for you to engage in this then try to steer clear of that group.
- Most importantly, mention the name of Allah in your conversations. Without this there is little protection from falling into the traps of Shaytaan and losing control of our tongues. Remind ourselves that every word we are uttering is going to be held to account. Start small, like Bismillah for the beginning of every task and Alhamdullilah for the end of every task.
Dear brothers, this is not something that should be taken lightly. In the society that we find ourselves in we are seeing more and more that the tongue is causing decay in our homes and in our communities.
Let’s address the problem and begin habits that can become the cornerstone of a healthier home and community for our generation and generations to come.
May Allah SWT enable us to guard our tongues. May Allah SWT enable us to use it to deliver good for His pleasure. And may Allah SWT reward us for the effort we make with our tongue.
Ameen wal hamdullilahi rabilalameen.