Defamation

Al-Adab al-Mufrad Al-Bukhari

by Imam Bukhari
Translated by: Ustadha Aisha Bewley

XXIII. Defamation

198. Defamation

419. Ibn 'Abbas said, "Two men defamed one another in the time of the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace. One of them reviled the other who remained silent. The Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, remained seated. Then the other man answered him back and the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, got up. He was asked, "You got up?" He said, "The angels left, so I left with them. While this man was silent, the angels were answering the one who cursed him. When he answered, the angels left."

420. Umm ad-Darda' reported that a man came up to her and said, "A man has said bad things about you in the presence of 'Abdu'l-Malik.' She said, "We are suspected of something which we did not do. How often we have been praised for what we did not do!"

421. 'Abdullah said, "When a man says to his companion, 'You are my enemy,' then one of them has left Islam or he is innocent of what his companion said.'"

Abu Juhayfa reported that 'Abdullah added, "Except the one who repents."

199. Giving water

422. Ibn 'Abbas said, "There are 360 joints and each of them owes sadaqa every single day. Every good word is sadaqa. A man's helping his brother is sadaqa. A drink of water which he gives is sadaqa. Removing something harmful from the road is sadaqa."

200. When two people revile one another, the responsibility for what they say rests on the first to speak

423. Abu Hurayra reported that the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, "When two people revile each other, the responsibility for what they say rests on the first to speak as long as the one who wronged does not become excessive."

424. As 423, but from Anas.

425. The Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, "Do you know what calumny is?" They said, "No, Prophet and His Messenger know best." He said, "Telling people what other people have said in order to create dissension between them."

426. The Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, "Allah Almighty revealed to me that you should be humble and that you should not wrong one another."

201. Those who revile one another are two shaytans who accuse one another and deny one another

427. 'Iyad ibn Himar said, "I said, 'Messenger of Allah, there is someone who reviles me.' The Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, 'Those who revile one another are two shaytans who accuse one another and deny one another.'"

428. 'Iyad ibn Himar reported that the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, "Allah has revealed to me that you should be humble so that none of you will oppress anyone else and none of you will disdain another.' I said, 'Messenger of Allah, what do you think I should do when a man reviles me in a low assembly and then I answer him back? Do I incur any wrong action in doing that?' He replied, 'Two men who revile one another are two shaytans who accuse one another and deny one another.'"

428. (sic) 'Iyad said, "I was at war with the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, and I gave him a she-camel before I became Muslim. He said, "I dislike the froth of the idolaters."

202. Reviling a Muslim is deviant behaviour

429. Sa'id ibn Malik reported that the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, "Reviling a Muslim is deviant behaviour."

430. Anas said, "The Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, was neither coarse nor a curser nor a reviler, He used to say when he wanted to censure someone, 'What is wrong with him? May his brow be dusty!'"

431. 'Abdullah reported that the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, "Reviling a Muslim is deviant behaviour and killing him is disbelief."

432. Abu Dharr is reported as saying that he heard the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, say, "If a man accuses another man of deviance or accuses him of disbelief, that accusation will come back on him if his companion is not as he said."

433. Abu Dharr states that he heard the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, say, "A person who knowingly claims a father other than his own has disbelieved. A person who claims to be from a people when he is not one of them will take his place in the Fire. A person who calls a man an unbeliever or says, 'Enemy of Allah,' when that is not the case will have that come back on him."

434. Sulayman ibn Surad, one of the Companions of the Prophet, said, "Two men reviled one another in the presence of the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, and one of them became angry. He became so angry that his face puffed out and changed colour. The Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, 'I know some words which will make what he feels depart if he says them.' The man came to him and told him what the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, had said, He said, 'Seek refuge with Allah from the Accursed Shaytan.' He said, 'Do you think that there is something wrong with me? Am I mad? Leave!'"

435. 'Abdullah said, "There is a veil from Allah Almighty between every two Muslims. When one of them says ugly words to his companion, he has rent the veil of Allah. When one of them tells the other, 'You are an unbeliever,' then one of them has disbelieved."

203. Someone who does not say things directly to people

436. 'A'isha said, "The Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, did something and thereby created a dispensation for doing it. Some people still refrained from doing. The Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, heard about that and he gave a speech and praised Allah. Then he said, 'What is wrong with people who restrain themselves from doing something which I do? By Allah, I know Allah better than they do and I fear Him more than they do!'"

437. Anas said, "The Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, rarely told a man something to his face which he disliked. One day a man came to him with a trace of yellowish scent on him. When he stood up, he said to his Companions, 'If only he would change ­ or remove ­ this yellow!'"

204. When someone calls someone else a hypocrite without meaning it literally

438. 'Ali said. "The Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, sent for me and az-Zubayr ibn al-'Awwam while we were both on horseback and said, 'Go to such-and-such a meadow. There is a woman there who has a letter with her from Hatib to the idolaters. Bring her to me.' We found her rising along on one of her camels as the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, had described her. We said, '[Give us] the letter you have with you.' 'I do not have any letter,' she replied. We searched and her camel. My companion said, 'I do not see it.' I said, 'The Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, does not lie. By the One in whose hand my soul is, I will strip her unless she produces it!' She put her hand in the knot of her shawl ­ as she was wearing a black shawl ­ and brought it out. We went back to the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace. 'Umar exclaimed, 'He (i.e. Hatim) has betrayed Allah, His Messenger, and the believers! Let me strike off his head!' He asked, 'What made you do it?' Hatim said, 'I believe in Allah, but I want to have some authority with the people.' He said, ;He has spoken the truth, 'Umar. Was he not present at Badr? Perhaps Allah has looked on them and said, "Do whatever you like. The Garden is guaranteed for you."' 'Umar wept and said, 'Allah and His Messenger know best.''"

205. Someone says calls his brother an unbeliever

439. 'Abdullah ibn 'Umar reported that the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, "If a man says to his brother, 'You are an unbeliever,' it is true for one or the other of them."

440. 'Abdullah ibn 'Umar reported that the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, "When someone says to another, 'Unbeliever!' then one of them is an unbeliever. If the one to whom he says it is an unbeliever, he has spoke the truth. If that is not the case, then the one who said it has brought down disbelief on himself."

206. The gloating of enemies

441. Abu Hurayra reported that the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, used to seek refuge from an evil end and the glaoting of enemies.