Friday, September 24, 2010



One reason for lying is to annoy the person addressed or to show him that he is not respected or valued. For example, when asked: "Where have you been?" a person who is late for an appointment may tell a very obvious lie to the person who has been kept waiting. Here, the basic aim is to let the other person know that his having waited is not important, that his wishes have no meaning, and to make him angry by suggesting that he is credulous.

Lying in order to mock others is also a widespread form of immorality. For instance, a person who wants to mock one of his friends might convince him that a fictitious event really took place. Believing his lying friend's words, he passes on the "news" to others and, when the truth comes out, is regarded as credulous or stupid. This entertains people who enjoy lying and mocking others. By mocking their friends' credulity and belief in them, such liars consider themselves to be very cunning and intelligent. In reality, however, Allah does not approve of this and the mocker eventually is exposed as a manipulative person who is disliked. He has, therefore, fallen into his own trap, for while trying to demean others he has only demeaned himself.

In the following verse, Allah announces that He forbids lying and mocking others:

O you who believe! People should not ridicule others who may be better than themselves, nor should any women ridicule other women who may be better than themselves... (Surat al-Hujurat, 49:11)

While some people thoughtlessly mock others and lie to entertain themselves for a few minutes, they are really engaging in unacceptable and immoral behavior. When informed of this fact, people who do not adhere to the Qur'an's morality may reply: "So what? We're just enjoying ourselves," thereby refusing to see mocking others and lying as bad characteristics.

That these two characteristics are so widespread and are almost habitual to many people does not alter the fact that they violate Islamic morality and that, consequently, such behavior is never permissible. In addition, if such people would just once listen to their consciences and answer honestly if they really want to live surrounded by people just like themselves, they would see the truth. Nobody wants his own bad behavior to be visited upon himself. And, if he is asked whether or not he wants it, he emphatically rejects it.

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