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The Right Words
Channel: Nouman Ali Khan
File Size: 16.94MB
Ustadh Nouman Ali Khan talks about and emphasizes on the meaning of the word – Qawlan Sadeedah [The Right Words].
The power of words is the quintessential power bestowed upon man and is a gift from Allah. When we speak, we communicate with Allah and hence, we should be vigilant on how we use them in our daily lives.
The word Saddah means filling a hole or a gap. Regarding speech, Sadd “سد” in Arabic means to fill in something. Our conversations should be such that it doesn’t create any further problems, if some already exist, rather fill that void. one should be thoughtful of his tone/voice/statements.
‘Sud’ also means a dam that separates and mountain (a reference to Surah Yasin and Kahf) it encourages us to speak with knowledge or don’t speak anything. We should only speak if we have something positive to contribute to a conversation. We should also take care to speak straight/clearly so listeners can tell where it began and where it ended, unlike tangled cables or ropes where no one can tell where starts and where it ends. Say what you want others to hear, thus, leaving no room for ambiguity. Lastly, we should speak with “purpose”.
Episode Transcript ©
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Michelle, Cindy Emily rock data melissani of koko de la Mata Bitna endl multiball La ilaha illallah wa la la mina Latina Amano Amina Sally hot water, so bill hockey, whatever. So b sub m in Yerevan, I mean, in the previous football, I spoke to you about some of the opposites of speaking straightforward. And some of the ways in which we don't realize that we're not engaged in what Allah calls I'll call a studied for yaku. You know, Allah says, Allah, Allah kulu Colin sadita have be conscious of Allah and speak in a straightforward manner. This week I want to emphasize what is this word? This phrase mean that Allah azza wa jal uses Odin sadita. A word that is straightforward. And
I want to start with something very basic and work my way up. The basics I want to start with is the power of words themselves a lot as origin made the human being unique. All creation has a language. Allah even says when you mention it later Sunday, he'll be hungry, he will, I can't let of own at home. There is not a single creation, except it's also declaring allows perfection in some way in its own language. However, you cannot understand how it's declaring unless perfection or rock a tree, every atom, every subatomic particle is engaged in the praise of Allah, and declaring a less perfection in its own way in its own language. And actually,
birds, trees, inanimate objects, all of them have a language and which is why all of this creation will become witness on the Day of Judgment, even things that we don't think have a language, like our body parts, you know, they're going to be speaking out and testifying, and they're going to say on takana, and Lady and Takako lashay, the one who gave all things the ability to speak has today given us the ability to speak. So that's the first place I want to start with All Things have language. But human beings were given a special ability to produce language, we're more capable, we're more sophisticated in how we use words and how we can communicate ideas and advanced ideas,
and the power of words, actually, I would argue, there's nothing more powerful that human beings are capable of than words. As a matter of fact, there's nothing more powerful and the most power the most evident indication of that is that a lot as he himself decided to guide humanity through words, at the end of the day, the Quran essentially is Columbia Law as he describes it himself and sort of totoaba it is the speech of Allah it is words. And so human beings does this great gift that allowed us when he said animal Quran in Santa Monica, Allahu LA and before that, I learn Quran, Allah, Allah insha, Allah Allahu Allah, and he taught the human being the ability to speak. So our words are
actually a very powerful gift that Allah gave us. And using when we open our mouth and say something, we have to appreciate that this gift was not given to other creations the way it was given to us. And this is the gift because of which we are able to communicate with Allah. And Allah communicates with us through this gift, that revelation would mean nothing if we didn't have the power of language. So when you have been given and I have been given a very expensive, I would even argue a priceless gift, then the way we use it has to be exquisite, we have to be extra careful about how we use this gift, because we value it. On a side note, I just want to say something that's
not related to this codebook and that is that all languages English, Arabic, French, German, Punjabi, Bengali, youth, you name it, whatever, whatever language, Bahasa whatever language you speak, all of them are children of the language taught to Adam alayhis, salam, all of them. And all languages either and Islam did not know language on his own, it was revealed to him that was revealed to him, you know what that means? That all languages are a revealed gift of Allah, all of them. So making fun of somebody language, and making fun of how somebody speaks, or making some fun of, you know, fun of cultures because they have different language than us is actually making fun of
something Allah Himself revealed. It's sacred, in some people have in their head that Arabic is sacred, but you know Punjabi, but you know what all languages Allah says Allah who Albion Allah what the same one who tell you said he taught the Quran is the same one who said he taught speech, same verb is used Alize, the teacher of the Quran, Allah is the teacher of all speech, all speech. So get this concept out of your head. There's such a thing as the language of the kuffar or the language of the non Muslims or the language of God, no, no all languages from Allah, and we have to have respect for all languages. That's that's a side note that I wanted to bring up. But regardless, now, we come
to the idea of a code as a deed and I wanted to go through this this loaded term, the word sadaqa. In Arabic, for as far as the material term is concerned, the first implication of it is a law called halal. It means to fill in a gap or a crack when something like you know old walls in back in the day you know, we have sheetrock so in America at least it doesn't show as much but when you have stone walls or concrete walls over time, some there's some holes and you have to fill them and patch them up. That patch is actually a said in Arabic or sadad in Arabic to fill up again.
Now what does that mean for speech? What the first implication of that is, sometimes when somebody speaks to you, they cause damage, just like the damage on the wall. If somebody says something hurtful to you, somebody says something ignorant. Somebody, sometimes people say something ignorant about you, or they say something ignorant about what they don't know. Or they speak as though they know, but they don't really know. And some of the most interesting is when people speak on behalf of a lesbian, and say, You know what, that's haram? Where did you Where did you learn that? How long
are you know what this one makes things up about Islam makes What up, you have the knowledge to say that before you make a claim about someone, you have the knowledge to say something is halal or haram before we open your mouth, open our mouth. Now, when you hear in ignorance like that, our first impulse is to put people in their place, and to just shut them down. But you know, if you respond to ignorance with anger, or you respond to ignorance by, you know, a reaction and you know, an upset reaction, or you know, what we call put someone in their place? Right, that's ignorant, you have no knowledge, what are you talking about? This is, you know, You're ridiculous, etc. When you
have these kinds of responses? Well, when you offend someone, because you're offended when you offend someone back, do you think they're going to just hear that and say, Oh, I didn't realize I was being ignorant, thank you, for humbling me. Now, I'm just going to sit down and be quiet. That's not what's going to happen. They hear you respond in an aggressive fashion. And what happens, they say, you know what, I'm going to take the next step. And now I'm going to become even more aggressive. I'm going to take because, you know, pride kicks in pride kicks, and you just attacked me, you just criticize me. And the human nature is to not accept criticism is to actually defend
yourself. Whether it's physically defend yourself, but even verbally defend yourself, then right or wrong exits from the conversation. All you want to do now is put someone else in their place. So now they say something even more obscene, and more offensive. Now, as you hear that, you get more upset, and the crack gets bigger and bigger and bigger and bigger. But if we understand that we have to have the taqwa of Allah, the cautious awareness of Allah, when engaged in conversation with someone who causes a crack, who says something ignorant, who says something outrageous, we have to learn the process of saying, What am I going to say, that covers this gap. And there's not going to be a back
and forth that makes this crack worse. You have to you have to, and you know, the people you have an argument with, or not people you've never met, these are people you've known your whole life. These are friends, family, coworkers that you deal with all the time, you know how they speak. And for many of you, you've had the same exact argument 20 3040 times. Man, every time I go and talk to my mom, this happens. Every time I talk to my dad, we end up like this. I mean, I talked to her this happens every time I talked to my friend, this happens, he always says this. Well, if he always says this, and you always respond in the same way, and it always goes the same wrong way. But you don't
understand what studied means, then maybe you need to think ahead and say, I've already gone down this road before. And I know where it leads. Maybe I need to be smarter now. And say something or not say something, avoid saying some things, or say things in a way that will close the store. That won't, you know, that will not perpetuate further. And that's something you really have to become thoughtful about. Think about languages, you know, of all the muscles that we have in our body, the eyes and the tongue are actually very easily used. You don't have to actually exercise you don't get tired of using your eyes. You just open them and they work. Hands can get tired, legs can get tired,
your back can get tired, but the tongue can move very quickly. The eyes can move very quickly. So we get trigger happy and we just whatever comes in our mouth just leaves immediately. An ancient poet once said that he wished that his neck was one mile long. What a strange thing to say I wish my neck was one mile long. And he was asked Why do you say that? And he said, Well, because my gut tells me I should say something. And when those thoughts travelled from my gut through my neck, maybe I should have time to think No, no, put it back down. That shouldn't come out of my mouth. So I'm hoping it's a mile long, you know. So another good Hiram in another column, like being of being
embarrassed or regretting that you said something is worse, regretting that you didn't say something is better, you know, so uncovered or studied, first of all, should I say something? Should I not say something? And what I say? Is it going to escalate and make things worse, instead of making things better? And with your experience, you already know which kinds of words or phrases or tone or suggestion did not go well. So maybe it's time to experiment with a different direction, say something other than what you said before, say something that won't cause damage, maybe undo damage. I'll give you an example. Because one time, a long time ago, there was a an elder that I looked up
to a machine that I shall not name because he'll know he's watching. So I used to look up to him. Very, very nice fellow, everybody who met him in the machine was just just just get soft around him. He's just got this very loving personality and one
Time were in the machine and two of the elders in the machine had a fight with each other, arguing, yelling, screaming at the top of their lungs after a moment of prayer, and the elder that I respect and love is also witness to this conversation. And usually what he used to say is you'd come in, he would say Salaam, how are you, how's your family for every person he met, he would be discourteous. And I was one of the regular messalina type machines. And I noticed that when after that, he would still say Salaam to me the same way. But those two other fellows, he would come and just say Salaam to them. But that more conversation than that, he wouldn't have longer conversation with them. And
they felt it. And so one of them one time we were leaving the machine, and one of them said, you know, you used to ask me how I'm doing. We used to talk, you don't talk to me like that anymore. And he said, Well, I saw you lose your temper. And I felt that, you know, if I don't want to be a reason that one day you lose your temper towards me. And then that sin is on you, in the house of Allah. And if you lose your temper towards me, and I feel bad towards you, then the angels will record that too, as something against you. So I care for you, which is why I speak less to you now.
That's what he says to him. He doesn't tell him you know, you're so ignorant. The way you fought that guy, I don't want to talk to you. Why would I? Why would anybody want to talk to you, he actually made it something about his care for him. He doesn't want him to become a worst sinner. He doesn't want him to have a record against him. He doesn't want him to have himself to have a bad feeling towards the person who lost their temper. And that brother who lost his temper, who people were afraid to talk to him because he loses his temper, stood there crying his eyes out, crying his eyes out. And the next thing he did was he apologized to the one he fought with. That's what he did
all of that because of just how sad just knowing having the wisdom of what to say, and how to say how to engage. This is a very powerful, very difficult quality. Because once again, we are programmed, whatever comes in your head just comes out. Just immediately impulse reaction, right. And this is actually one of the meanings of the word Johanna
in Arabic is to tie up and gehele is to let loose. Whatever comes goes. Okay, this is why we're either hapa homolka Hill una casa de mon Soto Furqan when the ignorant address them ignorant doesn't just mean ignorance. It also means impulsive. You had the impulse to say something and you just set it stop, think, you know, think how am I going don't just throw grenades with your words. Don't just throw grenades. We have targeted direct, impactful speech, exact words. And if you can't think of saying something, it's better to stay quiet. That's the first implication illogical 100. The second is what
they say when there is a you know, when there is a crack already there. And you're trying to fill it up and fix it. What that means is when you meet someone who's broken, when you meet someone who's hurt, when you meet someone who's angry when you meet someone who's upset not because of you because of some other reason. You have to have the insight and the sensitivity to use the kinds of words that will make them feel better.
Not make them feel worse. Not make them feel worse. I'll give you examples of each as I go because I want you to think in practical terms. What this means, you know, you're at a funeral. Somebody passed away, there's a janazah and the son, the parent passed away the son is there. He's crying. And you come to Him and you put no No, no, don't cry, you have to have somewhere. You just say these words. Now in your head. You said something really good. What did you say you have to have? Something that's a good thing to say. No, it isn't jacoba salaam lost his child.
God doesn't know if he's alive or dead. He's, you know, he's gone. And we don't know what happened to us if I saw the jacobellis cry. Yes. Did he cry for an hour? Two hours a day? Two days? No, he cried for many, many years. He cried for many, many years. And his children would say Doctor Who does gurus have to lie? You're gonna keep messing us up, get over it already.
And this is the Prophet of Allah Alayhi Salaam iacobelli. Salam, Allah what what words came out of his mouth that are recorded in the Quran for sub bruun Jamil. This is the prophet of sub. This is the prophet of subway, you know what that means? That means him crying doesn't mean he does not have suffered. But when you went to somebody janazah and they were crying, and you put your hand over their shoulder, and you said, Hey, you should have suffered. They already feel terrible that they lost a parent. Now they feel terrible that they don't they don't have
you made me feel even worse. Another feeling guilty for crying. Crying is a human emotion Allah gave us that profits were missing somebody because they shed tears. How are you making someone feel that so sensitivity? Just understanding what I say? Is it going to make things better? Or is it going to make things worse? Is it going to hurt someone's feelings? There was a fellow I met at the masjid one time after Juma he came he came and said Salaam to me. Really Nice to meet you. I've heard I've watched a lot of your videos the first time I'm meeting you in the machine.
We have each other things around, this other fellow walks into the conversation. So are you concerned about this fellow over here? You just met? Yeah, he's a security guard at the airport.
And I felt so terrible. I knew what he's saying that. And even that fellow recognized, he said, you know, why did you have to say that? Am I supposed to be embarrassed that I'm a security guard? You know, just to be sensitive about what you're gonna say that you know, but it's true. You are right, you still have the job right? You're not wearing your uniform today. He's trying to make him feel low with these words. And then when somebody questions you say no, no, I just stated the fact I mean, it's a good thing. You have a job and hamdulillah you have a job. Good for you. That wasn't your intention that wasn't cold studied. Don't use sarcasm, hurtful words sliding comments that you
can get away with straightforward speech means speech that doesn't cause pain speech that doesn't mean it's not used to belittle it's not used as you know in modern language throw shade at someone you know, to me to make trolling comments towards someone even with with body language we need to avoid this then I studied a suit actually means that Jebel Hodges is very interesting now also means a dam nowadays a set is actually a dam that that prevents two sides from you know the water from coming to the other side. Massive mountains are also called sowed in the Arabic language it's using the Quran for when was a lemon baby him when he himself didn't woman healthy him and so to see him
right or darker name, you know, for the Albanian Albanian sadden the word that is used for a dam that cannot be penetrated a wall that cannot be penetrated. And what that means in terms of speeches, you have to say, you know, this is something described elsewhere in the Quran, Allah Taku la Celica, hear him, don't say something you don't have knowledge of, you know, like people throw statistics out, like they know what 90% of the people think this? Or, you know, 80% of the food we eat. Where'd you get this percentage? What did you get that from?
And somebody can rip your argument apart? Because you said something not based on knowledge. Or sometimes even within the Islamic discussion, somebody will come? Come to, you know, soccer man, all the Sahaba agreed this, and I said all the Sahaba Can you name 10 of them?
How about how about eight? How about that? You did and they agree? Where did they agree? Oh, it's obvious. obvious. We're in the books which books? I'll be back.
Don't say things that you don't know about. Don't speak about matters you don't know about when you have 20 something year olds coming and saying By the way, this hadith is that if
really, what's the where's the Dorf? who commented on its weakness? Do you know where this how you know, I googled it? I heard it in a lecture, then why don't you just listen to a lecture and keep that to yourself until you know because when you say things that are half baked, that are not fully well thought out, that are not concrete. Then they will get Ill create fitness in society speak words that are solidly known. If you know about something in an absolute way, then speak about it. If you don't, then silence is better, or saying I don't know is good. I don't know it's good people come to me after tomorrow all the time. I you know after Juma, typically I stay behind take people's
questions. Some person comes up here. What's your opinion on Islamic Finance? I said I don't have an opinion on Islamic finance. I say no, no, no socialization, I do this or not. Should I make this investment or not? Should I buy this or not? You know, using this bank or not? And I say I don't know. Why don't you know i? Because I don't know.
You can ask someone who knows? You don't know? What's the purpose? What's your you give all these speeches? You don't know? Yeah, I give all those speeches. And I still don't know. I'm okay with that. I don't want to tell you something. I don't know. I'm completely comfortable telling you. I don't know. I'm happy with it. That's how I studied. That's and it also means the way you and I use in Sharla the incorrect way we use inshallah, somebody says hey, are you coming? inshallah?
What does that mean?
If I feel like it, maybe if not, maybe. So if I show up, then not in trouble if I didn't know I didn't say yes. I said inshallah. I put it on God, not myself. You know, if Allah wills that's not how that works, you know? So it's called officiating. Now.
If you're gonna say yes to something, then it's a yes. If it's a notice something, then it's a no. And also, from a listening point of view. There are some times it's happened to me often, people say, oh, Solomon, we want you to visit our community. And sometimes I don't say yes, I say I can't. Will you at least think about it? Yes, I'll think about it. Then they write an email. Solomon promised he'll visit our community.
No. Well, you said yeah, I'm sorry. I didn't say yes. I said, Yes. I'll think about it.
That's a lack of hearing what you want to hear, hearing what you want to hear. Speak clearly.
Be direct, be clear in what your intentions are, and what you're about to say and what you want the other person to hear. So there's no room for ambiguity. There's no room left for ambiguity. And so this is the third implication and finally said to Sam,
when the you know, arrows were really important back in the day, because that's your primary weapon. And unlike a bullet, you have to fix the arrow. So you have to make sure that it's straight, because if the arrow is even a little bit crooked, you're not going to hit your target. So the idea of fixing the arrow and making it perfectly straight and lean and clean, crisp, that's actually called Santa Sam, to clean and to straighten out the arrow. So the idea of straight speech means clear, articulate speech, you know, when something is straight, then you can tell where it began, you can tell where it ends, you can tell how long it is. But if you think of a knot, or a piece of rope, or
cables nowadays, right, they're all jumbled together, you don't know where the beginning is, you don't know where the end is. The idea is when a lie expects us to speak with a Lakota studied, that we have to speak in very clear, logical, this is where we began, this is where we ended, don't go all over the place. You know how often in court trials and testimony, people are asked to give testimony? And they say, Did you or did you not know about this? Well, when I was five years old, I my grandmother used to say, that wasn't what you were asked. Did you say yes or no question? And they give you all kinds of Oh, in The Times up for the testimony, oh, you gotta go. This people
using stories and jumbled speech to get around having to speak what actually has to be said? politically correct answers, maneuvering answers. That's the that's the opposite of Alcoa studied, don't behind flowery words, and vocabulary to say what needs to be said is it's either yes, or no, it's either true or its false. So be clear, in your logic, in your speech, when people hear you speak, they should know what point was it? You know, how often does it happen? You talk to somebody, and after 10 minutes, you're like, so what are you talking about?
Because you don't know where the conversation is going. Allah expects us to be clear and purposeful, and it's Congress in our conversation, which is why this is tied to the final meaning of the word. You know, Imran studied a costed speech that has a purpose, that has a purpose, when we speak, we should have the purpose very clear in our mind, and that's easy to say, was very hard to think about it comes sometimes, the only purpose you have in speaking is to annoy someone. Sometimes the only purpose you have in speeches to bother someone, or to make fun of someone, or to agitate someone, or to see how bad this gets to start a fire. Maybe that's the only purpose you have in speech. Maybe
you have no thought about why you're even opening your mouth. But when we have colon studied, then we're very clear every time we open our mouth, what good intention do we have? What good will this serve? We have to think ahead of our words, you know, and choose you know, another idea that I explained in a different color. We'll call a body a hula t oxen, tell my servants tell my slaves, they should say that which is better. So stop for a second if you're about to respond or say something in your head, if I say this, this this or this word, which which is the best choice, which one should I choose to say that's going to produce good, which is going to have the best purpose
met? What purpose will it meet? You know, this is the the the the essence of good speech and inshallah Allah. Now that I've dedicated this club by just defining what a cola salad means. I'm excited to cover in the next quarter. What is the benefit of it like what you know, when we do good deeds, there are benefits in this life, and there are benefits in the next life. And a lot of times when you think of good deeds, you think of the benefits in the next life, Allah will reward us in the era. But this particular good deed and cola studied, based on unit straightforward speech, based on an awareness of Allah, it actually has benefits in this life in the Quran. Allah is telling us
that this will actually give you a lot of benefits in this life. And that's what he's going to describe in the next coming phrase. And we're going to dedicate a clip just to that, what are the benefits of bringing this into our lives? And how are our lives going to become better as a result barakallahu li walakum for Annie takim when I finally what year, it was