WORDS as sharp as sWORDS ⚔️

1-1-Cosplay-Free-Shipping-Sword-Movie-Lord-of-The-Rings-The-Hobbit-Frodo-Baggins-72cm.jpg_220x220.jpg
Words can be sharp, as sharp as a sword,
Sometimes we need to let them out because of the stuff we hoard.
But before you speak, take my advice on board,
Think before you speak, think of your Lord.
Don’t let your words out loosely, like marbles rolling down the road,
The cost of such a tongue is astronomical, one which you can’t afford.
When you speak, speak clearly, not like deciphering a code,
Some murmur and mutter, like they’re in sleep 😴 mode!
Using hurtful words can sometimes strike a chord,
They may get you in trouble or attract a nasty horde (a crowd).
We all make mistakes and we are all flawed,
We need to ensure before we wag our tongues our words are pored (examined).
If you have nothing good to say, keep your lips 👄 sewed,
Don’t let your words out, let them be stored.
Otherwise, on Qiyamah you will carry a heavy load,
Because words can be sharp, as sharp as a sWORD!🗡
Sword_topNteaser
Ismail ibn Nazir Satia (one who is in dire needs of Allah’s forgiveness, mercy and pleasure).
19 Rabiul Awwal 1440
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Bullying in Islam

bully

In the name of Allah, the most Beneficent, the most Merciful.

Bullying in Islam

Bullying is against Islam as it entails injustice being done towards an individual by another.  Those that engage in bullying actually have a weak nature and want to compensate for that weakness by trying to be ‘superior’ to others that they deem inferior to themselves.

Bullying is a form of oppression. Islam explicitly forbids all forms of oppression and injustice.  Sayiduna Jabir Bin Abdullah (Radiallahu Anhu( narrates that the Prophet of Allah (Sallallahu Alahi Wasalam) said “Be on your guard against oppression, for oppression is a darkness on the Day of Resurrection.”   (Sahih Muslim)

In a Hadith Qudsi, Allah (SWA) has said: ‘I shall take revenge on the oppressor in this life and the next.  I shall take revenge on someone who saw a person being oppressed and was able to help him but did not help him.’   (Tabraani)

If you are being bullied, especially at school, you should not remain silent but instead inform those who have authority.

Only Allah Knows Best

Mohammed Tosir Miah

Darul Ifta Birmingham

Islam Says NO to Bullyinghttp://muslimmatters.org/2012/02/24/bullying-islam-everything-in-between/

Noora runs into the house and slams the door behind her.  She bounds up the stairs and her mother hears her bedroom door slam.  She audibly sighs sadly thinking to herself, “She had another bad day at school.  I wish she would talk to me about it.”  Noora curls up on her bed and cries quietly wondering what she did to deserve what she goes through at school everyday.  Sometimes she even finds herself wishing she could just get a physical “beat down” rather than suffer through the daily emotional torment of being teased, ostracized and singled out for abuse.  She feels as though her mother won’t understand what she’s going through and she also doesn’t want to disappoint her by confessing that she just doesn’t know how to handle the bullies.  She feels hopeless and she doesn’t know to whom to turn so she cries quietly in her room, and each day holds in more and more of the torment she faces.

Bullying was once viewed as a necessary rite of passage of childhood, something children simply must endure.  However, bullying is not simply something children will mature out of; rather, bullying can result in serious harm and long-term consequences.  Bullying can take different forms, including[1]:

  • Physical bullying: includes hitting, punching, kicking and other types of physical harm, as well as destruction of a child’s property.
  • Verbal bullying: includes teasing, name-calling, taunting and racial slurs, as well as spreading gossip or malicious rumors.
  • Cyberbullying: includes harassing emails, instant messages and text messages, as well as intimidating or threatening websites, blogs or posts.

Parents often feel completely powerless as they witness their child’s tears day-after-day, as much a part of the afterschool routine as homework.  Bullying has reached a new peak in our society and with tragedies such as the shooting at Columbine, bullying has received a great deal more attention than it used to. With the advent of technology, bullying no longer occurs exclusively within the walls of schools.  Rather, social media has provided another opportunity to bullies who seek to demean others.  Home is no longer a safe haven for victims of bullying; a Facebook status can hurt just as much, if not more, than hearing the typed words spoken aloud.

The Victims of Bullying

Being the victim of bullying can evoke a great deal of shame in children and teens (and in adults as well, since bullying is not an epidemic that exclusively targets children).  Therefore, your child may not confide in you and may go through great pains to hide the fact that s/he is being bullied.  The signs may not be as visible as a black eye; although children are often physically intimidated, bullying can be also be targeted in a way that leaves psychological and emotional bruises.  Some things to keep a lookout for, which may signal that your child is being bullied includes (but is not limited to): damage to personal belongings, unexplained injuries, a decline in academic performance, physical complaints (i.e. stomach aches, headaches, tiredness, etc.), reluctance when going to school or riding the bus, few friends, or a noticeable change in sleeping or eating habits.

There are certain qualities that may make some children more susceptible to bullying.  These include the following characteristics: cautious, sensitive, quiet, withdrawn, shy, anxious, insecure, low self-esteem, unhappy, lack of a close friend, relate better to adults than peers, physically weaker than peers.  Bullying is a cycle, so these characteristics can be just as much a consequence as a partial cause of being victimized.  There is also another subset of people within this bullying cycle who are characterized as bully/victims, who are both bullies and victims of bullying simultaneously.  Bully/victims tend to experience a greater variety of symptomology including both internalized (anxiety, depression, suicidal thoughts) and externalized (hyperactivity, rule-breaking) issues[2].

The Bullies

Although the focus of prevention and interventions are often on victims of bullying, it is important to provide support to bullies as well.  As the Prophet (peace be upon him) said,  “Help your brother, whether he is an oppressor or he is oppressed.” The Prophet was asked: “It is right to help him if he is oppressed, but how should we help him if he is an oppressor?” He replied: “By preventing him from oppressing others.” (Ṣahīh Bukhāri, Volume 3, Ḥadīth 624)

From this ḥadīth, we learn the importance of helping those who are oppressed but, even more profoundly, the need to assist oppressors by stopping them from committing this infringement on the rights of others.  Bullies are often misconstrued as people who simply take pleasure in the pain of others.  However, research has found that some are quite complex and somewhat of a mystery.  Many research studies have found that bullies are more likely to exhibit behavioral issues including aggressiveness, hyperactivity, attention deficits and conduct problems.  However, contrary to what is normally considered of bullies, one research study found that they suffer from depression, anxiety, psychosomatic disorders, and eating disorders to the same extent as those who were victimized by their bullying[3].  Some things that may signal that your child is bullying others include: being aggressive with others, gets sent to detention often, has unexplained new belongings or extra money, quickly blames others, refuses to accept responsibility for actions, and has a need to win or be the best at everything.

Verbal, Emotional & Psychological (Nonphysical) Bullying

Interactions between individuals, from an Islamic point of view, are governed by the fundamental right of sanctity of life, honor, and property.  Therefore, anything that compromises these rights should be stopped.  In Sūrat’l- ujurāt (49:10-12), Allah says, Verily, the believers are brothers…

  •   let not some people mock others, for they may be better than themselves,
  • nor (let) women (mock) women who may be better than themselves.
  • And do not slander yourselves, nor revile by (offensive) nicknames
  • O you who believe, avoid (indulging in) much suspicion; truly, some suspicion is a sin.
  • And do not spy or backbite one another; would any of you like to eat the flesh of his dead brother? You would abhor that.
  • And be conscious of Allah; indeed, Allah is Relenting, Merciful.” 

These verses emphasize the non-physical face of bullying.  Verbal and emotional bullying can have even greater and longer-lasting negative effects on the victims than physical bullying.  Many of us may have grown up asserting the maxim, “sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me,” however, we soon realize that sometimes words can hurt more than anything else.

According to Rachel Simmons’s Odd Girl Out: The Hidden Culture of Aggression in Girls[4], this type of bullying is particularly common among girls and often goes unnoticed by non-participants (such as teachers and parents).  Due to the expectation of girls to be sweet, nice and caring, direct aggression is deemed unacceptable in them.  However, girls are just as likely as boys to experience anger, a natural human emotion, so they engage one another in nonphysical, alternative forms of aggression.  This includes:

  •  Relational aggression: acts that harm others through damage (or the threat of damage) to relationships or feelings of acceptance, friendship, or group inclusion.
    •  This is seen through behaviors such as ignoring someone to punish them, excluding someone socially for revenge, using negative body language or facial expressions, sabotaging someone’s relationships, etc.
  • Indirect aggression: the bully avoids confrontation using covert behaviors.  In this way, it may seem as though there was no intent to hurt anyone and others may be used as vehicles to cause pain to the targeted person.
    •  This is seen in the spreading of rumors, backbiting, “accidentally” knocking over someone’s books, etc.
  • Social aggression: intent to damage the self-esteem or social status of a targeted individual.
    • This can include rumor spreading, backbiting, and social exclusion.

Rather than using physical intimidation as a weapon, relationships are used for leverage.  What could be worse than the threat of loneliness and social isolation as you wander friendlessly through the halls of school?  Hearing lies spread about you to cause you to lose your friends and fall into a downward spiral of lowering self-esteem?  One of the issues inherent in these forms of alternative aggressions is the fact that they can easily be committed under the radar of others.  Teachers are often caught unaware when their students speak with them about this type of bullying and don’t know how to deal with it since it is not easily spotted.  When engaging in covert aggression, the bullies often seem like the type of people who would never mistreat someone; it’s the perfect disguise for accomplishing as much damage as possible while ensuring their actions are undetectable to others.

Girls in this type of situation often have nowhere to turn; they may feel too ashamed to speak to their parents or teachers about the torment they’re enduring because they may feel as though they have failed at a fundamental rite of passage – making friends.  There is also a great deal of uncertainty regarding these alternative aggressions; girls may question, “Did she just bump into me on purpose?;” “Did she roll her eyes at something I said?;” “Is that note she’s passing about me?” It’s easy to know when someone gives you a black eye, but if you’re uncertain whether others are shutting you out or teasing you behind your back, it becomes much more difficult to discuss it with others.  By the same token, many girls withstand emotional abuse from their close friends in order to maintain the inclusion as a part of a group; they fear that the creation of any conflict (including voicing their concerns) will cause them to lose a relationship.  Due to this, anger continues to simmer and issues pile up and are rarely addressed.

Practical Tips & Possible Solutions

It is incredibly important to arm our children, our students, and ourselves with the proper methods of coping with bullying.  This is not simply a rite of passage that children must endure. Furthermore, the issues brought about by bullying can quickly, and dangerously, spiral out of control.  In the next segment, practical tips and possible solutions will be offered to promote healthy relationships.


[1] Mayo Clinic Staff (2010, August 24). Bullying: Help Your Child Handle a School Bully. Children’s Issues.  Retrieved January 19, 2012, from http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/bullying/MH00126

[2] Olweus, D. (1999). Sweden. In P. K. Smith, Y. Morita, J. Junger-Tas, D. Olweus, R. Cata- lano, & P. Slee (Eds.), The nature of school bullying: A cross national perspective (pp. 7–27). London: Routledge.

[3] Kaltiala-Heino, R., Rimpelä, M., Rantanen, P., & Rimpelä, A. (2000). Bullying at school. An indicator of adolescents at risk for mental disorders. Journal of Adolescence, 23, 661–674.

[4] Simmons, Rachel (2002).  Odd Girl Out: The Hidden Culture of Aggression in Girls.  San Diego, CA: Hartcourt Trade Publishing.

bullying girls

Dhulm: Oppression or Depression?

In the Name of Allah the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful.

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All praise is due to Allah, the all-knowing, the all-seeing and we beseech Allah to send His noblest blessings on the Seal of the Prophets, Our Master and Prophet Muhammad (Sallallaho Alayhi Wasallam).

The first crime or sin we could say, committed on the surface of the earth was perpetrated by the son of the noble Prophet Adam (peace be upon him) whose name was Qabil RH. As it is known, the sin he committed was no ordinary sin; it was none other than murder and what degree of murder could be worse than murdering a family member, his own blood brother, Habil RH. So ever since that day, every person that gets killed unjustly, the burden of the sin not only falls on the killer, but also on Qabil RH as he initiated killings.

In this worldly life, we see many forms of oppression, and Almighty Allah allows this oppression. Many people, Muslim and Non-Muslim ask why? It is NOT because Allah is pleased to see his servants committing ‘dhulm’ , rather it is something termed as ‘al-Istidraaj’. Something you could loosely explain as Allah loosening the rope and giving respite to stop and repent. It is when Allah Almighty gives fortunes to someone despite Him not being pleased with him/her. Our Holy Prophet (peace be upon him) explained in a Hadith (Prophetic Tradition), “When you see that Allah Almighty gives good fortunes to his slaves who are always committing sins (disobedient), know that the person is being given istidraj by Allah.” (At-Tabrani, Ahmad and Al-Baihaqi)

However, it is the duty of others to stop dhulm as is explained in the Prophetic Tradition (Hadith),“Help your brother; be he the oppressor or the oppressed.” It was said, “O Messenger of Allah, I shall help him if he is oppressed but how do I help him if he is the oppressor?” He said:”Prevent him from oppression, that is you helping him.” Bukhari and Muslim.

But what exactly is oppression? It is normally termed for what goes on in war and when one takes another’s right. The literal meaning of al-Dhulm is, ‘to place something somewhere it does not belong’. For example, if one were to place his shoe on his head that would be classed as al-Dhulm as that is not the correct place for the shoe. But dhulm (oppression) in Islam has a much broader and deeper meaning. We only need to pick up a newspaper or turn on the television to see the oppression that goes on around the world, the young children suffering, the babies dying, women as well as the elderly tortured and their menfolk beaten and humiliated in front of them – the world accepts this as wrong, no matter which creed or race you are from and no matter which religion you follow.

But what I would like to shed light on is the dhulm you and I may commit; even though we would never like to be associated with dhulm or be called a ‘dhalim’ (oppressor), but sometimes we do commit oppression knowingly,or unknowingly.  Because oppression is not just what we see in Gaza or Syria, oppression is also what goes on here, in the UK; a man who beats his wife is oppression, not treating your children fairly and equally is oppression, to show ingratitude and display disobedience to your parents is oppression, to deprive a sibling of their rights to inheritance is oppression, bullying and harassing someone weaker than you in school or college or at a workplace is oppression, taking one’s anger out on an innocent individual is oppression, showing favouritism at a work place to certain employees due to unjustified reasons such as family connections, being from the same race or same sex (sometimes the opposite sex simply because they are attractive) is oppression, being ungrateful to your spouse or not spending time with him/her is oppression, not letting a father see his child without a valid reason is oppression and relaying lies or slandering someone out of jealousy and spite is oppression! The list really can go on, unfortunately.

The very sad reality is oppression is everywhere and for many of us, our hearts bleed because others cause us to bleed. Usually it is those closest to us; a family member or a relative. Hence the title of this article has been named, ‘Dhulm: Oppression or depression?’ despite the fact dhulm is normally translated as oppression it can consequently ‘lead’ to depression. And this is what we see when we look around the world; people are either suffering from oppression or depression, they are either bleeding or weeping! My little message to every brother to every sister out there who is suffering, be it equal to a prick of a thorn or the weight of a mountain, “DO NOT DESPAIR IN THE MERCY OF ALLAH!” (39:53). “Indeed, Allah is with the patient ones” (2:249). We are promised time and again in Qur’an and Hadith that Allah will give us justice for the oppression we face in this world and the injustices we have  to endure. Abu Hurayrah reported that the Prophet (Allah bless him and grant him peace) said, “Give people their rights. Even the hornless sheep will take retaliation from the horned sheep (on Qiyamah)” (Adabul Mufrad).

Nothing is hidden from Allah, not even the black ant crawling on a stone in the darkness of the night nor its footprint! Let oppressors think not that Allah is unaware! Allah Almighty says, “And never think that Allah is unaware of what the wrongdoers do. He only delays them for a Day when eyes will stare [in horror]” (14:42). In another verse, “And those who have wronged are going to know to what [kind of] return they will be paid back” (26:227). And to serve as a final reminder and warning, Jabir ibn ‘Abdullah reported that the Prophet (Allah bless him and grant him peace) said, “Fear injustice. Injustice will appear as darkness on the Day of Rising. Fear avarice. Avarice destroyed people before you and led them to shed one another’s blood and to make lawful what was unlawful for them” (Adabul Mufrad).

To conclude In Sha Allah, we pray Allah protects us from committing dhulm and from being the victims of dhulm, as well as giving us the ability to help the oppressed and stop an oppressor, as the saying goes, ‘Evil spreads not because of the violence of bad people, rather because of the silence of good people’ .

Ismail Ibn Nazir Satia (In dire need of Allah’s mercy, forgiveness and pleasure).

27th Shawwal 1435