Lying is No Way to Support Our Prophet

Dr. `Abd al-Wahhâb al-Turayrî
The cartoons which sought to belittle the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) revealed the depth of the love that the Muslims hold in their heart for Allah's Messenger. This love made itself manifest in the great undertakings the Muslims engaged in as a response to those cartoons. There has been a renewed interest in studying the Prophet's life. There has been an increase in the study of his Sunnah, his guidance, and his noble character. Organizations and programs have been established to come to the Prophet's support and to educate people about him. These efforts are laudable, and the Prophet (peace be upon him) is worthy of all of these efforts and more.

At the same time, it is most startling to learn that some people have taken an ignoble course – one that is criminal – and have resorted to circulate lies and falsehoods regarding this matter. I do not believe such behavior is motivated by a genuine love for the Prophet (peace be upon him) and a desire to support him, but rather there is maliciousness behind their desire to create these falsehoods. Once the rumor is out, other people who are sincere and pure of heart pass the misinformation on, beliveving that it came from a reliable and trustworthy source.

One example of the type of lies being circulated is a supposed "fatwâ" from the Permanent Committee for Research and Fatwa in Saudi Arabia, assigned the number (20216). The alleged fatwa claims that it is forbidden to deal with Denmark, travel to that country, receive visitors from that country, purchase that country's goods, or deal with anything associated with Denmark. This message was then appended with the following words: "Support your Prophet by forwarding this fatwa".

Anyone who reads this falsehood should be able to discern that it does not even have a hint of scholarship about its content or its language. However, in spite of the fact that members of the Permanent Committee have publicly denied its veracity, the false fatwa continues to spread from one well meaning person to another by way of text messaging.

Everyone has the right to express his or her views about the idea of a commercial boycott. However, no one has the right to attribute to people what they did not say. It is especially serious to attributed to scholars opinions and rulings they did not express.

The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: "One of the falsest of lies is for a man to claimed to have dreamed what he did not see in his dream." [Sahîh al-Bukhârî]

If it is one of the "falsest of lies" to lie about what one has dreamed – and this is something that has no bearing on the right of others – then how bad must it be to forge a lie against the scholars of Islam, who are the inheritors of the prophets? We must keep in mind that when they issue an Islamic legal resolution, they are in effect "signing in Allah's name", as Ibn al-Qayyim describes it.

"Glory to Allah! This is a great calumny" [Sûrah al-Nûr: 16]

Alas, those who have a sickness in their hearts feel elation when they see how far and wide their lies have spread. This is why they keep telling lies, which they know some decent but credulous people will pass on in good faith. At times, a scholar hear these things from pious people, and then become an unwitting but effective vehicle for the circulation of those lies.

One of the most recent examples of such a lie – though it certainly will not be the last – is a text message being circulated about how much Denmark has suffered from the boycott. It claims that the Danish ambassador, Prime Minister, and national television station are trying to end the boycott in which the country has allegedly lost two billion Euros. It also claims that if the embargo goes on for another seven months, the losses will amount to 40 billion. The message then ends with: "Pass on this message to boost morale, so people will know what our religion is worth. Pass it on. Do not be stringy regarding Allah's Messenger (peace be upon him)."

This is a naked lie, a daydream concocted by those who get a sick thrill out of seeing how far their lies will travel. We should be cognizant of the fact that their message does not make reference to any news source, though this kind of information is the general province of the news media. Moreover, the practical reality of the world economy puts a lie to their claim. The total of all Danish imports into OIC member states amounts to no more than 3% of Danish exports. [Source: AG Group Consultants]

It is their right that we should remind them that our Prophet (peace be upon him) during his lifetime, was subjected to every manner of abuse and was the brunt of every conceivable lie and slander. He never once responded with anything but the pure and unadulterated truth. He remained, always, truthful and trustworthy, worthy of the epithet "al-Amîn".

This is his way – his Sunnah – and it behooves those who follow him to put it into practice.

We should also remind them that the Prophet (peace be upon him) was given a chance to see the punishments that people would face in the Hereafter. One thing he saw was a man lying flat on his back and another man standing over his head with an
iron hook. The man standing would put the hook in one side of the man's mouth and tear off that side of his face to the back (of the neck) and similarly tear his nose from front to back and his eye from front to back. Then he would turn to the other side of the man's face and do the same. Hardly would he completed that side before the first side was restored to its normal state. Then he would go back and did it over again.

Later, the angels who were with the Prophet (peace be uponhim) told him: "As for the man you came across, the sides of whose mouth, nostrils and eyes were being torn off from front to back, he would go out of his house in the morning and tells lies that spreads all over the world.” [Sahîh al-Bukhârî]

It is also their right to be reminded that lying can never be a way of supporting our faith. It is, rather, a way to the Hellfire. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: "Lying is evildoing and evildoing leads to Hell. A man will continue to tell and chase after lies until he is recorded with Allah as a liar. [Sahîh al-Bukhârî and Sahîh Muslim]

Finally, we must remind ourselves that the first step we must take to support our Prophet (peace be upon him) is to follow his guidance, obey him, and put his Sunnah into practice in our lives. He taught us to be honest and tuthful.

Allah says to us: "O you who believe, fear Allah, and be among those who are truthful."

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