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Does Profanity Entail Shirk?

Ustadh Farid Dingle clears up a misunderstanding about profanity, swearing, oaths, and shirk.

I’d like to ask about swearing (as in taking an oath). I used to have a habit of using English profanity a lot of times. I’m currently working on it, and Alhamdulillah, I’ve made progress. Instead of using vulgar words, I usually use the more toned-down version of them, like “oh man,” “oh boy,” “darn,” etc.

I’ve read from various sources that swearing in the name of someone or something other than Allah is considered shirk. What does it mean by taking an oath not in the name of Allah? Is saying “minced oaths” included? Does saying, for example, “Oh boy, I’m so mad at this” count as one?

I’m having a hard time understanding the link between the connotation of these phrases and how the law should be applied, since English is not my first language. Thank you for your help.

Such words do not constitute oaths. An oath is when you swear by Allah.

Please see What is the Difference Between a Promise, an Oath, and a Vow?

Training yourself to be grateful

It is worth trying to force yourself to say things like “alhamdulillah” instead because the tongue teaches the heart, and one should thank Allah for everything, and not object to His decree. Please also see Divine Decree, Contentment, and Lessons From the Prophet’s Life.

Over time, if you strive to force yourself to thank Allah for the calamities that befall one, it because easier and easier as if it were are part of the way you are.

Watching One’s Tongue

The Prophet, Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, “When the Son of Adam awakes, all of his limbs denigrate his tongue. They say, ‘Fear Allah concerning us (limbs of the body), for we are only with you (after all). If you go straight, we go straight, and if you go crooked, we go crooked.’” (Tirmidhi)

May Allah make our hearts, minds, bodies and tongues pure and true. Amin.

Farid

Checked and approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani.

Making Fun of Friends and Educational Material with Foul Language

Answered by Ustadh Tabraze Azam
Question: Salamu alaikum
1.Is it permitted to make jokes about a friend’s weight or the way a person eats if this person is not hurt by this kind of humor?
The Prophet (peace be upon him) said:
“The believer can do no worse than belittle his brother”.

Does it mean that if the brother is hurt by the jokes then it is “belittling”?
2. In class we watch short clips with bad language during the lesson. Is it obligatory for me to leave the room? What is the general rule for bad language?
Answer: Wa alaikum assalam wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh,
I pray that you are in the best of health and faith, insha’Allah.
Contempt of a Fellow Believer
The Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him and give him peace) said, “Do not envy one another, do not bid against on another, bidding in order to raise the price, do not hate one another, do not turn your backs on one another, and none of you should sell against the sale of anyone else. Be slaves of Allah, brothers. A Muslim is the brother of another Muslim: he should not wrong him nor scorn him nor disappoint him. Godfearing is here,” and he pointed to his breast three times. “It is enough evil for man to scorn his Muslim brother. The blood, property and honour of a Muslim is unlawful to another Muslim.”
Belittling another believer would be humiliating them, disgracing them,​ ​or ​holding them in contempt, ​​and​ the like ​​.
As for joking, there are conditions for ​their​ permissibility. Please refer to the following: Is It Impermissible to Tell Inappropriate Jokes? and: Lying When Joking
​​Bad Language
In general, it is impermissible to swear. ​However, such rulings don’t apply to non-Muslims.
Please see: The Ruling on Swearing
And Allah alone gives success.
Wassalam,
Tabraze Azam
Checked & Approved by Faraz Rabbani