Defending The Honour Of A Muslim Brother


The Hadith of Rasulullah Sallallahu alayhi wasallam states:

“He who defends the honour of his (Muslim) brother, Allah will secure his face against the Fire on the Day of Resurrection.” [Jami al-Tirmidhi]

1. I have been in situations where Muslims (especially Ulama) are defamed. This sometimes happens in face to face conversations and sometimes on social media. 

I feel that it is my duty to defend my Muslim brother. 

However, a person told me that if I do not know the background to the entire situation/incident, I should keep silent and I should not defend my Muslim brother. 

I wish to ascertain whether or not I should defend my Muslim brother in such situations despite my insufficient knowledge of the entire background.

2. The person who told me this explains that if I do defend my Muslim brother in such a situation without full knowledge of the background, I am indirectly defaming and doubting the person who passed on the information. Is this the correct understanding? 


It is important to note that a person should not pass a decision without full knowledge of both disputing parties. However, one should not be gullible and believe everything one is told and rather try and get the full story before discussing further. However, if the discussion revolves around Ulama, the best cause would be not to discuss it at all.

Regarding this Allah Ta’aala says in the Holy Quran in Surah Hujuraat (49) verse 6:

يَٰٓأَيُّهَا ٱلَّذِينَ ءَامَنُوٓاْ إِن جَآءَكُمۡ فَاسِقُۢ بِنَبَإٖ فَتَبَيَّنُوٓاْ أَن تُصِيبُواْ قَوۡمَۢا بِجَهَٰلَةٖ فَتُصۡبِحُواْ عَلَىٰ مَا فَعَلۡتُمۡ نَٰدِمِينَ٦

O you who have Imaan! If any sinner (or anyone else) brings you any news, then verify it (investigate it to establish the truth), lest you should harm any nation unknowingly (because of being misinformed) and then become remorseful over your actions. (In this manner, false news will be nipped in the bud.) (Al-Quran)

Respect of the Ulama is also of utter importance and this is found in the following Hadeeth:

Sayyiduna ‘Ubadah ibn Samit (radiyallahu ‘anhu) narrates that Nabi ﷺ said: “He who does not respect our elders, and does not have mercy on our children, and does not acknowledge the rights of our Ulema, is not of my Ummah.” (Musnad Ahmad, 22755)

Keeping the above in mind, we should have good thoughts of every Muslim (especially Ulama) and stay away from bad thoughts and backbiting of any person. This is understood from the following verse in Surah Hujuraat (49) verse 12:

يَٰٓأَيُّهَا ٱلَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ ٱجۡتَنِبُواْ كَثِيرٗا مِّنَ ٱلظَّنِّ إِنَّ بَعۡضَ ٱلظَّنِّ إِثۡمٞۖ وَ لَا تَجَسَّسُواْ وَلَا يَغۡتَب بَّعۡضُكُم بَعۡضًاۚ أَيُحِبُّ أَحَدُكُمۡ أَن يَأۡكُلَ لَحۡمَ أَخِيهِ مَيۡتٗا فَكَرِهۡتُمُوهُۚ وَٱتَّقُواْ ٱللَّهَۚ إِنَّ ٱللَّهَ تَوَّابٞ رَّحِيمٞ١٢


O you who have Imaan! Refrain (stay away) from excessive assumption (suspicion and assuming evil things about people without verification). Verily, some assumptions are a sin. (Good assumptions about people are however encouraged.) (Al-Quran)

Furthermore, it is our duty as Muslims to ensure that we help our Muslim brothers whether they are right or wrong i.e. if they are correct, then to support them and if they are wrong then to help by correcting them. Regarding this, if someone informs us of any person’s wrongdoings and we do not have the ability to help them, then we should stop the person from backbiting and speaking ill of others.  This is supported from the following Hadeeth:

6952 – حَدَّثَنَا مُحَمَّدُ بْنُ عَبْدِ الرَّحِيمِ، حَدَّثَنَا سَعِيدُ بْنُ سُلَيْمَانَ، حَدَّثَنَا هُشَيْمٌ، أَخْبَرَنَا عُبَيْدُ اللَّهِ بْنُ أَبِي بَكْرِ بْنِ أَنَسٍ، عَنْ أَنَسٍ رَضِيَ اللَّهُ عَنْهُ، قَالَ: قَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ: «انْصُرْ أَخَاكَ ظَالِمًا أَوْ مَظْلُومًا» فَقَالَ رَجُلٌ: يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ، أَنْصُرُهُ إِذَا كَانَ مَظْلُومًا، أَفَرَأَيْتَ إِذَا كَانَ ظَالِمًا كَيْفَ أَنْصُرُهُ؟ قَالَ: «تَحْجُزُهُ، أَوْ تَمْنَعُهُ، مِنَ الظُّلْمِ فَإِنَّ ذَلِكَ نَصْرُهُ»(صحيح البخاري المكتبة السلفية)<

Rasoolullahﷺ  is reported to have said, “Help your brother whether he is an oppressor or oppressed.” A Sahabi Radhiallahu Anhu replied, “Oh Messenger of Allahﷺ  I will help him if he is oppressed, but what do you mean by helping the oppressor, how should I help him.” Rasoolullah ﷺ replied: “Stop him from his oppression, for that is helping him.” (Sahih Al Bukhari Volume 4 pg. 287 hadith no.6952)
It should also be borne in mind that by defending a Muslim brother, it does not directly or indirectly defame the informant in any way, but rather clarifies the misconception in his mind.

Checked and Approved By:

Mufti Muhammed Saeed Motara Saheb D.B.


عَنْ عُبَادَةَ بْنِ الصَّامِتِ، أَنَّ رَسُولَ اللهِ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ قَالَ: ” لَيْسَ مِنْ أُمَّتِي مَنْ لَمْ يُجِلَّ كَبِيرَنَا، وَيَرْحَمْ صَغِيرَنَا، وَيَعْرِفْ لِعَالِمِنَا “(مسند احمد، 22755)

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