Exposing The Shortcoming of Others ?
While they were both chatting, his friend said, “Do you know so and so (name of a person) whom you always considered as your best friend? Well, he has been speaking ill about you to others”
The wise man neither considered this information useful nor was he impressed by its conveyor.
He just looked at his friend and said,
“You have committed three acts of evil and treachery. Firstly, you have displeased my heart against a brother in faith. Secondly, you have unduly diverted my heart and made it occupied with something unpleasant. And thirdly, you have lowered yourself in my eyes and proved wicked by exposing others”.
In the verses of Sura al-Qalam mentioned above, generally teaches us not to pay attention to a type of mean and lowly people who always engage in defaming and exposing faults of others, even to the extent of slandering – fabricating defects against others.
Imam Ali bin Abi Talib (as) has said,
“The worst of the people are those who do not forgive errors and do not cover up short-comings of others”.
The vice and bad habit of exposing the short-coming and defects of others is caused by jealousy and hostility. It leads to the spread of corruption and enmity among people. It causes ill-feeling and disunity in a society or even at home within one’s own family.
And this why the habit of covering defects of others has been praised and encouraged in Islam.
Imam Ali (as) guides us with the following words:
“Keep silent and cover up (short-comings of people) so that you remain secured and safe”
“One who covers up (short-comings) of a Muslim, Allah would reward him by covering him up in this world and in the hereafter”
Quite often the one with big mouth in fault-finding and exposing others, has in his own self such sins and defects as to require much attention in rectifying before his concern for others.
Thus Imam Ali (as) suggests;
“Whoever is inquisitive about the defects of others, should commence this and do first with his own self”.
The Imam (as) warning people against friendship of such people further says: “Refrain from associating with the fault-finders because their friends too, cannot remain safe from their harm”.