A secret is that which takes place secretly between a person and his companion. It is not permissible for one to spread this secret or to disclose it to anyone. It is the same if he told you not to disclose it, or if this were indicated by his actions or body language, or by the nature of his speech, that he would not like anyone to know about it
An example of the first case: Direct Speech – A person tells you something then he says, “Don’t tell anyone,”; it becomes a trust with you.
An example of the second case: His actions or body language – He speaks to you, and during his speech to you, he is turning around, fearing that someone might hear him; the meaning of this action is that he doesn’t want anyone to know of it.
An example of the third case: The nature of the speech – That which he informs you of is something by whose mention he would be embarrassed, or whose disclosure (to others) he fears, etc. It becomes forbidden for you to disclose and spread this secret.
Allaah (Ta’ala) says: “And fulfill (every) covenant. Verily! the covenant, will be questioned about.”[Surat al-Israa 17:34]
This means that if someone took a promise upon something with words or actions, it is incumbent upon him to fulfill that promise.
One kind of covenant or promise is the type of conditions that occur between people in terms of selling,renting, hiring, mortgage, and other than that. All these contracts or conditions are considered promises.Likewise, what occurs between the Muslims and non-Muslims is also a covenant. And it is incumbent upon the Muslims to fulfill it.
Allaah (Ta’ala) has divided those disbelievers with whom a covenant is made into three categories in Surat At-Tawbah (in the Qur’an):
1. Those who always keep their covenants – These are the ones whose covenants it is obligatory to fulfill.
2. Those who break their covenants – Such are the ones with whom there is no covenant because they breach their contracts. Allaah (Ta’ala) says, “Will you not fight a people who have violated their oaths (pagans of Makkah) and intended to expel the Messenger, while they did attack you first?” [Surat At-Tawbah 9:13]
3. Those who have not broken their covenant and neither have they made clear that they will continue to fulfill it, rather we fear that they will betray and breach the covenant. About this kind, Allaah (Ta’ala) said, “If you (O Muhammad (Sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam)) fear treachery from any people throw back (their covenant) to them (so as to be) on equal terms (that there will be no more covenant between you and them).” [Surat al-Anfaal 8:58] Meaning, say to them that there is no covenant between us and you until the matter is clear.
The key matter is that whenever people place conditions on each other, it becomes a covenant. For example, the binding or adherence of the employees with regards to the performance of their work; of that is adhering to the rules of his workplace – coming on time, leaving after the work timings are over,being sincere in his work, etc.
Abiding by such conditions is mandatory. If one does not wish to fulfill it, then he should leave the job,and be free in whatever he does! This is because the employer has not forced you to work, rather the employee is the one who applied and accepted the job. Therefore, he should abide by the conditions of that job in everything. Otherwise, he may leave it and be free in what he wants to do and no one will take him to account except Allaah.
The Messenger of Allaah (Sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) said: “Among the worst type of people (in the sight of Allaah) on the Day of Judgement is a man who enjoys his wife’s intimate company, and sheen joys his intimate company, then in the morning he discloses her secret which the wife does not like anyone to know." Or that she discloses his secret. This means telling the people, “I did such-and-such last night with my wife…” may Allaah protect us! In this manner, the absent one becomes as if he witnessed the occurrence.
All of this is forbidden, and the one who does it will be the worst of people in the Sight of Allaah on the Day of Judgement. Thus, the secrets in the house, in the bedrooms, and other than that, must be guarded and not disclosed to anyone. Whoever keeps the secret of his brother, Allaah will keep hidden his secrets, and the recompense of the deed is of the nature of the deed
Check out these related posts:
- Truthfulness (Part 5) : The Categories of As-Sidq (Truthfulness)
- Truthfulness (Part 4) : The Categories of As-Sidq (Truthfulness)
- Truthfulness (Part 3) : The Merits of Truthfulness
- Truthfulness (Part 2) : The Importance of Truthfulness
- ‘Truthfulness’ in the light of the Qur’an and the Sunnah (Part 1)
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