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Rules of a Muslim Home (#3) - Speaking in a Soft Tone

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The Quraan Majeed declares that Allah Ta’ala has made the home of a believer a place of peace and tranquillity (Surah Nahl, v80). Thus we understand that among the etiquettes of a Muslim home is that members of the household refrain from doing anything that destroys the peace and tranquillity. This includes thoughtless and loud disturbing speech. 

It is mentioned in a Hadith that “A Muslim is he who other Muslims are safe from the harms of his tongue and his hands.” (Saheeh Bukhari #9) 

People living in the same house are more than neighbours and more than just friends. Therefore, it is imperative that they should not hurt one another in any way. Among the most annoying and hurtful behaviour is making noise at home or raising one’s voice so loudly that it distresses others. 

A woman, especially, should be extra careful when speaking. Speaking in a loud tone shows a lack of self-respect and modesty in women. If due to some necessity she has to raise her voice, and there is a fear of strange men listening to it, then she should be careful not to talk in a seductive tone. Rather her speech should be short but not sweet.

Allah Ta’ala has mentioned in the Quraan Majeed addressing the pure wives of Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam):

“Do not be soft in speech, lest he in whose heart is a disease (of hypocrisy, or evil desire for adultery) should be moved with desire” (Ahzaab, v32)

At times we switch on the radio forcing the entire neighbourhood to hear what we are listening to, or we tend to read or sing in such loud voices that disturbs others around us. Furthermore, sometimes people at home argue and yell at each other to such an extent that the entire neighbourhood hears them. Such acts would obviously be regarded as ungracious and ill mannered.

At times children can be heard crying whilst their parents are not concerned at all about them. They continue chatting over the phone or go on with their mundane work totally ignoring their children.

Therefore the following points should be kept in mind:

1. If there are guests at home and a female has to call the attention of any man of the household, she should rather knock on the door instead of calling out for him. In this manner she will be able to serve her guests as well as protect her hayaa and shame. Indeed, this is a great form of modesty. In the same way if she has to answer the phone, then her speech should be restricted to bare necessity. She should also not speak in sweet or alluring tones.

2. If someone knocks at the door or rings the bell, the men in the house should answer. If there are no men at home, only then should the women answer from behind the purdah by speaking as little as possible without using alluring tones.

3. Always be considerate to one’s neighbours. Remember the rights that Allah Ta’ala has prescribed for them. Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) has described a person who has caused harm to his neighbours to be bereft of Imaan. (Saheeh Bukhari #6016)

4. Do not turn on radios or cd players so loudly that they disturb others.

5. Tend to children immediately when they are in need of attention.