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LANALLAH __Islamic BlogZine__
Tuesday, July 26, 2005

The Triple Filter Test

The Prophet (PBUH) is reported to have said, "Ghibah is worse than zina (adultery)."

During the golden Abbasid period, one of the scholars in Baghdad, the capital of Muslim caliphate at that time, was reputed to hold knowledge in high esteem.

One day an acquaintance met the great scholar and said, "Do you know what I just heard about your friend?"

The Scholar replied, "Hold on a minute, before telling me anything I'd like you to pass a little test. It's called the Triple Filter Test."

The Man questioned, "Triple Filter Test?"

The Scholar replying said, "That's right, before you talk to me about my friend it might be a good idea to take a moment and filter what you're going to say." He continued, "That's why I call it the triple filter test. The first filter is Truth. Have you made absolutely sure that what you are about to tell me is true?"

The Man answered in the negative," No, actually I just heard about it and..."

"All right, so you don't really know if it's true or not." Interrupted the scholar, "Now let's try the second filter, the filter of Goodness. Is what you are about to tell me about my friend something good?"

The Man answered, "No, on the contrary..."

The Scholar interrupting again, "So, you want to tell me something bad about him, but you're not certain it's true. You may still pass the test though, because there's one filter left. The filter of Usefulness is what you want to tell me about my friend going to be useful to me?"

The Man thinking for a moment, gave an answer, "No, not really."

The Scholar then questioned his companion, "Well, if what you want to tell me is neither true nor good nor even useful, why tell it to me at all?"

"O you who believe! Avoid much suspicions, indeed some suspicions are sins. And spy not, neither backbite one another. Would one of you like to eat the flesh of his dead brother? You would hate it (so hate backbiting). And fear Allah. Verily, Allah is the One Who accepts repentance, Most Merciful. (Chapter 49, Verse 12)


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