Out of pride and conceit:
Conceit, one of Satan's characteristics, causes people to distance themselves
from upright morality and to adopt a morality resembling that of Satan.
Due to his arrogance, self-love, and groundless pride, Satan disobeyed
Allah and was thrown out of His sight.
Satan, whose pride revealed itself in his clear disobedience and low
morality, actually suffered even greater damage to that pride and was
cursed, discredited, and dismissed from Allah's presence.
In the following verse, Allah tells us that Satan's disobedience only
caused him to abase himself:
He [Allah] said: "Descend from it. It is not for you to be arrogant in
it. So get out! You are one of the abased." (Surat al-A`raf, 7:13)
Satan's greatest abasement is that he will live in Hell, where He will
be tormented forever, because he set his pride above all else.
Satan decided to guide people away from the true path, just as he himself
had deviated from it. For this reason, he uses all of his power to entice
people into sin. He encourages pride and conceit, just like his own, so
that people will end up harming themselves. Due to this attitude, arrogance,
self-love, failure to admit errors or defects, and regarding oneself as
superior and competent at all times are among the greatest potential dangers
facing people. These characteristics always direct people toward sin by
causing them to be disobedient, rebellious, ill-tempered, aggressive,
cynical, and arrogant. Allah tells us about this:
When he is told to heed Allah, he is seized by pride, which drives him
to wrongdoing. Hell will be enough for him! What an evil resting-place!
(Surat al-Baqara, 2:206)
One of the sins to which pride drives people is lying, for most of the
time people do not wish to admit certain truths. For example, a person
does not want to admit to making a mistake at work, because she does not
want others to consider her to be ignorant, clumsy, or somehow lower than
her coworkers. Or when she does not want to admit that she forgot to buy
something, she says instead: "I went, but there were none left."
Even though lying is a curse that makes people fall even lower, some
people refuse to understand this truth and so lie right away simply to
protect themselves at the given moment. Most of their lies are recognized,
and so they fall even lower in other people's esteem. In addition, these
people need to remember the "reward" that they will receive in the afterlife:
an even lower position.
In one verse, Allah warns us against this habit:
Do not follow your own desires and deviate from the truth. If you twist
or turn away, Allah is aware of what you do. (Surat an-Nisa', 4:135)
Sincere believers never place their own advantage above Allah's good
pleasure and their love of Him. Their love and devotion to Allah prevent
them from doing anything that displeases Him. Moreover, if people really
want honor and superiority, they should not copy the unbelievers' methods,
for as the Qur'an informs us, real superiority is achieved only by following
Allah and the Qur'an:
All might belongs to Allah, to His Messenger, and the believers. But
the hypocrites do not know this. (Surat al-Munafiqun, 63:8)
If anyone wants power, all power belongs to Allah. All good words rise
to Him, and He raises up all virtuous deeds. But people who plot evil
deeds will suffer a harsh punishment. The plotting of such people is profitless.
(Surah Fatir, 35:10)
Out of habit:
A significant number of people are habitual liars, having acquired this
habit from others while they were still children or teenagers. For example,
many young people lie about where they have been. Alternatively, when
people are asked why they somehow did not live up to the other person's
expectations, they might lie, sometimes without even thinking, in order
to escape the blame. If they were to think a little, they would see that
being honest with others would not put them at any disadvantage vis-à-vis
People also frequently lie when asked for their opinions. Instead of
expressing their real ideas, they prefer to say what the other person
wants to hear or to give an answer that will suit their personal interests.
They do so either out of fear or the desire to win that person's approval.
Giving an answer that suits their own interests is widespread among people
who are far from religion. They convince themselves that it is only natural
to look after their own interests by adopting a defensive mentality. In
such a society, this idea is regarded as extremely natural. Indeed, when
a believer who lives by the Qur'an's values insists upon observing justice
even at the expense of his own interests, unbelievers consider him to
be either naive or unsophisticated rather than an exemplar of superior
People may classify lies as harmless when they are told to protect their
own interests. For instance, when a friend asks for a loan, many people
who could provide the loan find ways to avoid doing so by claiming that
they are looking for a loan themselves or that business is going badly.
This tactic is used to block the other person's request from the outset.
Among people who are far from the Qur'an's morality, such behavior is
not considered immoral.
In addition, it is possible to encounter people who lie out of habit,
even if they have no definite aim in mind. Such lies are based mostly
on a person's having nothing to talk about or a desire to attract attention.
For example, when nobody is paying any attention to them, such people
may say that they did not sleep at all, even though they had a perfectly
good night's sleep. Or, they might say that they have not eaten all day,
instead of only a few hours, or that they have a terrible headache about
which they can do nothing, even though the headache is only minor. Even
though these lies might be seen as "minor" and "harmless," Allah has told
us that all lies, without exception, displease Him.
To mock or make other people angry:
One reason for lying is to annoy the person addressed or to show him
that he is not respected or valued. For example, when asked: "Where have
you been?" a person who is late for an appointment may tell a very obvious
lie to the person who has been kept waiting. Here, the basic aim is to
let the other person know that his having waited is not important, that
his wishes have no meaning, and to make him angry by suggesting that he
Lying in order to mock others is also a widespread form of immorality.
For instance, a person who wants to mock one of his friends might convince
him that a fictitious event really took place. Believing his lying friend's
words, he passes on the "news" to others and, when the truth comes out,
is regarded as credulous or stupid. This entertains people who enjoy lying
and mocking others. By mocking their friends' credulity and belief in
them, such liars consider themselves to be very cunning and intelligent.
In reality, however, Allah does not approve of this and the mocker eventually
is exposed as a manipulative person who is disliked. He has, therefore,
fallen into his own trap, for while trying to demean others he has only
In the following verse, Allah announces that He forbids lying and mocking
O you who believe! People should not ridicule others who may be better
than themselves, nor should any women ridicule other women who may be
better than themselves... (Surat al-Hujurat, 49:11)
While some people thoughtlessly mock others and lie to entertain themselves
for a few minutes, they are really engaging in unacceptable and immoral
behavior. When informed of this fact, people who do not adhere to the
Qur'an's morality may reply: "So what? We're just enjoying ourselves,"
thereby refusing to see mocking others and lying as bad characteristics.
That these two characteristics are so widespread and are almost habitual
to many people does not alter the fact that they violate Islamic morality
and that, consequently, such behavior is never permissible. In addition,
if such people would just once listen to their consciences and answer
honestly if they really want to live surrounded by people just like themselves,
they would see the truth. Nobody wants his own bad behavior to be visited
upon himself. And, if he is asked whether or not he wants it, he emphatically
To avoid carrying out a difficult task:
People often lie to avoid a difficult task or one that they simply do
not want to do. For example, when somebody asks them for help, instead
of admitting that they are too lazy or that they do not want to help,
they make such untruthful claims as: "I have a lot of work at the moment,"
"I have a terrible headache," or "I've got a bad back."
In contrast, sincere Muslims do not offer such lies and never refuse
any request for help or any job because of unwillingness or laziness.
Knowing that in the Hereafter they will have to account for each moment
of life in this world, sincere Muslims carry out even the most difficult
tasks with greater pleasure and zeal. Sometimes, they may really feel
tired or unwilling to do certain things. In such circumstances, they need
to exercise their willpower and perform these tasks to the best of their
ability, instead of lying. For example, if somebody seeks their help when
they are engaged in something that they enjoy, they should think of the
rewards in the Hereafter and hasten to provide whatever help they can.
Those who do not do so, but lie so that they can stay and enjoy the movie,
demonstrate their own weak morality. They neither heed their consciences
or performing a more useful task. While they may persuade the person seeking
help that they are not well and are not in a position to help, and thus
cannot sacrifice their own comfort, Allah sees and knows everything. People
forget tomorrow much of what they have done today, but Allah forgets nothing
and will ask everyone about their deeds and thoughts in the Hereafter.
Everything in the heavens and everything in the earth belongs to Allah.
Whether you divulge what is in yourselves or keep it hidden, Allah will
still call you to account for it. He forgives whoever He wills and He
punishes whoever He wills. Allah has power over all things. (Surat al-Baqara,
To avoid saying: "I don't know":
Some people, due to their high self-esteem and belief in their own superiority,
try to prove to those around them that they have no faults. They want
to show off their knowledge on every subject. For this reason, they will
usually provide an answer even if they know nothing about the subject
Admitting their lack of knowledge is difficult, and they just cannot
bring themselves to say: "I don't know. I have no information about that."
Most of the time they put themselves in an even more demeaning position,
because other people recognize these lies for what they are and know that
this lying comes from self-conceit.
In one verse, Allah mentions such behavior in clear terms:
You are people arguing about something of which you have no knowledge.
Why do you argue about something of which you have no knowledge? Allah
knows; you do not know. (Surah Al `Imran, 3:66)
Such behavior is the result of the "morality" of those people who do
not heed the Qur'an. In order to have themselves accepted, respected,
and listened to, they resort to methods that the Qur'an declares to be
immoral. This practice only engenders trouble, tension, and discomfort
in this world, and places their eternal life in great danger. Seeking
respect and success in this way is a great error and an act of great ignorance,
because the only way to achieve what they want in this world and the next
is to conform to the Qur'an's morality.
To exaggerate experienced or witnessed events:
Some people exaggerate events and describe things they have not seen
as though they had witnessed them. While some do so in order to entertain
those around them, others have made it a habit. Without even thinking
about why they are doing it, they describe every event differently from
the way it happened, add details, and exaggerate it.
For example, when a car injures somebody slightly, they describe it as
an accident that caused a major disaster. When they see a large ship,
they describe it as being three or four times as large as it really is.
Such exaggeration causes others to discount their words. When people want
to obtain opinions on any subject, they go only to those who provide accurate
Even if such exaggerations are meant to entertain people or as a joke,
such behavior is not correct. Those who make such jokes should tell the
audience right away, or even at the same time, that they were only telling
Our Prophet (saas) told his Companions not to tell lies, even if they
were only meant to be jokes:
"Woe be on one who speaks and lies in order to make people
laugh. Woe be on him [her]."4
"I make jokes, but I say only the truth."5
To do wrong and deceive others:
People who do not live out the Qur'an's morality may dislike or envy
another person-sometimes even a friend-for very petty reasons. As a result
of these illogical and self-generated feelings, they want to take their
revenge, to a greater or lesser degree, on such a person, even though
they might be friends.
For instance, when a liar is going somewhere with his friend, he might
not want to tell his friend that his clothing is unsuitable, for that
way all of the attention will be on him. In other words, the liar does
not want to tell the truth and make his friend look better.
Or perhaps when two friends are working on the same task, one does not
pass on useful information or even withholds important information on
the excuse that: "That's all there is." In this way, her friend's work
is slowed down so that she will look better and win the competition.
On the other hand, because the believers have great respect and affection
for one another, they are invariably helpful and supportive. In fact,
they want the better and finer things both for themselves and also for
their fellow believers. As a result, they never lie to one another, but
always offer help and support from the heart. They try to make their friends'
appearance as attractive as possible and do whatever they can to help
them in their work. This indicates the believers' sincerity and their
close relationship with each other.
In a verse, Allah tells us that:
... [Those who] do not find in their hearts any need for what they [their
brothers and sisters] have been given and prefer them to themselves, even
if they themselves are needy. It is the people who are safe-guarded from
the avarice of their own selves who are successful. (Surat al-Hashr, 59:9)
To show off:
One of the most common reasons for lying is to show off to one another.
As Allah tells us in the Qur'an, these people are very prone to boasting
and showing off:
Know that the life of this world is merely a game and a diversion, ostentation,
and a cause of boasting among yourselves, and trying to outdo one another
in wealth and children: like the plant-growth after rain that delights
the cultivators, but then it withers and you see it turning yellow, and
then it becomes broken stubble. In the Hereafter there is terrible punishment
but also forgiveness from Allah and His good pleasure. The life of this
world is nothing but the enjoyment of delusion. (Surat al-Hadid, 57:20)
You are obsessed by greed for more and more until you go down to your
graves... (Surat at-Takathur, 102:1-2)
When people who are so given to boasting think that they do not have
enough to boast about, they resort to lying right away by pointing to
things they do not really own. For example, in order to suggest that a
perfectly ordinary item is more valuable than it really is, they boast
that they paid quite a bit more for it than they actually did. They also
exaggerate their position at work by implying that they hold a higher
post, one with greater responsibility, than they actually do.
They do this in the mistaken belief that they will thereby convince others
that they possess the same material or moral characteristics as those
people who are respected. And so they present themselves as hardworking,
philanthropic, and talented people who care about everything and are ready
to take on any responsibility. In the Qur'an, Allah has this to say about
Those who exult in what they have done and love to be praised for what
they have not done should not suppose that they have escaped the punishment.
They will have a painful punishment. (Surah Al `Imran, 3:188)
They speak in an exaggerated manner about other people's interest in,
or affection for, them. For instance, they claim that their partners have
bought them presents, that their coworkers or bosses have taken a special
interest in them, and that they have received a salary increase because
no one else can do what they do. Young people often say that they are
well-known at school and that they are the most popular people in the
school or in their class. Some people lie by claiming that on their birthday
or a special occasion that their friends or relatives bought them very
expensive presents. All of these lies have the same goal: to show off
and to convince others that they are highly valued by those close to them.
In other words, they want those people who have not received such valuable
presents to envy them and covet their possessions. In fact, these are
all worldly values that have absolutely no benefit in the Hereafter. Even
though people receive the most valuable gifts in this world, their persistence
in such unacceptable behavior will cause them to be deprived of all of
their possessions in the afterlife.
A hadith concerning our Prophet (saas) informs us that a woman exhibited
behavior similar to that described above. In order to make someone else
unhappy and jealous, she claimed that her husband had done things that
he had not done and had bought her presents that he had not bought. When
our Prophet (saas) heard of this, he said:
"The one who creates a false impression of receiving what
one has not been given is like one who wears a garment of falsehood."6
There are countless examples of lies told by people who want to show
off to others. Many people exaggerate the truth about their house, car,
office, their children's successes, their holiday, and their origins.
Since they have made a habit of lying, they lie as a reflex in every conversation.
However, because their brains cannot keep track of all of their lies,
these change according to subject and place until they finally give themselves
away and thus betray and demean themselves.
Always seeking the approval of anyone other than Allah, they do their
best to present a likeable image of themselves to others. They believe
that they must promote themselves at all times-a belief that requires
a great deal of lying. They feel obliged to adapt everything, from their
taste in music to their status at work, to impress other people. But such
an attempt ultimately fails, with the result that their lies are exposed;
they demean themselves, and they live in a state of constant stress, disappointment,
and tension. As a result, they derive no pleasure from what they are saying
and find no beauty in it. In addition, since their lies cannot satisfy
everyone, they try to appeal to the others and attract their attention
as well. This resembles a vicious circle from which nothing emerges and
which prevents a sincere, comfortable, and tranquil life. In the Qur'an,
Allah tells us about those who take deities other than Himself in the
Allah has made a metaphor for them of a man owned by several partners
in dispute with one another and another man wholly owned by a single man.
Are they the same? Praise be to Allah! The fact is that most of them do
not know. (Surat az-Zumar, 39:29)
To ensure advantage and profit:
Many people commit sins and behave badly in their quest for profit. Such
immoral characteristics as disloyalty, selfishness, aggressiveness, jealousy,
hypocrisy, and slyness mostly result from a desire for personal gain.
One of the most important reasons why people lie is their ambition for
personal advantage and profit.
Especially in business, some people believe that lying is absolutely
necessary to make a profit. They present their goods as being more valuable
than their real worth by lying about the correct price, measure, and amount.
In the Qur'an, Allah tells those engaged in business to behave justly
Give just weight-do not skimp in the balance. (Surat ar-Rahman, 55:9)
In another verse, Allah reminds dishonest merchants about the Day of
Woe to those who defraud [when measuring]! Those who, when they take
a measure from people, exact full measure, but when they give them a measure
or weight, hand over less than is due. Do such people not realize that
they will be raised up on a Terrible Day, the Day mankind will stand before
the Lord of all the worlds? (Surat al-Mutaffifin, 83:1-6)
People who do not stand in awe of Allah, believe in the afterlife, and
doubt its existence and the accounting after death always regard worldly
benefits as being the most important and so can easily fall into sin.
They do things that may bring them the punishment of Hell just to secure
a momentary or minor gain.
But those who fear Allah out of their awe for Him and are aware that
He is watching and listening to them at all times, always remember that
they will have to account for every word and deed in the afterlife. They
do not lie, regardless of the consequences; rather, they rely on Allah,
and trust Him. Even if they suffer as a result, they know that Allah will
help them and ease their lot in unexpected ways. In one verse, Allah promises
to send ease after difficulties:
Allah does not demand from any self more than He has given it. Allah
will appoint, after difficulty, ease. (Surat at-Talaq, 65:7)
In this verse, Allah reveals the good news that He will aid those who
follow His words and that difficulties will definitely be followed by
ease. Those who try to lie their way out of such difficulties, and thus
embark upon the path of falsehood, will meet with far greater difficulties
and a harsh punishment in the afterlife.
Those who follow this path should worry about paying hospital charges
for an illness that Allah send to them because of the gains they earned
and preserved through indulging in lying and low morality. Or, they should
worry that everything they have obtained through lying and deceit will
be destroyed by a fire or some other natural catastrophe sent their way
by Allah. They should not forget that Allah may test people in this world
and direct them toward the Qur'an's morality by means of such tests.
As our Prophet (saas) has wisely said: "Falsehood reduces
provision."7 In other words, Allah will not bless
those who lie and strive for personal gain by cheating others. Rather,
He will prevent the comfortable use of what they have gained by sending
spiritual and material trials and tribulations.
For those who follow His commands, are patient in the face of difficulties,
and never deviate from truthfulness and honesty, Allah provides comfort,
beauty, and sustenance beyond their hopes, as stated in the following
... [T]hey should carry out the witnessing for Allah. This is admonishment
for all who believe in Allah and the Last Day. Whoever stands in awe of
Allah-He will give him a way out and provide for him from where he does
not expect. Whoever puts his trust in Allah-He will be enough for him.
Allah always achieves His aim. Allah has appointed a measure for all things.
(Surat at-Talaq, 65:2-3)
Whooever stands in awe of Allah-He will make matters easy for him. (Surat
To win an argument:
As Allah tells us, "more than anything else, man
is argumentative!" (Surat al-Kahf, 18:54). When a few people come
together, usually they compete in making claims about a particular subject,
put forward different ideas, and try to make each other accept these ideas.
In these arguments, the aim is usually not to learn the truth and reach
the best conclusion, but rather to win the argument by convincing others
of one's own ideas and ignoring anything that is wrong with them. Even
if one of the parties realizes that he is wrong and is thinking incorrectly,
he usually will continue arguing out of arrogance, even though his claims
bear no relation to the truth. At this point, most people resort to lying.
In order to come out on top, they will begin to talk with "certainty"
about an event of which they have no certain knowledge and which they
have not witnessed or experienced, produce obviously imaginary scenarios
to support their claims, or even resort to slander.
All of these methods are due to the person's arrogance and concern that
people might not see them as they wish to be seen. As stated above, arrogance
usually drives people into sin, whereas the best and most noble thing
for a person to do is to admit that he is wrong as soon as he realizes
it. This is the sign of superior morality, because a person who behaves
like this first and foremost accepts what his conscience tells him and
behaves in a way of which Allah approves while ignoring other people's
ideas and reproaches. Contrary to common belief, such people are valued
and exalted by people of intelligence and by Allah.
In the Qur'an, Allah advises us as follows:
[Believers are] those who, when they act indecently or wrong themselves,
remember Allah and ask forgiveness for their bad actions-and who can forgive
bad actions except Allah?-and do not knowingly persist in what they were
doing. (Surah Al `Imran, 3:135)
To deceive through "white lies:"
Perhaps you have heard people reply, when asked if they ever lie, that
they certainly do not lie, but that they see nothing wrong with telling
"white lies" when necessary.
People who do not follow the Qur'an's morality apply rules according
to their own opinion and those of the people around them, and in such
a way that their own interests are met in all matters. For example, they
admit that theft is sinful but say that it is not sinful if the thief
steals out of necessity. Some people who know that gambling is forbidden
go ahead and gamble anyway, but believe that it is acceptable because
they give their winnings to the poor. However, those who heed Allah and
guard against evil do nothing that displeases Him or that He has forbidden.
The same is true of lying. Those who try to call lying by another name
to soften its meaning may convince other people, but Allah has forbidden
people to lie, and that includes white lies.
The Qur'an does not accept any of the above rationales for white lies.
In addition, those who tell them shape them according to their own opinions
about what does and does not constitute a white lie. Of course, their
definitions are designed to suit their own advantage. One result of this
is that society begins to accept lying as normal, because it gradually
begins to count all lies as white lies.
For example, a merchant who tries to sell something to a female customer
plies her with false courtesy, tells her that she is beautiful when she
is not, that she is well dressed when she is not, and that she is talented
and intelligent when she really has no talent or intelligence at all.
A man who comes home late uses a variety of excuses to avoid annoying
his wife. He says that telling his wife the truth would only make her
angry, but that when he tells these white lies, he does not make her uncomfortable
and creates no trouble between them. People who tell such lies have no
love, respect, or devotion for the person to whom they are told. Furthermore,
it is obvious that such people are not honest or trustworthy.
In conclusion, all lying, no matter what it may be called, has been forbidden
by Allah, for it destroys trust and loyalty between people and causes
people to live insincere lives.
Promising something that the liar knows cannot be performed:
The failure to keep one's word is a common occurrence. Of course, when
circumstances change, people might be unable to keep their word even though
they very much want to do so and had made their promise in all sincerity.
However, Allah warns people against making a promise, while knowing that
it cannot be kept, to gain another person's fleeting attention or for
any other reason, as follows:
O you who believe! Why do you say that which you do not do? It is deeply
abhorrent to Allah that you should say that which you do not do. (Surat
Be true to Allah's contract when you have agreed to it, and do not break
your oaths once they are confirmed and you have made Allah your guarantee.
Allah knows what you do. (Surat an-Nahl, 16:91)
Fulfill your contracts. Contracts will be asked about. (Surat al-Isra',
Mehmed Zahid Kotku, one of the twentieth century's leading Islamic scholars,
said the following about making such false promises:
"Failure to keep one's word or promise or to carry out
a promised act is falsehood. If a person promises to do something and
then does not do it, he is considered a liar. If he makes a promise knowing
that he will never attempt to fulfill it, his falsehood is doubled. If
he wants to keep his promise, but for some legitimate reason is unable
to do so and apologizes, he might be forgiven by the other party. Therefore,
when people promise to do something, they should always say:'If Allah
As Kotku points out, making a promise that cannot be kept is falsehood.
On the Day of Judgment, every person will be responsible for each of his
or her words and acts. Although they may have forgotten such things, Allah
does not forget and, on the Day of Judgment, will confront all people
with everything that they did while in this world. Believers who are aware
of this truth do their best to behave according to the Qur'an's morality.
They do not say whatever comes into their heads. When making a promise,
they calculate whether or not they can really fulfill it. If there is
a possibility that they cannot, they state this openly, explain their
reasoning, and take steps to ensure that the person to whom they made
the promise will not be placed in a difficult position. When they believe
that they can fulfill their promise, and so say "if Allah wills," they
keep their word even if doing so harms their own interests. Allah informs
us of this particular characteristic of the believers, as follows:
It is not devoutness to turn your faces to the East or to the West. Rather,
those with true devoutness are those who believe in Allah and the Last
Day, the Angels, the Book, and the Prophets; and who, despite their love
for it, give away their wealth to their relatives, to orphans and the
very poor, to travelers and beggars, and to set slaves free; and who perform
prayer and give the alms; those who honor their contracts when they make
them, and are steadfast in poverty and illness and in battle. Those are
the people who are true. They are the people who guard against evil. (Surat
[Believers are] those who honor their trusts and their contracts. (Surat
Out of fear of other people:
People also lie when they are nervous about those around them. For example,
a child who breaks a vase lies because he is afraid of his mother. A secretary
who mixes up files in the office is afraid of her boss and lies to protect
herself. On the other hand, believers only fear Allah and think only about
whether they will or will not gain His good pleasure. As a result, they
tell the truth whatever the circumstances and put their faith in Allah.
When, for example, they break a valuable object, those who are nervous
about other people shy away from being called clumsy or careless. Since
they make the great error of setting other people's ideas about them above
Allah's approval, they base their decisions upon acquiring other people's
approval and so usually lie to cover up their mistakes.
In the Qur'an, Allah warns us that Satan wants people to fear each other
and so commands the believers to fear Him alone, as follows:
That was only Satan who intimidated his adherents. But do not fear them-fear
Me if you are believers. (Surah Al `Imran. 3:175)
Is Allah not enough for His servant? Yet they try to scare you with others
apart from Him. If Allah does not guide someone, he has no guide. (Surat
In another verse, Allah refers to the believers as those who "do not
fear the blame of any censurer" (Surat al-Ma'ida, 5:54). In all circumstances,
the believers rely on and trust Allah and behave according to His will,
not according to the opinions of other people.
Fearing other people and not doing what is right is a kind of idolatry,
for this involves regarding another person or creature as Allah's equal
or superior (Allah is surely beyond that), and thus, in effect, granting
this creature the status of a deity. Those who are nervous of others and
behave according to that person's wishes fall into the trap of idolatry.
The believers are aware of this truth and so worship only Allah. The Qur'an
relates the words of one believer, as follows:
Am I to take as deities instead of Him those whose intercession, if the
All-Merciful desires harm for me, will not help me at all and cannot save
me? In that case, I would clearly be misguided. (Surah Ya Sin, 36:23-24)
As we can see, nobody can harm anybody else or say even one word to another
person without Allah's permission. For this reason, fearing other people
and lying is idolatry, a sin Allah will not forgive (Surat an-Nisa', 4:48).
Given this, people who lie because they are nervous of others should repent
and take refuge in Allah, because they have sinned and fallen into idolatry.