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As I and in all probability all of you know, lie or Kezb is counted as a major sin or in other word it is considered as Kabaer (majors) sin. But the question which I am looking for its answer is that what the reason(s) is that Islam declares this act as a major act? In other word, what is its negative point(s) which made it as a major sin and is there any hadith about its reason?

Note: both Shia and Sunni perspective would be appreciated.

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عنْ أَبِي سُفْيَانَ ، قَالَ : قَالَ عَبْدُ اللَّهِ : قَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ : " عَلَيْكُمْ بِالصِّدْقِ ، فَإِنَّ الصِّدْقَ يَهْدِي إِلَى الْبِرِّ ، وَإِنَّ الْبِرَّ يَهْدِي إِلَى الْجَنَّةِ ، وَإِنَّ الرَّجُلَ لَيَصْدُقُ حَتَّى يُكْتَبَ عِنْدَ اللَّهِ صِدِّيقًا ، وَإِيَّاكُمْ وَالْكَذِبَ ، فَإِنَّ الْكَذِبَ يَهْدِي إِلَى الْفُجُورِ ، وَإِنَّ الْفُجُورَ يَهْدِي إِلَى النَّارِ ، وَإِنَّ الرَّجُلَ لَيَكْذِبُ حَتَّى يُكْتَبَ عِنْدَ اللَّهِ كَذَّابًا " We can understand from this hadeeth that being truthful and honest guides to righteousness which leads to heaven, and lying guides to immorality, and immorality leads to hell.

Back to your question. Why is lying is such a major sin and guides to immorality which leads to hell? I will try to explain by giving examples. Let’s say, someone is liar. He is a merchant, and lies about everything in such way that:

  • He lies about his goods to customers, he sells them as high quality while they are the lowest quality. The customers might get hurt, and his reputation will will be bad, his business would stop.
  • He lies to people in general, when they know truth, they won't trust him and probably have hate towards him.
  • He lies about Allah and his messenger, saying that Allah and the Prophet said this is halal and this is haram while the Prophet and Allah didn’t. He can mislead people making them do sins, and he himself carries their sins as well as his.

From all what I mentioned, lying caused serious harm to others and destruction to the liar, it doesn't bring but harm and evil. Lying can cause many more serious problems if you think about it. That's why lying is a major sin. To prevent all the terrible consequences of lying, you have to prevent lying.

However, lying is permitted in only 3 situations as mentioned here:

عن أسماء بنت يزيد قالت : قال رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم : "يا أيها الناس ما يحملكم أن تتابعوا على الكذب كتتابع الفراش في النار ، الكذب كله على ابن آدم حرام إلا في ثلاث خصال : رجل كذب على امرأته ليرضيها ، ورجل كذب في الحرب فإن الحرب خدعة ، ورجل كذب بين مسلمين ليصلح بينهما." رواه الترمذي

So lying is permitted only for:

  1. Complimenting your wife to make her happy.
  2. Lying to the enemy during war, as war is a trick.
  3. Lying to two quarrelling people to make up between them.

I hope that answers your question.

  • Yeah, that was a constructive response by presentation of good examples. Of course there is a same hadith based on Shia (as Imam Sadiq (a.s.) who said like what you mentioned as the last hadith. But totally your answer is profitable. Jazakallah KHaira. – اللهم صل علی محمد و آل محمد Oct 22 '15 at 7:01
  • but would you explain more about the last hadith that Who was asmaa' bint yazid? would you please edit your answer and write its more complete name? God Bless You. – اللهم صل علی محمد و آل محمد Oct 22 '15 at 7:04
  • Just to make sure I understand you correctly. You want me to say who is Asmaa' bin Yazid, right? – Abdel Rahman Shamel Oct 22 '15 at 7:32
  • I'm really sorry, but I don't get what you mean by "complete name"? – Abdel Rahman Shamel Oct 22 '15 at 8:14
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    Since I found a same name whose complete name is as following: اسماء بنت یزید بن سکن بن رافع بن امری القیس بن عبدالأشهل انصاری . / .Her another name is فُکیهه‌ / Besides seemingly she has a famous speech (lecturing) even from the view of The Prophet too. / So I wandering if she is that? This reference . / . And this Anyhow, God Bless You anyway for such a beneficent response. – اللهم صل علی محمد و آل محمد Oct 22 '15 at 8:46
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I understand Islam allows for lying in/at three areas/levels of life: Family, Politics, and Society as shown in the above answer.

But we should not forget that lying is the main tool/weapon of all kinds of deceivers.

If he lies in one area, he will do it an another and again and again...

How can you trust any liar?

Therefore lying is a major sin and should not be encouraged/permitted at all!

  • No 1, If the Prophet (PBUH), according to various ahadith, permitted "lying" in 3 situations, on what basis are you saying that it should not be encouraged/permitted at all? No 2, I don't see that you've provided an answer to the question asked (what the reason(s) is that Islam declares this act as a major act?). – Atata Feb 19 '16 at 13:26

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