اَلْحَمْدُ لِلّهِ بِجَمِیعِ مَحَامِدِه کُلِّهَا عَلَی جَمِیعِ نِعَمِهِ کُلِّهَا… اَلْحَمْدُ لِلّهِ مالِکِ الْمُلْکِ مُجْرِی الْفُلْکِ مُسَخِّرِ الرِّیاحِ فالِقِ الاْصْباحِ دَیّانِ الدّینِ رَبِّ الْعَالَمینَ اَلْحَمْدُ لِلّهِ عَلی حِلْمِهِ بَعْدَ عِلمِهِ وَالْحَمْدُ لِلّهِ عَلی عَفْوِهِ بَعْدَ قُدْرَتِهِ وَالْحَمْدُ لِلّهِ عَلی طُولِ اَناتِهِ فی غَضَبِهِ وَهُوَ قادِرٌ عَلی ما یُریدُ
Praise is to God with all his praises, for all his blessings. . . Praise is to God, the owner of the property, the operator of the orbit, the bender of the wind, the glory of the morning, the religion of the beliefs, lord of the worlds; praise is to God for his dream after his knowledge and thank God for forgiveness after his power, and praise be to God for his long patience in his wrath and he is capable to do what he wills
و نشهد أن لا اله الا الله وحده لا شریک له، و أَنَّ محمداً عبده و رسوله ارسله بالهدی و دین الحق لیظهره علی الدین کله و لو کره المشرکون اوصیکم عبادالله و نفسی بتقوی الله و اتباع امره و نهیه، و اخوفکم من عقابه
And we bear witness that there is no god but God alone, without partner, and that Muhammad is his servant and messenger, he sent him with guidance and the religion of truth, that he might proclaim it over all religion, even if the polytheists hated it.
Fortieth sign of the pious:
إِنْ صَمَتَ لَمْ يَغُمَّهُ صَمْتُهُ،
If he is silent, his silence does not make him sad,
“Silence” in the word means the prolongation of the pause. (al-Ain, volume 7, page 106) The words of the Imam Ali, peace upon him, mean that the pious do not grieve over their silence, because they choose silence where it is necessary and worthy, and speak where it deserves. It is obvious that silence causes sorrow and grief when a person has not said what he should have said in his place and has preferred to remain silent.
Imam Reza, peace upon him, says about the value and result of the silence:
مِنْ عَلَامَاتِ الْفِقْهِ الْحِلْمُ وَ الْعِلْمُ وَ الصَّمْتُ إِنَّ الصَّمْتَ بَابٌ مِنْ أَبْوَابِ الْحِكْمَةِ إِنَّ الصَّمْتَ يَكْسِبُ الْمَحَبَّةَ إِنَّهُ دَلِيلٌ عَلَى كُلِّ خَيْرٍ؛
From signs of jurisprudence are patience, knowledge, and silence. Indeed, silence is one of the chapters of wisdom; silence leads to gain love; it is true that silence is a guide to all goodness and virtue. (al-Kafi, volume 2, page 113)
A man referred the Messenger of God, peace and blessings of God are upon him, and offered: O Messenger of God! Give me an advice. The Prophet said: Keep your tongue. He said again: O Messenger of God! Give me an advice. The Messenger of God, may God bless him and grant him, said: Keep your tongue. He (for the third time) said: O Messenger of God! Give me an advice. The holy Prophet said:
احْفَظْ لِسَانَكَ وَيْحَكَ وَ هَلْ يَكُبُّ النَّاسَ عَلَى مَنَاخِرِهِمْ فِي النَّارِ إِلَّا حَصَائِدُ أَلْسِنَتِهِم؛
Keep your tongue. Woe to you! And does he throw people into the fire with their noses except the people whose tongues have reaped?! (That is, people often go to hell because of the sins they have committed with their tongues). (al-Kafi, volume 2, page 115)
Imam Sadiq, greetings upon him, says:
كَانَ الْمَسِيحُ يَقُولُ لَا تُكْثِرُوا الْكَلَامَ فِي غَيْرِ ذِكْرِ اللَّهِ فَإِنَّ الَّذِينَ يُكْثِرُونَ الْكَلَامَ فِي غَيْرِ ذِكْرِ اللَّهِ قَاسِيَةٌ قُلُوبُهُمْ وَ لَكِنْ لَا يَعْلَمُونَ؛
Christ, peace is upon him, said, “Do not speak much except for the remembrance of God. Indeed, those who speak much other than the remembrance of God, have hard hearts while they themselves do not know that.” (al-Kafi, volume 2, page 114)
The one who talks too much will be more likely to make mistakes and commit sins, and every sin will put a black spot on the white and light base of the heart, and eventually the human heart will become dark and black, causing cruelty to the heart. Imam Ali, peace is upon him addressed Aba Abdullah Al-Hussein, peace be upon him, and said:
مَنْ كَثُرَ كَلَامُهُ كَثُرَ خَطَؤُهُ وَ مَنْ كَثُرَ خَطَؤُهُ قَلَّ حَيَاؤُهُ وَ مَنْ قَلَّ حَيَاؤُهُ قَلَّ وَرَعُهُ وَ مَنْ قَلَّ وَرَعُهُ مَاتَ قَلْبُهُ وَ مَنْ مَاتَ قَلْبُهُ دَخَلَ النَّارَ؛
Whoever increases his words, will increase his mistakes, and whoever increases his errors, will decrease his modesty, and whoever decreases his modesty, will decrease his abstinence from sin, and whoever decreases his abstinence, will kill his heart, and whoever has a dead heart will enter the hell. (Tohaf al-Oghool, page 89)
Of course, silence is not a virtue everywhere and at any time, but in some cases, speaking becomes preferable or even religious obligation, and silence in this case will accompany the wrath and punishment of God. Where one of the assignments that God has obliged muslims to obey is being missed or, conversely, a sin is considered halal and typical, in spite of the conditions of enjoining the good and forbidding the evil, it is obligatory for a person to speak openly and prevent the deviation. Silence is valuable where there is no preference or rational or religious necessity. However, silence is worth more than talking.
Silence is the sea and saying is like a barley; the sea seeks you, do not seek the barley.
Do not neglect the implications of the sea; and God knows the best.
Imam Sadiq, peace upon him, says:
لَا يَزَالُ الْعَبْدُ الْمُؤْمِنُ يُكْتَبُ مُحْسِناً مَا دَامَ سَاكِتاً فَإِذَا تَكَلَّمَ كُتِبَ مُحْسِناً أَوْ مُسِيئاً؛
The believing servant (in the sight of the God) is always considered virtuous and honest, as long as he is silent; when he speaks, his virtuous or the sins will be recorded. (al-Kafi, volume 2, page 116)
The forty-first sign of the pious:
وَ إِنْ ضَحِكَ لَمْ يَعْلُ صَوْتُهُ ،
And if he laughs, his voice is not loud,
The pious are so serene and dignified that they observe the etiquette and ethics in laughing, because their pattern of life is the holy Prophet. There are writings about that Prophet that his laughter was a smile and rarely was a slow laugh, and laughter or a loud laugh was never heard from that noble man. And this method has been used by all the dear Imams, peace and regards are upon them. They write about Imam Reza, peace upon him, in the history:
لَا رَأَيْتُهُ يُقَهْقِهُ فِي ضَحِكِهِ قَطُّ بَلْ كَانَ ضَحِكُهُ التَّبَسُّمَ،
I never heard his loud laughter, but his laughter was a smile. (Oyoon Akhbar al-Reza, volume 2, page 184)
Imam Ali, peace upon him, said:
خَيْرُ الضَّحِكِ التَّبَسُّمُ؛
The best laughter is smile. (Oyoon al-Hekam va al-Mava’ez, page 239)
It might be obtained from the teachings of the Qur’an and the Ahl al-Bayt, peace upon them that the believer has a bright face but at the same time his heart is full of fear and hope. There are fear of God’s disobedience and the consequent misfortune, and hope for God’s guidance and forgiveness. He thinks and meditates more than he laughs, but these are all his personal states, what people see of him is not a gloomy and inattentive face. He is warm and full of love and joyful with the people, and in solitude he has many cries and prayers on both for fear of his deeds and the resurrection and the court of God’s justice, and for the joy of meeting the almighty God.