The reasons for the digression and the difficulties of the youth are many and varied. Man, during the phase of youths is to a large extent in the process of the development of the body, thought processes and the mind, because this is the phase of growth during which he undergoes rapid changes. In this stage it is of extreme importance that the tools of self-control are prepared for him coupled with wise leadership to steer him towards the straight path.
From amongst the important reasons for this retrogression are the following:
1) Idleness: Idleness is a malady which kills thought processes, the mind and the strength of the body, because the body is always in need of movement and work. Thus when the body is idle thoughts become dull and the mind weakens, body movements weaken and devilish insinuations and evil thoughts form on to the heart. Many times an exil intention is create as a result of this suppression which was a direct consequence of idleness. The cure for this problem is that the teenage should strive in the attaining of work which befits him like reading, business or writing which will then become a barrier between him and his idleness. It is necessary that he becomes a stable member of society, working in his society for himself and for others.
2) Alienation and aloofness between the youth and the elderly members of their families or between the youth and others: We see some elders witnessing deviation in their youth but they hesitate, are disconcerted, helpless to strengthen them and dependent from reforming them. The result of this is hatred is for these youth, estrangement from them and a dont-care attitude towards their condition, whether their condition is one of piety or corruption. Sometimes they pass judgement concerning all the youth which translates into a blank impression of the youth in general. This splits the community whereby the youth and their elders begin looking at one another with the eyes of contempt. This is amongst the greatest dangers that can encompass human society. The cure for this problem is that the youth and their elders should make an effort to eradicate this alienation between them and trust everyone because the society together with it’s youth and elders are like one body. When one part of it decays, it leads to the decay of the whole body. It is incumbent upon the elders that they give deep thought to their responsibility concerning the reformation of the youth and dispel this contagious despondency from their hearts, because Allah has power over everything. How may corrupt people did Allah not guide, after which they became beacons of guidance and callers towards reform? It is necessary for the youths to entertain respect, regard for the opinions and acceptance of the guidance of their seniors who experienced the realities of life which these youth have not. When the wisdom of the seniors will meet with the strength of the youth, the society will attain prosperity with the will of Allah.
3) Liason with deviated and corrupt people and befriending them. This has a great effect on the mind, the thinking and ways of the youth. For this reason Nabi sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam is reported to have said: “A person is on the Deen (Religion) of his companion, so each one of you should take care in the matter of who he befriends.” He sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam also said: “The similitude of an evil companion is like an ironsmith using an oven. Either you will burn your clothes in his company or you will experience an offensive odour.” (Hadith) The sure for this problem is that the teenager should choose for his companionship those who are good and intelligent go that he may benefit from their virtue, reformed ways and intelligence. He should weigh up their condition and reputation before befriending them. If they are people of character, virtue, correct Deen and good reputation, then befriend them. If they do not possess these qualities, then it is incumbent to distance oneself from them so that one is not deceived by sweet talk and beautiful outward appearances. This is deception and misguidance. This path is traversed by evil people to allure the simple-minded in order to increase their multitude and conseal their evil condition. A poet has said it most beautifully: Test men when you intend to befriend them, Scrutinize and study their affairs.
4) Reading of destructive periodicals, booklets and magazines which create doubt in the Deen of a person and in his beliefs. This draws a person towards the abrogation of virtuous character and lands him in Kufr (disbelief) and vice. This is especially true when the teenager does not possess deep Deeni education and acute thinking by means of which he can differentiate between truth and falsehood, benefit and harm The reading of these types of books totally confounds the because they imbibe a false pleasure in the minds and thinking of the youth without reservation. The cure for this problem is that he should keep away from these books and read other books which will plant in his heart the love of Allah and his Rasool sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam and the reality of Eemaan (Belief) and good deeds. No doubt his inner self will entice him greatly towards those books which he loved previously and make him feel discontent with other beneficial woks. This is similar to the position of that person who lights with his inner self to establish the obedience of Allah in his life, but his soul rebels and becomes involved in futility and lies. The most important of beneficial books is the book of Allah and those which the people of knowledge have written by way commentary with correct transmission. In the same way the Sunnah of the Messenger of Allah sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, then that which the people of knowledge have written by extracting from these two sources or by way of deep understanding.
5) The impression of some youth that Islam is a curtailment of freedom and a repression of strength. Thus they tum away from Islam regarding it as retrogression and a barrier between them and progress. The cure for this problem is that the veil of the reality of Islam be lifted from these youth who are ignorant of it’s reality because of their wrong nations, inadequate knowledge or both. Islam does not restrict freedom but it is a control and a correct chanelling for it, so much so that the freedom of one person does not clash with the freedom of the next person. General freedom leads to chaos and eruption. It is for this reason that the injunctions of Deen are called Hudood (limits). If the injunction is one of prohibition Allah says: “They are the limits imposed by Allah, do not approach them.” [2:187] If it is one of consent, Allah Ta’ala says, “These are the limits imposed by Allah, do not transgress them.” [2:229] This is the difference between restriction (which is the impression of some) and control and guidance which the most wise, the all-knowing Allah has decreed for his servants. There is no basis for this problem because systemisation is a reality in all domains and man by nature is submissive to this systematic reality. He is submissive to the pressure of hunger and thirst and to the system of his food and drink as far as quantity, quality and type is concerned so that he may safeguard his body and it’s health. He is in the same way submissive to the system of his society, holding on to the customs of his city in it’s dwellings, garb and modes of transport. If he does not subject himself to this, he will be considered as being abnormal and he will be treated the way extraordinary people are treated. Life is totally a submission to specified limits so that everything progresses according to it’s intended aim. This subjucation is for the order of society, eg. submission which is necessary for the reformation of society and the prevention of anarchy. In the same way submission to the system of the Sharee’ah entails that which is necessary for the reformation of the naion so how can some people be annoyed with it and think of it as being a restriction of freedom? Verily this is a great untruth and a baseless, evil presumption. Islam in the same way is not a suppression of capabilities. It is a wide sphere for all strengths. Islam calls towards reflection so that man contemplates and his mind and thoughts grow. Allah Ta’ala says: “Say O Muhammad, I advise you of one thing only, that you stand up in two’s and singlely and then reflect.” [34:46] and Allah says: “Say O Muhammad, see what is in the heavens and the earth.” [10:101] Islam does not confine itself to calling towards contemplation and deep thought but it denounces those who do not think, observe and contemplate. Allah Ta’ala says: “Have they not considered the dominion of the heavens and the earth, and what things Allah has created?” [7:185] Allah Ta’ala says: “Have they not pondered upon themselves? Allah did not create the heavens and the earth and that which is between them, except with truth.” [30:8] And Allah Ta’ala says: “And he who we give old age. We reverse him in creation (making him go back to weakness after strength), do you not ponder?” [36:68]
The order of observing and pondering opens up the power of the mind and thoughts, so how can some people say; that it restricts capabilities? Dreadful is the word they utter; they only speak a lie. Islam has legalized for it’s people all pleasures in which there is no harm for the individual either physically, mentally or spiritually. Islam has authorised the eating and drinking of all pure things: “O believers, eat of the good things from which we have provided you, and render thanks to Allah.” [2:172] Allah Ta’ala says: ”And eat and drink and do not waste. He does not love those who waste.” [7:31] Islam has legalised all clothing to the demands of wisdom and nature: “O Children of Adam! We have revealed unto you clothing to conceal your shame, and splendid countenance, but the clothing of piety, that is best.” [7:26] Allah Ta’ala says: “Say O Muhammed, who has forbidden the beautiful (gifts) of Allah which He has produced for His servants and the pure things (which He has produced) for sustenance? Say, they are in the life of this world for those who believe, and only for them on the Day of Judgement.” [7:32] He has authorised enjoyment of women by legitimate Nikaah (Marriage): Allah Ta’ala says: “Marry women of your choice, two, or three, or four but if you fear that you shall not be able to deal justly with them, then only one.” [4:3] In the domain of economics, Islam has not suppressed the capabilities of it’s people but legalized for them all business dealings which are just and emanate from mutual happiness. Allah says: “Allah has permitted trade and forbidden usury.” [2:276] And he says: “lt is he who has made the earth manageable for you, so traverse through its tracks and eat of the sustenance which He provides, and He is responsible for the resurrection.” [67:15] And he says, “And when the prayer is finished, then disperse through the land, and seek of the bounty of Allah.” [62:10] After all this, is the impression or saying of some people correct, that Islam suppresses capabilities?
Misgivings and evil thoughts keep recurring on a dead heart which contradicts Deen. It is for this reason that when it was said to Ibn Masud or Ibn-e-Abbas (RadiAllahu anhum) that the Jews say that they do not get evil thoughts in their prayers, i.e. they do not experience apprehensions, he replied, ”They have spoken the truth, what can Shaytaan do with an empty heart?”
If the heart is alive and there is even a bit of Eemaan (faith) in it, then Shaytaan attacks it. His attack is devoid of leniency and sluggishness. He throws in the heart such evil thoughts which are detrimental to Deen. It is most destructive if the servant accepts these evil thoughts until Shaytaan induces him to create doubts in his Lord, Deen and beliefs. If he finds in the heart any weakness and frustration, Shaytaan overwhelms that heart until he takes it out of the confines of Deen. However, if he finds in the heart strength and steadfastness, he devises a contemptible scheme to mislead the servant.
These evil thoughts that Shaytaan casts in the him will not harm a person if he practices the therapy mentioned by Rasulullah sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam concerning it: Ibn-e-Abbas (RadiAllahu anhuma) narrates than a person came to Nabi sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam and said: “I am having a certain feeling within myself which being a burning ember is more desirable to me than my uttering it.” Nabi sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said: “All praise are due to Allah who has rejected his scheme i.e. driven away Shaytaan’s evil thoughts.” (Hadith)
Some people from the Sahabah (companions) came and said, “O Messenger of Allah, we find within ourselves (such a feeling) which overwhelms each one of us from speaking about it i.e. he feels it imposing to speak about it.” Nabi sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam asked: “Do you also experience it?” The companions replied, “Yes.” Nabi sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam replied, “That is true faith (Eemaan).” The meaning of having true faith is that evil thoughts and your rejection of them does not harm your Eemaan even a bit but it is a proof that your Imaam is sincere and has not been affected by any loss.
Nabi sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam has said: “Shaytaan (the Devil) comes to one of you and says. Who has created this? Who has created this? until he says : Who has created your Lord? When he reaches this limit, then seek refuge in Allah and in his compassion.” (Hadith)
It is state in another Hadith regarding the same situation. “You should say: I believe in Allah and his messengers.” And in a similar Hadith that Abu Dawood has narrated, Nabi sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said: “Say Allah is one, Allah is independent, He does not give birth nor was he given birth to, there blow a little saliva towards the left thrice and seek refuge from the accursed Shaytaan.”
Once the Sahaaba (RadiAllahu anhum) described this ambition to Nabi sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam for which he prescribed the cure in four steps:
First: The termination of evil noughts by completely shunning and forgetting them until they do not exist and then occupying oneself away from these thoughts with balanced thinking.
Second: Seek refuge in Allah from these evil thoughts and from the accursed Shaytaan.
Third: He should say, I believe in Allah and his Messengers.
Fourth: He should say, Allah is one, Allah is independent, He does not give birth nor was he given birth to, there is none comparable to Him, spit to his left side thrice and say, “I seek refuge in Allah from the cursed Shaytaan.”
From those issues which keep recurring and leaves the youth bewildered is the issue of predestination. Belief in predestination is one of the pillars of Eemaan and Imaam is not complete without it. This belief entails the belief that Allah, who is pure, knows what is going to happen and what is predestined for the skies and earth, as Allah says: “Don’t you know that Allah knows all that is in the heaven and on the earth? Indeed, it is all in a record and it is easy for Allah.” [22:70]
Nabi sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam has prevented us from quarrelling and debating in the matter of predestination. Abu Hurairah (RadiAllahu-anhu) relates that RasullAllah sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam came to us while we were debating about predestination. Seeing this he became angry until his blessed face turned red with anger. Then he said: “Did I order you to do this? Is it for this that I was at to you? The nations before you were destroyed when they debated this issue. I take a firm resolution from you that you will not quarrell in this matter.” (Hadith)
Engrossing oneself and quarrelling in the matter of predestination lands a person in a maize from which he does not have the ability to emerge. The path of salvation is that you should aspire to do good and strive in the doing of good as you have been ordered because Allah, who is pure, has granted you intellect and understanding, and sent to you Messengers and revealed with them. Allah Ta’ala says, “So that mankind, after the coming of the Messengers, should have no proof against Allah for Allah is Exalted in Power and Wise.” [4:165]
When Nabi sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam informed his companions that there is no person except that his abode in Jannah (heaven) and Jahannam (hell) has been foreordained, they said, “O Messenger of Allah, should we not depend upon our book (predestinations) and leave the doing of good deeds.” Nabi sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam replied: “Do good deeds, everything is made easy for what is was created. Those who are from the fortunate people, the actions of fortunate people will be made easy for them, and those who are from the wretched people, for them the actions of the wretched will be made easy.” Then the Messenger of Allah sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam recited the verse: “He who gives in charity and fears (Allah), and in all sincerity testifies to good, We will indeed make smooth for him the path to ease, but he who is a greedy miser and thinks himself self-sufficient and disbelieves in good, We will indeed make his path to adversity easy.” [92:5-10]
Nabi sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam ordered them to do good deeds and did not permit them to depend upon their preordainment because those who are predestined to be from the people of Jannah will not be from amongst them except if they do the actions and deeds of the people of Jannah, and those who are predestined to be from the people of Hell will not be from amongst them except if they do their actions. Action is according to the ability of a person because he himself knows that Allah has given him a choice in the doing of action and predestined it for him. If he wishes, he can either do it or leave it.
If a man makes an intention to travel, then he will travel and if he intends halting, then he will do so. If sees a fire, he will flee from it and if he sees a thing which is beloved to him, he will go forward. Similarly with regards to obedience and sin, a person practices them by his own choice and leaves them by his own choice.
There are two objections according to some people regarding the issue of predestination:
Firstly: Man sees that he does something by his own choice and he leaves all action by his own choice without perceiving any compulsion upon the doing or leaving of an action, so how does this coincide with the belief that everything is with the decree and foreordainment of Allah? The answer to this is that if we contemplate the action and movement of man, we will fmd that it is the result of two things viz. intention i.e. the choice to do something, and ability. If these two things are not found, the action will not occur. Intention and ability are both the creation of Allah, who is Most Pure, because intention is the result of the strength of-the mind and ability is the result of the strength of the body. If Allah so wishes he can snatch away the mind of man and he would be left without any intention or snatch away his ability leaving action impossible for him. When man makes a firm intention to do an action and he executes it, it is our knowledge with conviction that Allah had intended and destined that action, otherwise his intention would have changed or he would have found a barrier between himself and ability to carry out that action. A Bedouin was asked, “How do you recognise Allah?” He replied, “By the breaking of firm intentions and the changing of resolutions.”
The second objection: which recurs according to some people in the matter of-predestination is that man will be punished for his sinful deeds. How can he be punished for it when it is predestined for him and it is not possible for him to escape from something which is predestined for him. How is he rewarded for his obedience when it is predestined for him and it is not possible for him to escape from something which is predestined for him? It is unjust that you make predestination an argument for disobedience while you do not make it an argument for obedience. The second answer is that Allah has negated this argument in the Qur’an and classified it as an ignorant statement. Thus Allah Ta’ala says, “Soon the idolaters will say, if Allah willed we would not have ascribed partners to Allah nor would our fathers have, nor would we have forbidden anything. In the same way their ancestors argued falsely, until they tasted our wrath. Say, have you any (certain) knowledge? If so, produce it before us. You follow nothing but presumption and you only lie.” [6: 148]
Allah Ta’ala has explained that these objectors of predestination, have in their ranks those who were before them, who falsified (the Messengers) the way these people falsify (the Prophets), and they remained firm upon this action of theirs until they toted Allah’s punishment. If their proof was correct, Allah would not have made the taste of His punishment. Then Allah ordered his Nabi to challenge them to prove the correctness of their beliefs and explain to them that they have no proof for this.
The third answer is that preordainment is a hidden secret. Nobody knows about it except Allah until it happens. How can a sinner have knowledge about the txt that Allah has predestined for him sin until he does it? Is it not possible that Allah had ordained for him obedience? So why does he not in place of going towards sin, go towards obedience and say Allah has definitely predestined for me that I obey him?
The fourth answer is that Allah has blessed man by what he has given him of intelligence and understanding, and revealed upon him books and sent to him messengers and outlined to him what is beneficial and what is non-beneficial and blessed him with intention and ability with which he has the power to traverse either path. So why does lis sinner choose the path of harm over the path of benefit?
If this sinner intended going on a journey to another place and he had two roads to choose from: one is easy and peaceful and the other difficult and frightful, he most definitely would traverse the easy, peaceful path and not the difficult, frightful path because of the argument that Allah had predestined it for him. If he traversed the path of difficulty and used the argument that Allah had predestined it for him, people would think of him as being naive and insane. In the same way are the paths of good and evil. Man will traverse the path of good and not deceive himself by traversing the path of evil on the pretext that Allah had predestined it for him. We see that every person has the ability to earn his livelihood. We see that he traverses every path in the gaining of his livelihood. He dos not sit in his house and leave earning, holding on to the excuse of predestination.
Otherwise, what is the difference between striving for the world and striving in the obedience of Allah? Why do you make divine foredainment a proof for yourself upon the leaving out of obedient and you do not make it a proof for the leaving out of worldly action? The clarity of an argument is in it’s place but desires make a person blind and deaf.
When these words have revolved around the problems of the youth, I would like to mention some Ahadith in which there is a mention of the youth. From amongst them are:
1. “Your Lord is pleased with that teenager who is free of youthful passion.” (Narrated by Ahmad)
2. “There are seven such persons for whom Allah will provide shade from his shade on that day who there will be no other shade except his. A just ruler, a youth who was nurtured in the obedience of Allah, a man whose heart is attached to the Masjid, two people who love each other only for the pleasure of Allah. They meet for the pleasure of Allah. A man who is enticed by a woman of status and beauty and he says, “I fear Allah.” A man who given charity so secretly that his left hand does not know what his right hand has given and a person who remembers Allah in seclusion and tears flow from his eyes (due to the fear of Allah).” (Narrated by Bukhaaree and Muslim)
3. “Hasan and Husain (RadiAllahu-anhuma) will both be the leaders of the youth of Jannah.” (Narrated by Tirmidhi)
4. “It will be said to the people of Jannah, for you is youth and you will never grow old.” (Narratted by Muslim)
5. “Never does a youngster honour an elderly person because of his old age but Allah appoints somebody who will honour him during his old age.” (Narrated by Tirmidhi with a weak chain of narrators).
6. Abu Bakr said to Zaid bin Habit while Umar bin Khattaab was beside him (RadiAllahu anhum): “You are a young, intelligently. We are not suspicious of you and you used to write the revelation for the Messenger of Allah sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam so pursue the Qur’an and gather it” (Narrated by Bukhaaree)
7. Nabi sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam came to a youngster while he was in the throes of death. Nabi sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam asked him, “In what condition do you find yourself?” He said, “I have hope in Allah, O Messenger of Allah and I fear for my sins.” Nabi sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said, “These two things (hope ad fear) do not gather in the heart of a servant at a moment like this, but Allah grants him what he hopes for and saves him from that which he fears.” (Narrated by Ibn-e-Majah)
8. Bara Bin ‘Aazib (RadiAllahu anhu) said concerning the battle of Hunain, “No, by Allah, Rasullaah sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam did not turn away, but even his young companions who were fatigued and ill equiped emerged to fight.” (Narrated by Bukhaaree)
9. Ibn-e-Mas’ood (RadiAllahu anhu) narrates, “We used to fight with Nabi sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam while we were young.” (Narrated by Ahmed)
10. Anas Bin Malik (RadiAllahu anhu) narrates: “There were seventy youth from among the Ansar, who were called Qurra (reciters), who used to remain in the masjid. When evening approached, they retreated to a corner in Medinah, where they learnt, taught each other and prayed. Their families were under the impression that they were in the Masjid and the people of the Masjid were under the impression that they were with their families, until the crack of dawn. They brought fresh water and gathered firewood which they presented at the room of Nabi sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam.” (Narrated by Ahmad). Wiih this they used to buy food for the Ashaabus Suffah (people of the platform). The people of the platform were those destitutes who migrated to Madinah. They did not have any family in Madinah so they sought refuge at a platform in the Masjid.
11. Alqamah who is one of the companions of Ibn Masood (RadiAllahu anhu) narrates, he says, “I was walking with Abdullah by Mina when he met Uthmaan (RadiAllahu anhu). Abdullah stood talking with Uthmaan (RadiAllahu anhu) when he said, “O Abu Abdir-Rahman, should we not marry you to a young girl so that she would remind you of some things which have passed during your era.” Abdullah said: “If you say that then surely Rasulullah sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam told us, “O youth. Whoever from amongst you has the means, should marry, because it is more effective in the safeguarding of the gaze and more chaste for the private parts. If one does not have the ability to do this, then he should fast because it is a shield for him (from sins).” (Narrated by Bukhaaree and Muslim).
12. In the tradition concerning Dajjaal reported from Nabi sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, “Dajjaal will call a person who is in the prime of his youth and strike him with a sword, slicing him into two pieces, like the striking of a target. Then Dajjaal will call the youth. The youth will respond, his face being radiant – laughing.” (Narrated by Muslim)
13. Malik Bin Huwairith (RadiAllahu anbu) narrates, “We came to Rasullah sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam while we were youngsters of similar age. We stayed by him for twenty days and nights. The Messenger of Allah sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam was merciful and gentle. When he guessed that we longed for our families into difficulty, he questioned us about what we had left behind, so we informed him. Then Nabi sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said, “Return to your families, live with them, teach them, invoke them,” and he mentioned a few other things. “Pray the way you see me performing the prayer. When the time of prayer approaches, then one of you should call out the call for prayer (Adhaan) and the eldest amongst you should lead the prayer.” (Narrated by Bukhaaree)
We ask Allah to grant us benefit from this treatise and praises are only for Allah who is the Lord of the Universe. May Allah shower his choicest blessings and peace upon our Nabi sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam and upon all his family and companions.]]>
Verily all praises are due to Allah. We praise and glorify him, we seek help from him, we ask of his forgiveness and we tum to him. We seek refuge in him from the evil within us and from our evil deeds. Whomsoever Allah guides there is no one to mislead him and whomsoever Allah misguides, there is no one to guide him. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allah, who is one, and he has no partner. I bear witness that Muhammad sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam is his servant and his messenger. May Allah bestow Durood (His choicest blessings) upon him and his noble family and companions and those who followed them with excellence.
It gives me great pleasure to present to my brothers a very serious problem not only in Islamic society but in every society, and that is the problem facing the youth in this age. The hearts of the youth are sicken with psychological problems which sometimes makes them uneasy with life and they spend their energies in trying to free themselves from those difficulties and removing that sorrow. The removal of the difficulties will will never take place except with Deen (Religion) and character in which there is the strengthening of society and the betterment of this world and the hereafter. With this (religion and character), goodness and blessings will descend and evil and calamities will end.
Countries do prosper except with the help of its citizens and religion does not gain strength except with its followers. When the followers of Islam will stand up for it, Allah will help them no matter how many enemies they have. Allah Ta’ala says:
“O believers, if you help Allah’s cause, he will help you and make your feet firm (against your enemies) and those who disbelieved, woe unto them and their actions are in vain.” [47:7,8]
If Deen (religion) cannot be strong except with it’s followers, then it is necessary for us, the followers of Islam and it’s flag-bearers, that we firstly stregthen ourselves so that we may become worthy of leadership and guidance. It is imperative that we learn from the book of Allah (The Qur’an) and the Sunnah of his Rasool (Messenger) sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam which will equip us for speech, action, guiding and inviting. This will enable us to carry the weapons of the guidance of Islam to all those who seek the truth and also to wield it against all those who seek falsehood.
Then it is neccesary for us to put into practice what we have learnt from the Qur’an and Sunnah, on the basis of Eemaan (faith), conviction and sincerity Our characteristic should not be one of speech only because if speech is not backed up by action, it’s effect will not extend beyond the speaker and this speech will have an opposite elect:
“O believers, why do you say that which you do not do. It is most hateful in the sight of Allah that you say that which you do not practice.” [61:2-3]
It is most appropriate for us that we start at the beginning and ponder over our youth and their thoughts and actions, so that we may increase those which are good and correct those who are incorrect because the youth of today are the men of tomorrow and they are the foundation on which a future nation will be built. It is for this reason that the text of the Sharee’ah (Islamic Law) has encouraged giving the youth due consideration and directing them to which is good and correct. They are the basis of the Ummah of which it’s future will be built and if their reformation is grounded upon the strong pillars of the Deen (Religion) and character, there will be a brilliant future for this Ummah, if Allah wills.
If we closely exam the the youth, it will be possible for us to conclude that the youth are generally of three types: Rightly guided youth, deviated or perverted youth and youth who are confused (between evil and good).
The first type
Rightly guided youth are: Youth who firmly believe in all the implications of this Kalima (the shahadatain). They termly believe in their Deen (Religion). Eemaan (Faith) is beloved to them and they are content and satisfied with their Eemaan. They consider aquiring Imaam as a profit and deprivation from it as a big loss.
Youth who worship Allah sincerely. They worship Allah alone who has no partner.
Youth who follow the Messenger of Allah, Muhammad sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam practically in his speech and action because they believe that he is the Messenger of Allah and the leader of all messengers.
Youth who establish salah (Prayer) perfectly to the best of their ability, because they believe in the benefit and the religious, worldly and social merit found in prayer and the dangerous consequences of neglecting salah for both the individual andd the nation.
Youth who give Zakah in full to those who are deserving of it, because they believe that Zakah fulfils the needs of Islam and it is one of the five Pillars of Islam.
Youth who fast during the month of Ramadaan. They stop themselves from their desires and cravings, whether it is summer or winter because they believe that actions are for the pleasure of Allah. Thus they give preference to that which pleases Allah over that which they desire.
Youth who perform the compulsory duty of Hajj (Pilgrimage) to the sacred house of Allah because they love Allah. Thus they love the house of Allah and they love going to the places of his mercy and forgiveness and collaborating with his Muslim brothers who come to these places.
Youth who believe in Allah who is their creator and the creator of the skies and the each, because they see from amongst the signs of Allah that which leaves no doubt even for a moment whatsoever in the existence and being of Allah. They see in this vast unique universe, in the form and system of the universe, that which clearly indicates towards the existence of it’s creator and His total power and complete wisdom, because it is not possible for this universe to come into existence on it’s own, nor is it possible for it to come into existence coincidentally. The reason for this is that the universe was non-existent before it was brought into existence, and that which is non-existent cannot bring anything into existence, because it itself is non-existent.
It is not possible that the universe camee into existence coincidentally because it has a unique well-arranged system, which does not change nor variate from the procedure predestined for it.
“You will never find a change in the system of Allah.” [33:62]
“You will never fmd any reversal in the system of Allah.” [35:43]
“You will not see in the creation of the most gracious any disparity, so turn your vision again. Do you see any rupture? Then turn your vision again, a second time, your vision will return to you dull an in a state of fatigue.” [67:3-4]
The fact that this universe has a unique, well-arranged system, prevents it’s existence being coincidental. That which is in existence coincidentally will also have a system which is coincidental, which is likely to change or be disturbed in a short period of time.
Youth who believe in the angels of Allah because Allah has given information regarding them (the angels) in his book the Qur’an and his Messenger sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam has given information regarding to in the Sunnah (the traditions). The Qur’an and Sunnah explain their qualities, their worship and their actions to which they rigidly stick to for the goodness of the creation. This clearly points to the existence of the angels.
Youth who believe in the Books of Allah. Allah revealed these books to his Messengers as a source of guidance for the creation towards the straight path. It is not possible for the mind of man to understand the intricacies of worship and social life except with the books of Allah.
Youth who believe in the prophets and Messengers of Allah whom Allah sent to his creation to call them towards good and enjoin them with good and prevent them from evil so that people do not have any proof against Allah after the sending of prophets. The very first Messenger was Nooh alayhis-salam and the last messenger was Muhammad sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam.
Youth who believe in the last day in which people will be resurrected after dying, so they may be compensed for their actions. Whoever does good equal to an atom, will reap it, and whoever does evil equal to an atom, will reap it. This is the cosequence of this world, otherwise what is the benefit of life and what is the wisdom of life if there is no day for the creation in which the doer of good will be compensated for his good, and the perpetrator of evil, punished for his evil?
Youth who believe in the predestination of good and evil. Thus they believe that everything is with the decree of Allah and his divine foreordainment. This is despite their belief in causes and their related effects and that for both good and evil there are means.
Youth who adhere to the advice of Allah, His messengers, His book, the leaders of the Muslims and the general masses. They interact with Muslims with frankness and openness – the way it is incumbent upon them. They neither mislead, deceive nor conceal anything.
Youth who call towards Allah with deep insight, in accordance to the manner Allah has laid down in his book.
“Call towards the path of your Sustainer with wisdom and sound advice and debate with them in a manner that is befitting.” [16:125]
Youth who enjoin good and forbid from evil because they believe that in this is the success of the nation.
“You are the best of nations, taken out for the guidance of mankind. You enjoin good and forbid from evil and you have full faith in Allah.” [3:110]
Youth who strive in the changing of evil in the way established by the Messenger of Allah sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam:
“Whomsoever from amongst you see an evil he should change it with his hand. If he does not have the power to do this, then he should change it with his tongue. If he does not have the ability to do even this, then he should change it with his heart (by scheming in the eradication of this evil).” (Hadith)
Youth who speak the truth and accept the truth, because truth leads to good and good leads to paradise. A person will continue being truthful and pursue the truth until Allah records him as being a truthful person.
Youth who love good for the general Muslims because they believe in the saying of Nabi sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam: “None from amongst you can be a true believer until he loves for his (Muslim) brother that which he loves for himself.” (Hadith)
A teenager who is cognizant of his responsiblity to Allah and his nation. He strives always for the goodness of his Deen (Religion), his nation and homeland, keeping far from egoism and far from giving consideration to his own good at the expense of the good of others.
A teenager who strives for the pleasure of Allah and with the help of Allah in the path of Allah. He strives with sincerity without pride or want of reputation. He strikes with the help of Allah without being conceited and without depending on his own might and power. He strives in the path of Allah for the upliftment of his Deen without exceeding the bounds and without laxity. He strives with his tongues, hand and wealth in the manner that the needs of Islam, and the Muslims demand of him.
Youth who have character and Deen in them, thus they are of refined character, religion, gentle, liberal, noble-minded. clean-hearted, steadfast, enduring and resolute. They do not waste any opportunity nor do they let compassion overcome intelligence and the need for reformation.
A teenager who is systematic. He works with wisdom and silence despite being firm and excellent in his work. He does not waste any opportunity but instead occupies himself in actions which are beneficial for him and his nation.
Together with this, this teenager safe-guards his Deen, character and conduct. Thus he is extremely distant from those qualities which contradict this, like kufr (disbelief), apostasy, inequity, disobedience, lowly character and evil mutual relations.
These types of youth are the pride of a nation and a symbol of it’s prosperity and Deen. These are the youth who will obtain the good of this world and the hereafter. They are the youth who we hope that Allah, with his grace, will use to rectify the corruption amongst the Muslims and illuminate the spiritual path of the seekers of truth.
The second type
The second type of teenager is the one who is corrupt in his beliefs, irresponsible in his conduct, himself misled, ingulfed in vice; he does not accept the truth from anyone nor does he refrain from falsehood and he is selfish in his conduct. He is a teenager who is stubborn. He does not yield to the truth nor does he renounce falsehood. He dos not care about his neglect of the rights of man nor the rights of Allah. He is a confused teenager bereft of impartiality in his thinking and in his behaviour. Likewise he lacks balance in all his affairs.
A teenager who is conceited with his own opinion as if truth flows from his tongue. He, in his opinion, is free from mishaps, while others are a source of mistakes and slip-ups as long as they contradict his option.
A teenager who has turned away from the straight path in his deen and the accepted norms of conduct. The evil of his conduct has been made alluring to him. Therefore he regards it as virtuous. Thus he is the greatest of losers in respect of his deeds. These are the ones whose efforts have been wasted in this life, while they presumed that they were doing good.
He is an evil omen upon himself and a misfortune for his society, one who is driving his nation towards the lowest stage. He is a barrier between his nation and their respect and munificence, a lethal influence, difficult to treat – except if Allah wishes. Allah has power over everything.
The third type
The third type of teenager is he who is confused and doubtful. He recognises the truth and is content with it. He lives in a guarded society except that the doors of evil have opened up for him from every direction. This has created doubt in his beliefs, deviation in his conduct, weakness in his action, a foray from known practices and an influx of diverse falsehood. Thus he is in eternal thought and inner search. Opposing this influx or movement (of falsehood) is uncertainty. He does not know whether the truth lies in the prevailing idealogies or in the way of his pious predecessors and his safeguarded society. He is thus in doubt – sometimes he accords preference to one side and sometimes the next according to the strength of the influx of these thoughts.
This type of teenager is passive in his life. He is in need of captivating strength which will guide him towards the enclosure of truth and the path of goodness. How easy will this not be Allah prepares for him a person who calls towards good, who is wise, knowledgeable and of good intentions?
These types of teenagers are found in abundance. They obtain a smattering of Islamic education but they acquire much more secular knowlege which conflicts with the basics of Deen either in reality or in their presumptions. Thus they are helpless between the 2 cultures. It is possible for them to gain liberation from this helplessness by establishing themselves upon Islamic education and acquiring this education from it’s original sources – the book of Allah (the Qur’an) and the Sunnah (traditions) of Muhammad sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam at the hands of devoted Ulema (learned men) – and this is not difficult for them.
After finishing Salatul ‘Ishaa, a Muslimah sit on her Salah mat to make Du’aa.
Once after she finished making du’aa to her Lord, her mobile rang.
She picked up saying : ”Assalamu ‘alaykum Wa Wahmatullahi Wa Barakatuhu.”
A voice of a young man replied : ”Wa’alaikum Assalam Wa Rahmatullah Wa Barakatuhu! Can I speak to (so and so) please?”
The Muslim girl said: ”Sorry brother, you have dialed the wrong number”…Then she hung up.
After few minutes, her mobile rang again.
She picked up, it was the young man who called her minutes ago.
He told her : ”I called again to apologize for disturbing you! You seems to be good girl! Can I know you better?”
The girl was shocked for few seconds but then she replied: ”Brother… Fear Allah! you suppose to be at Masjid praying salatul ‘Ishaa but here you are going after girls to flirt with them at night! Here you are disobeying your Lord instead of obeying HIM! Shame on you!!!”
After saying these words, she immediately hang up.
Few days later, he called her again: ”Assalamu ‘alaykum Wa Wahmatullahi Wa Barakatuhu sister, plz don’t hang up! I want to apologize again and inform me that I went back to pray all my 5 daily prayers at Masjid! All praises to Allah and thank you for waking me up from my neglectfulness! Plz, can I know the name of the one through whom Allah guided me? I really need someone like you in my life to strengthen my Iman and support me to stay on the right path! Plz help me sister, may Allah reward you for that!”
She didn’t reply and started to think :
”Should she accept to help him to stay on right path? Should she accept that he will be in touch with her from time to time to help him strengthen his Imaan?”
She heard a satanic voice whispering : ”He is good guy now! Why are you so worried about it?! Let him call you… you both have pure intention! He really needs you! If you refuse his suggestion, he will go astray and it will be your fault!! “
She was about to tell him her name but suddenly a little voice whispered : ”Allah is watching you”…
It was her conscience which woke her up from making a big mistake!
“Sorry brother!” she replied finally : ”If you are sincere in your repentance then you will find people who are better than me to help you! Even I need someone who helps me to stay at the right path more than you! At Masjid, you will surely find many righteous brothers who would be the good company which help you to get closer to Allah! Please, if you really fear your Lord now and afraid of HIS punishment, then do not call this number ever again!
Assalamu ‘alaykum Wa Wahmatullahi Wa Barakatuhu!”
Then she hang up and she went back to her Salah mat rising her hands to make this Duaa:
“O’ Allah, Turner of hearts, make my heart firm on your Deen and save me from the evil of Fitnah, Aameen!”]]>
You cannot escape it. The discussion about habits is all around you: Mom and Dad are constantly telling you to break your bad habits; your teachers are telling you to develop good habits; your friends are pressuring you to adopt their habits; and the television and media are influencing you to explore new and supposedly cool habits. “You will never be successful,” the constant refrain goes, “unless you drop your bad habits and develop some good habits.” In the end, it’s all up to you. You have to decide what your habits are going to be. Have you given this matter some thought?
If you are alive and breathing, you should constantly be engaged in an inner struggle to develop habits which draw you closer to Allah Most High. Success in this world is directly related to the strength of your relationship with Allah. The farther one is from Allah and the teachings of the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him), the less likely one is to achieve success in this world and, for sure, even less likely to achieve success in the hereafter. Is it not time for us to reflect upon Islamic teachings to discern the necessary habits of highly successful Muslim youth?
Here are at least seven habits indispensable for highly successful Muslim youth, derived entirely from the Qur’an and the teachings of the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him).
Being truthful is not always easy, especially when we make a mistake. We fret over whether or not to disclose exactly what happened. We sweat, we are afraid, we feel nervous and anxious. We are often afraid that if we tell the truth about what we have done or said, we will be in trouble with our parents or friends. What we forget is that whether we tell the truth or not, Allah Most High knows exactly what took place, even those things that were never manifest or visible to people around us. Despite how burdensome telling the truth might seem, all of us are aware of the feeling of relief we experience when we tell the truth, even if the consequence of telling the truth is punishment. Casting the telling of truth and the fate of the truthful in terms of profit and loss, Allah Most High tells us in the Qur’an:
[This is a day on which the truthful will profit from their truth: theirs are gardens, with rivers flowing beneath — their eternal Home: Allah well-pleased with them, and they with Allah. That is the great salvation, (the fulfillment of all desires).] (Al-Ma’idah 5:119)
So much is to be gained from being truthful as opposed to escaping punishment or blame because of not being truthful. Not being truthful, in fact, leads us down a slippery slope, guaranteeing that with one lie, more lies must be told. Being truthful is not an option for Muslims, but rather an obligation, because our goal in being truthful is Paradise. The beloved of Allah, Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him), said, as narrated by `Abdullah (may Allah be pleased with him),
Truthfulness leads to righteousness, and righteousness leads to Paradise. And a man keeps on telling the truth until he becomes a truthful person. Falsehood leads to al-fujur [wickedness, evil-doing], and al-fujur leads to the (Hell) Fire, and a man may keep on telling lies till he is witten before Allah, a liar.” (Sahih Bukhari, Book #73, Hadith #116)
Ultimate success is therefore achieved by living one’s entire life — the youthful years, the adult years, and the elderly years — being truthful.
Who do you rely on? Of course, Allah. He is indeed the Most Trustworthy. But among humans, who do you rely on? Who can you trust to come through for you all the time? Do people rely on you? Are you considered trustworthy?Moving ahead in life, achieving ultimate success, requires that people consider you trustworthy and reliable. Being trustworthy should not be an arbitrary activity but rather a habit so that you can be relied upon in all instances, big or small, convenient or inconvenient, easy or difficult.
In colloquial terms, we often hear “I’ve got your back,” implying, in the most literal sense, that people cannot see what is behind them so they need to rely on their friends to cover that angle, just in case a threat occurs from the back. Just imagine what it would be like if a friend were climbing a tree and was heading out onto a very thin branch to get a kite that got stuck there. She asks you if you “have her back.” In this instance, she is relying on you entirely to hold on to her in case the branch breaks. There is no room for joking around or for being distracted: your friend is trusting you with her life.
When we say Allah is the Most Trustworthy, we are coming to terms with the fact that Allah Most High will never let us down, will never leave our side. He, Most High, says about someone who willingly accepts Islam,
[Let there be no compulsion in religion: Truth stands out clear from error: whoever rejects evil and believes in Allah hath grasped the most trustworthy hand-hold, that never breaks. And Allah Heareth and Knoweth all things.] (Al-Baqarah 2:256)
Indeed, the prophets of Allah were all trustworthy people and Allah attested to the trustworthiness of those who were doubted by their communities. Prophet Hud, appealing to his community, declared to them,
[I but fulfill towards you the duties of my Lord's mission: I am to you a sincere and trustworthy adviser.] (Al-A`raf 7:68)
Practice daily developing the habit of being trustworthy. Accept responsibility and then fulfill it. When others trust you, do not betray their trust.
You can read in the beautiful biography of our Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) how people used to entrust him with their valuables, knowing that upon their return they would find their valuables safe and unharmed. His personal and business practices were commendable to the degree that he was known for it in his community, even before he became aware that he was the Prophet of Allah, literally one who is most truthful and trustworthy.
Perhaps the most difficult challenge while navigating adolescence is to restrain oneself from falling victim to one’s desires — especially one’s lower desires.
Our success in life depends to a great extent on how well we are able to restrain ourselves and to be moderate in what is permissible, as well as how capable we are of distancing ourselves from what is impermissible.
Why is self-restraint so critical? Satan’s goal is to make you a slave of your desires to the extent that you eat until you are actually uncomfortable; that you consume without restraint beverages made of caffeine, sugar, and artificial flavors; that you find yourself longing for sleep more than prayer; and that you yearn to satisfy your sexual desires. Developing self-restraint as a habit entails making self-restraint your second nature — something which is done almost without thought, without too much effort. We are reminded by Allah Most High,
[And no one will be granted such goodness except those who exercise patience and self-restraint, — none but persons of the greatest good fortune.] (Fussilat 41:5)
In seeking to be highly successful Muslim youth, that is, youth deserving of the greatest fortune, it is imperative that you develop self-restraint.
An interesting parallel is that, throughout his Qur’an translation, the late Abdullah Yusuf Ali translates taqwa as self-restraint. While taqwa is most commonly translated as “God-consciousness,” one realizes without much effort that the height of self-restraint is full and complete understanding that one is indeed conscious of one’s duty to one’s Lord. How awesome will it be if you can look back at your life and say to yourself, all praise is due to Allah that I did not succumb to my lower desires and instead exercised self-restraint consistently!
Look around your room. How many unfinished projects do you have? When you work on homework, are you likely to rush through the assignment just so you can be done with it or are you more likely to take your time, to check your work, and most importantly, to be thorough?
Often teachers will grade a report based on how well and to what extent the student covered the topic at hand. Being thorough is not a habit that is developed overnight. The opposite of being thorough is being incomplete, being rushed, and working in haste without any regard for accuracy or quality. The most perfect is Allah Most High, Who perfected creation, Who perfected our religion, and Who guided His Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) to be the most perfect among humans in behavior and in character.
We read in the Muwatta of Imam Malik “Yahya related to me from Malik that he had heard that the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, ‘I was sent to perfect good character’” (Book #47, Hadith #47.1.8).
To be thorough stems from a desire to be perfect to the extent that this is humanly possible. Seeking perfection in our actions and speech from an early age helps us to develop a keen eye, not only for thoroughness in our own life, but also for thoroughness in the lives of those around us. Being thorough in prayer, for example, teaches us to be patient and to concentrate upon the words we are reciting and the different positions of the prayer.
One thousand ideas go through your head the moment you stand up for prayer. Is that you? Really? What do you make of those ideas? Do you process them? What about when you are sitting in class? Do you find your mind wandering, daydreaming, and unable to focus on the lecture at hand? Are you likely to use any excuse whatsoever to leave what you are doing?
Developing the habit of being focused ensures that you are awake, alert, and totally motivated to work on and complete the task at hand, whatever it may be. Being distracted early on in childhood by video games, fast-paced imagery, and constantly changing scenes on television shows contributes to an inability to concentrate, to focus. Among the best ways to develop focus is to practice praying with deep concentration to the extent that you are almost unaware of your surroundings. Allah Most High tells us in the Qur’an that the believers are
[those who humble themselves in their prayers] (Al-Mu’minun 23:2)
The humility referred to here results from total focus and concentration on the fact that one is in the presence of Allah, standing before Him, Most High. Do your best to develop focus, no matter what activity you are engaged in — whether in prayer, in academics, in athletics, or some other pastime.
Stop saying over and over again that you are late because of “Muslim standard time,” or the “standard time” of your particular ethnicity. The last thing we should attribute to Islam is the notion that its teachings somehow make us late, slow, slugging, and anything but punctual. What a sad state of affairs, indeed, that we attribute our own weaknesses to our religion or ethnicity!
Highly successful individuals, be they Muslim or not, understand and appreciate the value of not only their time but the time of everyone else with whom they interact. Keeping people waiting for hours on end is neither something to be proud of nor a habit that has a place in the mindset of a person who tries to be successful.
One of the central pillars of Islam is prayer, and Allah and the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) have given us clear reminders that we are to establish prayers at their due times.
When `Abdullah (may Allah be pleased with him) asked “which deed is the dearest to Allah?” the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) replied, “To offer the prayers at their early stated fixed times” (Sahih Bukhari, Book #10, Hadith #505).
If indeed your day is to be considered successful, you must have prayed all the obligatory prayers at their established times and as many voluntary prayers as possible. If your day is planned around the times of prayer, you should not pray exactly at the time when you are to pray but then come late to all other appointments. Being punctual is a habit which, when perfected, demonstrates to others the tremendous value that Islam places on time — not only ours but that of everyone else with whom we interact.
Apart from all the habits listed above, perhaps the one that is sure to help you become a highly successful Muslim youth is that of being consistent. One cannot be truthful one day and a liar the next; one cannot be trustworthy in one instance and totally unreliable in the next; and so on for each of the other habits. A Muslim understands from an early age that it is easier to do something once or whenever we feel like it but much harder to do something regularly and consistently.
Indeed, the Mother of the Believers `A’ishah (may Allah be pleased with her) narrates that “the most beloved action to Allah’s Apostle was that which is done continuously and regularly” (Sahih Bukhari, Book #76, Hadith #469).
Regular and consist actions show that a person has thought about it, has intended to do it, has planned to do it, and therefore does it.
We urge you to be as consistent as possible, especially in those areas of your life which need constant improvement, such as your prayers, your fasting, your manners, your studying habits, etc. Do not say, I am going to pray all day every day, or fast voluntarily all of the days of every month, or study all night every night, because such actions cannot be humanly sustained over a long period of time. Say on the other hand, I am going to be sure to read at least one part of the Qur’an every day, or I will strive to help my parents with at least one household chore every day, or I will try to study at least one new item every week so that I can be ahead of the lesson plan.
Finally, Muslims aspire to develop all of these habits because, in doing so, we draw nearer to Allah Most High. If you are intent on being a highly successful Muslim youth, then you owe it to yourself to reflect upon your own life and see how many of these habits are already a part of who you are and how many you need to further develop or acquire.
We end with a reminder that developing these habits will help you to emulate the life of our beloved Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him). His message and his life are summarized well in a narration of `Abdullah ibn `Abbas:
Abu Sufyan told me that Heraclius said to him, “When I enquired of you what he (Muhammad) ordered you, you replied that he ordered you to establish the prayer, to speak the truth, to be chaste, to keep promises, and to pay back trusts.” Then Heraclius added, “These are really the qualities of a prophet.” (Sahih Al-Bukhari, Book #48, Hadith #846)
Strive to develop the seven habits listed above and many others from the Islamic teachings so that you will be among the highly successful Muslim youth.
Praise be to Allaah.
The relationship that develops between a man and a non-mahram woman, which people call “love” is a combination of haraam things that transgress shar’i and moral limits.
No wise person will doubt that this relationship is haraam, because it involves a man being alone with a non-mahram woman, looking at her, touching her, kissing, and speaking words filled with love and admiration, which provokes desire.
This relationship may lead to things that are more serious than that, as is happening nowadays.
We have mentioned a number of these haraam things in the answer to question no. 84089.
Studies have shown that most of the marriages that are based on prior love between a man and woman fail, whereas most marriages that are not based on haraam relationships, which people call “traditional marriages”, succeed.
In a field study done by a French sociologist, the conclusion was:
Marriage is more likely to succeed when the two parties did not fall in love before marriage.
In another study of 1500 families, undertaken by Professor Isma’eel ‘Abd al-Baari, the conclusion was that more than 75% of love marriages ended in divorce, whilst the rate among traditional marriages – those which were not based on prior love – was less than 5%.
We can mention the most important causes of this outcome:
1- Emotion blinds one to seeing faults and dealing with them, as it is said: “Love is blind”. One or both parties may have faults that make them unsuitable for the other, but those faults only become apparent after marriage.
2- The lovers may think that life is an unending journey of love, so we see that they only speak of love and dreams, etc. They never speak about the problems of life and how to deal with them. This notion is destroyed after marriage, when they are confronted with the problems and responsibilities of life.
3- The lovers are not used to debate and discussion, rather they are used to sacrifice and compromise in order to please the other party. Often they have arguments because each party wants to compromise and please the other. Then the opposite happens after marriage, and their arguments lead to a problem, as each one is used to the other agreeing with him or her, without any argument.
4- The image that each lover has of the other is not a true image, because each party is being kind and gentle and trying to please the other. This is the image that each is trying to present to the other during the so-called “love” phase, but no one can carry on doing that throughout his or her life, so the true image appears after marriage, and leads to problems.
5- The period of love is usually based on dreams and exaggerations that do not correspond with the reality that appears after marriage. The lover may think that he is going to bring her a piece of the moon, and he will never be happy unless she is the happiest person in the world, and so on.
But in return, she is going to live with him in one room and on the ground, and she has no requests or demands so long as she has won him, and that is sufficient for her. As one of them said, “A small nest is sufficient for us” and “A small morsel is sufficient for us” and “I will be content if you give me a piece of cheese and an olive”! This is exaggerated emotional talk, and both parties quickly forget it after marriage, and the woman complains about her husband’s miserliness, and his failure to meet her needs. Then the husband begins to complain about having too many demands and too many expenses.
For these reasons and others, we are not surprised when each party says after marriage that they were deceived and that they rushed into it. The man regrets not marrying So and so who was suggested to him by his parents, and the woman regrets not marrying So and so whom her parents approved of, but in fact they rejected him because of her wishes. So the result is this very high rate of divorce for marriages which people thought would be examples of the happiest marriages in the world!
The reasons mentioned above are real, and have happened in real life, but we should not ignore the real reason for the failure of these marriages, which are based on disobedience to Allaah. Islam can never approve of these sinful relationships, even if the aim is marriage. Therefore they cannot escape the just divine punishment, as Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):
“But whosoever turns away from My Reminder (i.e. neither believes in this Qur’aan nor acts on its teachings) verily, for him is a life of hardship” [Ta-Ha 20:124]
A hard and difficult life is the result of disobeying Allaah and turning away from His Revelation.
And Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):
“And if the people of the towns had believed and had the Taqwa (piety), certainly, We should have opened for them blessings from the heaven and the earth” [al-A’raaf 7:96]
Blessings from Allaah are a reward for faith and piety, but if there is no faith or piety, or only a little thereof, the blessing will be reduced or even non-existent.
And Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):
“Whoever works righteousness — whether male or female — while he (or she) is a true believer (of Islamic Monotheism) verily, to him We will give a good life (in this world with respect, contentment and lawful provision), and We shall pay them certainly a reward in proportion to the best of what they used to do (i.e. Paradise in the Hereafter)” [al-Nahl 16:97]
A good life is the fruit of faith and righteous deeds.
Allaah indeed spoke the truth when He said (interpretation of the meaning):
“Is it then he who laid the foundation of his building on piety to Allaah and His Good Pleasure better, or he who laid the foundation of his building on the brink of an undetermined precipice ready to crumble down, so that it crumbled to pieces with him into the fire of Hell. And Allaah guides not the people who are the Zaalimoon (wrongdoers)” [al-Tawbah 9:109]
The one whose marriage is based on this haraam foundation must hasten to repent and seek forgiveness and seek a righteous life that is based on faith, piety and righteous deeds.
Please also see the answer to question no. 23420 for more information.
May Allaah help us all to do that which He loves and which pleases Him.
And Allaah knows best.
بسم اللّٰہ الرحمٰن الرحیم
السلامُ علیکم و رحمۃ اللہ و برکاتہ
Whew! Summer is finally here and school is out for a whole two and a half months. No more books and backpacks, no more tests and tensions….its time to relax and enjoy!
Surely, you worked hard during the year and you deserve a break. Surely, you want to unwind and enjoy yourself. That matter is understandable. Islam certainly allows for rest after hard work but under certain regulations.
Hanzalah bin Aamir once complained to the Prophet صل اللہ عليه و سلم that some of his time is intermingled with playing with his children and family. The Prophet صل اللہ عليه و سلم answered him, “But there should be a time for this and a time for serious deeds.” (Al-Bukhaaree and Muslim)
But the question is…. to what extent should you go in spending your summer vacation? What is the essence of vacation?
Does it mean mere pastime, attending parties, and hanging out with your friends without direction or purpose?
Does it mean twiddling your thumbs, idling away the hours? Or watching satellite channels and playing endless video games? Or letting the gaze wander free?
And what are some of the positive things in which this summer can be spent?
These are questions that every conscious Muslim who is concerned about his free time, his Aakhirah and the welfare of the youth should ask himself.
Now that summer is here and they ‘take it all off’, what are you going to do?
Are you going to let your gaze wander indiscriminately, looking at anything and everything the eyes can behold? Or are you going to submit to the command of the Lord of the worlds and lower your gaze and earn Jannah instead?
“Tell the believing men to lower their gaze (from looking at forbidden things), and protect their private parts (from illegal sexual acts). That is purer for them. Verily, Allaah is All-Aware of what they do. And tell the believing women to lower their gaze (from looking at forbidden things), and protect their private parts (from illegal sexual acts) and not to show off their adornment except only that which is apparent….” [An-Nur: 30-31]
Don’t go to the beach or other places such as public swimming pools at a time you know when it will be difficult for you to lower your gaze. Maybe you can go there at night. Or maybe you don’t have to go there at all. Instead, have a pool party at one of your friends house (no mixing of genders, of course!)
Are you going to stay up late at night and waste it in idle talk, watching movies or TV?
(And by the way, not very many shows that are on at that hour can be called ‘halaal’).
Did you know that the Prophet صل اللہ عليه و سلم disliked staying up after Ishaa prayer unless it was for a valid reason?
The Prophet صل اللہ عليه و سلم said: “Staying up late is tiring and burdensome.” (Daarimi, Tabaraani).
And when Aa’ishah (radiyAllaahu ‘anha) heard ‘Urwah talking after the ‘Ishaa’ prayer she remarked: “What is this talk after dark? I have never seen the Prophet صل اللہ عليه و سلم sleeping before this prayer or talking after it. He was either praying and gaining (reward) or sleeping and saved (from evil)” (Abdur-Razzaaq).
Allaah has created the night for us to rest and the day to carry about our lives and earn our living.
“And out of His mercy He made for you the night and day that you may rest therein and [by day] seek from His bounty and [that] perhaps you will be grateful.” (Al-Qasas: 73).
By staying up late at night, not only does that endanger our Fajr prayer, but we tend to sleep late into the day and we turn the natural order of things set by Allaah upside down. We also lose the ‘barakah’ in our time.
The Prophet صل اللہ عليه و سلم said, ” Rise early to earn your living and do your affairs, for it brings about blessing and success.” [at-Tabarani]
Fatima, the Prophet صل اللہ عليه و سلم ‘s daughter, said that when he saw her still lying in bed one morning, he صل اللہ عليه و سلمtold her, “My daughter, get up and witness your Lord’s bounty, and do not be among the indifferent; Allah distributes daily bread between the break of dawn and sunrise.” [al-Baihaqi]
As for ‘killing’ time, since when is time an ‘enemy’ that you should strive to kill?!!
Time is your breath….your lifetime and the moments of your life which you could fill with thousands and millions of hasanaat. It is enough for you to say Subhaan Allaah wa bi hamdihi (Glory and praise be to Allaah) once, and a palm tree will be planted for you in Jannah. So how many gardens have you planted? And how many hasanaat have you gained?
The Prophet صل اللہ عليه و سلم said: “Make the most of five things before five others come: your life before your death, your health before your sickness, your spare time before your work, your youth before your old age and your wealth before your poverty.” (al-Haakim- Saheeh ).
Don’t waste your time loitering in the malls, playing video games or sitting at the computer for hours on end.
Remember that these hours gone will never come back. And we will have to give account of this time lost when we all stand in front of Allaah, the Lord of the Worlds.
The Prophet صل اللہ عليه و سلم said, “The feet of the son of Adam shall not move on the Day of Resurrection until he is asked of five things: His life as to how he spent it, his youth as how he used it, his knowledge as to what he did with it and his wealth as to where he got and how he spent it.” (At-Tirmidhee-hasan saheeh)
Are you going to become a couch potato, watching TV or lazing around for the rest of the summer? Did you know that laziness is something the Prophet صل اللہ عليه و سلم used to seek refuge with Allaah from in his du’aa’s?
“My Lord, I seek refuge in You from laziness and senility.” (al-Tirmidhi–saheeh by al-Albaani)
Hey, who are your ‘friends’ anyway? What are your gatherings like?
Make sure you have good company. Take a close look at your friends and ask yourself, what kind of friends do I have? Will any one of them enter my grave with me? Do they encourage me to do good or do they keep me away from the remembrance of the Almighty? Which of them will come to my rescue on the Day of Judgment?
“Friends on that Day will be foes; one to another except Al-Muttaqoon (the pious)” [al-Zukhruf 43:67]
When you get together with your friends, what do you do? What do you talk about?
The Prophet صل اللہ عليه و سلم said, “Any people who sit in a gathering during which they do not mention the name of Allaah nor exalt the mention of His Prophet صل اللہ عليه و سلم will regret it, then it is up to Allaah to punish them for it or forgive them.” (Ahmad).
Do something positive this summer and try your best to utilize your time wisely.
The Prophet صل اللہ عليه و سلم said, “I do hate to see a man doing nothing for this world or the Hereafter..” [at-Tabaraani]
1. Arrange your priorities
2. Fear Allah your Lord wherever you go.
3. Now that you have time, make sure to go to the masjid five times a day and pray in Jama’ah.
4. Sleep early and get up early, for early hours always yield great blessings.
5. Keep to friends who are righteous, those that can help you in good and prevent you from evil and vice versa.
6. Spend quality time with parents, brothers and sisters and family.
7. Do a lot of “Istighfaar” as it opens the doors to goodness and makes difficult matters easy.
8. Take time out daily to recite and memorize the Qur’an and Hadeeth.
9. Attend seminars and other classes of Islaamic knowledge.
10. Employ your energies within the limits of what Islaam permits, such as healthy sports.
11. Join some kind of classes that are offered this time of the year, such as cooking or sewing for the sisters or gardening, woodwork etc for the brothers.
12. Beware of the tricks of the Shaytaan that would take you away from remembering Allaah.
I am NOT SAYING that you should not enjoy yourself or have time to relax and have fun. By all means! But DO make sure that these means are within the limits set by Allaah, and that you DO take time out for positives as well, instead of throwing away the whole of your summer vacations in things that wont matter when we stand one day in front of Allaah.
And remember the hadeeth of the Prophet صل اللہ عليه و سلم when he said, “Everything other than remembering Allah is (considered) wasteful play except four: a man humoring his wife, a man training his horse, a man walking between targets (learning archery), and man learning swimming,” (An-Nasaa’i– authenticated by Al-Albaani)
And Allah knows best.]]>
Building great leaders requires hard work from parents, educators, teachers, counselors, imams, elder siblings, and community leaders. Some of the greatest leaders have emerged when Jahiylah was far and wide. In fact, Islaam spread at a time of great cruelties and social ills. As centuries passed, eminent leaders continued to appear even though there was corruption in the land. Therefore, instead of allowing the disheartening realities surrounding us to wallow in despair, we should focus on ways in which we can foster distinguished leaders. The biggest problem that the Ummah faces in building righteous leaders is a lack of unified vision and mission.
In this article , we will start by going over five important characteristics that every great leader must possess, giving examples of the greatest leaders along the way, and conclude with some crucial steps to be taken in order to cultivate impressive leaders. Keep a notebook and pen handy for the Action Steps listed below!
‘Umar al-Khattab narrated that the Prophet (SalAllahu alayhi was salam) said:
Deeds are [a result] only of the intentions [of the actor], and an individual is [rewarded] only according to that which he intends. Therefore, whosoever has emigrated for the sake of Allah and His messenger, then his emigration was for Allah and His messenger. Whosoever emigrated for the sake of worldly gain, or a woman [whom he desires] to marry, then his emigration is for the sake of that which [moved him] to emigrate.” [Al- Bukhari: Volume 1, Book 1, Number 1; Muslim]
Our sole intention should be to please Allaah subhanahu wa ta’ala in everything that we do, otherwise our deeds may be pointless. So many people give Zakat and do other deeds, but their intentions are to either show off, or make people respect them, etc.
Action Step: Before every action, take a moment and think about your intentions and make sure they would be pleasing to Allaah (subhanahu wa Ta’ala). Every great leader starts here. The best way to go about this is to make a list of all that you will do for the sake of Allaah (subhanahu wa Ta’ala), and then plan to achieve each task accordingly. For example, I will read 2 hadiths a night with my children and discuss it with them inshAllaah.
Allaah (subhanahu wa Ta’ala) says in the Quraan:
“We will certainly bestow on those who are patient their reward according to the best of what they used to do” [The Quraan Chapter16: Verse 96]
Having reserves of patience is the key to being an effective leader. Without patience, it is very difficult to keep oneself on the straight path, much less guide, motivate or inspire others. Indeed, anger kills all of the other great habits one may possess. Allah (subhanahu wa Ta’ala) tells us that those who are patient will have the best of rewards in the Hereafter, insha’Allah.
Action Step: Make a list of all of the things that make you angry and then find ways to overcome such situations. For example, if tardiness angers you, then figure out how you can be on time, i.e., wake up 20 minutes earlier, and then take that action step so that you may no longer get angry for that behavior.
When it comes to have the most amount of patience and enduring extremely trying times, Prophet Ayoub (alayhi salam) is truly the shining example. His (alayhi salam) story is one that we should all reflect upon and learn from. He (alayhi salam) endured so much, yet he (alayhi salam) was patient and thankful for everything, mashAllaah.
Ayoub (alayhi salam) was given many graces by Allaah (subhanahu wa Ta’ala). He (alayhi salam) had wealth, many children, health, and more. This, however, did not make Prophet Ayoub arrogant at all. Then Allaah (subhanahu wa Ta’ala) began to take each one of these things away from him, and Prophet Ayoub (alayhi salam) did not even sigh. He would thank Allaah (subhanahu wa Ta’ala) each time, and pray to Him.
He knew that it was Allaah (subhanahu wa Ta’ala) who had given him the wealth, health and children, and if Allaah (subhanahu wa Ta’ala) chose to take them away, he would not be upset. This was the kind of attitude that helped him get through his hard times, and show Allaah (subhanahu wa Ta’ala) that he truly was patient. This example should teach each of us that when a hardship or a test comes to us we must hold tight to the rope of Allaah (subhanahu wa Ta’ala), and be patient, inshAllaah and that we must do as Prophet Ayoub (alayhi salam) did and make dua to Allaah (subhanahu wa Ta’ala) as he did:
“Truly adversity has afflicted me and You are Most Merciful of all who show mercy.” [The Quraan: Chapter 21: Verse 83]
The leader must have a vision and stimulate people to make it their vision too. In this way, his team should be motivated to be a part of something inspirational. Together, they must be able to think big and help the community see the vast picture toward which they are working.
Action Step: What is it you want to achieve? What is the ultimate goal you want to work towards? For example, you want to write a book; maybe the big picture is to have the book translated in 30 languages, inshAllaah, or maybe the book will be the first in a series of 10 books inshAllaah. This is how you think bigger and dream higher. Make sure you take notes!
Prophet Muhammad (SalAllahu alayhi was salam): A True Visionary
The best example of someone who was a visionary was the Prophet Muhammad (SalAllahu alayhi was salam). One example of this would be the treaty of Hudaybia which showed the Prophet (SalAllahu alayhi was salam)’s wisdom in accepting terms that many leaders would not in a treaty for the benefit of a better Islam tomorrow. The treaty was in favor of the Quraysh and the Muslims were upset at this, especially Umar (RadiyaAllaahu Anhu). He was angry and did not want the Prophet Muhammad (SalAllahu alayhi was salam) to accept this.
However, the Prophet (SalAllahu alayhi was salam) was a visionary, he knew that sacrifice for today and being patient now would lead to a better tomorrow, inshAllaah. It definitely did, it bought peace between the Quraysh and Muslims for 10 years and that led to the conquest of Mecca, and much more, Alhamdullilah.
Allah Will Defend The True Believers (Against Evil).
Verily Allah Does Not Like The Deceiver,
Or The One Who Disbelieves.
[The Quraan, Chapter 55: Verse 9]
If a person is known to be honest, people will trust him/her inshAllaah. Nobody wants a leader who lies and deceives people. This is one of the major reasons that many people followed the Prophet (SalAllahu alayhi was salam) when he said that he was a messenger of Allaah. He was known all of his life to be the Trustworthy, and so when he said it, many people just accepted mashAllaah.
Action Step: Write down every time when you are about to lie, or when you lie. This is important because it makes you conscious of a mistake; next to it, write what will you do instead. For example, someone asks you what you do and you say I am a nurse. Technically, you are a medical assistant not a nurse. However, since nurse sounds better and that word is more common, you chose that word. Instead you must force yourself to say medical assistant, and if they do not know what that means you just explain it to them. I would say write out your list and inshAllaah look for other ways you can tell the truth. Fear Allaah (subhanahu wa Ta’ala), not people.
Narrated Jarir bin ‘Abdullah: Allaah’s Messenger (SalAllahu alayhi was salam) said,
“Allaah will not show mercy to him who does not show mercy to others.” [Al-Bukhari: Book 9 Volume 93 Hadith 473 and Muslim: Book 30 Hadith 5737]
Narrated ‘Aishah: Allaah’s Messenger (SalAllahu alayhi was salam) said,
“Allah is Kind and He loves kindness, and confers upon kindness which He does not confer upon severity, and does not confer upon any thing besides it (kindness).” [Muslim: Book 32 Hadith 6273 ]
Contrary to dictatorial tactics many leaders utilize, Islaam encourages leaders to teach, educate and guide, and then we pray for success if it is good for us inshAllaah. The results are always up to Allaah (subhannah wa Ta’alah). So if we are kind, gentle and thoughtful then inshAllaah those we are leading will love to be around us, and will love to follow our vision inshAllaah.
However, if a leader encounters problems, he/she should step back and put themselves in the other people’s situation; this enable us to be compassionate and kind. There may be times when we have to let some people go, but it must be done with respect and kindness.
Action Step: Record every time that you are not kind. What makes you annoyed?
For example, you ask someone three times to do something and they do not fulfill your request; so you get upset, and say it in a loud, rude voice. After you make your list, jot down a solution for each situation. For example, if someone does not fulfill my request by the third time, I will ask someone else to do it, or I will do it myself, inshAllaah.
However, I will not let that person make me rude or unkind. You see finding solutions and writing it down makes it easier for us to remember next time and inshAllaah will make us start to change. You may not use all of your solutions on Day 1, but keep looking at your notebook, and memorize your solutions, and then just use them enough times till they become habitual!
Leadership is understanding people and involving them to help you do a job. That takes all of the good characteristics, like integrity, dedication of purpose, selflessness, knowledge, skill, implacability, as well as determination not to accept failure. – Admiral Arleigh A. Burke
Firstly, we must educate ourselves. As parents, teachers, educators, imams and community leaders, we should understand leadership characteristics and recognize the ingredients which make great leaders. The best way to go about this is to study great leaders by examining their lives. The most useful example is of the Prophet Muhammad (SallAllaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam), and then the messengers of Allaah (alayhissallam), then remarkable leaders through time.
Action Step: I would highly recommend reading two new biographies a month, inshAllaah. Make a list of 24 bio’s that you want to read for the year inshAllaah. Then after each one is done go back to your list and get the next one inshAllaah.
After reading the biographies of the greatest people who existed, and learning leadership traits from them, then we should begin to first and foremost implement it in our lives. You see if we want to raise leaders, then inshAllaah we need to act like leaders. We need to be living examples, inshAllaah. We might not possess every trait but we sure can try our best inshAllaah. In that way, we can be effective role models for our youth. After all, they need to hear about the best people who possessed these traits and then see that inshAllaah we can still use the same qualities today.
Action Step: Use the newly found knowledge of great leaders by applying it to your lives. Make a goal of using three new things you learned from each great leader of the past, inshAllaah.
We need to have programs to help us implement leadership in our youth. The program should be geared towards educating parents, teachers, and community leaders about leadership skills. A seminar-type class on the weekends every few months inshAllaah can be a great tool for this. Then, these “graduates” should in turn have a weekly class for the youth where they impart the knowledge they learned. Dividing these classes according to age groups can optimize learning; the groups can be: 5-8 years old, 9-12 years old, 13-15 years old, 16 -19 years old.
Action Step: Have a meeting within the community, and consolidate a team of 5 members who commit to attending the class and then teaching it to the youth.
Bonus Step: Managing Our Time
This step is vital to our success as leaders inshAllaah. Great leaders mashAllaah know how to manage their time really well.
Action Step: Make a schedule for yourself and write down everything important that must get done daily inshAllaah. Then make every effort to achieve it; avoid phone interruptions, Internet distractions, etc. Get back to non-important matters when you have time, or the weekend inshAllaah.
Nurturing our youth to become potentially great leaders is not a very difficult task so long as each one of us does our part fully. We need to make time to educate ourselves, and then apply the material in our lives, and teach it inshAllaah. The biggest problems that many of us face is first taking the time out to learn it ourselves, and then the challenge of teaching it. Once we are able to work on ourselves and manage our time, then it is time to give back to our youth, inshAllaah.
Lastly, do every action step mentioned above – they really do help to make you a more organized person and leader, inshAllaah!]]>
Author: Shaykh Muhammad Salih al-’uthaymeen
Short Description: Young People are humanity’s future wealth. They offer hope and strength to their nations, and the directions they take in their lives determine the fate of their people. Understanding, addressing, and solving their problems and worries and thus if utmost importance for all members of society.
In this unique and lucid booklet and revered contemporary scholar, Shaykh Muhammad al-’uthamyeen addresses some of the ideological and sociological challenges faced by modern youth. Starting with an astute description of the state of contemporary young adults, he outlines major issues hindering their progress on the straight path of Islam. He not only covers current issues such as joblessness, estrangement between the young and their elders, and keeping good company but also discusses subjects predestination and the limits Islam places on individuals. In all instances al-’uthamyeen draws on the Quran and the authentic Sunnah to offer tangible solutions and to inspire the hearts of young people. The simplicity and straight forwardness of this work make even complicated issues easy to grasp. The wise advice the author offers is not only well presented but practical and compassionate. This book will benefit not only the young of the society but their parents and educators as well.
Praise be to Allaah.
Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):
“… Wed them with the permission of their own folk and give them their mahr (dowry) according to what is reasonable; they should be chaste, not adulterous, nor taking boyfriends…” [al-Nisaa’ 4:25]
In his commentary on this aayah, Ibn Katheer (may Allaah have mercy on him) said:
“Muhsanaat [translated as “chaste”] means that they should be pure, not indulging in zinaa (unlawful sexual conduct), hence they are described as not being musaafihaat, which means promiscuous women who do not refuse anyone who wants to commit immoral acts with them. Regarding the phrase wa laa muttakhidhaati akhdaan (‘nor taking boyfriends’), Ibn ‘Abbaas said: ‘al-musaafihaat means those who are known to commit zinaa, meaning those who will not refuse anyone who wants to commit immoral acts with them.’ Ibn ‘Abbaas also said: ‘muttakhidhaati akhdaan means lovers.’ A similar interpretation was narrated from Abu Hurayrah, Mujaahid, al-Sha’bi, al-Dahhaak, ‘Ataa’ al-Khurasaani, Yahyaa ibn Abi Katheer, Muqaatil ibn Hayyaan and al-Saddi. They said: (it means) lovers. Al-Hasan al-Basri said: ‘It means a (male) friend.’ Al-Dahhaak also said: ‘wa laa muttakhidhaati akhdaan also means a woman who has just one boyfriend or lover with whom she is happy. Allaah has also forbidden this, meaning marrying her so long as she is in that situation…’”
Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):
“Made lawful to you this day are al-tayyibaat [all kinds of halaal (lawful) foods…]. The food of the People of the Scripture (Jews and Christians) is lawful to you and yours is lawful to them. (Lawful to you in marriage) are chaste women from the believers and chaste women from those who were given the Scripture (Jews and Christians) before your time, when you have given their due mahr (bridal money given by the husband to the wife at the time of marriage), desiring chastity (i.e., taking them in legal wedlock), not committing illegal sexual intercourse, nor taking them as girlfriends. And whosoever disbelieves in the Oneness of Allaah and in all the other Articles of Faith, the fruitless is his work, and in the Hereafter he will be among the losers.” [al-Maa’idah 5:5]
Ibn Katheer (may Allaah have mercy on him) said:
“Muhsineen ghayr musaafiheen wa laa muttakhidhi akhdaan (‘desiring chastity (i.e., taking them in legal wedlock), not committing illegal sexual intercourse, nor taking them as girlfriends’). Just as Allaah imposed the condition of chastity on women, meaning that they refrain from zinaa, so it is also imposed on men. The man must also be pure and chaste. So they should be ghayr musaafiheen, meaning they should not be adulterers who do not refrain from sin and do not refuse any who come to them (for immoral purposes). Nor should they be muttakhidhi akhdaan, meaning those who have girlfriends or female lovers with whom they have an exclusive relationship, as quoted above from Soorat al-Nisaa’. (The one with many lovers or the one with just one lover) are both the same. For this reason Imaam Ahmad ibn Hanbal (may Allaah have mercy on him) said that it is not right to marry a promiscuous woman unless she has repented, or to arrange a marriage of such a woman to a chaste man, so long as she is still conducting herself in this manner. Similarly, he (Ahmad) says that it is not right for a promiscuous man to marry a chaste woman unless he repents and gives up his immoral conduct, because of this aayah… We will discuss this matter in further detail after quoting the aayah (interpretation of the meaning):
“Let no man guilty of fornication or adultery marry any but a woman similarly guilty, or an unbeliever: nor let any but such a man or an unbeliever marry such a woman: to the Believers such a thing is forbidden.” [al-Noor 24:3]
Among the stories that show that it is forbidden to have girlfriends or to marry them is the story of Marthad ibn Abi Marthad, who used to smuggle Muslim prisoners-of-war from Makkah to Madeenah. There was a prostitute in Makkah, called ‘Anaaq, who had been a friend of Marthad’s. Marthad had promised to take one of the prisoners from Makkah to Madeenah. He said: “I came to the shade of one of the gardens of Makkah on a moonlit night, then ‘Anaaq came and saw my shadow by the garden. When she reached me, she recognized me and said: ‘Marthad?’ I said, ‘Marthad.’ She said: ‘Welcome! Stay with us tonight.’ I said, ‘O ‘Anaaq, Allaah has forbidden zinaa (unlawful sexual relations)’ … I came to the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) and asked him, ‘O Messenger of Allaah, should I marry ‘Anaaq?’ The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) remained silent and did not answer me at all, until the aayah ‘Let no man guilty of adultery or fornication marry any but a woman similarly guilty, or an Unbeliever; nor let any but such a man or an Unbeliever marry such a woman; to the Believers such a thing is forbidden’ [al-Noor 24:3 – Yusuf ‘Ali’s translation] was revealed. Then the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: ‘O Marthad, Let no man guilty of adultery or fornication marry any but a woman similarly guilty, or an Unbeliever; nor let any but such a man or an Unbeliever marry such a woman, so do not marry her.’”
(Reported by al-Tirmidhi, 3101; he said: it is a hasan ghareeb hadeeth).
‘Abd-Allaah ibn Maghfal reported that there was a woman who had been a prostitute during the days of ignorance (before Islam). A man passed by her, or she passed by him, and he touched her. She said: “Stop it! (Mah! A word connoting a rebuke or denunciation). Allaah has done away with shirk and had brought Islam.” So he left her alone and went away, still looking at her, until he walked into a wall, hitting his face. He came to the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) and told him what had happened. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “You are a man for whom Allaah wishes good. When Allaah, may He be blessed and exalted, wishes good for His slave, He hastens the punishment for his sin, so that it is dealt with before the Day of Resurrection.” (Reported by al-Haakim, 1/349, who said this hadeeth is saheeh according to the conditions of Muslim, and al-Dhahabi agreed with him. See Saheeh al-Jaami’, 308).
These aayaat and ahaadeeth clearly indicate that it is haraam (forbidden) for men to have any kind of friendship or relationship with non-mahram women (women to whom they are not closely-related and to whom they could get married). The evil consequences and misery caused by such relationships are obvious to anyone who observes real life. A similar question has been asked under #2085. We ask Allaah to keep us far away from that which is forbidden, to protect us from all that may earn His wrath and to keep us safe from a painful punishment. May Allaah bless our Prophet Muhammad.
اللهُمَّ لا سَهْلَ إلا مَا جَعَلتَهُ سَهْلا وَ أنتَ تَجْعَلُ الحزْنَ إذا شِئْتَ سَهْلا
Allahumma la sahla illa ma ja’altahu sahla, wa ‘anta taj-alul hazna idha shi’ta sahla
Meaning: “O Allah! There is nothing easy except what You make easy, and You make the difficult easy if it be Your Will.”
Allahumma inii as’aluka fahmal-nabiyyen wa hifthal mursaleen al-muqarrabeen.
O Allah! I ask You for the understanding of the prophets and the memory of the messengers, and those nearest to You.
Allahumma ijal leesanee ’amiran bi thikrika wa qalbi bi khashyatika.
O Allah! Make my tongue full of Your remembrance, and my heart with consciousness of You.
Innaka ‘ala ma-tasha’-u qadeer wa anta hasbun-allahu wa na’mal wakeel.
(O Allah!) You do whatever You wish, and You are my Availer and Protector and the best of aid.
Allahhumma inni astaodeeuka ma qara’tu wama hafaz-tu. Faradduhu ‘allaya inda hagati elayhi.Innaka ‘ala ma-tasha’-u qadeer wa anta hasbeeya wa na’mal wakeel.
O Allah! I entrust You with what I have read and I have studied. (O Allah!) Bring it back to me when I am in need of it.
(O Allah!) You do whatever You wish, and You are my Availer and Protector and the best of aid.
Allahumma la sahla illama ja-’altahu sahla wa anta taj ‘alu al hazana etha shi’ta sahla.
O Allah! Nothing is easy except what You have made easy. If You wish, You can make the difficult easy.
There are ahaadeeth which indicate that this is to be said at times of hardship and difficulty. All of that includes exams and other difficulties.
1 – It was narrated that Anas ibn Maalik (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Whoever says – when leaving his house – Bismillaah, tawakkaltu ‘ala Allaah, laa hawla wa laa quwwata illa Billaah (In the name of Allaah, I put my trust in Allaah, there is no power and no strength except with Allaah), it will be said to him: You are taken care of and you are protected, and the Shaytaan will keep away from him.”
2 – It was also narrated that Anas ibn Maalik (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: If something upset him, the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) would say: “Yaa Hayyu yaa Qayyoom bi rahmatika astagheeth (O Ever Living, O Sustainer, by Your mercy I seek help).”
3 – It was also narrated from Anas (may Allaah be pleased with him) that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “O Allaah, nothing is easy but that which You make easy and You can make hardship easy if You will.”
4 – It was narrated that Sa’d ibn Abi Waqqaas (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “The prayer of Dhu’l-Noon when he was in the belly of the fish: ‘Laa ilaaha illa Anta, subhaanaka inni kuntu min al-zaalimeen (There is no god but You, glory to You, verily I was one of the wrongdoers).’ A Muslim never calls upon his Lord with these words concerning any matter, but his prayer is answered.”
References for the above:
Narrated by Abu Dawood, 5095; al-Tirmidhi, 3426; classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh Abi Dawood.
Narrated by al-Tirmidhi, 3524; classed as hasan by al-Albaani in al-Silsilah al-Saheehah, 3182.
Narrated by Ibn Hibbaan, 3/255; classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in al-Silsilah al-Saheehah, 2886.
Narrated by al-Tirmidhi, 3505; classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in al-Silsilah al-Saheehah, 1644.