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  1. Question: How do we lawfully entertain ourselves as teenagers? A young teenage Muslim asks how do we lawfully entertain ourselves today when almost everything around us is Haraam? Example: most of the video games are Haraam, the trending pubG, Netflix nights, listening to music, smoking cigarettes /shisha, having haraam relationships … Even when going out to eat in Halaal restaurants there is blasting music. Everything trending is Haraam! With the current outrage on the movies netflix released/yet to release , our respected scholars have been encouraging the cancellation of the subscription to netflix, the teenagers feel that religion is way too strict and the views of Islam are very extreme. Being a practising Muslim is extremely difficult if not impossible. With such an environment how can a young Muslim entertain themselves? For such a teenager what advise could you give? What are some of the Halaal forms of entertainment other than going for picnics/walks in the parks which come across boring? Answer: In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful. As-salāmu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullāhi wa-barakātuh. At the onset, it is important to understand the importance of the youth and their impact on society. The world of today is an exemplification of the youth of yesterday and the world of tomorrow will be the exemplification of the youth of today. In essence, the youth plays an integral role in shaping the world. If the youth are trained to be constructive and responsible, we will live in a more responsible world. If the youth are irresponsible and destructive, we will end up living in a world of destruction and disaster. Many of the Sahaba (Radhiyallahu Anhum) of Rasullullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wassalam) were youth. Rasullullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wassalam) shaped their minds in such a way that they contributed towards a perfect way of life and established a legacy. We do understand the mindset of youth of today. They face great challenges, mainly due to advancement and evolution in technology. The youth of today are faced to fight a war that is unique. No other generation of youth in history have had to fight a war of this nature. Teenagers feel that all forms of entertainment are haram. Remember, there is a reason for every prohibition in Shariah. The prohibition might be against our intelligence and logic. This can be explained with an example. A father prohibits his son from consuming/ingesting poison. The child does not understand the harm of the poison. However, the father understands the harm of the poison. In the same way, while the son may feel disillusioned with the father’s diplomatic attitude of prohibiting him from the poison, the father does not relent on his attitude of stopping the son from the poison. He knows better than his son. Allah is Al-Hakeem (The All-Wise). He prohibits us from doing certain things according to His infinite wisdom and knowledge. We trust the wisdom and infinite knowledge of Allah and submit to His guidance. Yes, it is natural to err and sin. It is part of human nature. We are not sin and error proof. If that was the situation, then there would be no difference between us and angels. We have a distinct way of life. Our guide is the Quran and Sunnah and Our ultimate destination is Akhirah. We should not constrict enjoyment to what the West and the disbelievers have indoctrinated us to believe as enjoyment. Allah describes them in the Quran: {وَالَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا يَتَمَتَّعُونَ وَيَأْكُلُونَ كَمَا تَأْكُلُ الْأَنْعَامُ وَالنَّارُ مَثْوًى لَهُمْ} [محمد: 12] Translation: The disbelievers while away their time in enjoyment of the world, eat and drink like that of livestock. The fire of hell is their final abode. (Muhammed: 12) They have a different outlook to life. We should not get overwhelmed and have an inferiority complex. We should be proud of our Islamic identity and that our lives are governed by Shariah. Therefore, it is essential that we nurture our youth with Islamic values and not western values just as Rasullullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wassalam) did with the Sahaba (Radhiyallahu Anhum). Western values have a damaging impact on the minds of the youth. We could make a comparison, by means of a table, between youth who are nurtured according to Islamic values and youth who are nurtured according to Western values and ideologies: Islamic values Western values Effect of western values From a young age, the existence of Allah is indoctrinated in the mind From a young age, the non-existence of Allah is indoctrinated in the mind Atheism, Agnosticism and Apostacy Nurtured to stay within the boundaries of Shariah Liberal way of thinking Pursuing passions and desires Religion and worship are key elements in a person’s life Religion and worship are separated from everyday life No peace and contentment in life Ethical and moral business ethos Nurtured with prejudice and immoral business ethos Exploitation, manipulation, corruption etc Respect for humanity at large Religion, colour, lust and creed Nationalism and racism Rights of others Self-centred and selfish Surge in disputes, both on a micro and macro level Shame and modesty Shamelessness and nudity Promiscuity, rape, children born out of wedlock etc Imagine a life of Atheism, Agnosticism, Apostacy, pursuing one’s passions and desires, a life without peace and contentment, exploitation, manipulation, corruption, nationalism, racism, disputes, promiscuity, rape etc in comparison to a life of Tawheed, following the laws of Shariah, peace and contentment in one’s life, altruism, social conscience, equality, unity, chastity, etc. One is a life of eternal disaster and the other is a life of eternal success. The key component to the life of a teenager is his/her company. In present times, company is not restricted to who one socialises with. Rather, with technological advancements, social circles have also evolved. Social media has the global village freely interacting. Some advertising their fake lives, whilst others brag about their ten-course meals. All types of company from different Ism’s; secularists, lesbians, liberals, LGBTQ apologetics alike. Therefore, just as it is imperative that teenagers choose their social circles wisely, so too should they on social media. What they see and hear on social media impacts the way they think and behave. Hence, if they have Instagram, Twitter or whatever it may be, it is imperative that they are wise and alert regarding who they follow. See the following narrations: الْمَرْءُ عَلَى دِينِ خَلِيلِهِ، فَلْيَنْظُرْ أَحَدُكُمْ مَنْ يُخَالِلْ (مسند احمد: 8417) Translation: A person is upon the religion of his friend. So be wary as to whom you befriend. (Musnad Ahmed: 8417) سَبْعَةٌ يُظِلُّهُمُ اللَّهُ فِي ظِلِّهِ، يَوْمَ لاَ ظِلَّ إِلَّا ظِلُّهُ: الإِمَامُ العَادِلُ، وَشَابٌّ نَشَأَ فِي عِبَادَةِ رَبِّهِ، وَرَجُلٌ قَلْبُهُ مُعَلَّقٌ فِي المَسَاجِدِ، وَرَجُلاَنِ تَحَابَّا فِي اللَّهِ اجْتَمَعَا عَلَيْهِ وَتَفَرَّقَا عَلَيْهِ، وَرَجُلٌ طَلَبَتْهُ امْرَأَةٌ ذَاتُ مَنْصِبٍ وَجَمَالٍ، فَقَالَ: إِنِّي أَخَافُ اللَّهَ، وَرَجُلٌ تَصَدَّقَ، أَخْفَى حَتَّى لاَ تَعْلَمَ شِمَالُهُ مَا تُنْفِقُ يَمِينُهُ، وَرَجُلٌ ذَكَرَ اللَّهَ خَالِيًا فَفَاضَتْ عَيْنَاهُ (صحيح البخاري: 660) Translation: Allah will give shade, to seven, on the Day when there will be no shade but His. (These seven persons are) a just ruler, a youth who has been brought up in the worship of Allah (i.e. worships Allah sincerely from childhood), a man whose heart is attached to the Masjid, two persons who love each other only for Allah’s sake and they meet and part in Allah’s cause only, a man who refuses the call of a charming woman of noble birth for illicit intercourse with her and says: I am afraid of Allah, a man who gives charitable gifts so secretly that his left hand does not know what his right hand has given and a person who remembers Allah in seclusion and his eyes are then flooded with tears. (Bukhari: 660) Many people have the misconception that having fun is haram. That is not so. It is permissible to have Halal forms of fun, for example: Exercise is very much a trend among the youth and adults alike. One can do many cross-fit workouts or general workouts at home with friends or siblings. Organize sports events with friends. Do horse riding, archery, swimming, cycling, skating, rollerblading etc. Encourage scholars and adults to spend weekends organising stimulating events with the youth like camping, hiking, vacations, quad biking, hunting, fishing etc. Reading appropriate literature was a common trend amongst youth. It enhances the mind and thought of an individual. We make Du’a that Allah protect and guide the youth. Aameen. And Allah Ta’āla Knows Best Mufti Ebrahim Desai Darul Mahmood | darulmahmood.net https://darulmahmood.net/2020/12/13/how-do-we-lawfully-entertain-ourselves-as-teenagers/
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