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Harms Of Television

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AN EXPLANATION FOR THE ENQUIRING PUBLIC

 

In this age of technological advancement, especially in the field of media and communication, the Ummah is facing great challenges. Whilst one cannot deny some of the benefits, the open and evident harms cannot be disregarded, particularly with regard to the television and its harmful effects.

 

The harms of television for Muslims are crystal clear as it erodes the lustre of Imaan, retards their spiritual progress, ravages their morality and modesty and corrupts their hearts, minds and souls.

 

It is due to this corruptive influence of television that the pious elders and Ulama-e-Kiraam of the Ummah have repeatedly highlighted its harms and declared it impermissible and unlawful.

 

Hence, the Darul Uloom regards the viewing of television as extremely detrimental and harmful for a Muslim’s Imaan and Islam, though it be Islamic content. We are totally opposed to the idea of using the medium of television to propagate and disseminate Islam due to the glaring harms and repercussions, some of which are:

 

  • Television is mainly a medium of entertainment. Thus, using it as a medium to disseminate a ‘serious’ issue such as religion cannot be effective. It will be taken in the light of entertainment.
  • As Islam is haq (truth), the method of propagating and disseminating Islam should also be haq (in line with the tenets of Islam).
  • Utilizing baatil (un-Islamic) methods to propagate Islam is bereft of goodness and divine guidance. Rather it promotes baatil (falsehood) itself.
  • Viewing of even Islamic content on television prevents a person from being engaged in direct acts of Ibadah (devotion) such as Salah, Recitation of the Quraan Majeed and remembrance of Allah Ta’aala.
  • Television promotes picture-making and photography which is against the very grain of Islam.
  • Ultimately the viewer due to the dictates of his carnal self and delusion of Shaytan, may end up watching such content which could destroy his Imaan and moral fibre.

 

Khalid Baig very aptly states: “The simple fact is that no one buys a TV because they desperately wanted to learn about Islam and it was the best way of doing it. The TV lounge is not a study room and all the Islamic videos in the world are not going to make it one. It is a piece of Hollywood. The rest is camouflage or self-deception. The earlier we get out of it, the better.”

 

The great luminary and Allamah, Hadrat Maulana Yusuf Binnori Sahib said: ”If we do not adopt this stance which has been explained, then today, for the sake of the people, we will be using films to propagate Deen, tomorrow women without pardah/hijaab will be used for spreading Deen, and we will try to bring people onto Deen through gatherings of music and dancing…and in this way, in the name of propagating Deen, we will be trampling upon and destroying the laws of Shariah, one by one.” [Adapted from Ulama-e-deoband kê aakhree lamahaat pg.170/171] 

 

Hence, we urge the Ummah to acquire their knowledge of Islam through the authentic and traditional mediums such as the programmes conducted by the Ulama from the Masajid, Madaaris, Majaalis and the programmes of the Tabligh Jamaat, etc. We also appeal to the Ummah to ensure that their children receive a sound Islamic education and grounding at the primary Madrasahs. 

 

Imam Malik’s statement is very apt for our times when he stated: ”The latter part of this Ummah will not be reformed except in the way the former part of this Ummah was reformed.”

 

May Allah Ta’aala guide us on the straight path and grant us the true and correct understanding of Deen.

 

Statement of Darul Uloom Azaadville Regarding Television

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Bismihi Ta'ala
 
No-Television.jpg

The Influence of Television
 
 
 
One of the many Sunnats of the Ambiya[1] (Alayhimus Salaam)[2] is that of Hayaa – shame and modesty : a quality which is sorely missing in the lives of the majority of Muslims today, and which should otherwise be an outstanding characteristic and feature of all Muslims, whether married or un-married. The Hadeeth states : Hayaa (Modesty) is a branch of Imaan.’
 
 
Television is such an evil that if our society only understood its reality, then they would find no excuse to watch. Its spiritual harm is that it takes away the hayaa and shame of our men, women and children. 
 
 
The content of most television programmes is nothing but immodesty and indecency, which invites nothing but immodesty and indecency – into our homes, into our lives and the lives of our children.
 
 
However, this truth and reality seems to just pass over the understanding of even those Muslims who have some link with Deen. Many are regular with Salaah, they are seen in the Masjid, they are wearing the garb of the pious and yet they will be the ones to present flimsy and feeble excuses to view television programmes.
 
Let us consider this situation of sin from the following view – which Alhamdulillah[3], has been a means of many getting rid of the television.
 
 
-   If a person has to knock on your door and tell you : ‘I would like to use your lounge to commit adultery.’
 
 
-   Or a group of some friends have to request you : ‘We would like to use your home to gamble and enjoy our liquor.’
 
 
-   Or a group of youngsters have to tell you : ‘We have chosen your home as a venue for our partying, dancing, drug-taking and fornicating.’
 
 
-   Or a Christian family has to request you : ‘We would like to use your home as a venue for our church ceremony : The marriage of our daughter as well as the baptism of our grandchild. We have already obtained the consent of one of our priests.’
 
-   Or some idol-worshippers have to suggest : ‘We would like to carry out some of our religious rites in your home. We would like to bring our idols also. You are more than welcome to observe or participate in our rites. ’
 
 
Many Muslims, on hearing such requests, will get very angry; will express disgust – if not swear and curse such suggestions.
 
 
However, these very same Muslims who will even resort to swearing and cursing such proposals, invite into their homes all of the above by the switch of the television, by hiring English and Hindi films and DVDs and downloading porn and other films from the Internet. There is so much of adultery, partying and other filth that we seem to just welcome into our homes – least realizing the consequences.
 
 
Just to give you one example and this is but the tip of the iceberg – and it is said with the intention of removing the blindfold that most parents wear :
 
 
A father of four children mentioned to me that he had got rid of his television and he thereafter explained why. He said that late one night he heard strange noises from his children’s room. On opening the door of their room, he found their television switched on. […This is our concept of modesty : parents must have their own television, to view all kinds of filthy programmes in their privacy, and children must have their own television to view all kinds of indecency in their privacy (Na-uzu Billah).]
 
 
The father mentioned that there were dirty and obscene scenes of naked people on the television screen. He mentioned that it was filthy and that it shocked him; but what had him even more shaken was that his children were all undressed, engaging in the same kind of indecent acts. They were imitating the pornography they were viewing. He said himself, that until then he had not considered the harm of television. It took this kind of incident to wake him up. …This is just one example of so many. Do we wish to face something similar?
 
 
…Do we care to even know what our sons and daughters are doing in the secrecy of their rooms ? The fact that many demand that no one ‘invade’ their space and privacy to the extent of having ‘No Entry’ signs on their doors, should have parents a little more than worried…  especially if they are viewing television and are surfing the net or have free access with cell phones.
 
 
Many have written, that after watching certain films or programmes, the desire came strongly into their hearts to take drugs, drink liquor, murder their parents, indulge in homosexuality, engage in adulterous relationships, commit suicide, rape, and so much else – and many of them do so.
 
 
Moreover, with sins like television and evil, lustful glancing, Allah Ta’ala removes the love between husband and wife and even ones children become disobedient.
 
 
There are many husbands who entertain thoughts of and fantasize of other women when with their wives, and they will, especially when they are watching different actresses and television presenters. Many wives are guilty of the same infidelity having seen or socialized with ghair-mahareem. Many women are so infatuated and obsessed with some soccer player or cricket player that they become dissatisfied with their husbands, and spend their time fantasizing.
 
 
Had the person not viewed all those ghair-mahareem on the television screen and computer screen, and had lowered his gaze in real life situations, then he would not have desired that which he cannot have, and there would not have been dissatisfaction with his (or her) spouse.
 
Moreover we complain : There is no barkat[4] in our homes; there is no barkat in our wealth; there is no barkat in our time. Our children are rebellious. The husband is having an extra-marital relationship. The daughter has accepted Christianity. The son is on drugs … and the list of complaints does not end.
 
 
Then who is to blame except the one who brought all of this Haraam into the home by purchasing the television and exposing the family to so much of sin.
 
 
…Great ‘Ulama became Bay’at upon the hands of Maulana Hakeem Fakhrudeen (Rahmatullah ‘alaih). He mentioned that there was a time, that with the rising and setting of the sun, he saw nothing but noor in Surat[5]. The atmosphere was one of Noor. The day commenced with Salaah, Tilawat, Zikrullah…
 
 
After the cinemas and television and videos flooded Surat, there was nothing but ‘zulmat’ – darkness. With the distraction of such entertainment, Ibaadah becomes a forgotten duty.
 
 
One Wali of Allah Ta’ala, on visiting a home, mentioned that he perceived the sin of Zina (adultery) from the walls of that home. He was able to recognize this due to the purity of his heart. The residents of that home were not indulging in adultery but they were watching the sin on television. 
 
 
When fire burns against a white wall, it blackens the wall. The Ahle-Dil, with their purified hearts, see the fire of sins which has burnt and blackened the white hearts of the Muslims.
 
 
Would that we take lesson and take measures to protect ourselves and our children.
 

[1] Ambiyaa : Prophets
[2] Alayhimus Salaam : ‘May peace be upon them’.
[3] Alhamdulillah : ‘All praise is due to Allah.’
[4] barkat : blessing
[5] Surat : Well-known city of Gujerat, India

 

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Understanding Television
What Can Be Done?

By Khalid Baig

 

Television has spread like a wild fire in the world, including the Muslim world. It seems to have overcome the limitations of space and time.

Consider place. In Saudi Arabia, one can find the imprints of Hollywood only a few yards away from the Haram, the most sacred of all sanctuaries of Islam. Videocassettes are easily available at stores. A hotel attendant, at a walking distance from the Haram al-Sharif in Makkah can be found busy watching English movies on the television in his office even as the prayers are going on. At the Jeddah airport, the Umrah pilgrims can watch a European beauty contest courtesy of an Egyptian TV channel being broadcast to the airport television sets.

Consider time. Ramadan is the most sacred month in the Islamic calendar, a period of time that is to be devoted to direct acts of worship of Allah. Yet, during Ramadan, believers around the world can be found glued to their television sets when they should be busy making dua, doing dhikr and tilawa or offering nafl prayers.

Or consider the time of suffering. Hardly a day goes by when we do not get the news of pain and suffering from Palestine, Kashmir, Iraq, Chechnya, Afghanistan, or a dozen other hot spots around the globe. Yet, between all the suffering and grieving that accompanies the tragedy, the dish antennas on the rooftops have been flourishing. In the past at times of catastrophes people would turn to Allah, would stop going to the cinema houses, and would repent from sins, even though temporarily. Today, there is an ever-increasing appetite for the television fun. This is also true in the lands closest to the areas of suffering. On days when a strike is called to protest Indian atrocities in Kashmir, the video stores in Karachi run out of videos of Indian movies.

Throughout the world religious, moral and social values have been drastically undermined by this great "technological gift" of the century. And entire nations seem to be helplessly "enjoying" the invasion. When people are doing nothing, they watch television. When they are doing something else, they still have television in the background. The device has contributed to the addition of a new space in the architecture of the private home: the TV lounge. It is a space where perfect strangers come to pedal nudity, immorality, and hedonism. This is the space, which increasingly controls the entire house.

It is fashionable to complain about "excessive" sex and violence on television. Even those who make money from this enterprise willingly do that. CNN tycoon Ted Turner said in July 93 before a U.S Congressional subcommittee: "I don't need experts to tell me that the amount of violence on television today and its increasingly graphic portrayal can be harmful to children. Television violence is the single most significant factor contributing to violence in America." And a poll released in February 95 in the U.S. by Children Now, whose directors include TV producers and Warner Brothers Chairman, reported that most children believe that what they see on television encourages fornication, disrespect for parents, telling lies, and aggressive behavior.

The most significant thing here is that what the TV industry wants us to discuss (and we willingly follow) is what is ON television, not television itself. Everyone will wholeheartedly agree with the problems with TV programs and offer all kinds of advice. (Watch the programs with your children. Tell them what is wrong. Be critical. Be creative.) Irrational and meaningless as it is, this exercise will nonetheless soothe your irritation. In the meantime, keep on watching. It is fun. It is also unavoidable.

In about two decades, this "wonderful" technical development has played havoc with societies around the globe. But what is even more unprecedented is the ambivalence with which these societies face this greatest of all invasions. Underlying this is a strongly held belief that television is a neutral tool that can be used with equal facility for good or evil. Unfortunately, this position has been taken without any critical examination of the facts. It is about time that we approached the subject with an open mind.Neutral Tool?

Is technology ever neutral? "[Every technology] has within its physical form a predisposition toward being used in certain ways and not others," writes Niel Postman, chair of the department of Communication Arts at New York University. "Only those who know nothing of the history of technology believe that a technology is entirely neutral." (Amusing Ourselves to Death, 1985).

What about television? It reflects the idea that serious discourse can be carried out through pictures instead of words. As Postman explains: "The single most important fact about television is that people watch it, which is why it is called ‘television.' And what they watch, and like to watch, are moving pictures?? millions of them, of short duration and dynamic variety. It is in the nature of the medium that it must suppress the content of ideas in order to accommodate the requirements of visual interest."

Words and pictures do not occupy the same universe of discourse. A piece of writing requires one to go beyond the shape of the letters to read them. It requires thought to understand what is being said. Television does not require reflection, in fact it does not even permit it. That is why little children can spend hours in front of the mini screen. Television can titillate, it cannot teach. It can bring images into our heart, not ideas into our mind. It appeals to the emotions, not the intellect.

But isn't a picture worth a thousand words? Is it? It is important to note that this claim itself is made in words. A picture cannot make any claims. For reason, arguments, claims, and judgment belong in the universe of words not pictures. That is why advertisers love pictures. Consider an ad for, say, Coca-Cola, that just shows young people singing, dancing, having fun, and enjoying the drink. The audiences make the connection between happiness and Coke. This ad cannot be refuted. It makes no claim, so there is nothing to refute.Medium Is The Message

The above explains Marshal McLuhan's famous aphorism. The inherent, built in biases of a medium allow certain types of messages and not others. The communication is conditioned by the medium. It is enhanced or distorted by it. The medium is the message. And when the medium is TV, the message is Entertainment. As Postman notes: "Entertainment is the supra ideology of all discourse on television." Whether it is news, science, religion, or education, if it is happening on TV, it must follow the dictates of entertainment.

In fact, a new term has been coined indicating a blend of education and entertainment: Edutainment. It smells like the language problem of a TV baby. But remember that it is already being used by the serious press. Which suggests that edutainment will produce even more edutainment!Like A Drug

Actually, TV is not just another kind of entertainment either. As a project by the National Institute of Mental Health in the U.S. involving 1200 subjects in nine studies over a 13 year period found in 1990, television is like a drug. The researchers asked the subjects, ages 10 to 82, to note down their activities and moods every time a beeper was activated, which was done randomly. The researchers found that when people sit down to watch TV, particularly for long periods, they tend to be in low moods. The longer they watch, the less able they are to concentrate. As time goes on, they grow sadder, lonelier, more irritable, and more hostile. Although people are relaxed when the television set is on, when they turn it off, they are less relaxed than before they began, "much like a drug that makes people feel better while they are doing it but worse afterward." And just like a drug the weaker segments of the society are its greatest target. Thus in the U.S. blacks tend to watch more TV than whites. And now thanks to satellite TV transmissions over which the poor countries have no control, the rest of the world is being turned into the U.S. black under class.Islamic Work And Television

Can this dangerous drug be somehow converted into a medicine? Not too long ago, a young professional in the U.S. approached prominent Muslim scholar and Deputy Cairman of the Jeddah based Islamic Fiqh Council of the Organization of Islamic Conference (OIC), Justice Taqi Usmani to inquire about his profession. He produced computer graphics for the television and motion picture industry. This is the age of the media, and the only effective way to spread Islam today is through television and movies, he argued. If we do not learn the trade how shall we be able to produce such programs and if we don't who will, he inquired. Yet, some people had told him that it was not a good profession.

"I have given a lot of anxious thought to this issue," replied Justice Usmani in his characteristic measured tone, weighing every word. "And I have reached the conclusion that the cause of Islam cannot be served through television, especially under the current circumstances. You should seek another line of work."

Frankly, there are lot of enthusiasts who may be totally bewildered by this answer for it challenges both conventional wisdom as well as some dearly held dreams. They may even consider anyone making this suggestion as belonging to the Flat Earth Society: backward, anti-progress, ignorant of today's realities. Let us grant them their day in court and look at their case objectively.

The enthusiasts have shown interest in three primary areas. The first deals with propagation of Islam. There are lots of sincere Muslims putting lot of hope in a yet-to-be-released video that will attract the people of the world to Islam by the thousands. They are simply confusing Dawah with propaganda! Dawah means inviting people to the Straight Path by relaying the True Message to them without any distortion. It is a very serious message and requires a serious medium to deliver it. The message is for their own benefit and what they do with it is their own business. Our job is done once we have communicated the message correctly. Our job is not to manipulate people into submission to Allah any more than it is to coerce them into it. A Dawah worker is a teacher, a propagandist is a manipulator. Television is a good tool for manipulating, not for teaching.

The second area deals with the education ("edutainment") of children. Many videos have already been produced for this purpose. In one program from a popular series of such videos, a puppet named Adam drives a skateboard to the mosque. Scenes of Adam doing his antics are mixed with the videos of real children praying. But there is no doubt that Adam is the hero of this story. Here is a clear case of the medium distorting the message. The children who learn to pray this way may learn the mechanics of Salat, but they would have paid a terrible price for it. The idea of Salat will be associated in their mind with the images of puppets, skateboards, and the idea of fun. Missing will be the spiritual dimension of prayer, the solemnness and grace of this pillar of Islam. Such videos are very popular as they help assuage the guilt feelings of parents over their failure to control the TV in the first place.

To be fair there is a useful role for these videos but it is not normally perceived. Doctors use nicotine patches to help their patients stop smoking. Nicotine is not a medicine, but it becomes therapeutic under the circumstances. Similarly, the TV addicts may be helped by such videos to get over their addiction. It might work if that is the goal. But this is very different from the view that here is a Brave New Way of teaching Islam. The children and their parents must realize that ultimately they have to learn their religion the old fashioned way: read books, listen to lectures, work hard.

The third type of videos are used by relief organizations showing the terrible situation of Muslims in Kashmir, Bosnia, Palestine and elsewhere. The intentions are noble, the results look great. But someone must ask the hard question: Why should the Muslims need disaster pornography before they can come to the help of their brothers and sisters? What are the implications of this practice for both present and future?

There are, of course, cases where the TV is being used against its grain, where the only video is that of a talking head. Such Islamic programs in Egypt or Saudi Arabia, as elsewhere, may not contain all the dangers cited above, solely because there the TV is being used just as an expensive radio. The problem is such programs will not be able to withstand the onslaught of CNN or MTV, of dazzling colors and dynamic pictures. The question remains how long can you use a tool against its grain?

The simple fact is that no one buys a TV and VCR because they desperately wanted to learn about Islam and it was the best way of doing it. The TV lounge is not a study room and all the Islamic videos in the world are not going to make it one. It is a peace of Hollywood. The rest is camouflage or self-deception. The earlier we get out of it, the better.What Can Be Done?Television is powerful. It is everywhere. Is there anything that us mortals can do about it? The answer is yes. Things can be done at individual, as well as collective levels. At the individual level, try using the ON/OFF switch. It takes some effort and will power, but the device can be turned off. The key is to involve the entire family. Those nervous about the idea may rest assured that there is no known disease linked to lack of exposure to TV! Also those who have tried it know that it becomes easier with time. Community Organizations and Islamic Schools can help by educating the people about the perils of watching TV, countering the social pressures, and providing healthy alternatives.

Ramadan: The TV Free Month. Our best chance of kicking the television habit comes in Ramadan every year. It is the time of year when every Muslim who has any trace of Iman in his or her heart, is naturally inclined toward doing good and staying away from evil. And it should be like that. Did not the Prophet, Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam, curse the Muslim who finds Ramadan but does not use it to seek forgiveness for his previous sins? If we cannot leave sins or vain activities during Ramadan, when can we? We not only have the strongest moral and religious reasons to do so, it is also easy because the regular activities of Ramadan leave little time to be wasted in front of television.

Muslim organizations and communities will do a great service by launching a campaign to declare Ramadan as the TV free month. Urge all the Muslims in your community to turn it off for at least one month. And who knows, after one month many may decide to stay away from it because of the personal insights they got through the experience.

 

Of course, if you are convinced, do not wait until the next Ramadan. Start today.

 

By Khalid Baig

Courtesy: www.everymuslim.net           

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Are watching cartoons and animated movies permissible?

what is the ruling on watching cartoons and animated movies and  playing games ?

 
Answer

In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.

As-salāmu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullāhi wa-barakātuh. 

 

The permissibility of digital photography and videos is a highly contested issue amongst contemporary ‘Ulamā. Whilst many ‘Ulamā permit this, many others consider it to be the same as typical photography, hence deeming it impermissible.

 

However, there are many other aspects to be considered in cartoons and games that are often overlooked. Cartoons have proved to be extremely detrimental to a child’s health by many researchers and psychologists. Some of the points deduced from these researches are as follows:

 

  • Children may become less sensitive to the pain and suffering of others.
  • Children who watch violence neither fear violence nor are they bothered by violence in general.
  • Children are more likely to become aggressive or resort to harmful actions towards others.
  • High levels of violence in cartoons can make children more aggressive.
  • Animated shows aimed at youngsters often have more brutality than programmes broadcast for general audiences.[1]
  • Children have grown much more interested in cartoons in recent years and it has become the main pastime for them; whereas previously children spent their time in outdoor activities playing with their peers and enjoying different games.
  • Children who consistently spend more than 4 hours a day watching TV are more likely to be overweight and are prone to violence.
  • Kids who see violent acts are more likely to show aggressive behavior and also may fear that the world is scary and that something bad will happen to them.
  • These children are impatient and disobedient.
  • Increases their appetite for more violence in entertainment and in real life. Cartoon violence is damaging to the children because they cannot tell the difference between real life and fiction.
    • The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) and the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (AACAP) both believe that TV does influence the behavior of children as young as one year old.

 

“Children who view shows in which violence is very realistic, frequently repeated or unpunished are more likely to imitate what they see,” AACAP says.

 

This speaks to the impressionable minds of children, who are still learning control of their minds and bodies, and are likely to mimic what they see. AACAP also stresses the need for parents to keep a close eye on what their children watch. “Parents must be there,” AACAP said.[2]

 

  • Children who watch too much cartoons on television are more likely to have mental and emotional problems, along with brain and eye injuries and unexpectedly the risk of a physical problem increases.
  • From the time children start school to the time that they graduate they are averaged to spend around 18,000 hours watching television.
  • ·        A tremendous amount of childhood involvement with electronic media can limit social interaction and may obstruct the development of a brain’s social systems.
  • In December 1997, an episode of the Japanese cartoon “Pocket Monster” (later renamed “Pokémon” for international distribution) drew worldwide attention after multiple cases of children suffering seizures after watching the episode were reported (Warner, 2004).
  • “Either high-speed flashes of light or rapid color changes are thought able to induce seizures in vulnerable individuals.” They found this to be the reason for so many seizures in Japan. “Rapid changing stimuli can play havoc with the special cells in the retina called rods and cones that help the eye transmit visual information to the brain.” 
  • Cartoons are displaying false sense of reality upon children. At a young age, this false sense of reality can really affect them. The risk of injury rose by about 34% in the children studied.
  • Cartoon makers are intentionally brainwashing their children by secretly placing messages never to be deciphered by the conscious mind, but instead propagating the subconscious, into behaving a certain way. This practice is known as subliminal messaging.[3]

 

It is clear and evident from the points mentioned above that the dilemma does not lie simply in the content of the cartoon but in the harms concomitant to it as well. It is a basic principle in Islam to keep our distance from anything that may reciprocate harm. Rasulullah Sallallahu ‘Alayhi Wasallam mentioned:

 

لَا ضَرَرَ وَلَا ضِرَارَ

“There should be neither harming nor reciprocating harm.”[4] 

 

These were only the harms confirmed and verified by the scientists. There are many other factors that cartoons contain which Shari’ah deems to by impermissible. Consider the following:

 

  • Music
  • Subliminal messages making the intermingling with the opposite gender seem normal
  • Justification to the exposure of the satr
  • Instilling immorality within one’s self
  • Inculcating the traits and qualities of the Kuffār
  • Wasting time. Time is very precious according to Islam.
  • Promotion of the many evils viewed in the cartoon
  • Offensive language
  • alcohol and drugs
  • Disrespect to the parents, teachers and elders.
  • Vulgarity
  • Violence

 

It is clear from the above; the harms of watching cartoons are too obvious.[5]

 

And Allah Ta’āla Knows Best

AbdulMannan Nizami

Student Darul Iftaa
Chicago, IL, USA 

Checked and Approved by,
Mufti Ebrahim Desai.

www.daruliftaa.net

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Watching TV

 

Q. In my country, most tv programs including news broadcast are being sponsored by alcoholic companies or banks that deal in interest. though i bought my tv and pay my bills myself, is it haram for me to watch the programs because they are being sponsored by haram companies?

 

Answer:

In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.

As-salāmu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullāhi wa-barakātuh.

 

Watching television constitutes great harm and violation of Sharī’ah. Even sports programmes and news readings contain many sinful and prohibited items. Further, the moral and spiritual harms too are evident. Hereunder is an article on the harms of watching television and movies and the rationale behind its prohibition:

 

Watching TV and movies

Watching TV and movies is not permissible according to Islam because TV programmes and movies constitute multiple sins, of which even one would be sufficient to render something impermissible. The heinous effect TV and movies have had globally is as apparent as daylight, and yet those intoxicated by the effects of TV and movies cannot see this. One of the specialities of TV and movies is that it makes even a sensible person deaf, dumb and blind in that he deems permissible and acceptable the evils and sins displayed and promoted by TV and movies that he would normally, without hesitation, declare to be sinful and evil. He lets himself and his family watch and enjoy the evils that he would normally do everything to keep himself and his family away from. Such is the intoxicating effect of TV and movies that it causes all sense of morality and uprightness to go right down the drain. And because of this, families are breaking apart; immorality, lewdness and promiscuity are becoming the order of the day, the youngsters are becoming more disrespectful to their parents and elders, the youngsters and the adults alike are straying further away from the beautiful teachings of Islam and are instead adopting the ways and lifestyle of the immoral people, people are becoming more and more materialistic and are harbouring aversion to religion, and many other heinous acts are taking place that one would feel ashamed to write about. May Allah Ta’ala protect us.

 

Hereunder are some sins that a person commits by watching TV and movies:

 

·        Looking at people of the opposite gender without dire necessity and in a way prohibited by Islam. The Quran

         commands the males and females alike to lower their gazes, and this is not feasible in the case of TV and movies.

 

·        Looking at people who are considered nude in Islam.

 

·        Listening to music. Music is a great sin in Islam.

 

·        Displaying pictures in the house. According to the hadith, pictures prevent angels of mercy from entering the house.

         If there are no angels of mercy in the house, the house will be full of devils.

 

·        Watching and listening to immoral people, thereby, creating admiration for them and their ways. The hadith tells us

         that a person in the life hereafter will be with the ones he loves and admires.

 

·        Watching and listening to things that are forbidden according to Islam, thereby, supporting such forbidden things.

 

·        Wasting time. Time is very precious according to Islam.

 

·        Putting oneself in a state of heedlessness. And because of this heedlessness, many salaats are not offered on time

         or at all.

 

·        Supporting the list of evils mentioned below that TV and movies promote.

 

·        By letting one’s family watch TV and movies, he invites them to commit all of the evils above and below. Therefore,

          instead of inviting them to the teachings of Islam, he invites them to the wrath of Allah. Instead of guiding them to

          paradise, he guides them to the fire of Hell.

 

Not only are TV and movies evil in themselves, they quite boldly and openly promote evil in all its forms. The following are some evils that movies and TV promote indiscriminately that can be observed by any unbiased, sensible and honest person:

 

·        Nudity

·        Promiscuity

·        Intermingling of the genders

·        Profanity

·        Offensive language

·        Taking alcohol and drugs

·        Vulgarity

·        Vanity and arrogance

·        Violence

·        Crime

·        Greed

·        Corruption

·        Dishonesty

·        Atheism

·        Secularism

·        Mockery of religion

·        Disrespect

·        Defiance of authority

·        Disobedience of parents, teachers and elders.

·        Following ones whims and desires indiscriminately.

 

Please remember that the list above is by no means exhaustive.

 

The gist of the above is that a Muslim who fears Allah the Almighty and believes in the Day of Judgement and life after death should stay far away from TV and movies. He should instead spend his free time in things that please Allah Ta’ala such as listening to lectures of the Ulama (scholars), reading the Quran, hadith and Islamic literature, taking part in ilmi and deeni gatherings, etc. In addition, one should take the warnings contained in the following Qur’anic verses seriously:

 

 Translation:

 O you who believe! enter into Islam fully  and do not follow the footsteps of Satan; surely he is your open enemy. (Quran 2:208)

Verily Satan is an enemy to you: so treat him as an enemy. He only invites his adherents that they may become companions of the Blazing Fire. (Quran 35:6)

 

And let not Satan turn you aside. Lo! he is an open enemy for you. (Quran 43:62)

 

The reckoning has drawn near to men, and in heedlessness are they turning aside. (Quran 21:1)

 

O you who believe, save your souls, and those of your families, from the fire whose fuel is men and stones, over which are set angels fierce and terrible; who disobey not Allah in what He has commanded them, but perform what they are commanded. (Quran 66:6)

 

 A poet has pertinently described the evil of letting loose and not controlling ones gaze, and it aptly applies to watching TV and movies:

 

كل الحوادث مبداها من النظر … ومعظم النار من مستصغر الشرر

والمرء ما دام ذا عين يقلبها … في أعين العين موقوف على الخطر

كم نظرة فعلت في قلب فاعلها … فعل السهام بلا قوس ولا وتر

يسر ناظره ما ضر خاطره … لا مرحباً بسرور عاد بالضرر

 

 Translation:

 All evil occurrences begin with ones glance,

And most fires are caught by (negligence of) those who deem sparks insignificant.

A man remains in danger as long as his eyes scrutinize the eyes of (beautiful) women with large (gorgeous) eyes,

How many a glance has done to the heart the same as what an arrow would do — without any bow or string.

The one glancing is pleased with what harms his inner self.

No thanks to pleasure that brings harm.[1]

 

In light of all these harms, it is impermissible to watch television, regardless of whether the programmes have been sponsored by companies dealing in alcohol and interest or not.

 

And Allah Ta’āla Knows Best

Nabeel Valli

Student Darul Iftaa
Lusaka, Zambia

Checked and Approved by,
Mufti Ebrahim Desai.

www.daruliftaa.net

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Hazrat Moulana Yunus Patel Sahib رحمة الله عليه

One of the greatest calamities of our times is the abuse of the camera.

 

In this day and age, with the easy availability of cell-phones, digital cameras, camcorders, etc. everyone seems to be in possession of a tool which has created an upheaval in mischief. How many have had their names dragged through the mud or have been black-mailed, slandered or left humiliated and disgraced due to photographs taken and then circulated?

 

Photography is an evil, which has been entirely misjudged and under-estimated.

 

Just recently, a brother related a dream to me, requesting an interpretation. I interpreted his dream saying: ‘It seems as if movies are being viewed in the Musjid.’

 

Within a matter of days, the interpretation was made apparent. We had a visiting ‘Aalim give a talk in our Musjid. I was sitting on a chair, near the front, when I observed three young boys very absorbed with their cell phones. I requested a friend to go to the back of the Musjid and see what they were up to. He observed that they were viewing some film with dirty, indecent pictures.

إنا لله و إنا إليه راجعون We give our children high-technology at the expense of hayaa (modesty), Deen and Imaan.

One is to have no shame and commit sins in the presence of Allah Ta`ala, but increasing in shamelessness is when one is brazen enough to commit sins in the presence of Allah Ta`ala, whilst in the Musjid, the House of Allah Ta`ala.

 

The same shamelessness is found en-masse in the Musjid of all Masaajid, Musjidul Haraam in Makkah Shareef. The objective of the majority visiting these days, is taking photographs and video recording, instead of engaging in Ibaadah.

 

Complaints – and it is even our experience – of flashes and clicks of the camera, seen or heard, whilst Salaah is in progress or whilst in Tawaaf.

 

There is a very dire need to explain that this is a grave and serious crime in the sight of Allah Ta`ala.

 

What needs to be understood is that photography of anything animate is a clear prohibition. It is haraam.

 

It has been narrated from Hadhrat Jabir (Radiyallahu Anhu) that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) forbade pictures in the house and he forbade making them.

 

Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) said: “Verily, of the most grievously tormented people on the Day of Resurrection are picture-makers.”

There are, in fact, many other Ahaadeeth, which clearly prove this prohibition.

 

Why did Allah Ta`ala prohibit photography?

 

One reason is quite clear; that it was the origin of shirk (polytheism):

Going down the passage of history, we find that mankind was introduced to idol worship due to Shaytaan’s efforts in leading mankind astray. So due to his whispering encouragement, people began to draw and sketch their pious predecessors, thinking that their faces and images will be a source of inspiration; an incentive to also follow in their footsteps of piety. However, it was the means by which many began to worship those pictures, and thereafter carved such idols; and idol worship came into vogue.

 

Whilst this would have been more than sufficient for the Believer, it is no longer considered a worthy reason by Muslims who want to engage in the sin. Many say that there is no way that they would worship a photograph or even a sketch, let alone an idol. My Shaikh, Hadhrat Moulana Hakeem Muhammad Akhtar Sahib دامت بركاته explains that one reason behind the prohibition is so that Allah Ta`ala may protect the respect and dignity of His servants.

 

Many a time, a person who was engaged in various evils is granted hidayah (guidance). Sometimes, this hidayah is such that he attains a high stage of wilayah. The person becomes a great Wali (Friend) of Allah Ta`ala and even a Shaikh, and thousands of people throng to his gatherings. Now at such a time, if someone were to dig up pictures of his past … what embarrassment would he have to endure?

 

From Allah Ta`ala’s side, there is forgiveness of sins, on sincere taubah, to the extent, that all evidence is ‘deleted’ and Insha-Allah, the person will not have to render an account for those sins. However, if photographs were taken, then this is evidence which the person has produced against himself, and which cannot always be destroyed – especially if it is in the hands of others who wish to bring disgrace to the person.maghfirat, qur'an shareef

My Shaikh mentioned the above reason, during an election in Pakistan, where a woman was a candidate in the election. She was blackmailed with photographs of herself in a compromising situation, so that she withdraws.

 

Further to this reason, we find that the porn industry and filthy films are all based on pictures. Islam nips the problem in the bud by prohibiting photography.

 

If everyone practiced upon this teaching, we would not have pornography, woman abuse and exploitation, child pornography, and the evil consequences of rape, insanity, suicide, incest, etc., much of which has shattered and devastated the marriages and homes of many Muslims.

Now thinking over all these harms, we should appreciate the prohibition all the more and show that appreciation by abstaining. There is nothing but great wisdom in the prohibitions of Allah Ta`ala, with nothing but good for His servants.

 

The opinion of Hadhrat Moulana Yusuf Binnori رحمة الله عليه on television

During the last meeting of the Pakistan Islamic Council that Allamah Yusuf Binnori رحمة الله عليه attended, Hadhrat was asked to appear on television. He declined. Later Hadhrat was asked whether films could be used for the propagation of Deen, provided that all immorality and factors that destroy character are removed. Upon this, Hadhrat Moulana رحمة الله عليه expounded on a principle of Deen, the gist of which is:

“I wish to share with you a principle issue. We have not been obligated by Allah Ta’ala to use every possible means, whether permissible or impermissible, for the tableegh of Deen. Instead, we are required to use all our energies and resources to propagate Deen only using permissible means and methods.

 

Together with the injunction of tableegh, Islam has also laid down guidelines and principles for tableegh. We are thus obligated to conduct our tableegh within this framework.

 

If we are successful in our efforts after following the guidelines and principles, then indeed, we have achieved our ultimate goal and objective. If our efforts were unfruitful, but we had adopted the permissible methods and means, we will not be compelled to further our tableegh by using every possible and available means, be it permissible or impermissible.

 

If even one person is blessed with guidance after using the permissible means, then undoubtedly our tableegh was successful. However, if on the other hand, scores and droves of people embrace Islam on account of us adopting impermissible methods and means, then this holds no value in the sight of Allah Ta’ala.

 

How can success ever be achieved when we have transgressed the bounds of Shari‘ah? Rather than it being the tableegh of Deen, it would be the tableegh of something else.

 

Photography inherently contradicts the injunctions of Islam. Therefore, we will not be compelled to utilise it as a tool for tableegh. If a person is prepared to accept Islam through our invitation via permissible methods and means, then we will definitely be grateful and pleased. However, for those who are not prepared to do so and wish to accept our invitation only by means of the television, then we regret that we will have to be excused.

 

If this stance is not adopted today, then the television will be a tool for tableegh now, but in time to come, be-hijaab (unveiled) women would be used for this purpose, and an effort will be made to use immoral gatherings of music and dancing, etc., to invite people to Deen.

 

In this way, in the name of tableegh we will be guilty of gradually violating the laws of Islam.”

 

(Article written by Mufti Taqi Saheb in the kitaab "Muhadditul Asr Hazrat Moulana Muhammad Yusuf Binnori (Rahmatullah Alayh) P.g. 91, Nuqoosh-e-Raftagaa, P.g 104)

 

Fatwa of Moulana Yusuf Ludhyaanwi رحمة الله عليه

Hadhrat Moulana Yusuf Ludhyaanwi رحمة الله عليه writes:

Although the photos captured by video or television equipment are not visible (like a normal printed picture), but they are stored, and displayed on a television set.

 

These pictures cannot be excluded from the hukm of tasweer.

 

The most that can be said is that instead of the olden method of picture-making, technological advancement has brought about a new means of picture-making.

 

When Shari‘ah has declared picture-making  as haraam, then no matter which methods or means are invented, Tasweer will remain haraam.

The humble of opinion of this servant is that in hand-drawn pictures those evil are not found which are found in video and tv… because of the television and videos every home has been transformed into a cinema…

 

Does this make sense that on the one hand Shari‘ah declares hand-drawn pictures as haraam, and the picture maker as mal’oon and warns him of “ashad-dun naasi azaaban yowmal qiyaamah”, but on the other hand declares Halaal this ‘storm of immorality and indecency’ known as TV?

As for the claim made by some that there is some benefit therein, so I ask:

 

“Are there no benefits in intoxicants, pork, interest and gambling?” But the Qur’aan Shareef has put a cross on all these benefits by announcing “wa ithmuhumaa akbaru min naf'ihimaa”.

 

Some say that through TV and videos we will propagate and spread Islam.

 

In our country there are Deeni programmes on TV, but, with due respect, may I ask:

How many non-muslims have accepted Islam by viewing these Deeni programmes?

How many bê-namaazi’s began performing Salaat because of these programmes?

How many sinners have made taubah because of these programmes?

 

This is nothing but deception.

This instrument of immorality and sin, which is ‘najisul ayn’ from head to toe, which is mal’oon, the one who makes it is mal’oon in Dunya and Akhirat, how will it assist in spreading Deen?….

 

As for those who say that so-and-so says this and so-and-so does that, this is not a daleel of jawaaz (permissibility) for us.

Wallahu a’lam

 

(Moulana) Muhammad Yusuf

20 Zhul Qa’dah 1406

(Mufti) Ihsaanullah Shaa’iq, Darul Iftaa wal Irshaad, Naazimabad, Karachi 16 jumaadal Ukhraa 1425

Al Jawaab Saheeh  (Mufti) Muhammad  16/06/1425

Al Jawaab Saheeh (Mufti) Saeedullah  16/06/1425

 

Opinion of Hadhrat Moulana Yunus Patel Saheb رحمة الله عليه regarding the influence of television

One of the many Sunnats of the Ambiyaa عليهم السلام is that of hayaa – shame and modesty: a quality which is sorely missing in the lives of the majority of Muslims today and which should otherwise be an outstanding characteristic and feature of all Muslims, whether married or unmarried.

Television is such an evil that if our society only understood its reality, then they would find no excuse to watch. Its spiritual harm is that it takes away the hayaa and shame of our men, women and children.

 

The content of most television programmes is nothing but immodesty and indecency, which invites nothing but immodesty and indecency – into our homes, into our lives and the lives of our children.

 

However, this truth and reality seems to just pass over the understanding of even those Muslims who have some link with Deen. Many are regular with Salaah, they are seen in the Musjid, they are wearing the garb of the pious and yet they will be the ones to present flimsy and feeble excuses to view television programmes.

 

Let us consider this situation of sin from the following view – which Alhamdulillah, has been a means of many getting rid of the television.

  • If a person has to knock on your door and tell you: ‘I would like to use your lounge to commit adultery.’
  • Or a group of some friends have to request you: ‘We would like to use your home to gamble and enjoy our liquor.’
  • Or a group of youngsters have to tell you: ‘We have chosen your home as a venue for our partying, dancing, drug-taking and fornicating.’
  • Or a Christian family has to request you: ‘We would like to use your home as a venue for our church ceremony. The marriage of our daughter as well as the baptism of our grandchild. We have already obtained the consent of one of our priests.’
  • Or some idol-worshippers have to suggest: ‘We would like to carry out some of our religious rites in your home. We would like to bring our idols also. You are more than welcome to observe or participate in our rites. ’

Many Muslims, on hearing such requests, will get very angry; will express disgust – if not swear and curse such suggestions.

 

However, these very same Muslims who will even resort to swearing and cursing such proposals, invite into their homes all of the above by the switch of the television, by hiring English and Hindi films and DVDs and downloading porn and other films from the internet. There is so much of adultery, partying and other filth that we seem to just welcome into our homes – least realizing the consequences.

 

Just to give you one example and this is but the tip of the iceberg – and it is said with the intention of removing the blindfold that most parents wear:

A father of four children mentioned to me that he had got rid of his television and he thereafter explained why. He said that late one night he heard strange noises from his children’s room. On opening the door of their room, he found their television switched on. […This is our concept of modesty: parents must have their own television, to view all kinds of filthy programmes in their privacy, and children must have their own television to view all kinds of indecency in their privacy (Na’oozu Billah).]

 

The father mentioned that there were dirty and obscene scenes of naked people on the television screen. He mentioned that it was filthy and that it shocked him; but what had him even more shaken was that his children were all undressed, engaging in the same kind of indecent acts. They were imitating the pornography they were viewing. He said himself, that until then he had not considered the harm of television. It took this kind of incident to wake him up. …This is just one example of so many. Do we wish to face something similar?

 

…Do we care to even know what our sons and daughters are doing in the secrecy of their rooms? The fact that many demand that no one ‘invade’ their space and privacy to the extent of having ‘No Entry’ signs on their doors, should have parents a little more than worried…  especially if they are viewing television and are surfing the net or have free access with cell phones.

 

Many have written, that after watching certain films or programmes, the desire came strongly into their hearts to take drugs, drink liquor, murder their parents, indulge in homosexuality, engage in adulterous relationships, commit suicide, rape, and so much else – and many of them do so.

 

Moreover, with sins like television and evil, lustful glancing, Allah Ta’ala removes the love between husband and wife and even ones children become disobedient.

 

There are many husbands who entertain thoughts of and fantasize of other women when with their wives. And they will when they are watching different actresses and television presenters. Many wives are guilty of the same infidelity having seen or socialized with ghair-mahaarim. Many women are so infatuated and obsessed with some soccer player or cricket player that they become dissatisfied with their husbands, and spend their time fantasizing.

Had the person not viewed all those ghair-mahaarim on the television screen and computer screen, and had lowered his gaze in real life situations, then he would not have desired that which he cannot have, and there would not have been dissatisfaction with his (or her) spouse.

 

Moreover we complain: There is no barkat in our homes; there is no barkat in our wealth; there is no barkat in our time. Our children are rebellious. The husband is having an extra-marital relationship. The daughter has accepted Christianity. The son is on drugs … and the list of complaints does not end.

Then who is to blame except the one who brought all of this haraam into the home by purchasing the television and exposing the family to so much of sin.

…Great Ulama became bay’at upon the hands of Moulana Hakeem Fakhrudeen رحمة الله عليه. He mentioned that there was a time, that with the rising and setting of the sun, he saw nothing but noor in Surat. The atmosphere was one of noor. The day commenced with Salaah, Tilaawat, Zikrullah…

After the cinemas and television and videos flooded Surat, there was nothing but ‘zulmat’ – darkness. With the distraction of such entertainment, Ibaadah becomes a forgotten duty.

 

One Wali of Allah Ta’ala, on visiting a home, mentioned that he perceived the sin of Zina (adultery) from the walls of that home. He was able to recognize this due to the purity of his heart. The residents of that home were not indulging in adultery but they were watching the sin on television.

 

When fire burns against a white wall, it blackens the wall. The Ahle-Dil, with their purified hearts, see the fire of sins which has burnt and blackened the white hearts of the Muslims.

 

We should take lesson and take measures to protect ourselves and our children.

 

 Cartoons and films portraying Ambiyaa عليهم السلام and Sahabah (Radiyallahu Anhum)

 

Q: What is the Islamic ruling regarding cartoons or films portraying stories of the Ambiyaa عليهم السلام or the Sahaabah? In today’s times, these types of films are available in the market and are widespread on the internet.

 

A: Before addressing the issue in question, it is vital for us to understand a few preliminary aspects in order that the issue be understood in correct perspective.

 

The purpose for acquiring Islamic knowledge is that one may find the correct direction in reaching Allah Ta’ala. Knowledge in itself is not the goal; rather it is a medium that leads one to the goal. The goal is practising on the laws of Sharee’ah in accordance to the manner prescribed by Allah and His Rasul (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam). If the knowledge one acquires does not lead one to the goal, then in reality this is not worthy of being called Islamic knowledge. Perhaps it could be called information. Hence, the pertinent question one needs to pose is, what is Islamic knowledge and how should one go about acquiring this knowledge?

 

In order for the knowledge which one acquires to be acceptable in the sight of Allah Ta’ala and sanctioned by Sharee’ah, it is necessary that certain aspects be adhered to:

 

The first aspect is the aspect of authenticity and reliability. Extreme caution should be exercised in sourcing Deeni knowledge. One should ensure that he refers to reliable, qualified Ulama in the pursuit of seeking Islamic knowledge. Similarly, the material one exposes himself to in the course of seeking education, should be sourced from authentic and reliable sources. If one acquired his knowledge from unauthentic sources or unreliable personalities, then obviously the overall picture of Deen which one will obtain will certainly not conform to the pure and pristine brand of Islam. Concoctions, adulterations and distortions would be noticed in various aspects of his Deen. This will be grossly due to the fact that he had not sourced his knowledge from those authentic, reliable sources approved by Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam). The disastrous outcome of acquiring knowledge through these channels is that Islam will be reduced to customs and rituals which will change with the fashions and the norms of the time. The great Taabi’ee Muhammed bin Sireen رحمة الله عليه has said:

 

إنَّ هَذَا الْعِلمَ دِينٌ ، فَانْظُرُوا عَمَّنْ تَأَخُذُونَ دِينَكُمْ (الشمائل للترمذي رقم 415)

Certainly this knowledge that you are acquiring is your Deen, hence you should ensure that you acquire your Deen from authentic and reliable people.

 

The second aspect is the means through which the knowledge is acquired. It is incumbent that permissible means be adopted in acquiring Islamic knowledge. The method one adopts should conform to the method adopted during the Mubaarak era of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam), the Sahaabah and the Khairul Quroon (the glorious era of the Taabi’een and Tab’ut Taabi’een). If one adopts a haraam means to acquire Islamic knowledge, this will be unacceptable in the sight of Allah Ta’ala and such information will be bereft of the true noor of Deen. Thus such knowledge will not lead one to the pleasure of Allah Ta’ala and enable one to uphold the pillars of Islam.

 

The third aspect is adopting the Sunnah approach when acquiring the knowledge of Deen. The Sunnah approach is to show the highest level of respect and honour to everything related to Deen (viz. The Quraan, the Ahaadith, the Ambiyaa, the Sahaabah, the Ulama, the symbols of Islam, etc.) as well as conforming to all the aadaab (etiquettes) of Deen. When Islamic knowledge is acquired in this manner, adhering to the way shown to us by Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) and adopting the etiquettes of Islam, one will witness the true spirit of Deen coming alive in the lives of the believers. The books of Hadith are replete with many glaring examples which illustrate the Sunnah method adopted by the Sahaabah and the Tabi’een in the pursuit of acquiring the knowledge of Deen. When the knowledge of Deen in reality is the knowledge of Nubuwwat and those who tread on this path to acquire it are honoured with the title of “The heirs of the Ambiyaa”, one could well imagine the great need for one to adopt the outer as well as inner qualities of the Ambiyaa. In other words, one should not confine knowledge to word or action; instead one should endeavour to cultivate the very spirit and noor of the knowledge in all respects. Acquiring such knowledge under the guidance of the true men of Allah Ta’ala who acquired this from their seniors and so forth and so on with an unbroken chain linking up to Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) produces an indelible impression on the hearts of people, thereby motivating the true love within people to emulate the Mubaarak Sunnah of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) in all facets of life.

 

How did the people of the past acquire Deeni Knowledge?

 

Hereunder are two examples which will shed light on the method of how the people of the past acquired Islamic knowledge.

 

Hadhrat Abdullah bin Abbas (Radiyallahu Anhuma) says:

"After the passing away of Nabi (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam), I said to an Ansaari friend of mine, ‘Nabi (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) is no longer with us, but a large number of the Sahaabah are still present among us. Hence, let us go to them in the pursuit of Islamic knowledge.’ He said, 'What is the need to acquire `ilm whereas these eminent Sahaabah are present? Who will approach you to enquire of any deeni mas’alah whilst these great men are amongst us?'” Hadhrat Ibnu Abbas (Radiyallahu Anhuma) further mentioned, “I was not in any way discouraged by his words. Rather, I kept up my quest for knowledge and began approaching every Sahaabi who had heard something from Nabi (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam). In this way, I managed to gather a substantial amount of ‘ilm from the Ansaar. If on my visit to any Sahaabi, I found him resting, I spread my shawl at the entrance of his home and remained seated awaiting his emergence. At times, my face and entire body would get covered with dust, however, this did not cause me to desist from my endeavour and I continued to remain seated there anxiously awaiting their emergence.

 

I thus carried on my pursuits, till there came a time when people began to flock to me for learning the knowledge of Deen. My Ansaari friend realised this at that time and remarked, 'This person has surely proved himself to be more intelligent than all of us.’”

 

A student of Hadith once came as a guest to Imaam Ahmad bin Hambal رحمة الله عليه. It was the sublime conduct of the Imaam that he presented water to the student when going to bed. He placed it close to the student so that he may use it for wudhu at the time of Tahajjud. The following morning the Imaam noticed the water untouched. Hence he exclaimed: “Subhaanallah! A student of knowledge, yet he does not perform tahajjud during the night!” Imaam Ahmad رحمة الله عليه indicated to this fact that the knowledge one acquires should motivate him towards upholding the Mubaarak Sunnah of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) in his life.

 

Why is it impermissible to acquire Deeni knowledge through viewing cartoons and films?

 

Based on the above, after closely examining the issue of acquiring knowledge through viewing cartoons and films which outwardly portray Islamic information, one will realise that this means of acquiring knowledge does not conform to the above mentioned Islamic method of acquiring Islamic knowledge. Furthermore, acquiring Islamic knowledge through this means is impermissible due to the following reasons:

 

  1. This means of acquiring ‘ilm is impermissible in Sharee’ah as it directly opposes the command of Allah Ta’ala and His Rasul (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam). Nabi (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) had sounded severe warnings in his Mubaarak Ahaadith for those who have any involvement in picture making. Hence, propagating Islam via this means is impermissible.

 

إن أشد الناس عذابا عند الله يوم القيامة المصورون (صحيح البخاري 2/880 ، صحيح لمسلم 2/201)

 

Those involved in picture-making will be subjected to the worst forms of punishment on the day of Qiyaamat. (Bukhaari 2/880, Muslim 2/201)

 

  1. In many of these films men and women are seen together. This opposes the law of Sharee’ah in regard to segregation between na-mahram males and females. Hence, this type of enactment, instead of creating an Islamic effect, it only destroys the fabric of Deen through inciting one towards sin.
  2. The actors in these films are portraying illustrious personalities such as the Ambiyaa or Sahaabah etc. This enactment is in itself deception, as the onlookers will begin to base their opinions of Ambiyaa and Sahaabah through the actions of these sinful people. To add insult to injury, the film being videoed is impermissible in Islam. Hence they are trying to propagate Deen through portraying the lives of these illustrious personalities while being involved in such a grave sin.
  3. Propagating Islam through this medium degrades the position of these illustrious personalities and reduces Deen to a thing of entertainment. Furthermore, this will lead to the masses beginning to regard these so called “Islamic movies” as a substitute to Hollywood and Bollywood movies.
  4. Presently the Kuffaar are using this as a means to distort and adulterate the Deen of Islam. Muslims should not be so gullible to fall into the traps and the nets of the Kuffaar. It has been proven that many of these films shattered the Imaan and beliefs of many Muslims and created suspicions and doubts in their Deen.
  5. Portraying these great personalities via cartoon characters causes great disrespect to these saintly personalities. How can Deen come alive in the Ummah when gross disrespect is shown to those who were responsible for bringing Deen alive in the world?
  6. The outcome of such plays, films, cartoons etc. is in reality making a mockery of the august Deen of Allah Ta’ala and the illustrious men of Islam. Similarly, those who view these types of films will be viewed as supporters and promoters of this sin in the sight of Allah Ta’ala.
  7. Lastly, the kitaabs of Aqaaid have recorded that if people enact a play for entertainment purposes where one person assumes the position of a great Aalim or Mufti, and people refer Deeni issues to him, and laugh at him and make a mockery of him, all present on account of showing disrespect to Deen will come out of the fold of Islam. Hence, the outcome of viewing these cartoons, films, etc. is extremely destructive and detrimental to one’s Imaan.

 

We make Duaa to Allah Ta’ala to bless the Ummah at large with the true love and respect for Deen and the symbols of Deen, and enable us to emulate the Mubaarak Sunnah of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) in our lives.

 

ihyauddeen

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