"If I were not a Muslim, I would have
contacted AIDS!" proclaimed my friend. "The ayahs in Sura Nur about lowering our
gazes doesn't affect me anymore", expressed another youth, talking about the
intense temptations felt by today's youth. Difficulty in lowering the gaze by
both the young and old is readily perceived on the street, weddings, parties and
even in the Masjids.
What has gone wrong with our Ummah? Us Muslims, called by Allah, our Creator, as
the best Ummah, Model Community, custodians of Truth and the Upholders of
Morality behaving in this way? Why are we adopting the attitudes and routes of
the Kuffar? How can we rectify ourselves?
What follows are a series of practical, though graphic advice which can work for
us and set us free from Satan's stronghold, insha Allah.
Prophet Muhammad, Sallallhu alayhi wa sallam, by way of warning and as a
reminder said: "I have not left a fitnah (trial, calamity or cause for calamity)
after me more than (the fitnah) with women for men" (Bukhari and Muslim). Also
was related by our Prophet : "The world is sweet and verdant, and Allah having
put you in it in your turn watches how you act; so fear the world and fear
women, for the first trial of the Bani israel had to do with women" (Muslim)
Being optimistic, a ray of hope was also wisely provided during Prophet's Last
Sermon on way to avoid the above pitfall: "If the Ummah hold on to the Quran and
the Sunnah, it will not go astray".
When Allah created us humans will all the desires and urges, He also revealed to
us sufficient and complete guidance to contain them through proper channels. All
we need to do is seek this guidance, contemplate on it and implement it. "This
day I have perfected you deen for you, completed my favors upon you and chosen
Islam as your deen" (5:3)
Realize the fact that the great Sahabas were humans beings too. Biologically
they were no different from us, they too had desires and temptations of the
human species, and yet they controlled them in the best of ways. We can too,
insha Allah. To posses sensual passions is Human, to control them is Muslim.
When confronted with a luring situation, like passing by a non-mahram on the
street, office, or a school, Satan is constantly tempting us to glare at her
with evil thoughts. Satan is probably excitingly saying with a big smile `Yes',
`Yes', `Yes', when we steer into the bait he is setting. During these situations
immediately and consciously realize that when we give a second or following
glances, we are obeying Satan. "O you who believe, follow not the footsteps of
the devil..." (24:21). By immediately averting our gazes and disobeying Satan,
we are giving him a one two punch in the face which leaves him frustrated,
accursed and defeated.
Satan rebelled and was expelled by Allah, so lets all rebel against Satan and
expel him from our hearts. Satan intents to fight a war against the believers,
so lets gather our forces behind Quran and Sunnah and defeat him.
Remember that even if no human eye is watching us, the ever watchful Allah is
constantly monitoring the innermost regions of our heart. Our eyes, limbs,
tongue and private parts will all be witnesses for or against us on the Day of
Judgement and not an atoms worth of our deeds will remain unexamined.
Psychologically our minds are conditioned to associate our thoughts of stealing
clothes from a store to being in handcuffs and hauled into a police van.
Likewise, we should condition our minds to bring the verses of Surah Nur in
front of our eyes during any tempting situation and imagine that during that
particular instance Allah (SWT) is speaking to us directly: "Say to the
believing men that they should lower their gaze and guard their modesty, that
will make for greater purity for them...Say to the believing women that they
should lower their gaze and guard their modesty...O you believers! Turn you all
together towards Allah that you may attain success" (24:30,31). What a beautiful
guidance and what a sublime reward for implementing it.
With practice, the above associations and the remembrance of Allah during
tempting situations will prevent us from getting stuck by devilish arrows.
Successful controlling our gazed also depends upon our avoidance of sinful
situations. Al Islamic idiom (Usul Al-Fiqh) says: "Anything that leads to haram
is haram in itself". Therefore cutting any unlawful situation in their bud is
what we should strive for. Performance of a pious deed is rewarded and avoidance
of a sinful deed is also rewarded, Al-Hamdulillah.
One of the biggest culprits which encourage us to disobey the ayahs in Surah
Nur, are the movies. In the name of entertainment, to please our peers and
children and as an excuse to do something together as a family, we astonishingly
allow the development of un-Islamic scenes and dialogues in front of our eyes.
Can we ever imagine (Na'udubillah) any Sahaba renting the latest hit from
Blockbuster videos, or listening to music with luring lyrics at high volume?
Likewise, we watch news on TV and stare at the anchorwomen, female gymnasts, and
female swimmers who are scantly dressed. Prophet Muhammad, sallallahu alayhi wa
sallam, was once approached by a women with a proposal for marriage. He took a
single glance at her and turned his face way. Jabir bin Abdullah reported: "I
asked Allah's messenger about the sudden glance on the face of a non-Mahram. He
commanded me that I should turn away my eyes" (Muslim). Thus we are not suppose
to stare at the faces of non-Mahrams of opposite gender, be they our fellow
students, elders, saleswomen or the one of TV.
Pious ladies of the Prophet's household were even ordered to do purdah in front
of a Blind Sahaba. Upon the curious question as to why purdah when the blind
Sahaba can't see them, Prophet wisely replies: "But you could see him" (Ahmed,
Trimidhi, Abu Dawood)
Each one of us may have become culprit of not obey the ayahs in Surah Nur. It is
not too late to realize these short comings and work at rectifying ourselves.
Above all, we should always ask forgiveness of Allah (SWT). Indeed blessed are
those Muslims who are able to check their gazes, thus conserving their precious
time and energy, and working in the cause of Allah to reclaim our positions as
the superpowers of the world.
Let's contemplate on the above humble advises and constantly make the following
supplication: "O Allah help us in controlling our sensual desires until we get
married, and after our marriage, let our desires be only towards our