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Are we going beyond the limits without even realizing it?

Sikander Ziad Hashmi, sunniforum.com

A few weeks ago, Montreal hosted the Formula One Canadian Grand Prix. That week-end, my parents and I were heading west on the highway, and many of the race fans who had come from out of town were sharing the roads with us on their way back home.

One thing really caught my attention, more than anything else: almost every single one of these race fans was driving extremely fast and was zipping by us, as if they themselves were race drivers competing in a Formula One race.

I found this to be interesting because here were the race fans, after only a few hours at the racetrack, already acting like racecar drivers. The point being that only a few hours in the racing environment (without even actually racing) had such a profound effect on them that its effect was showing in their actions.

By just being around racecars driving around 300 km/h, driving fast had become a second nature of sorts for these fans.

This clearly shows the potential effects that the environment can have on a person’s thinking as well as actions.

We all know that we’re members of a decaying society. Morality, decency, modesty, and the sense of the shame are in a freefall, and things are progressively getting worse. Immorality and indecency are at an all time high.

All this is very evident. It’s not hard to tell, especially in the summer. Just head downtown and you’ll notice the billboards on the highway, take a stroll at the mall, watch a few commercials on TV, take in a movie or two, and you’ll be faced with stuff that’s nowhere near being decent or modest.

So basically, indecency and immodesty are rampant these days. And the worst part? We live in the midst of it, and are faced with this stuff day-in and day-out.

Unfortunately, the environment around us is bound to have some sort of effect on us. Just like those race fans at the Grand Prix got accustomed to speeding, we can easily become immune to indecency and immodesty, and used to seeing it all.

In fact, it IS so easy to get used to, and that’s an extremely dangerous thing, because all this indecency and immodesty is clearly against the moral fabric of Islam. After all, modesty is a branch of faith.

Abu Hurairah (RA) narrated that the Prophet (may peace be upon him) said: Iman has over seventy branches, and modesty is a branch of Iman. (Reported by Muslim)

The Quran is very clear on seeing that which one shouldn’t be seeing.

Tell the believing men to lower their gaze (from looking at forbidden things)… (Quran; 24:30)

And tell the believing women to lower their gaze (from looking at forbidden things)…(Quran; 24:31)

Jarir bin 'Abdullah (RA) reported: I asked Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) about the sudden glance (that is cast) on the face (of a non-Mahram). He commanded me that I should turn away my eyes. (Reported by Muslim)

The following, from Bukhari, is especially notable for us:

Sa`eed ibn Abu Hasan said to Hasan (RA): the non-Arab women bare their chests and heads (so what should I do)? The Prophet (SAW) said: turn away your eyes.

In situations where we have no choice, we can’t do much. But in cases where we do have a choice, it is our duty to stay away, no matter how tempting it may be.

The danger is that we can easily become so accustomed to indecency and immorality that we don’t even realize that we are seeing something forbidden, and as a result, we knowingly go and see things we clearly shouldn’t be seeing.

So before we walk into a movie theatre, attend that social function, gaze at those billboards, flip through that magazine, chill at the beach, surf the Net, or spend an evening in front of the TV, let’s try to make a moment to ask ourselves, “are we going beyond the limits without even realizing it?”

The bottom line is, every single little thing we do (good or bad) is recorded, and will be brought before us on the Day of Judgement.

And whosoever does evil equal to the weight of an atom (or a small ant), shall see it. (Quran; 8:99)

May Allah save us from becoming immune to indecency and immorality, and may He help us in differentiating right from wrong. Ameen.



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