Immodesty in Islamic Perspective
Mawlana Muhammad Rahmatullah Mir Qasmi.
Translated into English by:
باسمه سبحانه و تعالى
Islamic laws depict and represent the human nature. A Muslim ought to abide by these laws which Allah Ta’ala has decreed on him through the last and the final Prophet—Hadhrat Muhammad Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam). Allah Ta’ala says in the Holy Qur’an:
تِلْكَ حُدُودُ اللَّهِ فَلَا تَعْتَدُوهَا وَمَنْ يَتَعَدَّ حُدُودَ اللَّهِ فَأُولَئِكَ هُمُ الظَّالِمُونَ
These are the limits set by Allah. Therefore, do not exceed them. Whosoever exceeds the limits set by Allah, then, those are the transgressors. (2:229)
There is a tremendous difference between human beings and animals. The animals do not possess well developed frontal lobe of the brain. Even the gigantic animals, if you observe, have very small frontal bone. The area of civilization is placed in the frontal lobe of the brain. Below the frontal lobe, there is emotional centre which is controlled by the frontal lobe. When a human being looks at an opposite sex, a natural emotional reaction arouses in him. Being a human, he first controls his emotions and then channelizes them. On the other hand, animals do not have well developed area of civilization and the frontal lobe, hence they are swayed by their emotions. The animals just cannot control their emotions.
Unfortunately, nowadays the human values have degraded to the extent that these animal instincts have been given the name of ‘modern civilization’. Almost everyone may have witnessed that when a dog sees a bitch, it is unable to control its emotions and fulfils its passion even on the roadside. Similar is the case of today’s so-called human being, who gets swayed by the emotions, does not use his area of civilization and fulfils his bestial desire anywhere, may be even on the roadside like a dog, and ironically, he is considered ‘modern, civilized, liberal and what not’. On the other hand, if someone controls his emotions and behaves like a true human being, he is labeled as ‘conservative, backward and orthodox’.
It is need of the hour to educate Ummat-i-Muslimah in particular and the world in general about this moral degradation and its harmful effects. It is high time for Muslims to realize the importance of Islamic teachings and act accordingly thereby save themselves and their families from the Hell fire.
Mawlana Muhammad Rahmatullah Sahib has taken lot of pains in collecting the Qur’anic verses and numerous statements of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam), and described in a very lucid and detailed manner the evil effects of these animal instincts like obscenity, illegal sexual relations, sodomy etc.
Dear Sameem Husain has done a wonderful job in translating this book into English.
May Allah Ta’ala accept this endeavour of Mawlama Muhammad Rahmatullah Sahib and Mr. Sameem Husain, and make it highly beneficial for the Ummah.
Dr. Rafiq Ahmad.
5th August, 2007.
Darul Uloom Ilaahiyah,
باسمه سبحانه و تعالى
It is narrated in a Hadith that once a person offered himself for cure to his ailment before the Holy Prophet (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) and complained about his hard-heartedness. The Prophet (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) (who is the ‘loving spiritual doctor’ of this Ummah) said:
امسح رأس اليتيم و أطعم المساكين
“Caress the head of an orphan and feed the poor”
This highly skilled and the most loving savant of Ummah treated all the spiritual ailments (about which the Sahaaba (RA) asked from time to time) of the faithful and chaste Sahaaba. So to say that it was established that a slave of Allah should never become unmindful towards his physical and spiritual ailments until the day of Qiyamah, but should always think about his treatment and get advice and suggestions from a skilled spiritual doctor and then work on them, so that Allah cures him. This has been termed by some as Tazkiyah while by others as Ahsaan and Sulook or Tasawwuf. Since it is a constituent of Deen (the religion of Islam), it will, like other constituents, continue to persist until the day of Qiyaamah and it has been stressed upon the Ummah to remain in touch with the experts of this field so that they might get reformed in this world and thus obtain the treasure of Sidq (truth) and Purity. It is this eloquent truth that has been stated by the Mufassireen of the Holy Qur’an under the verse:
يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا اتَّقُوا اللَّهَ وَكُونُوا مَعَ الصَّادِقِينَ
You who believe! be careful of (your duty to) Allah and be with the true ones. (9:119)
In the present era, the grand Ulema of Deoband (may Allah elevate their status) have been bestowed upon by Allah with the great treasure that on one hand they have the honour to teach the book (al-Qur’an) and wisdom and on the other hand carry out the job of Tazkiyaah and Ahsaan, and this is still continuing.
Hadhrat Faqeehul Ummat Ja’mai Shariat and Tareeqat Mawlana Mufti Mahmood Hasan Gangohi (RA) was once while sitting in Chattah Masjid, Deoband after the Asr prayer Majlis (assembly), replying to the letters that he had received. At that time Hadhrat was of very frail age, so Khadim (attendant) was narrating these letters to him and Hadhrat after listening to them used to dictate the reply. In these letters, on one hand, the questions related to Fiqh (since Hadhrat was of the status of grand Mufti and his high level of comprehension was an admitted fact) were asked and on the other hand a good number of queries were related to the reformation of exterior as well as interior-self.
In one of the letters received, a person while expressing extreme uneasiness and impatience had written that he usually gets indulged in the acts of immodesty. Hadhrat advised him to perform Tawbah and from among other treatments, he was also advised to go through the warnings and chastisements that have been mentioned in the Qur’an and Hadith regarding these issues that such and such chastisement has been mentioned for such sins. He was also advised to repeatedly read these until they get engraved in his memory. It was expected that by doing so it will become easy for him to save himself.
While writing the reply to this letter, all of a sudden it came to my mind that this disease is rampant nowadays and how good and beneficial it would have been for those in need to have all the material available in a single booklet comprising Aayaat and Ahaadith on this issue. It would have been easy to publish such a booklet if available and make it widespread. When a disease spreads, it becomes necessary to formulate its widespread treatment. I looked for such a booklet but couldn’t find one and finally it came to my mind that I should personally compile a concise booklet of chosen Aayaat and Ahaadith on this issue. Therefore, on reaching Darul Uloom Raheemiya, I requested dear Hafiz Sajjad (may Allah keep him safe) to collect Aayaat from the Holy Qur’an related to the subject, he did it in a single day and handed them over to me on a sheet of paper. Now, as I started to follow the exegesis and commentary of these Aayaat as well as the related Ahaadith, I was able to pen down only a few pages in a year or so due to numerous engagements, but the job had started. The time kept passing by and this manuscript always remained with me in my bag and sometimes during journeys I could only add up few lines to it. At that time I had the idea that when this booklet gets completed, it would be brought before Hadhrat Mufti Mahmmod Hasan Gangohi (RA) and I will try to reorganize it in a better and more beneficial shape as per his valuable directions. But due to my own laziness, inadequacy and innumerable engagements it didn’t happen like that until Hadhrat Mufti Sahib (RA) became the traveler of eternal abode. إنا لله و إنا إليه راجعون . In gone past years, I was able to get some free time during few of my journeys and somehow I completed the booklet and handed it over to Mufti Farhat Ahmad (may Allah keep him safe) for final drafting. After proof-reading, by the will of Allah, the corrected version was lost from the computer and this way another year passed by. Then dear Mufti Sajjad Husain, who is undergoing the course on specialization of Hadith at Mazaahirul Uloom, Saharanpur, and who had come to his home on vacations, made efforts to get this manuscript computerized again by the help of Almighty Allah. After that, without waiting for any kind of addition, the booklet was sent for publication.
May Allah (SWT) safely guide it through different stages of publication and make it beneficial and a source of salvation for the Ummah especially to this sinful believer. و ما ذالك على الله بعزيز.
Darul Uloom Raheemiya.
13 Safarul Muzaffar, 1423.
Immodesty in Islamic Perspective
نحمد و نصلي على رسوله الكريم أما بعد
Islam is the religion of nature and it wants to see a person in an extremely pure, modest and righteous state. That is why it made pure and nice things lawful for a person and impure and malignant ones as unlawful. The Islamic Shariah desires the attributes of modesty and chastity in a person and at the same time it regards immodesty and wickedness as odious. It has considered the adultery as an extreme level of immodesty. Allah Ta’ala says in Qur’an:
وَلَا تَقْرَبُوا الزِّنَى إِنَّهُ كَانَ فَاحِشَةً وَسَاءَ سَبِيلًا
And come not near unto adultery. Lo! it is an abomination and an evil way. (17:32)
Hadhrat Hakeem-ul-Ummah Mawlana Thanvi (RA), while commenting on this Aayat writes:
And do not come near to adultery i.e., near its domains and elements and without any doubt it is immodesty in itself and also a very evil way in comparison to other immoralities because it serves as a basis for enmity, ordeals and perished lineage. (Bayanul Qur’an)
Adultery has been prohibited because of two reasons, first—it is immodesty and if a human being is immodesty, he gets deprived of humanity and loses his capability to differentiate between right and wrong. This has been mentioned in a Hadith as:
إِذَا لَمْ تَسْتَحِي فَافْعَلْ مَا شِئْتَ (بخاري)
“When your modesty goes on reducing (and there remains no veil of hindrance in between you and immorality), then do whatever you wish”. (Bukhari)
And that is why by saying:
ألحياء من الإيمان (بخاري)
“Modesty is a branch of Imaan” (Bukhari)
Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) regarded modesty as an important branch of Imaan.
The second reason is that of social disorder which has no limit when it spreads because of adultery and which sometimes results in the destruction of a whole tribe and even a nation. If investigated, the reason behind the rise in half of the cases related to theft, robbery and murder in the world today, will be a man or woman who has committed this crime of adultery.
Though this crime is not directly related to the human rights, but here, it may have been included with the decrees related to these rights because of the fact that this crime is contagious and brings along with it other such crimes which affect the rights of fellow human beings through loss of lives and properties. Therefore, Islam has declared this crime as more serious than any other crime. Further, it has also fixed its punishment as the harshest of all crimes because this one carries with itself hundreds of other crimes. (Ma’ariful Qur’an)
Therefore, the Holy Qur’an declared its punishment in the following manner:
الزَّانِيَةُ وَالزَّانِي فَاجْلِدُوا كُلَّ وَاحِدٍ مِنْهُمَا مِائَةَ
“(As for) the adulteress and the adulterer, flog each of them, (giving) a hundred lashes”. (24:2)
And this act of people who commit it was considered such a bad and abominable that their establishment of relationship with pure and chaste people was not tolerated; its level of detestability is of such a severe nature. Allah Ta’ala says in Qur’an:
الزَّانِي لَا يَنْكِحُ إِلَّا زَانِيَةً أَوْ مُشْرِكَةً وَالزَّانِيَةُ لَا يَنْكِحُهَا إِلَّا زَانٍ أَوْ مُشْرِكٌ
“The adulterer shall not marry any but a adulteress or idolatress, and (as for) the adulteress, none shall marry her but a adulterer or an idolater”. (24:3)
Allaama Shabbir Ahmad Uthmani (RA), while commenting on this Aayat writes:
After mentioning the punishment for adultery, the purpose of its detestability is stated i.e., such men or women who indulge in this evil act are in reality incapable to be associated matrimonially with chaste Muslims. It is suitable as per their polluted nature that they establish relationship with similar kind of immoral and ruinous men or women or even worse than these i.e., with an idolater or an idolatress.
Allah Ta’ala says:
الْخَبِيثَاتُ لِلْخَبِيثِينَ وَالْخَبِيثُونَ لِلْخَبِيثَاتِ وَالطَّيِّبَاتُ لِلطَّيِّبِينَ وَالطَّيِّبُونَ لِلطَّيِّبَاتِ
“Bad women are for bad men and bad men are for bad women. Good women are for good men and good men are for good women”. (24:26)
While commenting on this Aayat, Mawlana Uthmani (RA) says:
i.e., the immoral and wicked women are for immoral and wicked men. Similarly, the immoral and wicked men are only capable to establish relationship with same kind of women. What concern is there between moral and good people with the immoral ones?
This is what their act rightly demanded. It is a separate question why Allah Ta’ala, because of other considerations and sagacity, did not make it lawful for a so-called Muslim to marry an idolater or idolatress or did not declare invalid the Nikaah between a moral woman and an immoral man.
Now, the question arises, the way Allah Ta’ala in His infinite wisdom has kept the inherent desire of hunger in a person, He has in a similar way deposited in him the sexual desire, then what is the way to satisfy it? The answer to this is that the Islamic Shariah has for the satisfaction of this desire and continuation of human race, decreed Nikaah as lawful; and not only has it (the Islamic Shariah) encouraged a person to marry but has also warned him if he avoids it without any valid reason. Accordingly, Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) says:
ألنكاح من سنتي
“Nikaah is my Sunnah” (Mishkaat)
And further, it has been commanded to make it as much easy as possible and also extremely simple. Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) says:
إِنَّ أَعْظَمَ النِّكَاحِ بَرَكَةً أَيْسَرُهُ مُؤْنَةً
“The most blessed Nikaah is that in which there is less expenditure” (Mishkaat)
It is evident that this injunction that has been commanded to be performed with extreme ease and simplicity by the Islamic Shariah, if made difficult with regard to unreasonable customs, outward pomp and show, hereditary and timely formalities, is an extremely heinous crime; for which not only a definite penalty is to be paid in the Hereafter, but due to its negative impact on the society, the punishment is to be suffered in this world itself. Anyhow, the Islamic Shariah has commanded its followers to go for Nikaah in order to remain safe from sins. The Imaan of a person remains safe with Nikaah, and so remain his roaming thoughts. It is in nature of a human being that whenever he looks at any lovable thing e.g., a thing to eat, drink or wear, the desire to have it evolves in him. Similarly, if due to inattentiveness or all of a sudden, one looks at a woman and a sexual desire evolves in him, the Prophet (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) has prescribed to approach his wife.
There is a Hadith in Muslim Shareef, which says:
إِنَّ الْمَرْأَةَ تُقْبِلُ فِى صُورَةِ شَيْطَانٍ وَتُدْبِرُ فِى صُورَةِ شَيْطَانٍ فَإِذَا أَبْصَرَ أَحَدُكُمُ امْرَأَةً فَلْيَأْتِ أَهْلَهُ فَإِنَّ ذَلِكَ يَرُدُّ مَا فِى نَفْسِهِ
“The woman advances and retires in the shape of a devil (i.e., her mode and movements may act as a means of satanic immorality), so when one of you sees a woman, he should come to his wife, for that will repel what he feels in his heart”. (Muslim)
Now, after this explanation and showing an alternative way, if a person, who is already married, looks at a woman prohibited to him, is definitely committing a heinous crime. It is for this reason that the Islamic Shariah has administered severe punishment to a married man or woman viz., if an unmarried person commits such a crime, he/she is to be punished with lashes, whereas a married person is to be stoned to death.
It is narrated in a Hadith that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said:
“The seven heavens and the seven earths curse an adulterer; and in the hell, such a bad smell will spread from their sex organs that the other habitants of the hell will become perplexed because of it. This disgrace will be in addition to their punishment in the hell”. (Bazaar from Mazhari)
In short, adultery is a grave sin whether committed by a married or an unmarried person. It is simply intolerable and its mere thought is horrible for a Muslim. So, when Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) was directed to accept the allegiance of Muslims and also make Dua for them, it was, along with other things, also demanded from them to pledge their allegiance not to commit adultery. Allah Ta’ala says in Qur’an:
يَا أَيُّهَا النَّبِيُّ إِذَا جَاءَكَ الْمُؤْمِنَاتُ يُبَايِعْنَكَ عَلَى أَنْ لَا يُشْرِكْنَ بِاللَّهِ شَيْئًا وَلَا يَسْرِقْنَ وَلَا يَزْنِينَ
“O Prophet! when believing women come to you giving you a pledge that they will not associate aught with Allah, and will not steal, and will not commit adultery” (60:12)
In the Holy Qur’an itself, where the attributes of Mumineen have been mentioned, it has also been said at that particular place that they have nothing to do with adultery. Allah Ta’ala says:
وَالَّذِينَ لَا يَدْعُونَ مَعَ اللَّهِ إِلَهًا آخَرَ وَلَا يَقْتُلُونَ النَّفْسَ الَّتِي حَرَّمَ اللَّهُ إِلَّا بِالْحَقِّ وَلَا يَزْنُونَ
“And they who do not call upon another god with Allah and do not slay the soul, which Allah has forbidden except in the requirements of justice, and (who) do not commit adultery” (25:68)
So, it is the dignity of a Muslim man and woman not to even imagine about adultery. Hadhrat Mawlana Muhammad Idrees Kandhlavi (RA) writes:
In short, adultery is an evil thing. It is the act of fire worshippers. Allah Ta’ala has commanded us not to go even near it, which means that one should not look at a woman prohibited for him as per Shariah. It is near to adultery to look at such a woman. The lineage gets intermixed because of adultery and it is not possible to say anything with confidence about the parentage of a particular child and also no one is there to hold responsibility of such a child. There is no difference between a Zaani (adulterer/adulteress) and an animal; the way an animal satisfies its sexual passion with any female, likewise is the case of an adulterer who commits adultery with any woman he wishes. The way an animal doesn’t need Nikaah, similarly a Zaani (adulterer) is in no need of it. It is worth to mention that the ‘Muta’a’ of the Shias is a kind of adultery.
Evilness of adultery
Islam considers adultery a grave sin and a heinous crime. Ibn Abi ad-Dunya (RA) has quoted that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said:
“There is no other sin after Shirk (to associate partner with Allah) as grave as adultery, in which a person releases his sperm in a womb that is unlawful for him”. (Jamai’ Sageer, Ibn Kathir)
During his last Hajj (Hujjatul Vida), Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) advised to refrain from four acts:
Not to associate a partner with Allah.
Not to kill a forbidden person.
Not to commit adultery.
Not to commit theft.
It is quoted in Musnad Ahmad that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) asked the Sahaaba (RA) about their views regarding adultery? They replied that it is unlawful and will remain so until the day of Judgment. (Ibn Kathir)
It is quoted in Musnad Ahmad:
حَدَّثَنَا عَبْدُ اللَّهِ حَدَّثَنِى أَبِى حَدَّثَنَا يَزِيدُ بْنُ هَارُونَ حَدَّثَنَا حَرِيزٌ حَدَّثَنَا سُلَيْمُ بْنُ عَامِرٍ عَنْ أَبِى أُمَامَةَ قَالَ إِنَّ فَتًى شَابًّا أَتَى النَّبِىَّ -صلى الله عليه وسلم- فَقَالَ يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ ائْذَنْ لِى بِالزِّنَا. فَأَقْبَلَ الْقَوْمُ عَلَيْهِ فَزَجَرُوهُ وَقَالُوا مَهْ مَهْ. فَقَالَ ادْنُهْ فَدَنَا مِنْهُ قَرِيباً. قَالَ فَجَلَسَ. قَالَ أَتُحِبُّهُ لأُمِّكَ قَالَ لاَ وَاللَّهِ جَعَلَنِى اللَّهُ فِدَاكَ . قَالَ وَلاَ النَّاسُ يُحِبُّونَهُ لأُمَّهَاتِهِمْ قَالَ أَفَتُحِبُّهُ لاِبْنَتِكَ قَالَ لاَ وَاللَّهِ يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ جَعَلَنِى اللَّهُ فِدَاكَ. قَالَ وَلاَ النَّاسُ يُحِبُّونَهُ لِبَنَاتِهِمْ قَالَ أَفَتُحِبُّهُ لأُخْتِكَ قَالَ لاَ وَاللَّهِ جَعَلَنِى اللَّهُ فِدَاكَ. قَالَ وَلاَ النَّاسُ يُحِبُّونَهُ لأَخَوَاتِهِمْ قَالَ أَفَتُحِبُّهُ لِعَمَّتِكَ قَالَ لاَ وَاللَّهِ جَعَلَنِى اللَّهُ فِدَاكَ. قَالَ وَلاَ النَّاسُ يُحِبُّونَهُ لِعَمَّاتِهِمْ قَالَ أَفَتُحِبُّهُ لِخَالَتِكَ قَالَ لاَ وَاللَّهِ جَعَلَنِى اللَّهُ فِدَاكَ. قَالَ وَلاَ النَّاسُ يُحِبُّونَهُ لِخَالاَتِهِمْ قَالَ فَوَضَعَ يَدَهُ عَلَيْهِ وَقَالَ اللَّهُمَّ اغْفِرْ ذَنْبَهُ وَطَهِّرْ قَلْبَهُ وَحَصِّنْ فَرْجَهُ قَالَ فَلَمْ يَكُنْ بَعْدُ ذَلِكَ الْفَتَى يَلْتَفِتُ إِلَى شَىْءٍ.
“A young man asked Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) for permission to commit adultery. The Sahaaba (RA) drew near and scolded him? Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) called him towards himself and said, “sit down”. When he sat, Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) asked him, “would you like this act for your mother?”. He said, “no, never, O Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam), may Allah sacrifice me on you”. Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said to him, “then think, how will someone else like it (for his mother)?”. Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) again asked him , “do you like it for your daughter?”. He rejected it also with the same emphasis. Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said, “similarly nobody likes it for their daughters”. So, “do you like it for your sister?”. He again rejected it the same way. Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said, “similarly, nobody likes it for their sisters”. Now, would you like if someone does this with you paternal aunt?”. He again rejected it firmly. Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said, “similarly no one likes it for his aunt”. “Would you like it for your maternal aunt?”. He again rejected it firmly. Then Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) put his blessed hand on his head and invoked, “O Allah! Forgive his sin, and purify his heart, and make him chaste”. After this, the condition of this young man became such that he never looked up at anything”. (Musnad Ahmad)
What greater will be the misfortune than the fact that while committing adultery, a person looses his Imaan. If such a person dies during this act, what will be his fate? Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) says in the most authentic book after the Qur’an (i.e., Bukhari Shareef):
عَنْ أَبِى هُرَيْرَةَ أن رَسُولُ اللَّهِ – صلى الله عليه وسلم قال لاَ يَزْنِى الْعَبْدُ حِينَ يَزْنِى وَهْوَ مُؤْمِنٌ
“It is narrated on the authority of Hadhrat Abu Huraira (RA) that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said, “the adulterer does not remain in the state of Imaan while committing adultery”. (Bukhari)
Allaama Ayni (RA) quotes its commentary from Imaam Bukhari (RA) himself, he writes:
قال البخاري ينزع منه نور الإيمان
“He is deprived of the glow of Imaan”
Hadhrat Ibn Hajr Asqalaani (RA) while narrating from Hadhrat Mujaahid (RA), who in turn narrates from Hadhrat Abdullah bin Abbas (RA), writes:
سمعت النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم يقول من زنى نزع الله نور الإيمان من قلبه فإن شاء أن يرده إليه رده
“I heard Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) saying that one who commits adultery, Allah Ta’ala plucks out Imaan from his heart and then if He wishes to return it back to him, He does so”. (Fathul Baari)
Its commentary, as quoted in the narration of Abu Dawood, is that the Imaan of such people comes out of their hearts while committing this type of crime, and when they finish this act, it returns back to them. (Ma’ariful Qur’an)
During the night of accession (Me’raj), where Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) was shown different kinds of scenes, he also passed by a band of people who were subjected to different kinds of punishment. Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) passed by a nation before whom cooked meat was placed in one pot and uncooked and rotten meat in another. These people instead of eating the cooked meat were eating the uncooked and rotten meat. Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) asked, “who are these people?” Hadhrat Jibra’eel (AS) replied, “these are the men from your Ummah who have Halaal and pure women but they spend their night with immoral adulteresses until dawn, or these are the women from your Ummah who have left their Halaal and pure husbands and spend their night with immoral adulterers”.
Adultery—a sign of Qiyaamah
Adultery is such an evil thing that it has been considered as one of the signs of Qiyaamah. The Holy Prophet (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said:
مِنْ أَشْرَاطِ السَّاعَةِ أَنْ يَظْهَرَ الْجَهْلُ ، وَيَقِلَّ الْعِلْمُ ، وَيَظْهَرَ الزِّنَا ، وَتُشْرَبَ الْخَمْرُ ، وَيَقِلَّ الرِّجَالُ، وَيَكْثُرَ النِّسَاءُ ، حَتَّى يَكُونَ لِخَمْسِينَ امْرَأَةً قَيِّمُهُنَّ رَجُلٌ وَاحِدٌ أطرافه
“From among the signs of the Hour are the following: general ignorance (in religious matters) will increase; religious knowledge will be taken away; illegal sexual intercourse will prevail: drinking of alcoholic drinks will prevail. Men will decrease in number, and women will increase in number, so much so that fifty women will be looked after by a single man.” (Bukhari)
Therefore, it is clear from different narrations that close to the day of Qiyaamah, immodesty and obscenity will be on rise. So, when there is an apprehension of certain disease to spread, one should try his utmost to save himself from such a disease. It becomes necessary to strive for safety in such a situation and for the purpose of caution, all such routes and affairs which may serve as a cause of involvement into this abominable act are required to be banned.
Kinds of adultery
It is quoted in Musnad Ahmad:
عَنْ أَبِى هُرَيْرَةَ أَنَّ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ -صلى الله عليه وسلم- قَالَ كُلُّ ابْنِ آدَمَ لَهُ حَظُّهُ مِنَ الزِّنَا فَزِنَا الْعَيْنَيْنِ النَّظَرُ وَزِنَا الْيَدَيْنِ الْبَطْشُ وَزِنَا الرِّجْلَيْنِ الْمَشْىُ وَزِنَا الْفَمِ الْقُبَلُ وَالْقَلْبُ يَهْوَى وَيَتَمَنَّى وَيُصَدِّقُ ذَلِكَ أَوْ يُكَذِّبُهُ الْفَرْجُ
It is narrated on the authority of Hadhrat Abu Huraira (RA) that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said, “The adultery of eyes is to see; the adultery of hands is to touch; the adultery of feet is to walk; the adultery of lips is to kiss; the heart desires it (and this is its adultery) and the sex organ confirms it (i.e., if it commits it) or falsifies it (i.e., if it doesn’t commit it)”. (Musnand Ahmad)
There is another narration with the same subject but a little brief. It says:
عَنِ ابْنِ مَسْعُودٍ عَنِ النَّبِىِّ صلى الله عليه وسلم أَنَّهُ قَالَ الْعَيْنَانِ تَزْنِيَانِ وَالْيَدَانِ تَزْنِيَانِ وَالرِّجْلاَنِ تَزْنِيَانِ وَالْفَرْجُ يَزْنِى
Hadhrat Abdullah Ibn Masood (RA) narrated the Prophet (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) as saying: “The eyes also commit adultery, the hands also commit adultery, the feet also commit adultery and the sex organ also commits adultery”. (Musnad Ahmad)
Therefore, it is necessary for a person to save himself from the causes, motives and elements of adultery viz., kissing, embracing, fun, chatting etc., rather one should extremely avoid the basic cause of all these i.e., ‘to look’. One should always try not to look at any Gair-Mahram, and if he is extremely attentive in this, it is possible for him to remain safe, otherwise, the sight is the first ladder that leads to adultery. What harm is there in looking, thinks a person at the first instance; not knowing that this is such kind of fire which does not extinguish until it totally burns down everything. That is why it has been strictly prohibited in Ahaadith.
عَنِ الْحَسَنِ قَالَ بَلَغَنِى أَنَّ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ -صلى الله عليه وسلم قَالَ لَعَنَ اللَّهُ النَّاظِرَ وَالْمَنْظُورَ إِلَيْهِ
“Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said, “Allah has cursed the one who looks at (a stranger) and the one who is being looked at (because of his willingness to get noticed)” (Baihaqi)
While commenting on this Hadith, Hadhrat Mawlana Manzoor Nomani (RA) says:
One who looks at a stranger or at his/her Satr (the parts of body which are unlawful to reveal/look at), then the curse of Allah will befall on him i.e., he is deprived of Allah’s mercy. Similarly, the woman who deliberately gives an opportunity so that others may look at her, will also be deprived of Allah’s mercy”. (Ma’ariful Hadith)
Importance of Pardah (veil) for women
To overcome or end the evil effects of sight, it was made obligatory for a woman to remain under cover so that no opportunity is left for anyone to have a look at her. A woman was further regarded as a cause of disorder if she comes out of her residence without any valid reason.
مَا تَرَكْتُ بَعْدِى فِتْنَةً أَضَرَّ عَلَى الرِّجَالِ مِنَ النِّسَاءِ
“The most harmful and damaging ordeal for the men is that of women”
Another Hadith in this respect is:
عَنْ عَبْدِ اللَّهِ عَنِ النَّبِىِّ صلى الله عليه وسلم قَالَ الْمَرْأَةُ عَوْرَةٌ فَإِذَا خَرَجَتِ اسْتَشْرَفَهَا الشَّيْطَانُ.
Hadhrat Abdullah ibn Masood narrated from Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) that: “A woman is as if Satr (i.e., since the Satr is required to be concealed, similarly a woman should remain under cover in her home). When she comes out, the devils keep ogling at her and make her a target of their eyes”.
While commenting on this Hadith, Mawlana Manzoor Nomani (RA) writer:
According to the Arabic language, the word “Awrah” represents that part of the body which is necessarily to be kept under cover and which if revealed, is regarded as blameworthy. In this Hadith it is said, “المرأة عورة” i.e., the nature of female gender is that it should remain under cover. Further it has been said that when a woman comes out of her home, the devils keep on ogling at her. The purpose and objective of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) is that the women should as far as possible avoid to come out of their homes so that the devils and their followers may not get any kind of opportunity to make a mischief or a devilish act. If it becomes necessary for them to come out, they should be properly covered and without any show of adornment or decoration. An Aayat of the Holy Qur’an also guides towards the same issue. Allah Ta’ala says:
وَقَرْنَ فِي بُيُوتِكُنَّ وَلَا تَبَرَّجْنَ تَبَرُّجَ الْجَاهِلِيَّةِ
“And stay quietly in your houses, and make not a dazzling display, like that of the former times of ignorance”. (33:33)
Similarly, it has been strictly prohibited to look at the Satr (private parts) of any person. it is worth mentioning here that usually people consider only the sex organs as Satr, whereas the Satr of a man is from below the knee up to the navel and the Satr of a woman is her whole body. Some people carelessly or unknowingly, while revealing their knees and thighs, tie a little cloth below the navel (i.e., loin cloth) only, this is not right.
There is a clear statement of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) regarding the emergence of women from their homes, which says:
إِنَّهُ قَدْ أُذِنَ لَكُنَّ أَنْ تَخْرُجْنَ لِحَاجَتِكُنَّ (معارف الحديث)
“i.e., they have been allowed to come out in case of necessity” (Ma’aariful Hadith)
But this should be limited to the level of necessity and compulsion and she should not beautify herself or wear such kind of garments which may attract one towards her. Further, it is to be kept in mind that the necessity or compulsion is only that which is considered so by the Islamic Shariah. This is not an issue which everyone can decide, but is to be sorted out according to the Shariah. The present day fashion wherein a woman comes out with all kinds of make up and adornment to attend the schools, colleges, other educational institutions and similarly the offices, trade centers or the like and further to shopping, fares, marriages, anniversaries etc., is simply unfair and unjust if interpreted as a necessity or compulsion. Similarly, it is also being wrongly interpreted as a necessity to work jointly with men folk in the fields especially in wilderness and forests. This is a severe injustice and also the main reason behind the fact that since the woman came out of her cover, the trials and tribulations increased considerably. This is the root cause of ailment and also the resulting tests and tribulations (e.g., the elopement of girls from their homes, their abduction by the strangers, incompatible marriages, marriages without the consent of a caretaker, etc.,) that have surfaced because of it, which the so-called intellectuals are irrigating. These trials and tribulations are only like the branches and fruits which these so-called intellectuals are trying to set right and in doing so look for the modifications in the Shariah. (May Allah protect us from doing so).
In case of exigency, if a woman has to come out of her home and she will do so while observing due Islamic cover, nobody will be able to look at her. Also, when she will remain indoors, clearly there will be no apprehension of tests. (Here it should be kept in mind that the cover used by the women nowadays is by name definitely a cover but according to its adornment and decoration, it is a civilized portrayal of exposure which serves as an invitation of display to a stranger. It cannot be considered as a true Islamic cover). Anyhow, in whichever condition a woman comes out of her home, it is incumbent upon men to protect their own eyes. If while protecting themselves, unintentionally and suddenly any person has a look at a lady, then decree for this has been mentioned in a Hadith as:
عَنْ جَرِيرِ بْنِ عَبْدِ اللَّهِ قَالَ سَأَلْتُ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم عَنْ نَظَرِ الْفُجَاءَةِ فَأَمَرَنِى أَنْ أَصْرِفَ بَصَرِى.
Hadhrat Jaabir bin Abdullah (RA) narrates that I asked Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) about the sudden look. He commanded me that I should divert my sight”. (Muslim)
There is another clear Hadith on this issue, which says:
عَنِ ابْنِ بُرَيْدَةَ عَنْ أَبِيهِ قَالَ قَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم لِعَلِىٍّ يَا عَلِىُّ لاَ تُتْبِعِ النَّظْرَةَ النَّظْرَةَ فَإِنَّ لَكَ الأُولَى وَلَيْسَتْ لَكَ الآخِرَةُ
Hadhrat Buraida (RA) narrates that once Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said to Hadhrat Ali (RA): “O Ali! (if you have a look at a Gair-Mahram woman) then don’t cast your look again at her. It is permissible (i.e., there will be no accountability or sin) for you once (since it was unintentional) but not the second time”. (Abu Dawood, Tirmidhi)
If after a sudden look ones heart desires to continue ogling; the struggle he undertakes to divert his gaze for the safety of his Imaan and because of the fear of disobedience towards Allah Ta’ala, not only will he be saved from this sin by the blessings of Allah Ta’ala but the love and the generosity of Allah Ta’ala on His slave is such that He has promised to reward him for this act. And what is that promise? The true and trustworthy Prophet (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) says:
أَبِى أُمَامَةَ عَنِ النَّبِىِّ -صلى الله عليه وسلم- قَالَ مَا مِنْ مُسْلِمٍ يَنْظُرُ إِلَى مَحَاسِنِ امْرَأَةٍ أَوَّلَ مَرَّةٍ ثُمَّ يَغُضُّ بَصَرَهُ إِلاَّ أَحْدَثَ اللَّهُ لَهُ عِبَادَةً يَجِدُ حَلاَوَتَهَا – (مسند أحمد)
“Hadhrat Abu Umama (RA) narrates the Prophet (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) as saying: A Muslim man who catches the sight of a beautiful and charming woman for the first time and then lowers his gaze (to avoid looking at her again), Allah Ta’ala will bless him with such an Ibaadah, the sweetness of which he will experience himself”. (Musnad Ahmad)
Not to meet a Gair-Mahram alone even during necessity
Nowadays it is regarded as a part of culture and civilization to chat, be informal, correspond etc., with a Gair-Mahram (a person with whom Islamic pardah is to be observed). However the evils that these things carry with them do not remain concealed before any sensible person. That is why Allah Ta’ala has forbidden it, and this is the reason that if a person does not look at a woman or that she is under cover, still it is not permissible for him to listen her voice. The reason behind this is that to listen to her voice might tempt him to see her and then he might move on step by step, the result of which is nothing but destruction and ruin. (اللهم احفظنا منه—May Allah save us from it). Unfortunately, nowadays it has become a fashion that meetings in form of conversation and correspondence take place with a Gair-Mahram, which is in no way is allowed by the Islamic Shariah. A statement of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) is narrated from Hadhrat Umar (RA) as:
لاَ يَخْلُوَنَّ رَجُلٌ بِامْرَأَةٍ إِلاَّ كَانَ ثَالِثَهُمَا الشَّيْطَانُ (ترمزي.مشكاة)
“It cannot happen that a Gair-Mahram man meets a woman in solitude and the third one i.e., devil is not present there” (Tirmidhi, Mishkaat)
This means that when a Gair-Mahram man meets a woman in solitude, the devil will definitely try to involve them in a sinful act, therefore, this cursed creature and the enemy of Imaan should not be given any such opportunity. (Ma’ariful Hadith)
Another narration, more detailed than the previous one in this respect is narrated by Uqba bin Aamir (RA), which says:
أَنَّ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم قَالَ إِيَّاكُمْ وَالدُّخُولَ عَلَى النِّسَاءِ فَقَالَ رَجُلٌ مِنَ الأَنْصَارِ يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ أَفَرَأَيْتَ الْحَمْوَ قَالَ الْحَمْوُ الْمَوْتُ (بخاري)
Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said, “Keep yourselves away from (Gair-Mahram) women (i.e., be extremely careful in this matter). A man asked, O Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam)! “(for a woman) What is the command regarding her brother-in-law (i.e., her husband brother)? Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said, “He is simply a death (and destruction)”. (Bukhari)
While commenting on this Hadith, Hadhrat Mawlana Muhammad Manzoor Nomani (RA), writes:
Among the close relatives of husband, his father and children (if from another wife) are Mahram to her. All other relatives except them including the true brother of her husband are Gair-Mahram to her. This person (i.e., the brother-in-law of a woman) is not allowed to freely enter into her house or talk or look at her, which according to the commandments of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) is extremely dangerous and a deadly poison for chastity and integrity.
The Islamic Shariah has on one side commanded to look after and sympathize with ones brother, but at the same time, it has also prohibited him to enter into the house of such a brother where his wife is alone and he is out, so that there is no adverse effect on ones Imaan.
Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) says in a Hadith:
لاَ تَلِجُوا عَلَى الْمُغِيبَاتِ فَإِنَّ الشَّيْطَانَ يَجْرِى مِنْ أَحَدِكُمْ مَجْرَى الدَّمِ (ترمزي)
“Don’t visit the homes of those women whose husbands are out because the devil streams (i.e., his invisible influence and insinuation) in you like the blood in veins”. (Tirmidhi)
Cautiousness in neighbourhood
It is extremely necessary to remain cautious in this matter because there is extreme danger of getting involved in sin in such a situation. The heinousness and harshness of this sin increases especially when the concerned is a neighbour, because it is the right of a neighbour that a person guards his life, property and honour, in the same way as he does his own. But at the same time one should remain very careful from other things and not land into the quagmire of sins while paying due attention to the rights of his neighbour.
There is a Hadith in Tirmidhi which says:
ألزنا مع امرأة الجار من اكبر الكبائر
“It is among the Akbar-ul-Kabaa’ir (graver than the grave sin) to commit adultery with a next door woman”.
In another Hadith it is narrated that a Sahaabi asked Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam):
يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ أَىُّ الذَّنْبِ أَعْظَمُ
“Which is the gravest of sins”
Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said:
أَنْ تَجْعَلَ لِلَّهِ نِدًّا وَهُوَ خَلَقَكَ
“that you set up a rival (in worship) to Allah whereas it is He, Who created you”.
He again asked, “which next?”.
أَنْ تَقْتُلَ وَلَدَكَ خَشْيَةَ أَنْ يَطْعَمَ مَعَكَ
Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said:
“that you kill your child being afraid (because of poverty) that he may share your meals with you”.
He further asked again, “which next?“
Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said:
أَنْ تَزْنِىَ بِحَلِيلَةِ جَارِكَ
“that you commit adultery with your neighbour’s wife”.
In another narration while answering the question, “which next?”, it has been narrated that:
أَنْ تَزْنِىَ بِحَلِيلَةِ جَارِكَ ثم تلا هذه الآية وَالَّذِينَ لَا يَدْعُونَ مَعَ اللَّهِ إِلَهًا إلى قوله مُهَانًا
The Prophet said:
“to commit adultery with your neighbour’s wife” and then the Prophet (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) recited the following verses of Surah Furqaan:
“And they who do not call upon another god with Allah and do not slay the soul, which Allah has forbidden except in the requirements of justice, and (who) do not commit fornication and whoever does this shall find a requital of sin; The punishment shall be doubled to him on the day of resurrection, and he shall abide therein in abasement.” (25:68,69)
This type of Hadith is also quoted in Bukhari with the following words:
عَنْ عَبْدِ اللَّهِ رضى الله عنه قَالَ سَأَلْتُ أَوْ سُئِلَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم أَىُّ الذَّنْبِ عِنْدَ اللَّهِ أَكْبَرُ قَالَ أَنْ تَجْعَلَ لِلَّهِ نِدًّا وَهْوَ خَلَقَكَ قُلْتُ ثُمَّ أَىٌّ قَالَ ثُمَّ أَنْ تَقْتُلَ وَلَدَكَ خَشْيَةَ أَنْ يَطْعَمَ مَعَكَ قُلْتُ ثُمَّ أَىٌّ قَالَ أَنْ تُزَانِىَ بِحَلِيلَةِ جَارِكَ قَالَ وَنَزَلَتْ هَذِهِ الآيَةُ تَصْدِيقًا لِقَوْلِ رَسُولِ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم ( وَالَّذِينَ لاَ يَدْعُونَ مَعَ اللَّهِ إِلَهًا آخَرَ وَلاَ يَقْتُلُونَ النَّفْسَ الَّتِى حَرَّمَ اللَّهُ إِلاَّ بِالْحَقِّ )
Narrated ‘Abdullah bin Masood narrates that I or somebody else, asked the Apostle of Allah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam), “Which is the gravest sin near Allah?” He said, “That you set up a rival (in worship) to Allah though He alone created you.” I asked, “What is next?” He said, “that you kill your child, being afraid that he may share your meals with you.” I asked, “What is next?” He said, “That you commit illegal sexual intercourse with your neighbour’s wife.” Then the following verse was revealed to confirm the statement of Allah’s Apostle: “Those who invoke not with Allah, any other god, nor kill life as Allah has forbidden except for just cause, nor commit illegal sexual intercourse.” (25.68)
Merits of Nikaah
The religion of Islam wants its followers to have the extreme degree of integrity, piety, forbearance, sympathy, kindness, chastity and purity. It also demands that they should be free, clean and far away from the ugly opprobrious attributes like dishonesty, treachery, greed, immodesty, shamelessness. Regarding the satisfaction of human necessities which Allah Ta’ala has trusted in the human being, He has Himself recommended its suitable and satisfactory treatment. Accordingly, Nikaah has been made as a means for the safety of eyes and sex organ. There is a Hadith quoted in both Bukhari as well as Muslim, which says:
فَقَالَ عَبْدُ اللَّهِ كُنَّا مَعَ النَّبِىِّ صلى الله عليه وسلم شَبَابًا لاَ نَجِدُ شَيْئًا فَقَالَ لَنَا رَسُولُ اللَّهُ صلى الله عليه وسلم يَا مَعْشَرَ الشَّبَابِ مَنِ اسْتَطَاعَ الْبَاءَةَ فَلْيَتَزَوَّجْ ، فَإِنَّهُ أَغَضُّ لِلْبَصَرِ وَأَحْصَنُ لِلْفَرْجِ ، وَمَنْ لَمْ يَسْتَطِعْ فَعَلَيْهِ بِالصَّوْمِ ، فَإِنَّهُ لَهُ وِجَاءٌ (مشكاة)
Hadhrat Abdullah bin Masood narrates that We were with the Prophet while we were young and had no wealth whatever. So Allah’s Apostle said, “O young people! Whoever among you can marry, should marry, because it helps him to lower his gaze and guard his modesty (i.e. his sex organ from committing illegal sexual intercourse etc.), and whoever is not able to marry, should fast, as fasting will diminish his sexual passion.” (Miskhaat)
Another Hadith says:
إذَا تَزَوَّجَ الْعَبْدُ فَقَدِ السْتَكْمَلَ نِصْفُ الدِّيْنِ فَليَتَّقِ الله َ فِي النِّصفِ الْبَاقِي (مشكاة)
“When a man performs Nikaah, he completes half of his Deen, therefore, regarding the other half, he should adopt Taqwa (piety) from Allah Ta’ala”. (Mishkaat)
The author of ‘Lam’aat’, while commenting on this Hadith writes:
إنما جعل التزوج نصفا لأن الغالب في أفساد الدين الفرج و البطن
“The Nikaah has been regarded as half of the Deen because it has been commonly observed that only two things spoil the righteousness viz., the sex organ and the stomach”.
The issue of the safety of sex organ is solved by Nikaah, which makes a person chaste and modest. The thoughts and sight of such a person get serenity. That is why Allah Ta’ala helps such a person who wants to perform Nikaah and strives for it in order to save himself from indulging into an unlawful act. It is mentioned in a Hadith that one who performs Nikaah is among the three persons for whom Allah Ta’ala has promised adequate help. It is said:
ثَلاَثَةٌ حَقٌّ عَلَى اللَّهِ عَوْنُهُمُ الْمُجَاهِدُ فِى سَبِيلِ اللَّهِ وَالْمُكَاتَبُ الَّذِى يُرِيدُ الأَدَاءَ وَالنَّاكِحُ الَّذِى يُرِيدُ الْعَفَافَ (ترمزي. نسائي. ابن ماجه)
“Three (are the persons) for whom Allah Ta’ala has taken the responsibility of help. One among them is that person who is going to perform Nikaah and wants to achieve chastity and modesty through it” (Tirmidhi, Nasa’ie, Ibn Majah)
Glad tidings for an obedient woman
It is for these reasons that a woman who serves as a cause of chastity, comfort and ease for her husband has been given the glad tidings.
عن أنس قال قال رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم المرأة إذا صلت خمسها وصامت شهرها وأحصنت فرجها وأطاعت بعلها فلتدخل من أي أبواب الجنة شاءت . رواه أبو نعيم في الحلية (مسند أبو نعيم في الحلية-مشكاة)
Hadhrat Anas (RA) narrated that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said, “If a woman has offered five time prayers, has kept fast for the month of Ramadhan, guarded her sex organ and obeyed her husband, such a woman will enter Jannah from whichever door she desires”. (Abu Na’eem – Mishkaat)
What greater glad tidings can one wish or expect other than this? In a Hadith, such a woman has been highly praised who is happy with her husband, cheers him up when he looks at her, does not fast (supererogatory fast) without his consent as he may require her at any instance of time. This is because, all what she has done is to keep her husband completely chaste.
A Hadith has been mentioned as:
عَنْ أَبِى هُرَيْرَةَ رضى الله عنه – قَالَ قَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم إِذَا دَعَا الرَّجُلُ امْرَأَتَهُ إِلَى فِرَاشِهِ فَأَبَتْ ، فَبَاتَ غَضْبَانَ عَلَيْهَا، لَعَنَتْهَا الْمَلاَئِكَةُ حَتَّى تُصْبِحَ (بخاري)
Hadhrat Abu Hurairah (RA) narrated that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said, “If a man invites his wife to bed and she refuses, and he spends whole night in a state of anger and annoyance, then the angels curse on such a woman until morning”. (Bukhari)
Ponder the issue, what is the reason behind such a severe warning? It is only that Allah Ta’ala has made Nikaah and marital relations a means of chastity and purity for both man and woman. That is why if a married man or woman commits adultery while possessing lawful means at hand and still adopting wrongful means, then the punishment that has been decreed for them is also very severe in nature. Accordingly, the Islamic Shariah has commanded that they should be stoned. In a Hadith, the danger and condemnation of this act has been mentioned in the following words:
عَنْ أَبِى هُرَيْرَةَ قَالَ قَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم ثَلاَثَةٌ لاَ يُكَلِّمُهُمُ اللَّهُ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ وَلاَ يُزَكِّيهِمْ قَالَ أَبُو مُعَاوِيَةَ وَلاَ يَنْظُرُ إِلَيْهِمْ وَلَهُمْ عَذَابٌ أَلِيمٌ شَيْخٌ زَانٍ وَمَلِكٌ كَذَّابٌ وَعَائِلٌ مُسْتَكْبِرٌ (مسلم)
It is narrated on the authority of Abu Huraira (RA) that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said, “Three (are the persons) with whom Allah would neither speak, nor would He absolve them on the Day of Resurrection. Abu Mu’awiya added: He would not look at them and there is grievous torment for them: the aged adulterer, the liar king and the proud destitute. (Muslim)
At the same time, the punishment for an unmarried person who commits adultery is to lash him. Allah Ta’ala says in Holy Qur’an:
وَالزَّانِي فَاجْلِدُوا كُلَّ وَاحِدٍ مِنْهُمَا مِائَةَ جَلْدَةٍ وَلَا تَأْخُذْكُمْ بِهِمَا رَأْفَةٌ فِي دِينِ اللَّهِ إِنْ كُنْتُمْ تُؤْمِنُونَ بِاللَّهِ وَالْيَوْمِ الْآخِرِ وَلْيَشْهَدْ عَذَابَهُمَا طَائِفَةٌ مِنَ الْمُؤْمِنِينَ
“(As for) the adulteress and the adulterer, flog each of them, (giving) a hundred lashes, and let not pity for them detain you in the matter of obedience to Allah, if you believe in Allah and the last day, and let a party of believers witness their chastisement”. (24:2)
It is clearly stated in the Qur’an:
نِسَاؤُكُمْ حَرْثٌ لَكُمْ فَأْتُوا حَرْثَكُمْ أَنَّى شِئْتُمْ
“Your wives are as a tilth unto you; so approach your tilth when or how you wish”. (2:223)
Unnatural sex and its prohibition
However, there are few commandments that one is necessarily supposed to adopt while approaching his tilth.
عَنِ ابْنِ عَبَّاسٍ قَالَ أَنْزَلَ اللَّهُ عَلَى رَسُولِ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم هَذِهِ الآيَةَ (نِسَاؤُكُمْ حَرْثٌ لَكُمْ فَأْتُوا حَرْثَكُمْ أَنَّى شِئْتُمْ) أَقْبِلْ وَأَدْبِرْ وَاتَّقِ الدُّبُرَ وَالْحِيضَةَ (ترمزي)
Hadhrat Ibn Abbas (RA) narrated that the verse “Your wives are as a tilth unto you; so approach your tilth when or how you wish” was revealed to Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam), but beware of two things viz., to commit sodomy and perform sexual intercourse with ones wife when she is menstruating”. (Tirmidhi)
There are many narration regarding this issue, e.g., a Hadith says:
إِن الله َ لَا يَسْتَحْيِي مِنَ الْحَقِ لَا تَأتُوْا النِسَاء مِنْ أدْبَارِهِنَّ (مشكاة)
“Allah is not ashamed to speak what is true. (it is commanded that) do not commit sodomy with women”. (Mishkaat)
The words of another such narration are as follows:
إِنَّ الْذِيْ يَأتِي امْرأتِه فِي دُبُرِهَا لَا يَنْظُرُ الله ُ إِلَيْه (شرح السنه)
“Allah Ta’ala will not look (with mercy) at a person who commits sodomy with his wife, (i.e., Allah Ta’ala will not look at him because of annoyance and anger) (Sharah-us-Sunnah)”
In another Hadith it is said:
قَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم مَلْعُونٌ مَنْ أَتَى امْرَأَتَهُ فِى دُبُرِهَا (أحمد)
“Rasulullah said, “He who commits sodomy with his wife is cursed”. (Ahmad)
When this unnatural act has been regarded as Haraam (unlawful) with ones own wife, how dangerous will it be if committed with a Gair-Mahram, a man/boy or with an animal etc? It is evident that there will be strict prohibition on such an act. Even an animal does not commit such an act with another animal.
In this world, the people of Lut were involved in this act. Allah Ta’ala completely destroyed that part of the earth and stones were showered on them from the sky.
وَأَمْطَرْنَا عَلَيْهِمْ مَطَرًا فَسَاءَ مَطَرُ الْمُنْذَرِينَ
“And We rained down upon them a rain, and evil was the rain on those warned”. (26:173)
In this way, the people of Lut and the punishment they received served a lesson for all the people to come until the last day. The approach that has been adopted in the warnings given in the Ahaadith regarding this evil act is worth witnessing.
عَنِ ابْنِ عَبَّاسٍ قَالَ قَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم لاَ يَنْظُرُ اللَّهُ إِلَى رَجُلٍ أَتَى رَجُلاً أَوِ امْرَأَةً فِى الدُّبُرِ (ترمزي)
Hadhrat Ibn Abbas narrated that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said, “Allah Ta’ala will not look at that person who commits sodomy with a woman or a man”. (Tirmidhi)
There is another Hadith also on the authority of Hadhrat Abbas (RA) which says:
قَالَ قَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم مَنْ وَجَدْتُمُوهُ يَعْمَلُ عَمَلَ قَوْمِ لُوطٍ فَاقْتُلُوا الْفَاعِلَ وَالْمَفْعُولَ بِهِ (ترمزي)
Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said, “whoever you see committing the act which the people of Lut committed, kill both the sodomist and his minion”. (Tirmidhi)
The Ulema have termed this Hadith as a threat only, but it is quite evident how grave this crime is.
There is another Hadith which says:
مُحَمَّدٍ عَنْ عَمْرِو بْنِ أَبِى عَمْرٍو مَلْعُونٌ مَنْ عَمِلَ عَمَلَ قَوْمِ لُوطٍ (ترمزي)
“Hadhrat Umru bin Abi Umru (RA) narrates that a person who committed the act of the people of Lut is cursed”. (Tirmidhi)
Another Hadith says:
عَنْ أَبِى هُرَيْرَةَ قَالَ لاَ أَعْلَمُهُ إِلاَّ عَنِ النَّبِىِّ صلى الله عليه وسلم قَالَ لاَ تُبَاشِرِ الْمَرْأَةُ الْمَرْأَةَ وَلاَ يُبَاشِرِ الرَّجُلُ الرَّجُلَ (مسند أحمد)
Hadhrat Abu Huraira (RA) narrated that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said, “Neither a woman should copulate with another woman nor a man with another man”. (Musnad Ahmad)
In a Hadith such a person who copulates with his/her companion has been named as “Dayyouth”. The Hadith says:
عَنْ عَبْدُ اللَّهِ بْنُ عُمَرَ أَنَّ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم قَالَ ثَلاَثَةٌ قَدْ حَرَّمَ اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِمُ الْجَنَّةَ مُدْمِنُ الْخَمْرِ وَالْعَاقُّ وَالْدَّيُّوثُ الَّذِى يُقِرُّ فِى أَهْلِهِ الْخَبَثَ
Hadhrat Abdullah bin Umar (RA) narrated that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said, “Three (are the persons) on whom Allah Ta’ala has made Jannat Haraam, 1. a habitual drunkard 2. a disobedient 3. a Dayyouth (cuckold) a shameless person who lets immodesty to prevail in his house)”. (Musnad Ahmad)
In yet another Hadith it has been mentioned as:
عَنْ عَبْدِ اللَّهِ بْنِ مُحَمَّدِ بْنِ عَقِيلٍ أَنَّهُ سَمِعَ جَابِرًا يَقُولُ قَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم إِنَّ أَخْوَفَ مَا أَخَافُ عَلَى أُمَّتِى عَمَلُ قَوْمِ لُوطٍ مَن عَمِل عَمَلَ قَومَ لوطِ أو أتَى بَهِيمَةً فَيُقتَل (أبو داؤد. ترمزي. ابن ماجه. نسائي)
Hadhrat Abdullah bin Muhammad bin Aqeel narrated that he heard Jaabir saying that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said, “The thing that I am most afraid regarding my Ummah is the act of the people of Lut. The person who commits such an act or does so with an animal should be killed” (Abu Dawood, Tirmidhi, Ibn Majah, Nasa’ie)
When the animals, who lack intellect and comprehension, desist from such kind of abominable act, how can the man who is regarded as Ashraful Makhlukaat (best of the creation) indulge in it? The so-called civilized nations of the present world have fallen even below the status of animals and that is why they don’t consider this act as shameful. How much else will the intellect and wisdom slump than this, that the nations which claim to be civilized, consider the marital relationship between the same gender as permissible. It is because of this slumped intellect and wisdom that the British parliament has accorded a legal status to the relationship between the same gender as lawful. Ironically on this animal nature they claim to be a civilized nation in the whole world. May we get the privilege to sacrifice ourselves on extremely merciful and affectionate Prophet (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam), who has led us through this aspect of life also, and furnished guidance regarding modesty, chastity and purity.
It is the extremity of immodesty that this Ashraful Makhlukaat satisfies his sexual passion with an animal. The Holy Prophet (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) has also elucidated the rights of animals, and in this case has issued clear instructions and serious warnings. Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said:
مَلْعُونٌ مَنْ أَتَى بَهِيمَةً (ترمزي)
“He who satisfies his desire with an animal is cursed”. (Tirmidhi)
Immoral information should not be publicised
Islam wants modesty to prevail and it prevents from publicising the information related to immorality. It has prohibited a person to publicise evil if he happens to listen to or look at any. If a person is seen doing anything bad, he should be advised not to do so and his act should not be narrated to others, not to speak of making it a headline in newspapers or give it publicity by other means. To consider this as ‘freedom of journalism’ is a term of those ignorant people who are involved in the optimism of the present era. Otherwise, who—being a truly intellectual will allow all this? To publicize immorality will only spread evilness. That is why it is required to conceal the immorality of a person, and while doing so, advise and exhort him not to indulge in such kind of acts. It is narrated in a Hadith:
مَنْ سَتَرَ مُسْلِمًا سَتَرَهُ اللَّهُ فِى الدُّنْيَا وَالآخِرَةِ (مسلم)
“He who conceals (immoralities of) a Muslim, Allah will conceal him (i.e., his immoralities) in this world and the Hereafter”. (Muslim)
Further more, it has been quoted in Abu Dawood and Nasa’ie that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said:
مَنْ رَأَى عَوْرَةً فَسَتَرَهَا كَانَ كَمَنْ أَحْيَا مَوْءُودَةً (أبو داؤد. نسائي)
“He who conceals (immoralities of) anybody, it is as if he resurrected a girl who was buried alive”.
(Abu Dawood, Nasa’ie)
The affectionate and sympathetic Prophet (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) of the whole mankind directed that if there is any animal with whom a person, ignorant and unaware of the consequences, has committed an immoral act, it should be slaughtered. The reason behind this is that people should not be able to point at that animal and say it is with whom an immoral act was committed. It is quoted in Tirmidhi:
عَنِ ابْنِ عَبَّاسٍ قَالَ قَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم مَنْ وَجَدْتُمُوهُ وَقَعَ عَلَى بَهِيمَةٍ فَاقْتُلُوهُ وَاقْتُلُوا الْبَهِيمَةَ (ترمزي. مسند أحمد)
Hadhrat Abdullah bin Abbas (RA) narrated that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said, “whosoever you find has committed an immoral act with an animal, kill him and also slaughter that animal”. (Tirmidhi, Musnad Ahmad)
The Islamic Shariah has commanded to slaughter such animal on the basis that its mere mention or the cause of mention also ceases to exist. But, the so-called civilized nations of the present era do not perceive any shame in these actions of immorality. Alas! Whereas these kind of actions are clear and manifest proof of stupidity. Imaam Ghazali (RA), in his famous book, ‘Ihya-ul-Uloom’, writes:
When a person reaches to the extreme level of (sexual) passion, two third of his intellect departs.
Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) used to invoke this prayer:
أَعُوذُ بِكَ مِنْ شَرِّ سَمْعِى وَ بَصَرِى وَ قَلْبِى وَ هَنِى و مَنِيِّى
“O Allah! I take refuge in You from the harm of my ear, eye, heart, private part and the sperm” (Ihya-ul-Uloom)
Allah Ta’ala has not granted the sexual appetite to man so that he may prove himself a devil or animal with it, but it has been created inside him for a particular purpose. In this connection, Imaam Ghazali (RA) writes:
اعلم أن شهوة الوقاع سلطنت على الإنسان لفائدتين أحدهما أن يدرك لذته فيقس به لذات الآخرة فإن لذة الوقاع لو دامت لكان أقوى لذات الأجساد كما أن النار و آلامها أعظم آلام الجسد و الترغيب و الترهيب يسوق الناس ألى سعادتهم و ليس ذالك إلا بألم محسوس و لذات محسوسة مدركة فإن مالا يدرك بالذوق لا يعظم إليه الشوق. ألفائدة الثانية بقاء الناس و دوام الوجود فهذه فائدتها (إحياء العلوم جزء ثالث القول في شهوة الفرج)
“Know that the sexual passion has been created inside human beings for two benefits. (i) He may gauge the pleasures of the Hereafter through sexual intercourse. If it were lasting, this pleasure would have been stronger than any other pleasure, as the physical pain inflicted by fire is greater than any other pain. To gain eternal fortune, warnings and arousal of interests are necessary for people and this necessity can be accomplished in its entirety only when a perceptible pain or a perceptible pleasure is made as its means. (2) The second benefit is preservation of mankind”. (Ihya-ul-Uloom, Vol 111, ‘Sexual Passion’)
Further, Imaam Bukhari (RA) narrates its different kinds in a very nice manner. He writes:
The sexual passion is half the army of devil and its another half is anger. It is because of these two that he conquers the hearts. The greatest of the passions is that of a woman. Like the passion of food, it has also three stages viz., high extremity, low extremity and moderateness.
High extremity is that the sexual passion overcomes the intellect and there remains no other aim before a person but to extract pleasure from women; and while in the company of such women possessing devilish attributes, it makes him unconcerned about the Hereafter, overpowers his Deen (religion) and keeps him busy in disapproved acts. The high and low extremity of sexual passion gives birth to number of immoralities e.g., the anxiety to look for the medicine that improves sexual potency; like the way some people take recourse to digestive powder or medicine to strengthen the stomach and the desire to eat more and more increases. The example of such a person is like the one who falls into the trap of beasts or snakes and when they become inattentive of him and give him a chance to run away, he in turn awakens and enrages them to attack him and when then do so, he tries to devise a method to save himself. The passion for food and sex is injurious and lethal like the beasts and snakes, and it should be considered a huge blessing if one is able to remain safe from them.
He further writes: Due to high extremity towards sexual passion some misguided people fall in love. These type of people do not know that the real purpose behind sexual intercourse is not mere pleasure but something else which they are unaware of, and in this, they have even taken the lead from the animals. Futher, an ‘Ashiq’ (lover) is not able to satisfy his lust anywhere else than with a particular woman because he thinks that he will get satisfaction only after having sex with that woman. For this purpose he tolerates every kind of disgrace and invites infamy to himself to the extent that he even accepts slavery and surrenders his intellect and vision before his sexual passion. It is worth to mention here that the man was created for all creation to submit before him. He was not created to become servant of his sexual passion and leave no stone unturned while serving it. ‘Ishq’ is another name given to the high extremity of sexual passion. It is the ailment of such a heart that is neither able to do any work and nor has any aim before it. It is at the beginning only that one can save himself from the severity of sexual passion by not looking again at any Gair-Mahram after the first unintentional look and continue with his ‘Fikr’—meditation. If the sexual passion gets aggravated, it is difficult to terminate it. Same is the case with the love of wealth, property and children that if it intensifies, it declines with difficulty. Further, up to extent, that so much interest is shown in the games like chess, dice and archery that a person does not pay due importance to any religious or worldly affair before these. These things make him uneasy and disturbed all the time. The person who cools down the fire of passion at the very beginning is like a person who does not want his horse to go inside a door and so whenever it tries to turn towards that door, he pulls it back by its rein. And the example of that person who wants to cool down the fire of passion after it blazes up is like the one who lets his horse to enter the door and then pulls it back by its tail and believes that it will not revolt. How much difference is there in these two examples as far as easiness and confusion is concerned? That is why it is better to stay cautious in the beginning itself. When an ailment attains severity, there is a need of much hard work and struggle to treat it and at times the treatment itself become so severe that it tells upon ones life. Anyway, it is very objectionable that the lust and passion overcome the intellect of a person to such an extent.
Now, the low extremity of sexual passion is that it ceases to exist i.e., a person becomes impotent and is not able to relish his wife. This is also disliked.
In between these two extremes lies the moderate way which is praiseworthy. The moderation is that a person does not adhere to sexual passion but the sexual passion itself remains obedient to the intellect and the Shariah, and while acting under their command, he restricts it by hunger and Nikaah.
Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) says:
يَا مَعْشَرَ الشَّبَابِ مَنِ اسْتَطَاعَ مِنْكُمُ الْبَاءَةَ فَلْيَتَزَوَّجْ ، وَمَنْ لَمْ يَسْتَطِعْ فَعَلَيْهِ بِالصَّوْمِ فَإِنَّهُ لَهُ وِجَاءٌ (بخاري)
“O young people! Whoever among you is able to marry, should marry, and whoever is not able to marry, is recommended to fast, as fasting will diminish his sexual passion”. (Bukhari)
It is worth to mention here that usually it is not considered necessary to take precaution from two things, though, both of them are very necessary.
Firstly, the way it is necessary for men to observe Pardah by not looking at Gair-Mahram women, similarly it is necessary and important for women not to look at Gair-Mahram men. On this topic, there is a famous Hadith quoted in Abu Dawood, Nasa’ie and Tirmidhi, which says:
عَنْ أُمِّ سَلَمَةَ قَالَتْ كُنْتُ عِنْدَ رَسُولِ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم وَعِنْدَهُ مَيْمُونَةُ فَأَقْبَلَ ابْنُ أُمِّ مَكْتُومٍ وَذَلِكَ بَعْدَ أَنْ أُمِرْنَا بِالْحِجَابِ فَقَالَ النَّبِىُّ صلى الله عليه وسلم احْتَجِبَا مِنْهُ فَقُلْنَا يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ أَلَيْسَ أَعْمَى لاَ يُبْصِرُنَا وَلاَ يَعْرِفُنَا فَقَالَ النَّبِىُّ صلى الله عليه وسلم أَفَعَمْيَاوَانِ أَنْتُمَا أَلَسْتُمَا تُبْصِرَانِهِ (أبو داؤد. نسائي. ترمزي)
Hadhrat Umm-i-Salmah (RA) narrates that, “I was with the Apostle of Allah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) while Maymunah was with him. Then Ibn Umm Maktum came. This happened when we were ordered to observe veil (purdah). The Prophet (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said: Observe veil from him. We asked: O Apostle of Allah! is he not blind? He can neither see us nor recognise us. The Prophet (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said: Are both of you blind? Do you not see him? (Abu Dawood, Nasa’ie, Tirmidhi)
After quoting this Hadith, Imaam Ghazali (RA) writes:
This Hadith proves that it is not lawful for women to sit even in the company of blind men as is the common practice in occasions where women do not observe veil from such men. Similarly it is also Haraam for a blind man to stay in company of any Gair-Mahram woman.
Another issue in relation to which necessary caution is required is the connection and attachment with juvenile, as this can also involve one in a trial. At times, a person gets involved in serious misforture because of slight carelessness. Imaam Ghazali (RA) has very nicely interpreted this, he writes:
The vice of juveniles is more serious than that of women, because of that fact that if a person gets attracted towards a woman, he can get her by performing Nikaah and satisfy his desire through lawful manner. But, it is in no way lawful to satisfy sexual passion with a juvenile. It is Haraam even to look at a juvenile. The nice looking juveniles are a medium of serious tests and tribulations. Some people possessing weak Imaan get inclined towards them and find attraction in their faces. They find it pleasing to look at the beardless faces rather than those with beard. All these are matters of tests and tribulations and one is supposed to stay away from them. (Ihya-ul-Uloom)
Calamity of sight
While commenting on the calamity of sight, he further writes:
To stare with lustful eyes is Haraam. Some people while taking it as an ordinary issue neglect it and this ogling unintentionally and unconsciously pollutes them with sins.
A Taaba’ee says:
I think that an ascetic (Zaahid) and devout (Aabid) young man will not be harmed by a beast as much as he will be by the company of a juvenile.
A very famous Muhaddith—Sufiyaan-i-Thouri (RA) says:
If a person plays with the finger or two of a juvenile’s feet with sexual passion, he will be considered a sodomist.
It is quoted from some grand predecessors that there will be three types of sodomists in this Ummah. One—those who will only ogle, two—those who will limit themselves with just touching and handshaking, three—those who will indulge in the sinful act. This proves that the calamity of sight is most severe than any other calamities. (Ihya-ul-Uloom, Vol-3)
May Allah save His slaves from this wicked calamity. It is necessary for a Muslim to adopt chastity and virtuousness and save himself from everything contrary to this, because this is what the Imaan demands and in this lies the prosperity. At this juncture, I would like to quote the summary of a topic from the book ‘Ihya-ul-Uloom’ of Hujjatul Islam Imaam Ghazali (RA), in which he has explained the virtues of saving oneself from the adultery of sex organ and that of eye, and also narrated few episodes. He says:
Know that from among all the passions, the most overwhelming passion on a man is sexual passion, and at the time of excitement, the most disobedient to intellect. Besides, the repercussions of this act are very bad up to the limit of disgracefulness and the one who indulges in it feels shame and fear. Most of the people who don’t indulge in this act is because of their weakness, fear, shame or safety of their body. None of these reasons can become a means of Thawaab (reward), because to stay away from indulging in adultery on account of these reasons is to give precedence to one pleasure out of the two. This is better than committing a sin but that pleasure is not in itself worth of Thawaab. The virtue and Thawaab is on that safety whose driving force is the fear of Allah, and this fear should evolve at such a situation when one has full control and ability to do the act, no obstacle of any kind exists and especially when he is in a state of true sexual passion. This is the status of Saadiqeen (truthful people). This is why Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said:
من عيش فكتم و عفّ فمات فهو شهيد (جامع صغير)
“He who fell in love, then concealed it and adopted virtuousness and then died, he is a Shaheed (martyr)”. (Jaam’e Sageer)
It is narrated in a Hadith that seven persons are such on whom Allah Ta’ala will provide a place under the shade of Arsh on the day when there will be no other shade i.e., the day of Qiyaamah. The one among these seven as narrated in the Hadith is:
وَرَجُلٌ دَعَتْهُ امْرَأَةٌ ذَاتُ مَنْصِبٍ وَجَمَالٍ فَقَالَ إِنِّى أَخَافُ اللَّهَ (بخاري)
“A man who is invited by a beautiful and respectable woman towards herself and he refuses her invitation by saying, I fear Allah”. (Bukhari)
The incident of Hadhrat Yousuf (AS) is very famous, who while having full control along with the desire and wish of Zulaikha, did not take even a step forward. This supreme character of Hadhrat Yousuf (AS) has been appreciated in the Holy Qur’an. As far as the chastity and virtuousness is concerned, he was the Imaam of whole mankind.
It has been narrated that Hadhrat Sulaimaan bin Yassar (RA) was a very handsome man. A wonderful and surprising incident is related about him that once he along with his companion went to perform Haj from Madina. On reaching a place namely Abwa, they made a stay. His companion took a bag and went to the market for some purchasing and left Hadhrat Sulaimaan in the tent. A woman from certain village while passing through that place saw the good looking face of Hadhrat Sulaimaan and wholeheartedly fell in love with him. The tent of Hadhrat Sulaimaan was tied at the foot of a hill while that woman was at its peak. When she saw him, she came down and went straight into his tent. She had a veil on her face and her hands were in gloves. When she removed her veil, it appeared as if moon had come out of a cloud. She was extremely beautiful and attractive and asked Hadhrat Sulaimaan to give her something. He thought that she was asking for some food. He got up and took the left over from the dining cloth and offered it to her. She said, “I am not in need of any food, I only want that which takes place between a husband and a wife”. Hadhrat Sulaimaan said, “Did the devil bring you here after seducing you?”. He lowered his head into his knees and wept loudly. When she saw him weeping like this, she felt ashamed and left. After few moments, the companion of Hadhrat Sulaimaan came back from the market, he saw that the eyes of Hadhrat Sulaimaan had swelled up because of weeping. On asking the reason, Hadhrat Sulaimaan said that he badly missed his daughter. Not believing him, his companion said, “before this you never missed your daughter, what happened all of a sudden”. When his companion stressed to know the reason, Hadhrat Sulaimaan narrated the whole episode to him. After listening, his companion started weeping. Hadhrat Sulaimah asked him the reason and he said, “I am weeping because had I been at your place, I would not have been able to reject her demand and thereby committed a sin”. For some time they both wept and then again started their journey. When he reached Makkah and after performing Tawaaf (circumambulation of Ka’ba) and Sa’ee (running between Safa and Marwa), he wrapped up his garments and sat near Hajr-i-Aswad (the black stone). While staying there he was overwhelmed by sleep and had a dream in which he saw a tall handsome man from whose body a beautiful fragrance was erupting. He asked, “Who are you?”. The young man replied, “I am Yousuf (AS)”. He again asked, “Yousuf-i-Siddiq?” (the truthful Yousuf (AS)). He replied in affirmation. Hadhrat Sulaimaan said that your incident with Zulaikha is wonderful. On this, Hadhrat Yousuf (AS) said that your incident with the woman of Abwa is more wonderful than mine.
This is the status of a person who saves himself from adultery even when being in full control to commit it. Next to him is that person who saves his eyes from indulging in this crime (i.e., avoids to gaze at Gair-Mahram). It should be noted that the eye is a gateway that leads to adultery, and since it very difficult to stop it from looking, it become more than necessary to save it. People have become careless in this regard and believe it of trivial nature. We don’t consider it so important though it is the basis of all the calamities. One is forgiven and wont be held accountable if he casts a look at someone the first time without any purpose or intention, but it is not so if he looks again.
Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said:
لك الأولى و عليك الآخرة (كنز العمال ج 5 ص 468)
“You will not be held accountable for the first gaze bur for the second, you will be answerable” (Kunzul Ummal)
Allaama Ibn Ziyaadah (RA) says, “Don’t cast your looks on a woman’s veil because this act will sow the seeds of lust in your eyes. It seldom happens that a person will not look again at a woman or a good looking juvenile after the first sight. If you unintentionally had the first look and then your temperament shows its desire for the next, establish this notion into you heart that to look again is foolishness because it will not liberate you even after that. In these situations it can happen that, either you may like that face or you may not like it. In the first case i.e., if you will like that face, your Nafs (inner self) will demand sex, and when you will not be able to fulfill it, nothing will fall into your hands except regret and deprivation. In the second case, the purpose itself will expire for which you had cast the second look i.e., to obtain enjoyment. You will not feel any attraction in an ugly face, but still there would be an addition of sin in your record book (i.e., Nama-Ae’mal). These type of sins are termed as joyless sins. So to say that by casting a second look either you will get regret or deprivation of enjoyment, and both these are useless and cause wrongdoing”.
Significance of repentance (Tawbah)
If the eyes are protected by not looking at what is prohibited then the heart will remain safe from number of calamities and this is also the highest degree of Tawfeeq (Divine help) and a cause of extreme strength.
Hadhrat Abu Bakr Abdullah al-Muzni (RA) says that a butcher fell in love with the daughter of his neighbour. Once, the parents of this girl sent her to a neighbouring colony for some job. When the butcher came to know this, he followed and stopped her at roadside and then provoked her to commit sin with him. The girl advised him not to do so and also said to him, “I have more love for you in my heart then you have for me, but I fear Allah”. The butcher said, “If you fear Allah, why shouldn’t I, how can that be?”. He repented at that place and turned back. On his way back, he felt thirsty and his thirst intensified to such an extent that he was about to die. Meanwhile, an envoy of a Prophet from among the Prophets of Bani-Isra’eel passed by and he enquired about his condition. The butcher said, “I am thirsty”. The envoy said to him, “Let’s invoke together that until we reach that particular village, the shadow of a cloud may remain on us”. The butcher said, “I don’t have any good deed that I will invoke through, so I request you to invoke”. The envoy said, “Alright! I will invoke, but you should say Amin”. The envoy started invoking and the butcher kept on saying Amin until a big lump of cloud cast its shadow on them and they started their journey. After reaching their destination, when they started to depart from each other, the lump of cloud moved along with the butcher. The envoy on seeing this asked him the reason behind it. The butcher narrated to him the incident of his repentance.
A famous noble man Hadhrat Ahmad bin Sa’eed (RA) narrates from his father that in Kufa there lived an extremely devout young man who usually spent his time in Jama Masjid. He was very tall, handsome and of very high character. A woman saw him and she fell in love with him at the first sight. For a long time the spark of love kept blowing inside her heart but she couldn’t get any opportunity to express it. One day while going to the Musjid, this woman held his way and said, “O young man! First listen to me then do whatever you wish to do”. But this young man did not say anything and moved on until he reached the Musjid. On his return, she was still there waiting for him and when this young man reached near her, she tried to talk to him. The young man said, “This is a place of ill-repute and I don’t want anybody to see me with you and defame me, so don’t hold my path and let me go”. She said, “By Allah, I didn’t stand up here because I am not aware of your status, or that I don’t know that this is a place of ill-repute. May Allah not let the people become suspicious about me. But in this very matter, the issue that incited me to meet you is that the people exaggerate any small thing, and the devout people like you are just like a mirror which gets affected even by a small cloud of dust. I just want to make a very reasonable point that I am passionately in love with you and it is only Allah Who may decide the affair between you and me”. The narrator says that the young man went straight to his home without saying any word. After reaching his home, he tried to offer Salaah but was unable concentrate on it. Under compulsion he took his pen and wrote down few lines on a piece of paper to this woman. After writing down, he came out of his home and saw that she was still there. He threw this piece of paper towards her and quickly went back inside. It was written:
“O lady! You should know that when a slave disobeys Allah, He forgives him. When he again indulges in this, He keeps it secret. When he makes it an amusement, then He sends down such a wrath that the land and the sky, the trees and the stones and even the animals shiver up. Who is there who can handle His displeasure? Whatever you said, if it is wrong, then remember the day on which the sky will melt like copper, the earth will become like carded cotton and all the mankind will fall in prostration before the Jabbar-i-Azim (The Mighty Subduer). I swear by Allah, my own condition is that I am unable to reform my own Nafs and in such a situation it is not possible for me to reform others. And if you are speaking truth, I will convey you the address of such a Tabeeb (physician) who is able to treat satisfactorily and remedially every kind of injury and ailment, and that Tabeeb is Allah, who is the Sustainer of all the world. Submit before Him and ask your desire to Him. I can’t do anything for you except to recite this Aayat:
وَأَنْذِرْهُمْ يَوْمَ الْآزِفَةِ إِذِ الْقُلُوبُ لَدَى الْحَنَاجِرِ كَاظِمِينَ مَا لِلظَّالِمِينَ مِنْ حَمِيمٍ وَلَا شَفِيعٍ يُطَاعُ () يَعْلَمُ خَائِنَةَ الْأَعْيُنِ وَمَا تُخْفِي الصُّدُورُ ()
“And warn them of the day that draws near, when hearts shall rise up to the throats, grieving inwardly; the unjust shall not have any compassionate friend nor any intercessor who should be obeyed. He knows the stealthy looks and that which the breasts conceal”. (40:18-19)
After few days that woman was again seen on the road side, when he saw her, he intended to turn back but she called him and asked, “Why are you turning back, this is the last meeting and after this we will meet only before Allah”. She wept profusely and said, “I pray to Allah in Whose hands your heart is to make it easy the difficulty that confronts you because of me”. After this she requested him for an advice. The young man said, “I only advise you to keep yourself safe from your Nafs and always remember this Aayah:
وَهُوَ الَّذِي يَتَوَفَّاكُمْ بِاللَّيْلِ وَيَعْلَمُ مَا جَرَحْتُمْ بِالنَّهَارِ
“And He it is Who takes your souls at night (in sleep), and He knows what you acquire in the day” (6:60)
The narrator says that after listening to this advise she wept profusely for a long time and when she recovered, she went to her home, prayed for a while and then died. After this the young man used to remember her and weep. The people used to say to him, what is the benefit of weeping now when previously you disappointed her. He used to reply, “I had slaughtered her desire on the very first day and I had the belief that this act will be my provision for the Hereafter, but now I fear that this provision may not turn back on me”.
The abstract of the topic
Man is a human being and hence prone to mistakes, but the sensible one is he who recognizes his mistake, repents from it and strives to reform himself. Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said:
عَنْ أَنَسٍ قَالَ قَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم كُلُّ بَنِى آدَمَ خَطَّاءٌ وَخَيْرُ الْخَطَّائِينَ التَّوَّابُونَ (ابن ماجه. مشكاة)
Hadhrat Anas (RA) narrated that Rasululah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said: “Every person is a mischief-maker and the best mischief-maker is he who repents in abundance” (Ibn Majah, Mishkaat)
The most important thing in this is that a person should never consider his sin as ordinary. Imaam Bukhari (RA) quoted a Hadith on the authority of Abdullah bin Anas (RA):
إِنَّ الْمُؤْمِنَ يَرَى ذُنُوبَهُ كَأَنَّهُ قَاعِدٌ تَحْتَ جَبَلٍ يَخَافُ أَنْ يَقَعَ عَلَيْهِ ، وَإِنَّ الْفَاجِرَ يَرَى ذُنُوبَهُ كَذُبَابٍ مَرَّ عَلَى أَنْفِهِ. (بخاري)
“A believer considers his sins as if he were sitting under a mountain which, he is afraid may fall on him; whereas the wicked person considers his sins as flies passing over his nose and he just drives them away”. (Bukhari)
So, it is necessary for a believer to repent before Allah and after that resolve firmly to desist from all kinds of sins. What a favour this is from Allah that He Himself prepares His slaves to perform Tawbah, in spite of that fact that His grandeur is Ghani (The Self Sufficient, without want) and anyone’s sins don’t concern Him anyway. If the whole world gets submerged into the sins, it will in no way matter Allah, but it is His Mercy and Kindness that He Himself induces his slaves to perform Tawbah and narrates His promises in this respect and also expresses His happiness. Look and contemplate on the following Aayaat (verses) how mercifully Allah Ta’ala invites his slaves towards Tawbah and assures His forgiveness.
اسْتَغْفِرُوا رَبَّكُمْ إِنَّهُ كَانَ غَفَّارًا
“Ask forgiveness of your Lord, surely He is the most Forgiving.” (71:10)
Again, He says at another place:
وَمَنْ يَعْمَلْ سُوءًا أَوْ يَظْلِمْ نَفْسَهُ ثُمَّ يَسْتَغْفِرِ اللَّهَ يَجِدِ اللَّهَ غَفُورًا رَحِيمًا
And whoever does evil or acts unjustly to his soul, then asks forgiveness of Allah, he shall find Allah Forgiving, Merciful. (4:110)
While commenting on this Aayat Allaama Shabbir Ahmad Uthmani (RA) writes:
By سوء and ظلم the minor and major sins are meant or سوء means those sins which agonise others e.g., to defame someone; and ظلم is— the evilness of which remain with ones own self only. Anyway, of whichever nature the sin may be, its cure is ‘Istigfaar’ (to ask forgiveness) and Tawbah (repentance). Allah Ta’ala forgives ones sins if he repents. If some people prove innocence of a criminal deliberately by fraud or prove him guiltless by mistake, it cannot reduce his crime, but if he repents, he can be forgiven.
وَهُوَ الَّذِي يَقْبَلُ التَّوْبَةَ عَنْ عِبَادِهِ وَيَعْفُو عَنِ السَّيِّئَاتِ وَيَعْلَمُ مَا تَفْعَلُونَ ()
“And He it is Who accepts repentance from His servants and pardons the evil deeds and He knows what you do”. (42:25)
قُلْ يَا عِبَادِيَ الَّذِينَ أَسْرَفُوا عَلَى أَنْفُسِهِمْ لَا تَقْنَطُوا مِنْ رَحْمَةِ اللَّهِ إِنَّ اللَّهَ يَغْفِرُ الذُّنُوبَ جَمِيعًا إِنَّهُ هُوَ الْغَفُورُ الرَّحِيمُ
“Say: O my servants! who have acted extravagantly against their own souls, do not despair of the mercy of Allah; surely Allah forgives the faults altogether; surely He is the Forgiving the Merciful”. (39:53)
أَفَلَا يَتُوبُونَ إِلَى اللَّهِ وَيَسْتَغْفِرُونَهُ وَاللَّهُ غَفُورٌ رَحِيمٌ
“Will they not then turn to Allah and ask His forgiveness? And Allah is Forgiving, Merciful”. (5:74)
أَلَمْ يَعْلَمُوا أَنَّ اللَّهَ هُوَ يَقْبَلُ التَّوْبَةَ عَنْ عِبَادِهِ وَيَأْخُذُ الصَّدَقَاتِ وَأَنَّ اللَّهَ هُوَ التَّوَّابُ الرَّحِيمُ
“Do they not know that Allah accepts repentance from His servants and takes the alms, and that Allah is the Oft-returning (to mercy), the Merciful?” (9:104)
وَإِنِّي لَغَفَّارٌ لِمَنْ تَابَ وَآمَنَ وَعَمِلَ صَالِحًا ثُمَّ اهْتَدَى
“And most surely I am most Forgiving to him who repents and believes and does good, then continues to follow the right direction”. (20:82)
Allaama Shabbir Ahmad Uthmani (RA) writes in its commentary:
How big a criminal may be, if he repents by heart and adopts the path of belief and righteousness and further remains steadfast on it until he dies, there will be no dearth of forgiveness and mercy from Allah.
There are number of Aayaat that mention this topic but here only few have been quoted. Now, some Ahaadith are being mentioned below:
عَنْ أَبِى مُوسَى عَنِ النَّبِىِّ صلى الله عليه وسلم قَالَ إِنَّ اللَّهَ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ يَبْسُطُ يَدَهُ بِاللَّيْلِ لِيَتُوبَ مُسِىءُ النَّهَارِ وَيَبْسُطُ يَدَهُ بِالنَّهَارِ لِيَتُوبَ مُسِىءُ اللَّيْلِ حَتَّى تَطْلُعَ الشَّمْسُ مِنْ مَغْرِبِهَا (مسلم)
Hadhrat Abu Musa (RA) narrated that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said, “Allah spreads His hand during the night so that the one who committed sins during the day may repent, and spreads His hand during the day so that the one who committed sins during the night may repent (this will continue) until the sun rises from the west” (Muslim)
عَنْ عَائِشَةَ زَوْجِ النَّبِىِّ صلى الله عليه وسلم إِنَّ الْعَبْدَ إِذَا اعْتَرَفَ بِذَنْبِهِ ثُمَّ تَابَ تَابَ اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ (مسند أحمد. بيهقي)
Hadhrat Ayesha (RA) says that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said, “When a slave admits his sins and then repents, Allah Ta’ala accepts his repentance” (Musnad Ahmad, Baihaqi)
How much kindness, generosity and beneficence is it that not only the sin of a person is forgiven because of repentance, but he becomes so pure and clean after it as if he has not committed any sin i.e., even the stain of that sin is washed away from his heart. A Hadith says:
عَبْدِ اللَّهِ مَسعُودٍ قَالَ قَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم التَّائِبُ مِنَ الذَّنْبِ كَمَنْ لاَ ذَنْبَ لَهُ (رواه ابن ماجه و البيهقي في شعب الإيمان)
Hadhrat Abdullah bin Masood (RA) narrated that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said, “A repentant from a sin is like the one who has not committed any sin”. (Ibn Majah, Baihaqi)
Different types of words have been narrated for repentance. The main purpose is to repent, so in whichever language anyone repents, it is correct. But, here it is worth to mention the invocation of repentance which has been declared as “Sayyidul Istigfaar” in the Hadith, and with it I end this topic.
عَنْ بُشَيْرِ بْنِ كَعْبٍ الْعَدَوِىِّ قَالَ حَدَّثَنِى شَدَّادُ بْنُ أَوْسٍ رضى الله عنه عَنِ النَّبِىِّ صلى الله عليه وسلم سَيِّدُ الاِسْتِغْفَارِ أَنْ تَقُولَ اللَّهُمَّ أَنْتَ رَبِّى ، لاَ إِلَهَ إِلاَّ أَنْتَ ، خَلَقْتَنِى وَأَنَا عَبْدُكَ ، وَأَنَا عَلَى عَهْدِكَ وَوَعْدِكَ مَا اسْتَطَعْتُ ، أَعُوذُ بِكَ مِنْ شَرِّ مَا صَنَعْتُ ، أَبُوءُ لَكَ بِنِعْمَتِكَ عَلَىَّ وَأَبُوءُ بِذَنْبِى ، اغْفِرْ لِى ، فَإِنَّهُ لاَ يَغْفِرُ الذُّنُوبَ إِلاَّ أَنْتَ
Hadhrat Shaddad bin Aus (RA) narrated that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said, “The superior ‘Istigfaar’ is that you say أللهم أنت ربي up to إلا أنت (translation) O Allah! You are my Lord and there is no god but You; it is You Who created me. I am your slave and in agreement and promise with You in conformity to my strength; I take refuge in You from the evils I have done. I admit the blessing that you have showered on me and I admit my sin that I have committed. Forgive me, there is none else who can forgive than You”.
قَالَ وَمَنْ قَالَهَا مِنَ النَّهَارِ مُوقِنًا بِهَا ، فَمَاتَ مِنْ يَوْمِهِ قَبْلَ أَنْ يُمْسِىَ ، فَهُوَ مِنْ أَهْلِ الْجَنَّةِ ، وَمَنْ قَالَهَا مِنَ اللَّيْلِ وَهْوَ مُوقِنٌ بِهَا ، فَمَاتَ قَبْلَ أَنْ يُصْبِحَ ، فَهْوَ مِنْ أَهْلِ الْجَنَّةِ (بخاري)
“If somebody recites it during the day with firm faith in it, and dies on the same day before the evening, he will be among the dwellers of Paradise; and if somebody recites it at night with firm faith in it, and dies before the morning, he will be among the dwellers of Paradise.” (Bukhari)