There are a few questions regarding Islam and the myths amongst non-believers. I would like them to be explained so that I would be able to respond and explain the true message to the non-belivers.
What is the wisdom and true reasoning behind it being haraam to listen to music,T.v, and playing musical instruments?
When asked if Muslims have arranged marriages, what sould be our reply?
When asked why Muslim women wear Hijab, what is a good way to explain that we protect ourselves by wearing Hijab?
I have heard a non-believer saying that when adultery is committed, the Islamic Law is that only the woman receives the punishment and not the man; the non-believer said this regarding an incident which occurred somewhere; I am not sure exactly where. I would like to know the authentic Islamic ruling when adultery is committed.
What should a Muslim reply to a non-believer, if he/she says that Muslims hate Christians and Jews?
Jazakallah for your time. And may Allah continue to grant you the strengh to do Deeni work. Ameen.
Wa Alaikum as Salaam,
First of all, it must be explained to non Muslims, that Muslims follow the teachings of the Holy Quran and the last Prophet, Muhammad (SAS). They do not compromise in these teachings and they do not alter nor violate these teachings. Just as the non Muslims would adhere to their religious scriptures, so too, Muslims would adhere to their religious teachings.
From among these sacred teachings, the Prophet Muhammad (SAS) has mentioned that music and musical instruments are unlawful to play or listen to. In this regard, the Prophet (SAS) is reported to have said, ‘There are two sounds that are cursed in this life and in the Hereafter, Musical instruments in joy and happiness and wailing in adversity’. (Maj’ma’ Az Zawa’id).
It should be noted that besides Islam, Christianity had also condemned music and singing. In this regard, scholars have cited the verse of the Bible which states:-
‘Take thou away from me the noise of thy songs; for I will not hear the melody of thy viols’. (Amos 5:23. King James version- Slippery Stone pg. 93) Another passage states:-Woe unto them that rise up early in the morning, that they may follow string drink’ that continue until night, till wine inflame them! And the harp, and the viol, the tabret, and pipe and wine, are in their feasts: but they regard not the work of the Lord, neither consider the operation of his hand’s. (Isaiah 5:11-12 King James version- Slippery Stone pg. 93).
While writing about the ‘Church’ and music, historian Dickinson writes,’ Early Church leaders considered it profane to use ‘the sensuous nerve-exciting effects of instrumental sound in their mystical, spiritual worship’. (Dickinson, Music in the History of the Western Church, 54-55 – Slippery Stone pg.98).
Girardeau has also pointed out, ‘it deserves serious consideration, moreover, that notwithstanding the ever-accelerated drift towards corruption in worship as well as in doctrine and government, the Roman Catholic Church did not adopt this corrupt practice (of Musical instruments) until about the middle of the thirteenth Century’. (Girardeau, Instrumental Music, 158-159, – Slippery Stone pg.98).
The above is written in order to show that besides Islam, Christianity has also condemned Music. This goes to show that there has to be something which is totally wrong with music and musical instruments that two major religions have outrightly condemned it.
Enjoyment of music can only be done through the faculty of hearing. This faculty is a great favour of Allah which has been given to be used in a way that one is always rightly guided. If it is not used properly to one’s advantage, then it can take one to destruction.
Believers are required to use this faculty to listen to that which strengthens their faith and remind them of the realities of this life and the hereafter. It is about this quality of listening to the correct thing, that Allah says about the believers, ‘When they hear what has been sent down to the Messenger, you will see their eyes flowing with tears because of the truth they have recognized. They say, ‘Our lord, we have believed. So, record us with those who bear witness’ (Sura Al Ma’idah verse 83).
This shows that the believers are those who use their faculty of hearing for listening to that which increases their faith (in Allah) and reminds them of the hereafter. Along with this, they also refrain from listening to vain talks and speeches and stay away from listening to that which does not bring any benefit to them. About this, Allah says ‘When they (the believers) hear vain (useless) talk, they turn away from it’. (Sura Al Qasas verse 55).
These and many other evidences are given in Islam to show the prohibition of music and musical instruments.
Besides the angle of a religious prohibition, music and musical instruments are seen as such things that bring about feelings and emotions in a person that lead him/her to many wrongs. Music has many negative influences on a person and causes one to stray from good conduct. It incites immorality and indecency and stimulates promiscuous behaviour. The manner in which women singers behave and dance, and the conduct of male singers, are sufficient to recognise the evils of music. It is known that certain types of music hypnotises the listeners to such extent that they harm themselves by cutting their hands, without being aware that they are harming themselves.
Music has also become a way of praising and worshipping the devil as seen in the behaviour of those involved. It also portrays a lot of vulgarity which we see daily from many of our youths who have been captivated by music and musical instruments.
- As for television, this has become a media of nothing but vulgarity, indecent and promiscuous behaviour. Most of the contents aired on television are filled with violence, nudity, bad conduct, erotic behaviour, lewdness and many other harmful and destructive contents. Many non Muslims writers have written at length concerning the harms of television.
Islam, being a religion of purity, chastity and high morals would not grant an allowance for such.
- Muslims have arranged marriages, and there is nothing wrong with this. In fact, this used to be practice by the upright Christians and Jews long ago. Any boy or girl who has modesty and chastity, will not find himself/herself dating/courting/or going around with the opposite sex. The modesty and upright conduct of an individual prevents him/her from doing this.
In fact, it is clear to us that those from the past who got married on account of arranged marriages, had better, happier and longer marriages than others. Today, the marriages of many people who have grown ‘to be in love’ as boyfriends and girlfriends, do not last for any considerable time. The divorce rate of marriages today is extremely high. At present, many young girls and boys actually live together with each other before becoming married. Chastity and virginity are now absent from the lives of people. It is for this reason, many want the liberty and freedom ‘to do as they want’ with ‘whomsoever they want’ and when they are satisfied, they separate and move on with their lives.
It should be understood that ‘arranged marriages’ does not mean ‘forced marriages’. It simply means that parents of the boy/girl will look for a suitable match for their child and when that match is found, both parties are then introduced to each other. Upon this, they may proceed in arranging to become married. If they are not interested in each other, then on one (from among the parents) can force them to marry.
Finding a suitable match for a son or daughter is the responsibility of the parents and not the boy or girl. Islam does not allow the free, and open relationship between boys and girls like ‘courting’, ‘dating’ etc. These are filled with many evils and wrongs which are visible to everyone.
- With respect to a woman wearing hijab, this is a way of dress that protects the chastity of a woman. In Islam, a woman is one who is well-respected and honored. She loves privacy and does not like to reveal her body to others. This is something which is natural in women. Islam, recognising the position of a woman, has outlined the law of hijab so that through this, a woman can continue to enjoy her privacy and will protect her honor and self respect. Islam does not allow women to reveal their beauty and parts of their bodies publicly. Covering oneself properly is a means of protecting one’s chastity and purity, and is a clear indication of the character of that woman who covers herself properly.
Covering the head and the other parts of the body (as in the case of hijab) for women has always been a sign of piety and religiousness and a sign of decency and pureness of a woman, which is evident from even the Jewish and Christian teachings.
- When adultery is committed by a Muslim woman and man, then both of them will receive the punishment when the act has become proven beyond the shadow of a doubt. It is not only the woman. The man must also be punished.
- With respect to the statement that Muslims hate Christians and Jews, this is a totally false statement. In fact, based on that which is seen, heard and visible to all, it may be more correct to say that it is the Christians and Jews who hate the Muslims. A Muslim will speak good of Jesus, but Christians and Jews will condemn Prophet Muhammad (SAS). Muslims have never attacked Christians or Jews. It is the Christians and Jews who have attacked Islam by burning the Quran, making anti Islam movies, drawing cartoon characters to degrade the Prophet Muhammad (SAS) and by attacking the character of the Prophet (SAS). Muslims believe firmly in the truth and in the prophethood of Moosa (AS) and Isa (AS), but the Jews and Christians condemn Prophet Muhammad (SAS) as an imposter.
History bears witness to the fact that wherever Christians and Jews ruled and governed a country, they got rid of the Muslims and prohibited them from practicing Islam. However, wherever Muslims ruled and governed, they always accommodated the Christians and Jews and allowed them to build churches and synagogues for their worship. There are many other incidents which can be quoted to show that it is the Jews and Christians who hate the Muslims and not the opposite.
And Allah knows best,
Mufti Waseem Khan