Sunday, 29 June 2014

Which Team are You In?

Bismillahir Rahmaanir Raheem



 By Hazrat Maulana Yunus Patel Saheb (Rahmatullahi ‘alayh)

We all know that there are certain snakes and scorpions which are extremely dangerous, and when they attack, their venom or sting causes great harm and can even lead to death. Lions, cheetahs and other wild animals attack, maim and kill. However, their harm is on the physical body – and the physical body must inevitably die. 

Then we have the snakes and scorpions and the wild animals that attack the soul and they attack the Imaan of the person. They sometimes maim and even kill the person’s Imaan and spirituality.

There is no doubt that the environment is a jungle of Fitnah and Fasaad : It is extremely dangerous, with its vicious Fitnahs.

And now we find ourselves in a period of time where we also have the missiles of Fitnah targeting the Imaan of the Muslims and bombs of Fitnah raining down upon the Muslims.

For those who want to restrain themselves and please Allah Ta’ala, these times are a real Jihaad because there are even those who are outwardly Deendaar but who advocate, promote and support these Fitnahs. 

On the outside, there is Deen, there is the garb of the pious – but the person is caught up in the same Fitnahs. So many watch on the television or go to those places… Young children have written or wives have written that the fathers or husbands, who are otherwise so Deendaar, forego their Salaah in Jamaat, or even their Salaah, because they are viewing the World Cup or the Cricket or the Rugby or other sport on television. Inna Lillahi wa inna ilayhi ra’jioon.

We all know that the World Cup is a tsunami of Fitnahs – It is an International upsurge of sins. What not takes place and happens at these events – and we lend ourselves to all of these sins. There is so much of Haraam, which is as clear as daylight – but we still justify our viewing and participation.

We should hang our heads in shame if we are projecting the image of piety to the world, but are obeying shaytaan in private. This is what is termed as hypocrisy; Nifaaq. It is the currency of the time. The person has two faces : A public face and a private face.

But we cannot hide our true selves from Allah Ta’ala.

In regard to the soccer matches, the young people will ask: “If we cannot attend and view the World Cup, what do we do?”

We have to find alternatives. There’s no other way.

We will not say that everyone must sit down in the Masjid, read Qur’aan Sharief, read Tasbeeh and do nothing else. …What is necessary and crucial is that the person runs from those environments of sinsWe have to distance ourselves from venues of sins. We have to run towards Allah Ta’ala:

  “…So flee to Allah…”
[Surah Adh-Dhāriyāt 51 : 50]

No doubt, this is a Jihad for many. But if we have love for Allah Ta’ala and Rasulullah (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam), then we would make every effort to restrain ourselves from sins, knowing that sins will bring about a destruction of our Imaan and will displease Allah Ta’ala, and cause hurt and grief to the sensitive heart of Rasulullah (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam).

With this soccer mania and frenzy, where the majority are only talking about the different teams and players and the goals they scored, the condition of this team and that team. It is just soccer, soccer, football, football – all the time. …What a waste of precious time.

So here is a young person, who was, at one time, addicted to the same. He is being encouraged to join them. The person will feel pressurized. How is he going to restrain himself?

If he is seeking Allah Ta’ala’s Pleasures, he will have to flee from that company because it is temptation towards getting caught up in Fitnah. The person will have to make new friends – friends who will take him to the Masjid, who will talk of good things, move in the direction of good deeds.

So avoid the soccer company.

Talk, eat, drink – just don’t go to any home where people will be viewing those soccer matches. If ten of them are sitting and watching …then they will be dominant against one person.

They will be screaming and jumping and they will convince the person to join in … watching a group of adult men run after a ball. Is this intelligence? …Viewing adult men kicking a ball?

Stay away from the soccer supporters and addicts, otherwise they will pull you in.

As that poet said:

“Last night, the person went to advise those who were drinking in the bar,
but when he came out, he had a wobble in his walk.”

Keep yourself occupied with the permissible and Mubaah…

Company is extremely important. It is for these reasons that Rasulullah (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) said: “A person is on the Deen (way of life) of his friend, so every one of you should look at who he befriends.”[1] 

We need to be very, very careful and very cautious regarding who we mix with and integrate with.

…If a huge python is approaching us, and we can see it coming closer, will we remain where we are, or will we look for the nearest exit? Will we admire skin of the snake and go towards it, to touch and feel it?

In all those venues of sins, where filthy films are screened, or people are dancing and partying, drinking and committing other sins, if someone suddenly starts screaming: “Fire! Fire!”, then is everyone going to continue with the dance and the party and the sports? Or are they going to dash for the doors and exits?

If someone announces that there is a bomb in the area, in the vicinity and it has been activated, will the person remain there to see whether it is true or not?

We are so careful and cautious about our physical health and well-being, and the protection of our lives. There should also be caution and concern for our Imaan – to a far greater extent.

…So in this regard also, there is nothing better than to turn towards Allah Ta’ala and enjoy Sukoon (tranquillity) in life.

In the midst of Fitnah also, the person can enjoy Sukoon. Although so much Haraam is taking place, all around, but the condition of the person will be like the waterproof watch.

If a person dives deep down in the ocean, that watch, which is water-proof, will not be affected by the water, because water cannot enter that watch. Allah Ta’ala will make the person’s heart like that. All the madness and hubbub will not enter that heart, when that heart has been placed in the protection of Allah Ta’ala.

In this same football match, we can take some lesson. If the one side has scored two goals and there is still ten minutes to go till the final whistle, those players won’t relax. They won’t say: “We already have two goals, why must we worry?” They say: “Ten minutes to go - we don’t know what will happen in the ten minutes.”

In the ten minutes, anything can happen. The opposition can score more goals.

If it is a major match, of the kind that will be played in this World Cup - all teams are going to be alert and sharp, and will protect their goal. Even if they have scored two or three goals, but there are ten minutes to go, each team will go all-out until the final whistle is blown.

In a similar vein, the Mu’min has to be alert and sharp. He keeps a check that nafs and shaytaan are not attacking his Imaan, and he continues in the obedience of Allah Ta’ala, until the final whistle is blown – so to say – until death comes.

 “And serve you Lord, until there comes unto you the hour that is Certain (i.e. Death).”

[Surah Al-Hijr 15 : 99 ]

Like how those players protect their goal, so the Believer is the goalkeeper of his heart and he protects his heart. He does not allow shaytaan to infiltrate or gain the upper-hand, and this continues life-long.

Just a few days of Mujahada – and really, it is a few days. All these storms will soon pass – the days will fly. Thereafter, everything gets back to routine, and it will be then that people will realise the restlessness, the blunders that they have made, and the other kinds of problems they will then face.

And the government will also realise what it has done, and how much was wasted. The billions and billions that they could have used to build thousands of homes, and done so much else.

So this is my message: Don’t feel that it is an impossible to avoid. Don’t think: It cannot be avoided.

It is not that difficult. We avoid so many other things. Why can we not avoid this?

Look at the restlessness that these events bring - for the whole thirty days or thirty five days. May Allah Ta’ala save me, save you and protect the Ummah at large.

…Don’t look at what people are doing, and don’t argue and fight with others. So many are listing the “benefits” and “virtues” of the World Cup. …Allah Ta’ala’s Shaan is sometimes Jalaali, sometimes Jamaali. We don’t know which Shaan of Allah Ta’ala is focused when. Therefore, we have to be very, very careful and cautious.

Sometimes, a person believes: My Allah is extremely happy with me, because He is giving me plentiful to eat, and drink, and wear, and travel around. I have a good car, good home, and everything....But it could be Istidraaj – It could be that Allah Ta’ala gives everything, and in the midst of all the Haraam enjoyment, Allah Ta’ala seizes and punishes.

What will we earn of Deen and Aakhirah in all this time spent in these sporting events, in hours and hours, days and days watching men run after a ball - especially those, who will shuttle from this end to that end, this province to that province, and this stadium to that stadium? And after that, the discussions will centre around the same thing - 24 hours of the day - the person will be engaging in absolute futility.

‘Dunya’ is what makes the person forget Allah Ta’ala and in that forgetfulness and heedlessness, he wastes his time and chases after temporary pleasures.

Ghaflat (heedlessness) is the hen that lays the eggs of sins. 

Allah Ta’ala has given everybody intellect, intelligence - put it to use.

When anyone is engaged in uselessness and spends his hours and hours in this manner, it is a clear sign that Allah Ta’ala’s gaze of Rahmat has been turned away from this person.

Now can that person then enjoy peace of mind, contentment, satisfaction? Will he experience these blessings? Even plentiful of wealth will bring nothing but restlessness. It will be like the flood waters - which brings Bilharzia with it. Although the waters are plentiful, it carries sickness.

When we talk about the evils, we talk about it in general. We do not point a finger at any particular person, nor do we say or believe that he is going to go to Jahannam, or he will suffer the Azaab of Allah Ta’ala, because of whatever he does. We are not the Judge. Allah Ta’ala is. We have no right to make such deductions. We do not know when that person will make sincere Taubah from his sins, and become a Wali of Allah Ta’ala.

 “…Verily Allah loves those who repent…”
[Surah Al-Baqarah 2 : 222]

Yes, we can speak about general conditions and this is what we are doing, and we are doing so to warn and caution and fulfil the duty of Amr bil Ma’roof and Nahy anil Munkar.

In the Ahaadeeth, we find that Nabi (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) would say: “When people will do this…,” “When people will engage in this…,” “when people will engage in that…” - this will happen, that will happen, that will happen.

Of course, we must look at our weaknesses too. Whilst trying to take care of the spiritual needs of others, we must not forget our own spiritual needs.

So the message is this : Avoid the company that takes you away from Allah Ta’ala; avoid the venues, and avoid the updates in the media and on social networks, which will tempt you to join in. Flee from anything that opens the door to Allah Ta’ala’s displeasure. Keep the company of those who will take you closer to Allah Ta’ala and keep occupied in what is good and Mubaah (permissible).

May Allah Ta’ala grant us all the Taufeeq and understanding, and may Allah Ta’ala bless us with such love for Him that we don’t move in the direction of His Displeasure – and we work towards our meeting with Him.

[1] Abu Dawud / Tirmidhi

Thursday, 26 June 2014

World Cup | The Spiritual Harms

Bismillahir Rahmaanir Raheem

[This article was prepared before the World Cup 2010,
which was hosted by South Africa. The advices relate and apply to all sports events, which are in conflict with Islamic teachings.]

The hype and talk presently is the World Cup. Soccer-mania has gripped the mind, the heart, the speech, the time and the money of many, many Muslims.

And these many, many Muslims argue: “It’s ONCE IN A LIFETIME…We are the HOST country … It’s the World Cup which cannot be missed at any cost…”.

And we naively believe that these reasons give us the go-ahead to support, promote and participate.

But there is one serious fact that makes us unsuitable and incompatible for what I would describe as an International “upsurge of sins” – and that reason is: We are Muslims. And we are very fortunate that we are Muslims. As such, there is no compatibility between a Muslim and sin.

Let us discuss why we, as Muslims, cannot and should not align ourselves to the World Cup and other such sporting events.

Let us read with an open heart and mind.


1.)                SALAAH

It is a common observance, that many, many Muslims are totally neglectful of Salaah when it comes to International, National or local sporting events.

Even those who have some link with the Masaajid, will choose to forego Salaah in Jamaat and even the Salaah itself, so as not to miss a moment in watching men run after a ball. Men, running after a ball – Is this intelligent?

Let us relate this to real life and the inevitable: How will this benefit us in this world and the hereafter? Will any one of these sports players be able to intercede on our behalf, before Allah Ta’ala, when we have to account for our actions, for our indulgence in futile and even Haraam activities?

Our Nabi (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) said: “…Do not forgo Salaah intentionally, lest you should get out of the fold of Islam. Do not perpetrate disobedience to Allah, lest you deserve His Wrath…”

Rasulullah (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) also said: “The dividing line between Kufr and Imaan is Salaah.” And : “A person who has missed one Salaah is like one who has lost all his family and wealth.”

Just as we would be grief-stricken at the loss of all of our beloved family members and the loss of all of our wealth, properties, and everything else, similarly should we grieve over losing even ONE Salaah?

Those few who do perform Salaah at the stadium or grounds, whilst the shouting, screaming, music, drink and other sins are being engaged in simultaneously, should think for themselves of what a display of hypocrisy they make. Because that is exactly what it is: Hypocrisy.

2.)               HERO-WORSHIPPING

Allah Ta’ala mentions in the Qur`aan Shareef, in Surah Munafiqoon:

“But honour belongs to Allah, His Messenger and the Believers...”
[Surah Munafiqoon  63 : 8]

And in Surah An-Nisaa:

 ‘…To those who take for friends unbelievers rather than Believers: is it honour they seek among them? Nay, - all honour is with Allah.’

To deal honestly and truthfully with disbelievers or to assist the poor and needy amongst them, are from the teachings of Islam.

However, to integrate with them in such a manner, that we lose our Islamic identity or give up on our Islamic culture is prohibited because this is extremely harmful to one’s Imaan.

Many have given up Imaan and Islam due to very close friendship and relationship with those who do not believe in Allah Ta’ala, His Final Messenger (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) and the Day of Judgement.

…So we find people going absolutely crazy and wild over soccer players, cricket players and their likes. And one wonders, what is all the clamour and fuss about... when their “outstanding” achievement in life seems to be, kicking, throwing or hitting a ball?  Does this call for hero-worship? Is this our shallow understanding of success as Muslims?

Do we not know that the most successful of all people are the Ambiyaa and their followers? Are we even aware of the tremendous successes of the Sahabah? They were MEN. And Brave Men. Their history, their feats, their conquests drown out the thousands of insignificant goals scored by soccer players.

In fact, there cannot be any comparison and likeness. The lives of the Sahabah (رَضِىَ الله عَنْهُمْ) were constructive and productive – for their Deen and Aakhirah, as well as for those who emulate them. The lives of these players are destructive to their hereafter, as well as for those who are obsessed with them and emulate them.

We should reflect over our obsession, veneration and craze of film-stars, sport-stars and others who are presently the enemies of Allah Ta’ala. …A warning has been sounded, directing us to make sincere Taubah.

Allah Ta’ala states in the Qur`aan Shareef:

‘O People of Imaan! Do not take My enemies and your enemies as friends, inclining towards them with love. Verily, they have rejected the truth which has come to you (from your Rabb)…’
[Surah Mumtahina 60 : 1]

We seem to very easily forget that we are Muslims and all Muslims have dangerous enemies: So whilst our enemies shrewdly convince us to spend thousands of Rands, waste our energy and time on useless, futile sports such as the World Cup and other sporting events, they gleefully bomb, kill, rape, oppress and harass our brothers and sisters in other parts of the world … but we are so intoxicated with World Cups, cricket and soccer matches, that we don’t even know our enemies have deceived us!

Have we not witnessed enough enmity in Occupied Palestine, in Pakistan, Kashmir, Kosovo, Iraq, Afghanistan, Sudan, Somalia and other parts of the world? Those who were considered friends and companions were the first to assault, kill, maim and even rape our Muslim brothers and sisters, for no other reason than that they are Believers in Allah Ta’ala. …Have we not taken any lesson? Have we not witnessed the blood of the Muslims flowing in Bosnia, like rivers?

When we claim to have love for Allah Ta’ala, how can we love these types of sporting events?

Allah Ta’ala advises us:

“O you who Believe! Take not for friends unbelievers rather than Believers : do you wish to offer Allah and open proof against yourselves?”

In other words, we should not make the unbelievers our bosom pals.

Once again, it does not mean that we should not treat them with kindness, deal honestly and assist when there is need. …However: Will participation and support in the World Cup attract them towards Islam?

3.)               MUSIC

Almost every venue, event and occasion today seems to demand “music” as part of the entertainment. As Muslims, we know fully well, that music is not the “pleasure” of a true believer because Nabi (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) specifically mentioned that one of his objectives was to destroy musical instruments.

Rasulullah (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) said: “My Rabb has commanded me to destroy all musical instruments…”  and also: “Music causes hypocrisy to grow in the heart just as water causes crops to grow.”[1]

According to another Hadeeth of Nabi (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam): ‘Music is from shaytaan and accommodating it in anyway is Nifaaq (hypocrisy).’

One of our pious elders (رَحْمَةُ اللهِ عَلَيْهِ) warned about the harms of music: “Beware of music because music reduces modesty and shame, it increases lust and destroys one’s dignity and respect. Its effect is like the effect of alcohol.”

Then, would it be morally correct for a MUSLIM to be present at an event where music is ‘a must have’?

4.)               ALCOHOL

The Ahadith make mention : “Wine is the gatherer of sin.”[2], “Wine is the leader of all indecency and is from among the major sins…” [3]

Nabi (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) also said : “Abstain from consuming wine, for verily it is the key to all evil.”[4]

Every person that is associated to alcohol – be it the manufacturer, the one who transports, the one who sells, buys or serves comes under the curse of Allah Ta’ala.[5] And those who keep company and incline towards the transgressors have to contend with the same consequences, for Allah Ta’ala warns us:

“And do not incline towards the wrongdoers, lest the fire should catch you, and you have no supporters other than Allah, then you should not be helped.”
[Surah Hud 11 : 113]

5.)               ZINA (ADULTERY / FORNICATION)

Allah Ta’ala says :

“And come not near to Zina. Verily it is a shameful and evil path.”
[Surah Al- Isra 17 : 32]

It is a very evident fact that these events promote Zina in abundance. Besides adultery of the eyes which is also categorized as zina and which is very common at these types of venues, with the indecent and revealing attire, there is actual zina that is being promoted and advertised.

With the thousands of prostitutes who are visiting our country and the thousands more who are local – what else can be expected, except an escalation in adultery and fornication and a much higher risk of very severe punishment descending...  (May Allah Ta’ala protect us from His punishment)

The summary and outline of various Ahaadeeth, is that plague, poverty and diseases which were unheard of previously, earthquakes, drought and destruction, birth of illegitimate children, and even escalation of deaths will follow in the wake of adultery and immorality.

If a person commits adultery, then the priceless and invaluable commodity of Imaan is removed from his body. Hazrat Abu Hurairah (Radhiyalluhu ‘anhu) reports that Nabi (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam said: ‘Allah Ta’ala removes the Imaan of that person who drinks wine or engages in adultery like how one of you removes his shirt from his head’.[6]

Then what will be the condition of the person who dies whilst committing zina?


Allah Ta’ala states explicitly :

  “…And do not squander recklessly. Surely, squanderers are brothers to shayateen, and shaytaan is very ungrateful to his Lord.”
[Surah Bani Israeel 17 : 26/27]

Spending R800 or R1000, whether more or less, on one ticket – and we know many are spending much, much more, on many tickets - is money wasted, and wastage and squandering are categorized as sin in Islam – whether on that which is permissible or otherwise. Moreover, the sin is compounded when it is being spent to view something at a place hosting a combination of evils.

Besides the tickets for the various matches, much more money will be spent on travel and accommodation – with airfares and rates going through the roof.

Consider how many loaves of bread, how many litres of milk or necessities of life, could have been provided for thousands who live below the bread line or thousands more who are in dire need of medical assistance… How can we be so complacent when so many are without food, water, electricity, medicine and other needs?

Doesn’t our Imaan and conscience trouble us in the least?

Wastage and extravagance are a cause of drought, high cost living and other forms of punishment, as drawn from the Ahadeeth – and it is what we are seeing all around us.

7.)               DRESS

Islam has gifted us with a dress code, which identifies us as Muslims – which makes us flag-bearers of Islam, representatives of Nabi (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) and Inviters to Islam. We have been expressly forbidden from adopting any semblance with the cultural or religious dressing style of people of other faiths..

By wearing soccer t-shirts, caps, bags with the 2010 football logos clearly indicates our love and support for the event and the culture. Nabi (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) said: “The one who imitates others is not of us.”[7] And: “Whoever imitates a nation is from amongst  them.”[8]

We are the nation of Islam, and should be rightly proud of our beautiful culture and dress because it is the culture and dress of the greatest after Allah Ta’ala, Rasulullah (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam). …It is the height of foolishness to exchange diamonds for stones.

8.)               MIXED GATHERINGS

The disbelievers have no concept of segregation. They advocate mixed gatherings because it facilitates more sins and immorality. It works in their favour because there is easy gratification of sensual desires and sinful pleasures.

The Shari’ah instructs us: ‘It is not permissible to be present in a gathering where Allah Ta’ala is being disobeyed.’


Allah Ta’ala mentions in the Qur’aan Shareef:

“Do you then think that we created you in jest and that you would not be brought back to us (for an account)?”
[Surah Mu`minoon 23 :115]

Our purpose for being sent to this world is definitely not play and amusement.

  “We created not the heavens, the earth and all between them, merely in (idle) sport.”
[Surah Ad-Dukhaan 44:38]

However, Allah Ta’ala and His Rasul (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) do not deprive us of enjoyment and entertainment. The Shari’ah and the Sunnah accommodate and give  guidance for a Muslim with regards to Halaal, permissible entertainment, humuor, laughter, play and relaxation. However there is certainly no scope for events that feature Haraam indulgences.

Moreover, deliberate and planned sins do not feature in a Muslim’s life.

The reality of the “World Cup” and other national and International sporting events, is that they are a dangerous fusion of major sins.

And when sins increase and multiply then we invite a punishment in proportion to that disobedience. …Haven’t we taken lesson from Tsunamis, Gale-force winds, Hurricanes and Earthquakes that left nothing but devastation in their wake? Are we immune to such disaster? Are we safe from punishment? 

It is reported that once Amr Ibn Absa (رَضِىَ الله عَنْهُ) asked Nabi (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) which Hijrat (migration) is the best and he said: “That you leave what your Lord dislikes.”

One of our great Scholars had said very aptly: “It baffles me to see a people who are advised to get their provision and are called upon that the departure time is due, yet they sit down playing.”

Our boarding passes were given to us the moment we entered this world … and that boarding pass is for boarding the flight of death. We have been informed and advised of the long journey ahead and the much needed provision for the journey – but how strange, that we choose to while away our time and accumulate nothing for what lies ahead. 

As has been said: “The knife is being sharpened, and the oven is being heated up, yet the ram is still eating the fodder.”

The knife of death has been sharpened, our graves have been selected and are waiting for us to take residence in them. …Despite knowing this, we “graze” complacently in disobedience – unconcerned that that knife is ready to strike us at any time. 

Allah Ta’ala states :

“O People of Imaan! Save yourselves and your families from a fire whose fuel is men and stones…”
[Surah At-Tahreem 66 : 6]
“Your (real) friends are (no less than) Allah, His Apostle, and the (fellowship of) Believers, - those who establish regular prayers, and regular charity, and they bow down humbly (in worship).
As for those who turn (for friendship) to Allah, His Rasul and the (fellowship of) Believers – it is the fellowship of Allah that must certainly triumph.”
[Surah Maa`idah 5 : 58/ 59]

Of course, all that has been stated will not go down well with everyone. It is for those who want to be good ambassadors of Islam, pleasing Allah Ta’ala and His Beloved Rasul (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam).

This article is for my own reflection and an invitation to my Muslim brothers and sisters to reflect with an open mind. I make Dua that Allah Ta’ala protects me and the Ummah from all fitnah.

 ‘Whoever recommends and helps a good cause becomes a partner therein; and whoever recommends and helps an evil cause shares in its burden…’
[Surah An-Nisaa 4 : 85]

by Hazrat Maulana Yunus Patel Saheb (Rahmatullahi 'alayh)

[1] Bayhaqi, Shu’ab al-Imaan
[2] Daylami
[3] Al Mu’jamul Kabir of Imam Tabarani (Rahmatullahi ‘alayh)
[4] Mustadrak Hakim
[5] Ibn Majah
[6] Mustadrak Hakim, vol.1 pg. 22
[7] Sunan Tirmidhi, Hadith: 2695
[8] Sunan Abi Dawud, Hadith: 4027