THE PRINCIPLE OF LOVE & DESIRE: The Shaytan Beautifies the Haram || The Shaytan Makes it Seem Halal

The Shaytan Beautifies the Haram & Makes it Seem Halal

It is necessary to know that the slave deserves the punishment for shirk and other lesser sins on the condition of receiving and under- standing the message of the foundations of Islam and its branches. When ignorance became common and widespread, the Shaytan beautified the prohibited deeds that Allah hates, and many of the people did not know that these actions were forbidden and hated by Allah; in fact, many believed that these actions were loved by Allah and commanded by Him, and that these actions could contain certain rewards. These people follow their doubts and desires. They may even know that something is forbidden, but they deceptively and hypocritically present it in a way that it appears permissible. These are not the believers whom Allah and his Messenger love, who perform bad deeds believing them to be impermissible, who hate wicked deeds and are fearful and hopeful.


These situations contain three categories. We shall mention examples of that pertaining to forbidden actions, about which Allah, the Most High, said:

قُلْ إِنَّمَا حَرَّمَ رَبِّيَ الْفَوَاحِشَ مَا ظَهَرَ مِنْهَا وَمَا بَطَنَ وَالْإِثْمَ وَالْبَغْيَ بِغَيْرِ الْحَقِّ وَأَن تُشْرِكُوا بِاللَّهِ مَا لَمْ يُنَزِّلْبِهِ سُلْطَانًا وَأَن تَقُولُوا عَلَى اللَّهِ مَا لَا تَعْلَمُونَ 

Say (O Muhammad): "The things that my Lord has indeed forbidden are al-fawahish (great evil sins, every kind of unlawful sexual intercourse, etc.) whether committed openly or secretly, sins (of all kinds), unrighteous oppression, joining partners (in worship) with Allah for which He has given no authority, and saying things about Allah of which you have no knowledge." [Surah al-A'raf 7:33

Therefore, Allah the Exalted forbade al-fawahish, as mentioned. And Allah, the Most High, said:

وَالَّذِينَ هُمْ لِفُرُوجِهِمْ حَافِظُونَ إِلَّا عَلَى أَزْوَاجِهِمْ أَوْ مَا مَلَكَتْ أَيْمَانُهُمْ فَإِنَّهُمْ غَيْرُ مَلُومِينَ 

And those who guard their chastity (i.e., private parts, from illegal sexual acts), except from their wives or (the captives and slaves) that their right hands possess; for them, they are free from blame. [Surah al-Mu'minün 23:5-6]

So only a woman to whom one is married or a woman whom his right hand possesses is permissible for him. Allah mentions the conditions for that to be permissible in His saying:

وَغَيْرَ مُسَافِحَاتٍ وَلَا مُتَّخِذَاتِ أَخْدَانٍ 

...not adulterous, nor taking boyfriends. [Surah an-Nisa' 4:25]

And His saying:

الْغَيْرَ مُسَافِحِينَ وَلَا مُتَّخِذِي أَخْدَانٍ

...not engaging in unlawful sexual intercourse or taking (secret) lovers. [Surah al-Ma'idah 5:5]

It is reported by al-Bukhari on the authority of 'A'ishah that before the Jahiliyyah period, there were four types of marriage: the women of the flags*1, who were prostitutes, and the paternity of a child would be decided in their case by a qa'if.*2 Another type was a woman who had intercourse with a small group of men and the paternity would be determined by the woman's choice. She also mentioned the istibda' marriage,*3 and the last type was the tradi- tional form of marriage that Allah permitted.*4

Hence, the Shaytan made something haram that resembled something halal; even though it was given a different name, there was some overlap in meaning, so Allah permitted a man to have intercourse with his wife or his female slave and forbade the taking of secret boyfriends or girlfriends, even though the relationship between them may be similar in both cases.

Another example of this that is less obvious are men who befriend women or young men and say this is friendship for Allah's sake (or brotherhood) as long as there is no fornication like between boyfriends and girlfriends. This is what they display to people, and the people accept and support it. These people think that if they love how a young man or a woman looks due to their beauty, then this is a form of loving Allah, as long as there is no fornication.

This is clear misguidance, error, and a distortion of the religion, because they take something disliked by Allah and claim it to be something loved by Him, and this is a form of shirk, and the one who is loved and aggrandized in this manner is a taghut (false deity).

The belief that the enjoyment of loving, looking at, or touching a young man or woman who is not your wife is for Allah and is loving for His sake is disbelief and shirk, like the belief that the love of idols is love for Allah's sake, and that coming together for fornication is cooperating upon goodness and piety or is a form of worship for Allah's sake, and so on.

To believe that these things which Allah and His Messenger clearly forbade could be from Allah's religion is a form of shirk and disbelief.

There are things that can cause doubts if encountered by those who do not possess knowledge, such as the incorrect notion held by many so-called scholars and worshipers that listening to music could be worship, and many of those who are weak in knowledge and iman think that enjoying the beauty of these men and women could be a form of worship.

After this misguidance and what it contains of temptation, they are four categories:

1) A group who believe that this is for Allah and limit their actions to that, as is often found among many of the common soldiers and the ascetics.

2) A group who know that this is not for Allah's sake, yet they promote this out of hypocrisy and treachery. These people are better than the last group from the aspect that they are more likely to repent from these actions, but are worse from the perspective that they perpetrate what they know to be forbidden.

3) A group whose objective is the major sins that lie behind that, so sometimes they will act like those oppressive people who believe that this love is for Allah, so they do something for Allah and they do this for other than Allah, and sometimes they act like one of the hypocritical ghawin who display that this love is for Allah, but actually they are acting for Shaytan. Therefore, they combine this lie and this major sin. They compare their friend- ship and brotherhood to marriage due to the resemblance of the joining and coupling that is involved and the pairing that occurs in a marriage, and they resemble those who love one another for Allah's sake, except that those who believe in Allah have a deeper love for Allah.

The love of those who love one another for the sake of Allah is aggrandized, strengthened, and made firm, unlike the satanic friendship, which is built upon wickedness. This has become common and widespread to the extent that people have even called it marriage, and they say, "They have married," as say some of the criminals, sinners, and hypocrites who belittle Allah's verses, and those who are present laugh and find their jokes amusing.

The belief that this is love for Allah's sake results in those criminals, sinners, and hypocrites saying: "The beardless is loved by Allah, and those who wear beards are His enemy." And that amuses them and they laugh, and this leads some of those who shave their beards to believe it to be true and to think they are from among those about whom the Prophet said:

إِذَا أَحَبَّ اللَّهُ عَبْدًا نَادَى جِبْرِيلَ: إِنِّي قَدْ أَحْبَبْتُ فُلَانًا.

When Allah loves a slave, He calls Jibril, (saying), "Indeed, I love so-and-so.*5

So they become excited, thinking that they and the ghawin are loved.

The other type of halal intercourse is the possession of your right hand, so a woman may own a man or a man may own a boy, and this ownership is the same as when a man owns a slave girl, so a woman may think that she may enjoy her slave the way a man may enjoy his slave girl; she may even interpret the Qur'an to include that in Allah's saying:

أَوْ مَا مَلَكَتْ أَيْمَانُهُمْ

...or (the captives and slaves) that their right hands possess. [Surah al-Mu'minun 23:6]

As 'Umar bin al-Khattab was informed of a woman who had married her slave and she used this verse to justify that, so he divorced them and reprimanded him, and he said, "Woe to you! This is only for men, not for women." *6

Likewise, many of the ignorant from among the Turks and others own men whom they love and enjoy (i.e., they have sexual relation- ships with them), and they misuse the verse "except for their wives or (the captives and slaves) that their right hands possess" [Surah al-Mu'minun 23:6], and it is well established that this is disbelief, and that is agreed on by the Muslims. The belief that a man is halal for another man-whether through ownership or otherwise-is falsehood and disbelief, and this is agreed upon by the Muslims, Jews, Christians, and others.

Then there are those who interpret the verse (concerning marriage):

وَلَعَبْدٌ مُّؤْمِنٌ خَيْرٌ مِّن مُّشْرِك 

A believing slave is better than a (free) mushrik (idolater, etc.). [Surah al-Baqarah 2:221]

And they do not differentiate between the one marrying and the one being married,24 as I was asked once by some people-and they were from among those who read the Qur'an and seek knowledge- and they thought that it meant that believing men are permissible (for marriage to other men).

Others claim that this is an issue of differing opinions, and they lie upon the leaders of the Muslims, claiming that it is permitted by a madh-hab that is not common in their country; for example: someone in Syria saying, "This is permitted in the madh-hab of Imam Malik!" Some of them claim that it is permissible in situa- tions of necessity, like a man cannot go 40 days without intercourse! I have been asked about these issues by people in the army, general folk, poor people, and others, and they all had different kinds of corrupt beliefs that prevent them from Allah's path.

Some people hear that the people of knowledge differ regarding whether an action receives a physical punishment or not, and they understand that to mean that that thing is not haram. Their mistake is that they do not distinguish between the differing of opinion in terms of the legislated punishment for an action and its impermis- sibility. For example, some things may be from among the worst of the haram yet there is no corporal punishment attached to it, such as consuming the blood of a dead animal or consuming pork. Neither of these have been associated with any form of corporal punishment.

Sometimes the opinion they cling to is weak, so from the combi- nation of this weak opinion (which is a mistake from some of the scholars of ijtihad), this corrupt understanding (which is a mistake from some of the ignorant), and this lie (which is deception from some of the wrongdoers), the result is a change of the religion, obedience to the Shaytan, and the Lord of creation's anger.

This corrupt belief became so common that it is not unusual to hear a slave given the praise that "he only knew his master," the same way that a slave girl might be praised for only knowing her master or husband! Likewise, a young, clean-faced man is praised for only knowing his boyfriend in the same way that a woman would be praised for only knowing her husband! And in addition to that, many who fornicate with their male slaves or boyfriends are praised for their chastity because they do not fornicate with other than their boyfriends, who are seen as equivalent to a wife; or other than their male slaves, who are seen as equivalent to a slave woman!

There is no doubt that disbelief, corruption, and sins are at different levels, just as iman and righteous deeds are on different levels:

هُمْ دَرَجَاتٌ عِندَ اللَّهِ وَاللَّهُ بَصِيرٌ بِمَا يَعْمَلُونَ

They are (varying) degrees in the sight of Allah, and Allah is All-Seeing of whatever they do. [Surah Ali 'Imran 3:163]

And He, the Most High, said:

إِنَّمَا النَّسِيءُ زِيَادَةٌ فِي الْكُفْرِ

The postponing (of a sacred month) is indeed an increase in disbelief. And He, the Most High, said: [Surah at-Tawbah 9:37]

فَأَمَّا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا فَزَادَتْهُمْ إِيمَانًا وَهُمْ يَسْتَبْشِرُونَ وَأَمَّا الَّذِينَ فِي قُلُوبِهِم مَّرَضٌ فَزَادَتْهُمْ رِجْسًا إِلَىٰرِجْسِهِمْ

As for those who believe, it increased their faith, and they rejoice. But as for those in whose hearts is a disease (of doubt, disbelief, and hypocrisy), it will add suspicion and doubt to their suspicion, disbelief, and doubt, and they will die while they are disbelievers. [Surah at-Tawbah 9:124-125]

And He, the Most High, said:

فَلَمَّا زَاغُوا أَزَاغَ اللَّهُ قُلُوبَهُمْ 

So when they turned away (from the path of Allah), Allah turned their hearts away (from the right path). [Surah as-Saff 61:5]

Just as He, the Most High, said:

يُثبِّتُ اللَّهُ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا بِالْقَوْلِ الثَّابِتِ 

Allah will keep firm those who believe, with the word that stands firm in this world. [Surah Ibrahim 14:27]

And He, the Most High, said: 

وَلَيَزِيدَنَّ كَثِيرًا مِّنْهُم مَّا أُنزِلَ إِلَيْكَ مِن رَّبِّكَ طُغْيَانًا وَكُفْرًا

Verily, that which has been sent down to you (Muhammad) from your Lord increases in many of them their obstinate rebellion and disbelief. [Surah al-Ma'idah 5:68]

Just as He, the Most High, said:

وَالَّذِينَ آتَيْنَاهُمُ الْكِتَابَ يَفْرَحُونَ بِمَا أُنزِلَ إِلَيْكَ

Those to whom We have given the Book rejoice at what has been revealed unto you (i.e., the Qur'an). [Surah ar-Ra'd 13:36]

Therefore, the one who takes a boyfriend or girlfriend (in monog- amy) is actually better than the one who fornicates promiscuously (i.e., with anyone), because the corruption this causes is less, and the one who sins openly is more sinful than one who hides his sin, as is mentioned in the hadith:

من ابتلى مِنْ هَذِهِ الْقَاذُورَاتِ شَيْئًا فَلْيَسْتَتِرُ بِسِتْرِ اللَّهِ فَإِنَّهُ مَنْ يُبْدِي لَنَا صَفْحَتَهُ نُقِمْ عَلَيْهِ كِتَابَ اللَّهِ.

Whoever performs these ugly things should cover them up with the veil of Allah, because whoever reveals to us his wrong action, we will perform what is in the Book of Allah (i.e., the legislated punishment against him). *7

And he also said:

مَنْ سَتَرَ مُسْلِمًا سَتَرَهُ اللَّهُ فِي الدُّنْيَا وَالآخِرَةِ.

Whoever covers (the sin of) a Muslim, Allah will cover him (his sin) in this world and in the Hereafter. *8

And in the hadith:

إِنَّ الخَطِيئَةَ إذا أَخْفَيتَ لَمْ تَضُر إلا صاحبها، ولَكِنْ إِذَا أَعْلَنْتَ فَلَمْ تُنْكَرْ ضرت الجماعة.

If a bad deed is hidden, then it only hurts the perpetrator, but if it is done openly and it is not censured or rebuked, then it hurts the whole community. *9

And in the hadith:

كل أمتي معافى إلا المجاهرين، وإن من المجاهرة أن يعمل الرجل بالليل عملاً، ثم يصبح وقد ستره الله عليه فيقول: يا فلان عملت البارحة كذا وكذا، وقد بات يستره ،ربه، ويصبح يكشف ستر الله عنه .

Every one of my followers will be forgiven except those who expose (openly) their wrongdoings. An example of this is a man who commits a sin at night which Allah has covered for him, and in the morning, he would say (to people), "I committed such and such sin last night," while Allah had kept it a secret. During the night, Allah has covered it up, but in the morning he tears up the cover provided by Allah. *10

Therefore, hiding one's sins is better from these perspectives mentioned, but there is something that can be worse than openly fornicating, and that is to love and aggrandize a person to the extent that one loves and aggrandizes whatever that person loves and aggrandizes, placing allegiance in whomever he or she has allegiance to, and enmity towards whomever he or she has enmity, and then hiding these feelings while displaying something else. This allegiance, enmity, and hypocrisy could be more harmful to the Muslims than the open perpetration of sins. In fact, this is on par with one who openly disbelieves, and this is on par with a munafiq (hypocrite). However, if it does not involve having enmity towards people and abusing people's rights, due to the absence of love (for example), then the first case is worse (i.e., openly sinning).

The wickedness of an action depends on the frequency and the type of action, just as good deeds can be on different levels due to their frequency and type. Every action should be weighed by the Book and the Sunnah.

There is no doubt that both taking boyfriends or girlfriends and what your right hand possesses (in the impermissible situations mentioned above), for example, involve an amount of haram that opposes what is halal, but they also contain some aspects that appear halal, and because it is not a clear impermissibility, it circulates and spreads through society, since the clear haram does not in any way resemble the clear halal. So a man acquires himself a slave for the

purpose of serving him and he groups with that the ability to enjoy his slave (in fact, the latter objective may be more important to him than the former); and that use of the slave could be permissible in the shari'ah, but it could also be a form of oppression and aggres- sion, either by enslaving free people or by purchasing a slave with stolen money, or from the perspective of their use of the slave- they may use them in an arrogant way with a sense of self-grandeur, degrading them and humiliating them without obedience to Allah. 

Likewise, the intimate relationship between two men that resem- bles brotherhood and could be for the sake of hiring someone for work, or to learn a trade, reading, or writing, or to seek knowledge or learn good character, etc.; and all of these are permissible and may even be preferred or obligatory in the religion. The relation- ship could be for the sake of guardianship or education in a trade or form of knowledge, and this relationship would normally be based on some sort of agreement or oath. This is known as a sadiq (friend), a rafiq (companion, partner, etc.), and is known in Turkish as khushdash. It is a type of arrangement between two people, and the basis of the partnership or the medium of exchange (i.e., the payment) could either be halal or haram, meaning that the payment for such services may be rendered sexually or otherwise. Therefore, the doubt in this kind of relationship lies in the desire or intention of the two parties. This is the nature of most occurrences of haram: the truth is used to hide the falsehood.

*1. They were known as Ashab ar-Rayat (People of the Flag) because they would put a flag in front of their home announcing their vocation for any willing customers. 
*2. A man who was an expert at recognizing the likeness of a child to his father.
*3. Istibda' was when a man would send his wife to have intercourse with another man in order to have a son from a noble lineage.
*4. Hadith reported by al-Bukhari (7/15-16).
*5. See Tafsir at-Tabari (9/586) and Tafsir Ibn Kathir (5/457).
*6. This verse addresses men and says that it is better for you to marry a believing slave than a free mushrik. This verse actually addresses fathers or the men responsible for marrying off a woman under their charge. Therefore, what is clearly meant by the verse is that it is better for men to marry their daughters to believing men than idolaters, even if the believer is a slave.
*7. Reported by al-Bukhari (4/111), Muslim (4/2030), and others.
*8. Reported by Imam Malik in Al-Muwatta' (2/825).
*9. Reported by Muslim (4/2074), Abu Dawid (4/393), Ibn Majah (1/82), at-Tirmidhi (2/439), and Ahmad (13/161).
*10. Reported by as-Suyuti in Al-Jami al-Kabir.
*11. Reported by al-Bukhari (8/19-20) and Muslim (4/2291).

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