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Monday, February 9, 2015

Valentine’s Day From Islamic Perspective


VALENTINE'S DAY - History and Islamic Perspective

VALENTINE'S DAY - History and Islamic Perspective

So majestic are its diverse aspects, they are too subtle to be described; their reality can only be apprehended by personal experience. We might've not experienced it but most of us agree that it's a nice positive feeling. But…wait! What about Love and Religion?
The concept of Love in Islam, Any Idea?? Is Love forbidden in Islam? Or Is It Allowed?

If it isn't forbidden, what then Does Allah Say About Love?

Allah says in the Qur'an: "And among His signs is that He created for you mates from among yourselves, that ye may dwell in tranquility with them and He has put love and mercy between your (hearts). Verily in that are signs for those who reflect." [Ar Room 30:21] The key words in the verse are - Mawaddatan wa Rahmah - which translates as Love and Mercy. The interesting thing to note about this verse is to notice the location of this verse along with the verses that precede it and those that come after. Allah mentions His Signs (Night/Day, Heaven/Earth, and Man/Woman) and He puts the feeling of Love and Mercy between spouses in the same value as the creation of Heaven & Earth. Now then how can we ignore such a great Sign of Allah? Apart from this… "Verily, I was filled with love for her."


Ever wondered who uttered this beautiful sentence? IT WAS NONE BUT OUR BELOVED PROPHET (saw) This is how expressive our Prophet was, when he talked of love for his wife. However, today we find that many of us are shy to express our love. In fact, many consider it a sign of weakness to say "I love so and so" and they consider it a blow to their pride to tell their spouse, "I love you". But the Messenger (saw) was not shy to express his love of his wife. And notice that he didn't simply say, "I love her", but he said, "I was filled with love for her".

This means that it was real TRUE love that he had for Khadija (ra) and that he was not shy to express it. There is no such thing as love being forbidden in Islam, which encourages Muslims to love each other for the sake of Allah and express your love to your brother, but of course there are limitation to this, let us see Concept of Love in Islam Love is that beautiful feeling Allah (SWT) puts in the heart of a sincere, pious and god fearing couple at the time of their nikah. And this is a serious, long-term relationship in which both individuals are content and comfortable with one another. NOT A short term, action-packed romance thriller from the studios of Hollywood. So, what is the ruling regarding love in Islam? It definelty isn't forbidden, it doesn't even mean that you are free to do whatever you will. IT ISNT IN OUR CONTROL either.

To abstain from it however, we are ordered by Our Creator, to LOWER OUR GAZE. Because,

Love usually starts from the eye. {"Tell the believers to lower their eyes and protect their private parts…"} [An-Nur; 30] "The glance is a poisoned arrow of shaytaan. Whoever lowers his gaze for Allah, He will bestow upon him a refreshing sweetness, which he will find in his heart on the day he meets Him."(Hadith) , And the prophet offers one of the best Solutions, The Messenger salalahu alaihiwassalam said: "For those who love each other, nothing has proven as good as marriage." (Sunan Ibn Majah)

Though it might come as a blow, but in case marriage isn't possible for some reason, it's best to forget it and leave the matter to Allah. For Allah knows what's best for us.


Imam Shafiee has written a poem on this matter: "And from misery is that you love, and (the one) who you love, loves other than you, or that you want good for a person, and he wants to hurt you". When love for somebody is sincere we seek that person's success and we wish that person prosperity in the hereafter. We do not indulge in ILLICIT relationships, INDECENT activities and waste time and energy and stoop down in the eyes of Our Creator. For, Believing men and women are friends of one another. They command what is right and forbid what is wrong, perform prayer and give alms, and obey Allah and His messenger. They are the people on whom Allah will have mercy. Allah is Almighty, All-Wise. (Surah Tawba, 71) WE GIVE NO IMPORTANCE TO CELEBRATING LOVE ON A SO AND SO DAY. WE GIVE NO IMPORTANCE TO CELEBRATING A FESTIVAL THAT HAS NO PART IN OUR RELIGION. ARE WE NOT AWARE? The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: "Whoever imitates a people is one of them." This involves imitating and resembling them in venerating that which they venerate and respecting their festivals and holidays, and imitating them in some of their religious practices. Expression of feelings and emotions is not a justification for the Muslim to allocate a day for celebration based on his own thoughts and ideas, and to call it a festival, or make it like a festival and celebrate


The Festival of Love was one of the festivals of the pagan Romans, when paganism was the prevalent religion of the Romans more than seventeen centuries ago. In the pagan Roman concept, it was an expression of "spiritual love". Among the most famous of these myths was the Roman belief that Romulus, the founder of Rome, was suckled one day by a she-wolf, which gave him strength and wisdom. The Romans used to celebrate this event in mid-February each year with a big festival. One of the rituals of this festival was the sacrifice of a dog and a goat. Two strong and muscular youths would daub the blood of the dog and goat onto their bodies, and then they would wash the blood away with milk. After that there would be a great parade, with these two youths at its head, which would go about the streets. The two youths would have pieces of leather with which they would hit everyone who crossed their path. The Roman women would welcome these blows, because they believed that they could prevent or cure infertility. And soon the Christians took this up and started celebrating Feb 14 as V day. The Christian clergy too reacted against this tradition, which they considered to have a corrupting influence on the morals of young men and women. It was abolished in Italy, where it had been well-known, then it was revived in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, when in some western countries there appeared shops which sold small books called "Valentine's books" And we? We started celebrating this so called festival of love. We, who have been blessed with such a wonderful religion, taught to love each other for the sake of Allah each and every single day of the Year. Anybody blessed with faith will understand that, Firstly: That its origins lie in the pagan beliefs of the Romans, where it was an expression of the spiritual love of the idols which they used to worship instead of Allah. Whoever celebrates it is celebrating an occasion of shirk on which the idols are venerated.


DO WE WANT TO BE AMONG THE MUSHRIKEEN OR THE FOLLOWERS OF THE BEST RELIGION WHICH THE CREATOR HAS PERFECTED AND CHOSEN FOR US? WE HAVE AN IDENTITY OF OUR OWN! WE HAVE OUR BELOVED PROPHETS EXAMPLE TO FOLLOW, THE MOST LOVING ANDCARING HUSBAND, WHO LOVED HIS WIVES EACH AND EVERY DAY OF HIS LIFE AND EXPRESSED IT. GIVE A SECOND THOUGHT-> to each among you, we have prescribed a law and a clear way [al-Maa'idah 5:48] 'For every nation we have ordained religious ceremonies which they must follow' [al-Hajj 22:67] like the qiblah (direction faced in prayer), prayer and fasting. So there is no difference between joining them in their festival and joining them in their other rituals. Agreeing with the whole festival is agreeing with kufr. Agreeing with some of their minor issues is the same as agreeing with them in some of the branches of kufr. Imitating the kuffar in general –whether they are idol-worshippers or People of the Book – is haraam, whether that imitation is of their worship – which is the most serious form – or of their customs and behavior. This is indicated by the Qur'an, Sunnah and ijmaa' (scholarly consensus) Allah has made Islam cover all (human) interests at all times and in all places and for all people. So there is no need to adopt the ways of the kuffar or imitate them. Imitation causes defects in the Muslim personality, such as feelings of inadequacy, inferiority, weakness and defeatism, and then it leads to shunning and keeping away from the path and laws of Allah. Experience has shown that admiration for the kuffar and imitation of them cause's people to love them, have complete faith in them and take them as friends and helpers, and to reject Islam and its people, its heroes, its legacy and values, and become ignorant of all of that. The love referred to in this festival ever since the Christians revived it is romantic love outside the framework of marriage.

THIS HAS NO PLACE IN ISLAM, AS IT OPENS THE DOORS TO OTHER MAJOR SINS. .
This is the solution!!


The path to Paradise is to love Allah completely and to become a person whom Allah loves very much. Such people fear (and respect) Allah (Surah Tawba, 4; Surah Al 'Imran, 76), purify themselves (Surah at-Tawba, 108; Surah al-Baqara, 222), are even-handed (Surah al-Hujurat, 9) and steadfast (Surah Al 'Imran, 146), are good-doers (Surah al-Baqara, 195), turn from wrong-doing (Surah al-Baqara, 222), and put their trust in Him (Surah Al 'Imran, 159). Love in Islam The supplication for love mentioned by our Prophet (saw) is a significant example of understanding the love felt for Allah and the believers: The Prophet said: "One of the supplications of Hazrat Dawud (as) was: 'Allah, I beg of You Your love, the love of those who love You, and such conduct as should lead me to Your love. Allah, make your love dearer to me than my soul and my family, and dearer than cold water.'" (At-Tirmidhi) Beloved sister, the need of the hour is to live for Islam, live for this beautiful deen the Creator of 3alameen has perfected for us. We need to abstain from evil and make sure our sisters and brothers also stay away from all kinds of evils.


VALENTINE'S DAY - History and Islamic Perspective

What is it and where did it come from?
Consider Valentine's Day, a day that after dying out a well deserved death in most of Europe (but surviving in Britain and United States) has suddenly started to emerge across a good swath of Muslim countries. Who was Valentine? Why is this day observed? Legends abound, as they do in all such cases, but this much is clear: Valentine's Day began as a pagan ritual started by Romans in the 4th century BCE to honor the god Lupercus. The main attraction of this ritual was a lottery held to distribute young women to young men for "entertainment and pleasure"--until the next year's lottery. Among other equally despicable practices associated with this day was the lashing of young women by two young men, clad only in a bit of goatskin and wielding goatskin thongs, who had been smeared with blood of sacrificial goats and dogs. A lash of the "sacred" thongs by these "holy men" was believed to make them better able to bear children.


As usual, Christianity tried, without success, to stop the evil celebration of Lupercalia. It first replaced the lottery of the names of women with a lottery of the names of the saints. The idea was that during the following year the young men would emulate the life of the saint whose name they had drawn. (The idea that you can preserve the appearance of a popular evil and yet somehow turn it to serve the purpose of virtue, has survived. Look at all those people who are still trying, helplessly, to use the formats of popular television entertainments to promote good. They might learn something from this bit of history. It failed miserably) Christianity ended up doing in Rome, and elsewhere, as the Romans did. The only success it had was in changing the name from Lupercalia to St. Valentine's Day. It was done in CE 496 by Pope Gelasius, in honor of some Saint Valentine. There are as many as 50 different Valentines in Christian legends. Two of them are more famous, although their lives and characters are also shrouded in mystery. According to one legend, and the one more in line with the true nature of this celebration, St. Valentine was a "lovers'" saint, who had himself fallen in love with his jailer's daughter.

Due to serious troubles that accompanied such lottery, French government banned the practice in 1776. In Italy, Austria, Hungry, and Germany also the ritual vanished over the years. Earlier, it had been banned in England during the 17th century when the Puritans were strong.

However in 1660 Charles II revived it. From there it also reached the New World, where enterprising Yankees spotted a good means of making money. Esther A. Howland, who produced one of the first commercial American Valentine's Day cards called--- what else--- valentines, in the 1840s, sold $5,000 worth--when $5,000 was a lot of money--the first year. The valentine industry has been booming ever since.

The history of Valentine's Day serves as a powerful lesson for Muslims. St. Valentine became a Saint trying to resist free sex. Even though there was an attempt to Christianize it, today St. Valentine's day is gone back to its roots. No one even knows that the Church even tried to ban the St. Valentine's Day. Rather, most people think of romance, cupid and his arrow, which are vestiges of pagan Rome.

Pagan origins of Valentine's Day
The first information about this day is found in pre-Christian Rome, when pagans would celebrate the "Feast of the Wolf" on February 15, also known as the Feast of Lupercalius in honour of Februata Juno, the Roman goddess of women and marriage, and Pan, Roman god of nature.

On this day, young women would place their names in an urn, from which boys would randomly draw to discover their sexual companion for the day, the year, and sometimes the rest of their lives. These partners exchanged gifts as a sign of affection, and often married.

Christian Influence
When Christianity came onto the scene in Rome, it wanted to replace this feast with something more in line with its ethics and morality. A number of Christians decided to use February 14 for this purpose. This was when the Italian Bishop Valentine was executed by the Roman Emperor Claudius II for conducting secret marriages of military men in the year 270.

Claudius II decided that single men made better soldiers than those with wives and families, so he outlawed marriage for young, single men, who made up his military. Valentine defied Claudius and performed marriages for young couples in secret. When his actions were revealed, Claudius put him to death. Another version of the story says that Valentine was a holy priest in Rome, who helped Christians escape harsh Roman prisons where they were often beaten and tortured.

Valentine was arrested and sent to the prefect of Rome for this. He found that his attempts to make Valentine renounce his faith were useless, and so recommended he be beaten with clubs, and later beheaded. This took place on February 14, 270.

According to the Catholic encyclopaedia, there are at least three different Saint Valentines, all of whom are Christian martyrs of February 14. One of them is described as a priest from Rome (as mentioned above), another as bishop of Interamna (modern Terni), and the third from Africa.

It was in the year 496 that Pope Gelasius officially changed the February 15 Lupercalia festival to the February 14 St. Valentine's Day to give Christian meaning to a pagan festival. The holiday become popular in the United States in the 1800's during the Civil War.

As well, Pope Gelasius ordered a slight change in the lottery for young women that would take place during the pagan festival. Instead of the names of young women, the box would have the names of saints. Men and women were allowed to draw from the box, and the purpose of this was to copy the ways of the saint they had selected for the rest of the year.

Valentine's Day Customs
A number of the customs connected to Valentine's Day originate in the belief in England and France during the middle Ages, that on February 14, birds began to pair.

Fourteenth and 15th centuries' French and English literatures make indirect references to the practice. Those who chose each other as husband and wife on Valentine's Day apparently called each other their Valentines.

In terms of the Valentine's greeting "Your Valentine" which today you find on a number of Valentine's Day cards, the above-mentioned Roman priest Valentine actually sent the first 'valentine' greeting himself.

While he was in prison awaiting execution, he apparently fell in love with a young girl who would visit him. Before he died, he allegedly wrote her a letter, signed 'From your Valentine,' In terms of the virtually naked, arrow-shooting cupid character, which shoots people with its arrows to make them fall in love, this character is a vestige of Roman pagan times. Cupid was described as the son of Venus, the Roman god of love and beauty. You usually find Cupid's picture on Valentine cards and other paraphernalia .

Islamic Perspective
We should avoid anything associated with pagan immoral practices - We do not need to honour or celebrate the death of a Christian "saint" - Islam does not encourage flirting or suggestions of romantic relationships before marriage - Love between families, friends and married people does not need to be celebrated on a day with such un-Islamic origins.

Question: In recent times, celebration of the Valentine Day has spread, particularly among female students. It is a Christian celebration, and it is (manifested) with fully red costumes, clothing and shoes, and exchange of red roses. What is the ruling on celebrating this holiday ?
Answer: Celebrating the Valentine Day is not permissible because:
Firstly, it is an innovated holiday that has no basis in the Sharee`ah.
Secondly, it calls to love and passion.
Thirdly, it calls to keeping one's heart busy with nonsense matters which contradict the guidance of the righteous predecessors, may Allah be pleased with them.

So it is not permissible that anything from the signs of that holiday takes place on that day, whether it relates to eating, drinking, clothing, giving gifts, or other than that. It is incumbent upon the Muslim to be proud of his/her religion and that he/she does not blindly follow every crier. May Allah the Exalted protect Muslims from every trial, apparent and hidden, and that He give them protection and guidance. Ameen.


Question
Some people celebrate Yawm al-Hubb (Valentine's Day)on February 14 [the second month of the Christian Gregorian calendar] every year by exchanging red roses as gifts. They also dress up in red clothing, and congratulate one another (on this occasion). Some sweet shops produce special sweets - red in colour - and draw hearts upon them. Some shops advertise their goods which are specially related to this day. What is the Islaamic view [concerning the following]: Celebrating this day? Buying from these shops on this day? Selling - by shop-owners who are not celebrating - the things which are used as gifts, to those who are celebrating?

Response
The clear evidence from the Qur.aan and Sunnah - and this is agreed upon by consensus (Ijmaa') of the early generations of the Muslim Ummah - indicates that there are only two 'Eeds in Islaam (days of celebration): 'Eed al-Fitr (after the fast of Ramadhaan) and 'Eed al-Adhaa (after the standing at 'Arafah for pilgrimage).

Every other 'Eed - whether it is to do with a person, group, incident or any other occasion - is an innovated 'Eed. It is not permissible for the Muslim people to participate in it, approve of it, make any show of happiness on its occasion, or assist in it in any way - since this will be transgressing the bounds of Allaah: " ...and whoever transgresses the bounds of Allaah, he has wronged his own self," [Soorah at-Talaaq, Aayah 1]

If we add to this fabricated 'Eed the fact that it is one of the 'Eeds of the disbelievers, it is sin upon sin. This is because it is Tashabbuh (imitation) of the disbelievers, and a type of Muwaalaat (loyalty) to them. And Allaah has prohibited the believers from imitation of them and having love or loyalty for them in His Mighty Book (Qur.aan). It is also confirmed from the Prophet (sal-Allaahu `alayhe wa sallam) that he said: " Whoever imitates a people is one of them."

'Eed al-Hubb (the celebration of Valentine's Day) comes under the category of what has been mentioned here, since it is one of the pagan Christian holidays. Hence it is not permissible for any Muslim, who believes in Allaah and the Last Day, to participate in it, approve of it, or congratulate (anyone on that occasion). On the contrary, it is obligatory to abandon it and stay far away from it - in response to Allaah and His Messenger, and to distance oneself from the anger of Allaah and His punishment.

Additionally, it is forbidden for a Muslim to assist or help in this Valentine's Day, or any other of the forbidden/illegal celebrations in any way whatsoever - whether by food or drink, selling or buying, production, gift-giving, correspondence, announcements, etc. All of these things are considered as co-operating in sin and transgression and disobedience of Allaah and His Messenger. Allaah, the Glorious and Most High, says:
"... and co-operate with one another in righteousness and piety, and do not co-operate in sin and transgression. And fear Allaah! Verily Allaah is severe in punishment," [Soorah al-Maa.idah, Aayah 2]

Likewise, it is obligatory for every Muslim to adhere strictly to the Qur'aan and Sunnah in every situation - especially in times of temptations and corruption. It is incumbent that he/she understand, be aware and be cautioned from falling into the deviations of those whom Allaah is angry with and those who are astray and the immoral people who have no fear of punishment - nor hope of reward - from Allaah, and who give no attention at all to Islaam.

It is necessary for the Muslim to flee to Allaah, the Most High, seeking His Hidaayah (Guidance) and Thabaat (Firmness) upon the Path. Verily, there is no Guide except Allaah, and no One Who can Grant Firmness except Him.


Vanity of Valentine's Day
February 14th, also known as Valentine's Day, is that time of the year that has commonly been associated with love and romance. Valentine's Day has become synonymous with greeting cards, red roses, teddy bears and a whole host of other paraphernalia that are exchanged between young men and women. Many schools, universities and clubs prepare elaborate functions and parties. Many will argue that Valentine's Day is a day of joy and harmless fun. But is it really?
From an Islamic point of view Valentine's day is wrong for the following reasons :
1. It invites people to the relentless pursuit of sexual freedom
In Islam all forms of intimacy and passion are confined to the relationship of marriage. Anything beyond this is not acceptable. The culture of promoting the satisfaction of desires and passions in an uncontrolled manner is unhealthy.
Islam recognizes that we are human and can succumb to human weakness, so it has provided strict safeguards for our own sake. The Quran mentions clearly : "Do not come near to adultery. It is a great sin and an evil way." (Surah Israa, Verse 32)
2. Valentine's Day is based on pagan culture
Cupid, the virtually naked, arrow-shooting character, which shoots people with its arrows to make them fall in love, is a remnant of Roman pagan times. Cupid is described as the son of Venus, the Roman god of love and beauty. Cupid's picture is frequently found on Valentine cards and other paraphernalia.
3. Imitation is strictly forbidden in Islam
Islam only has two special days of celebration – the two Eids. Tashabbuh (imitation) of any foreign culture or system that is opposed to Islam is prohibited. Islam is very sensitive about maintaining its purity and the unique identity of its followers. For example, Salaah is forbidden at the precise times of sunrise, transition, and sunset to eliminate the possibility of confusion with the practice of sun worship. When such care has been taken regarding worship what can we say regarding the celebration of a sinful occasion such as Valentine's Day?
4. Extravagance and wastage is discouraged by the Quran and Sunnah
Vast amounts of money are usually squandered on purchasing useless gifts, cards and other futile items.
The Quran mentions : "The wasters are the brothers of Shaitaan."
5. Valentine's Day brings along with it a host of parties, balls, dances, social functions, etc.
Unfortunately, these are havens of free mixing, alcohol, drugs, and illicit sexual encounters.
Conclusion
As Muslims we need to distance ourselves from such frivolous events. We should not participate in anything associated with Valentines Day nor should we encourage it in any way. As fathers and mothers we should pay attention to our children. We should ensure that we guard them from such activities by educating and monitoring them.
Remember that by participating in Valentine's Day we are destroying our Islamic morals and standards of respect and dignity. Let us become the army of Allah not the army of Shaitaan.


LET US STAND UP TOGETHER AND SAY NO TO WESTERN HAEGMONY.


SAY NO TO VALENTINE'S DAY. LETS US RISE UP, FOR THE REVIVAL OF ISLAM

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