Benefits of Lowering the Gaze

The benefits of lowering the gaze are huge. Failing to lower the gaze destroys the heart. In the context of pornography addiction the first battle that a person must win to overcome this problem is to control the gaze. May Allaah have mercy upon us all.

Ibn al-Qayyim (may Allaah have mercy on him) said in al-Jawaab al-Kaafi (125):

There are a number of benefits in lowering the gaze:

1 – It is obedience to the command of Allaah, which brings happiness to man in this world and in the next. There is nothing more beneficial to a person in this world and in the next than obeying the commands of his Lord, may He be blessed and exalted, and those who are happy in this world and the next can only attain that happiness by obeying His commands, and those who are doomed in this world and in the next are only doomed because they ignore His commands.

2 – It prevents the poisoned arrows (of the shaytaan), which may lead to a person’s doom, from reaching his heart.

3 – It creates a heart that is devoted to and focused on Allaah. Letting the gaze wander distracts the heart and keeps it far from Allaah. There is nothing more harmful to a person than letting his gaze wander, as it creates alienation between a person and his Lord.

4 – It strengthens the heart and brings it peace, just as letting the gaze wander weakens it and makes it sad.

5 – It brings light and guidance to the heart, just as letting the gaze wander brings darkness and misguidance to it. Hence Allaah mentioned the verse of light immediately after the command to lower the gaze, as He says (interpretation of the meaning):

“Tell the believing men to lower their gaze (from looking at forbidden things), and protect their private parts…”

[al-Noor 24:30]

Then straight after that He says (interpretation of the meaning):

“Allaah is the Light of the heavens and the earth. The parable of His Light is as (if there were) a niche and within it a lamp”

[al-Noor 24:35]

i.e., the likeness of His light in the heart of His believing slave who obeys His commands and heeds His prohibitions. If the heart is enlightened blessings will come to it from all sides, but if it is darkened, calamity and evil will come to it from all places. Whatever exists of innovation, misguidance, following whims and desires, avoiding true guidance and turning away from the means of happiness and focusing on the means that lead to doom, that will be recognizable by means of the light that is in the heart. If that light is lost then one will be left like a blind man stumbling in the darkness.

6 – It generates true insight which can distinguish between truth and falsehood, sincerity and lies. Allaah rewards His slave for his good deeds with something similar and if he gives up something for the sake of Allaah, He will compensate him with something better than it. So if he lowers his gaze and refrains from looking at things that Allaah has forbidden, Allaah will compensate him with enlightenment; he will compensate him for restraining his gaze for the sake of Allaah, and will open to him the doors of knowledge, faith and true insight which he only attained by means of the light in his heart. The opposite of that is the blindness which Allaah, which is the opposite of insight. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):

“Verily, by your life (O Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), in their wild intoxication, they were wandering blindly”

[al-Hijr 15:72]

7 – It creates a heart that is steadfast, brave and strong. Allaah will give him both insight and power and strength, as it says in the report: “The one who goes against his whims and desires, the shaytaan flees from his shadow.”

On the other hand, the one who follows his whims and desires will feel a sense of humiliation, indignity, worthlessness and insignificance, which is the punishment which Allaah has decreed for those who disobey Him as al-Hasan said: “Even if they ride the finest of mounts, the effect of sin will never depart from them. Allaah insists that the one who disobeys Him will be humiliated.”

Allaah, may He be glorified and exalted, has connected strength to obedience to Him, and humiliation to disobedience to Him. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):

“But honour, power and glory belong to Allaah, and to His Messenger (Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), and to the believers”

[al-Munaafiqoon 63:8]

“So do not become weak (against your enemy), nor be sad, and you will be superior (in victory) if you are indeed (true) believers”

[Aal ‘Imraan 3:139].

Faith is both words and deeds, inward and outward. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):

“Whosoever desires honour, power and glory then to Allaah belong all honour, power and glory [and one can get honour, power and glory only by obeying and worshipping Allaah (Alone)]. To Him ascend (all) the goodly words, and the righteous deeds exalt it (i.e. the goodly words are not accepted by Allaah unless and until they are followed by good deeds)”

[Faatir 35:10]

i.e., whoever desires power, let him seek it by means of obedience to Allaah and remembrance of Him, by speaking good words and doing good deeds. In Du’aa’ al-Qunoot it says: “he is not humiliated whom You have befriended, nor is he honoured who You take as an enemy”. Whoever obeys Allaah is His friend in as much as he obeys Him, and he will have support and honour from Him commensurate with his obedience towards Him. Whoever disobeys Him is His enemy in as much as he disobeys Him, and he will have humiliation from Him commensurate with his disobedience towards Him.

8 – It blocks the shaytaan from a means of entering his heart, for he may enter with looking, and penetrate the heart faster than the wind blowing through an empty space, and he may present to him the image that he looked at and make it attractive, like an idol to which his heart becomes devoted, then he encourages him and gives him hopes, and fans the flames of desire in his heart, adding the fuel of sin which could not have reached his heart without looking at that image. So his heart becomes inflamed and surrounded with fire on all sides, resulting in infatuation and frustration, and he is in the midst of it like a lamb in the oven. Hence the punishment for those whose desires were fuelled by haraam looking is that in al-Barzakh they are placed in an oven of fire.

9 – It distracts one from thinking of what is in one’s best interests, so his affairs become neglected and he follows his whims and desires and neglects to remember his Lord. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):

“and let not your eyes overlook them, desiring the pomp and glitter of the life of the world; and obey not him whose heart We have made heedless of Our remembrance, and who follows his own lusts, and whose affair (deeds) has been lost”

[al-Kahf 18:28]

10 – Between the eyes and the heart there is a connection which means that the one is affected by the other, and if one of them becomes good, the other will also become good, and if one becomes corrupt the other will become corrupt. If the heart becomes corrupt the gaze will become corrupt, and if the gaze become corrupt the heart will become corrupt, and similarly if one is sound the other will also be sound.

Barakallahu feekum.

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8 Steps to Overcoming Pornography Addiction

Pornography addiction is a major problem among muslims of all ages and backgrounds. This problem is destroying spirituality, relationships and even performance in work/ education. Below is a summary of the steps required to overcome this problem:

1.Admit that you need help

Many of those afflicted with this problem start to accept pornography as a normal part of life. However, the first step to resolving the problem is to acknowledge that a problem exists.

2.Accept that only Allah has the power to heal you

Allah states in the Quran “If Allah helps you none can overcome you, if Allah forsakes you who can help you thereafter. In Allah let the believers put their trust” (3:160).

Acknowledging that Allah is your Lord and you are His servant is a key psychological step in dealing with a psychological addiction. Every muslim states this but when we need to attain some strength we must contemplate and meditate upon this point.

3.Carry out a comprehensive self analysis

Hold yourself to account. Where are you in life? How is your emaan? How did you end up in this state? What good points do you have and where can you improve? What is holding you back from improving?

Be honest with yourself and set yourself some goals. Make sure these goals are realistic and achievable. Start working on these goals today!

4.Make sincere tauba/repentance to Allah

Allah loves it when we ask for his forgiveness. Be sincere in asking Allah for His mercy. List your mistakes in your mind and ask Allah’s forgiveness for each of these. Know and acknowledge that part of this process is to make a strong sincere intention to refrain from these sins in the future.

One way of asking forgiveness is to make fresh wudu and pray 2 rakah nafl and ask sincerely for Allah’s forgiveness.

5.Follow up tauba by action

Decide to act in order to avoid falling into pornography again. DO WHAT IT TAKES! If this means never surfing the internet alone or not watching television or throwing away your smart phone and getting a basic phone, then you must do what it takes. If this means staying from certain friends and then you must stay away.

Know this that when you give up something for the sake of Allah, Allah will give you something better in its place.

6.Go to sleep straight after Isha prayer

At night make wudu, read Isha prayer and then go straight to sleep. Do not stay up watching television, surfing the net or chatting to people.

7.Be consistent

You must be consistent in the changes you have made. Do not fall behind. Set yourself small targets and make sure you achieve these everyday.

8.Give charity/sadaqah

Giving charity is a good way to gain Allah’s forgiveness and mercy. Give whatever charity you can when you can. It doesn’t have to be a huge amount. Every penny and every small gesture can be a charity.

When you give charity try to give it secretly and do not tell others about this. You want all your reward to come from Allah not as acknowledgment from other people.

If you require mentoring on your journey to recover from this addiction please complete the contact form below. Appointments are held on Skype and the fee is £30 for a half hour appointment. May Allah bless you and heal you from this problem.

Your Heart Is a Fortress

Ibn ul Qayyim rahimahullah is reported to have said “Your heart is a fortress surrounded by the army of shaitaan and the doors to the fortress are your senses.”

The traps of shaitaan are many but the doors by which we become vulnerable to them are few. The main door by which the army of shaitaan enters the hearts of men is through the eyes. Failing to lower your gaze allows the whispering of shaitaan to enter your heart. It raises the sceptre of false desires and calls a person to haraam.

Furthermore one of the big sources of evil in the world is coveting that which others have. Our eyes view what others have and our hearts seek to gain these things. This is true whether its cars, houses or any other worldly item.

Controlling our gaze and being aware of how our minds process what we experience is crucial to gaining control. There are two main factors to controlling ourselves.

  1. Controlling what stimulus we allow into our mind
  2. Deciding consciously how we process this stimulus

Controlling the stimulus is impacted by factors such as what company we keep, what we watch on television and the internet, the conversations that we choose to partake in.

The Messenger of Allah salallahu alaihi wasalam said that “you are upon the religion of your companions.” In the modern era in business psychology we are told that you are the average of the five people you spend the most time with. The fact of the matter is that whether it relates to your deen or your dunya the companionship that you keep is crucial to your success. If you want to change your own psychology then change your company.

In the modern era we are exposed to evil and harm at unprecedented levels. Never in the history of mankind have human beings been exposed to so many sources of harm and evil. Whether it is social media posts, television programmes, roadside adverts or the news we are constantly bombarded with haram. We seem to sleep walk into these evils and then complain about issues relating everything from lack of emaan to pornography addiction. Control the stimulus that goes into your senses and you can achieve your goals in both deen and dunya more easily.

It is inevitable in the world that we live in that some negative stimulus will break through our defences. The issue here is how conscious we are and how we then process it. One of the tragedies of our times is that seeing that which is harmful to us has become normal and we have unfortunately become desensitised.

The Messenger of Allah salallahu alaihi wasalam said that “If you see an evil then stop it with your hand, if you cannot then stop it with your tongue, and if you cannot then hate it in your heart..”

We must consciously hate the evil that gets through to us despite our defences. We must not share it on social media so that other people can become exposed to it. If we are in company where a conversation is going in a direction that is not conducive to our goals in this life and the next then we must either stop it verbally or step away from it.

In conclusion, we must monitor the state of our heart and the defences of our fortress. When there is a gap in our defence we must plug it for our eternal life depends upon it. Build your fortress high and strong upon a strong foundation of taqwa and emaan for surely “He (shaitaan) has no authority over those who believe and rely on their Lord”(16:99).

Aims of this blog

Our aims with this blog are simple. We wish to impart knowledge and information that is of benefit to those who read it and share it. Our overriding purpose is to attain the mercy and blessings of Allah. For this reason the information on this website is provided free of charge and without copyright. You are free to inform and spread what you find here to your hearts desire.

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Barakallahu feekum. May Allah bless you all.