Saturday, November 11, 2006

Q&A: Going to cinema & watching licentious films?

The following is a draft translation from Arabic.

Question: Is it allowed to go to the cinema and watch ordinary films? Is it allowed to watch sexy licentious films, knowing that it is watching pictures and not real bodies? What is our duty towards the Muslim who watches such films: do we order and forbid him, or leave him to do what he wants?

Answer: It is allowed to go to the cinema to watch serious beneficial films, on condition that the rows of women in the hall should be separated from those of the men. This would be similar to attending a lecture or a seminar, it is allowed to do that, on condition of separating the rows of men from those of women.

But this -which is allowed- with the mentioned conditions, is better to be abandoned, so that the eye would not fall upon the private parts of some women who are present in the hall, and so that the ear would not hear un-correct voices from the audience in the hall. Watching sexy dissolute films is not allowed, even if they were pictures and not real bodies, because the Shariah principle -in this subject- is that الوسيلة إلى الحرام حرام “the means to Haram is Haram”, it is not a condition for the means to lead necessarily to what is Haram, but to be probable is enough.
These films generally lead those who watch them to what is Haram, so the principle applies to such films. That is why it is not allowed to watch or buy them.

As for how should the Shabab behave towards the Muslims who watch such films; most of those who watch such films are low people who do not listen to orders or demands, except for a few who have the mercy of Allah. Yet, if the Shabab could find a strong, preventive and rational method, let them use it. Maybe the person who asked the question means some of his relatives, for whom he feels sad to be in this sick behavior, then he should drive them away from such a behavior -if this is the case- he must order and forbid them, and choose the correct method, hoping that Allah will guide them to the correct path, and he will be rewarded for that, by the will of Allah.

Today, the Muslims are surrounded by miseries from all sides, because of the absence of the Khilafah, a Muslim should not have time for the allowed amusement, so how is it if he spends his time in what is not allowed, Allah forbids? Oh brothers, it is your duty to direct the Muslims strongly but wisely, in order to fill their time by doing good things, by working and persevering to re-establish the Khilafah, and rescue the Ummah from these miseries .

By Sheikh Ata ibn Khaleel Abu al-Rashta

Arabic source

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

Brother, I have a real problem. I go to university in the West, and the rows between men and women are never separated. What do you afvise me to do?

Abu Ismael al-Beirawi said...

It depends which opinion you follow. There are some scholars who say it is prohibited and other scholars who say it is permitted for the purpose of education. There is legitimate difference of opinion on this matter.

You should follow the opinion you believe is the strongest. Remember the hadith of the Prophet (saw) where he said, "A time will come for the people when the patent on his Deen will be like the one who holds red hot coal."

Anonymous said...

So, what about cinemas? IS there difference of opinions if the men and women are segregated?

Abu Ismael al-Beirawi said...

It is possible that there is differences of opinion on the issue but I have not read a different view from any Mujtahid (scholar) yet.

The view that men and women must be segregated in halls such as these is backed by strong evidences.

There are private places upon which the rules of private life apply, such as houses. There are public places upon which the rules of the public life apply, such as the markets. There are public places with special rules like separating men from women, such as the mosques and attending the public talks at lecture theatres and the like which are compared by analogy.

The Prophet (saw) said, “The best row for men is the front row, (furthest from the women’s row) and the best row for women is the back row and the worst is the front row (just behind the men).” [Abu Dawud]

In Abu Dawud Kitab Al Salat, V.1, in the Chapter on Segregation, it is narrated that Umar bin Al Khattab (ra) said: "Make a special door for women in the mosques."

So in the markets, it is not a condition that men separate from women during trading. But in the mosque and the lecture hall, the separation of men from women is a condition. The Messenger Muhammad (saw) used to address men and women in the mosque in medina, men in front and women behind.

The following article discusses the ahkam of mixing between men & women in more detail: http://abuismael.blogspot.com/2006/07/shariah-rules-relating-to-mixing.html

And Allah (swt) knows best

Abu Ismael al-Beirawi said...

Please put your email address in the comment so I can respond to you directly if needed.

Shums said...

From what I understand
'private' means the origin of prohibiting ppl from entering which is different to a public building which defines a criteria of enterance. Eg entering a football stadium is open to the public when one has a valid ticket. So although you need a ticket it's open to all but carries a condition (ie obtaining a ticket).

A wedding hall is not open to the public in origin but only open to those 'who have been specifically invited. Hence it's private unlike the football stadium.

With this understanding unis are in origin open to the public with the condition of having the relevant qualifications.

Please comment on this on whether it is valid or not. Thanks

Anonymous said...

Salaam Brother, Jazakhallah khair for clarifying,

i just wanted to ask a question is to whether a university event can be mixed or not as you are addressing a people, in order to get in to a university you need to have a Uni ID card, but certain people justify the mixing and say it is a public place.

also in the islamic state would the streets be segregated?

Anonymous said...

Salam brothers,

what did the Shaikh mean with "These films generally lead those who watch them to what is Haram" ?

Can you give some examples?

Jazak allahu khair

Islamic Revival said...

Regarding questions about lectures in a University:

Special cases within the Public life

There are private places upon which the rules of private life apply, such as houses. There are public places upon which the rules of the public life apply, such as the markets. There are public places with special rules like separating men from women, such as the mosques and attending the public talks at lecture theatres and the like which are compared by analogy.

The Prophet (saw) said, “The best row for men is the front row, (furthest from the women’s row) and the best row for women is the back row and the worst is the front row (just behind the men).” [Abu Dawud]

In Abu Dawud Kitab Al Salat, V.1, in the Chapter on Segregation, it is narrated that Umar bin Al Khattab (ra) said: "Make a special door for women in the mosques."

So in the markets, it is not a condition that men separate from women during trading. But in the mosque and the lecture hall, the separation of men from women is a condition. The Messenger Muhammad (saw) used to address men and women in the mosque in medina, men in front and women behind. Similarly, in the hospitals the sections of men should be separated from the sections of women.

In all these cases, where men and women are present at the same time, there must not be free mixing, where both sexes are mingling with each other. The general rule is that any contact between members of the opposite sex is minimised as much as possible, so any contact between members of the opposite sex must be necessary to the business at hand. Thus in the Islamic State, for example, in the trains or buses there would be separate areas for men and women.

In any case, the activities which are occurring must be halal (i.e. permitted) in nature. Accordingly, mixing between non-mahram men and women for the purpose of amusement, leisure-activities or entertainment is strictly prohibited. Thus issues such as boyfriend/girlfriend relationships, dating, or enjoying leisure and company with unrelated women is haram. However, Islam does see these types of activities as acceptable, but only when regulated within the framework of marriage.

Islamic Revival said...

Regarding the statement: "These films generally lead those who watch them to what is Haram"

It means that generally these type of movies lead people towards haram actions such as zina (fornication) and that which leads to zina.

Islamic Revival said...

There are many examples we can see in the society around us. People watch such movies and get agitated such that they wish to satisfy their desires in a prohibited manner such as dating, fornication, visiting prostitutes and the like.

Anonymous said...

Asalamu aleykum
I would like to know, is it permisible to see fx horror movies where there is shirk elements? Like having contact with the unseen?