Prom

>> Tuesday, February 1, 2011


I know my question is really early to be asking but I can't stop thinking about it…in a couple of months, it's going to be prom. I know it’s haraam to date, but can't I just go there and hang out with my friends? I'm a muhjaba , so don't worry- I'm going to be dressed modestly. I just can't imagine graduating after 12 years and not celebrating with my friends, especially since we're all going our separate ways. By the way, my mom said it's my decision since I promised her I'm not going to dance or do anything wrong. I just want to feel like a senior…

Signed,
Can't stop thinking about prom




Dear "Can't Stop Thinking of Prom",



First off, congrats, girl! You're a senior! You should be proud of yourself (: May Allah help you choose a major that rewards you both here and the Hereafter.



Now onto your question…to go or not to go to prom? I'm so happy you asked this because this is a question a lot of young Muslims have to tackle with.

Here's the thing…having an education is a very big blessing. I know going to school can feel like a drag half the time and right now as a senior, leaving school is all you can probably think about (besides prom :P) but the truth is… you're very lucky to have gotten the chance to go to school. Millions of children around the world have to work…and others are stuck in wars or have terrible diseases that prevent them from going to school. So who is it that gave you this blessing? That's right…as with every blessing, it was Allah. Who is the One who was with you the whole time you were in school? Wasn't it Allah who saw you through every difficult test, who helped you come up with great ideas for your papers, who made your unbelievably hard "math" teacher have a change of heart? (Insert any subject here) Now- after supporting you for 12 years, do you really want to disappoint Him?


You might be thinking- but that's my point…"I'm not going to disappoint Him because I'm not going to do anything wrong." And here's what I have to say…by going to prom- by paying however much the ticket costs, by buying a dress, and sitting in that hall, you are giving off a very clear message. You are actually supporting the ‘idea of prom’ which in itself is against Allah’s teachings and Commandments. AND what’s more, even if you aren't going to do anything wrong, by choosing to go to such an environment, you are supporting everything that will happen there- from the drinking, flirting, slow dancing, etc. Things that definitely do not please Allah!

See, in the Quran, Allah tells us very clearly not to follow the Shaitaan's footsteps.

He says: “O you who believe! Do not follow the footsteps of the Shaytaan, and whoever follows the footsteps of the Shaytaan, then surely he bids the doing of indecency and evil” [24.21]


He also tells us not to only not to ‘do’ sin BUT also not to go near places of sin.

“Say, "Come, I will recite what your Lord has prohibited to you. [He commands] that you not associate anything with Him, and to parents, good treatment, and do not kill your children out of poverty; We will provide for you and them. And do not approach immoralities - what is apparent of them and what is concealed…(Al Anam 6:151)”


Why? Well for one thing, even if you aren't planning on doing something…being in such an environment can taint your heart and make you insensitive to sin. I mean after sitting for a couple of hours in a place where couples are literally feeling each other, it's going to be a lot harder to think that shaking hands with the opposite sex is wrong. You see what I mean? Just think- every minute you spend there, every single thing you see that is haraam and don't do anything about it- all of that you are going to be asked about on the Day of Judgment.

Remember the Prophet sallah Allahoo alyhee wa salam said:

“Whosoever of you sees an evil action, let him change it with his hand; and if he is not able to do so, then with his tongue; and if he is not able to do so, then with his heart; and that is the weakest of faith.

Not to mention the fact that if other Muslim girls get inspired by you and decide to go, you are going to have a share of their sins…

The Prophet sallah Allahoo alyhee wa salam said: "Whoever starts in Islam a good practice (sunnah), he gets the reward of it and the reward of all those that act on it. And whosoever starts in Islaam an evil practice (sunnah), he gets the evil of it and the evil of all those that act on it." [Muslim]


Still not convinced? Ask yourself this: Would the Companions (May Allah be pleased with them) have gone to such a place? I know you said your mother said you could go…but would you have invited our Mother Aishia (May Allah be pleased with her) to go if she was alive?

Let me bring it closer to home. I don't know whether or not you have a brother, but how would you feel if your brother said, "Look, sis. My friends are going to a bar, and I'm going with them. Don't worry- everything's cool. I'm not going to drink or anything. Just hang out with my gang." If you're like me, you'd be like "Uh-uh. I don't think so!" And it's not because you want to be mean…but because you love your brother and you want to protect him.

It boils down to this… Allah chose you. With His Infinite Knowledge, He looked into your heart and He gave you the gift of Islam. I know we're constantly pointing out the fact that there are over 1billion Muslims…but when you think about it the other way, 4 billion people aren't Muslim. You really were lucky- not even the Prophet's uncle was blessed with Islam. And as Muslims, our lives are dedicated to Allah.

I know it can be hard…but every time you choose Allah over yourself, Allah will reward you in ways you can't imagine. Talk to Allah and ask Him to make it easy for you to let go of prom. Ask Him to fill your heart with His love and love for what He loves.

Does this mean you can't celebrate? Of course, not. You can still have a party with your friends- of course, only girls. If you want something classy/ formal, maybe you can all pitch in and go to an expensive restaurant for dinner…or you can plan a special day with your friends- something like a "Memory Fiesta", where you look through old pictures and yearbooks and maybe even go to favorite places you'd hanged out at before together. Or if that doesn't sound like your thing…you could do something completely different- maybe take a hot air balloon ride together, or go to an amusement park, etc.

At the same time, you guys could celebrate finishing high school by giving something back to the community…like planting a tree together. That way, you'll have something to remind you of each other forever.

Islam is not against celebrating but it's about you celebrating the right way. And not losing sight of the big picture…jannah. Do you really want to risk losing eternal bliss for a few hours of fun?







14 wonderful sprinkely thoughts:

Stranger February 1, 2011 at 6:40 AM  

Mashallah, I really liked this advice. :)

athoofa February 1, 2011 at 8:06 AM  

Assalamualaikum...

I loved this piece mashaAllah! Gentle, yet firm advice. I know this is a big issue for many 12th graders. InshaAllah this will be of great help May Allah make it easy on all of us and keep us guided.

Love everything else posted too. You girls are doing a great job mashaAllah. May Allah bless you and reward you all. Aameen

Fida Islaih February 1, 2011 at 8:23 AM  

Salaam,

I still have a few years to go, but our school still have small dances before the big year and prom.

I usually answer dancing is not my thing. So thanks for a better answer. And for such great advice!

May Allah help us all!!

Salma's Visual Notes February 1, 2011 at 8:50 AM  

Wonderful advice, you have a gift, MashaAllah.

Zara A February 1, 2011 at 10:26 AM  

Masha'Allah, I was touched by your wonderful advice. I also had the same dilema because my prom is in a few months. But thank you sister for guiding me, I now know what my answer us. May Allah (SWT) bless you!
xx

Sabirah February 2, 2011 at 1:04 AM  

Assalamu'alaikum!

Wonderful advice, Masha'Allah!

I, myself, was dying to go to prom. I did a lot of things I'm not proud of in high school, but I'm happy I never even considered the possibility of me attending. My family and friends made my senior year so memorable. My entire family (all my cousins, aunts, uncles, etc.) attended my graduation. They were loud and silly. My parents threw me a nice and simple grad party in our backyard with all my family and friends. Looking back now...I think those memories would have outshined prom if I had gone! You may not see it now...but when you look back...you will be happy you didn't go.

Anonymous,  February 2, 2011 at 4:18 AM  

I WISH I READ THIS TWO YEARS AGO.

Little Miss Aunty February 2, 2011 at 6:32 AM  

Jazak Allah khair everyone for the kind words. :D May Allah help us keep our intentions solely for His Sake.

Zara: Congrats on being a senior! Enjoy your last year. Hopefully, you do really well! :D

Sabirah: Awww- family parties are the best! :D

Anon: Hey, just keep spreading the word. May Allah forgive all of our shortcomings.

Farah,  February 2, 2011 at 6:42 PM  

Salam,

Great advice mashaallah. I'm also a senior, although alhamdulillah, I never really considered going to prom. Islam aside, I feel like it's blown way out of proportion. If you really just want to celebrate, do what me and my friends are doing. We're organizing a party for all the muslim high school girls in our community, an anti-prom if you will. If you have a public university where you live, you might be able to rent out a hall for free or really cheap. Personally, I think parties are so much more fun when you're just around friends who you can trust and goof around with.

Inshaallah the rest of your senior year goes well :)

Little Auntie February 3, 2011 at 2:33 AM  

FARAH? Is this the farah who used to comment in the beginning? Good to see you back, hehe :)

We had an anti-prom, too, so to speak :)) and I totally agree with you about 'hanging out with friends you can TRUST and GOOF around with"...now that's fun :)

ummkhaleelmujahidah February 5, 2011 at 7:35 AM  

Assalam alaik! Wow this post reminds me of my senior year.. actually I went for prom (not that I'm proud to tell all of you but that was before I came to the Deen!) Just have to say that :

1) it's not worth the money since you have to pay for the tix and clothes if you're getting new ones. Reckon I spent almost $200 just on prom! And that was considered the least spent amongst my peers!

2) Too much free mixing. girls and guys taking pictures together, dancing, hugging, kissing urgh...

3) Alcohol!

4) During my year, we were given special discount to enter nearby clubs and buy drinks. And it's hard to resist when most of your schoolmates are hitting the clubs that night

5) Everyone's competing to be the best dressed (more like least dressed) that night. If you succumb to peer pressure, then you'd dress like everyone else. Even if you wear modest clothes, seeing people in such dressing is already a sin.

So for the sister who asked this question, it's not worth to attend prom. You can have your own mini party with your close friends and loads of yummy food (and you know its halal!) like what sis aunty suggested. And you'll save money too :)

Zarina Hassem February 17, 2011 at 10:54 AM  

As salaamu-alaykum sister

Masha'Allah you have a lovely blog. I really like the type of advice that you're giving people. It is our duty to enjoin the good and forbid the wrong and Alhamdullillah you are doing that with this blog- May Allah be pleased with you and accept all your efforts inshaa Allah!

Sarah February 21, 2011 at 4:51 PM  

MashaAllah loving the post and comments :)

I wanted to bring up a story as well. When I was in grade 8, a friend of mine (non-Muslim) had a sister in grade 12 who was going through the Prom Dilemma (hair, shoes, clothes, limo, date, ahh!). Afterwards, when her sister asked her (after she recovered from the after party as well sigh) how she liked it, she said it was overrated.

I mean, subhanAllah, I remember one girl posting when I was in grade 12 about how they 'get dressed up to get messed up.' If I was to die in that situation, in the environment, *EVEN IF* I didn't drink or associate with guys, I don't think I'd be happy with myself.

Alhamdulillah for the ni'mah of Islam which gives us fulfilling means of having fun - not just fleeting moments we'll never remember. WaAllahu'alim.

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Asalamu aialkum!
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