To music or not to music...

>> Sunday, June 8, 2014



Aslamualaikum Warahmatullahi wa barakaatoo, Aunties!!!
Um….HI!! Before I begin my question, I just wanna say that you are the BEST aunties in the whole world! May Allah reward you all for helping out your fellow Muslim Sisters, Ameen.
First, I would like to tell some basic things about myself. I am a Pakistani girl who moved to America about five years ago. I am in eighth grade and 15 years of age. To be honest, in the beginning, when I was younger, I would agree that I was a very bad image for a Muslim. I’m not saying that I murdered anyone or anything like that, but, I didn't do many things like many pious ones do (Pray, fast, Quran etc.). But later on, the Light of Allah came through the window and slowly turned my dark room into one illuminating with the Light of Allah SWT. What I’m trying to say here is that I have changed a lot, thanks to the Mercy of Allah SWT. I am way much more practicing than I was before. Some few examples include:
-I started praying five times a day (Its been years now since I kept that, I’m so proud!)
-I read Quran everyday (It’s like oxygen, without it the day is just incomplete and weird…..)
-I recently started wearing Hijab to school
-I fast every Ramadan
-I’m always inviting others to the Path of Allah on an attempt to fulfilling my duty as a Servant Of Allah
And I don't know many more……..
The whole point of me saying that was that I can’t seem to put my mind into why I would still have a place for music in my heart after doing all that? I severely needed help in this issue and couldn’t go to my parents for they love Bollywood music like I do…(btw, the whole music thing is what I inherited from my family I guess…)
I used to listen to a lot of music, but once realizing that it was haram, I stopped. It’s been almost two months since I stopped, MashAllah. But the thing is, despite the fact that I don't listen to it, I still have feelings in my heart that I really want to. Sometimes, I even hum out a song or completely start singing it. I fear Allah Most High, but I don't know what to do in a situation like this. I have done my full research on this topic only to find out that it’s very controversial and that just makes me punch the wall even more.
Some scholars say that it is, using the Quran (31;6) and Hadith. But, at the same time, some say it isn't haram as an entirety and that good music is allowed. I do believe that music is Haram. Eventhough, the Quran (31;6) doesn’t necessarily say music, I feel as if it’s saying that indirectly. But then, today, while reading the Quran with commentary of Abdullah Yusuf Ali, I came across an ayah where it says how Believers shall have anything their hearts may yearn for in the heavens, and in the commentary, Yusuf Ali uses examples something on the lines of….” In the Gardens, Believers can have anything they may wish for. Example, a musician’s heaven will be filled with music, a mathematicaians heaven will be filled with math, and the artist’s heaven would be filled with fine arts and beauty.” Why does he mention the musician part?
And many of other translators don’t neceserrily define “Idle Talks” in Quran (31;6) as musin in it’s entirety, including Yusuf Ali.
 So…….I guess Im just in severe need of help…..I am sorry if I disturbed you or anything like that….I know that you wonderful aunties have something really inspirational for me and something that would really help me. I didn't mean to make it too long but since I did…..ShorryFrowning face…..
May Allah reward you with many many many many many rewards and join us all in Jannah ( also b/c I really wanna meet you all in real life, or I should say in the next life) Ameen.
Thank you, Love,
BismaGrowing heart


Wa alaykum assalam wa rahmatullahi wa barakatahu Bisma! :)

First of all, let me apologize for the extreme delay in reply, but unfortunately we Aunties sometimes get busy with the day to day overload too ;) However, that is no excuse and I am really really sorry!

Secondly, let me tell you how very proud I am of you-15 and doing so much for the sake of Allah (swt)! May He reward you immensely and keep increasing you in goodness. Ameen. We need more 15 year old Muslimahs like you in the world today :)

Music unfortunately, is a very controversial and much talked about topic in the Muslim world today. Being who I am, even if there wasn't so much controversy about it, I'd still be a bit creeped out by it considering how much it's being propagated-being subtly seeped into the subconscious mind of every living person, no matter whether they want to or not. It's on TV, in restaurants, at the malls, petrol stations, the phones. Basically, it's difficult to stay away from it, even if you try really hard! Which, if one thinks about it, is very very-there is no other word for it-creepy! It's due to this far reaching presence that it has become so talked about, because by the consensus of the earlier scholars, it was haraam, and that was it. No question!

Considering that you've researched so much on it, I won't delve into the allowance of music in Islam too much. However, for the readers who either haven't come across it, or haven't looked into it, let me just quote a few ahadith:

The Prophet sallAllahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said:
“There will come a people from my Ummah who will seek to make lawful zina (fornication and adultery), the wearing of silk (for men), the drinking of win and the use of musical instruments. Some people will stay at the side of the mountain and when their shepherd comes in the evening to ask them for his needs, they will say : ‘Come back to us tomorrow’. Then Allah will destroy them during the night by causing the mountain to fall upon them while He changes others into apes and swine. They will remain in this state until the Day of Resurrection.”
[Bukhari]


“Music grows hypocrisy in the heart just as water causes the crops to grow.” [Bayhaqi]

Also, here is a complete answer about Music, dealing with the doubtful matters too, for those who are interested:

http://islamqa.info/en/5000


Now even if, thanks to the multiple arguments floating around in the world about it (they really made my head go round when I first started looking up the issue!), you still feel some doubt about whether music is allowed or not, you should use this hadith as a golden rule:

An-Nu'man ibn Bashir said, "I heard the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, say, 'The halal is clear and the haram is clear. But between the two there are doubtful things about which most people have no knowledge. Whoever exercises caution with regard to what is doubtful, shows prudence in respect of his deen and his honour. Whoever gets involved in the doubtful things is like a herdsman who grazes his animals near a private preserve (hima). He is bound to enter it. Every king has a private preserve and the private preserve of Allah on His earth are the things that He has made forbidden. There is lump of flesh in the body, the nature of which is that when it is sound, the entire body is sound, and when it is corrupt, the entire body is corrupt - it is the heart.'"
[Agreed upon]

Having done with that, there is something important you should know. Wanting to listen to music does NOT make you a bad muslim. It only makes you human. Yep, you read that right. Wanting to do haraam things doesn't make us munafiq or kaafir or even a bad muslim. First of all, we all (you, me, our parents, even the scholars!) have something called a nafs, and its duty is to make us want to do haraam stuff. And then there is our lifelong enemy, Mr. Shaytan who just loves conspiring with dear ol' nafs to make us sin, so that we help him achieve his target--> of misleading Allah's beloved creation, the humankind.

The only task you have is to try your level best to not give in to your nafs or shaytan, and keep striving against them. This is known as Sabr. There are three levels of sabr:
1) Patience in times of difficulty.
2) Patience in staying away from sins.
3) Patience in obeying Allah (swt) also known as istiqamat, that is mainting good deeds over time.

Therefore, for staying away from music you're getting the reward of two kinds of sabr-staying away from sin and persevering in following the commands of Allah (swt)! And we all know that sabr is a very important component for going to jannah inshaAllah:

By time,
Indeed, mankind is in loss,
Except for those who have believed and done righteous deeds and advised each other to truth and advised each other to patience.
-Surah Asr


Now I know from experience just how hard it is to stay away from music. It's not easy and it takes a lot of time and patience and perseverance. There might be times when you fall, but you must not despair, because that is another trick of our dearest enemy, Mr. Shaytan. In fact, you must use that experience as a lesson for yourself, make istighfar, get up and try again!


Music is an addiction, [as also proven by a study done at McGill University: http://news.medill.northwestern.edu/chicago/news.aspx?id=176870 ] and thus can be cured just like any other addiction. The first step is recognizing the problem. The second step can be either of the two: tapering (that is slowly decreasing dosage until you reach zero) or going cold turkey (that is quitting all at once).Being Muslim, I'd suggest the cold turkey approach because we really don't know whether we will draw our next breath or not, and thus must always be focused on the now rather than the tomorrow :) However, you must then find alternates. Listen to nasheeds without music (Zain Bhika is a good choice, so are the ealier nasheeds of Dawud Wharnsby and Yusuf Islam :) ), listen to recitations of the Quran by your favourite Qaris, listen to lectures instead of music. Save your ears for the music of Jannah :D
Do not berate yourself for falling once in a while, just harden your resolve. Never give up. And the occasional humming? That'll take some time to be replaced by nasheeds and Surahs instead ;)

Keep striving and growing in your nearness to Allah (swt)! May we all meet in Jannah inshaAllah (and maybe this life too, who knows? :D )
Keep us in your duas, we need them.

Wassalam,



5 wonderful sprinkely thoughts:

Aziza June 8, 2014 at 4:17 PM  

Assalamualaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatu,

I am an ex-music addict myself. Music sort of reminds me of a drug, it gives you a temporary high and lets you escape to another world and of course, it is addictive. Sometimes I will still find tunes playing in my head even to this day. But, Allah does indeed make it easy to give up such things if we have a firm intention. Really, it's not worth it because I would feel much too guilty to indulge in it anymore. Giving it up feels so right when you think of the hereafter.

May Allah reward you greatly for the advice and make it easy for the questioner and all of us to give up things for His sake and may He replace these things with something far better. (: <3

Aziza June 8, 2014 at 4:19 PM  

Btw, MashaAllah I am so proud of the questioner for how far you have come...keep it up sis and may Allah reward you. <3

Bisma,  June 8, 2014 at 4:43 PM  

Thank you to all and thank you especially to Different Yet Similar! May Allah SWT reward you all all and give us all Taqwa! Ameen.

FlowersBloom June 8, 2014 at 4:50 PM  

Asalamu alaykum dear sis !

I, too, am an ex-music addict. To me, it was pike air. It pretty much dictated how I felt. I'd the song was sad I'd be sad. If happy I'd be happy. And if the song was lonely...well you get the point :'p

Anywhooo , it basically controlled my life. So much so that I even went to sleep to the sound of music ! (Astaghfirullah!) Imagine dying that way.

And really, giving it up all starts with an intention. Ask Allah subhanahu was ta'ala to help you. Replace all the songs with nasheeds. And then, when you feel you are ready, replace those with Quran. Inshallah you'll be rid of music for good. :)))))

BUT I can honestly say that it IS hard. Sometimes you'll hear a tune in your head, you might even find yourself singing! Seek Allah's refuge from the shaitan and recite an ayah or two. :)

I pray for you sis! I know that it can be hard, but persevere! You can do it :)

And I ask Allah to grant us all the highest rank in jannah and to award you & the aunties for all your hard wok. Ameen.

Wa alaykum asalam !~ (:

Seeker of Guidance June 9, 2014 at 9:48 AM  

Jazakumullah khairan kaseera for asking a good question and giving a great answer!

Two articles on the topic
http://callofthedusk.wordpress.com/2014/05/21/best-song-ever/
http://rialive.wordpress.com/2011/04/20/whip-our-hijab-back-and-forth/

A quote from one of them:

"I also mentioned I’m a recovering song-aholic. Emphasis on recovering. There’s no 'recovered' stage. The minute you lead yourself to believe otherwise, you are going to drop your guard."

That's important to keep in mind. It's an ongoing struggle.

That said, I find that listening to a favourite Surah in the voice of a favourite reciter frequently imprints the recitation in the mind the same way songs get stuck in there. So, get addicted to a Surah, listen to it, read up on it, listen to its explanation, love the heck out of it, and it will take up mental energy and what can be a better occupation for your brain than processing the Quran? Otherwise when you're idle mental energy fires here there and everywhere and songs start popping up.

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Asalamu aialkum!
Well, what do you think? You know, you're part of the team, as well. Please help a sister out and share your own advice/experiences/etc. One for all and all for one =)
P.S. I reserve the right to remove any disrespectful comment ;)

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