Saturday, February 14, 2015

Is it Valentine or vice?

We are drawing closer to a day that marks the second year after the demise of super model, Reeva Steenkamp.  She died at the hands of her man-friend, paralympian Oscar Prestorius, who claims to have accidently shot her by mistakening her for an intruder.  This tragic incident took place on the eve of 14 February 2013, more commonly known as Valentines Day.

This is the day where every lovestruck man is deemed to state his doting love to his beloved.  A day where friendships blossom into love and romance and unforgettable gestures of love.  These gestures are done in memory of saint Valentine.  Actually a name which was given to two of the ancient 'martyrs' of the Christian Church.  When the Romans embraced Christianity, they continued to celebrate the Feast of Love which I will mention further on.  Non the less, they changed it from the pagan concept of 'spiritual love' to another concept known as the 'martyrs of love' , represented by Saint Valentine who had advocated love and peace, for which cause he was martyred, according to their claims.  It was also called the Feast of Lovers, and Saint Valentine was considered to be the patron saint of lovers.

As for the 'feast of love' which I promised to mention earlier; 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 thereafter they would wash the blood away with milk.  After that there would be a great parade, with these two youths leading the gang, who would go down marching through 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.

By accepting and celebrating this mortifying day, are we not approving it to be moral and lawful? In actual fact, this day is not part of Deen and has no basis in Shar'ee.  Can we not see that the rituals carried out at these festivals are totally barbaric?  We are regressing by imitating the uncivilized practices of the Pagan worshipers, when in actual fact we are suppose to be progressing when it comes to intellectual and moral affairs.  Only people of by-gone eras and ancient times use to  carry out despicable acts and sacrifice their blood and bodies to deities or other ancestral beings.  This was due to a lack of knowledge and wisdom.  We are living in the 21 century, how more backward are we going to go?  It's as though history does repeat itself in some trait or the other.

Allah Ta'allah states in the glorious Quraan:

“For every nation We have ordained religious ceremonies which they must follow.”

[al-Hajj 22:67]

It is disturbing to see that muslims shy away from practicing their own religion, and therefore resort to the formalities of another.  Allah Ta'allah has prescribed to every nation a set of laws and customs to be implemented and followed.  If the reason why we give in to the temptations of the kufaar is because we are weak in Imaan.  Then we should make use of another alternative or avenue which is part of deen.  By attending the weekly taalim or majlis at the masjid, perhaps even listening to a bayaan or reading a good book it will Inshallah guide us towards that which is liked in the eyes of Allah Ta'allah and not that which angers him.

Nabi (Salallahu alaihi wasalam) is reported to have mentioned in a Hadith:

“Whoever imitates a people is one of them.”

When we imitate these cringe-worthy festivals, respect and consider them to be apart of our lifestyle, then how will be raised with Nabi (Salallahu alaihi wasalam) on the day of Qiyamah.  If we had true love for him, we would abstain from the things that he prohibited us from.

Aa’ishah  (Radiyallahu Anha)  narrates that Nabi (Salallahu alaihi wasalam) said:

 “Whoever introduces anything into this matter of ours that is not part of it will have it rejected.”

It is said that whatever a person innovates into Deen will be rejected, because if what they innovate were correct it would be substantiated in Quraan and Sunnah, and we would find the Sahaba (radiyallahu Anhum) do it.  May Allah Ta'allah make it easy for us to stay away from all sort of bid'ah and innovation that is becoming more prevalent in todays times.

This day undoubtedly promotes zina, that would lead to love and passion between two people.  It contradicts the sunnah of Nikkah, because it encourages the exchange of gifts, flowers and chocolates to the opposite gender.  Some congratulates their 'friends', whilst others wear red and attend indecent parties at clubs etc; where there is mixing of men and women.  All of the above mentioned things will at some point lead to immorality.  Shop keepers should stay away from selling gifts or items that are purchased in order to celebrate this day.  Bear in mind the virtue of earning halaal income.  Ask yourself: 'Is what I'm earning from a halaal source?" It is also up to us consumers not to buy these goods or help advertise in any way.

To those who are single, keep in mind that the haraam and zina done before marriage takes out the barakah in your nikah. You have a reputation to live up to, that is what your future spouse would look at before considering you as a prospective husband/wife. And to those who are married, love is not only set to a fixed day, its meant to be expressed to your rightful spouse each morning and evening.  The one who is sincere towards himself and Allah Ta'allah  should keep away from sin and the means that lead to it, like that we will be  stopping shaitaan dead in his tracks.

May Allah Ta'allah shroud us in his mercy and forgiveness.  And save us from every sin, and grant us the  benefit from every good deed, success in attaining Jannah and deliverance from Fire.


written by Fatima Moolla

Fatima Moolla is a teenage author from Devon, a little farm town bordering Gauteng and Mpumalanga.  She frequently writes opinion pieces and articles on her blog Timeless Teenz. She believes that "success lies in believing in yourself."

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