Undoubtedly, the result of all unlawful behaviour is depression and low self esteem. The higher the deviance between our beliefs and our practices, the greater the degree of depression. A person becomes ashamed and more depressed, and more ashamed, thus more depressed, perpetuating a vicious cycle. So it impacts us and our families and the way we view ourselves.
It is not wrong to have desires, it’s natural and human. But one needs to ensure that these desires are channelled properly as the Quran states. A foundation of Islam is the subjugation of passion, teaching self control and self discipline, where a person is in charge of who they become as opposed to one who is controlled by his own lust.
So with regards to both issues, it would be best to avoid this situation, or to stop immediately and replace it with something else. The first line of defence is, believing in Allah.
1. The best remedy stated is marriage.
2. The next one is fasting.
Gluttony and lust are interlinked, where one can easily subdue lust by reducing his calorie intake, and thus fasting is perfect.
Bilal Philips, in response to a question concerning the latter topic (i.e., masturbation), stated that fasting is given to us to remedy the situation. There is no explicit mention of this act, but when the options for dealing with these situations were given, fasting was recommended, so that is what we should do in this regard.
3. Remembering that we are instructed to lower our gaze.
“Tell the believing men to reduce [some] of their vision and guard their private parts (modesty). That is purer for them. Indeed, Allah is acquainted with what they do. And tell the believing women to reduce [some] of their vision and guard their private parts and not expose their adornment except that which [necessarily] appears thereof...” (Surah An-Nur:30-32)
4. As stated in the above ayah, we are commanded to guard our chastity, so we have to stop or prevent acts which may lead to it.
5. Avoid shamelessness, like watching questionable scenes on television (T.V.), common on everyday programs, while other family members are in the room with you. We should try to feel disgusted by this behaviour and avoid it.
"Pornography is the symptom of a disease. The disease is called shamelessness, and the disease is much greater than the symptom." Nouman Ali Khan
6. Be with new, better company.
7. Replace the behaviour with something constructive, not necessarily religious (advice courtesy of Nouman Ali Khan). Take up a hobby, like jogging, or some sport, or join an art class. Assist your family with whatever they need help with. Volunteer for a cause you support.
8. Know that Allah is watching and He understands how hard it is for you and pray that He makes it easier for you.
9. Be patient.
10. Ask Allah for help. I seem to keep seeing this one everywhere: do not underestimate the power of du’aa.
11. IMPORTANT - TALK ABOUT IT. ADDRESS THE ISSUE WITH YOUR OLDER CHILDREN. As uncomfortable as it is, the problem doesn’t go away on its own; pretending that it will, will not make it happen. The reality is that, your children will be exposed to shamelessness. We need to empower and educate before someone else does. Approach the topic gently, asking if the child has a facebook page or email account. Talk about how these strange things pop up sometimes. Ask them how they deal with it, and hopefully they will say they will delete it immediately. Discuss how to handle it. (Sheikh Yassir Fazaga)
To sum up, keep hope alive. Irrespective of how large the sin, its greatness or number, Allah has promised that His Forgiveness always supersedes this. Even if your sins are like a mountain, sincerely seeking forgiveness will cause Allah to convert it into a mountain of good. Now that is special. If you feel the ‘how could I have done that’ feeling, this is an indication that one feels shame, placed there by Allah; a good sign that there is still dignity in you. (Nouman Ali Khan) Sometimes mere knowledge does not help, memorising the whole Quran will not help, except submitting to Allah. Acknowledge your weakness, and sincerely repent.
Ramadan is the perfect time to discipline and incorporate positive practices. Its a boot camp, with heavenly benefits. Be your own drill sergeant; make yourself your own hero. Subjugate passion. There is hope.
Your Video Guide (FYI) : Points taken from the following lectures
· Shamelessness "Lower Your Gaze" by Ustadh Nouman Ali Khan
· I committed fornication(Zina) and I'm so ashamed of myself
· Exposing Pornography - Sh. Yassir Fazaga
· Q3. Ruling on masturbation?
· iSLAM-Rulling on masturbation-Fatwa sheikh Assim al Hakeem
· Masturbation and Islam: The illness and its Cure (Documentary)
· Masturbation is Haraam For A Muslim-Shaykh Uthaymeen
· Just Harmless Fun? Understanding the Impact of Pornography
I'd love to hear your views on this topic. Please post in the comments section below! :)