Oct 17, 2012

Of Relationships and Love - Part 1

By Amina Wasi


Love. Four simple letters yet they evoke an array of emotions and responses. In this context, the love that I am referring to is that which develops between people of the opposite genders. In love we sacrificie everything for our beloved. In love, we become defensive of our beloved. In love, we are willing to fight for our beloved! In love, we love selflessly! Love is something no one is exempt from. In one point of our lives or another, we have most likely experienced it or in the lives of those that are close to us. The degree of which differing from one person to another. The focus here, however, is relationships that many of the youth seem to be involved in. Some of which are headed towards the right direction but many of which are headed towards the wrong direction. Improper Relationships.

Whenever you get into an improper relationship, a part of you dies. Your ability to trust, confide in and even love someone again may decrease. This is because you had such a strong emotional attachment with the person and you had high expectations. In your mind, 'he' was perfect. In your mind, 'we' were perfect. You acted like he was your husband and held hands, talked all night and felt the need not to wear hijab in front of him because you thought, 'I'm going to marry him anyways'. All the while, deep inside your heart and at the back of your mind, you knew all this was wrong. Something was disturbing your heart through it all but you pushed it aside and made excuses for yourself. Had you listened and gave up that which was disturbing your heart, you would have realized this was a mercy from God to save you from further heartbreak. However, when you ignored it, you became more vulnerable to the situation and a prisoner in a prison which you yourself put yourself in. 

Relationships have various degrees and if you are in one now, it may not be so extreme and you can just be talking but for some it goes to the extent of very haram situations. Regardless, even if you tell yourself, you are only talking about the deen (all night!?) so it's fine, know that it's not fine because one step leads to another no matter how religious you think you are. It's shaitaan's deception to you. And finally, in the end, it doesn't work out; your parents aren't agreeing or he turns out to be a complete jerk or something else. Know that since your relationship was improper, there was no Barakah in it from God since its inception and you broke many of God's commandments, so how can you have a favorable end to it?

But what if I am genuinely in love?
For those who genuinely are in love and not just acting on their temporary infatuations should safeguard this love because it can prove to be a beautiful thing if not stained with our lusts and desires before marriage. We cannot control who we might essentially end up falling in love with but we can control the actions it leads us to. If the love prompts you to cross the boundaries of Islam where you are meeting secretly with the person, dating, engaging in obscene activity with the person then this is plunging yourself in a pool of illusions of love. Whatever leads you to disobeying God can never be right. However, if you are not doing any of these things but really want to consider this person for marriage because of what you have observed of this person in a natural setting. i.e, good character, piety, acts of kindness, behavior, then there is nothing wrong in that inshaa'Allah. 

The crucial part is in how you would go about the process. Allah has ordained marriage to satisfy and channel our natural inclinations and desires towards the opposite gender in a proper manner and through it you are even rewarded by Allah. Which other religion rewards you for this?! If you develop feelings for someone strong enough to consider them for marriage then get your family and those who are responsible and pious involved. Everyone’s situation may be different and this requires different approaches so make use of your local Imams and Mashaaikh. They are there to direct you towards a discourse pleasing to God while considering your feelings and situation. That's what the companions did! They referred to Prophet Sallalahu Alyehi Wasallam. It may or may not surprise you that that Prophet Muhammad Sallalahu Alyehi Wasallam recognized love as a natural feeling so long as it was within the bounds of the Sharee’ah.

Prophet Muhammad Sallalahu Alyehi Wasallam attitude towards those who were in love... (TO BE CONTINUED Inshaa'Allah)

I'd love to hear your views on this topic. Please post in the comments section below! :)


very good article, cant wait for part two.

MashAllah great article sis. Love it. I will definitely share with many of my friends and family. JazakAllah :)

Nice article! However, what about someone who is religious, who finds another suitable for marriage, but it isn't the right time for her to get married? This could be for a number of reasons, such as; she is still in school or too young, or that she has older siblings that are not married yet. There are many road blocks in the way, yet she still finds a suitor that she has ideal charecteristics. What should she do?

You said "it isn't the right time for her to get married". I think the question at hand here is if she feels she's not ready yet or if people around her make feel that way.

I'm no expert but I've observed similar cases and the advice given in each case. If she feels she's not ready then she should pray istikhaara and then find out whether or not the guy is willing to wait for her to finish her studies. If he's willing, there are halal ways for them to communicate with each other until then.

If the girl thinks she's ready then the first thing to do is pray istikhaara and inshaa Allaah she'll be guided as to what she should do. Secondly, if she thinks she can get married and still complete her studies and her husband to be supports her then she should consider marriage. Thirdly, the practice of older siblings marrying first is really a cultural preference in most places. Sometimes simply speaking to parents and explaining how marriage would prevent potential haraam acts helps the situation.

Hope i helped somehow inshaa Allaah

MashaAllah love this write up!
To the point and something that needs much attention!
Jazak Allah khair!
InshaAllah the 2nd article will be published soon!

Salam alaykum SisterNur,

JazakAllah khair for your reply. I think Sister Zai articulated much of what I would have said.

I am not sure if you are alluding to this or not but being religious does not mean you can be in a relationship. Religious or not, we should not put ourselves through situations where we would have to test our Emaan or religiosity.

As sister Zai laid out some alternatives, the sister can pray istikhara and speak to her local Imam for further guidance.

Another alternative might be that the sister can do Katb Al Kitab known as, 'celibate marriage.' It's basically what many youth opt for because they want to marry one another but for certain reasons (studies, financially unstable, etc) they cannot live and move in together. You may see this article: http://muslimmatters.org/2008/06/21/the-nikah-kitaba-katb-al-kitab-survival-guide/

Perhaps the sister can speak to her parents regarding Katb al Kitab.

I hope this helps inshaa'Allah.

- Amina Wasi

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