Part 1

We are in a mess. We are in a moral and ethical meltdown. No, it's not lying, cheating, gossiping or anything that is related to the tongue, it's the other part that our beloved Prophet ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) asked us to safe guard—the part between the two legs.

“Whoever guarantees me (the chastity of) what is between his legs (i.e. his private parts), and what is between his jaws (i.e., his tongue), I guarantee him Paradise.”  [Sahīh Bukhāri]

 Ten years ago, when a very close friend called me crying, about her husband whom she'd caught watching porn while releasing himself, at first I couldn't believe what she'd just said. Her husband isn't just some ordinary Muslim, with his long beard and gazes lower; he'd been one of the most active members of the community, always at the mosque, always organizing lectures, raising his kids with high religious goals. I remember staying awake all night, tossing and turning trying to resolve the controversy in my mind of what was displayed of that brother and what I'd just discovered. These two characteristics couldn't be combined in one person. I comforted myself, “If he is into porn then he is just not a good Muslim, no matter what he does outwardly.” That was my resolution, because I simply couldn't fathom how a practicing Muslim man could enjoy the sight of naked women—not just one look—but to the point where he actually releases himself from the forbidden pleasure.

Fast-forward ten years, another sister called me, crying, bawling about her marital issues, confessing, “My husband sees prostitutes.” Her husband is, also, not only a well known young Muslim of the community but someone that practicing Muslim parents would desire for their daughter's prospective husband. My reaction this time was vastly different; I responded to her matter-of-factly, “It happens sometimes.”

Why had I become so desensitized? What happened within the last ten years that my reaction changed so drastically? Why wasn't the world coming to an end anymore? Why wasn't I shocked, surprised, or even slightly moved by emotions? In fact, the minute she started crying and said she was having marital issues, I narrowed it down to two causes, porn or sex addiction.

How unfortunate of a reality check; I was exposed to several cases of devout Muslims suffering through porn addiction, which inevitably led to sexual exploration  beyond monogamy. I don't like to call it addiction because the level of illegitimate sexual activities varies from occasional slips to being a complete addict. I went from being shocked, to denying that this even existed amongst our communities, to accepting that pornography and sex addiction has now plagued us, leaving our Ummah in a deep sexual mess.

Once acknowledged, I had to understand why it happens and how it happens. That's when I extended my research. Other than the fact that it is a trap of Shayān, I had to comprehend male sexual psychology. I read extensively about this topic, bought books, read articles, and even consulted a sex therapist who is also a good friend.

Consequently, I learned to accept the fact that a man may be devout in his dīn and, at the same time, he can be involved in the disturbing fitnah of sexual cravings, giving into his carnal desires in a way that doesn't suit his apparent Muslim identity, yet his nafs agrees to obey his ultimate enemy.

One morning a few years ago, taking a break from my kids, I was enjoying a late breakfast alone at Denny's when a woman from the next table started talking to me. She was younger, Caucasian, dressed in good ol' jeans and a t-shirt, seemed like a person I could carry on a conversation with. In the middle of our talk, when I asked her what she does, she quietly said, “I'm a hooker.”

I almost choked on my coffee. I wasn't sure if I was supposed to continue talking to her or turn away. The irony of the situation didn't escape me, her and me, on the same table, chit-chatting. I was seriously disturbed, and it took me a few minutes to remind myself that I had no right to judge her and I had absolutely no right to think of myself as superior.

Later during our talk, she asked me about our “multiple” prayers a day. Surprised, I asked how she knew, “Oh, I've a lot of Moozlim customers, [Most of my customers are Muslim].”

I was heartbroken, I wish she hadn't said that, I wish she'd named some other religion's followers to be her most common customers, but she didn't. And I didn't see any reason why she should be lying to me.

“Oh yeah I have plenty of men from your faith come to me, I can tell by their names… [sometimes, I've seen them pray] and sometimes they like to talk.” Shocked and ashamed I bombarded her with questions about the Muslim men who were her most common customers. She named a particular ethnicity among the Muslims being really rough (UPDATE: My original line was removed. Rest assured it was never intended to be a racist comment. In fact, it was in defense of my brothers.)

What was I supposed to say to her? That while I want to tell you about my religion, I am ashamed that the men you have the worst experience with, are actually my brothers in faith? Should my brothers even be having any illegitimate relationships with her to begin with?

I felt sick in my stomach, completely grossed out, almost puking… not at her—the prostitute—but at my own brothers!

I don't understand why I had to run into a prostitute, and why I learned that her common customers were Muslim men—but it happened, and I'm sure that there was a good reason it happened.

Perhaps it helped me realize the extent of this disease spread out in our Ummah, perhaps it made me see the other side or it helped me accept that many Muslim men have another controversial life.

Even if I assume that those brothers seeing that hooker were not practicing enough, I cannot turn a blind eye on those sisters who had shared their personal stories, married to some practicing Muslims, regular masjid attendees, with long beards and high motivations of leading a good Islamic life while some even wake up for qiyām and memorize Qur'ān.

I could not close my ears when a respected shaykh highlighted the fact that we would be surprised to find some of the famous active da'ees  inviting women into their hotel rooms. (This is not meant to make the reader doubt da'ees, Shuyukh, and active personalities in the community, or worse, judge them. It's to bring awareness that this is a growing problem about which we thought our communities are immune to, but unfortunately that is far from the truth.)

I asked myself, could this be happening because we are not raising our sons correctly? But many men suffering through this problem were raised in good Muslim families. A recent case of a hafidh-ul-Qur'ān left me flabbergasted and scared.

What about my son? Am I doing enough to protect him? What can I do to make sure he doesn't fall prey to this corruption? If so many men in this fitan came from good families, were raised upon high moral values, received a good tarybiyyah at home, then what went wrong?

Desperately, I had a long conversation with my son, appropriate for his age omitting unnecessary details, about this rising fitan in our Muslim Ummah. I was heartbroken that at the tender age of 12, I had to address such an intense issue, but unfortunately that's the world in which I am raising him. His schoolmates have brought up the juicy details of porn magazines and porn channels, but alḥamdulillāh he asked me about it instead of falling into anything wrong (Allāhu yafadhhu).

He didn't understand why someone would resort to such disgusting actions. I had to be honest with him, “Girls that seem so icky and unbearable right now to you will turn into some amazing being once your hormones kick in, Shayān uses that attraction to make a person give into their desires, and men end up obeying Shayān.”

Confused, he asked, “How do I make sure that I don't do any fahash (immoral/indecent)?”

Now that's the million-dollar question isn't it?

After seeing the struggle among practicing Muslims—torn between their faith and their carnal desires, struggling to get out yet slipping again and again, hurting themselves, destroying their marriages, making us lose trust, and the destruction that this sin causes for an individual, I can't just cast it aside. How do we make sure that our loved ones and even ourselves don't fall into this sin?

Then an answer dawned at me, alhamdulillāh. I was able to look back into his eyes with certainty and respond, “Make du'ā' for yourself!” I said confidently. “From this day onwards, develop a habit of making du'ā' in every sajdah of yours, 'Oh Allah please keep me chaste, pure, away from the lewdness, and amongst those who guarded their private parts.' Start today and if your du'ā' is accepted, inshā'Allāh you will be protected because it is only Allah who can protect you from this evil.”

Allahumma ja'alni min at-tayyibeen, wal mutta-tahireen, wal muhsineen, wa ma'al ladheena yahfadhohum fooroojahum.

 

 

Editor's note: We apologize for the publishing of  the reference to a racial group- it should not have been included despite any good intentions. 

 

 

To be continued…

215 Responses

  1. Gibran

    Assalamualaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh

    Good article Alhamdulilah. The dua at the end reminds me of the dua of the Prophet sallahualayhiwasalam for the young man who wanted to commit zina. And it’s good this is hidden because this is better than it being open.

    However, while we must be careful to not consider ourselves superior, or put people down, we mustn’t go to the extreme.

    “Consequently, I learned to accept the fact that a man may be devout in his dīn and, at the same time, he can be involved in the disturbing fitnah of sexual cravings, giving into his carnal desires in a way that doesn’t suit his apparent Muslim identity, yet his nafs agrees to obey his ultimate enemy.”

    One isn’t devout in din and at the same time doing major sins and immoralities.

    The Prophet (saw) said: “No adulterer is a believer at the time when he is committing adultery.” Narrated by Al-Bukhaari (2475) and Muslim (57).

    He (saw) also said: “If a man commits zina, faith comes out of him and hovers over him like a cloud, then when he stops, faith returns to him.” Narrated by Abu Dawood (4960) and al-Tirmidhi (2625); classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh Abi Dawood.

    And there is the hadith about people having deeds on yawm al Qiyamah like mountains but then they are destroyed( turned to dust or something, I can’t exactly remember.) That is because did good deeds but in secret they were committing these horrific sins.

    And it’s even worse if the man is calling people to Islam like you say. Because,

    Imam Ahmad reported that Abu Wa’il said, “While I was riding behind Usamah, he was asked, `Why not advise `Uthman’ He said, `Do you think that if I advise him I should allow you to hear it I advise him in secret, and I will not start something that I would hate to be the first to start. I will not say to a man, `You are the best man,’ even if he was my leader, after what I heard from the Messenger of Allah .’ They said, `What did he say’ He said, `I heard him say,

    «يُجَاءُ بِالرَّجُلِ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامةِ فَيُلْقَى فِي النَّار فَتَنْدَلِقُ بِه أَقْتَابُهُ فيَدُورُ بِهَا فِي النَّار كَمَا يَدُورُ الْحِمَارُ بِرَحَاهُ فيُطِيفُ بِهِ أَهْلُ النَّار فَيَقُولُون: يَا فُلَانُ ما أَصَابَكَ؟ أَلَمْ تَكُنْ تَأْمُرُنَا بِالْمَعْرُوف وَتَنْهَانَا عَنِ الْمُنْكَرِ؟ فَيَقُولُ: كُنْتُ آمرُكُمْ باِلْمَعْرُوفِ وَلَا آتِيهِ وَأَنْهَاكُمْ عَنِ الْمُنْكَرِ وَآتِيه»

    (A man will be brought on the Day of Resurrection and thrown in the Fire. His intestines will fall out and he will continue circling pulling them behind him, just as the donkey goes around the pole. The people of the Fire will go to that man and ask him, `What happened to you Did you not used to command us to do righteous acts and forbid us from committing evil’ He will say, `Yes. I used to enjoin righteousness, but refrained from performing righteousness, and I used to forbid you to perform from evil while I myself did it.’).”’

    This Hadith was also recorded by Al-Bukhari and Muslim
    http://tinyurl.com/mo8fkxn

    One mistake that is made is that we go so far in being non-judgmental that we stop treating this as a sin and more of a disease that these Muslims are victims of. I hear about porn addiction being “treated” as if there is no sin involved-the poor man is just a victim of the internet!

    But this isn’t right. Yes, there are sinful diseases, but these diseases are sins that Allah punishes with a constantly painful punishment. I haven’t read an ayah or hadith where Allah punishes for cancer. We mustn’t forget that the real problem lies in the akhirah.

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    • Gibran

      Here is the story of the young man who wanted to commit zina from this site(mashaa Allah, may Allah have mercy on whoever had a part in translating the tafsir and making this site.)

      http://tinyurl.com/mw48h3q

      Here is the dua of the Prophet sallahualayhiwasalam for the young man.

      «اللَّهُمَّ اغْفِرْ ذَنْبَهُ، وَطَهِّرْ قَلْبَهُ، وَأَحْصِنْ فَرْجَه»

      (O Allah, forgive his sin, purify his heart and guard his chastity.) “After that the young man never paid attention to anything of that nature.”

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    • The Salafi Feminist

      Actually, it IS possible to be a pious, righteous, and devout Muslim, and still fall into these grave sins.
      You forget that even amongst the Sahabah, there were those who committed zina – not just one or two, but several of them. Al-Ghaamidiyyah and Maa’iz are only two examples; if you go through the ahadeeth, you will find references to more incidents of Companions who confessed to zina.

      Let’s not throw the baby out with the bath water; committing these serious sins does not take the individual completely out of the fold of Islam. Amongst the Sahabah were those who committed zina, who were alcoholics, who committed such sins as we today consider to be ‘beyond hope.’

      However, we need to remember that as long as as a Muslim holds firm to laa ilaaha illAllah, Muhammad RasulAllah, then although they will be punished severely in the Aakhirah for sins such as zina, riba, alcoholism, etc. they are STILL considered Muslims and will inshaAllah enter Jannah.

      Although this issue is extremely serious, and needs to be dealt with accordingly, we have to remember that those who have been sucked into these sins are still our brothers (and sisters) in Islam, and thus deserve mercy from us – as RasulAllah had mercy even on those who were being stoned to death for the zina they had committed.

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      • siraaj

        But you did say the following:

        “One isn’t devout in din and at the same time doing major sins and immoralities.”

        From the examples above, it’s clear that what you responded to Umm Reem was not correct.

        Siraaj

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      • Mahmud

        No, it is clear from the hadith I posted, that I am indeed correct. It’s even worse if the person is calling others to Islam.

        “You forget that even amongst the Sahabah, there were those who committed zina – not just one or two, but several of them. Al-Ghaamidiyyah and Maa’iz are only two examples; if you go through the ahadeeth, you will find references to more incidents of Companions who confessed to zina.”

        Something I don’t like in this. One, it’s highlighting the faults of the Sahaba RA. They were not infallible, but I don’t feel that any purpose is served here except that we learn how the Prophet sallahuaayhiwasalam behaved with them.

        Secondly, it’s not like we are taking them as role models in this…

        And I remember even reading the Prophet sallahualayhiwasalam warning about people who will have mountainous deeds on yawm al Qiyamah and those deeds will be destroyed. That’s because the people used to do many good deeds, but in private, they used to commit sins.

        If someone is doing such a crime that they will be dragging their intestines in Jahannam, then I don’t see how they are a devout Muslim/

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      • Siraaj

        LOL, it’s clear only to you then. The point is that if it is possible within the best generation that the best people who were devout in religion committed major sins, it doesn’t mean they are not otherwise devout. Would you go so far as to say those Companions were not devout then? If not, then as you state, learn the example of the Prophet (SAW) in dealing with religious people who are struggling with such issues.

        Btw, among the scholars who highlighted the flaws of the Companions was none other than Ibn Taymiyyah. It is because the Companions are human, and even they made mistakes in the presence of the Prophet (SAW) no less that it gives us hope to have faith in Allah’s Mercy when we ourselves struggle.

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      • Umm Reem

        Brother, what is important to know is that even the best of the people commit sins, some major and some minor, but they DO. And we are in no position to judge them.

        If someone is doing such a crime that they will be dragging their intestines in Jahannam, then I don’t see how they are a devout Muslim/

        this is a serious statement. And how do you know that Allah has not forgiven them? How do you know that their repentance was not more beloved to ALlah than the hatred of their sin?
        While we are calling them sinners and categorizing them in lower degrees than the “devout” Muslims, Allah, Al-Afw, might have already forgiven and erased their sin!

        Like the sahabiyah who committed zina and asked for her punishment, and while she received her punishment, the Prophet sallallahu alibi wasalm informed the sahabi who was disgusted by her that her repentance was equivalent to more than SEVENTY repentance of the people of madinah!
        I wonder if she will be dragging her intestines in hellfire or enjoying the fruits of jannah!

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      • Mahmud

        No, it is clear to whoever is guided inshaa Allah.

        I’m not going to fall for the red herring. We were commanded to fear Allah aza wa jal concerning the Sahaba.

        There is benefit in learning how the Prophet sallahualayhiwasalam dealt with major sinners, and I have never denied that.

        And I stick to my contention, one is not devout and at the same time committing these sins. The hadith demonstrate this quite well.

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      • Siraaj

        And we are, but you just called the sahabah major sinners. Maybe what you’ve missed is there is another interpretation – that they are not devout during the time of the sin, not afterwards.

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      • Mahmud

        “but you just called the sahabah major sinners”

        No I didn’t, you are putting words in my mouth, may Allah forgive you.

        I am not interested in getting dragged into an argument with you. I’ve made my point, backed it with hadith and that suffices.

        “this is a serious statement. And how do you know that Allah has not forgiven them? How do you know that their repentance was not more beloved to ALlah than the hatred of their sin?
        While we are calling them sinners and categorizing them in lower degrees than the “devout” Muslims, Allah, Al-Afw, might have already forgiven and erased their sin!

        Like the sahabiyah who committed zina and asked for her punishment, and while she received her punishment, the Prophet sallallahu alibi wasalm informed the sahabi who was disgusted by her that her repentance was equivalent to more than SEVENTY repentance of the people of madinah!
        I wonder if she will be dragging her intestines in hellfire or enjoying the fruits of jannah!”

        Huh? Again, it seems like you are refuting things I never said and attributed that to me.

        I never said Allah did not forgive them. I simply refuted your contention that people are doing these sins and are at the same time, devout Muslims. Which doesn’t make any sense anyways, even without the hadith I quoted.

        I never alleged that the Sahabiyah was going to be dragging her intestines in Jahannam.

        Fear Allah. It is extremely clear in my comment I was referring to the callers to Islam who do not practice what they preach.

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      • kalam

        Why not address that majority of sisters don’t agree with polygamy and due to this some of these devout brothers have to resort to the addiction. I’m not saying every man should marry again but for sisters not acknowledging that to accept polygamy is part of deen is part of the problem.

        Have I opened a Pandora’s box?

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      • Fritz

        I dont think that sisters are rejecting polygamy as part of the deen.

        I think the real problem is appreciating that there is an obligation for both sides to help the other with intimacy within a marriage. When a sister is completely bomboozled as to why someone would look elsewhere despite “getting it so regularly” i.e. “once a week” is possibly part of the the problem. Of course, men have to help (address emotional needs etc) but the idea that every time should be preceded with a tasty meal, expensive gift etc is not grounded in reality.

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      • Aashiq Hussain

        First, Not a good idea to count Shabas who committed sins like this. Of course Allah is most forgiving. We should cover our fellow brother’s/sister’s faults and advice them in private. If they refrain good, and if they don’t then you should stay away from them. You don’t touch a burning person who has set himself on fire, you might get bunt too. You wanna throw water then pray for them. But then they too need to make efforts.

        Second, not to offend you but your name “Salafi Feminist” reminds me of those “Muslim” Feminists. What in the world does that mean, I wonder. Islam was/is about rights of both males and females. “Muslim” Feminists is like saying Islamic Secularism. And I personally believe Feminist movements have done more damage to women. Culture came and said, women are inferior to men. Islam came and says, Women are equal to men and should be treated as equals. Feminists came and they said, women are superior to men and men have rights over them.
        We now have a war of genders.

        No offense. I hope you get my point.

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    • Mahmud

      Here is the hadith I couldn’t previously remember.

      And neg rep me all you want, it will be something you have to account for.

      Thawban reported: The Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, said, “I will know people from my nation who will come on the Day of Resurrection with good deeds like the mountains, but Allah will scatter them like dust.” Thawban said, “O Messenger of Allah, describe them to us and tell us more, so that we will not unknowingly become like them.” He said, “They are your brothers and from your race, worshiping at night as you do, but they will be people who will transgress the sacred limits of Allah while they are alone.”

      [Sunan Ibn Majah, Book of Asceticism, Number 4245, Sahih]

      عَنْ ثَوْبَانَ عَنْ النَّبِيِّ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ أَنَّهُ قَالَ لَأَعْلَمَنَّ أَقْوَامًا مِنْ أُمَّتِي يَأْتُونَ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ بِحَسَنَاتٍ أَمْثَالِ جِبَالِ تِهَامَةَ بِيضًا فَيَجْعَلُهَا اللَّهُ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ هَبَاءً مَنْثُورًا قَالَ ثَوْبَانُ يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صِفْهُمْ لَنَا جَلِّهِمْ لَنَا أَنْ لَا نَكُونَ مِنْهُمْ وَنَحْنُ لَا نَعْلَمُ قَالَ أَمَا إِنَّهُمْ إِخْوَانُكُمْ وَمِنْ جِلْدَتِكُمْ وَيَأْخُذُونَ مِنْ اللَّيْلِ كَمَا تَأْخُذُونَ وَلَكِنَّهُمْ أَقْوَامٌ إِذَا خَلَوْا بِمَحَارِمِ اللَّهِ انْتَهَكُوهَا

      4245 سنن ابن ماجه كتاب الزهد باب ذكر الذنوب

      المحدث الألباني خلاصة حكم المحدث صحيح

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  2. Feeto

    Amazing article ! Insha’Allah works like these will contribute to better understand of the cause….Part 2 :P

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      • Aashiq Hussain

        @Feeto, Come back it has reached to 10 + 6.
        Those who “”Like” your comment would be your fans and those who “Disliked” it would be your Exhaust-Fans loool ^-^

        When you come back please “Like” my comment, I have deleted my FB account so have been two months since I got last “LIKE” :)

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  3. Wael Abdelgawad

    1. Jazaki Allah khayr for addressing this topic. It’s a deadly serious issue. Porn in particular is destroying lives, ruining marriages and corrupting millions of minds.

    2. I think we need to address the topic of porn with our children at the appropriate time and frame it just like drug use – it’s dangerous and addictive, and you should never even experiment with it.

    3. From my work at IslamicAnswers.com I know how common these problems are, and I don’t doubt what you’ve witnessed and heard. However, we cannot start doubting our daaiys and ‘ulemaa’ on the word of a prostitute. In Islam we assume the best about people and give them the benefit of the doubt.

    4. As far as zinaa, adultery, etc, I have a hard time believing it’s rampant among practicing Muslims. There are a lot of brothers who I think I know pretty well, and I believe they are good men. I myself have been divorced and chaste for a while now, and while it’s difficult it’s certainly doable. I’m not especially iron-willed – I’m a normal guy trying to practice my deen, Insha’Allah. There are a lot of good men out there and they should not be tarnished or suspected needlessly.

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    • Umm Reem

      Br. Wael,
      I agree with your pt. 1 & 2, but for #3, I am not referring to the prostitute who said that, it was a respected shaikh who brought this to my attention…
      and #4, you have to understand that it is usually wives who step forward and seek help, when they discover their husband’s other life. Usually those brothers who are involved in this, would RARELY ever make confessions. And even when their wives seek help, they don’t necessarily join their wives in counseling or therapy. That’s an issue we need to resolve…

      and this article is not meant to tarnish the image of good muslim brothers, who are inshaAllah abundant, but it is just to highlight the rising problem, and helping those who are suffering through this. InshaAllah the later series will help you better understand the intentions behind writing this…

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      • Servant of Allah

        Asalamo alaykum Umm Reem. Jazaki Allah khair for writing about this sensitive issue. A relevant issue that also needs to be addressed and is a growing problem in our community are wives that discover their husbands are bi/homosexuals. And this includes “good muslim brothers” that are hafidth al Quran, are active in the masjid and muslim community, and perform hajj/ummrah on a yearly basis. May Allah guide us and protect us from these fitan.

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      • Umm Reem

        wa alaikum assalam, wa ajma’een…

        Hmm…I know the problem exists but I’ve personally never dealt with a situation like that.
        I’ve dealt with many lesbians but not gays…but inshaAllah I will find someone to write about this :)

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      • whatever

        Assalaamu Alaykum Umm Reem,
        are you in the Middle East, if so is it possible for me to get personal counseling from you? are you available online via Skype or email? When I was back in America, I had such a hard time finding counseling, there were hardly any local imams willing to do counseling and I was always referred to a female muslim professional therapist, which I did not think was necessary, I am talking about marriage and spiritual counseling.

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      • Servant of Allah

        Please feel free to contact me and I will share my story with you.

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      • Aashiq Hussain

        And shockingly or not-shockingly you have Immams who do nikah, in Mosques, of these homosexuals.

        But then they say, it is the genetic trait that makes them attractive to same gender. But then Allah says It is wrong. Allah doesn’t hard-wire sins.

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  4. shaf

    It is a huge problem for men. Women in the Muslim families should kick the shaytan TV in first hand to prevent their kids from falling prey to this evil. The TV to me is like an intoxicant and there are some good but the evil outweighs good we can get from it. Also, do not give mobile phones and this is more truer with regards to girls. Finally, please do arrange marriage for the kids once after school. Help them to safeguard their imaan while in college. Some would say these are the modern times and my suggestions are impractical to be upheld, then accept the fact that the problem of zina will not go away except such severe measures.

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    • Abez

      TV-free for 13 years, and cannot imagine raising my children one way but entertaining them in another. Thumbs up to everything except for cellphones- a cheap Nokia (black & white, indestructible, with Snake II) can allow them to communicate w/out presenting too much of a problem, InshaAllah. :)

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      • Hyde

        Through SHY and reading such as Neil Postman, I have come to the same conclusion; TV free for almost two years. But the issue is the incorporation of technology at large.

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    • Habib

      Its true that TV can skew the minds of children,

      But problems like homosexuality, rape and adultery have existed since loooong ago, before there was any TV

      :)

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  5. Abu Hamzah

    Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

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    • Mona

      I just posted this to another brother who had the same misconception as you do: I believe it has very little to do with a man being satisfied sexually by his wife, and there is lots of proof to back this. Recently, there was this marriage counselor who wrote about why men cheat, and 92% said it wasn’t about the sex: http://www.oprah.com/relationships/Why-Men-Cheat_2/2

      Also, when a man is getting satisfied by outside means…he is the one not fulfilling his wife’s desires, and leaving his wife without any physical intimacy.

      Lastly, if a man is not pleased with his wife, he can divorce her. Cheating on her in any way, especially, by potentially giving her a life threatening disease by going to strangers and prostitutes, then that man deserves the punishment of death as Allah decreed for the believers who do this while married.

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    • Aashiq Hussain

      Just because you are not satisfied with your spouse doesn’t mean you go door to door to test who satisfies you best.
      How did these people stay off from porn before marriage? You need to fear Allah not wife. Allah sees you even if your wife doesn’t.
      You can and I think you must talk to your wife about you not being satisfied. Imagine if she gave same excuse and cheated on you. you would probably beat her or divorce her or would never forgive her.
      Quran has no condition when saying protect your private parts.

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  6. broAhmed

    Glad MM discusses these issues. It’s sadly a very common issue these days; with the internet, in a few keystrokes you can be reading Qur’an or viewing pornography.

    I had a little bit more to say about this topic, but the spam filter seems to be blocking it. Here’s the rest of the post: http://pastebin.com/7b0vJ8VV

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  7. tarannum

    ASA Umm Reem,
    Thank you so much for opening my eyes to this “new” problem. We somehow only think of the 1st part of the hadith(the tongue) and not the second. Actually, in one of the Shaykhs lectures he was mentioning how this is not only a problem among the men but also women(although to a lesser degree). May Allah protect our Ummah. Ameen.
    JAK for giving a solution as well.

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    • Umm Reem

      You’re very welcome :)

      Yes it is a problem amongst women too, and I will bring it up in the series later inshaAllah

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  8. Arooj

    Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

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    • Aashiq Hussain

      Just because you are not satisfied with your spouse doesn’t mean you go door to door to test who satisfies you best.
      How did these people stay off from porn before marriage? You need to fear Allah not wife. Allah sees you even if your wife doesn’t.
      You can and I think you must talk to your wife about you not being satisfied. Imagine if she gave same excuse and cheated on you. you would probably beat her or divorce her or would never forgive her.
      Quran has no condition when saying protect your private parts.

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  9. Paramgeet

    Excellent post. Our remedy is in the Quran and Sunnah. We have to realize and understand what “lowering the gaze” actually entails. It means much more than merely looking at the floor in the presence of non-mahram women. Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah (may Allaah have mercy on him) said in Majmoo’ al-Fataawa (15/414):
    “Allaah, may He be glorified and exalted, has enjoined us in His Book to lower the gaze, which is of two types: refraining from looking at ‘awrahs and refraining from looking at the site of desire.”
    Except those who repent and believe (in Islâmic Monotheism), and do righteous deeds, for those, Allâh will change their sins into good deeds, and Allâh is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.”

    Furthermore, if a man happens to look (intentionally or unintentionally) and is enticed by a woman Islam tells us how to control our deires, by fasting (unmarried males) and going to our wives (married males).

    “O young men, those among you who can support a wife should marry, for it restrains eyes (from casting evil glances) and preserves one from immorality; but he who cannot afford it should observe fast, for it is a means of controlling the sexual desire. ” (Muslim)

    The Prophet sallallahu alayhi wasallam UNINTENTTIONALLY looked at a woman and was aroused. He went home and had intercourse with Zainab (one of his pretty wives). He said, “Woman faces you as Devil. If you are affected by her charm, have intercourse with your wife because she has the same thing as the woman who affected you.” (Tirmzi)

    Islam has the answer.

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  10. Faiza M D

    As Salam Alaikum
    Your article has left me shaking! This is shocking! I’d read many times that this disease has spread among our Ummah, but never realized the extent of it. Lived in an Islamic environment up to now, but will be moving soon to a-not-so-Islamic place (post marriage). And am just so scared to even think of what kind of people I’ll meet, what situations I’ll be in..so difficult for me- a young girl- to imagine all these things….Aameen to your dua…I also make dua that Allah protect me, my fiance and all of our Muslim brothers and sisters from this extremely tempting sin. O Allah! strengthen our emaan, keep us firm on Your right path and guide those who have fallen into error. Aameen

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    • Hafiz Gee

      @Faizia MD

      Unless the country you live in has some really good internet blocking (most of which can probably be bypassed in any case, but which will still make accessing haram material a bit more difficult) there really is no reason to feel secure in the Islamic world.

      While women do not walk around uncovered quite as much, Muslims in these countries are watching the same TV shows, movies, and internet and have the same desires. It is the duty of parents to make accessing haram content as difficult as possible. It’s better to be a Nazi parent than to have your children involved in these activities. And no I’m not advocating Nazi parenting.

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      • Faiza M D

        Well, I live in KSA and yes, a good amount of things are blocked here.
        I have strict parents -no, not the Nazi kind-of- who keep TV out of the house, give internet access only at the age of 15 and give sound advice before each I do anything new in my life. Instead of TV, music and play stations, we have a small library with books on all topics of Islam.(And reading books made me get the real spirit of the religion)
        The parents are supposed to teach their kids what is right, in a way that enters their hearts and they accept it from their hearts. Not just lecture and put restrictions so that the kid pretends to be a sweetheart for parents and is a devil behind their backs. Kids should be made to understand why are certain things inappropriate and what is the reason to avoid them. Just making access to haram content might not be the best option.(They get it from friends otherwise) Instilling Eman and Taqwa will help control nafs and keep oneself pure and chaste.(My humble opinion…might not be so strong, I’ve no experience :p but that’s what I feel…)

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  11. NerdCrunch

    You have discussed a very important issue among Muslims. I hope more and more Muslims read this article and understand the gravity of the situation.

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  12. :(

    Human beings are not biologically capable of resisting the mass, sexual super-stimulus… plain and simple… So long as there’s access, it’s not going to stop… If insha Allah if I am ever able to have a son… He will not lay fingers on an internet device without being with a responsible person… That is what I wish happened with me

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    • Bambi

      Hi everyone! I am an unlegit massage therapist that is turning to Islam soon. God save me :) I have made a lot of sins.
      Well, let me just say that I have seen a lot of clients, most are NOT Muslim. For an escort to say that she has witnessed client’s praying, that is just an outright lie. You can not trust hookers. She was probably trying to make the author of this article mad. Most escorts are liars with addictions and can not stand any type of pious woman perid. Regarding clientèle, there are a lot of Indians, a few Muslims, Jews etc. Not a huge problem in the Muslim community in my opinion. What ever the religion someone belongs to, people are people and that is the end of it. For ANY women, not just Muslim, cheating is a concern. Men are more carnal creatures, thus the cheating happens sometimes. Who are we to judge. If my husband cheated on me, it is a sad thing, but not something horrible to me. Upsetting yes. We are all not perfect. While porn is not something positive, I have had Indian clients ask me how to please a woman, I tell them to just watch videos and learn from that. I don’t know! I am not perfect either. Porn can be something to raise desire in a dull yet stable relationship. I have no idea what the Koran says about it, but I will look. I do know that there is a balance in this world, a perfect one, that we are all apart of. So therefore good and bad are a part of that balance. The internet has its ups and downs as far as what can be watched or learned from, etc. I personally do not care for porn, but I am also not a man. One of my close friends is a porn star and I also know many escorts. They are torn up people, so by not patronizing them, it might be beneficial to the entire community. Hope this helps :) Also let me add that I am married to a wonderful Arab man and love the religion of Islam and can’t wait to do my shahaddah. I love how it makes women feel like they are doing the right thing.

      Have a great day everyone!

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  13. Achakzai

    To be continued????? wht does it mean where can i read the remaining part????

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  14. Ahmed

    one persons anecdote is not a complete analysis. However, it is obvious that what happens in the society one lives in affects all communities in it. The values and concepts that created and guide that society, through education, tv, media, internet naturally will affect members of that society.
    That is why Islam came as a complete and integrated way of life, to be practised under the concepts and values implemented by the Islamic State. In that State, the internet would not contain such material to stroke peoples desires in the haram ways. In Islam the solution to such desires is halal marriage, and the respect of women as human beings, not sex objects. Therefore Allah (swt) made the Islamic State an obligation, so that his way of living could be realised in practice

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  15. Siraaj

    Good article, and an important topic to discuss.

    I think part of what will change our attitude is realizing even the religious types will have glaring imperfections of character and practice that remains hidden to the outside world. Even in the best generation, that of the Companions, we see individuals committing major sins while contemporaries of the Prophet (SAW). We’re kidding ourselves if we think we can’t fall into such problems because we “know our limits”.

    Key for a lot of this I think is getting past the shock and tabloid factor quickly and moving to the “how do I help my brothers and sisters who fall into this?” part of the discussion. I suspect a good number of people in this want nothing to do with it yet perceive themselves as trapped by their nafs.

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  16. Abu Polygny

    Yep. This is a rampant problem. Some of us could not get out of it and kept on slipping with our best efforts and intentions. Tears in front of our Creator begging for help day after day while succumbing to the call of the cursed devil. The courses offered by the likes of Ziyad Ramadan can unaffordable so we referred to the High and Mighty to cure this filthy disease and He responded with the call of making polygny halaal for us in a nation where it is considered haraam. That was our solution. Alhamdulilah ala kuli haal. He responded and made everything easy. If a man is sincere about rectifying his disease, He will look into many options.

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  17. RCHOUDH

    That conversation with your son reminds me of the one that I had with

    my daughter (aged 11) where she asked me why some girls dress

    inappropriately to attract boys’ attention. She naturally found such

    behavior reprehensible too. I had to explain to her that unfortunately

    girls are made to feel by society at large that getting such attention

    will make them feel good about themselves, which is completely

    deceptive.

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    • RCHOUDH

      Nowadays we have to work very hard to teach young girls that their

      worth does not lie in being treated like a sex object, and we have to

      teach young boys not to treat women as sex objects, even if they

      themselves act that way. We also have to realize that as long as we

      live in societies where such corrupting influences are widespread, we

      will have the same problems and issues affecting the greater society

      affect us too. And btw Muslim societies are obviously not immune to

      such influences too nowadays, thanks to the pervasiveness of global

      media, both Western and non-Western. Porn is extremely prevalent

      nowadays because of both global media and because of this notion that

      it is form of “protected free speech”.

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      • RCHOUDH

        Defenders of porn also use the

        reasoning that porn should not be scapegoated for the prevalence of

        rapes/sexual harassment in the world today, in other words, “rape

        culture”. They even claim that porn can serve as a “harmless” outlet

        for pent-up sexual energy whenever a man (or woman) doesn’t have a

        partner to have sex with. As Muslims, we should never fall for such

        defensive claims because we are supposed to uphold the highest ideals

        of good.

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      • RCHOUDH

        As Muslims we should be aware of how porn is extremely degrading to women and that while the majority of men may not go out and rape women, those that do are susceptible to influence from porn. For example many pedophiles have been found to be in possession of child porn.

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      • RCHOUDH

        As for the notion that porn serves as a harmless outlet for
        pent-up sexual energy, as Muslims we know that the only halal outlets are through marriage and fasting. Finally it’s been found that many young men nowadays do try to get “tips” for sex using porn, which results in their partners either feeling degraded or sexually unfulfilled. BTW I apologize for having to break up comment, MM didn’t initally accept it as one!

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  18. A Conversation With a Hooker: Adultery, Sex Add...

    [...] A Conversation With a Hooker: Adultery, Sex Addiction and Muslims MuslimMatters How unfortunate of a reality check; I was exposed to several cases of devout Muslims suffering through porn addiction, which inevitably led to sexual exploration beyond…  [...]

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  19. Abez

    “What about my son? Am I doing enough to protect him? What can I do to make sure he doesn’t fall prey to this corruption?…”

    Believe it or not, this is one of the reasons why I’m happy my son has autism. He’s been automatically protected from a bottomless chasm of sin due to his inability to even understand it. Yes, we have a life-long challenge to work with, but I think the trade-off is worth it for a better shot at Jannah, InshaAllah.

    May Allah protect all of our sons.

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    • Hyde

      Oh dear sister, I know you meant well, but it is “pretty” bad for you to state that you are so glad that your little boy has autism so he won’t do sinning. One can easily take it say “I’m glad that I have no children so they won’t do haram”. Very slippery path…

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      • Abez

        AssalamuAlaikum Brother- I appreciate your concern, but I believe that thanking Allah and seeing the good in every situation is part of trusting Allah and making your heart content with His plan for you.

        There’s a lesson from the encounter of Prophet Musa with Khidr, peace be upon them, where Prophet Musa travels with him and is shocked to see Khidr- a man of Allah- sabotaging a boat, killing a child, and then building a wall in a town where they were treated uncharitable. When Musa loses patience, Khidr finally explains the purpose behind his actions. In the Yasir Qadhi lecture, the explanation starts here.

        http://youtu.be/MPan2hCwLa8?t=15m54s

        The point of me mentioning this is that even “bad” things that Allah has willed are done for good reasons, and there is no danger in seeking the good in every situation and being grateful to Allah no matter what.

        If you are poor, you won’t be questioned about wasting wealth- so thank Allah.

        If you are blind, you can thank Allah for saving you from the visual fitnah of the world’s eye-candy.

        If you have no power, you will never oppress anyone.

        If a person has no children, they can thank Allah and look for the good in the situation, and if that good means they will not be accountable for raising their children badly- Alhamdulillah. :)

        If I have a son with autism, I can thank Allah for saving him from the trials of this world that other young men have to deal with, and I’m relieved that he can enter Jannah through the door of innocence. At the end of the day, nothing in the world matters as much as whether he gets to Jannah, and as long as he gets there, I don’t care which door he enters from.

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      • Hyde

        Oh I beg your pardon, now that you put it this way, it makes sense. I probably won’t be there to greet you, but may you and little boy see the fruits of Jannah.

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      • Abez

        Ameen, but I pray we get to have this conversation in Jannah and as long as you’re trying to get there, there’s nothing stopping you from success, InshaAllah. :)

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      • Warrior

        Wow. Masha Allah. Amazing attitude. May Allah bless you and your family.

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  20. ZAI

    Excellent article.
    I agree with it all and further I have no reason to doubt the hooker. I believe every
    word she said as well.

    To the folks who are having trouble believing in how rampant this is or
    that the dichotomy of “practicing” Muslims and porn/prostitution can go together…
    rest assured it is happening.

    These “practicing” brothers are OUTWARDLY practicing…you have NO idea
    of their inward reality. Only God knows the heart, whether good or bad…and plenty
    of our brothers are dealing with these issues and caught up in these sins.

    I’m an emergency room physician and I treat MANY Muslim teens and adults
    for stds. It is a reality. Does NO good to pretend it’s not going on or that
    Muslims are somehow immune from these social ills.

    Simply looking at Google statistics, we Muslims have the embarrassing distinction
    of the highest number of porn searches in the world. Egypt, Pakistan, UAE are regularly at
    the top of the list.

    I think it terms of examing both causes and solutions though, that we should not be reductive and
    simplify things too much or think there is one solution for everybody. Everybody is different and
    there are different reasons they may be engaging in these sins and they need different remedies
    to bring them out of it.

    For instance, as far as single brothers go…they are turning to these things undoubtedly because
    they are sexually frustrated. They are having an extremely hard time waiting until they are 24, 25, or 26 years old and have a “good” job before anyone will ever consider them for marriage. So they turn to porn or to prostitutes where they don’t have to deal with all the relationship baggage they would encounter simply seeking out non-Muslims to “date”. It’s one and done…an easy way for them to deal with their sexual desires in a discreet fashion.

    Look forward to reading the rest of the series.

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  21. Abu Asiyah

    I think it’s important to point out that research after research has shown that pornography is an addiction very similar in its chemical make-up to that of recreational drugs. I.e., the brothers and sisters affected by this sin are addicted to the point that they cannot stop even if it’s ruining their lives.

    However, the problem lies in that if a brother has a drug problem, he has a higher chance of finding his spouse and his family accepting and willing to help him with that. However, if a brother has a pornography problem, he is risking destroying his entire family by revealing that he has this problem. His spouse would take years to recover from the shock – or even worse, demand divorce. So the challenge is to be able to help these brothers and sisters, but discreetly.

    I have heard that Imam Ghazali’s works on restraining the nafs are extremely helpful for this situation. Since many of them are available online or are fairly cheap to buy, to the brothers & sisters struggling with this problem, this may be a good first step insha’Allah.

    May Allah help all the Muslims and protect us from fawaahish, ameen!

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    • Umm Reem

      Abu Asiyah,
      I agree with you that this should be looked at as a disease…however, it really depends how a husband approaches his wife and how he brings up this issue with her. AND if the marriage is very strong in other areas…

      And pronography might be easier to deal with but when a man sees prostitutes, whether for sex or for other stuff, then it takes a VERY strong woman to handle this problem, and there has to be some mighty effort from the husband to recover from his issue…

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      • Abu Asiyah

        Umm Reem,

        That is true, of course.I was mostly talking about the issues with pornography – prostitutes are a whole other level of betrayal. From my own perspective as a husband, the latter would be difficult to forgive or deal with.

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      • omer

        Seeing prostitutes for sex in Islam is Major Sin.. in the Shariah (what I know of the Shariah) that its a Major Crime punished with Death….. Let alone talk of “forgiveness” from wife.. if a man(or women) cheats thats it.. there is no “forgiveness”// divorce right away!!!!

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      • Scattered Pearls

        I’m not sure that’s true. If you feel that your spouse has been unfaithful, you can do lian to divorce them, but you don’t have to. Thus the hadith about the wife who commits adultery and has a child, the husband becomes the father, and the adulturer (biological father) gets nothing. The husband can still do lian to divorce his wife and not take the child, but the hadith seems to make it permissible for him not to.

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  22. Abdullah

    I dont know what or how to respond to this article, I suffer from this problem and alhumdolillah i am not addicted but i slip more than often astagfarullah. There is a constant struggle between practising (reason i say practice is because my faith has never faultered) Islam and fahashi. I blame my reason on a stubborn racist Arab man , who denies to accept my marriage to his daughter, because i am not from gulf (I grew up in west but am of Pakistani background). I married her but we are apart from 6 years. We married , while she was studying in United States at an age of 26, on her request i did not complete my marriage. Before that and for a year after that , i never watched porn and did not have any sexual experience. A year after that i faultered for the first time, when i started watching porn and this led me to dating websites for casual relationships. Since then i have cried, repented and fallen into the trap again. Allah has been very kind to me as my social status, faith, wealth and health has all increased 1000 folds during this time but every time i fail, it kills me a little bit from inside. One such lady i met , who was after a casual relationship, reverted to Islam after few weeks of casual relationship and we both pulled back as i cannot marry anyone else because i love my wife (please arabs dont ask me to marry someone else coz that makes me angry).

    Two worse things i suffer from because of this is 1) Racism – i hate arab supremacy and 2) Control over my nafs. Even while writing this i am going through a sea of strong emotions and hate towards every arab who reads this. Growing up , i always believed that all Muslims have a strong concept of Ummah and nationalism was secondary, but these notions have not only been challenged but shattered for me. I honestly am not afraid as much about my racism as i am of the weakness of nafs , which is gripping me. Since, you have mentioned this topic, my one humble request to you is to write on why muslims should make marriage easy or as Prophet (PBUH) said there will be fitnah.

    There may be 100 more reasons of pious Muslims breaking down but one of the main one is because Marriage has been made real hard for Muslims by Muslims. I do not know what will become of me or my marriage , at an age of 32, i am suffering because of this and i only pray that ALLAH gives me sabr and forgives me.

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    • Warrior

      Wow. I feel for you brother. I’m Pakistani myself and it’s very very unfortunate that this is occurring within our Ummah. Hang in there brother. Don’t give up. But bro you have to stop seeing other women man. You gotta pull yourself to leave it. A relative of mine died of AIDS and I saw him throughout his illness which lasted for years. Allah SWT is All-Merciful but when his punishment arrives, nothing can stand in the way brother. Do not feel secure by your increase in worldly matters. Allah SWT is delaying the punishment and giving you time brother. Do not wait for the punishment to arrive brother. I am in the same boat as well man. I want to marry a girl but do not have the means to do it right now. This is a reminder to me first and then to you. I do not want to be a hypocrite. May Allah forgive us and solve our issues. Ameen.

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      • Sister pakistani

        To brother Abdullah: The arabs in the US or Western countries are eons different than the ones back home….if brother Abdullaah realizes this then may Allaah heal his heart and move and let go…and this is not coming from an arab but from a Pakistani. There use to be a tme n my life where I only wanted to marry an arab knowing rudimentary the Arabic language, culture, lifestyleand was exposed to it back in the US of A but now when someone mistakes me for an arab, I proudly say I am sorry I am not an arab, I am a paksitani American. There are good and bad people everywhere and I am not saying there are not good things among arabs but let us not overrate a people because we are deluded to think that they represent or are connected to our dear Prophet SAW more than us…similarly I hate nationalism and ethnocentricity but a lot of desis do not appreciate the good things in their culture which is humbleness and akhlaaq. and last but not least one of the reasons why men or anybody for that matter might fall into any sort of sin be it prostitution or pornography is shirk al khafi or the inconspicuous shirk(the state of being where we are displeased with the qadhaa of Allaah SWT). Brother Abdullah I don’t know your situation and I suggest you speak with a knowledgeable speaker or rightoues imam in yrou locality but if you are having roadblocks to marriage to a particular person accept is as qadhaa and move one. Probably one of the most difficult pillars of faith is the belief in divine pre-ordainment.

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    • Aadam

      i completely agree with you, i have been to same situation. i was just rejected by the family even without meeting me just because i wasn’t Arab, even i am born Muslim and everything usually they look for their daughter but Arab Supremacy didn’t let it happen and eventually we took different directions.

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      • ZAI

        Brothers,
        I hope we are keeping in mind that this is a MUSLIM or even a HUMAN problem and not simply one among Arabs. Yes, there are Arabs who are racist and have supremacist attitudes within the Ummah…but plenty of non-Arabs within the ummah are racist too. I mean is “Pakistani” even an ethnicity? Aren’t Punjabis, Pashtuns, Sindhis and Baluchis at each others throats or denying intermarriage in many cases? Would Pakistanis all eagerly marry their daughters to a black man or a Bangladeshi?

        I KNOW there is racism among my Afghans. Heck, infact among Iranic ethnic groups like Persians, Pashtuns, Baluchis and Kurds we have a lot of racism directed AT ARABS. Insults like “bedouin”, “camel” or “lizard-eater” are commonplace. Same among Turkic groups.

        It’s ALL wrong and it’s an ummah-wide problem, so all I’m saying is I hope we
        are keeping this in mind and not condemning Arabs on our high-horses.

        Br. Abdullah,
        I feel for you bro…and I’m not going to tell you what to do.
        But because I went through it as well, I will just tell you what I did.
        I also wanted to marry an Arab girl who was my lab-partner in college, and she was willing. The family said no and made clear it was because I wasn’t Arab.
        At that point I looked at it logically and just asked myself a few questions:

        1.) If the family has caused all this drama, why would I even want to be a part of that family?
        2.) How healthy can the marriage be, if it STARTS with her family being against me?
        3.) How will this dynamic affect any children?
        4.) How will this affect HER mentally and emotionally going through life
        in a constant tug-of-war between her husband and family, constantly being asked or pressured to take sides?
        5.) How will this affect my own parents and family who will have to keep relations with these people they know don’t like their son?

        Eventually for me, I decided that the negatives outweighed the positives and I decided to abandon going forward even though the girl was actually willing to fight for it and go against her fathers wishes. I appreciated her sentiment, but I thought these things must be thought out logically and not saturated with emotions. Now, I’m not telling you to ask the same questions I did or make the same decision…but I DO think it’s time for you to start asking yourself and your wife some logical and practical questions, leaving aside emotion to the best of your ability.

        As to your fears of racism and your nafs, brother hatred only destroys the hater.
        The man who hurt you does NOT care. He is happily driving his Range Rover around in the dunes and could care less that you hate him, hate Arabs or are hurting, so why are you hurting YOURSELF investing so much energy into hating this man? It is a poison making both your dunya miserable and putting your akhirah at risk. Let it go. Reach out to Umm Reem, Siraj or anyone else who can put you in touch with a counselor if you need the help…and when you feel you are emotionally able, you and your wife need to have a serious practical discussion about what you both think the next step is. 6 years of this is too much…don’t waste another 6.

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  23. Harun

    Assalamu alaykum
    I think one of the main pointers to guarding our humanfolk is to try and ensure nothing unsavoury hits the eyes or ears. Even the most borderline content on the television or billboards should be shunned immediately – thus ensuring such content doesn’t reach the heart (or worse still, become embossed). Also, the Internet is becoming sadly, a portal of evil to spread. Put those filters on and keep them secure!

    The suggestion of “dua” is the best answer to this whole issue. When one remembers that Allah (SWA) is indeed near and All-Aware of our predicaments and problems, then all else becomes secondary and patience is allowed to sprout. InshaAllah, May the Lord of the worlds protect His creation from the evil of themselves and the evil around them. Ameen.

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    • Sara

      Maybe we should all stay at home and never leave the house or have any contact with the outside world and then we will be ‘safe’. The problems that arise within ourselves and our community arise from within, not without. We need to examine the Muslim community and discover what is leading to this trend, perhaps its the general moral indignation that so many Muslims are so quick to use and the fact that we are so quick to judge one another. Problems are not discussed or addressed, they are swept under the carpet. Men and women talked openly with the prophet (pbuh), why are modern Muslims so often shocked by our human failings? It is a very strong and basic drive. Perhaps if husbands and wives could talk ab out these things openly without disgust getting in the way we could find solutions more easily. Sex is not disgusting if it is done with love and respect, it is a gift from Allah.

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  24. Abuafaaf

    Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

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    • TCM

      You think someone addicted to porn just needs more wives? It originates in a lack of modesty and a desire to see acts that decent women wouldnt do. Thus you could have 4 or 40 wives and that would not solve the porn addiction.

      I think it’s funny that men’s solution to everything is polygamy. Why stop there? If 4w ives can’t satisfy him maybe we should go back to malakat aykmanukum (sex slaves). Hey, it is in the Quran…..

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      • Gibran

        Assalamualaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh

        “malakat aymanuhum”
        That is not sex slaves, yes they are captives of war and Allah allowed their masters to have sex with them however that’s not the equivalent of a sex slave.

        Also, what are you going to do about the fact that not everyone can do polygamy? There are 105 boys born to every hundred girls so there are already more boys than girls. If one man has more than one wife simply for sexual release, than another, probably poorer man is forced to live celibate and restrain himself from all these temptations.

        The solution to this problem is, and always has been, in the Quran and Sunnah. I never read that polygamy is the solution to these sins.

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      • Gibran

        I tried to post the embed link but it did not work.

        Here is the link:

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0PiMaDmp6M4

        Very good YouTube video Alhamdulilah. Not much is taught about this subject as it should be. Imagine how much more chaste men would be if they had this. In turn, society would demand less from women……and excellent cycle.

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      • ZAI

        “Also, what are you going to do about the fact that not everyone can do polygamy? There are 105 boys born to every hundred girls so there are already more boys than girls. If one man has more than one wife simply for sexual release, than another, probably poorer man is forced to live celibate and restrain himself from all these temptations.

        The solution to this problem is, and always has been, in the Quran and Sunnah. I never read that polygamy is the solution to these sins.”

        EXCELLENT point brother.
        There are simply not enough women for every man to have a 2nd wife..let alone a 3rd or 4th. Furthermore, marriage is about more than satisfying lust and to see it within that vaccum will hardly produce healthy marriages or a healthy holistic view of women and their worth among Muslim men. They are not simply an avenue to satisfy our lust.

        The allowance is there in our deen, but it’s not a solution for everyone.
        Infact, for those of us in non-Muslim lands it is illegal, so not an option.

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      • Umm Reem

        TCM,

        I agree with you that the solution to this problem is not multiple wives…
        but I have a problem with this statement:

        It originates in a lack of modesty and a desire to see acts that decent women wouldnt do.

        When a wife is being intimate with her husband, she really needs to put all her modesty aside and explore and experiment everything, without being shy, within “halal” bounds. Decency can stay outside the bedroom, as long as nothing haram is involved…

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  25. Hassan

    Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

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    • Umm Reem

      I think if I teach my son the correct perspective of sex and sexual desires, if I keep a VERY OPEN communication with him, if I teach him not to objectify women, If I warn him against the traps of shaytaan about the “excitement of secrecy”, “excitement of affairs” etc. and above all make du’a for him and teach him to make du’a, inshaAllah it should help.

      And no I wont’ dismiss polygamy if you can guarantee me that it helps. BEcause in my findings, it doesn’t. Those men who are in this is because of the way they were exposed to sex, or those who grew up objectifying women, no matter how many women they marry, their problem will not be solved…

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      • Warrior

        Do you have a husband sister? Maybe it would be better for a male, father figure, or someone who can be an older brother to him to take on this responsibility rather than you. I think that would be much more effective, because they will be able to directly relate with your son as they are both males and can communicate and understand each other much more thoroughly and can relate to each other. You being a woman, your son may feel that you do not fully comprehend or understand his situation as much as a male would. However, I fully support your efforts and think it is a great initiative and you are definitely on the right track, but I think a male to support your efforts will be of much greater benefit, inshaAllah.

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      • Umm Reem

        Br. Warrior,

        JazakAllah khair but I would rather do my job myself rather than relying on others for it.

        Alhamdulliah my husband helps whenever I need his help and although my son is close to his father, he feels a lot more comfortable in discussing such issues with me :)

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      • Brother

        Your son’s so lucky Masha’Allah…

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      • Umm Ali

        To all those who think polygamy is the solution, let me tell you it is not always. I had told my husband that he is free to take a second wife if he wants just so that he doesn’t fall into illicit relationships. I knew this is what Allah would want from me. But my husband went behind my back and by the time I found out, he was in such a mess that I could do nothing about it. He had multiple partners, he was a porn addict and increasingly became an abuser. He choose his own path.

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  26. Humaira Khan

    I’m just wondering what advice and/or support we can offer to the women who come to us with such complaints about their spouse. Some women want to leave their husbands but stay because of the kids yet they remain disgusted with their husbands and find they cannot carry on a meaningful relationship with their husband any more.

    Often, Imams don’t help the situation much either. They either do not have the training to deal with these things or find that their “maleness” (is that a word??) is a handicap (i.e. they don’t understand the female perspective well.) I know of some instances where women have sought the imam’s help regarding some marital issue or other and have been sent home with blanket statements like, “Just put up with it”! In my opinion that is just irresponsible. In my humble opinion, the most important thing to do in such cases is to keep the communication lines open between the person who has sought help and the imam just so that all-important support can be offered to that person on a long-term basis.

    One particular lady who called me for advice regarding this specific problem that you have talked about here, complained that the Friday khutbah is often a wasted opportunity. She said that Friday prayers are sometimes the only religious activity for most Muslim men and she felt that was the place to address issues like rights of women/wives, etc instead of harping over the same topics over and over again.

    I agree with her. We spoke with the local imam asking him to address these issues (in a general way without making it PG 13+) but he refused saying, “If anybody has a problem, they can come to me”.

    Also, I know of at least one case where a divorce occurred because the lady in question was “very rigid” in terms of intimacy. She had had a strict upbringing which probably contributed to the issue. Parents of daughters tend to forget that these days people’s sons are exposed to all kinds of things on TV, at school, at work, on the freeway (billboards, etc) even if they are not indulging directly in anything that’s forbidden. It changes their expectations for what they want in their wives. It’s not something that happens by design, it just happens because of the society we all live in. These are things we need to talk to our daughters about.

    I hope you will be addressing at least some of these issues in the remaining parts of this series.

    Jazak Allah khair

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    • Umm Reem

      Humaira,

      Yes I will be covering each of these issues you mentioned.
      “Emotionally Torn Wives”
      “Untraited Imams”
      “Divorce or Stay”

      but before these, there will be at least 2 articles on Men’s Sexuality and the main reasons why a man falls prey to this addiction…
      My goal is to publish each part 2 weeks apart but it will be ramadan so I might delay it until after Ramadan inshaAllah.

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      • Anon

        Sister, perhaps publishing it during Ramadan would be beneficial for those who struggle with this problem, as they may use the blessed month to remove themselves from the practice of this sin. Just a suggestion inshaAllah :)

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      • Omar

        Dear Sister Umm Reem, thank you very much for addressing this issue.

        In my work I have dealt with many addicts and some of them have been Muslims addicted to drinking, drugs, gambling and sex/pornography too (though Muslims are a tiny minority of the addict population). I hope that when you write about the root causes of this addiction you will not focus on just external causes – like the temptation caused by the society we live in or the ease of access of porn.

        In my experience, the problem starts internally at a young age. Most of the Muslim and non-Muslim men I have known who have addictions also have childhood traumas which create an emotional wound that addictions later medicate. And after years of repeatedly medicating themselves they lose the power of choice over it and sin takes over their lives.

        Muslims come from shame-based cultures where talking honestly about one’s family issues and one’s own feelings is very difficult. I think the Muslim porn addiction issue is not an isolated issue but rather a sub-issue of the larger mental and spiritual health problems we face partly as a result of the shame-based cultures we come from. From this perspective your article is really wonderful.

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    • Wallad Bin Logic

      You know, as a man, I wish I knew what to tell you about these men. Men are stupid. They dont try to have sensual meaningful sex most of the time and relationships become dry routines of duty and not so much about making the sex worth something more than baby making. If I could slap them for you, I would.

      Men need to be taught a lesson but theres always a risk of triggering irrational anger. They get defensive and Id hate to have to be in the position of a man who did that to his wife. If the woman is disgusted…what would fix it in their minds? Would it matter if they stopped? Women think they are obligated to give sex no matter what but is that fair? I dont know. I dont think so.

      Mentality is key. Appealing to why they dont want to have only their wives is a good place to start. See what they say and see what the mans mentality is. You usually cant help the moronically backwards men who take everything from back home and want only a submissive wife but for those who will listen…for those who want to make it right…you might be able to get somewhere.

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    • Warrior

      You know, sex is important but marriage isn’t all about finding a woman who will do all sorts of crazy things to please us men. Marriage is about finding the right woman who will benefit your Deen and Dunya. Does the woman who is ‘rigid’ deserve to be divorced just because her husband expected a sex toy to live out all of his fantasies with, but because she was chaste her whole life, she doesn’t understand that? I think that’s absurd. I don’t think girls need to be taught how to fulfill all sorts of sexual fantasies as part of their upbringing. That’s crazy. Sexual experimentation should be learned and practiced after marriage, when it is applicable. Both husband and wife need to compromise in a marriage and exert a lot of effort to find solutions to these things and make each other happy. I think it’s very, very disappointing that our Muslim sisters are now being divorced because they weren’t trained to be porn stars in the bedroom with their husbands.

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      • Nida

        You took the words right out of my mouth before I could type them, jazakallah khayr.

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      • Warrior

        Wa iyakum. Our sisters and daughters shouldn’t be competing with porn stars, strippers, and prostitutes. Rather, they should be looking at the Sahaabiyaat as their role models. To all sisters, if your husband is unsatisfied with you because you can’t do what his favourite porn star does, that’s his problem, not yours.

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  27. muslim

    Thank you, Umm Reem for writing this with a non-judgmental tone.

    We have made sex such a taboo subject, this is what drives our children to search the internet for information. May Allah protect us.

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  28. yaseenkatib

    as salaam alaikum,

    What came of your conversation with the prostitute? Also, I noticed that you stated African American brothers have a stigma attached to them, as one I would like to know what that stigma is because two men would not let me marry their daughters because I am black. I was a new muslim then and ended up marrying a non muslim as a result of being discouraged and I now face so many day to day challenges in marriage so it would truly benefit me if I knew what these stigmas were. Great article by the way

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    • ZAI

      Brother,
      I think as to the Sr.’s mentioning of that in her article, she was speaking about a generalization not just among Muslim’s, but most Americans, that slanders African American men….so she mentioned that as a preventative disclaimer so no one here jumps to conclusions.

      As to what you experienced, has to do with plain old racism…not any socio-cultural stigma per say.
      You can graduate from harvard, have an educated family going 4 or 5 generations back, practice the deen like a sahaba and even get a signed admission to heaven from above…and they will still say no. Most immigrant Muslims come from societies that are tribalistic and pretty racist. They bring those attitudes here and then ADD to that Western racist tendencies like that of white privilege, unofficial racial hierarchies, etc.

      African-American converts get the worst of it, but believe me we have the same problems BETWEEN the immigrants as well. I myself have been repeatedly rejected by Arab or South Asian families because I’m Afghan. Doesn’t matter I have a professional degree, practice the deen to the best of my ability, or whatever else. At this point I have just given up for the sake of my own dignity…Unfortunately I’m stuck in this God forsaken city with no Afghans until I finish my residency…but the DAY that’s done I’m GONE. Will head to California where there is an Afghan community and will have a fair shot. I’m in my early thirties now and don’t have the time to sit around and just hope for no racism, so I’m takin’ the easy way out…Hopefully the next generation won’t have to think about these things!

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      • yaseenkatib

        thank you for your insight. I only wish that I had known of these things as a new muslim and had someone to guide me through the process because often when you become a muslim there is not enough of a follow up or mentorship to ensure that you are making out alright. No one ever gave me dawa I became muslim on my own by the permission of Allah. I am just disappointed with the muslim community everywhere I go. Best wishes on your residency, I am in the medical field myself.

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      • siraaj

        Salaam alaykum bro,

        Don’t worry, it’s not just converts, even us born-verts who ethnically have origins in one place and western cultural dispositions go through similar issues with the community =D

        Siraaj

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      • Warrior

        Unfortunately you are right brother. The Muslim community today is a sad excuse, and a skeleton of the true Ummah that we were in the past. InshaAllah the Ummah will rise once again and establish ourselves with the true Islamic values and teachings.

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      • yaseenkatib

        I could not have said it better myself. I was just driving and Allah knows best but I believe I was besides a muslim youth in the lane next to me (based on the ornament hanging on his rearview mirror) and he had all his windows down blaring some of the most profane nasty sexual hip hop music I ever heard in my life. it was disgusting and sad. may Allah guide us all and protect us all. it shocks me that many of us turn our backs on what many of us have been searching for our whole lives.

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  29. Wallad Bin Logic

    I hope a man decides to weigh in at some point. I dare say the author is an expert on one side of the story but while it IS women suffering from this plight, a man needs to speak as well.

    Porn is a show. A ruse of skin and curves to lure you in and have you get aroused. Its fake and lame and otherwise stupid but still gives a person a kick for a little while before they have to find something else to “help” them get off.

    Now, you speak to your children “omitting unnecessary details” (lol) and of course, that ensures that children remain ever curious about the trash out there they shouldnt see. You shelter, leave out the details, and bam you lose. Why? Because kids ALWAYS find a way. You cant ban the internet, you cant ban TV, and you cant ban school so dont act as if you can shelter your kids to safety.

    What should we do rather? Teach how fake and unreal these things are. Push them away by diminishing its worth from the very beginning. There is no warmth or real desire from the sight of a plastic pornstars skin. There is no love in sex with a prostitute. You think 12 is young to be talking about it? Dont fool yourself. I knew about sex in the third grade. So damn naive. I had a friend once who had sex outside of marriage. I asked him how it was and what did he say? He said he didnt like it. He told me that it means nothing if you dont care about the person you have it with. For that reason alone Ive never let myself get near it. I learned from someone who learned the hard way.

    We have all these perfect/ultra religious people making these articles wondering whats going on and whining about how we’re in a mess without a single solution in sight or an actual understanding. I read this article because this is an important topic but no one really talks about anything…just something behind the curtain.

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    • Umm Reem

      Hold your horses brother, you haven’t read the entire series. This part is just the introduction to the topic, not a whining :)

      THe other things you mentioned in both of your comments, are thoroughly covered in the rest of the series,

      -why men fall in porn/sex addiction or seek out other women than their wives.
      -understanding men’s sexuality

      Basically I have “Islamiphised” a few books and workbooks on sex addiction…after consulting a sex-therapist

      As for speaking to my son, I have taught him all about sex myself when he was younger. And alhamdullilah I’ve noticed the tremendous positive effect it had, on all my kids, when they were taught from a positive perspective, thoroughly. There is no topic they don’t discuss with me alhamdullilah, including the topic of porn.

      And YES I omitted unnecessary information that he doesn’t need to know right now, like bondage, sadism, etc. Rest assured all his questions were answered, and they always come to me with all their questions related to such topics alhamdullilah.

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      • Warrior

        JazakAllah khair for touching on such an important issue that the Ummah is facing today. It is efforts like these that will help to change the Ummah for the better and to do away with these immoralities.

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      • UmmHamza

        Umm Reem, can you give us some tips on how to educate our sons and daughters (but particularly our sons– in light of these fitn) on the subject of sex. What do they need to know, and when? Maybe this would be a future article topic inshaAllah.

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      • Person

        Masha’Allah, you people have amazing stamina when it comes to replying to people behaving so rudely…

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  30. Aboo Talhaa

    Although a good read, I am appalled by the racist comment in the article (re stigma regarding African-American brothers). I am not sure where you have gotten such idea but there is no stigma of prostitution and porn attached with African-Americans.

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    • maliurj

      First of all i laud the sister for her research work on a taboo subject matter but the reality is that everyone sins in different ways. Most men watch porn if given the opportunity and most women backbite if given the opportunity. We all sin in different ways; So let’s not think that we are different than our brothers and sisters because someone is sinning differently than us. Having said that, the sister concluded that duaa is the weapon to fight this beast of habit. Muslims must remember what Allah subhana Wa Taala has promised His slaves:The Mercy of Allah in Regard to Forgiveness

      “O son of Adam, as long as you call upon Me and put your hope in Me, I have forgiven you for what you have done and I do not mind. O son of Adam, if your sins were to reach the clouds of the sky and then you would seek My forgiveness, I would forgive you. O son of Adam, if you were to come to Me with sins that are close to filling the earth and then you would meet Me without ascribing any partners with Me, I would certainly bring to you forgiveness close to filling it.”

      In this Hadithi Qudsi, Allah gives hope to mankind more than any other narration. It displays the quality and attribute of Allahs mercy. Indeed, He is ar-Rahman, the Most Compassionate, and ar-Raheem, the Most Merciful. In this Hadithi Qudsi, Allah tells man of the greatness of His forgiveness and mercy so that no one would despair due to the amount of sins he may have committed. This is supported by the following verse of the Holy Quran:

      Say: O My servants who have transgressed against their own souls, despair not of the mercy of Allah. Indeed, Allah forgives all sins. Truly, He is Most Forgiving, Most Merciful. (Surah az-Zumar 39:53)

      This hadith teaches us the importance of realizing Allahs mercy, having faith and hope in Him especially when making dua, calling to Allah alone for forgiveness, and the importance of repentance in the life and faith of a believer.

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  31. Halima

    Mashallah amazing article sis! I was a bit upset when I scrolled down too much and saw “to be continued”. Please continue this piece! Really looking forward to it. I’m glad I’m not the only one who thinks about this issue. I like you was once shocked and baffled once finding out a Muslim brother I knew watched pornography. I was very young and naive at the time, and admit to being raised into thinking Muslim men were immune from having serious sexual feelings and inclinations too. We’ve all must come to accept that they do. Also, I was once reading that a lot of the Muslim world view pornography and that they even do so the most. I’m not saying that’s it acceptable and okay, but we as Muslim women have got to stop thinking Muslim men aren’t susceptible to wanting to view pornography and commit acts outside of marriage. Yes it’s wrong but Muslim men are not infallible, like all human beings are not. I know it must be awfully hard having to see all these scantily clad women on t.v., banners, and the internet. I think we as Muslim women can do our part in helping by not giving our brothers, fathers, etc the viewing pleasure of all those reality tv shows and sitcoms we’re glued too. A lot of the women in them are always very attractive and dressed inappropriately.Sometimes it’s not even okay for us to watch. Aside from this aspect I’m sure there’s much more we can think of. Anyways, loved the article see. I feel like it may have been a real eye opener to many sisters. Please continue writing. :)

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    • maliurj

      Sis the reality is that even if a brother was placed in solitary confinement and his imaan declined to a level where he becomes influenced by the waswas of the shaytaan, he will perform inappropriate habits in appeasing his sexual appetite. Not because he is “bad’ or “good” for that matter but the lower the imaan, the more carnal one becomes. One declines to a lower level of being. The brothers who perform these secret habits yet are doing good deeds for the community while struggling to worship Allah SWT should still be given the respect based upon their work. Do not scorn them or judge them…make duaa for them and yourself! Because things could have been in the reverse…it could have been YOU!!

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      • Halima

        I’m not sure I was judging anyone in my comment. But okay whatever floats your boat. Have a nice day.

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  32. Ajmal Zulmanan

    Allahumma ja’alni min at-tayyibeen, wal mutta-tahireen, wal muhsineen, wa ma’al ladheena yahfadhohum fooroojahum. Please could you write this dua in Arabic. I’m not arabic but I’m having a hard time in pronouncing some words correctly. JazakAllah.

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  33. Azeem Khan

    Maybe spouses should spice up their own love life, to keep each other interested and engaged. See Yasir Qadhi like a garment series.

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    • Umm Reem

      Br. that will only solve the problem for those couples who are lacking intimacy excitement in their marriage.
      WHat about the others who are completely satisfied with their sexual life with their spouses, yet fall for this weakness?
      Why that happens…I will discuss that in the next part inshaAllah…

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  34. Luke

    Great article dead on point. While I see both as a sin and make no excuses. Better the porn than prostitutes. The deadly reality is that when a man sleeps with another woman, prostitute or not…He could spread HIV, AIDS, and other STDs to his wife & family. Many STDs can be accidentally spread from kissing if there is a cut in the mouth with blood. And they can be spread from using the same toilet seat if there is blood in the feces or urine.

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    • Mahmud

      Assalamualaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh

      Mashaa Allah, that is a pretty nice website and comment. May Allah accept it from you.

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  35. A Conversation With a Hooker: Adultery, Sex Add...

    [...] "I was exposed to several cases of devout Muslims suffering through porn addiction, which inevitably led to sexual exploration beyond monogamy. I don't like to call it addiction because the level of illegitimate sexual activities varies from occasional slips to being a complete addict. I went from being shocked, to denying that this even existed amongst our communities, to accepting that pornography and sex addiction has now plagued us, leaving our Ummah in a deep sexual mess."———-  [...]

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  36. Batool

    Assalamualaikum, great article but at the same time I have to say that this is not just a male problem, women and girls sometimes are perpetrators of this evil. Both genders are exposed to the same sleaze, May Allah protect us and save us all.

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  37. siraaj

    Saw a few common comments from the brothers, my thoughts are as follows:

    1. Porn / Prostitution Problem is the Wife’s Fault / Parent’s Fault

    Welcome to adulthood folks. When we make mistakes, we take responsibility for our actions, we don’t dump it on someone else. Whether you’re unmarried and someone is blocking you from marrying your dream girl or you’re married and your wife is more frigid than Antarctica all year long, you are always in control of yourself – your nafs aren’t holding a gun to your head, and you are most certainly not burdened with more than you can bear.

    If you make the mistake of falling into these sins, you need to simply take responsibility for the mistake and get help or get out of your bad situation, whether it’s through counseling, fasting, divorce, support groups, and so on.

    2. Polygyny is the Answer to Porn Addiction / Prostitution

    I’m very pro-polygyny myself, but this is not where you’ll find your answer. For those struggling with porn addiction and walked into marriage with it, if one wife didn’t help, what help will two wives give you – you’re still addicted, and now you’ll be “cheating” on two women who, if they knew, would not consider you a man to begin with.

    If your wife is not providing enough sexual relief for you, then you need to tell her that. At the same time, you need to find out why she doesn’t want to – is it something like frigidity, or are you not satisfying her needs (emotional / sexual) regularly the way you want her to satisfy your needs regularly. Get a therapist if necessary, but realize if you’re struggling to make one woman happy, you’ll multiply your struggles with the complications of jealousies and finances, on top of your own marital tone deafness – if you can’t figure out one woman, what makes you confident you’ll get it right if two of them are there?

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    • AlAthari

      I have fallen into this more than once, Astaghfirullah and I was once married to two young muslimahs. As our brother Siraaj said, polygamy isn’t always the answer. The funny thing is my wives were both much younger (18 and 24) than the prostitutes I visited and so much more beautiful. Infact, everytime I committed this haraam act with these prostitutes I felt disgusted with myself and with these women and I wanted them to leave as soon as possible.

      Why did I then visit them? I don’t understand, I still haven’t been able to make complete sense of it.

      I was one of those brothers that Umm Reem may Allah protect her describes; I was a Salafi, well-respected in the community and would teach Aqeedah to the youth on my days off.

      What a hypocrite I was/am!

      None of you know me so I can write this about myself.

      I had better recitation of Quraan than anyone else in our community and after the students of knowledge in our midst I was the most knowledgeable person.

      Mothers would comment to my mother that they want their sons to grow up like me.

      And yet I was engaged in the most haraam of actions whilst being married to two women.

      Astaghfirullahil Ladhi Laa Ilaaha Illa Anta Astaghfiruka wa atoobu ilaik.

      A lot of this comes from lack of humility and being pleased with yourself. The duaat and students of knowledge are prime targets for the Shaitan. When your ego is not suppressed, neither will your desires for the Haraam.

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      • Siraaj

        Allah knows best, I hope all is well with you and you’re past it now :)

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      • Salman

        Brother Siraaj I needed to talk to you about something, can I have your email akhi?

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      • Umm Reem

        Br. AlAthari,

        Thank you for commenting here and sharing your efforts. I hope and pray that you have overcome this disease.

        Were you able to see a sex therapist? If you still suffer through this, inshaAllah we can put you in touch with some of the therapists who can help you.

        And you are right, this issue is not about the beauty of a woman, or sexual satisfaction from the spouse, there are a number of other reasons why men fall prey to this, like the need of objectifying women, wrong exposure to sex in adolescence, the excitement and thrill of secrecy, constant triggers, some emotion void while growing up etc.

        I hope you were able to identify your cause. I can share some reading material with you if you like.

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      • Harry

        Sister please could you put the details of the therapists and reading materials so all of us can benefit. JazakhAllah khair

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      • Al Athari

        Ukhti Umm reem

        JazaakAllah Khairun for all your wishes and Aameen to all your duas.

        The matter resolved itself in quite a spectacular manner, wa lillahil hamd.

        Alhumdulillah, I lost my business and I was indebted to the tune of $2.5 million. Later, I was sent to prison for not being able to pay my debts off. Walillahil Hamd.

        My first wife left me and then asked me for a khula.

        My second wife passed away to cancer.

        Allah had mercy upon me and I was stopped in my tracks. All the evil I was up to came to a halt amidst all of this.

        Alhumdulillah.

        As I said, the cause for something like this in my case was clear. I became pleased with myself, I began to admire myself, I began to love myself too much.

        Kill the egos, brothers and sisters. Humble yourselves before Allah. Know that a person only falls into these tribulations because of the desire to have his or her ego stoked, the desire to become known amongst people and a misplaced sense of self-importance.

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  38. Aadam

    this is so true but one thing we need to pay attention to is that what is the reason that married brother who has the opportunity to fulfill their desires through halal way with their wives and get rewards for it go for some haram way like porn and prostitutes, What is lacking in their marriage that is making them go outside of halal ways and go to haram ways. A lot of sisters when they get busy in every day lives actually forget about their husbands, Romance in marriage is a very important part and if it is lacking there are more chances that a brother will stray away. sisters needs to take care of them selves in homes for their husbands, look beautiful and be a little more open towards their husbands be more playful. i am not justifying anything bad that we brothers do but i am just pointing out towards another side of the picture. being religious doesn’t mean you have to be dry and serious all the time with your spouse.

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  39. Nadine

    I don’t know how to feel honestly, as a young Muslim woman, I knew that this was happening, and I was always fed the idea that men’s desires cannot be satisfied, as if that’s an excuse for this behaviour. I just feel jaded about finding men and marrying them. Things like this make things for some of us women harder when it comes to marrying. We will to put 100% in, emotionally, sexually etc. but we still have to deal with the possibility that things like this will happen, that we will be cheated on or that we won’t be enough for our husbands for some reason,

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    • Ibrahim

      Dear sister, no need to feel that way. Just like Muslim women like you, not all Muslim men are into immoral ways to satisfy themselves. Some of us want to marry and be with one woman for the rest of our lives, put in that 100 % emotionally, financially, sexually, etc. and have a beautiful family life! As a young Muslim man, I can’t get more sincere than that. And we also have to deal with the possibility of a unfaithful wife, etc. I know of a few brothers who admitted to such acts but the majority do not respect it. Have a little hope Insha Allah.

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  40. lls

    I haven’t been able to go through all the comments, so please forgive me if I am repeating what has already been said. I am not in the least surprised to hear any of this, especially because I have heard it all before from community leaders who have had to intervene when it has come to light that certain ulama are clients of sex workers or make sexual use of young female fans. I cannot help but observe that the ulama in these situations are masters at shaming others for their behavior. Wherever you see shaming, you will find shame.

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    • omer

      Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

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      • lls

        I am sorry I was not clear, I meant `ulama as in those who are trained in well-known institutions abroad such as al-Azhar and in Mauritania. By community leaders, I mean men and women who are regionally or internationally respected Muslim leaders who have religious training either in traditional schools or in universities but who are not considered `ulama in the strict sense of the term.

        I am sorry you believe that Muslim majority countries do not face these problems, but they do, Saudis included. No human civilization is without abuse. Childhood sexual abuse, rape, prostitution, etc., are endemic to all human societies. Rules do not keep it from happening, they only deal with the crimes when they are committed. The very presence of the criminal code and prosecutions of such cases demonstrate that people continue to do it. And as with all crime, only a portion of people are ever caught. In any case, the purpose of this article is to make the point that this is a problem that all Muslims must face and to urge us all to become more aware of what goes on in our communities.

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      • ZAI

        Brother,
        You have got to be joking. Ask anyone who has lived in Saudi Arabia
        for a long period of time and they will tell you the problem of prostitution is alive and well. Many South Asian, Filipino and African expatriates act as “pimps” and steer “clients” to prostitutes. The only difference is it’s by word of mouth to avoid getting caught, whereas here there are more open or easier avenues. Further, plenty of Saudi men go to Bahrain to do their “partying”.

        Yes, a decent public society helps to some degree…but not completely.
        Plenty of men will find ways to do what they want, regardless of the society.
        The problems are NOT eliminated…they just go underground.
        It’s a good first step..thats all.

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      • Scattered Pearls

        Living in Saudi helps, I’ve been there myself. But sometimes it exasperates the situation as well. The heat, mixed with the empty and shallow materialism that the Gulf encourages can lead to young men using sex just to feel something real. Much harder to come by hard pornography though, so it will help the porn addicts.

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      • Hyde

        Exactly!
        Why do Muslims think that the Saudis or even generally the the entire Gulf Arab area are so pious ? Are there not night clubs and brothels in Dubai ? No Saudi with money thinks twice about being chaste; they do what they want with the pretty girls from all over the world, which are brought to them, to their feet. If some poor chap here in the West does feel tempted he may have to orchestrate the zina act, not have the whole shebang brought to his feet.

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      • umm a

        Brother you probably are unaware of the scope of this problem. Its epidemic in proportion and no country is immune to it, KSA included. I was in Pakistan but my husband fell in this trap just like a lot of the men there.Artificial Restriction do not serve a purpose if there is a will to engage in filth. the first step is to realize and admit that the problemm exists.

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  41. Zuzu

    How many companions confessed to zina? You make it seem like there were 30 or 50 or 80 whereas it is not more than the number of fingers in one hand.

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  42. UmmA.

    Assalamu-alaikum and JazaakAllahu khayr for bringing this up sister – I was kind of shocked/scandalized, but I realized I probably knew it all along. I grew up in the Middle East as an expat and grew up thinking that a muslim identity and alcohol were just totally incompatible, and was still naive at the age of 18 when I took a co-medical student friend aside and told her that the bearded Muslim man would feel offended if she asked him about alcohol intake while taking a ‘social history’ and lo and behold, he was in with alcoholic liver cirrhosis – I went home flabbergasted and mentioned it to my dad who then kind of casually acknowledged that he did know muslims who drank – it actually took me years to get over my disbelief :) I still feel deeply embarrassed when I come across a patient in the hospital with an obvious Muslim name and know he’s in for an STD/alcohol related issue. I then have to try consciously to not judge and think of my own shortcomings. Well, kind of on a tangent, but sister UmmReem, we need another series on alcohol use and abuse in our community.

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  43. Hyde

    Well where does one begin?
    Most of the comments have already said enough but let me state mine.
    It perhaps took sister Reem sometime to that find out what Muslim men are doing; I found nearly everything by the time I was 18. I knew stuff in high school, but never anything remote to this. By the time I was college, it was Muslims who introduced to be what pornography and everything else that goes with was. I was not naive, but to see Muslims talk openly about sex and women in lewd and obscene ways was quite a shock. I had been told by so-called pious Muslim brothers a little tumble in hay does not hurt anybody. Others told me, I am not hafiz anyway, i.e. if you can barely pray why pretend to so pious when it comes to girls?

    But that shock did not last long as my non-Muslim friends started telling me about how I can be a good Muslim, while they knew many Muslim that were doing everything that I had said Islam did not allow. The stories are too numerous to recount here, but this post should not be a shock to anybody who grew up in the West. There were hardly any Muslims I know that have not have had a girlfriend or some sort of liaison with somebody. In fact I know Muslims who have children out of wedlock.

    And yes most of them are those secularized ones, that have never seen the inside of the masjid, but the group also includes who were azan and thobe wearing, and when they go through the salafi burnout, sex is the first thing they turn to.

    I know non-Muslim girls who make fun of me because I have told them I do not go to clubs, because they have said there are more Muslims who hit on them in clubs than anybody else. Tell me, what does one say to that? Is there any comeback?
    Now of course there is a new phenomenon of Muslim couples, i.e. “we are going to get married”. Holding hands, making out, yet there still going to get married.

    There are two more things I ought to highlight, but am assuming you WILL cover them in your up and coming posts.
    i. The way zina and “relationships” have completely overtaken the Muslim world. From Pakistan to the Middle East, some of the worst form of “Muslim” blogs are about “rendezvous” and “how you can get away with it”
    ii. The image of the Muslim women as some sort of the madonnas of truth was sadly corrupted for me when I saw Muslim girls, practicing Muslim girls doing the thinkable. I have seen them in parks with boys that I know are not their husbands. Some even manage to wear the hijabs.
    So the problem is not pornography, masturbation, hookers, adultery, fornication, it is that Muslims have subbed to zina. Left and right. The only real time my faith was ever shaken was by Muslims themselves. Please, please address these issues in your upcoming post.

    Oh btw, please don’t be naive to think polygamy is all of a sudden going to solve the problems. Lust is state of mind. and whether it is one woman or two women or ten.
    Polygamy is not the answer to this problem.

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    • Umm Reem

      Hyde,
      I’m Umm Reem…Reem is my daughter :)

      And yes I agree with you. Our Ummah is suffering through strange sexual phenomenons, and that is because we are living in a hypersexual society and we breath the same air and drink the same water, so general society issues are OUR issues too.

      That’s why I wrote the post a while back about understanding female sexual struggles…and now I”m addressing this issue. InshaAllah I will try to cover all these problems in detail…

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      • Hyde

        Well Reem is lucky for having you as a mother. Most of us her not lucky. Just because we nod our our stupid heads and say slaams to our parents, they think everything is dandy…if parents were to even imagine what their kids are up to, especially those perfect little hijabis, they would not be so comfortable in day dreaming about what ever they are day dreaming about…at this rate it would be impossible to marry virgins…what will happen to chaste for chaste ?

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    • whatever

      salafi burnout? on another note… I am starting to believe my mom that hasb wa nasb is important, if you come from a noble family you are less likely to do these things even if not overtly religious….

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      • Hyde

        I beg your pardon! Have you looked at the Saudi Royal Family ? But then again, I hardly classify them as noble…in fact has there ever been a righteous scholar that came from the nejd ?

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      • zulmanan2001

        Brother Hyde forgive me for saying so but your mentality is the same as that of a hindu Brahmin.

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      • Hyde

        Nothing against Hindu Brahmins, but what, rather how does your comment have anything to do with my comment ? Unless of course there are hindu brahmins out there discussing Islamic scholarship that cames from the nejd ? LOL

        The hypocrisy of the Saudi is verifiable. And so is the Wahabi doppelganger effect, especially then it is connected to this particular issue.

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      • whatever

        Br Hyde, who said anything bout Saudi royalty. I am talking about hasb wa nasb: noble families that are shareef, my presumption is that men from such backgrounds have less tendency to do all that. and secondly why are you saying there have not been any good scholars from Najd, there have been plenty, it is another issue they don’t criticize the royal fam.

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      • Hyde

        Okay I agree with your first statement, about hasb wa nasb, but I doubt that the Saudi Royal family is anything remotely close to that.

        Can you name some classical scholars from the Najd? And (Abdul Whaab does not count).

        I am not going to write a harangue on the House of Saud. There is ample evidence to show what they do and what they say.

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  44. Hassan

    I think it will be Arabs who will go to prostitutes. Desis do not spend money.

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    • Hyde

      Yeah but the freshie desis are are equally horrible. I know one kid who within a year of being in this country was suspended from continuous sexual harassment, another on the block was actually sent to juvie for stalking. All under 18 by the way.
      They come from a sexually repressed country and when they see short skirts, they just go mad.
      And you know the worst part if it is that the islamophobes jump on this and blame everybody else in the community.

      We should have a label to these Muslim countries: Please stop sending your low class garbage to our communities. We have enough problems. We do not need them redoubled and provide more fodder for the islamaphobes.

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      • Hyde

        But yeah asians are well known for their cheapness. Even when the become doctors and lawyers, cheapness stays with them. It is not even about the money, but Iklaq, you know…juts uggghhh.

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      • Tasnim

        hey man, after reading ALLLLL your -shall we say- insightful comments i’m sorta really wondering whether your a desi or an arab. or neither. or both (just to have that option open…unlikely as it is…..>.<..)
        and your comment about the cheapness of asians….its mostly true.
        Indeed we are quite frugal with our money. But that only because these asians come from these poor third world countrys..so its either spending money or spending less money.
        i mean why buy toilet paper for $5 when you can buy it for $4.99?!?
        Subhanallah the logic!

        (btw im asian..and im not trying to insult the asians. its just soo ….true)

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      • Maakhlool

        But Hyde…why are you saying this against the “freshie desis”

        When you are a desi yourself?

        anyways….you used the word “wahabi”

        your use of the word “wahabi” is another proof that you are desi…

        So I thought you should see this

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  45. Hassan

    Polygamy may not be solution for the ones addicted to porn, early marriage and polygamy are ways to keep young men away from falling into the addiction

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  46. Zulfiqar

    Dear Sister, you are living in the real world and as such you have to deal with real problems.

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  47. Regretfully

    Sadly, the article has had an effect on me as I am going through my own personal issues. I could easily fall under the category of ‘seemingly-pious’ brothers that the sister mentioned in her article. My issues with porn began whilst I was living in a Muslim country. Throughout my life I never leered towards such things (rather I found them abhorrent) until finally I became too frustrated. At that point in my life I never thought I would get married. My parents made it a point to let me marry only and until I had completed my studies and (really good) job. For me, this could well have been another twenty years (it sure did feel that way). When I was finally able to after convince them (and even arguing with them), I was able to marry a pious but very sheltered muslimah (who I was not that crazy about but decided to marry thinking that it would be a new beginning as this was something I was encouraged to believe within various lectures and khutbas that I listened to).
    Needless to say, this bad behaviour leaked over into my married life. To make matters worse, my wife, who had no idea how to solve the problem complained to my parents and siblings, telling them everything that I had watched online. As a consequence, my relationship with my family became odd and I developed trust issues with my wife, she worries what I do when we are not together, I worry that she will tell everyone the sordid details of what I have done. Had we not had children, I am sure my wife would have left me a long time ago.
    Although I have gotten help regarding these issues (and continue to do so), I am doubtful that they can go away as these feelings and desires will always be occupying a place in my heart/psyche in some form. Have been disturbed by people who rattle off hadiths or verses from the Qur’an, thinking that listening to them is enough of a solution. At times, I have been so frustrated that I would even go so low as to contemplate suicide. I cannot fulfil completely through one woman (as it comes with its own challenges) and I cannot do so by other means (which I have been tempted to try more than once).

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    • gunal

      I am sooo sorry. Sounds like you have lost control of a fundamental part of your life; your other half, the one who is supposed to be your other half going through life together, resolving life issues together. I can associate with that.

      But, let me tell you this (what I came to realise); there is always a good result from even things we think are misfortunes of our lives. If your wife kept quiet and all this didn’t boil over to the point it was embarassing to look at people around you, you would continue to live your life the same way. Without realising how your addiction would be affecting the people around you. I know that people around us are not the best people to offer cunstractive resolution to our problems. Because subconsciously they blame themselves for your problems. In the same way perhaps you would be shunning your brother in your situation the same way in order to disown the blame if you like…

      So, you may have lost a fundamental part of your life but rejoice in the knowledge that there is even more fundamental Person in our lives (our Allah) that you can count on if you sincerely want help to go through your life with.

      Best Wishes

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  48. muslimah

    I’m going to take a wild guess on this (haven’t read anyone’s comments yet) and say the real problem lies in how we dictate Islam to our men. Sometimes our Ummah can be very hostile, as the restrictions on porn and the haram are very strict it is taught out in a strict way. As they say, strict parents come with rebellious kids. It’s sorta the same concept. Muslim men are more prone to this because we don’t live in a Muslim country, and our principles aren’t so American. That’s why the hooker did not say Chrisitan, or Jewish, or whatever. Most American Christians and Jews are very westernized (and I’m talking about the ones who are not so consistent with their religion), compared to Muslims. They accept the fact that porn does exist and it’s mediocre to see everything so sexualized, though it it unfortunate, than Muslims with the whole strict Muslim world background. I guess it’s because of society. It’s not a Muslim society. That’s why men are just more prone to it. (Maybe Muslim women are too, who knows). Allah swt knows best.

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  49. Reyhan Hoq

    Umm Hamza, I was thinking the same thing! If I become a parent one day (إن شاء الله) I want my kids to be better prepared for the world than I was growing up.

    بارك الله فيكم Umm Reem.

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  50. Hyde

    I guess this would be relevant to be put here.
    on youtube: The Great Porn Experiment: Gary Wilson at TEDxGlasgow

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  51. Umm Abdallah

    As salam Aleykum !! Mash’Allah very beneficial ,this is a huge problem in our ummah. Can someone tell me please how to get in touch with Umm Reem ? an e-mail or anything plez ,Jazzak’Allahu khayr

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  52. Amena

    Jazakillahu khayr for the article. This is, unfortunately, a growing problem within our communities. As a female, I get worried. How can I consider a brother for marriage, what if he has such an addiction? How will I know? Is this a behavior of the majority of brothers?

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    • Hyde

      Let’s lot lose all faith, sister. And even though I have seen worse of the worse starting even at 16, I would still fathom that they are good brothers out there, some who by the grace of God are protected, others who suffer in silence but continue to go on. I think it was mentioned above, your hormones start kicking in at 14-15 and you are supposed to wait until 35 ? Like how absurd is that ? I find it increasingly hard to believe that a grown man in this day age will not fall into some sort of fitnah. Women are beautiful, they just are even the annoying ones :) so how long, eh ?

      I work in the heart of NYC, and I testify that in the summer, it ain’t easy! Especially since I have had ample “opportunities” to go all the way. You do your best, but for how long ? Just because the guy does not have a girlfriend or have girls calling him at home, does not mean he can’t get into trouble. Most Muslims I knew in hs and college had open girlfriends, more often then not, having Muslim, i.e. hijabi girlfriends. Yet there were other who had “experiences” and then let the guilt built up and then, etc, etc the circle goes on and on.

      It may not be an addiction, but lapses here and there are going to get common as the halaal becomes more difficult.

      And not start a gender war, but I also have lost faith in Muslim girls. One used to think that if there was one good thing of dignity and purity, it would have been Muslim girls, but after going through life as I did, I have had seen enough disgusting things from the so-called sisters as well. What do you say when your non-Muslim friend goes into details about his “Muslim” girlfriend.

      So I trying to say sister, don’t give up all hope, but at the same time, see the horizon from a brother’s point of view as well.

      May God protect us all, since we need that protection more than ever before.

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      • MozlimPowerRider

        Right on! Man! Right On! I live in Windsor, Ontario, where University of Windsor is located and trust me their are tons of hijabi girls with tight pants and tight shirts who have boyfriends. Shit I’ve even seen them confidently smiling and talking to non-muslim guys like nothing. I even heard sex stories between Hijabi/Non-Hijabi Muslima girls and NON-MUSLIM guys. Imagine a hardcore islam following man all the sudden ends up with 2nd hand wife who lost her virginity and naked innocence to Non-Muslim man in the past. Think about all the nightmares and jealousy her muslim husband has to go through tolerating like dayuth(cuckold: one who lets his wife commit adultery), and visualizing all the sex acts his wife has done with the previous man. There isn’t just one solution, but many and parents should also take note. Start MAHER-FREE MARRIAGES that too at a young age, let Muslim guys talk to Muslim girls as long as Muslim parents are there, and stop raising your daughter to be gold-diggers. I laugh at used gold-digging non-virgin muslim in disguise slutty girls wanting to marry a guy who is willing to pay high maher. Simple as this, if you ain’t a virgin or have lost your virginity outside a previous marriage, than be ready for low mahers or zero mahers straight up. Just like I ain’t paying for a 2nd hand car tons of money.

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      • Hyde

        I am not sure about previous marriages, but if the girl has been around the block, she should not be aiming for “special privileges”.

        Throughout all this, I think it should be known and acknowledged that if women have sexual desires, which of course they do, they act on it readily as the men do. This society promotes zina, makes it easier to do than anything. Even as an introvert, misanthrope, loner, one would be surprised how many opportunities I have had to forinincate, from everything to having girlfriends to do one night stands.

        Yes they are practicing Muslim women out there, but there is certain corp, especially that go to these liberal stinking colleges far away from home.

        If a woman shows outward modesty, I give her the benefit of the doubt, as I think we all should, but weather she is wearing a hijab or not, if one were to witness her openly flirting, frolicing around or heck even making out, then obviously that is going to play into your judgement about her.

        There are plenty of ghoulish stories of women who may still be virgin, but been around the three bases time and time again. There may not have been penetrative sex, but what is the point if she has everything else but that ? Of course this relates to those who may be considered working professionals, not the one who flaunts her boyfriend out openly.

        All in all we have all fallen. We have gone from not committing zina to being committed to zina. And then why we wonder the ummah is such a bad state.

        There have been sisters who have worried about future husbands who may have a past or an addiction, but equally they are brothers who wonder if the “chaste for the chaste” still exists ?

        “oh, women of virtue, where are thou ?”

        (BTW I have read enough Shakespeare to know what a cuckold is.
        …that cuckold lives in bliss
        Who, certain of his fate, loves not his wronger,
        But, oh, what damnèd minutes tells he o’er
        Who dotes, yet doubts— suspects, yet soundly loves!)

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      • Ibrahim

        It’s testimony like these that scare single Muslim guys like me, yet we get all the blame for being ‘judgmental’. I can only pray sincerely that my wife is chaste, whilst ensuring I stay chaste myself.

        It takes some guts, but in the end we must hope for the best..

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  53. Mohamed

    Umm..this is a bit awkward. I’m sure I put in a comment a few days ago, can’t find it haha

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  54. Ajmal Zulmanan

    Assalaamualiekum.

    When is the 2nd part of this article coming out?

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  55. Reyhan Hoq

    Umm Reem,
    I’m a youth coordinator at Noor Islamic Cultural Center in Columbus, OH. I was wondering if I could have your personal contact.

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  56. Ramadan Day 6 | Psychedelic Spinster

    [...] available, some of them horrified me, like the prevalence of Zina, (fornication and adultery) among pious men in the muslim community, which left me confused, doubtful and suspicious, but more truly depressed for the world we live [...]

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  57. Mona

    I had a real issue with this paragraph that was written:

    “Fast-forward ten years, another sister called me, crying, bawling about her marital issues, confessing, “My husband sees prostitutes.” Her husband is, also, not only a well known young Muslim of the community but someone that practicing Muslim parents would desire for their daughter’s prospective husband. My reaction this time was vastly different; I responded to her matter-of-factly, “It happens sometimes.”

    This disturbed me for many reasons and I wouldn’t expect a non-Muslim to write this let alone a Muslim bc as Muslims, we should always hate haram and we should never become desensitized by such a horrid act. I can understand becoming desensitized to the dress of non-Muslims, to seeing people even smoke maybe….but to this?

    I can’t imagine ever becoming desensitized to hearing about a school shooting, to hearing about someone murdering someone else, nor to a married man, a married Muslim man, who sees prostitutes.

    Sometimes we don’t realize the power of written words…and I felt that comment of “It happens sometimes” belittled many Muslim women’s experiences of dealing with husbands who go to prostitutes.

    These same husbands who Allah has decreed the punishment of death in this life…for those who cheat on their spouses, and these sisters contact another sister for help, and that sister, regardless of hearing about it a 1000 times, just like regardless of me hearing about the death of a child a 1000 times, we can never respond with “It happens sometimes”…..

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  58. StrangerFromTheEast

    This is what happens when a woman refuses to satisfy her man’s desires. I request the author not to remain bewildered anymore. Its actually simple. Degeneration of society and living in the west is one thing, but all of those can be very very easily overcome if a wife is willing enough to help satisfy a man’s desires. I feel ashamed and shy to type all this, but this is the truth.

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    • Mona

      I believe it has very little to do with a man being satisfied sexually by his wife, and there is lots of proof to back this. Recently, there was this marriage counselor who wrote about why men cheat, and 92% said it wasn’t about the sex: http://www.oprah.com/relationships/Why-Men-Cheat_2/2

      Also, when a man is getting satisfied by outside means…he is the one not fulfilling his wife’s desires, and leaving his wife without any physical intimacy.

      Lastly, if a man is not pleased with his wife, he can divorce her. Cheating on her in any way, especially, by potentially giving her a life threatening disease by going to strangers and prostitutes, then that man deserves the punishment of death as Allah decreed for the believers who do this.

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      • StrangerFromTheEast

        The most truthful and wise of men said that a woman is cursed when she refuses to fulfill her husband’s desires. Isn’t that correct?

        How serious those words of the Prophet are, and now we understand the consequences!

        Why do believing women find this statement of the prophet hard to digest? Do they not understand that men and women are equal, yet different? A man can turn animal if this desire isn’t met!

        Agreed that a man shouldn’t do as animals do, and he deserves punishment for it. but we’re talking causes and solutions here. A good place to start is the Quran and Sunnah, not ridiculous scientific research that tells you one thing today and another tomorrow. We need to to get to the root(s) of the problem in what seems to be a complex issue with plenty of causes and factors bundled in it.

        In response to your last point; There is no reason for a muslim man to seek unlawful means if he has a wife that pleases him when he looks at her, who obeys him and loves him. Its impossible. This is all from my own perspective and Allah Knows Best.

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      • Aashiq Hussain

        I wouldn’t give Oprah that much importance to quote her when it comes to Islamic matters. We are not talking about Non-Muslim men here. They even have spouse swapping things. Yet it is OK for them.
        I agree with you to some extent. You can cheat on her but you can’t deceive Allah. “I wasn’t satisfied with her, so I went to prostitute” won’t work in hereafter.
        Man should talk to his wife about this. I am sure you can resolve it. If it doesn’t work, you can seek divorce. Cheating is no solution. But if you are fascinated by the women in porn movies then know that, no matter how many women you sleep with you will NEVER be satisfied with one.

        First thing that might help you from staying away from cheating is lowering your gaze. Second, You shouldn’t forget Allah when your hormones are crazy.

        I am not married guy. I know how hard it is today to support a family financially today. How can you have a wife and/or kids and yet pay a prostitute :P

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      • Ajmal Zulmanan

        I think it’s less to do with women refusing their husbands but more to do with disease in men’s hearts and it’s addiction.

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      • Mona

        Looking to the Quran and Sunnah, we understand that if a man cheats on his wife, the punishment in this life is a painful death for him, correct?

        We also understand that if a woman doesn’t meet her husband’s desires, then the man has three halal options: 1. Seek a resolution (ie: marriage counseling) so that the wife and husband can both learn to meet one another’s needs and desires. 2. Divorce her and marry another woman or 3. Marry a second wife.

        There is no “A man can turn animal if this desire isn’t met!” as you write because Allah has created us higher than this.

        Also, we need to look at the very sad fact of the men who do this to women who are satisfying the desires of their husbands and who are doing their best to make their husbands happy.

        We need to look at the sad fact that these husbands also have children who are going to be affected greatly by their actions.

        We need to look at the sad fact that some of these men are not even married, and instead of choosing a Muslim woman, those who they remind to cover themselves, and those whom they are supposed to protect, they are paying women to uncover themselves and do unlawful acts.

        There is no justification for any of this, brother/sister, and that is what I am simply writing.

        The why’s are many-porn being easily available, women dressed provocatively, men not having patience, hikmah, and not getting help.

        The Prophet Salla Allahu alayhi wa salam said, “I have not left behind any fitnah more harmful to men than women.”

        Now, because this multi billion dollar business of sex trafficking is becoming so rampant among Muslim men, we need to address the solutions, and stop trying to point the blame, because at the end of the day, that has very little use, in helping these brothers stop this corrupt behavior and major sin.

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  59. SisterM

    It is so funny how everyone thinks porn is men’s problem.I am a practicing sister and I have been addicted for a while now.I think parents should be careful with the kinds if family members/friends that they let come close to their children.I was first exposed to porn before the age of 10. And this went on throughout my teenage years then I started practicing Islam.My advice is never ever go near it because it is so hard to stop it.I stay away for months and all of a sudden I just become bored and I fall into it again and again.If I could turn back the hands of time I will never even go near it.
    It affects your life and progress.
    Stay far away from it and keep your children too far from it.
    I just pray Allah helps me stop completely because people look up to me due to my taking of al-Maghrib, al-huda classes etc.And Allah knows that am no where near pious.
    The painful thing is I fell again into it on the 24 of Ramadan

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    • Hyde

      Sisters watching pornography is just bizarre well at least that is what I used to think. Coming of age and seeing girls in hijab making out and messing around with boys, I would not surprised that pornography is a problem in the female gender as well.

      Marriages will harder on both sides.

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      • SisterM

        Sometimes it better not to judge or make comments without putting yourself in the person shoes.Like i said in my original comment,this started even before i started practicing. And its is so addictive that it is very hard to stop.

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      • Hyde

        I genuinely feel bad for people who had been exposed to pornography at a young age because it will ruin their childhood. I did not know what it was until my late teens, perhaps that is why I had such a wonderful childhood. I did things that boys do, but nothing vulgar or haraam.
        Besides pornography can only get you so far; eventually your body will be used up for it and then the next step would be zina.

        There have been studies done on excessive masturbation/pornography use and it’s “lethal” consequences on a man’s life, but i guess perhaps women should be now taken under survey as well.

        Of course a women’s sexuality is different from men, but may God protect you sister [what age group would fall in] anyway.

        Interesting question is that do women have same responsibility to tell their future husbands that they have a porn problem ?

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      • T

        sister i totally sympathize with you. esp with this lap top i have in my hand right now…reading these articles however always remind me of the truth…us girls hardly talk about sex we always talk about marriage…
        so we cant really distinguish the girls with dirty profiles from the ones with clean ones. (well in my group of strong faith-ed niqabbi friends) maybe it a mercy from Allah. and then again it may be istidraaj, respite.

        yet the hadith: :ما أصر من إستغفر
        He does not persist the one who seeks forgiveness.

        Allahumma aghfirli.

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    • Mahmud

      Assalamualaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh

      If you can reduce it in any way and keep consistent on that, then reduce it. An example of this is a man who is used to committing sodomy, but he then turns to females hoping Allah will not punish him as severely as they are purer for him.

      So, in whatever way you can, limit it.

      You should not consider yourself pious whether people look up to you or not, and you should not feel pure once you’ve quit the deed.

      http://quran.com/53/31-32

      Never give up salah. One day your Islam will help you inshaa Allah.
      http://quran.com/29/45

      Also, hide your sins. Don’t you remember what the Messenger of Allah sallahualayhiwasalam said about those who open up to others about their sins?

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    • Zak

      @SisterM
      I know exactly where you’re coming from and my heart goes out to you.
      This Ramadan was going to be special, it was.
      I was going to complete the recital of an entire Qur’an by the 27th night, I was
      Then “something” just happened to spoil all those best laid plans and intentions… ;(

      But we can’t just give up and have to keep trying and asking for forgiveness and renew our vows. It is hope that should be our driving force. We take a fall, get up, dust ourselves down and just start over. This is different to the notion that “Oh it’s ok, I can repent afterwards” where we never stop to think “I might never draw breath afterwards”.

      I guess what I am trying to say is, just be sincere when you are repenting for your mistakes and sins, even if you continue to commit that wrong a million times, each time you repent with true remorse, your intention is to never commit it again.

      Maybe scholars here will correct me but it was Azazil’s lack of hope for forgiveness, as well as his pride and arrogance that led to his downfall and becoming Iblis. Perhaps it’s a message to us that forgiveness is for those who seek it and not those who feel they are beyond salvation.

      Again before his downfall, Azazil was the most affluent in prayers/worship (please correct me if I am wrong). So here it should be seen that one’s worship is not a measure of piety. Moreover “qiyaam” and “sujood” are there because of our impiety and our mistakes. How many times are we reminded that Allah does not need our worship. It must then be simply for our benefit.

      Many might think it’s easy for me to sit here and say “pray salat tul tauba every night after isha, read salaatul chaast every morning before a quarter of the day has passed and try to read salaat ul tasbih whenever you can” but I am writing from experience. I am not a preacher and am definitely probably worst on this thread. I can’t go into detail here because of the possible sin of divulging one’s mistakes to others. I guess that when one is busy praying or reciting verses that one simply doesn’t understand, it at least protects him or her from doing wrong. I sometimes just go to sleep – at least am not spending that time doing wrong. Then I see dreams that somehow fill me with hope.

      The important thing here is that begging him to make you better and to prevent you from doing wrong even if it means that you die before doing it, may eventually make you stronger. It would be nice to think that one day I will be able to look back at say I “had” that weakness but now I’m over it. But saying that is perhaps the sin of pride.. Maybe salvation is living with your mistakes and the uncertainty and fear you may fall into that trap any moment but also in the hope that HE will forgive you if and when you do.

      I don’t know whether I will commit that sin again in the next few days but I would really love to end Ramadan on a “high” note but I know one thing for sure – while spending time writing this article, your brother has refrained from abhorrent actions. And may Allah reward my sister for saving her brother from that sin because it was her comment that prompted him.

      Finally I would like to show respect to all brothers and sisters in this thread who have come out and “confessed” their mistakes. It takes a lot of courage.

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  60. Al Athari

    For those blaming ‘pornography, yes it probably does have an effect but in my case I had never watched porn before nor do I ever intend to as I find the entire idea rather distasteful. I had no exposure to porn, yet I was having full blown sexual affairs with other women, paid and unpaid.

    I am so deeply affected by this that I think I should write an article about my situation. It will help many, many brothers whom I know have fallen into these sins.

    May Allah rectify all our affairs. Aameen

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  61. Harvey

    Dear Sister Umm Reem,

    When is part 2 of this article coming? I am looking forward to reading suggestions and solutions to overcome this evil acts.

    Thanks,

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    • Hyde

      There are no solutions to this “evil problem”. As someone who was late to sexual activity, I can tell it is an abyss with no end. Unrepressed sexual activity will lead to masturbation, to pornography, to “massage parlors”, to strip clubs, to one night stands, to “friends with benefits”, to having girlfriends, to having blown out affairs. There goes the job, the marriage, the self-respect, Salah, the deen…all gone.

      (And now women are equally culprit in these abominations. Plenty of Muslim girls going through same thing)

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  62. Rabia M

    Well,In the Quran Allah has already told us wht’sright and what’swrong…and after reading the Quran and having knowledge about if they still do things like things,then i don’t think that they’re its necessery for them to pray and read the Quran…then again we are no one to judge anyone…I think that we should beg Allah for his kindness and mercy and we should pray for our selves…

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  63. Ahmed Shafiki

    It takes knowledge of the problem to get past it. And its a BIOLOGICAL PROBLEM, not a narrow-minded moral issue. Porn releases dopamine and gets you hooked same way coke does. or for that matter, any other addiction/compulsion. As a man who has gone through it, I’m telling you, you need to reboot. Yes, make dua for Allah to give you the strength, but you need to take matters into your own hands and do the rebooting for yourself. It DOES NOT HELP to frame this as a moral issue, calling men evil, non-Muslims, disgusting, etc.

    For anybody struggling, check out “The Willpower Instinct” by Kelly McGonigal and yourbrainonporn.org. You’ll find what you need there. Don’t give up.

    And for the rest of you….get off your high horse. you haven’t walked a mile in my or anyone else’s shoes. You have no clue what it’s like to struggle with a porn addiction, so shelf that sanctimonious talk. Have some compassion.

    *This comment was edited by the MM Comments Team in order to comply with our Comments Policy*
    *Note from Comments Team: Please keep your comments free of inappropriate language to avoid being censured*

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    • gunal

      Ahmed, in response to what you said: ” And for the rest of you….get off your high horse. you haven’t walked a mile in my or anyone else’s shoes. You have no clue what it’s like to struggle with a porn addiction, so shelf that sanctimonious talk. Have some compassion.”

      I don’t feel anyone can get on their high horse when trying to help someone with an addiction…Well, can, in frustration perhaps… but not in the sense you meant it anyway… People having to live with an addicted person feel frustrated. Because generally the person who is addicted does not see there is a problem with their attitude. They see the problem is with others who do not understand them; who do not share the same views. If you want someone to sympathise with your problem, first, stop blaming others for not understanding you. No! No one can be in your shoes. Even two people with the same problem will have different issues to deal with in their lives.

      I agree with you, it is a biological problem. A problem that every individual in our society can easily develop. Stop beating round the bush, giving excuses to what it is and how difficult it is to deal with. The Quran says we will be giving a lot of excuses for our bad actions on judgement day. (Just like the ones we all give in this life.) Also says; no problem is given to you that you cannot bear.

      I believe any addiction is, a moral issue. All individuals should know it is wrong and should not be tolerated in order to achieve a healthier society. Good! You realised it and are on your way dealing with it.

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  64. Munis

    Following Islam is easy.. Follow Islam and make Nikahh easy, as it is supposed to be. In sha Allah we will be able to overcome these problems then.
    Follow the Sunnah and marry your daughters considering the Deen and nature of a person, not his job or status (for which there is no assurance of safety for anyone). May Allah help all the brothers find wives who can help them overcome their sins.

    JazakAllah Umm Reem.. Great Article

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  65. A Conversation With a Hooker: Adultery, Sex Add...

    […] "I was exposed to several cases of devout Muslims suffering through porn addiction, which inevitably led to sexual exploration beyond monogamy……I went from being shocked, to denying that this even existed amongst our communities, to accepting that pornography and sex addiction has now plagued us, leaving our Ummah in a deep sexual mess."———-  […]

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  66. Hugh Slaman

    Why are people believing all this so readily? Isn’t it time we Muslims remembered the core ideas of the science of Rijal within the study of hadiths, something with which Allah has distinguished our community from all others?

    Let me explain my perspective so that people can have a model for how to approach reports like this on the internet.

    I do not at all know who the author is, as this is the first article by her I have encountered. I doubt I will ever come close to knowing who she is. At the moment, she is not much more than a name on the internet to me, on a website I have never seen before. This means that the author is, to me, at this time, “unknown”. There may be many others on these boards who will say something different, and for all i know they know her well, yet all the people posting here are unknowns to me as well, just as I am unknown to them. I do not say anything bad about her in pointing this out; rather, I merely point to the current limitations on my knowledge: for me, from my perspective, right here and now, the author is unknown as to her reliability and trustworthiness, and so a huge question mark hangs over what she (or anyone else I have ever heard of before) reports.

    Of course, I am told that the author has a bachelor’s degree from the American Open University and an ijaza in Hafs; but if such things are no guarantee that people won’t commit zina, then they are also no guarantee that someone will be careful or conscientious in what they report within an internet article. For me, from my perspective right here and now, the author remains “unknown” as to her reliability or trustworthiness (just as I am even more unknown to everyone else reading this). I neither believe nor disbelieve anything she says.

    Now let me talk about the author’s source: an unnamed random woman at Denny’s (that world famous source for reliable information about Islam and Muslims???) who casually introduces herself to the author as a “hooker” (really, who on earth does that to a complete stranger?) I assume the author is sitting at Denny’s in hijab or niqab (niqab by the looks of it from the photo), and in this era of rampant Islamophobia a non-Muslim woman starts talking to her and casually announces, right at the beginning of her conversation, that she is a criminal (unless this all takes place in certain areas of Nevada, I imagine), and then proceeds to start talking about the many “Moozlim” men who pay her for her time.

    Quick question: does the author or anyone else here realize that some bigoted non-Muslims, out of sheer contempt, like to play games with Muslims (perhaps when they are sitting out in public) by telling them lies that they think will shock or inconvenience them? Apparently not, since the author says “I didn’t see any reason why she should be lying to me”.

    I find it worrying that the author is so impressed that this random stranger announcing her criminal activities to a Muslim in public is informed about Muslims praying multiple times a day (as if this was not something that anyone with an internet connection can learn); and that she thinks her own inability to imagine why this stranger might be talking nonsense to her is a reason to trust the stranger.

    Here is a general guideline I try to follow: there are certain people who I know well, and my extensive personal interaction with them, or my study of their written work, shows me they are trustworthy; everyone else is “unknown” until proved otherwise.

    So let me check my isnad here: unknown (to me) author —> unknown non-Muslim stranger behaving weirdly —> stories about outwardly pious Muslim men committing zina. It looks like to me that I have to classify every detail reported in this article through this chain as DAIF: very, very weak.

    My goal is to exhibit a model of careful, critical thinking about alleged information we come across. If you find it useful, please imitate it and apply it to everything you read. May Allah forgive me if I have written anything inappropriate here, and may He make all Muslims think carefully and critically about what they read or hear, especially on the internet, or from random women claiming to be prostitutes they meet at Denny’s.

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  67. Student22

    Salaam.
    I think many of us are getting confused about the severity of Zina (adultery). “And do not go near adultery. Indeed it is an immorality and an evil way” 17:32

    Pornography is not adultery and the two do not always go hand in hand. It is however deviation from a command Allah subhanawataAllah has given to men. “Say to the believing men they shoulder lower their gaze and they should guard their chastity. That is purer for them. Indeed Allah is All Aware of what they do” 24:30.

    In my past, I had met some men who were studying in a “prestigious” Madrasa in Saudia Arabia, being taught by Imams of Mecca and Medina. These men came to visit the States, and were doing drugs. Yes. They had long beards, wore long dresses, and were doing hardcore drugs. I’m not talking weed here, I’m talking the other types. They also propositioned some Muslim female sisters to go back to their hotel with them. Ever since that day my perception of life had changed. I actually opened my eyes and began to question everyone and everything, except for our gift, The Quran, Allah subhanwataAllah’s words. These brothers could not use the Quran to explain their behavior, but they used every hadith in the book. The Quran is Truth and explains everything clearly. Allah says to us in the Quran that it explains everything clearly. If we commit Zina, we will be punished. Plain and simple. We can just hope for the best and ask for forgiveness constantly.

    I am not sure the punishments of pornography, but it is in no way permissible as the above ayat commands men to lower their gaze.

    How can we live in today’s society and stay away from these things that are blatantly put in our faces every day? One can say “run for the hills!”, but I believe one of the purposes of life is to overcome our desires and elevate to a level where self-control is natural and not a hard duty. Living in solitary in the hills is not necessarily the bravest way to deal with this issue. Face the issue and overcome it, don’t run and hide. That is not the way of our beloved Prophet Muhammad (saw) or the Prophets before him. They faced the issues at hand. If we keep Allah subhanawataAllah in our minds and hearts at every waking moment, with Good intentions, we can only go to the Light and not in Darkness.

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  68. Student22

    being raised in a Muslim household where parents discuss these issues is a plus. Many immigrant parents do not have these conversations. The new generation, however, are having these conversations with their teenagers, and I believe it does help.

    Porn before marriage is a sign that the person is sexually mature, and should be married as soon as possible, regardless of financial or school situations.

    As for Zina, both Muslim men and women commit it in the East and West. But, it will never be right, and nor should a spouse stay with their significant other if there is solid proof that he/she did commit Zina. I knew a couple who were attracted to each other and got married, and her husband cheated on her, then killed her for the other woman, because his wife wanted to work on the marriage and not get a divorce, yep.
    Divorce should be the option for Zina as there is a punishment ascribed in the Quran for the commiters of Zina. Advice for sisters out there, would a man stay with you if you cheated? NO! Most like NOT. SO why stay with him and “make it work” for the “kids sake” or whatever you tell yourselves at night to help you sleep. No. You deserve better!
    I could forgive a person for commiting Zina in our marriage once we were divorced and that person was out of my face, but I think if I stayed with that person it would be worst for both of us. Constant fighting and the reminder of the sin and pain it caused me. I do believe divorce followed by forgiveness would be the answer. I have not seen one marriage that was able to overcome Zina while together. But, I have seen people who had kids together who were happily divorced and had forgiven the other spouse completely. Just my opinion on that matter. Salaam

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  69. Student22

    If ones spouse catches the other watching porn, just talk about it. Be honest with one another. There is no better way to over come it. It is not a basis for divorce unless after trying to help the other repeatedly it is taking a toll on you. Tell your spouse the dangers of the porn industry, how young boys and girls are forced into it and it causes human trafficking. How would you feel if your brother mother sister was in porn? Tell your spouse it makes you feel inferior and undesirable or dirty. Be open and honesty and try to help them overcome it. Allah will bless you the more for it. Marriage is not a movie where your married now each of you are complete. No. It is to help each other grow and overcome issues like porn addiction. If one marries and their spouse has a fault, does Allah subhanawataAllah not say to overlook? Yes. Overlook and help them overcome. InshaAllah Kheir.

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  70. emma

    as a single, practicing muslimah, from this article, i get: if you are a practicing muslimah who hasnt gotten into all of this zina, porn, etc issue, then you might as well give up hope at all of ever marrying a righteous man, because there are none. any potential spouse that might look like he’s practicing, might actually be hiding a very disgusting sin that will of course affect your marriage, your spiritual growth, and your home. therefore, just face it and stay single or marry a practicing brother or one who is not, either one you choose, you will be throwing yourself off a cliff. good luck.

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