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What’s the Matter? Masturbation Addict

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Question:

Assalamu alaykum.
I want to ask this: will Allah pardon my sins even if I repeat it again and again after a tawbah? I also want to let you know that since the day I was born (as a Muslim) I was never interested in fully applying, practicing or studying Islam until 2011 when I really felt the emptiness in me, so I don’t really understands Islam YET. My situation is that I’ve been struggling to stop my masturbating addiction. Once I stopped for a week, then did it again. Feeling guilty, then I stopped again and did it once or twice in another week. I stayed like this for around 4 or 5 months since the day I decided to stop masturbating. I know that masturbating (self-sex, etc) is Haram/forbidden and has no good… I really, really wanted to stop, but it’s so hard! What I fear the most is the thought that Allah has locked my heart and put me way from the Right Path, sirat’l-mustaqim …


Answer:

Wa alaikomos salam wa rahmatullahi wa barakatu,

First, I would like to commend you for recognizing your shortcoming and seeking help.  It’s not easy to admit when you have a weakness –  it actually takes a lot of strength.  With the number of people writing in and asking about this same issue I want you to know that YOU ARE NOT ALONE.  Many people suffer silently due to their addiction to masturbation. The fact that you have been able to stop it for 4-5 months is very good progress masha’Allah.  In order to take control of this habit completely you need to make certain adjustments.

CREATE MOTIVATION TO CHANGE

Everything that you do is driven by one of 2 principles:  to seek pleasure or to avoid pain.  Therefore; you need to link as much pain as you can to the behavior that you want to end (masturbation).  Ask yourself what will it cost you as far your self-esteem, spirituality and self-control if you were to give in to your addiction?  How will it negatively affect your relationships either now or in the future?  How will you feel about yourself if you succumbed to your lust?  As you reflect on the answers to all these questions, you will start creating a negative association to the act.  The stronger the emotions, the more effective it will be.

Then, you need to create a lot of positive association to your desired goal:  stopping the masturbation.  Reflect on how you will feel about yourself if you constantly demonstrated self-control & self-leadership. How would you feel spiritually knowing that you are giving up your lust for the sake of Allah? How will your relationships enhance once you are no longer addicted?  As you reflect on all the benefits of stopping you will increase your self-control and motivation.

UNDERSTAND THE ADDICTION

On a physiological level the mind becomes easily addicted to the epinephrine (Adrenaline) and serotonin that is released during sexual arousal and orgasm that it is as addictive as heroine.  With each act the addiction becomes stronger and stronger until masturbation is not only as a means of satisfying sexual curiosity, but also as an out let for other emotions such as boredom, anxiety, fear and loneliness.   This is when it can totally take over your life since it becomes your first line of defense in alleviating negative emotions.  It’s important to realize that the strong craving that you have, like many other physiological impulses, are shaped like a bell curve.  You need to learn to ride out the craving because it is not going to last forever.  If you wait long enough the craving will go away and you will gain control over your impulses.  This is easier said than done, but with enough persistence & positive conditioning it is possible.

Practical Advice

  1. Avoid loneliness & boredom
  2. Keep yourself busy
  3. Stay proactive by volunteering your time
  4. Exert your energy through exercise
  5. Seek the company of righteous friends that can be a positive influence on you and your iman.
  6. Put a content filter on your computer with a complicated override password that you have to look up (or have your friend set the password)  and have the history of your searches sent to a trusted, respected friend who can support you through accountability.
  7. Avoid watching or listening to anything sexual
  8. Pray to Allah to strengthen you

Spiritual strength

Know that regardless of the mistakes you make the door of repentance is always open and Allah is all Forgiving.  The fact that you are striving to improve yourself is admirable and Allah not only sees your struggle but rewards you each time you control your impulses. Think the best of Allah and be sure that He would not seal your heart when you are striving to be better.  Strengthen your bond with Allah by praying  and asking Him to remove this addiction and help you to overcome your weakness.  I pray that you can keep your new commitment to Allah knowing that He will not abandon you just because you get weak from time to time.

If you have a question for our counselors, please submit here.

Haleh Banani has a Master degree in Clinical Psychology with 20 years of experience working with couples and individuals. She was a featured expert on Al-Jazeera international, Huda TV, Islamic Open University, Mercy Mission and Bayinnah TV. Haleh is an instructor for Ilmflix and Qalam Institute. She is an international speaker and writer.

106 Comments

106 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Koshur_Muslim

    January 30, 2014 at 6:32 AM

    Wow Haleh Banani, a woman answering about “self-pleasure” by a man lol, are you even aware of human biology and male carnal desires, do you even know how old the asker is?so how can you give advice, when you don’t even know what it’s like to be a young single male with raging hormones in a sexually charged society, and you haven’t even cited any verse in the Quran that forbids it, it’s just that you assumed “touching yourself=zina” hence it’s “haraam”.

    Using examples from “back in the time”, is irrelevant and ignorant because back in the 7th century and even up until a few decades ago, people used to get married as soon as they hit puberty, they didn’t need to wait that long to get married unlike people of my generation, where legally can’t get married until 18 and parents don’t wan their sons to get married until their late 20s, unfortunately Salafists never think about present times or how much our world has changed, 7th century Arabia was even more sexually liberal than Muslims of our times, with their multiple wives,multiple concubines, and they start at age 12.

    So my advice to the asker would be, watching porn and masturbating isn’t haraam if you look at the current circumstances of the world, the last people you would want to take advice from would be Salafist women, who wouldn’t be happy until all men are castrated and we no longer hold carnal desires, they don’t want us to be human.

    Every time I see a mullah give “advice” about such things, especially female mullahs, it makes me cringe because of their sheer ignorance and repulsiveness of anything related to carnal desires.

    • Avatar

      Young Muslim Male

      January 30, 2014 at 8:37 AM

      ^I’m a young Muslim male and I believe your comment is extremely bogus and irrelevant. You accuse the author for not using Qur’anic verses while you yourself make such a big verdict and ruling (that I have never heard from any scholar in my life). What your suggesting is complete utter nonsense, porn and masturbation kills people from the inside. Check yourself before you wreck yourself. #SincereAdvice

      • Avatar

        Koshur_Muslim

        January 30, 2014 at 6:34 PM

        do you have an alternative?or are you already married to your under-age cousin in the middle east, so you don’t really know the struggle.

      • Avatar

        The Questioner

        March 26, 2014 at 10:11 AM

        Assalamuaalaikuum.. I’m the one who ask this Question..
        alhamdulillah it really helps me to get through the situation i have…

        Keep up the good work, Sister/Ukh Haleh Banani. Of course it is okay to help “male problems” even tho You’re a woman. It’s about what was said not who said, what you know not who knows, I believe so.

        Thank you so much for the response. May Allah guide all of us to the good, Aameen :)

    • Hena Zuberi

      Hena Zuberi

      January 30, 2014 at 2:51 PM

      This is Sr. Haleh’s response to Koshur_Muslim’s comment (she will be on here to respond to any comments soon inshaAllah, we are having a little tech issue):

      “Being a behavioral therapist for the past 15 years and working with clients – both male and female – has given me the experience in helping people change their behavior. I have had numerous of men with this same addiction who were able to take control using these very techniques that you ridicule. One client used to watch porn & masturbate over 5 hours a day and through therapy he reduced it to only once a month. There is a psychological aspect to any addiction which can be overcome with the proper guidance & motivation. I did not pass any Islamic verdict on the act because I don’t have the qualifications to give any form of fatwa.

      Before you start promoting these acts look at what experts & researchers say about excessive porn & masturbation:

      http://yourbrainonporn.com/effects-of-porn-on-the-user

      http://www.sexualrecovery.com/articles/understanding-compulsive-masturbation.php

      Realize that the questioner is asking for help to stop a behavior. I am not enforcing this change- I am simply giving him the tools to overcome what HE FEELS is a lack of control & feelings of guilt

      For the record there is nothing wrong with carnal desires – it’s actually healthy and fulfilling if it is within the right boundaries of marriage. Non-Muslim marriage experts & psychologists discourage porn & masturbation for how it negatively affects the self-esteem along with future marital relationship so it’s not exclusively a Muslim opinion.”

      • Avatar

        Koshur_Muslim

        January 30, 2014 at 6:28 PM

        The therapist in this blog didn’t mention addiction to porn, she was implying that watching porn in general is “haraam”.

        If somebody has an addiction, then it’s really bad and they should seek help, however the “therapist” in this blog was telling the asker that he was “sinning”!

      • Avatar

        Koshur_Muslim

        January 30, 2014 at 6:31 PM

        I don’t promote these acts, but I promote humanity, and having carnal desires is human.

        • Avatar

          Aly Balagamwala | DiscoMaulvi

          January 31, 2014 at 4:20 AM

          Dear Koshur_Muslim

          Carnal desire is human and halal. Fulfilling that desire in an avenue that is not allowed is haram. Porn is watching men/women with their entire awrah exposed, possibly engaging in acts of a sexual nature. How do you deem that as halal?

          Regards
          Aly
          *Comment above is posted in a personal capacity and may not reflect the official views of MuslimMatters or its staff*

        • Avatar

          Aly Balagamwala | DiscoMaulvi

          January 31, 2014 at 5:10 AM

          Masturbation can be a tough habit to kick, especially if one is engaging in it multiple times a day or even week. Having worked with young men in a mentorship role, I have advised a couple to overcome this habit over the years. According to them this helped.

          In those days computers had almost replaced print as the medium of choice and my advise was to keep it always in a public place but now with technology becoming so mobile that is no longer an option.

          Sister Haleh’s list of practical advice is on the spot. I just wanted to add another suggestion I made to them:

          Every time you feel the urge, get up and start walking while making any type of zikr. Chances are initially your nafs and Shaytan will be on you full time to try steer you back to “fulfilling your needs”. You will give in and masturbate. After you purify yourself pray two rakat of nafl and ask Allah for repentance and the will to fight the urge.

          Keep doing this and slowly you will in sha Allah start feeling embarrassed to stand in front of Allah yet again. It will reduce in frequency and then instead of just doing zikr at the time of urge, make wudu and pray the two rakat nafl. Standing in front of Allah in prayer will kill the urge.

          Like any “addiction” it will be hard and even after a while you will feel the urge. The more you fight the stronger you will get in sha Allah.

          May Allah help all of us fight our addictions and vices.

          Best Regards
          Aly

          • Avatar

            Aly Balagamwala | DiscoMaulvi

            January 31, 2014 at 5:11 AM

            Oh and get married … you will have a halal outlet for your desires in sha Allah.

          • Avatar

            Koshur_Muslim

            January 31, 2014 at 2:33 PM

            Male carnal desires are at it’s peak in our teenage years, it’s illegal for somebody under 18 to get married, and like I said above most Muslim guys(under pressure from parents and personal reasons) don’t get married until their late 20s/early 30s, when their financially independent and can provide for a family.

            How will you tell a 16 year old kid not to masturbate?There isn’t an alternative, when in “back in the day” guys that old would already have a couple children.

            The problem with the “ummah” is that we don’t interpret the Quran into contemporary contexts and look at the circumstances that affect the Muslims of today, of this generation, that don’t have access to those “halal outlets”.

          • Avatar

            Aly Balagamwala | DiscoMaulvi

            February 1, 2014 at 12:15 PM

            Sahih Bukhari Volume 7, Book 62, Number 4:

            Narrated ‘Abdullah:
            We were with the Prophet while we were young and had no wealth whatever. So Allah’s Apostle said, “O young people! Whoever among you can marry, should marry, because it helps him lower his gaze and guard his modesty (i.e. his private parts from committing illegal sexual intercourse etc.), and whoever is not able to marry, should fast, as fasting diminishes his sexual power.”

            So there is an alternate available Alhamdulillah for controlling your desire.

            And remember the Quran says:
            “But as for he who feared the position of his Lord and prevented the soul from [unlawful] inclination,Then indeed, Paradise will be [his] refuge.” (79:40-41)

          • Avatar

            ZAI

            February 1, 2014 at 6:10 PM

            Br. Aly,
            I think the hadith cited there referring to youth MUST be seen in
            the context Br. Koshur Muslim described: that of a society where young marriage was the norm. Therefore the Prophet was speaking to a particular group of poor young Muslims or a few others like people with deformities, etc. who were exceptions and whose proposals would not be accepted. Further, even for the vast majority of these folks the wait would be a short time until they made some money or even got help from the Prophet, other sahaba, bait ul maal, etc.

            This can not be applied to the youth of today. Their circumstances are completely different. It’s not like we’re just asking them to fast for a few years till they turn 18 or that the community is helping them get married. We’re asking them to wait until early twenties(if they’re lucky and family they’re proposing to is not money obsessed) or in many cases into mid or late twenties.

            In this environment especially it is absurd bro, to just tell them to fast. They are not even really “youth” at that point. Are they going to fast for a decade or 15 years? Again, this isn’t as MUCH of a problem for women because THEY can marry those older guys at age 19,20 or whatever.

            Perversions will be inevitable if these desires are totally suppressed. Isn’t that the same reason celibacy is haraam? What we are dealing here is much more like an extended if temporary celibacy rather than what youth during the prophets time dealt with. Again, remember you’re asking these men to avoid even masturbation for 10-15 years. Dude, these poor guys heads are gonna explode.

            Bro these kids have GOT to catch a break man. Status quo is not working. Either we need younger marriage and to convince Muslim parents not to put emphasis on wealth, a decent job that provides the basics should be enough,or something man. Banning everything and telling them to fast for like 10-15 years? Dude,that is so not gonna happen. Its fantasy.

          • Avatar

            Aly Balagamwala | DiscoMaulvi

            February 2, 2014 at 12:16 PM

            Bro these kids have GOT to catch a break man. Status quo is not working. Either we need younger marriage and to convince Muslim parents not to put emphasis on wealth, a decent job that provides the basics should be enough,or something man.

            You answered your own comment in this….

          • Avatar

            ZAI

            February 4, 2014 at 12:01 AM

            Br. Aly,
            What do you suggest they do until this ideal of girls/womens families or they themselves decide that men w/o degrees YET who show promise for the future and can provide basics now are good marriage material? Bro, you know in our cultures 99% of men will be laughed out of house if they went for khasgari without some college degree, or tons of money in the bank from inheritance or business…preferably professional degree. This has about as much chance as happening any time soon as the men deciding they don’t care about looks anymore. What should they do till then?

          • Avatar

            Aly Balagamwala | DiscoMaulvi

            February 4, 2014 at 12:23 AM

            “Allah does not charge a soul except [with that within] its capacity. It will have [the consequence of] what [good] it has gained, and it will bear [the consequence of] what [evil] it has earned. “Our Lord, do not impose blame upon us if we have forgotten or erred. Our Lord, and lay not upon us a burden like that which You laid upon those before us. Our Lord, and burden us not with that which we have no ability to bear. And pardon us; and forgive us; and have mercy upon us. You are our protector, so give us victory over the disbelieving people.” (2:286)

          • Avatar

            ZAI

            February 4, 2014 at 2:28 AM

            Br. Aly,
            The question is whether we are placing an undue burden on OURSELVES by making haraam what Allah did not. Various ayah about bani Israel making it hard on themselves through excessive detailing,questioning and nitpicking come to mind. The position of most Hanafi and Hanbali scholars is that it is makruh or permitted…So are we making it even harder for the youth in our community on top of the many restrictions and challenges they already face?

          • Avatar

            Aly Balagamwala | DiscoMaulvi

            February 8, 2014 at 1:58 AM

            But wouldn’t it be better to make the clearly halal (ie marriage) easier than making the doubtful (at best makruh) easier?

            Aly
            *Comment above is posted in a personal capacity and may not reflect the official views of MuslimMatters or its staff*

          • Avatar

            ZAI

            February 9, 2014 at 10:15 PM

            Yes brother, it would be better. But what are odds of parents, especially immigrant parents, accepting younger marriage where guy does not have a degree yet…just a job to get by and provide the basics and pay the bills? You are south asian brother, and you know how our communities…Afghan, Arab, Pakistani, Indian..whatever, are with this. What should these guys do until this change occurs? Judging by how slowly if ever things change among Muslims, there will be no change. Status quo goes on.

            I am taking my position out of mercy and pity for these young men…not because I think it’s a great activity to be encouraged and extolled. I would definitely warn them to engage in it as little as possible…to literally treat it like relieving themselves and then go back to life. I’d also warn them that doing it too frequently WILL lead to issues later like premature ejaculation and end up causing intimacy problems with unsatisfied wives when they do get married. I feel for them though man…again, unlike women who can atleast choose to marry the older guys, these guys do not have options. There is no choice or outlet for them whatsoever…and look what they are surrounded by, even in most Muslim nations nowadays. Have you seen Arab or Pakistani music channels lately?

          • Avatar

            Aly Balagamwala | DiscoMaulvi

            February 9, 2014 at 11:03 PM

            I get your drift, and yes it is a problem of utmost importance to change the culture. I know the environment in Pakistan as I live there and our youth is increasingly attracted by the western concepts of “freedom” and free mingling and values are starting to erode.

            You are correct about excessive masturbation causing problems as I know of people who have confided their need to continue masturbation as they are unable to either get the same satisfaction through sex or are unable to get enough as they are used to a high frequency of “release” that practically married life with kids and jobs etc does not allow.

            I see some practicing families starting a trend to encourage early marriage but again it is not widespread and the opposite is happening for the general populace. It is indeed a big fitna and a topic for scholars to look into.

            WasSalamuAlaikum
            Aly

            *Comment above is posted in a personal capacity and may not reflect the official views of MuslimMatters or its staff*

          • Avatar

            Mahmud

            February 9, 2014 at 11:54 PM

            Assalamualaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh

            Those strange, weird moments where I happen to wholeheartedly agree with Zai because of principles…….

            “Br. Aly,
            The question is whether we are placing an undue burden on OURSELVES by making haraam what Allah did not. Various ayah about bani Israel making it hard on themselves through excessive detailing,questioning and nitpicking come to mind. The position of most Hanafi and Hanbali scholars is that it is makruh or permitted…So are we making it even harder for the youth in our community on top of the many restrictions and challenges they already face?”

            Even I don’t declare it halal or haram and it’s something I don’t practice.

            I say, some said it was halal, others said it was haram, and others said it was in the middle. What Allah and His Messenger have said suffices.

            Ibn Majah reported that Salman said that Allah’s Messenger was asked about butter, cheese and fur. He said:

            «الْحَلَالُ مَا أَحَلَّ اللهُ فِي كِتَابِهِ، وَالْحَرَامُ مَا حَرَّمَ اللهُ فِي كِتَابِهِ، وَمَا سَكَتَ عَنْهُ فَهُوَ مِمَّا عَفَا عَنْه»

            The allowed is what Allah has allowed in His Book and the prohibited is what Allah has prohibited in His Book. What He has not mentioned is a part of what He has pardoned.

            Of course, what Allah’s Messenger has prohibited is like what Allah aza wa jal prohibited and those who claim to follow the Quran only are in fact disbelievers!!! So let no one misunderstand the above hadith……

            Furtheremore,

            يأَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ لاَ تَسْأَلُواْ عَنْ أَشْيَآءَ إِن تُبْدَ لَكُمْ تَسُؤْكُمْ

            O you who believe! Ask not about things which, if made plain to you, may cause you trouble.

            Imam Ahmad recorded that `Ali said, “When this Ayah was revealed,

            وَللَّهِ عَلَى النَّاسِ حِجُّ الْبَيْتِ مَنِ اسْتَطَـعَ إِلَيْهِ سَبِيلاً

            And Hajj to the House is a duty that mankind owes to Allah, those who can bear the journey(3:97) they asked, `O Allah’s Messenger! Is it required every year’ He did not answer them, and they asked again, `Is it every year’ He still did not answer them, so they asked, `Is it every year’ He said,

            «لَا، وَلَوْ قُلْتُ: نَعَمْ لَوَجَبَتْ وَلَوْ وَجَبَتْ لَمَا اسْتَطَعْتُم»

            No, and had I said `yes’, it would have become obligated, and had it become obligated, you would not be able to bear it. Allah sent down,

            يأَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ لاَ تَسْأَلُواْ عَنْ أَشْيَآءَ إِن تُبْدَ لَكُمْ تَسُؤْكُمْ

            O you who believe! Ask not about things which, if made plain to you, may cause you trouble.” At-Tirmidhi and Ibn Majah also recorded this Hadith.

            From Ibn Kathir:

            A Hadith states,

            «أَعْظَمُ الْمُسْلِمِينَ جُرْمًا مَنْ سَأَلَ عَنْ شَيْءٍ لَمْ يُحَرَّمْ، فَحُرِّمَ مِنْ أَجْلِ مَسْأَلَتِه»

            (The worst criminal among the Muslims is he who asks if a matter is unlawful (or not), and it becomes unlawful because of his asking about it.)

            It is recorded in the Sahih that the Messenger of Allah said,

            «ذَرُونِي مَا تَرَكْتُكُمْ، فَإِنَّمَا أَهْلَكَ مَنْ كَانَ قَبْلَكُمْ كَثْرَةُ سُؤَالِهِمْ وَاخْتِلَافُهُمْ عَلَى أَنْبِيَائِهِم»

            Leave me as I have left you, those before you were destroyed because of many questions and disputing with their Prophets.
            An authentic Hadith also states,

            «أَنَّ اللهَ تَعَالَى فَرَضَ فَرَائِضَ فَلَا تُضَيِّعُوهَا، وَحَدَّ حُدُودًا فَلَا تَعْتَدُوهَا، وَحَرَّمَ أَشْيَاءَ فَلَا تَنْتَهِكُوهَا، وَسَكَتَ عَنْ أَشْيَاءَ رَحْمَةً بِكُمْ غَيْرَ نِسْيَانٍ فَلَا تَسْأَلُوا عَنْهَا»

            Allah, the Most Honored, has ordained some obligations, so do not ignore them; has set some limits, so do not trespass them; has prohibited some things, so do not commit them; and has left some things without rulings, out of mercy for you, not that He forgot them, so do not ask about them.

            http://www.qtafsir.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=731&Itemid=60

            So, some say it’s halal, others say it is haram, others say it is somewhere in the middle. I say-whatever Allah and His Messenger have said suffices us and-

            An Nawwas ibn Sam’an, reported that the Messenger of Allah said:

            “Al-Bir (piety and righteousness) entails good conduct, while Al-Ithm (evil) is that which crosses your mind and which you hate for people to find out about”

            Also, Wabisah ibn Ma’bad said: “I came to the Messenger of Allah , who then said:

            “You came to ask about Al-Bir?’ I said “Yes.” He said. “Seek the answer in your heart! Al- Bir is that which your inner self feels good about, and that which your heart feels good about. Al-Ithm is that (evil thought) which crosses your mind and which is persistent (as being evil) in your inner-self, even if the people give you a Fatawa, time and again allowing what you feel unease about”

            And let the issue end!

    • Avatar

      Habeeb

      March 11, 2015 at 7:10 AM

      it is the Satan that made you tkink like that…..masturbation is haram and prohibited in Islam.

    • Avatar

      Sara Moasic

      February 9, 2016 at 6:20 PM

      k, this kid is obviously some dumbass tryna troll this place, for any new person here, tbh, personally I wouldn’t say masturbation is haraam because I have never seen proof like this guy said (that’s not to say that I commend the action either) but the view on watching porn is COMPLETELY unfounded.

      You are supposed to guard your gaze, lookit up I don’t remember who said it exactly but, I think it was Ali (ra) with the Prophet (saw) who were walking and Ali glances at a woman, looks away, then glances again. The Prophet (saw) tells him, that first glance you were not accountable for, but the second one you were. Yeah obviously humans have natural desires and we are definitely not punished for them (like the first glance). That’s TOTALLY besides the point of this article though, and the lady does not deny these basic and undeniable human needs WHATSOEVER in her advice, rather she shows a way to deal with those “carnal desires” which not only doesn’t (at least from what I saw) contradict any Islamic teachings, but seems to be supported by some (like how he should not have taken that second glance).
      Islam teaches us to submit to the commandments of Allah, that is basically the point of life, so if it is made known that one is to lower their gaze from the opposite sex WHILE THEY ARE CLOTHED, how in the hell could you POSSIBLY begin to even think to excuse porn as being something that is okay to watch…? Watching basic porn is proven to be wrong with only this proof (and there’s probably others I don’t know/can’t remember rn), and it seems that generally people tend to move onto more disturbing genres like rape porn which is wrong on so many levels. The only person who would come up with an argument in defense of porn-watching is someone who is more or less devoid of Islamic knowledge besides the snippets heard here and there, many, if not all, of which were probably not checked as to their authenticity or if it’s even knowledge from Islam at all and not just some cultural or media quip. And said person who is devoid of knowledge should hold their tongue from passing judgement or advice until they have knowledge.

      Point is Mr. Koshur_Muslim, I don’t know if you’re tryna troll or if you really are just ignorant of the situation. If you’re being a troll, come on buddy, about time to give this stuff up and get a life, and if you really believe in what you’re saying, then I advise you two things:
      1. Rethink your beliefs and research them, find out if this is really based in Islam or if it’s just something you say in order to defend your actions. If you truly believe this and consider yourself a muslim, know that you are wrong in some aspects. If you are genuine in your belief that you are a muslim and that you want to practice Islam correctly, I want you to know that I love you for the sake of Allah and I ask Allah guide you (and anyone else reading this) to the right mindset. I understand where you are coming from, humans are not perfect and we are not expected to be perfect in Islam, in fact it is explicitly stated that if we were perfect, we would have been replaced by others who are not perfect, who make mistakes and then ask for forgiveness for those mistakes. Allah loves us, He is Ar-Rahman, Ar-Raheem, Ar-Rauf, Al-Wadud. He loves when we turn back to Him in repentance, He is At-Tawaab, He is both al-Ghafoor and al-Ghaffaar. He is the one who pardoned the man who killed one hundred people because of an intention, He is the one who says (in ayah 53 of az-Zumar; paraphrased by me) “Say to my slaves who have transgressed beyond their bounds, do not despair in the Mercy of Allah, Verily Allah forgives sins in groups…” the ayah Ali (ra) said is the most encompassing verse of Allah, that Ibn Mas3ud said This’s the most easing verse in the Quran, that Ash-shawkaani said Thiss the most hopeful verse in the quran, and I think others have said similar things; why? Because it’s mentioning Allahs mercy, not to the infallible angels who are completely obedient and do not make mistakes but to those who have commited sins, and not just any sins, sinners with utmost crimes who’ve transgressed beyond their boundaries, committed evil deeds, evil sins, despair not in the Mercy of Allah, Allah forgives all sins. He is the one who forgives over and over and over AND OVER again, if you do a sin go back to Allah, it doesn’t matter if you do the sin 1 time 10 times 100 times 1,000,000 times, always turn back to Allah in repentance and do not despair in His Mercy. If a sahaba does a double take at a woman in the presence of the Prophet (saw), one can only imagine what the people are doing today who may not be in the best of environments or surrounded by the best of people, and I would rather not let my imagination run free on that subject. I don’t know your situation exactly of course and I don’t want to sound like some condescending self-righteous holier-than-thou preacher, but at risk of sounding like one, I’m going to say don’t feel bad if you have a problem with any sort of addiction. Different people deal with different difficulties, do not feel any less of a person if you are fighting what you know to be wrong, everyone has their own unique battles to fight and it may be that you get a higher reward than one who does not have to struggle with what you struggle with. If you give up something for the sake of Allah, He will replace it with something much better. A good start to getting free of any sort of addiction is to start gathering knowledge on Islam itself (which would help you in much more than just quitting some addiction) and to make du’a (I don’t want to make this any longer than it already is, but many neglect du’a and it is absolutely essential to getting what you want in this life and the next) and istighfaar (for whatever wrong you have done, and we’ve all done something we’e not proud of). Regret the past and move on, do not wallow and say “oh what a terrible person I am,” struggle for the sake of Allah. To change start with making du’a and istighfaar and start reading Quran, getting to know the seerah of our Prophet (saw), and finding out about Usool ath-thalaath (the three fundamental principals).

      2. If you don’t have knowledge on a subject, don’t be so accusatory towards those you are arguing against. It will generally make you out to sound a bit foolish and makes you look like a troll. Don’t feel bad if you don’t know something, but if you disagree with someone and want to comment, be respectful when the situation calls for respect.

      Yeah, so in conclusion to my super-long-answer-whoops-didn’t-mean-to-go-on-like-that-but-ya-,-whatevs; to you mister kosher muslim I would say don’t speak without knowledge and try and brush up on some of the core beliefs of your religion, and to you or anyone else struggling against masturbation or any other addiction, make du’a and do not give up hope (which is actually a sin!), don’t be too hard on yourself, Allah is the most merciful, He loves when you turn back to him often and ask for forgiveness (and to repent you gotta make a mistake first), and from what I understand/have experienced, getting more in-depth knowledge on your religion will help shape you to be the person you should be. Learn His names and try to understand them, a heart that truly knows the meaning of Allah could never belittle a sin, learn about the life of your Prophet (saw), set your tawhid, your aqeedah right, and get to know your book. That’s probably the best advice I could give anyone; make du’a and istighfaar, and do your part by gathering knowledge, WAllahu a3lam to all I’ve said and obv if you’ve found a reputable source disproving what I’ve said, go with the reputable source, and anything good I’ve said is from Allah and anything bad I’ve said is from shaitan and/or myself. May Allah guide all those reading this, may He strengthen and make firm our hearts on the right path, may Allah have mercy on us so that we may achieve what we seek and what is good for us and keep us away from evil, may He bless our efforts and make us find the best places to learn from, may He make us die in the highest state of our Iman and elevate you and me to the highest places in jannah. Aaaaameen.

    • Avatar

      Friendly neighbor

      December 29, 2016 at 12:07 PM

      Friend, before you or I speak, it is an absolute rule that we ask if Allah would be pleased by the language we use. Would the Prophet (pbuh) approve of the way I conveyed my message?

  2. Avatar

    Parvez Khan

    January 30, 2014 at 11:09 AM

    @ koshur

    i am quite surprised by your comment and you rejecting a sincere advice. You yourself did not use any verse from the Quran neither prophetic hadith to back up your strange opinion that watching porn is not haram!!

    What happened to your understanding of the verse;

    “Tell the believing men to restrict their vision and guard their private parts. That is purer for them. Indeed, Allah is Acquainted with what they do.” [Quran Surah Nur verse 30]

    Also you critisised the advice of a Muslima on such topics, then what abt the following athar;

    Abu Musa (RA) said: I got up (and went) to ‘A’isha (RA) and sought her permission and it was granted, and I said to her: 0 Mother, or Mother of the Faithful, I want to ask you about a matter on which I feel shy. She said: Don’t feel shy of asking me about a thing which you can ask your mother, who gave you birth, for I am too your mother. Upon this I said: What makes a bath obligatory for a person? She replied: You have come across one well informed! The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said: When anyone sits amidst four parts (of the woman) and the circumcised parts touch each other a bath becomes obligatory. ” [sahih muslim]

    I understand that this issue is difficult thats why the Prophet (saw) adviced us to fast, guard our faculties and to keep good company.

    Allah (swt) will not burden us beyond what we can tolerate as implied in the last verse of Surah Al Baqarah

    • Avatar

      Koshur_Muslim

      January 30, 2014 at 6:40 PM

      Did you even understand what verse 30 of surah Noor means?It’s telling us to be modest and keep chaste, it doesn’t say anything about masturbation.

      • Avatar

        Parvez Khan

        January 31, 2014 at 11:48 AM

        i did not say anything about masturbation. i agree with abu hanifa’s position that its makru.

        but i am surprised that u considered porn as not haram!

        Prophetic teachings direct us to do dua, fast, keep good company, guard our faculties and keep busy in ibada whether its helping one’s parents or studying Islam.

        i hope that clarifies what i stated

    • Avatar

      Arbab Shazan

      January 31, 2014 at 5:25 AM

      Imam Malik R.A. & Imam Shafai R.A. consider masturbation an offense.

      According to Imam Abu Hanifa R.A, it could be performed in order to get escape from sin and Allah would forgive this act.

      Sheikh Yusuf Al-Qaradawi opinion same as Imam Abu Hanifa

      Imam Ahmad Ibn Hanbal regarded semen as an excretion of the body like other excrete and permitted its expulsion as blood letting is permitted. However, the Hanbali jurists permit masturbation only under two conditions: first, the fear of committing fornication or adultery, and second, not having the means to marry.

      Imam Ibn Hazm same as Imam Ahmad Ibn Hanbal.Hasan al-Basrī, ‘Amr ibn Dīnār, Ziyād Abū al-A‘lā and Mujāhid are also same as Imam Ibn Hazm.

      The above mentioned facts are only to indicate that there is not a consensus among scholars on the issue and so it is not very clear to declare it haram.

      My personal opinion is mastubation can only be allowed under the doctrine of

      “the lesser evil is to be suffered in order to fend off the major one”.

  3. Avatar

    Riz Khan

    January 30, 2014 at 12:01 PM

    It was amazing that the writer did not mention the option of marriage. The most effective solution to masturbation is marriage….simple. Anyhow I liked this article. The advices given in Practical Advice section are good.The most effective advice is practical advice No.4 . Yes exercise can help. join a gym and adopt a workout schedule of at least 45 minutes per day. The effects may not be evident in the beginning but with the passage of time your muscles would build up and your body would start to spend more and more calories. After six months of continued gym exercise you would have a beautiful healthy body and a controlled sex drive. The reason is that the improved muscles tend to spend more and more energy (calories) which helps in giving you a control on your sexual urges. The 8 tips given in Practical Advice section would certainly help someone who really want to improve.

    • Avatar

      Unhappy

      January 30, 2014 at 3:13 PM

      Marriage does not solve any masturbation or porn addiction. This is me talking, a wife of an addict. It makes one muslima’s life unhappy. I urge you not to get married until you get over the addiction.
      I wish I could have known about my husband’s addiction before the marriage. Now I don’t trust any one or anything. There are nights that I can’t sleep thinking about my kid’s future. Can’t go back, hard to move forward. What a sorrow!

      • Avatar

        Haleh Banani

        January 30, 2014 at 8:07 PM

        I’m sorry to hear that you are struggling as a wife with your husband’s addiction. I know how hard it must be – you must feel hurt, alienated and frustrated. It’s important to realize that it is nothing personal. Even if you do your best in every way a man with this type of addiction will still resort to masturbation. Try your best to dissociate him from his actions. He simply needs help. I understand that it’s troubling for you, but I want you to also be grateful that it’s only masturbation and not other forms of addiction. I have had many clients who cheat on their spouse or resort to getting prostitutes. Say Alhamdulillah that you don’t have to deal with these bigger issues and pray that your husband can overcome this weakness.

    • Avatar

      Haleh Banani

      January 30, 2014 at 7:51 PM

      Although marriage generally helps with the majority of people, unfortunately it doesn’t alleviate the problem if the person has an addiction. All the clients that I treated for masturbation addiction were married; therefore the addiction needs to be addressed first before marriage or else as you read one of the readers express the addiction will destroy the marriage.

      • Avatar

        Loving Dove

        February 12, 2014 at 2:09 AM

        Dear Sister Haleh, Assalam o alaikum, what if someone is going through excessive depression after a divorce and not being able to get married again as in our culture girls cant get married themselves even if they want to, they have to wait until some proposal comes or someone likes them and as in divorce case no one wants to marry a divorcee if she has a child also. what can someone do if unwantedly they adapt this bad habit. I personally was a person with Strong belifs and knew that this is wrong but adapted it due to someone’s influence but now its impossible to quit as whole day you can avoid it but later in night you are alone. Very disappointed, very guilty but still unable to help recover myself.

  4. Avatar

    AbdulAleem

    January 30, 2014 at 2:19 PM

    Assalamualaykum,

    I doubt marriage would resolve the issue that easily. Unfortunately, addiction to self-pleasure does not magically vanish into thin air due to marriage. I agree that there are many issues marriage will solve, however, in this instance, it would be more problematic. Umm Reem, in her articles, mentions stories of how porn and masturbation have seriously jeopardized marriages within the Muslim community.

    A few issues that arise are finding the spouse unattractive, unable to sustain pleasure for a period of time, and wishing for “variety.” Furthermore, this is a powerful addiction that resembles the same pull as heroin…it will not be that easy to forgo.

    MashaAllah, excellent advice sister Haleh. It truly is practical. InshaAllah, whoever follows it will be able to escape their deficits.

    I would like to add that I’ve heard of some brothers who had this problem, but were able to escape it by beseeching Allah in tahajjud for his help. If you have the ability, you should definitely attempt this bro.

  5. Avatar

    ZAI

    January 30, 2014 at 10:52 PM

    Some good points about sexual frustration due
    to delayed marriage and lack of alternative outlets for Muslim youth. Especially for men
    because they are more prone to having to wait longer due to financial readiness or
    some Muslims families seeking outright guarantees of wealthy careers.

    Frankly I’d apply the adage “If you make the allowed impermissible you make the impermissible inevitable” to this and talfiq is a mercy to the ummah. Ibn Hanbal’s position was that masturbation is permissible if there is no alternative and forbidden avenues (like porn in the modern day) aren’t used to aid it.

    I think this Hanbali position makes most sense and is most practical today, and
    in fact I think that it’s always been a better position than that of other schools where the equation of
    masturbation to sex outside of marriage has seemed like a weak argument to me. Of course
    like anything else it can get out of control and taken to an extreme, causing intimacy and addiction
    issues later in life.

    • Avatar

      Hussaini

      March 26, 2014 at 4:25 PM

      I understand when you say that its not the same for people today. Men dont get married until thier late twenties. Its difficult to restrain yourselves from such sins in this century. But it was exactly for such reasons that Allah promised that he would grant a greater reward to the Muslims of this era, who are able to avoid themselves from sins and do good deeds. It is indeed a difficult time and not the same as it was in the 7th century, but even the rewards are for avoiding sins are greater than they were in the 7th century.

  6. Avatar

    Siraaj

    January 31, 2014 at 1:26 AM

    Salaam alaykum sister Haleh,

    Can you explain the definition of what constitutes an addiction masturbation? I guess I’m a little unclear because the questioner calls their problem an addiction but is that a clinical diagnosis? The questioner appears to be doing it one or two times a week without mention of other areas of life being compromised.

    On the religious question, I do follow that it’s prohibited and not makruh, but on the technical discussion of where the questioner’s behavior falls, beyond a guilty conscience for not containing their physical desires, where is the line drawn between casual vs addiction?

    Siraaj

    • Avatar

      Haleh Banani

      January 31, 2014 at 12:34 PM

      WA alaikomos salam,
      You bring up an important point. From a psychological perspective it’s not an addiction unless it interferes with your daily life as you said. However; it sounds like the brother was addicted in the past and has overcome most of his addiction and now just feels remorse and fear for falling into the same trap. I addressed it as an addiction since so many people suffer from it. Thank you for your clarification.

      Haleh

  7. Avatar

    NoFap

    January 31, 2014 at 6:04 AM

    Visit this site regularly: http://www.reddit.com/r/NoFap
    Read what people write (ignore the haram things).
    I guarantee(!) you this site will help you alot!
    Save it as your bookmark!

  8. Avatar

    Sammy

    January 31, 2014 at 9:51 AM

    For Muslim’s struggling with pornography/masturbation/sex addictions, regardless of how often you access dirty material or “act out” with yourself, there’s a program for us that has been running for a few years now and Alhamdulillah has helped bring both brothers and sisters onto the road to recovery. No guilt tripping and not filled with information condemning you and telling you to just have more faith (Taqwa). It’s the Purify Your Gaze program by Zeyad Ramadan.

    Check it out and try it. It doesn’t matter how “practicing” or religious you are, an addiction and these habits occur to people regardless of their race, gender, ethnicity, or religion.

    This program will give you guidance to get on the road to recovery from the addiction and you’ll be in a community of recovering addicts as well who will help you and be there with and for you.

    Wishing all the best for addicts everywhere, and understanding for those who aren’t addicts.

    -Sammy

    • Avatar

      Mahmud

      January 31, 2014 at 3:23 PM

      Understandbly it’s an addiction, but we must be cautious of using terminology that makes it seem as if it’s like getting cancer. It’s a sin which brings severe consequences in this life and the next.

  9. Avatar

    Riz Khan

    January 31, 2014 at 12:12 PM

    let us discuss the medical side of masturbation.

    Prostate Cancer is a dangerous enemy of males. It is a really bad disease.

    A 2003 Australian study found that men who ejaculated more than five times a week were a third less likely to develop prostate cancer. Disease-causing toxins build up in your urogenital tract and when you rub one out, you flush the bad guys out of your system.

    so let us say a brother who is unmarried, then for him according to the above study it is better to masturbate.

    • Avatar

      Koshur_Muslim

      January 31, 2014 at 2:26 PM

      See it’s got health benefits too, and if you don’t masturbate for a like along time(like a week), you will definitely get a ‘wet dream'(a natural phenomena), would you rather ejaculate in your sleep or while you’re awake?The choice is yours.

    • Avatar

      Inqiyaad

      February 2, 2014 at 1:12 PM

      As salaamu ‘alaikum,
      Riz, an American study published in 2004 found no co-relation between ejaculation frequency and prostate cancer (JAMA. 2004; 291(13): 1578-1586). How do you feel about your conclusions now?

      In fact, the study you cite has several flaws including those of design and interpretation of results. For example, their conclusion that masturbatory practices are protective is not supported by their own description of the questionnaire that was used. They clearly state that, “The questionnaire focused on ejaculation irrespective of the context in which it occurred.” Their conclusions were based on unrestrained assumptions. This study is so flawed that even without collecting any data on infectious disease status the authors claimed that prostate cancer was unrelated to STDs. Nevertheless, popular media reported this study with further spin to promote these unfounded conclusions.

      The study itself and the media reports, both, were criticized in further comments published in the same journal (BJU International, 93 (1), page 180, January 2004, and BJU International, 93 (3), page 422, February 2004).

      The comment by Dr. Brody cites a study that differentiated between masturbation and conventional intercourse and found that it is the latter that is protective. Moreover, a review of several studies revealed that prostate cancer is associated with a lower frequency of conventional intercourse and a higher frequency of masturbation.

      • Avatar

        Riz Khan

        February 4, 2014 at 5:23 AM

        Brother Inqiyaad!
        The medical consensus is that masturbation is a medically healthy and psychologically normal habit. You can search all the internet on this topic. You would not be able to understand and recognize this medical consensus, If you would only look for the exceptions (a minority as presented above) .

        • Avatar

          ubaidullah

          February 4, 2014 at 10:00 PM

          Just as smoking was considered healthy during the 50’s and 60’s with “scientific backing”.

          I am not saying that what you say is incorrect- I would just say to be very very skeptical. After all, pornography is a massive industry; they would do whatever in their control to show masturbation/pornography in the best light.

          On the same note, many people now argue pornography is a healthy “outlet”. They also argue open relationships are normal. At some point, you have to ignore what everyone is saying and trust your fitrah.

        • Avatar

          Inqiyaad

          February 8, 2014 at 10:19 AM

          There is no medical consensus as you state. Instead of the internet, can you cite some peer reviewed articles?

        • Avatar

          Inqiyaad

          February 13, 2014 at 12:53 PM

          I cited the JAMA article to point out the correct approach to discussing data of this kind instead of the sensational approach the Australian authors adopted. For example, the authors acknowledge that these kind of studies do not establish a cause-effect relationship. To quote, “Mechanisms other than the link between androgenicity and ejaculation frequency should be evaluated as potential etiological factors underlying the inverse association between ejaculation frequency and prostate cancer.” Another aspect of the careful approach, one that you seem to have missed again, is the qualification these authors state forthrightly, “Thus, our exposure definition encompasses a wide range of variability in exposure to sexual activity.”

          I have commented on the other studies you have cited. However, for reasons I do not understand, they are being rejected. I hope they will be posted soon.

    • Avatar

      Mahmud

      February 2, 2014 at 6:40 PM

      Don’t I remember reading the opposite about masturbation? I’m very suspicious about this article.

    • Avatar

      Aly Balagamwala | DiscoMaulvi

      February 3, 2014 at 8:42 AM

      I remember reading a study that a glass of wine a day is good for the heart. Now would that make alcohol halal??

      *Comment above is posted in a personal capacity and may not reflect the official views of MuslimMatters or its staff*

      • Avatar

        Parvez Khan

        February 3, 2014 at 9:43 AM

        Salam Sheikh Aly.

        Yes you are definetly right abt submitting to Allah (swt) by following wht the Quran and sahih hadith clearly state.

        Then we aql, science and other aspects of usul.

        i did not want to argue again for i realised that too much debating hardens the heart. but i agree that the best solution is the prophetic teachings.

        peace

        • Avatar

          Aly Balagamwala | DiscoMaulvi

          February 4, 2014 at 12:50 AM

          WaAlaikum Assalam Parvez:

          I’m neither a Sheikh in terms of knowledge, nor age. :) It is a test of Allah that many youth fail. It is indeed necessary for parents to be open to their children who reach that age and educate them about the feelings they will experience at that point. I am still several years from that point where I have to face that parenting hurdle but I pray that when I reach it, I am blessed with the correct approach to educating my boys.

          WasSalamuAlaikum
          Aly

          *Comment above is posted in a personal capacity and may not reflect the official views of MuslimMatters or its staff*

          • Avatar

            p4rv3zkh4n

            February 5, 2014 at 12:10 PM

            Thank you for your reply Maulvi.

            i just want to know if a person will be punished for the act of self-pleasure?

            thank you.

          • Avatar

            Aly Balagamwala | DiscoMaulvi

            February 8, 2014 at 2:08 AM

            If we go by the masturbation is haram opinion then it would be punishable, if we go by the makruh opinion then it wouldn’t.

            And ultimately it is upto Allah (SWT) who will Forgive whom He Wills.

            This is my limited understanding of the issue.

            *Comment above is posted in a personal capacity and may not reflect the official views of MuslimMatters or its staff*

          • Avatar

            Parvez Khan

            February 23, 2014 at 3:18 PM

            Salam Maulvi Aly

            I wanted to ask if a person would be punished for having feelings for the opposite and having a constant thought of intimacy?
            also are there are signs for us to know if we are forgiven in this world?

            thank you

          • Avatar

            Aly Balagamwala | DiscoMaulvi

            February 23, 2014 at 9:49 PM

            WaAlaikum Assalam:

            You will have to ask a scholar as I am not qualified to answer this.

            Aly

          • Avatar

            Parvez Khan

            February 24, 2014 at 3:53 PM

            Salam Maulvi Aly.

            I’m too embarassed to ask a scholar directly about this so may i ask is thinking of women in an intimate way a minor or major sin ?

            thank you

          • Avatar

            Aly Balagamwala | DiscoMaulvi

            February 27, 2014 at 1:08 AM

            Dear Parvez Khan

            I understand your shyness and would advise you to submit the question to our “What’s the Matter” column by going to http://www.muslimmatters.org/ASK

            Best Regards
            Aly

      • Avatar

        ZAI

        February 3, 2014 at 11:54 PM

        Aly wrora,
        I don’t think that a good analogy, though I agree with your point about
        logical conlclusions. Khamr is explicitly haraam no matter what any medical study says, but
        masturbation is NOT haraam according to Hanafi and Hanbali positions.
        Must admit this is a legit khilaaf issue and neither side can say
        “halaal” or “haraam” as if it’s indisputable and set in stone…only as
        an opinion.

        • Avatar

          Aly Balagamwala | DiscoMaulvi

          February 4, 2014 at 12:26 AM

          Yes but they do not allow use of porn and other aids which is the deciding factor in making it haram. And frankly speaking there are very few kids out there who would just be masturbating using just physical stimulation and no “mental” stimulation.

          *Comment above is posted in a personal capacity and may not reflect the official views of MuslimMatters or its staff*

          • Avatar

            Aly Balagamwala | DiscoMaulvi

            February 4, 2014 at 1:14 AM

            I just would like to state that I am in no way suggesting that it is easy to not succumb to the feelings that arouse at that age. As I suggested I have had a little experience in counseling young men of that age and sometimes they are shy to approach their parents but if they build a rapport with an “elder brother” he is more likely to ask such questions that trouble him. We all have gone through that stage and most fail also may Allah forgive us for our shortcomings.

          • Avatar

            ZAI

            February 4, 2014 at 2:19 AM

            Br. Aly,
            No argument that porn is haraam.
            As for whether most men use it during masturbation, perhaps it is so…but not all and is still a legit khilaaf issue. You are entitled to your opinion and to choose to follow the opinion that seems most plausible to you. I’m simply pointing out that we cannot throw the baby out with the bathwater as it were in this case. Large portion of scholars do not consider it haraaam, unlike pornography…and it’s a valid opinion.

          • Avatar

            Aly Balagamwala | DiscoMaulvi

            February 8, 2014 at 1:56 AM

            I agree with you that masturbation without any porn (visual, auditory, or written) is a legitimate khilaaf issue. And for the handful that may do it without this stimulus we can argue it is not haraam but still disliked. But that would be a real small percentage of people.

            Aly
            *Comment above is posted in a personal capacity and may not reflect the official views of MuslimMatters or its staff*

  10. Avatar

    ibnmomin

    January 31, 2014 at 12:19 PM

    assalam u alaykum y’all,

    For those who understand urdu and want to take some advice on marital issues check this out: http://www.nakcollection.com/1/post/2014/01/advice-to-desis-nouman-ali-khan-urdu-lecture.html

    For those who wanna know what havoc pornography is creating: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=25GpteVMBX0

    • Avatar

      Mahmud

      January 31, 2014 at 3:25 PM

      wa alaykumusalam wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh

      He doesn’t just have Urdu lectures on marital problems, he has loads, likely more lectures on marital problems in English.

  11. Avatar

    The Undertaker

    January 31, 2014 at 12:47 PM

    I can’t believe that people are talking about masturbation as though it is some kind of disease.

    • Avatar

      Mahmud

      January 31, 2014 at 2:28 PM

      I know…what’s next…having affairs….are we going to treat “sex addiction” as some sort of a disease when in reality it’s a shameless thing which brings severe consequences in this life and the next.

      • Avatar

        Al Ghafur

        February 20, 2014 at 12:43 PM

        I wish I knew earlier or had researched for the side effects of overmasturbation. am at the age of 24 and have a penile size of a today born baby. am not joking here. I have wasted sperms that were meant to make babies. nw I am impotent. all I cry for is what life do I have left to live. what will I say on the day of judgement?

        • Avatar

          Question

          June 27, 2019 at 4:35 PM

          What do you mean you are now impotent?….

    • Avatar

      Parvez Khan

      February 3, 2014 at 3:24 PM

      masturbation is a distraction and also its has negative impacts on one’s character.
      its makes a person weak spiritually.

      actually excessive maturbation can even have negative medical effects.

      thats why the best solution is fasting. fasting of all faculties (jihad).

      masturbation does not solve anything. lets not get decieved by our lusts.

  12. Avatar

    emma

    January 31, 2014 at 2:28 PM

    First of all, if a man is addicted to this type of thing or if they use the excuse well i cant get married, so i might as well….it will cause problems later on in marriage, and now this man is ruining not only his life but also some poor woman’s as well! these types of people get used to a certain type of satisfaction that is not the same as intimacy with one’s wife and it will lead to huge problems in all aspects of the marriage. like the saying goes if the intimacy is not good in a marriage, then it becomes 90% of the problem. so a brother needs to seriously think about getting help with this issue and read up on the negative medical side effects of this activity as well as the issues they will experience later on in marriage if they dont stop or try to stop.

  13. Avatar

    shahnaz

    January 31, 2014 at 4:40 PM

    I am doing psycho-therapeutic counseling and hypnotherapy courses these days and think this would also be a good way to get the subconscious mind to rid one’s urge/habit; through hypnotherapy one can learn and seek other pleasurable ways to occupy the mind and body!

  14. Avatar

    Riz Khan

    February 2, 2014 at 3:35 AM

    Brother Aly Balagamwala | DiscoMaulvi you cited and wrote
    Sahih Bukhari Volume 7, Book 62, Number 4:
    Narrated ‘Abdullah:
    We were with the Prophet while we were young and had no wealth whatever. So Allah’s Apostle said, “O young people! Whoever among you can marry, should marry, because it helps him lower his gaze and guard his modesty (i.e. his private parts from committing illegal sexual intercourse etc.), and whoever is not able to marry, should fast, as fasting diminishes his sexual power.”

    So there is an alternate available Alhamdulillah for controlling your desire.

    And remember the Quran says:
    “But as for he who feared the position of his Lord and prevented the soul from [unlawful] inclination,Then indeed, Paradise will be [his] refuge.” (79:40-41)

    But it seems to me that you overlooked the following the hadeeth from Sahih Bukhari
    Sahih al-Bukhari Book of Wedlock, Marriage (Nikaah) No.5076

    Narrated Abu Huraira:

    I said, “O Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ)! I am a young man and I am afraid that I may commit illegal sexual intercourse and I cannot afford to marry.” He kept silent, and then repeated my question once again, but he kept silent. I said the same (for the third time) and he remained silent. Then repeated my question (for the fourth time), and only then the Prophet said, “O Abu Huraira! The pen has dried after writing what you are going to confront. So (it does not matter whether you) get yourself castrated or not.”
    The explanation (given in the original version or full version) is that Hadrath Abu Huraira (Radi Allah Taala Anhu) used to fast a lot but his (Radi Allah Taala Anhu) Sexual desires/urges were not controlled.Therefore the Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) did not advised him to fast in this hadeeth.

    It means that fasting can/may not work in each and every case.

    • Avatar

      Mahmud

      February 2, 2014 at 6:38 PM

      I’m grateful to the man who prevents himself from committing rape or zina because then he is only harming himself.

      Similarly, I’m grateful if some people drink alcohol instead of murder and steal.

      Likewise, I’m grateful if someone is Muslim, even though he may be a major sinner, instead of a kaffir.

      However, while I’m grateful for that, sin is still sin.

      Is masturbation haram? Some people say yes. Others say no. Others say the answer is in the middle.

      I say-there is Allah’s area between halal and haram we should stay away from.

      Furthermore,

      An Nawwas ibn Sam’an, reported that the Messenger of Allah said:

      “Al-Bir (piety and righteousness) entails good conduct, while Al-Ithm (evil) is that which crosses your mind and which you hate for people to find out about”

      Also, Wabisah ibn Ma’bad said: “I came to the Messenger of Allah , who then said:

      “You came to ask about Al-Bir?’ I said “Yes.” He said. “Seek the answer in your heart! Al- Bir is that which your inner self feels good about, and that which your heart feels good about. Al-Ithm is that (evil thought) which crosses your mind and which is persistent (as being evil) in your inner-self, even if the people give you a Fatawa, time and again allowing what you feel unease about”

      Ibn Hajar Al-Haytami said “This Hadith is among the Messenger’s unique speeches, and one of the richest in meaning. Al-Bir is a unique word that entails each and every act of righteousness and piety. As for Al-Ithm, it is also a unique word that entails each and every act of sin and evil, whether major or minor. This is why the Prophet gave a contrast between the two words, treating them as antonyms.”

      Literally, Al-Bir entails meanings of obedience and truthfulness, as stated in Lisan Al ‘Arab (Arabic Dictionary). The scholars have described Al-Bir as:”Al-Bir means to keep the relations, to be kind, to be grateful and to be kind with the friends and with one’s company that he keeps. It also means to obey; and all these attitudes and types of good behavior combined describe good conduct.”

      Also, Ibn ‘Hajar Al-Haytami said: “Al-Bir is a unique word that entails all acts of righteousness and good conduct”. This is the general definition that conforms with the Hadith related by An-Nawwas ibn Sam’an, in which the Prophet describes Al-Bir as, “good conduct” while in the Hadith by Wabisah, he defines it as, “that which your inner-self feels good about.”

      Al-Bir, therefore, is general in meaning, and it entails treating the creation, such as and especially the parents, with kindness. Also, Al-Bir entails each and every act of piety and righteousness. Allah azza wa jal said:

      “It is not Birr that you turn your faces towards the east and (or) west in prayers; but Al-Birr is the quality of one who believes in Allah, the Last Day, the Angels, the Book, the Prophets and gives his wealth, in spite of love for it, to the kinsfolk, to the orphans, and to the poor, and to the wayfarer, and to those who ask, and to set slaves free, performs As-Salat, and gives the Zakat, and who fulfill their covenant when they make it, and who are As-Sabirin (the Patient Ones) in extreme poverty and in ailment (disease) and at times of fighting (during battles). Such are the people of the truth and are Al-Muttaqun (The Pious).” 2 :177

      Sometimes, Al-Bir is coupled with the word Taqwa, such as:

      “Help you one another in Al-Birr and Taqwa; but do not help one another in sin and transgression.” 5:2

      In this case, Al-Birr means to treat people with kindness, while At-Taqwa means to obey Allah in what He has commanded and to refrain from what he has Prohibited. Furthermore, Al-Birr sometimes means, “To practice the obligations”, while at-Taqwa means, “To avoid the prohibitions.”

      We ask Allah aza wa jal for Birr and Taqwa and we take refuge in Him from coming near dangerous territory and all forms of ithm.

      • Avatar

        Riz Khan

        February 4, 2014 at 4:42 AM

        Brother Mehmud!
        There is a very strong Hanafi Position on the matter..which say it is permissible if a person fears that without masturbation he/she would commit zina.In fact under such circumstances masturbation becomes an obligation (wajib) according to hanafis…

        • Avatar

          Mahmud

          February 9, 2014 at 11:59 PM

          Read my very lengthy comment way above. I basically say, some people said this act was halal, others said it was haram and others said it was somewhere in between. I also mentioned a lot of ahadith on how we should not ask about these matters.

          However, for me, the book of Allah aza wa jal and the Sunnah, especially that hadith on birr and ithm above, are enough for me.

    • Avatar

      Aly Balagamwala | DiscoMaulvi

      February 3, 2014 at 8:45 AM

      Does this allow masturbation?

      *Comment above is posted in a personal capacity and may not reflect the official views of MuslimMatters or its staff*

      • Avatar

        Riz Khan

        February 4, 2014 at 3:27 AM

        Brother Aly Balagamwala | DiscoMaulvi!
        As far as my knowledge is concerned “Haram” (forbidden/prohibited) is something which is forbidden in Islam. While “Halal”(allowed) is something which is not “Haram”.

        So the question Does this allow masturbation? should be Deoes it forbid/prohibit masturbation?. Evidense is required for proving something “Haram”. If something is not “Haram” then automatically it is “Halal”.

        • Avatar

          Aly Balagamwala | DiscoMaulvi

          February 8, 2014 at 2:01 AM

          You and I are not qualified to declare it halal or haram. However, the ulema over years have ruled it haram or makruh (disliked).

          *Comment above is posted in a personal capacity and may not reflect the official views of MuslimMatters or its staff*

        • Avatar

          Inqiyaad

          February 8, 2014 at 9:27 AM

          It seems that it is clear to you that, in our current societal context, there is a blanket ban on sexual gratification except with spouses (Surah 23: 6). Anyone who seeks beyond this has been warned (Surah 23: 7). The strictly qualified tolerance for masturbation per some jurists is not intended as a means of instant gratification. Rather, it is a means of avoiding crimes for which hadd punishment is prescribed. Each individual is the best judge as to his/her situation. Instead of advertising for masturbation, you will do well to leave it to individuals to decide whether they will be able to explain this to Allah as means of avoiding greater crimes or a means of instant gratification.

          Whether one wants to indulge in instant gratification (Surah 79: 38-39), avoid instant gratification (Surah 79: 40-41), constantly expose oneself to temptations and struggle to meet bare minimum expectations, or trust Allah’s Forgiveness and Mercy and fear Him as He deserves to be feared and then aim for higher goals, is personal choice. The better choice is quite clear.

      • Avatar

        Riz Khan

        February 4, 2014 at 3:55 AM

        The sacred verse of The Holy Quran “who guard their private parts, except from the spouses or whom their right hand possess

  15. Avatar

    Riz Khan

    February 2, 2014 at 3:36 AM

    read advise instead of advised in the second last paragraph.

  16. Avatar

    Amir

    February 2, 2014 at 9:03 PM

    My recommendation is you should join “Purify Your Gaze” program. You have to spend a bit for this program but insyaallah, it’s worth the money.

  17. Avatar

    fatima

    February 2, 2014 at 11:28 PM

    assalamualaykum
    how do i submit questions in whats the matter. i am accessing your site thru my mobile n i cant find where to post.

  18. Avatar

    Riz Khan

    February 5, 2014 at 6:09 AM

    Brother ubaidullah!
    Nothing can be more anti-porn and anti-zina than a timely prophylactic masturbation for an unmarried brother. Of course excess is to be avoided.

    • Avatar

      Mahmud

      February 10, 2014 at 12:02 AM

      As a matter of fact, fasting is even better. Prolonged masturbation can induce the brother to want the real thing more and more.

      • Avatar

        Riz Khan

        February 13, 2014 at 12:52 PM

        Brother! Islam teach us to be moderate in our approach. Even excessive fasting can really harm your stomach and kidneys. A boy reaches puberty at 14 and in the current circumstances it would be hard for him to marry before he reaches 25. You expect him to fast for 10 or 11 years?. My opinion is based on a almost position of almost consensus among the scholars i.e. it is allowed under the doctrine of choosing the lesser evil. Such an unmarried person should resort to the methods mentioned in the article to control his sex drive but complete abstinence from masturbation may not be beneficial for him. He should masturbate according to his need may be weekly or bi weekly to relieve his sexual tension and avoid excessive addiction by using methods which are mentioned in the article. Some words for you to consider… just look at the rape statistics .. Saudi Arabian among the highest weighted rape rates…If the rapists had some sense and had avoided the sexual tension earlier on, many of the rapes would have been avoided.

        • Avatar

          Mahmud

          February 13, 2014 at 2:17 PM

          I don’t at all know what you mean by majority of scholars…..it seems that most considered it haram and some considered it ok to prevent a greater sin. So yes, if a person is about to rape, let him masturbate, but you seem to make it like it SHOULD be something that’s done, almost, encouraged by Islam……

          Which is by no means the case. Moderate fasting is enough to curb the urge enough for a person to restrain himself inshaa Allah, so no health problems are necessary….if masturbation was a solution, we would have had it from Allah and His Messenger and we don’t.

          Furthermore, by seeking the aid of Allah aza wa jal he can get married.

          If we take your logic further, we will find advocation for pre-marital sex as long as the couple is engaged and planning to get married…..

          And the slippery slope descends.

          I don’t even say the act is haram myself and I can seek that the line you are taking is extremely dangerous.

  19. Avatar

    Haris

    February 7, 2014 at 10:47 PM

    Where is the proof that masturbation is haram ? Need not a scholar’s opinion but evidence from Qura’n, Sunnah or Hadith. I do agree that its an issue and must be handled through counselling or sex education, neither of which our communities do well in.

    • Avatar

      p4rv3zkh4n

      February 8, 2014 at 1:27 PM

      Salam
      Actually there is no verse in the Quran or sahih hadith prohibiting masturbation.
      i’ve read some weak hadith on this topic but weak hadith cannot be used for Fiqh rulings.
      Strongest position is that masturbation is makru (discouraged).
      Best solution is from Quran and hadith; lower the gaze, fast, keep busy in ibadah or important activities, guard the faculties, avoid watching scenes that induce such feelings, keep doing dua and remember that such makru act is a trap of satan to weaken the soul and body.

    • Avatar

      Siraaj

      February 10, 2014 at 11:16 AM

      The evidence of those who state it is forbidden is that Allah (swt) tells what is permitted for us in terms of sexual behavior, and all other forms of sexual behavior is forbidden. Likewise, the Prophet (SAW) advised fasting for the one who did not have a means of sexual gratification rather than masturbation. For those who advocate that the Prophet (SAW) always chose the easier of two options, this is something to think about.

      • Avatar

        Fritz

        February 17, 2014 at 5:18 AM

        I do know that Shiekh Yaser Qadhi said that there is no harm in it. I personally think it probably is harmful (perhaps because it can lead to porn, zina etc) but the whole issue is puzzling as it is hard to find any detailed discussion on this issue. Obviously it shouldnt be a major source of contention but it would be intersting to knwo what the rest of the MM team think (perticularly the rationale behind it etc)?

  20. Avatar

    O H

    February 13, 2014 at 2:33 PM

    We as laymen and non-scholars have to rely upon the righteous scholars on all issues of religion and to see the reasons/conditions that have been cited as to why something has been deemed haram or makrooh. Just because some scholar says it is allowed doesn’t make it unconditionally permissible. We have to check the context and conditions that have been mentioned as to when it may become permissible in their opinion. Even in that case many scholars are on the opinion it is directly haram citing CH23V7 of the Qur’an. We as laymen have to know our limits in knowledge and issuance of fatawa.

  21. Avatar

    Inqiyaad

    February 17, 2014 at 4:13 AM

    Let us look at some statements from the first of the two studies you have cited here.

    “Feelings of guilt about masturbation are common.” “Masturbation makes potential study participants very uneasy, and polygraph tests have indicated that masturbation is one of the least accurately reported sexual behaviors.”

    An-Nawwas bin Sam’an (RAA) narrated, ‘I asked the Messenger of Allah (P.B.U.H.) about virtue and sin and he replied, “The essence of virtue is (manifested in) good morals (Akhlaq) whereas sinful conduct is that which turns in your heart (making you feel uncomfortable) and you dislike that it would be disclosed to other people.” Related by Muslim.

    “…research examining other common sexual activities, such as masturbation, is rare. We have yet to determine the influence of masturbation on early sexual development and on one’s capacity for healthy sexual relationships later in life.”

    “Evidence indicates that people who report masturbating actually report increased engagement with other sexual activities, including risky activities, such as having multiple partners.”

    More importantly, this study did not ask questions regarding the benefits of masturbation. Rather, it asked questions about perceptions about masturbation in a specific sub-population.

    *Posted by Comments Team on behalf of commenter due to some technical issues on his end*

    Quite frankly, this search for a scientific consensus is a distraction. What really matters is this behavior encouraged in Islam?

    Wa salaamu ‘alaikum

  22. Avatar

    Fighting addiction

    July 24, 2014 at 9:40 AM

    For other brothers stumbling on this addiction, a method I am following
    1. Create a new email address. Change its password to random characters which you do not remember. Copy this password and keep it on a notepad (in your PC) temporarily.
    2. Install a software like K9 which has many features which a tech-savvy individual would be able to set.
    3. Use the above new email as the user id for the blocking software and the random characters as the password.
    4. Delete the password from your notepad.
    5. Use a service like whensend.com which sends email on a future date. Send this random character password to your personal email address at a future date. This step will ensure that you can modify the K9 settings in the future if you want to.

    Better is skip step 5 and just delete the random character password. You will have no way of bypassing the filter software installed in your computer.

    Do this immediately after a session and your guilt is at the highest.
    In sha Allah, it will work. Do lots of duas. In my opinion, this is the modern day jihad.

  23. Avatar

    Stella Anton

    May 13, 2015 at 5:37 AM

    I am surprised that there doesn’t seem to be a single person here relieving this poor young man’s anxiety by letting him know that masturbation is totally normal, and actually beneficial. I’m not talking about masturbation to porn (I’ll get to that later on), just masturbation. Sure it can be addictive, but of all addictions, it’s probably the healthiest one. It releases feel-good hormones, relieves sexual and emotional tension that you definitely don’t want to suppress (to do so is both unhealthy and dangerous), and allows you to explore your sexuality so that you can show your future partner/wife/husband how to please you later on. Unless you masturbate so much and so compulsively that you neglect other areas of your life (like you don’t work or do your homework because you are in your bed masturbating, or you don’t get out to meet people because you are in your place masturbating for hours -which is even physiologically impossible, at least for males), there is no harm in masturbation. As for the “Unhappy” married Muslimah who commented above that she suffers from her husband’s masturbation, I don’t even understand what she means. Just because women and men get married, it doesn’t mean that any of them stops masturbating, it’s pleasurable, totally harmless, healthy thing to do. You could even do it together. It certainly makes both of you better lovers. If you don’t know how to satisfy yourselves, you most certainly can’t show your partner. Masturbation doesn’t make for an unhappy marriage, and it most certainly doesn’t compromise the kids’ future.

    Now, masturbation to porn is another story. Addiction to porn can be quite tricky -it has a definite effect on the socialization of a man/woman in a given culture, it has a definite effect on sexual interaction within marriage, and it does alter one’s sexuality. Especially in internet porn, because there is an endless supply of sexualized images (notice how I’m saying sexualized, not sexual), and no emotional connection or desire for a particular person, the viewer gets desensitized, and eventually need larger variety and novelty in order to be stimulated like before (to put it simply, they need constantly to view “new stuff”). Today’s mainstream internet pornography achieves novelty and variety by introducing more and more extreme and violent sex acts on the female porn performers -painful and often multiple vaginal and anal penetrations, abusive oral sex that causes the woman visible discomfort or vomit, verbally degrading communication, etc. Making love in contemporary porn has turned into making hate, and it reinforces a misogynistic and sexist culture where women are already disrespected anyway. While men often assume that they can tell the difference between reality and the “fantasy” of the porn world, there is significant research now showing that porn images do infiltrate their private lives, that they often cannot get satisfaction in their marriages and relationships unless they perform “porn sex” on their wives and girlfriends, or unless they masturbate to porn or bring images of porn to their mind while they have sex, or unless their partners groom themselves to imitate the appearance of a porn performer (shaved genitals, surgically enhanced breasts, etc). Porn has a particularly negative effect on men who did not have a sex life before they started watching it -young boys who discovered their sexuality with porn, and for whom porn was their sex education. This is dangerous, and I don’t mean morally or spiritually -because I am not Muslim and what is moral within mainstream Orthodox Islam is not my personal concern- but it is dangerous psychologically, socially, and for the own person’s sexuality. Hugging, cuddling and kissing -the most widely used acts of intimacy- are becoming increasingly absent in porn. Violence is instead sexualized in porn. Thrusting a penis inside a woman as if you want to smash her internal organs, and humiliating her, is presented in porn as sexual and pleasing for both parties. This has clearly very negative repercussions. Porn is a huge industry run mostly by a handful of corporations in US California (yes, thousands of porn sites, even supposedly “amateur porn”, does come down to them, and is run by them). These corporations do not care about making people’s sexual imagination and sexual lives better, they only care about making money -on the expense of anyone or anything. It is a huge shame for Western society that in the name of freedom of speech we have permitted a bunch of capitalists in California to shape the sexualities of young children -because the average age for boys first viewing porn today is 11 years.

    So, masturbating to porn? I agree, quit it. Disable porn sites from your computer if you have to. But you have no reason -and it is in fact very unhealthy and unadvisable for you- to stop masturbating altogether. You are not harming yourself or anyone else, and you are certainly not harming Allah, who gave you your sexuality to begin with.

  24. Avatar

    ayesha

    June 2, 2015 at 12:34 PM

    while applying these techniques given by sister Haleh do one thing more. after committing masturbation (or any other sin) recite meditation or do any tasbeh as much easily as u can and give some money to a needy person, stick with it ( recitation and paying money ) after doing it few times you will feel change in your attitude (your desire for committing that sin will reduce Insha Allah).

  25. Avatar

    confusedandlostbrother2387

    July 29, 2015 at 9:24 PM

    what about problems having to deal with the consequences when one has engaged in this disgusting practice in his youth and no longer is.

  26. Avatar

    confusedandlostbrother2387

    July 29, 2015 at 9:36 PM

    as a recovering adult i based on my own experiences know for a fact how it damages you possibly for the rest of your life. i have to reject proposals and wont get married as i wont be able to ever find intimacy with a real woman and cant explain to my parents why and even though i try to they go into denial ( i wouldn’t be able to get married when i was younger as “its not in our culture”) im pakistani by the way. it devastates your self esteem and as a grown man i cant help but cry as to what i have done to myself. As a kid i was advised by my family doctor that it is perfectly normal as it is still considered by many well educated doctors here even in pakistan. Please any young person who is reading this leave it. It has to much regret attached to it. for me i had to do it after learning the hard way.

  27. Avatar

    confusedandlostbrother2387

    July 30, 2015 at 7:34 PM

  28. Avatar

    laiba

    March 11, 2016 at 2:48 PM

    I’m having addiction of masturbating I came across porn when I was 10 in my uncles laptop I am also a disabled in a sense my left arm muscles are weak so I don’t think myself eligible for any life partner my parents are divorced my sister has died the one I loved left me alone my best friend left me my grades fell I faced failures I am depressed I am just 18 I feel lonely at nights I was so closed to my sister that I cry every night my family do love me but they have disputes with each other I get stressed by their everydays quarrel the day my dad left my mom she couldn’t stabilize herself mentally after that her daughter died in an accident I have good friends but they are never available I consider myself abandoned though I am positive that there must be some wisdom behind all my hardships but I really need counseling Ya Allah Save Me for I’m being worse with myself I want a cure I couldn’t be consistent after trying my best any help I don’t wanna expertise my personal life but these are the reasons for my instabilities

    • Avatar

      Struggle to success

      November 26, 2016 at 1:22 AM

      Labia,
      I am no counsellor and far from a scholar. …But from my humble opinion I would say that, maybe through all of this Allah wants you to truly depend and turn to him for help and comfort. Truly with Allah’s remembrances do our hearts find ease!! I too am facing some hardships in life and have no one (human) to turn to for comfort and support but knowing that Allah is all hearing and wise puts me at ease. I literally just sit there and talk and talk and talk knowing that the one that truly matters KNOWS EXACTLY what i am going through and really who else can help besides Allah? After the many tears and the release of all my emotions i feel great. Ready and determined to do my best in regards to my responsibilities and obligations. I guess my point is that even through your hardships and trials, if you keep the right perspective and attitude, you can be happy and at peace knowing that it is all by the permission of Allah and just do YOUR best. Thats it.

    • Avatar

      Struggle to success

      November 26, 2016 at 1:28 AM

      Also why in the world would you not be eligible for marriage because you have a disability?1 That’s not what matters. It’s your character and Deen. I would marry a man with a disability and I’m positive many, many , MANY women out there would! Don’t put yourself down brother! Allah created you like that!!!… appreciate it, respect it, LOVE IT!
      Okay rant over haha

  29. Avatar

    Nasir Uddin

    October 30, 2016 at 9:05 PM

    Assalamu alaikum, I have been addicted masturbation and pornography for some years now, but they both didn’t happen at the same time. It was one after another for me, so basically first I got addicted to masturbation when I was 13 years old and then later I got addicted to pornography when I was 15 years old, but I tried many times to stop from happening again like; reading a book or praying even still it is there inside my head. This made me become really depressed this year, where I emotionally upset and was seriously crying, because I really wanted to make a change and I never wanted to become like; someone who people would hate. I have lost a lot of weight in the past, because of this reason and still can’t change my life round when all you wanted to do was to study hard and get the good grades that you need and so I did back in college, but not at university. This first addiction happened when I left mosque and it was during the summer holidays and my mum told me not to do touch my private parts, because it was haram to do that, but I just mainly didn’t act upon it, so that this won’t keep on repeating itself.

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#Life

Bipolar Exiled: Oscillating between the Mind’s Terrain and Physical Boundaries

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By Farzande Jehan

 

“And what is the matter with you sister, you are not well either?”

She is speaking to me in Urdu. We are both Pathan. And now I am thinking of one universal ailment that I can supply this lady with and leave it at that. I say that I have depression. She looks at me puzzled, looks at the lady sitting next to her, searching her face for a clue but to no avail. Can I explain ‘depression’ to her? This is going to be difficult. Why don’t I..

“I have a mood disorder.”

Pakistanis use the word ‘mood’ and ‘moody’ all the time; she should know. As I wait for a response, the same blank expression on her face. No comprendo. Rescue her furzy, she is losing you.

“Okay, so sometimes I am very happy, bohth khush,” I raise my hand as high as possible, “And sometimes I am very sad, bohth khafa.” I bring my hand down low.

Ahhh!”

The thing’s been expressed in the right words.

To elaborate I say: “What I come here for…” -and there is newfound confidence in my voice too- “…is to make sure that it is leveled.”

This I demonstrate by slicing through the room with my theatrical hand. I resettle in my chair. I have successfully regained my right to be here. I am quiet not because I am rude, but because I need composure.


2009

I was 23, visibly Muslim, living in NYC, and just about ready to enter an adulthood promised to many of the youth of my time. I was a graduate student the year I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder, and had all but completed two of the courses that led to my degree. I owed many of life’s successes and some failures too -but more of the good- to my ex-commuter status. My family preferred that I live at home, so I’d take the D from Brooklyn and transfer to the 1 somewhere in Midtown (God help you on the weekends when maintenance reroutes).

The summer of my onset, two white passengers in an underground train whispered about the news of Michael Jackson’s death. The couple scheduled to get help from martinis to cope with their pain.

The isolation I experienced and the spiritual inclination I harbored from a young age worked as seamless elements in the pursuit of removing me from my reality… your reality. I lived in a place that was in extreme contrast to the ideals I cherished. New York did successfully provide the tools that accurately identified the whatnots so that the whats that mattered remained.

Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. How do you reconcile a reverence for a Deity that felt too far? My jugular vein reminded me of vessels and of things that hold quantity. Water indeed is life and Muslims agree that God is everywhere, so where do we draw the line? If I labored just enough, the distance that separated me from my Creator would shorten, I believed. The city that never sleeps left me sleepless.


A dirty curtain separated the men from the women. We were in the fourth season of the year and I start counting mine from Spring. My family returned to the go-back-to-your-country type of country in 2014, before Trump came to office and after Obama dropped drones on my ancestors’ homeland. A heater was supplied for the menfolk. The woman who was interviewing me earlier tended to her sick child, laid stretched out on the seat because her daughter had difficulty sitting up. Mental distress carries the marker of a plague struck in nations like the one where I live. Poverty exposes what little cover there is.

The office we were in was Dr. Rehman’s. His portrait was grinning at us. It seemed to be saying, “Give me your money you lunatic, you need help!”

An ayat from the Holy Quran about shifa, remedy, that it is ultimately in the hands of Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He), hung on the opposite wall, punching the arrogant grin in the face. In life we seek balance. The verse reassured me: “Don’t worry so.” It seemed to say: “Answer the man’s questions and go home happy – all is well.”

I breathed in as I looked down at my feet. I know that in Spirituality, things have specific destinies too and not just mortals. The thought that visits me from time to time: maybe it’s the shoes I am wearing that are carrying me to places where I don’t belong, belong.

A woman placed a prayer mat in front of me that day for herself. She was facing the qibla for the fourth time. I patiently waited for my number to be called. “Twelve!” I heard. Covering my face -because now I will be passing through rows of men- I got up to leave the patients’ patience testing room.


1997

I was twelve-years old in the year we immigrated to America, eleven when I first landed on the brave soil. We were arriving in two hours and mother wanted everything in order. The first thing she saw was the sight of her younger daughter’s head. My head! It needed attention. It required attention. I almost wanted to cry when she was brushing my hair, and not because she was pulling at the strands. I had tears in my eyes because I had tasted Tropicana orange juice with no pulp for the first time in my short life.

My best friend from high school had paid me a visit on my second hospital stay, I had been in treatment for four months and in denial of my initial diagnosis. The proceeding to dump all medicine and carrying on with life until trouble lurked once more -the serpent raising its head drama played itself out. It’s a common prelude that way too many people experience in the initial processing of a newfound knowledge about the self.

Brooklyn was hit by a storm so severe that my family walked several of the miles on the day I was getting discharged. There were no taxis in sight for hours and the MTA was not functioning. My friend was expecting her first baby and had rushed to see me. She had a bag full of oranges to give to me. The setting and the process of checking in to visit your loved ones -and not to mention the presence of other patients who are sometimes in worse condition than you are- has the potential to throw your visitors off. I did not want to shock her but I was too helpless in offering an alternative view.

People go to zoos to see animals in cages. Seeing me in a gown, though I had my head covered, a scarf -in that was the familiar-, had I seemed weak to her? Was I the sight people conjure when they think ‘mentally ill’? This was my friend, and I wonder how much of the stereotype I filled in for her and to what degree, if at all? Had she had pity on me or was being sympathetic her character trait? Shouldn’t unborn children be kept away from sick persons like me at that time?

Shattering The Stigma of Mental Illness

For those of us in societies where there is  chaos within and a violence outside, was I mentally ill if my brain is part of my body? I was bodily ill, wasn’t I? Organ-ly ill. My mind had not stopped working. I was not pagal*, No! (*refers to somebody who is insane and is mainly a pejorative in South Asian communities) My brain had gone into overdrive and my thoughts were shooting at each other. This I know because I lost control. How did I allow myself to become so wild that I needed to be tamed? What was this force? Was it even my fault and does every event have a cause? I must have looked like a prisoner yet I have tasted freedom. Out of my own free will, I carried a transaction to deposit the ‘me’ in me in the hands of the One who made me. Whereas qismt (destiny) is sometimes cruel, God we know is always Merciful.

It requires strength to hold an image of a person you care for, far removed from a space that you once shared and to meet them at that threshold. An image like that is etched in memories for long times. Sadaf knew of my liking of oranges. Her gesture meant more than any flowers ever could represent her love for me. My employer was her ex-employer, otherwise knowledge of my hospitalization(s) was usually limited to family. After getting discharged and being somewhat stable at this point, I visited her at her house. Ibraheem assumed that the beauty mark on my chin was nothing but a button! That if he pressed on it, I would turn into a walking/talking toy. I let him play for as long as he wanted since I loved seeing the smiles on his face and the way he would giggle. I’d behave like a robot and only stop the awkwardness when he’d press the button again.


The disorder that I have and the control that it has over me is somewhat like little Ibraheem’s curiosity. It presses a button and I turn into a person other than me. I please it. I entertain it to the extent where it starts to get bored or needs a diaper change not when I lose the strength to continue. The only downside in playing this game is that the thing habitually forgets to turn the button off. It leaves me running into walls and breaking things and getting hurt in return. We need a team of rescuers, a hospitalization, and strange medicine with stranger names to bring me back.

I was shocked when I first read in our Islamic literature that the Creator laughs.

Abu Razeen reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said, “Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) laughs at the despair of his servant, for he will soon relieve him.” I said, “O Messenger of Allah, does the Lord laugh?” The Prophet ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him) said, “Yes.” I said, “We will never be deprived of goodness by a Lord who laughs!” [Sunan Ibn Mājah 181]

I understand a thing like that somewhat differently from how others read it.

After spending my twenties toiling in making sense of it all, my recovery has a lot to do with a change of terrain. It is the distance I needed to sort things out. I studied Orientalism in New York but read Edward Said speak of his love for an aunt who helped Palestinian refugees find shelter in his Out of Place: A Memoir here in Pakistan. The human component of scholarship, something that was missing previously, became vital at closing the gaps of humanity I was made deprived of. Healing begun.

By sharing my story, I’d like for people who are diagnosed with illnesses like bipolar to keep steadfast. No matter your creed or the place where you are from, know that you are not alone. And for family and friends who bear witness to the turmoil that infects a loved one to stand strong. Your strength or lack thereof has a direct impact on our wellness.

In the Quran it says that we will be tested with sons and wealth [Surah Al-Anfal;28]. Having a mental illness is a kind of test that has no beginning, nor a definite end. Take care of your health before sickness visits you is a famous saying of Prophet Muhammad ṣallallāhu 'alayhi wa sallam (peace and blessings of Allāh be upon him). There will be days when you feel frustrated and question the just ruling of a Just God. Reach out and feel blessed, for being a Muslim carries the weight of family keeping bonds.

Ideally, the Ummah is one that conducts checks and balances so that the affairs of our Muslim brethren are running smooth. Unlocking and internalizing the goodness and the kheir that Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) has placed in the world for our taking requires humility, an admittance of our own neediness followed by the realization of and acknowledging our smallness in a universe that is run not by us. Believing in God and trusting in Him are not the same.

The meaning of the word Islam is peace. Muslims exchanging the greeting of peace with other Muslims is an experience. Transferring that practice and truly living that peace needs patience. The challenge of living with and sometimes outliving a mental illness requires a tailored kind of submission. The hush of stability hums low in the beginning when loud is the announcement of a calamity. Faith after all is belief in the existence of hope alongside the tragedy that is life. What is more, our bodies are rented to us. The obligation of living inside them is not a punishment. It is a privilege. The challenge is to be at peace with our predicaments and that can be easily achieved since I believe that all of us are capable of nourishing our minds and feeding our souls, perhaps not at the same pace but the possibility of recovery is guaranteed once we take that initial step. It is realizing the potential of and exercising resilience itself that saved me. To transfer that hope in the mode of words is the least I can offer. May Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) accept, ameen.

Show, Don’t (Just) Tell – The Right Way to Tackling Mental Health

 

The writer is currently a doctoral student in American Studies at Area Study Centre 
of Quaid-e-Azam University, Islamabad. Previously, she holds a Masters in Liberal Studies from Columbia University. You may reach the editorial team of Muslim Matters if you wish to contact her.

 

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How To Be Positive In Hard Times

Amina Malik, Guest Contributor

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How to be Positive

We all know that we should be grateful. And we definitely know that we should be certain that whatever happens is good for us as believers. However, when we are tested -as we inevitably are-, many of us crumble. Why is that? Why are we not able to ‘pass’ these tests, so to speak? Many of us after a tragedy become hapless, sad, depressed, angry, or bitter.

The essence lies in knowledge that is beneficial, and the best form of knowledge is that which an individual can apply to their day-to-day life on their own. Here are a few tips to increase your patience in hard times. Like building muscle at the gym, it takes time to exercise this habit, but becomes easier over time:

Manage Stress:

Unfortunately, stressful events are abundant in our lives. People under stress can find themselves falling into thinking errors. These thinking errors include -but are not limited to-: black and white thinking, mind-reading, self-criticism, negative filtering and catastrophizing. Together this can affect how we perceive reality. Next time you are tempted to make a catastrophe out of a situation, stop and ask your self two questions:

  • Is this really a big deal in the larger scheme of things?
  • Are there any positives in this situation?

Have a Realistic Perspective of Qadr:

Although it is part of our creed to believe in divine destiny, personal responsibility is still of importance and we cannot simply resign ourselves to fate; especially if we have some sort of influence over a situation.

Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) says in the Quran:

لَهُ مُعَقِّبَاتٌ مِّن بَيْنِ يَدَيْهِ وَمِنْ خَلْفِهِ يَحْفَظُونَهُ مِنْ أَمْرِ اللَّهِ ۗ إِنَّ اللَّهَ لَا يُغَيِّرُ مَا بِقَوْمٍ حَتَّىٰ يُغَيِّرُوا مَا بِأَنفُسِهِمْ ۗ وَإِذَا أَرَادَ اللَّهُ بِقَوْمٍ سُوءًا فَلَا مَرَدَّ لَهُ ۚ وَمَا لَهُم مِّن دُونِهِ مِن وَالٍ 

For each one are successive [angels] before and behind him who protect him by the decree of Allah. Indeed, Allah will not change the condition of a people until they change what is in themselves. And when Allah intends for a people ill, there is no repelling it. And there is not for them besides Him any patron. [Surah Ar-Ra’d;11]

This puts the responsibility on us to change ourselves. Notice the word, themselves. We are not responsible for events beyond our control. These events include the behavior of our spouses, the affinity of our children to the religion, the love in the hearts of people, the weather, the gender of our child (or how many we have), or even the amount of money we will earn in a lifetime -to name a few. Often we become stuck and focus on our conditions, rather than focusing on our own behavior.

Nourish Positive Thinking:

How to Be PositiveIn order to be able to have a wise and calculated response to life’s events, we must learn to interpret these events in a way that assign positive meaning to all. Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) is after all, how we perceive Him to be. Shaytan interferes with this process through waswaas (interjecting thoughts that are based on negativity and falsehood). His goal is for the Muslim to despair in Allah’s subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) mercy. The goal is not to be happy all the time; this is unrealistic. The goal is to think well of Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) as consistently as possible.

  • Create a list of what you are grateful to Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) for daily.
  • Remind yourself everyday of the positive aspects of situations when your mind falls to default negative thinking. Self-criticism will will only encourage you to take full responsibility for negative life events and become depressed, or at the opposite end take no responsibility whatsoever; either mind-set does not help us improve our self.

Remind yourself as well as others of the benefits of Positivity:

  •  On an individual level, once we begin to think positive about ourselves and our life, we become optimistic. This positivity will then also effect our perception of others. We become more forgiving, over-looking, and patient with others when we can see the positives in any situation.
  • Increased rizk and feelings of well-being
  • Reduced likelihood of reacting in a negative way to life’s events; increased patience.
  • Increased likelihood of finding good opportunities in work, relationships and lifestyle.
  • Higher energy levels and motivation to take on acts of khayr and benefit.

10 Steps to Happiness!

Practice self-care as a daily routine:

Our bodies have rights on us. Our souls have rights on us. Our family has rights on us. Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) has rights on us. Often, when there is an imbalance in one area, our whole being can sense it. This creates anger and resentment towards those around us and life in general.

  • Take care of your body, feed it well and in moderation and exercise in a way that makes you feel relaxed.
  • Pray your prayers, read the Quran, maintain the rights Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) and your own soul have on you.
  • Take care of your tongue by avoiding back-biting and complaining.
  • Take regular showers, comb your hair, brush your teeth, and wear clean clothes; even if you are at home.
  • Take care of your mind by doing dhikr as much as possible and letting go consciously of ruminating on situations.

A Powerful Dua for Happiness

Do not over-rely on your emotions:

Our emotions are a product of our thoughts. Our thoughts can be affected by slight changes in the environment such as the weather, or even whether or not we have eaten or slept well.

 

كُتِبَ عَلَيْكُمُ الْقِتَالُ وَهُوَ كُرْهٌ لَّكُمْ ۖ وَعَسَىٰ أَن تَكْرَهُوا شَيْئًا وَهُوَ خَيْرٌ لَّكُمْ ۖ وَعَسَىٰ أَن تُحِبُّوا شَيْئًا وَهُوَ شَرٌّ لَّكُمْ ۗ وَاللَّهُ يَعْلَمُ وَأَنتُمْ لَا تَعْلَمُونَ 

“And it may be that you dislike a thing which is good for you and that you like a thing which is bad for you. Allah knows but you do not know.” [Surah Al-Baqarah;216]

How To be PositiveUltimately, our perception can be manipulated by our thoughts, shaytan, and other factors. Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) is not limited in His perceptions due to stress, emotions, or circumstances and moods. Therefore, we should be humble to defer our judgements to Allah’s subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) ever-lasting judgement. Far from naval gazing, the more we are aware of our internal perceptions, emotions, and motives, the more able we are to practice Islam in its full essence. Our forefathers understood this deeply, and would regularly engage in self-assessment which gives you a sense of understanding and control of your own thoughts, emotions and actions.

The Art of Overcoming Negativity

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On Prophetic Wisdom and Speaking to Children in Times of Distress

Rania Awaad, M.D.

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By Rania Awaad, M.D.

A remarkable trademark of the Prophet Muhammad, may peace be upon him, was that he spoke to children at their age-appropriate levels. To draw inspiration from the Prophetic wisdom on how to speak to young people, particularly in times of distress, one need only reference the Prophet’s gentle interaction with his young companion, Abu ‘Umayr, upon recognizing the child’s grief about the death of his pet. Perhaps the most striking lessons we learn from this interaction was that the Prophet, peace be upon him, recognized the child’s distress, inquired about it, then approached the child with gentleness, validation and in a non-blaming manner that both recognized and healed the emotions the child was experiencing.

It is imperative that we engage our children and teens in their moments of distress and avoid shying away from discussing difficult topics. When a disaster strikes our families and communities, it is very likely the young ears in our homes have heard snippets of our conversations and picked up on our own distress and that of other adults around them. While it may not be age-appropriate to give children the full details, hushed conversations coupled with little reassurance is a definite recipe for more fear and confusion. Here is a set of tips that we as parents can implement to help quell the fears and anxieties of our children and teens related to distressing news:

  1. It starts with us: Unplugging from social media, centering ourselves, processing our own emotions, debriefing with those whom we trust, being conscious of what we say and how. The way we react will have an impact on our children- our reactions cue them in on how they should react too. It is okay for our children to see us in a controlled state of frustration or sorrow as long as we are able to help them feel secure. It is also okay for us to delay the conversation with our children in order to give us time to process our own emotions- so long as we are able to get back to reassuring them.
  1. Prepare: How we talk to a 5-year-old will be different than how we talk to a 15-year-old. Simple language can be used with younger children while a more detailed discussion may be needed for older children. Educating ourselves about various angles of a tragedy helps us gain a sense of control and enables us to convey a balanced perspective to our children. In the Islamic tradition, we believe that good can emerge from any tragedy. Before talking to our children, it would be best to consider the key messages and values we want to express ahead of time.
  1. Inquire: Even young children may have heard about a horrific tragedy. If we have children in different developmental stages, we might consider talking to the entire family first at the youngest child’s level and then individually with each child.
    1. Ages 3-6: Avoid sharing horrific news with children in this age group if they are unaware of it. Only if we suspect they know something (like mentioning it to an older sibling or while playing, for example), should we ask children 3-6 if they’ve heard about anything that upset them.
    2. Ages 7-12: Wait and see if they ask us. There is no need to discuss horrific news with this age group unless we suspect or know they will be exposed to it. Signs of distress like regression or not wanting to go to the school or the masjid after news of a shooting, for example, are signs to invite them to talk.
    3. Teens: Assume they know- but don’t assume their knowledge is complete. We will need to fill in the blanks and correct flawed or misleading information they received from friends or through social media.
    4. Children with developmental delays or disabilities: Gear questions to the child’s developmental level or abilities, rather than their physical age. If the child is aware of the events, provide details or information in the clearest and appropriate manner possible.
  1. Listen: It is important that we first understand what is going through our children’s mind so that we can understand what they might actually worried be about. Many parents jump right to troubleshooting and problem-solving mode. Yet in doing so we may increase our child’s anxiety by projecting onto them our own adult-level fears. Listening with more than our ears helps keep us tune into our children’s non-verbal communication. Listening also means removing distractions like phones, computers and the like. It’s important to note that children may need to talk about what they are hearing and feeling for a number of days in order to process the implications.
  1. Validate: Open up the conversation by asking a simple question like, “What things are you concerned or upset about?” Once the child responds, validate their concerns even if they don’t match our own or make sense immediately. For example, “It sounds like you are feeling (name the emotion). I can understand that.” In trying our best not to minimize their fears, we allow our children to properly express their emotions. Children and teens often need help naming what they are feeling- labeling emotions (upset, angry, scared, disgusted, disappointed, etc.) helps bring them back to a balanced state.
  1. Simplify and Correct: Abstract ideas can complicate matters and scare young children. Using familiar terms and not over-explaining are both helpful for young children. For a mass shooting one may say, “A very confused and angry person took a gun and shot people. The police are working to making sure people are safe again.” Tweens and teens are more likely to hear news from unreliable sources, so they need the truth to come from us. They are more likely to respond better to us if we accept their sources but give them the tools to view the information critically. When we teach them to ask questions about what they saw or heard, it helps them think beyond a clickbait headline or meme.
  1. Model Hope and Faith: As parents, we need to model hope and strength in our identity as Muslims. Conveying pride in our Muslim identity and seeking solace in our faith is crucial to our children’s development. This is an opportune time to remind ourselves and our children that Allah is in control of everything and is the best of planners. Putting trust in Allah and channeling feelings of hopelessness into meaningful contributions to the world around them is one of the most important forms of healing. When children and teens feel that they can make a positive impact, it restores the soul and boosts the resiliency they will need their whole lives.

Most Common Mistakes:

  1. Minimizing: Suppressing the conversation or minimizing children’s reactions or fears can manifest itself in physical symptoms. Some signs to look for that they are having difficulty adjusting include:
  • Physical: Children may complain of feeling tired, having a headache, stomachache, or generally feeling unwell.
  • Emotional: Children may experience sadness, depression, anxiety, or fears.
  • Behavioral: Look for signs of social regression, acting more immature, or becoming less patient and more demanding. Children who once separated easily from their parents may become clingy. Teens may seek assistance to their distress from substance use.
  • Sleep: Watch for trouble falling asleep, staying asleep, difficulty waking up or nightmares.

Sometimes it can be hard to tell if a child is reacting in a typical manner to an unusual event or whether they are having real problems coping, and thus in need of extra support. If you are concerned, talk to your child’s pediatrician or mental health professional. If you prefer that your child speaks with a Muslim mental health professional, you can find ones in your locale here. Some Muslim counseling centers such as the Khalil Center offer both in-person and online therapy options. In all cases, do not wait for the signs. Start the discussion early, and keep the dialogue going. 

  1. Over-exposure: One of the most common mistakes is talking about horrific events in front of children and assuming they do not understand or will not be affected. The other major source of over-exposure is via media coverage of violent tragedies. Children age eight and younger have difficulty telling if what they hear and see on screens is fantasy or reality, and this ability develops gradually with age. This is why experts recommend against allowing children under age eight to view media containing any type of violence. Even after the age of eight, graphic or repetitive exposure to violence can cause children to virtually relive the event over and over. This can lead to children developing long-term anxiety, depression, anger, and even Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).
  1. Feigned Indifference: It is possible that despite our attempts to use the seven steps above to engage your children, they might not want to talk to us about their concerns. That is okay, but we must offer them alternatives such as other trusted adults who can help them. Also consider teen help lines such as Khalil Center, Stones to BridgesAmala Hopeline, or Naseeha. At the very least, let them know that help exists.

Keep marching ahead:

Tragic events stay in our collective memory and may cause very real fear and anxiety. However, they are also teachable and character-building moments to reinforce our values within ourselves and our children. As parents, it is important for us to practice self-care. Overstimulation from constantly checking our news-feeds will likely raise our anxiety levels which our children will likely pick up on.  As families, it is imperative that we connect with communities that provide spaces for encouragement, support, and understanding and serve a healing purpose for each member of the family.

Finally, a parting reminder that we are created to worship Allah, Most High, recognizing that He is in full control and is the best of planners. We must hold fast to our principles and values, and be a forward-looking people who constantly work on improving ourselves and the communities around us.

Helpful Resources:

1. The family and Youth Institute: After a Tragic Event.
2- The Muslim Wellness Foundation: Coping with Community Trauma.
3- The Khalil Center Confidential Helpline: click here.
4- The Khalil Center: Faith and Community Leader Training: Mental Health First Response Certification Training

Rania Awaad, M.D. is a Clinical Assistant Professor of Psychiatry at the Stanford University School of Medicine where she is the Director of the Muslim Mental Health Lab and Wellness Program and Co-Director of the Diversity Clinic. She pursued her psychiatric residency training at Stanford where she also completed a postdoctoral clinical research fellowship with the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH). Her research and clinical work are focused on the mental health needs of Muslims. Her courses at Stanford range from instructing medical students and residents on implicit bias and integrating culture and religion into medical care to teaching undergraduate and graduate students the psychology of xenophobia. Her most recent academic publications include works on Islamic Psychology, Islamophobia, and the historical roots of mental health from the Islamic Golden Era.

Through her outreach work at Stanford University, she is also the Clinical Director of the San Francisco Bay Area branches of the Khalil Center, a spiritual wellness center pioneering the application of traditional Islamic spiritual healing methods to modern clinical psychology. She has been the recipient of several awards and grants for her work.

Prior to studying medicine, she pursued classical Islamic studies in Damascus, Syria and holds certifications (ijaza) in Qur’an, Islamic Law and other branches of the Islamic Sciences. Dr. Awaad is also a Professor of Islamic Law at Zaytuna College, a Muslim Liberal Arts College in Berkeley, CA where she teaches courses on Shafi’i Fiqh and Women’s Fiqh. In addition, she serves as the Director of The Rahmah Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to educating Muslim women and girls. At Rahmah, she oversees the Murbiyyah spiritual mentoring program for girls. Dr. Awaad is a nationally recognized speaker, award-winning teacher, researcher and author in both the Islamic and medical sciences.

You can follow her on twitter @AwaadRania and on Instagram @dr.raniaawaad.

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