THE TALIBAN WERE RIGHT: ISLAM SAYS TV SHOULD BE BANNED!
The Evils of Television
By A Student of Darul Uloom Holcombe, Bury, U.K
All praise is for Allah Lord of the Worlds and Peace and Blessings be upon His Messenger Muhammad sallallahu alaihe wasallam whom He sent as a mercy for the worlds.
WITHOUT DOUBT IN THE MODERN INNOVATION OF TELEVISION THERE LIES A HOST OF UN-ISLAMIC FACTORS. EVEN ONE OF THOSE WHEN SCRUTINISED UNDER THE LIGHT OF QUR’AAN AND HADITH WOULD BE ENOUGH TO RENDER THIS MONSTER OF MODERN CIVILISATION HELPLESSLY HARAAM.
INSHA ALLAH IN THIS ARTICLE I SHALL PRESENT A NUMBER OF THESE FACTORS WITH REASONS FOR THEIR IM-PERMISSIBILITY SO THAT NO DOUBT REMAINS ABOUT THE ILLEGALITY OF TELEVISION.
I ask Allah the Almighty that He, through His Infinite Grace and Mercy, forgives all those people who took part in the production of this booklet and those who seek to derive benefit from it, Aameen.
The Pictures of Television
The Holy Messenger of Allah sallallahu alaihe wasallam said,
"The severest punished on the Day of Qiyaamah will be the picture makers."
(Agreed)WITHOUT ANY DOUBT, THE CONSENSUS OF ISLAMIC LEGAL OPINION IS THAT PICTURES OF LIVING OBJECTS ARE HARAAM. NOT A SINGLE ISLAMIC LAW BOOK OR A SINGLE JURIST OF ISLAM HAS GIVEN A CONTRARY OPINION.
It is only some of the ‘learned’ ones of the 20th century who have and are endeavouring to abrogate the Law of Allah by despicably attempting to legalise pictures of animate objects. THE LAW OF ALLAH ON PICTURES OF HUMAN BEINGS OR ANIMALS IS FINAL AND IRREVOCABLE. PICTURES ARE CONDEMNED AND OUTLAWED BY THE SHARI’AH.
Television is a medium whose life and existence is dependent on pictures and the institution of picture production. Without pictures there is no television. The very term television means:
"The electrical transmission of pictures in motion…"
ISLAM FORBIDS ALL USES AND SO-CALLED BENEFITS DERIVED FROM PICTURES. Thus:
(i) the making of pictures,
(ii) the keeping of pictures,
(iii) entering houses wherein there are pictures displayed and
(iv) looking and gazing at pictures with desire or satisfaction are all forbidden in Islam.
A PERSON WHO KEEPS A PICTURE OF A PHOTO OF AN ANIMATE OBJECT IS GUILTY OF TRANSGRESSING ONE OR TWO OF THE ABOVE-MENTIONED ISLAMIC PROHIBITIONS ASSOCIATED WITH PICTURES, FOR HE MAY KEEP A PICTURE WITHOUT DISPLAYING IT AND LOOKING AT IT OCCASIONALLY. BUT, ONE WHO PURCHASES A TELEVISION SET AND ENJOYS ITS PROGRAMMES IS GUILTY OF BREACHING ALL THE ISLAMIC PROHIBITIONS SET OUT ABOVE. LET US DEAL WITH EACH FACTOR INDIVIDUALLY.
Making of Pictures
The first and foremost warning of Islam against pictures is directed at the picture-makers. Our Holy Prophet sallallahu alaihe wasallam said,
"Every picture maker will be in fire."
"The severest punished on the Day of Qiyaamah will be the picture makers."
(Agreed)"The severest punished persons on the Day of Qiyaamah will be those who imitated Allah’s aspects of creation."
(Agreed)(NB: Our Nabi sallallahu alaihe wasallam made this statement while destroying a picture.)
The television is a medium that not only displays, but also actually produces pictures. By switching on your TV set you are actually assisting in picture-production. Thus, THOSE WHO INDULGE IN TV ARE GUILTY OF THE KABIRAH (GREAT) SIN OF PRODUCING PICTURES FOR WHICH TERRIBLE CHASTISEMENT HAS BEEN THREATENED BY OUR HOLY PROPHET sallallahu alaihe wasallam.
Keeping of Pictures
Islam has likewise forbidden the keeping of pictures of animate objects. Rasoolullah sallallahu alaihe wasallam said,
"The Angels (of Mercy) do not enter a house wherein there are pictures or a dog."
(Agreed)Hazrat Aisha radiyallahu anha narrates,
"The Messenger of Allah sallallahu alaihe wasallam returned from a journey and I had screened (the entrance) with a curtain on which were pictures. Rasoolullah sallallahu alaihe wasallam ripped it (the curtain) off and said, ‘The severest punished people on the Day of Qiyaamah will be those who imitate Allah’s aspects of creation (i.e. life)."
Another reason for the prohibition of keeping pictures is the factor of Tashabbuh bil kuffar or imitating the unbelievers. Hazrat Mufti Muhammad Shafi, Grand Mufti of Pakistan, says, "One of the factors for the prohibition of pictures is Tashabbuh bil kuffar."
Angels of Mercy do not enter your home when your TV set is portraying the pictures of animate objects. Our Nabi sallallahu alaihe wasallam commanded that pictures are destroyed, but the lover of television acts in direct contradiction to the command of Rasoolullah sallallahu alaihe wasallam by bringing into existence pictures by way of the institution of TV.
So, WHEN YOU SWITCH ON YOUR TELEVISION SET THEN REMEMBER THAT YOU ARE GUILTY OF A KABIRAH SIN OF KEEPING AND DISPLAYING PICTURES IN YOUR HOME. Your home is therefore deprived of Allah’s Mercy; the Angels of Mercy do not approach it; the Shayateen enter it and Allah’s wrath and our Nabi’s sallallahu alaihe wasallam displeasure settles with you. In maintaining the TV pictures on your TV screen you are just as guilty as the one who decorates his walls and home with swill pictures. You should know that the pictures on the television screen are also still pictures like all other pictures or photos. The motion you see on your TV screen is illusory and false. The ‘motion’ depicted on the screen is simulated by the rapid transmission of a large number of still pictures.
The Encyclopaedia International states:
"The illusion of motion in television is produced by showing 30 still pictures, or frames, each second. Through persistence of vision the brain retains each picture until the next comes along. We are not aware of the fact that our eyes are really seeing a rapidly changing sequence of a large number of slightly different still pictures."
Entering Homes Wherein Pictures are Displayed
The abhorrence of Islam for pictures of living things is so great that even entry into houses wherein pictures are displayed is not permissible. The Angels of Mercy do not enter such houses. The Holy Messenger sallallahu alaihe wasallam said,
"The Angels (of Mercy) do not enter homes wherein there is a dog or picture."
Prophets of Allah do not enter homes wherein there are pictures displayed. The following incident in this regard is related by the noble wife of Rasoolullah sallallahu alaihe wasallam, Hazrat Aisha radiyallahu anha:
She had purchased a cushion decorated with pictures. When Rasoolullah sallallahu alaihe wasallam saw it, he remained outside at the entrance, and did not enter. She perceived disgust on his face, hence she said, "O Messenger of Allah e, I repent unto Allah and His Messenger. What sin have I committed?"
Rasoolullah sallallahu alaihe wasallam replied, "What is this cushion for?" She said, "I bought it for you to sit on and recline."
Rasoolullah sallallahu alaihe wasallam said, "Verily, the owners of these pictures will be punished, and it will be said to them, ‘Give life to that which you tried to create." Rasoolullah sallallahu alaihe wasallam added, "Verily, the home which has pictures in it is not visited by Angels."
(Agreed)The Fuqahaa (Jurists of Islam) say on the basis of these Ahaadith that it is not permissible for a Muslim to enter a house in which pictures of living beings are displayed.
Imaam Nawawi rahmatullahi alaihe states in Sharhul Muslim that Imaam Zuhra rahmatullahi alaihe said, "It is not permissible to use an object with pictures on it nor is it permissible to enter a house wherein there are pictures."
NOW WHEN YOU SWITCH ON YOUR TV SET REMEMBER THAT YOU ARE GUILTY OF THE SINFUL ACT OF DISPLAYING PICTURES IN YOUR HOME. WHEN THE TV IS PLAYING IN YOUR HOME IT IS NOT PERMISSIBLE FOR MUSLIMS TO ENTER YOUR HOME. The Angels do not enter such a home and Rasoolullah sallallahu alaihe wasallam did not enter and chose to remain outside in disgust. In playing your TV set you are guilty of aiding and abetting a naked act of Haraam. And, Allah commands in the Holy Qur’aan:
"And do not assist each other in sin and transgression." (Qur’aan 5:6)
Looking at Pictures of Animate Objects
THE SHARI’AH OF ISLAM HAS DECLARED PICTURES OF ANIMATE OBJECTS TOTALLY HARAAM, hence it is not permissible to derive any type of benefit or use from pictures. The prime purpose of a picture is to look at to gaze at it thus deriving mental satisfaction and pleasure. A picture is of no use to a blind person. He cannot admire or criticise it. Since a picture is produced to be admired, to be looked at, to be gazed at, looking with admiration or looking with satisfaction at it will constitute the fulfilment of the actual and prime purpose of picture making. A picture is meant to be looked at and admired. Thus in fulfilling the purpose of pictures which are Haraam we are aiding this Haraam practise of pictures, and in so doing we are transgressing Allah’s command in the Qur’aan,
"And do not aid (each other) in sin and transgression." (Qur’aan 5:6)
The Shari’ah ordains:
To derive pleasure (or satisfaction) by looking at Haraam objects is Haraam.
Even if no evil factor is associated with the picture, looking at it is not permissible because a picture according to Allah’s Law is Haraam, and the most important use or benefit of a picture is to look, gaze and admire it. If any un-Islamic element or evil factor is associated with the picture, sallallahu alaihe wasallam.g., the picture is of a female or a woman whose satar is uncovered or the picture is of a person consuming or advertising alcohol, etc., then the prohibition of looking at such a picture will be stronger.
(NB: Satar, i.e. that part of the human body the covering of which is compulsory according to the Shari’ah. The satar of a man is from the navel to just below the knees. The satar of a woman is from head to feet.)
It is not permissible for men to look at women,
Hazrat Jabir radiyallahu anhu reports, "I asked Rasoolullah sallallahu alaihe wasallam about the gaze which falls suddenly (and unintentionally on a woman), and he (Rasoolullah) ordered me to divert my gaze (from the woman on which the gaze fell suddenly."
(Muslim)Like it is not permissible for males to gaze at females it is not permissible for females to gaze at males. The following verse of the Holy Qur’aan is explicit in this prohibition.
"Say (O Muhammad) unto the believing men: cast down your gaze and guard your modesty…
And say unto the believing women: cast down your gaze and guard your modesty…" (Qur’aan 23:30-31)
Our Nabi sallallahu alaihe wasallam also ordered women not to gaze at men:
Umme Salamah radiyallahu anhu narrates that she and Maimunah radiyallahu anha were with Rasoolullah sallallahu alaihe wasallam when Ibne Umme Maktoom (who was a blind Sahaabi) came to him. Rasoolullah sallallahu alaihe wasallam ordered them (i.e. his wives): "Seclude yourselves from him (the blind Sahaabi)." I said, "O Rasoolullah. But he is blind, he cannot see us." Rasoolullah sallallahu alaihe wasallam replied, "Are both of you blind as well? Can you not seen him?" (Ahmad, Tirmizi, Abu Dawood)
Hazrat Ali radiyallahu anhu narrates that he was once with Nabi sallallahu alaihe wasallam when he asked, "What is best for women?" They (the Sahaabah) remained silent (i.e. no one answered). Ali said, "When I returned (home) I asked Fatimah, ‘What is best for women?’ She replied, ‘They should not look at men nor should men look at them (women).’ I then narrated this to Nabi sallallahu alaihe wasallam who replied, ‘Fatimah is a part of me (i.e. she said what I wanted to say – she understood it well)."
There are many other Ahaadith of our Nabi sallallahu alaihe wasallam on the same subject, i.e. forbidding the sexes gazing at one another. Leave alone gazing at women; our Nabi sallallahu alaihe wasallam forbade males looking at even the thighs of men:
Rasoolullah sallallahu alaihe wasallam said,
"O Ali! Verily, the thigh is an object of concealment (satar). Never reveal your thigh, nor look at the thigh of a living or a dead person." (Abu Dawood, Ibn Majah)
And, leave alone looking at the satar of men or women, the Shari’ah ordains that it is not permissible to look at even the clothing of women if this stirs up passion in a man.
"Verily, looking at clothes (of a female) with lust is forbidden even though the clothing be such that the body cannot be seen through it." (Durrul Mukhtar)
It will be seen that ‘looking with lust’ is a crime in Islam. Now, wherever this element is present, the ruling of prohibition will apply. Whether looking at a woman or at the picture of a woman, the ruling of prohibition will apply because the element of lust exists in both cases. The Fuqahaa have clarified this point for us:
"…this (the prohibition of looking with lust) is contained in the chapter of ‘looking at a female via a mirror or water (i.e. looking at her reflection in the mirror or in water)… …looking (at females) is forbidden because of the presence of the lust, and that (element of lust) exists here (i.e. looking at a woman or at her reflection in a mirror)."
The Shari’ah has forbidden ‘looking with desire’ at women; it has declared Haraam ‘looking without even desire or lust’ at the satar of males or females; it has banned ‘looking at the garments of females with lust’. The Shari’ah has forbidden ‘looking with desire’ at even alcohol. The Shari’ah ordains that it is forbidden to look at even the reflection of women in a mirror – therefore IT CAN NEVER BE PERMISSIBLE TO LOOK AT PICTURES OF WOMEN, especially the pictures of scantily clad women on TV performing in a ‘lifelike’ manner.
You will now be in a position to easily understand that the Shari’ah has forbidden looking at unlawful things with desire or lust, and every picture on the television screen is Haraam, hence looking with satisfaction, amusement and enjoyment at it is Haraam. You are committing a Kabirah sin by your constant gazing at the Haraam on your television screen.
Nudity, Immorality and Television
The most glaring evil propagated by the television media of the world is the crime of nudity and sexual immorality. Commercialised nudity and sexual immorality under the camouflage of educational pictures are accepted and necessary features of world television. The Western World is haunted by the obsession of illicit sex, and it is this carnal obsession of illicit sex coupled with the unbelievers’ god of materialism that makes capital of the female body on TV as well as all other mass media.
The Islamic concept of morality and modesty is the very antithesis of the immorality dished out to the world via TV. Islam demands the concealment of the female body. The Holy Messenger of Allah sallallahu alaihe wasallam said,
"The woman is an object of concealment." (Tirmizi - Mishkat)
TV is an institution which is widely used to exhibit the female body. Islam has banned allforms of immorality and immodesty, but TV exhibits immodesty and immorality in theircrudest forms by depicting the actual sex acts and, above all, it audaciously and shamelessly passes these off as educational.
Television as a prime agent of immorality is very well borne out by the following report:
The Evening Post dated 21st February, 1975, reports:
"In the film Dr. Christopher is seen holding up a contraceptive sheath and explaining its use to a class of boys and girls. Called ‘Sex and the 14 year old’, the film concentrates on advising young people how to avoid pregnancy."
The above quoted extract will suffice to indicate the sordid mess and mass of unspeakable immorality portrayed by the TV. Leading non-Muslims too have voiced their concern over the evils and filth shown on TV.