Question and answer details
|Thank you so much for your sincere effort to explain Islam to Muslims and non-Muslims alike. My question might be a bit strange, but I am a new convert and I pray the qiyam (Ramadan night prayer) at the local mosque. I just want to say that I enjoy it immensely. Well, I also came across the brother of one of our sisters who pray with me. They drop me home after the prayers, as I live in the same neighborhood. Day after day I developed an affection of love towards him... and I feel so bad about violating the dignity of the month and also being so insensitive in Ramadan. The relation is very respectful and he may not have even noticed I love him in the first place. The struggle is inside my heart and soul. I just wanted to ask what should be done to make a better Muslim out of me and make the worship I am engaged in worthwhile and really purifying? How can I obtain the strength to have better morality? I am sad and confused… please help me with your healing words.|
|Heba Raouf Ezzat|
AnswerSalam, dear Julie.
May Allah bestow mercy on you during the month of Ramadan.
Well, I have always believed in the right to love. The impression that love is opposite to the manners of Islam or against a profound sense of spirituality goes against the socio-logic of Islam itself.
It is just that when two people love each other they have to act in conformity with Islamic morality. So, the feeling cannot be judged, what can be judged are the actions.
In this sense, every love; genuine love - is a marriage of souls. When the two persons are single – or even in the case of polygamy, when the woman is single – the feeling should be framed by a socio-legal marriage of the two.
Also, it should be framed by the engagement of family and community in providing the couple with support and recognition. This is how love and marriage become an integral part of the community and a foundation for bringing Islam about in personal time-history and social space, generation after the other.
In light of such definition, a person may not transgress on God's revealed guidance, regarding the way we should behave socially, not transgress another relation of love and commitment, hence the severe position towards zina (sexual intercourse outside wedlock).
I think that what is currently assumed to be Islamic morality, regarding the segregated relation between the two sexes in public life, is by and large only rigidity and traditions… rather than true Islam.
Reading the history of the prophet (peace be upon him) does prove that. I will not go into details here on the overlap between the public and private, and the astonishingly active presence of women in the public sphere. This is while being very strict with manners, yet very assertive, in matters of love, marriage, marital relation and even divorce!
I`mar cannot be secured without peace, compassion, respect to others' dignity and rights, including individual zones of privacy and Allah's right to be the Judge on ideal goodness and best modes of social interaction… etc.