By Majed Iqbal- Insha’allah you are all in the best state of health and Imaan. Please take time to send durood (salutations) upon the Prophet ﷺ (Allah’s peace and blessings be be upon him), especially on the Day of Jum’ah. Abu Hurayrah (ra) may Allah be pleased with him narrated Allah’s Messenger ﷺ said, “The person who recites eighty times on Friday (the following supplication) immediately after Asr Salah, before standing up from his place, eighty years of his sins will be forgiven by Allah and the reward equivalent to eighty years of worship will be written for him: Allahuma Sallay Ala Sayyidina Muhammadin Nabiyyil Ummiyi wa Ala Aalihi Wa sallim Tasleema” [Al-Jami Al-Saghir; Allamah Sakhaawi RA in Al-Qawl al-Badee’; Imaam Daraqutni RA and Al Muassah al-Rayyan]
Abu Mas’ud ‘Uqbah bin ‘Amr al-Ansari al-Badri (RA) reported that Allah’s Messenger ﷺ said “Among the things that people have found from the words of the previous prophets was: ‘If you feel no shame, then do as you wish.’”[Al-Bukhari]
This hadith of our beloved Nabi ﷺ cannot be more apt in highlighting the culture which surrounds us today at every turn we take and wherever our eyes gaze.
Modesty, Respect, Haya (Shame/bashfulness), attributes which used to be marveled, held in high esteem, valued and which aided in creating distinguished personalities are now ideals which are sneered, laughed and mocked at.
Newspapers and Magazines openly glorify Sex, Fornication and Adultery under the guise of ‘Celebrity Culture’, something to even look up to. The less you wear, both men and women, the more ‘hip’ you are. Billboards get away with ‘bare minimum’ pictures in open display, to maximise on profits. Why, because sex sells.
Allah’s Messenger ﷺ said : “Haya does not bring anything except good.” (Bukhari)
But today, societies are modeled on values in complete opposition to this ideal, causing social chaos in the process.
The idea of freedom is pumped through every medium, feeding us ideas that life is one big enjoyment and that there is nothing beyond this. We saw this mentality in full fruition during the UK riots where even Rich girls and boys and even a potential Olympic athlete were caught red handed stealing goods from shops.
It is an idea which breeds irresponsibility, reckless behavior and a mindset of ‘If no one is looking and I can get away with something, do it’.
And this leads to my discussion on the Rochdale 9 Case which has hit every British TV Station, paper and Internet site this week.
Just this week, we have seen the convictions of nine men from Rochdale for grooming young girls for sex, including raping them and having repeated sexual encounters, individually and in groups.
The details of their filthy actions are available all over National Newspapers, Internet sites and Magazines on the horrific crimes they were involved in.
These men, from Muslim backgrounds, failed in their pubic lives to adhere to the teachings of Islam.
Indeed our Beloved Nabi (SAW) spoke the truth. Abdullah ibn Umar (ra) narrated that Allah’s Messenger ﷺ said ”Indeed haya (modesty) and Iman are Companions. When one of them is lifted, the other leaves as well.” (Baihaqi)
These men broke every Islamic rule to commit these crimes. They have lowered themselves in the eyes of Allah (SWT) and caused immense shame for their families who have to live in their communities carrying the burden of their menfolk’s actions.
RACE OR RELIGION RESPONSIBLE?
So why did this happen? There are many questions which surround this complicated case, yet national Media have stirred this into a race issue and some went as far as blaming the Shariah social rules of being too harsh, which inevitably led these men down this slippery slope.
If these actions were done in the capacity as being Pakistani or a Muslim, then all of us should be like these Rochdale 9. But we are not in scientific experiment where a particular racial DNA = sexual Predators.
Sentencing the Rochdale gang, Judge Gerald told the men. “One of the factors leading to that was the fact that they were not part of your community or religion.”
Where did race or religion come into this? Were these 9 men gaining inspiration from Islam for their acts. Definitely NO.
Even the Rochdale MP, Simon Danczuk joined his mentor, Jack Straw, stating that “BBC radio: “There is no doubt about it… this is an issue within the Asian community.” And
This is despite prosecutors on this case clearly highlighting that race was not a factor.
Greater Manchester’s assistant chief constable, Steve Heywood said “It just happens that in the particular area and time the demographics were that these were Asian men. However, in large parts of the country we are seeing on-street grooming, child sexual exploitation happening in each of our towns and it isn’t about a race issue.”
There have been other similar cases where Pakistani men groomed Pakistani girls for sex. Hence sexual predators don’t have a religion or race, they only see opportunity to carry out their depraved acts by preying on vulnerable girls.
Furthermore, the organisation ‘Teenage rape prevention’ launched in March 2012 to prevent teenagers from becoming victims and perpetrators of sexual violence and abuse. They found that 90% of those who are raped, never report to the police and encouraged to come forward and seek criminal justice.
So what about in this case. Do we have the full facts to substantiate that Pakistanis have a monopoly on this crime?
These false notions MUST be challenged at every opportunity to distance our beautiful deen from the actions of these 9 men.
People who commit crimes believe there is an opportunity there where the risk of being caught is minimal. Based upon this evaluation, criminals proceed forward with no respect for the law or any deity. They believe that they are accountable to none.
The circumstances were ‘right’ for these groomers, leading their dual lives. Measuring these calculated risks was a demonstration of criminals minds operating in full flow.
The believed they could get away with it, just like the MP’s who swindled their expenses and just like News of the World Corporation who tied their papers to senior Politicians to secure their Media empires.
So it is ideas, which restrict behaviors to this life, creating selfish and perverted pursuits, which are the real culprits to blame.
The Shariah builds a mindset of accountability in a life beyond this and of a day where every human being must explain his/her actions.
SEXUALISATION OF CHILDREN
From television programs, to Magazines, to the internet and to fashion, all have been cases of growing concern for parents and families as society steals their children and becomes the default parent , teaching them that good is what is in and bad is what people will laugh at.
Right in front of us, there are growing concerns that young girls, especially, are being exposed and influenced by sexual imagery which are playing a knock on effect on how they view themselves and their roles. Concerns on Teenage pregnancies, under-age sex, and now grooming have factored into School education taking a more active role in addressing these issues.
We can say that this played some part in this case as well as others that are happening up and down the country.
Even the Prime Minister, David Cameron could not leave the issue of ‘sexualisation of children’ un-addressed. Speaking in April 2010, the PM admitted to the growing social issue.
“Premature sexualisation is like pollution. It’s in the air that our children breathe. All the time. Every day. There is a classic example today where Primark are apparently pushing padded bras on seven-year-olds, which I think is completely disgraceful,’ said David Cameron
This is the head of a state. who cannot challenge the system he delivers to the people. WHY, because it would mean admitting that divorcing religion from politics and limiting the laws of a creator to the personal domain, Secularism, is the real cancer which is eating society out.
The ‘Grooming’ court case has raised concerns on some of the girls involved who left home, making them vulnerable to be preyed on. Rachel Smith, prosecuting, told a jury at Liverpool Crown Court that the victims, all from broken homes, were aged between 13 and 15 when the alleged abuse happened in 2008 and 2009.
Could it have been different if they were with family?
These are questions which are currently being evaluated in the wider debate of ‘Broken Britain’, a term coined by the Conservative Party during the last Election campaign and one which is having a devastating effect on society. Individualism has eaten away at one of the core pillars of society which is Family. Divorces, one night stands, Flings, Adultery, cheating, disputes on roles of men and women; all have create havoc, leaving children vulnerable to further problems.
We should feel for the girls whose families have broken down, reminding us of the importance Islam has placed on the family structure.
THE WAY FORWARD
It is Dawah, Dawah Dawah!!
For the Muslim community and wider society. Our salvation lies in following Allah’s Kitaab and the Sunnah of our beloved Rasool (SAW). It is adherence to the Shariah that creates men and women who value each other for their intellect and character.
“Say to the believing men that they should lower their gaze and guard their modesty: that will make for greater purity for them: and Allah is well acquainted with all that they do. And say to the believing women that they should lower their gaze and guard their modesty; that they should not display their beauty and ornaments except what (must ordinarily) appear thereof; that they should draw their veils over their bosoms and not display their beauty…….” (Qur’an Nur, 30-31)
NO TO POLITICIANS
Don’t fall into the trap of contacting this councilor or that one. When push comes to shove, these councilors were voiceless in articulating the correct view by distancing race or religion from the case and instead supported their Party line.
We must become a self-reliant community and create our own leaders who are willing to come forward and condemn the wrong actions as well as present the ‘real issues’ that need to be addressed.
A STORY ON HAYA
Imam Shu’bah ibn Hajjaj known as the “Amirul Momineen fil hadith was riding his horse when Abdullah, an open sinner, intercepted him. Abdullah knew his stature as a great hadith scholar. On that day he was out for some fun
“Shu’bah! Tell me a hadith,” he said with mischief in his eyes. “This is not the way to learn hadith,” Imam Shu’bah replied. “You are going to tell me a hadith or else…” Abdullah threatened.
Imam Shu’bah realized that he could not talk his way out of this he said: “OK, I’ll tell you a hadith.” He then narrated the isnad (a chain of narrators) and then the hadith: “Prophet Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam said: “If you have lost haya then do whatever you feel like.”
Abdullah’s demeanor changed suddenly. It was as if the Prophet, Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam, had himself caught him in his mischief and was speaking to him: “Abdullah, if you have lost haya then do whatever you feel like.” He was totally shaken. “I just wanted to cause trouble for you,” he admitted, “but please extend your hand. I want to repent.”
This hadith turned a life around. Abdullah, the street urchin, became a student and then a great scholar of hadith. Today he is known as Abdullah ibn Maslamah Qan’awi. His name can be found repeatedly in Sihah Sitta or the six most authentic collections of hadith, especially in the collection of Imam Abu Dawud who was his disciple.
Islam radically turned those in a life of sin into giants that worked for this deen. It is this Deen which will bring prosperity to the Muslims living in Britain when they live by it, in thought and deed and will wash off all those false accusations that the ill throw at it.
The Holy Prophet (SAW) said: “Haya and Trustworthiness will be the first to go from this world; therefore keep asking Allah for them.” (Baihaqi)
May Allah (SWT) give us Tawfeeq to stay on the Straight path