Be Sensor-ble!

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Almost every machine has certain built-in sensors. The role of these sensors is to measure and monitor the readings of different aspects and accordingly regulate the functions in process, thus ensuring that the machine remains free of malfunctions. A typical example of this is a heat sensor (e.g. in a hair dryer) which prevents overheating by causing the machine to switch off when a certain temperature is exceeded.

In the absence of such sensors, or if these sensors have to be tampered with or overrode, the machines would severely malfunction, and ultimately, would suffer severe or even irreversible damage. Hence, these sensors are considered to be safety features, and their inclusion within a product is appreciated and causes the value of the product to increase.

It is for this reason that cars which are equipped with ‘lane assist’ sensors, and ‘PDC’ sensors etc. are more in demand and fetch a higher price.

As human beings, Allah Ta‘ala has also installed certain ‘sensors’ within us. For example, the sensor of pain warns us that our physical body is in danger of being damaged and harmed.

However, we have not only been endowed with sensors to preserve our physical body. Rather, Allah Ta‘ala has also instilled within us a special sensor which is vital for the preservation of our imaan and Deen – this is the ‘sensor’ of ‘hayaa’ (shame and modesty).

It is on account of a person possessing hayaa that a person abstains from immoral actions and shameless activities. When confronted with such sins, the sensor of hayaa is activated and a person automatically feels a sense of shame that causes him to exercise restraint and abstain from succumbing to the evil temptation.

Unfortunately, when a person continues to ignore the sensor of hayaa, or even worse – he tampers with it or deactivates it (i.e. he is brainwashed by the ‘values’ of the disbelievers which directly clash with hayaa) – then there is nothing preventing him from ruining and destroying his imaan and Deen. Hence, the hadeeth mentions, “When you do not have hayaa then you will do as you please.” (Saheeh Bukhaari #6120)

There was a time when most people who slipped into some sin would do so in secret, ashamed of their weakness and remorseful over their transgression. Such people, though sinful, still possessed some vestige of hayaa that confined them to committing their crime behind closed doors. However, the time has now come when people are not only blatant in their sin – they are even proud of it.

In other words, they have even been stripped of the last vestiges of hayaa, to the point where they feel no shame before Allah Ta‘ala or any person. They will personally record themselves committing sins, in photos and videos (the making and viewing of which is also a sin), and post them online to gain the ‘admiration’ of their ‘followers’. A Muslim girl will feel no qualms in introducing her boyfriend to her parents, and they will similarly feel no shame in meeting him and entertaining him.

The imaan of such people has sunk to the lowest ebb where it is in imminent danger of being forever lost. Furthermore, such people are responsible for promoting indecency and immorality in society. Through their ‘influence’, countless people imbibe evil qualities, develop evil habits, fall into sins and are led astray. This is perhaps one of the reasons why when Sayyiduna Luqmaan (‘alaihis salaam) was asked, “Who is the worst person?” he answered, “The person who is not concerned regarding whether people see him committing sins or nor not.” (Hliyatul Awliyaa vol. 6, pg. 151)

Hayaa is not a mere academic concept to be discussed, debated and studied. Hayaa is an overwhelming feeling in the heart. It is a perpetual mindset and attitude that governs and regulates a person’s every action and reaction and even shapes his thought process. In short, hayaa is the sensor system safeguarding our imaan which is our ticket to Jannah.

May Allah Ta‘ala bless us all with the treasure of hayaa and may He safeguard our imaan and Deen, aameen.