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Social Media Platforms

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Question:

Assalaamu ‘alaikum

Respected ‘Ulama

I am on certain social media platforms, and I find that it sometimes takes too much of my time.

I had the intention of deleting it but find it necessary as well for communication purposes, especially because I am teaching.

Please advise.

Jazakallah

Answer:

Bismihi Ta‘ala

Wa ‘alaikumus salaam wa rahmatullahi wa barakaatuh

Respected Sister in Islam

It cannot be denied that social media platforms such as WhatsApp have created great ease and affordability in communication. However, the reality is that most people who use social media fall into sin on account of it.

Among the many sins that go hand-in-glove with social media are backbiting, slander, carrying tales, communicating with non-mahrams, the viewing of pictures or videos of animate objects and of the opposite gender, the blatant advertising of sins (where one posts about one’s sinful activities), etc.

In short, social media may have created ease in communication, but it did so at the cost of opening the floodgates of sin and evil. Unfortunately, the sins committed on social media are such that the vast majority of people do not even regard them to be sins and thus neglect to even make taubah and istighfaar.

Apart from the abundant sins that accompany social media is the aspect of social media addiction. This phenomenon can be observed across all tiers of society without exception. From menial labourers to students, children and even professionals – one and all have become ‘glued’ to their phones. As a result, people find it difficult to be productive and fulfil their responsibilities. On account of social media addiction, students struggle to study, employees shirk in their duties, parents neglect their children, drivers meet in accidents, children become withdrawn and anti-social and even marriages suffer.

If this is the disastrous effect of social media addiction on one’s dunya, one can well imagine the havoc and destruction it creates in one’s Deen! How many people claim that they cannot find the time to recite the Quraan Majeed, or engage in zikr, or conduct ta’leem at home with the children, yet spend hours every day staring at their phone screens!

It is thus best for us to delete and do away with social media entirely. We do not need to fear that doing so will plunge us into the dark ages. Rather, it will save us from countless sins and will free up our minds, hearts and our time, allowing us to devote ourselves to that which is truly deserving of our time and attention. Thereafter, if there is a genuine need for someone to communicate with us, we will be a mere phone call away.

In the case where one cannot do away with social media entirely (e.g. one requires it to communicate with the parents of the children that one teaches), then one must first of all ensure that one will not fall into sin. For this purpose, it is best that one refrains from joining any groups.

Thereafter, one should limit one’s use of the phone. For example, one should make it a rule to leave the phone aside after esha, and one should not pick it up until the following morning (unless there is a need to make or receive a call).

Insha-Allah, in this way, we will suddenly find ample time to recite the Quraan Majeed, engage in zikr, conduct ta’leem, etc. Furthermore, we will find time to spend with our children through which we will be able to bond with them, guide them and instil Deeni values in them.

Answered by:

Uswatul Muslimah Panel of ‘Ulama