The End - 2000 to 2009

Lowering Your Gaze Is Not Enough In This Heat

The past few days we’ve seen 96 to 108 degree weather and I’m sure many khutbahs, halaqahs, and recent Islamic email fowards discuss the heat and the Quranic ayah of lowering your gaze:

Tell the believing men to lower their gaze (from looking at forbidden things), and protect their private parts (from illegal sexual acts, etc.). That is purer for them. Verily, Allah is All-Aware of what they do. (24:30)

This is definitely one of the top 10 ayah that is used in many lectures and discussions in the young Muslim community.

Reality Check:

Lowering gaze is not enough for many Muslims. Lowering your gaze could just be as worse as gazing due to the age we live in where showing 80% of your skin is normal (sadly for both men and women). I think it’s time we do more then lowering our gaze. Move our gazes. Control our gazes. The best would be to physically remove our gazes. No I’m not saying remove our eyes, I’m saying completely relocating to less concentrated ares of fitna.

Practical Solutions:

  • Turn away, don’t just lower your gaze. Move your head. Completely turn your body.
  • When walking to school, class, work, the store, the masjid, the car, etc. use the least walked paths or paths that have the least concentrated fitna. If you live in urban areas, then don’t walk in the ghetto areas where you might get jumped or robbed.
  • Walk in groups so that you can talk with your friends and focus on them instead of the surrounding environment. Make sure your friends are ones who will make you a better Muslim instead of the ones who would promote the zina of the eyes
  • Wear clothing that is not heavy so you don’t sweat as much and don’t have that lazy feeling making you walk slow thus giving you more exposure to the sun making you hotter and making your eyes lazy.
  • Drink lots of water because you don’t want to get dehydrated.  I suggest drinking 2 bottles of water a day.

Spiritual Solutions:

  • Dhikr at all times.
  • Dhikr at all times.
  • Dhikr at all times.

I’m sure there are plenty of spiritual recommendations from the scholars regarding this issue.  So I won’t dive into it.  I’d rather stick to discussing the practical steps.

Do you have any tips, suggestions and/or comments?


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  • 16 Responses for "Lowering Your Gaze Is Not Enough In This Heat"

    1. moneysworthless June 10th, 2008 at 4:49 pm

      good tips 😀

      it’s definitely good to look down when walking up stairs

      in school hallways, looking at your feet might lead to some collisions, so like you said, speaking to friends, or looking at something else can be useful (posters on the wall, signs, anything to avoid the unwanted)

    2. Anwer June 10th, 2008 at 6:55 pm

      as salamu alaikum

      mashaAllah, very nice and timely advice (even though I’m in Seattle and over here it’s still a bit ‘winter-ish’)

      I would recommend following the sunnah of the Prophet (may peace and blessings be upon him) which is to walk fast and also br. Nouman Ali Khan recommended in one of his lectures to look down at a slight 45-degree angle so you see the knees of people…that way you are not staring at faces and the obvious attractive body parts at the same time not bumping into people as well.

      Allahu ‘Alim

      keep up the good work MR and may God increase you in ability and reward.

    3. Dawud Israel June 10th, 2008 at 6:56 pm

      Take off your glasses–prescription glasses that is. I can still see where I am going but I can’t make out people’s faces or “features”

      This is really simple and effective, but you might want to let your friends know you do this and might not say hello to them because of this strategy and it’s nothing personal to them.

    4. Usman Akhtar June 10th, 2008 at 10:34 pm

      Listen to Quran (or other islamic audio on your mp3 player). It helps so much. There’s no way i can even begin to think about trespassing the limits of our gaze if I am listening to Quran. And if you listen with translation, or if you listen to a lecture, you are so tuned into what you’re listening to that you don’t even notice anybody around you.

      I also go on the city bus daily, which really sucks because there are tons of people squashed into one place. What I did is install a cool (and frankly quite amazing) program called Quran Word For Word for your cellphone. It comes with a trial for the 30th juz, and expires after a month. (however with some tinkering, you can change the date in the time and date settings to 4 full years back, eg; its 2008, but change the year back to 2003, if you do it this way none of your days will be messed up and you will have the right days corresponding to the right dates.) Anyways its pretty amazing, I recite what parts I already remember, and read the word for word translation underneath. The overall effect is as though I am an arab listening to the quran getting full understanding of the words I am listening to. They have a bunch of other software too, like arabic – english dictionary, hadith, prophet’s dua, salaat translation, etc. You can learn SO much just by reading for that little amount of time you’re in the bus to and back from your school/work everyday, and it definitely helps lower the gaze. you can download these at:

      http://www.searchtruth.com/
      http://www.guidedways.com/

    5. The Heat is On June 10th, 2008 at 11:51 pm

      […] heat is on, the clothes come off. Mujahideen Ryder has provided some simple but useful advice on how to protect our gaze throughout this summer and beyond. Lowering gaze is not enough for many Muslims. Lowering your gaze could just be as worse […]

    6. Naeem June 11th, 2008 at 2:49 am

      AA-

      Move to Saudi Arabia. 😉

    7. Doa June 11th, 2008 at 5:08 am

      Excellent post, JazakAllah khair!

      but 2 bottles of water??!
      I thought the magic words were 8 glasses.

      SubhanAllah though, Allah swt made our bodies so perfectly. When we need water, we feel thirst..so in the summer, as we sweat more, we get thirsty more. Just answer your thirst! When you feel thirsty, make sure to drink!!

      And I’d just like to add: Sisters, don’t think this fitna is just for the brothers! If you see an 80% naked woman, make sure to lower your gaze too! The navel to the knees is awrah, even for women looking at other women, so gazing upon a woman in a short skirt or shorts would be haram–for us women too!
      Oh, and don’t succumb to the pressure. In trying to keep cool, don’t suddenly let your clothes become ‘slightly’ transparent. I swear, I hung out with two of my nonmuslim friends in 95 degree weather, and they both looked at me like I was wearing a winter coat lol but they were sweating madly and I was alhamdulillah–fine. When you protect Allah swt’s commandments, He protects you.

      And another bright idea? Stick a bottle of water in the freezer at night, and put it in a plastic bag and then your bag in the morning. If it gets too hot, pull it out and use it as a cooler, and when it melts, you’ve still got cold water! [But make sure to put it in that plastic bag…or else everything in your bag will get wet as it melts.]

    8. Ahmed Eid June 11th, 2008 at 11:01 am

      Nice post…
      Ill definitely take the advice
      Jazakallahu Khayran

    9. H. Ahmed June 11th, 2008 at 3:32 pm

      Good post. Drinking 2 bottles of water is not nearly enough in this weather though.

      And i like your emphasis on the dhikr. What causes our gaze to go astray (in addition to the obvious that is all around us) – is ghafla (forgetfulness), and the only cure to ghafla is dhikr

      Good looks amir!

      wassalaaam

    10. Dawud Israel June 11th, 2008 at 4:18 pm

      Have a read of this:
      http://islamworld.net/docs/gaze.htm

    11. MusimahBloggerer June 11th, 2008 at 10:00 pm

      1. Seek Allah’s help!
      You cannot do it alone.

      2. Don’t watch television/movies even news broadcasts unnecessarily (you can always read online, newspapers, etc).

      If you look at women on the screen, it becomes that much easier to look at them in real life. One is also inundated with displays of “romance.”

      It’s truly harder to fear Allah in private than in public. If you can do it when you are alone, then you can do it when you’re outside. And the summer will be a breeze, insha’Allah.

      3. Read Surah Yusuf.
      If you think this heat is too tempting to resist, think again.

      Reality Check: The summer is indeed hot but….
      `The fire of hell is hotter, if only they knew.’ [Surah Tawbah].

    12. Imtiaz June 12th, 2008 at 10:06 am

      DONT WALK … RUN !

    13. whatsup29 June 17th, 2008 at 9:57 pm

      LOL Imtiaz thats funny

    14. Zecchetti June 19th, 2008 at 7:27 am

      JazakAllahkhair MR

    15. Your sister June 19th, 2008 at 11:53 pm

      Imtiaz lol thats a good idea. Youll get a breeze kind of and get to your destination faster hehe. Anyway I agree with Doa. Women should also lower their gaze from other women if they see it is forbidden. If the men are lowering their gaze from her so should you lol. And honestly my freinds are nonmuslim mostly and they always ask me if im hot wearing jeans or pants and long sleeves. But im absolutly fine maybe even better then they are. jazakullah for the post

      Salaam

    16. Omar November 15th, 2008 at 12:08 am

      focus on where you’re going and what you’re doing and let everything else stay in your peripheral vision. whatever is in your peripheral vision will only get as much attention as it warrants. focusing kills the anxiety. anxiety can drive one into sin.

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