Saturday, February 21, 2009

Music! (la la la la laaaaaah)

I love music. I spend at least some minutes listening to it every day. I honestly do not feel in any way that it goes against Islam. I think of music as a beautiful gift from God.

Some songs though, do go against Islamic ideals, and I definitely think it's best to stay away from them. Songs about hooking up and boozing it up especially. Songs about love... well... they are borderline. As a married woman, I see no reason not to listen to them. They might talk about making love and they might be sexy, but I have my husband to turn towards and feel that way about. It doesn't cause me to lust or feel anything unislamic. These songs might be best not listened to by the non-married.

I feel that it depends on mostly two things:

1) What the content is. Is it against Islam in an obvious way like speaking of adultery, pre-marital sex, partying, etc.

2) How it affects the person. Does it make you, the individual listening to it, feel or do unislamic things? Does it have a negative effect on your life, however small?

If a song speaks of unislamic ideas in a way that makes them seem OK, this is not a song that should be listened to. If the music talks about, for example, love, not mentionning that it is between an unmarried couple or anything, it could be OK, but if it makes the person listening to it lusty, then it is not OK for that person. It has a negative effect on them. If music is your primary love in life, then it's not OK for you because it's making you lose sight of priorities.
Done in moderation, I feel music is just a blessing to life.

Islam always seems to clear about things. It's yes or it's no. Or it's sometimes, but in very specific conditions. I think that music is not so easy to put a ruling on. I feel it varies widely from person to person and can depend on their individual situation.

8 Comentários:

Cecilia said...

I must say that I agree with you to 100%
I love music, it´s beautiful and I do not think it is against islam and neither does my husband. =)

Sarah said...

Interesting subject! I would add another possible way music can lead to wrong: if it leads to idolatry. Screaming teenage girls and boy bands comes to mind.

This is something I thought a lot about as a practicing Christian. Around that time I discovered Lauryn Hill's "Miseducation" album, and I became totally hooked, it didn't leave my CD player for months. What excited me was how very spiritual and moral the content of the songs was, but how hip and cool it was at the same time. Something in my conscience just didn't feel right though, and one Lent, I put the CD away in a drawer for the 40 days. I think that I felt I was idolising the singer and the music. I liked to sing too and I struggled with the fact that a lot of it was about my ego.

I felt that music was a very powerful force, but that it was morally neutral and could be used to inspire good or bad. Even when it inspired good, there were other issues like idolatry and ego to be aware of.

Of course Christianity uses music as a vehicle of worship, and its power moves people towards worship of God. I would argue that the adhan does the same job, although Muslims wouldn't regard it as musical. It is a pitched vocalisation which technically is singing.

I've seen hadith sayings that couple music with an unhealthy, sinful lifestyle. I wonder (in my humble, non-scholarly way) whether maybe the point is that when music represents that for a person, it becomes destructive. When it's "sex, drugs and rock & roll" for example. As you say, it's not just lyrical content that can do that but also musical style. But that is entirely subjective and individual. Many times in the history of music, styles that were initially viewed as profane, later became generally viewed as sacred and part of sacred tradition. There are no absolutes. I guess some religious people would rather err on the side of caution though and avoid most or all non-spiritual music.

Candice said...

I hadn't really thought of idolatry. I'm not fully sure what I think about it. I suppose it could get to that point for some people, but it would really need to be extreme. I mean, it would have to be a person literally worshipping the singer or music. Would depend on the definition of worship. I need to ponder that a bit!

أم ترافيس said...

http://www.troid.org/ibaadah/common-conflcts/the-ruling-concerning-music-according-to-the-four-imaams.html

Jamilah said...

Sometimes things can be confusing. You might not understand why, but that does not make it ok... I've been thinking about this a lot lately and sometimes you can't just ask the nearest Muslim what they think.. in most cases they won't know. You need to seek out information from Quran, sunnah and true scholars. See the hadith below.

Narrated Abu 'Amir or Abu Malik Al-Ash'ari that he heard the Prophet saying, "From among my followers there will be some people who will consider illegal sexual intercourse, the wearing of silk, the drinking of alcoholic drinks, and the use of musical instruments as lawful. And (from them), there will be some who will stay near the side of a mountain, and in the evening their shepherd will come to them with their sheep and ask them for something, but they will say to him, 'Return to us tomorrow.' Allah will destroy them during the night and will let the mountain fall on them, and Allah will transform the rest of them into monkeys and pigs and they will remain so till the Day of Resurrection."

Candice said...

I still think it's OK.

Anonymous said...

Music is beautiful and i there is nothing wrong with it Islamically. If someone is feeling that music is keeping them away from worship, then their faith is weak and they need discipline and moderation of their lifestyle. But that could be any activity, sports, video games, internet, work. A balance is needed rather than a prohibition. When the prophet pbuh arrived at Madina the people gathered and sang "The moon has risen over us", the use of drums and the oud is part of islamic history.

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