33.1 LIFE-STYLE, namt al hayaat

By Professor Omar Hasan Kasule Sr.


The essentials of life are food, water, shelter, security, and clothing. The functions of food are providing body, body growth, and body maintenance in the best condition. Meals together strengthen social relations are are a form of entertainment The Law forbids foods specific foods and drinks that are injurious to good health leaving the rest of foods as mubaah. It is prudent to avoid foods whose status is doubtful. The malnutrition of the rich is over consumption that leads to disease. Malnutrition of the poor is inadequate intake. Allah provides rizq for all living things. There is enough food in the world but its distribution is poor; some have too much while others starve. Food shortage is also caused by war, political instability, social injustice, or economic inefficiency. Humans throughout history have struggled, worked, and even went to war to ensure food security. Water is is necessary for all chemical reactions in body metabolism. It is used for cleaning and temperature regulation. The functions of the house are protection from the weather and aggression, privacy, child-rearing, social interaction, rest and entertainment. Humans need physical security, psychological security, and emotional security. The functions of clothes are protection from the weather, modesty and covering nakedness, beauty, identification for social intercourse, occupational purposes, and ibadat. The Law enjoins covering the ‘awrat but gives a wide latitude on how that can be done. Different dress fashions enable humans derive pleasure from clothes. Dressing for arrogance of for fame is forbidden.



Humans unlike animals must cover their nakedness for for human dignity and preventing sexual stimulation. The limit of awrat in salat is the standard. The man's awrat is between the navel and the knee. The woman's awrat is her entire body except the face and the hands. Awrat should be covered al the time. Exposure of awrat to others is generally forbidden except for exceptions based on age, gender, social status, fear of temptation, family relations, or occupational needs. Covering of awrat is relaxed for elderly women, for young children unaware of sexuality, for servants working inside the house, and for women infront of other women. The spouse can see the whole awrat. Close relatives (male and female), children, and servants in the hiuse are allowed to see the awrat of a woman except between the navel and the knee. Covering more than the minimum is required of temptation is feared. A handsome man should cover the legs and the upper part of the body. A stunningly beautiful woman should veil her face. Innocent non-repeated or non-purposive looks at non-awrat parts of the body are permitted. What should not be seen should also not be touched. Hijab has great social, religious and political significance. It forces society to look at a woman as an intelligence and competent member and not a beautiful body to be admired. It asserts Islamic identity in the face of European cultural and political invasion of the Muslim world. It saves waste of money on imported cosmetics and dress fashions.


33.1.3 ENTERTAINMENT, tarfiih/tarwiih

The Law forbids immoral and obscene poetry, singing, dancing, and art. Dramatic expositions that are moral and do not violate any provisions of the Law are permitted. Any entertainment that involves ikhtilaat is forbidden. Making pictures and sculptures without necessity is discouraged. Pariticipative sports for purposes of building body strength is encouraged. Spectator sports is discouraged. Sports is discouraged if it is associated with addiction, commercialization, gambling, and violence. All forms of gambling are forbidden.



The Qur’an describes social failure as ‘ajz, wahn, dhull, and kasal. Failure may be physical, psychological, or social but all are interrelated. Failure manifests as neglect of Allah’s duties, social incompetence, lack of seriousness, kufr, misguidance, transgression, temptation, maghram & ma'atham, hamm & ghamm, jahd al bala & dark al shaqaa, miserliness, distress and sorrow, helplessness, laziness, cowardice, indebtedness, begging from others, poverty, being overcome by others, vain talk, extravagance, questions on disputed issues, and being hasty. The ultimate form of failure is loss of self-control and ending up being under the control of passions and becoming an addict to a habit or a sin. The causes of failure are: forgetting Allah and neglecting His commands, diseases of the heart, and peer pressure. Social failure is is a result of wrong choices of what life-style to follow.

(c) Professor Omar Hasan Kasule Sr. 2004