Trying to Quit Music?

October 19, 2007

As Muslims, we want our last words in this life to be the shahadah, our declaration of faith, not the lyrics to some song.  Subhana’Allah, music is something one’s heart can become addicted to so easily.  However, there are ‘techniques’ we can use so that we can decrease how much we listen to music as music can easily lead our hearts astray. 

Even though I follow the opinion that “music” is not permissible, I understand there is a difference of opinion in this subject.  Therefore, I will stay away from discussing the fiqhi issue on music as I am no scholar. 

However, I would recommend to the person who wavers in their decision of whether or not they want to listen to music to consider the hadith of Rasoolullah (SAW) in which he said, “”Both legal and illegal things are evident but in between them there are doubtful (suspicious) things and most of the people have no knowledge about them. So whoever saves himself from these suspicious things saves his religion and his honor. And whoever indulges in these suspicious things is like a shepherd who grazes (his animals) near the Hima (private pastures) of someone else and at any moment he is liable to get in it. (O People!) Beware! Every king has a Hima and the Hima of Allah on the earth is His illegal (forbidden) things. Beware! There is a piece of flesh in the body if it becomes good (reformed) the whole body becomes good but if it gets spoiled the whole body gets spoiled. And that is the Heart” (narrated by Bukhari).  To say the least, indeed, the issue of music is doubtful, so let us save our religion, honor, and heart!

In terms of personal reflections on how to leave music, it is a simple process.  Subhana’Allah, some people are able to do such deeds cold turkey where they decide to do something one day and the same day, they implement want they want to.  However, this technique is hard for the majority of people as one becomes prone to return to his or her old ways as is the case with some Muslims in terms of the deen.  May Allah (SWT) protect us.  Ameen.  My personal recommendation would be to leave music in steps or stages with a target date set for each step.  For example, one could give up one genre of music at a time (as I did).  Another way to give up music in stages would be to eliminate the places/times where one can listen to music.  For example, listen to lectures, nasheeds, or the recitation of the Holy Quran instead of the radio in your car.  No doubt, I have become a nasheed fan over time.

Subhana’Allah, we waste so much time listening to music when instead we could be accumulating knowledge (I even listened to MCAT CDs in the car when I was studying for the MCAT).  Furthermore, we can garner soo many good deeds in our remembrance of Allah (SWT) by listening to the Quran or Islamic lectures.  Indeed, when we do something solely for the sake of Allah (SWT), we will see the perks of such deeds.  For example, Rasoolullah (SAW) said, “Whoever says, ‘Subhan Allah wa bihamdihi’ (Glorified is Allah and praised is He), one hundred times a day, will be forgiven all his sins even if they were as much as the foam of the sea” (narrated by Bukhari).  We could definitely take advantage of this hadith in our milk-runs to the supermarket!

May Allah (SWT) accept our deeds.  Ameen.

In closing, consider the statement of Abdullah ibn Masud, the companion of the Prophet Muhammad (SAW), as Ibn Masud said, “The love of the Quran and the love of music cannot combine in the heart of a believer.”  How true…