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How thoughts become habits May 5, 2007

Posted by Rasheed Eldin in Islam.
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“Ward off passing thoughts, for if you do not, they will become ideas.
Ward off ideas, for if you do not, they will become desires.
Fight the desires, for if you do not, they will become intentions.
If you do not resist them, they will become actions.
If you do not repel them with their opposites, they will become habits,
and it will be difficult to get rid of them.”

From Al-Fawâ’id of Imam Ibn al-Qayyim al-Jawziyyah

With thanks to the all-round excellent and interesting Crescent Life website.

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Comments»

1. Yusef Milan - May 7, 2007

What a ridiculous notion the Islamic faith has about Homosexuality.

To all of those who cling to the teachings of the Qur’an — the edicts and teachings of some 1500 years ago are totally out of the reach of contemporary faith.

YOU and your insensate belief in the Qur’an are ridiculous. YOU, collectively, have the finest minds of the 16th Century.

Excuse me? This is the 21st Century, and Homosexuality is embraced by most Chirstian religions, except Catholocism, which still embraces the ideals of some 2000 years ago.

Islam needs to come into the 21st Century and get REAL. As in Human Nature and the Human Experience.

One does NOT CHOOSE to become Homosexual. One does not choose to born a bird, a goat, a sheep or a dog. THAT decision belongs to Allah, and Allah alone. It follows that one does NOT choose to be a Homosexual. At 63 years of age, with many Homosexual friends and acquaintances, I know of NO homosexual who EVER chose to be such.

There exists Medical and Scientific PROOF THAT homosexuals are born with a “different” brain pattern than Heterosexuals. Check it out. You’ll find (much to your disappointment) that this is correct.

We are NOT talking about a “light switch” here — one is NOT homosexual for 30, 40 or 50 years, then one day decides to become Heterosexual — and vice-versa. Excuse me?

Islam — get REAl and get with the program. Islam is unrealistic, unforgiving, and STUPID in its ridiculous proscripts.

And what’s with this? : Allah, the Benificent, the Merciful ???

Where is the Mercy given to those whom were MADE BY GOD and yet are unforgiveable in their “sins”. Homosexuality.? Excuse me?

WHO is there to say that Allah did NOT intend for some of his creations to BE homosexual ?? Can YOU say this? Of course YOU can’t. You are NOT GOD — nor can you be presumptuous to know what His divine plans are. How DARE you !!

In the Great Name of Allah, the Benificent, the Merciful.

Yusef Milan

2. Rasheed Eldin - May 8, 2007

I approved your comment as an example of the craziness we get here. Yusef, if you want to know, then read. Stop presuming to know our opinions without any attempt to glean them, then castigating us for supposedly being the ones who are presumptious.

3. Taleb Haqq - May 10, 2007

Yusef, please DO share these “scientific” proofs that homosexuals are BORN with different brain patterns. What say you about identical twins who do not both end up attracted to members of the same sex?
No one is saying that this is a CHOICE, but rather a CONDITION because of surrounding environments, circumstances, and, yes, some choices (no one ever forces someone else to leave their home and meet up for sex…)
Your comparison of homosexuality to dogs, birds etc… is too funny.
Get real, and have some intelligence, please.

4. Saqib Sattar - May 14, 2007

So Yusuf…would you also say that Padephiles are ‘born’ that way…after all i don’t think you can convert someone to be sexually attracted to pre-pubescent children? Please do share your ‘enlightened’ 21st century wisdom with us.

5. Qusai - May 16, 2007

Salam Saqib

Paedophiles must be ‘born that way’ too, but so what? Their victims aren’t and this is what makes it a crime.

Homosexuals engage with similar minded individuals who are as physiologically and psychologically equipped to consent to such acts.

Paedophilia is an exploitation of defensless children for one’s self gratification. I hope I don’t have to explain myself further.

6. Rasheed Eldin - May 17, 2007

The comparison with paedophilia is an interesting one. Before I say anything, let me underline that I don’t intend to make a crude equivalence between the two phenomena (or rather, in my opinion, more than two – because I see “homosexuality” as different from “lesbianism”). Nor do I wish to insult anyone.

The dominant theories (not just scientific, but social/moral/ethical…) will lead people like Qusai to conclude that paedophiles (by which we must in this case mean people sexually attracted to children) are “born that way”. Yes, this is just as plausible as saying such for gays, lesbians, bisexuals, whatever. And you might know that I don’t discount such claims out of hand.

But we make such a cutting distinction when it comes to the morality of acting upon those predilections, because of the concept of consent. I wonder how strong this value will remain under the barrage of time, and perhaps lobbying (see e.g. a party in Austria established to fight for “boy love” rights).

For of course, this horrible thing we condemn as paedophilia is known by its people in their own terms, just as we are told that Islam is cruel for being against “same sex love”.

But what interests me is how this affects the discourse of “orientations”. Should paedophilia be considered another orientation – does it meet the basic criteria? OK, so if we go that far… then shouldn’t we take care not to discriminate against any orientation? Paedo rights!!

“No NO, it’s more subtle than that!” – Yes, precisely.

7. Qusai - May 17, 2007

Brother Rasheed,

In principle I can’t justify why we should in fact discriminate against any sexual orientation whatsoever. The impulse to do so would be purely religious. What troubles me is that I don’t even understand how this discrimination is in any way useful or necessary. There seems to be an underlying fear of the ‘unusual’ that lacks a convincing justification.

You seem to suggest that peadophilia may find its way back into what we percieve as ethical behaviour. Paedophilia was indeed practised by ancient cultures e.g Greece. But so was slavery codoned and even regulated by the great monotheistic religions. What links these two, and what explains why they are now universally denounced, is that both involve the infringement of one human being on the rights of another. Homosexual acts (including Lesbianism) bear no such mark at all.

As long as this golden rule is kept your fear that paedophiliacs will one day earn any sort of right is an unreasonable and groundless anxiety. That is of course if you genuinely harbour such feelings. If you were being deliberately facetious then I have to disappoint you that I could not warm up to your sense of humour.

It is not more subtle than the making use of one’s common sense.

Salam
Qusai

8. Qusai - May 18, 2007

Rasheed

I just noticed that you wish to introduce another confusing concept by claiming that you see a distinction between lesbianism and homosexuality. I’m sorry but this is getting a bit pointless. Anyways explain that further and I may decide that I owe you an apology!

9. Rasheed Eldin - May 19, 2007

Qusai, let me just comment on your latter post. I don’t think I am the one who is actually introducing confusion – I see myself as cutting through the confusion that has been allowed to gain dominance, to the extent that it is not questioned. This is of course ambitious, and I don’t claim genius for myself, but it is a task I aspire to.

The difference between male and female “homosexuality”? It is as obvious as the difference between males and females, and between male sexuality and female sexuality. I explained my argument here:

http://gaymuslims.org/2006/02/18/l-g-b-and-t/

10. Qusai - May 19, 2007

Salam Rasheed

If you go back to entry number 6 above, you mentioned homosexuality compared to lesbianism not “male homosexuality” compared to “female homosexuality”. Lesbianism is the female subtype of homosexual behaviour. The link you supplied does not discuss that at all.

Qusai

11. Rasheed Eldin - May 20, 2007

Yes fine. Now maybe you see why I avoid these words wherever possible.

12. Rasheed Eldin - May 20, 2007

By the way, while we’re having this civilised conversation, certain idiots are still trying to write their abuse against Islam. I won’t accept this and your comments are just going to get binned. Go back to JihadWatch or whatever rock from under which you crawled.

13. Yahyah - May 29, 2007

In fact, Islam’s condemnation of homosexuality is the reason I left the religion. With respect to Thomas Paine’s harm principle, the best approximation of universal morality of which I know, Islam fails with respect to homosexuality. I don’t see any need to update Islam as many try to do in linguistic gymnastics with the Qur’an and hadith. It’s better to recognize that the Qur’an, like any other religious text, was created by men for a contemporary audience. The Prophet Mohammed was certainly a great religious and social reformer who espoused principles of justice within his society. His religion begat a widespread growth of scientific and literary growth to which we owe a great debt.

According to the Shari’ah, I should be put to death for my apostasy, as should people who engage in homosexual acts. I believe Ibn Abbas prescribes that those convicted of homosexual behavior be thrown off a tall building and then stoned to death.

The manifest injustice of the Qur’an overshadows unfortunately many of its uplifiting qualities. To those who continue to believe in Islam, I suggest that you focus on the social good the religion can do and dispense with the injustice that can come from strict adherence to certain precepts.

Homosexuals acts were as morally acceptable in the time of the Prophet as they are now. The Qur’an is not outmoded: Muhammed simply did not have a firm enough grasp of sexual morality to condone homosexuality in his time.

Thanks for your thought-provoking website.

14. Rasheed Eldin - May 30, 2007

Needless to say, Yahyah, I disagree strongly with your conclusions as presented here, but I appreciate that you at least presented them respectfully. I hope you will not write off Islam entirely, and perhaps your views will change if God so lights your heart. Best wishes.

15. Musashi - June 1, 2007

That is a very helpful thing to keep in mind with all sins. ^^

Jazak(i) Allahu khair and I hope Allah makes your paths easier.

16. Arman - June 28, 2007

Bismillah Irahman Irahim
Wow, after reading all this i had to cry for at least 20 min! This is all too real and just not a dream for me anymore. i will try to express myself and say my two cents eventhough im not a very good typer. I feel for everyone in here and know how tough it is. I have to agree with both sides. Yusaf is right in what he says about we did not choose this lifestyle and he is right that this isnt a light switch that you can turn off and on, and i can totally see his frustration with Islam. We are all having a tough time with this and it is a lifetime process of trying to help ourselves with the choice we make. People are free to make there own choices, and Allah cleary stated we are humans and not free of sin, but just keep coming back to him. Some of us have the faith some of us dont and some of us are angered that since we are made a certain way that condemns us why should we be religious. we need to understand and respect everyones frustrations and treat people with respect. getting back to the light switch theory….it is very difficult to change and we never will, (unless Allah wills it and with the snap of a finger he can change us) but if are not that lucky, then we can only diffuse our natural feelings and hope they dont ever surface. We can still be religious and hope Allah gives us his blessing of changing us (but we have to show him steps we have taken in helping ourselves too) So Yusuf, trust me i understand your frustrations and i am(im sure others are too) in the same boat…but, what i dont agree with is the way you degraded the Quran. I feel the same frustrations as you do, but in no way would ever say bad things about the Quran. The Quran is a gift from ALLAH (SWT) that is a guide for us to follow, and your comment about it being in the dark ages is not true at all. I mean, who if anyone knows better about the future than ALLAH? Why would he create something behind times? it is not possible. Allah knows all and thats why he created a book that is up to date and not behind times. It is the poeple in society that have advanced(by Allahs permission) and in turn claim the Quran to be behind times. i think it may be healthy to put the gay thing on the back burner for a while and try to be religious in the best way we can, eventhough it condemns homosexuality we shoudl still strive to be good muslims the best we can, like shahada, salat(pray), fast, zakat, hajj plus try our best to refrain from what he has forbidden….TRUST ME, it wont be easy but if we try you never knwo what good can happen. Also keep in mind, Allah can send anyone to heaven he chooses and anyone to hell. (there are some great hadiths), so alwasy strive for the good. I hope i explained myself well, as i said im horrible at typing but better at talking in person. I also want to say most importantly, may Allah forgive me if i said anything wrong while writing this or if i hurt anyone, those were not my intentions. Take care, be good, and may Allah bless everyone and make their hardships easy.

Salam
Arman


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