MV: In today’s world, the male species are many times stereotyped as being ignorant, lazy, manly, or you know, they can’t even make themselves their own sandwiches. But still, this wasn’t only in today’s time in fact, in another time period the state of ignorance was so high that, to be a real man one had to be ignorant and had to put people down by acting stronger then them, you just couldn’t be soft. During this time one man gave rise and transformed what it meant to be a man in the arab world. He made them think twice.
This man was Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). A man had to hit people, abuse people to show himself as being a real man. This man was filled with rahma (or kindness and compassion that Allah (swt) blesses people with), he was a man that could cry so much that his tears flew from his chest just because of his fear of Allah (swt). He had all these good traits such as honesty, humbleness, compassion, patience, etc. He was a definition of a real man. And yes, he was the man.
How many people have gotten hit by accident while playing a sport? When usually we men get hurt real bad, most of us would hold in our tears because if we don’t….we’d be called a sissy, a girl, etc. But I can guarantee you, if anyone were to get hit at the bottom of their nose, even Lebron James would have tears in his eyes (and that’s saying something). The point that im trying to make is that, just because you can pretend not to cry or be this man who’s feared by others because he doesn’t “cry” while in a series injury, doesn’t make you a man. What makes you a real man is if you pray Salaat or read the Quran and cry at the words because of the fear you have of Allah (swt) or if you stop and think about your sins, and cry thinking of all the sins you have committed, being humble not arrogant, that’s what makes someone a real man.
So when does manhood start in Islam? Puberty. Now I don’t think there’s a need of going into the physical changes, most of you have probably learned that in health class. Spiritually, puberty in Islam is the age of being held responsible for your sins, the age when you should know whats right and wrong. When a child dies before the age of puberty, you don’t make dua to forgive his sins because he has been forgiven of all of his sins. You start getting all these temptations and desires that come swinging at you. So many changes occur and in all honestly, when we first go through this age it’s a lot of weight that we get, right? At whatever age we go through this age are we ever given a handbook or a guidebook that tells us that this is how so we have to deal with these problems?
In school we actually are given information about changes occur in our life but does anyone ever stop and gives us a class on how we learn how to control our emotions and temptations when we first go through this age? No. In fact so many elder adults shy away from this topic and aspect of Islam. But in reality, knowing this part is such a big part of becoming a man, or even a women.
There are two ways that we can look at Islam. One way is saying, “well, tell me what I can not do in this Deen and I’ll do whatever else I can” So basically religion is just a thing to keep me from away from doing what I want to do, its a barrier from me wanting to live it up. Oh and High School is basically portrayed as the golden age, how many movies do we see or hear about that basically show that in high school we have to live it up and party and do whatever you want in high school then after that everything else will be boring. You know, you won’t get that chance.
On the other hand we can look at Islam as, we were given this gift, this gift which gives us a purpose and amazing goal. I wasn’t given this gift to party or live it up with sins, but I was given this gift to worship Allah (Swt). And remember, there is a huge population in this earth who were not given this gift. Alhumdollilah, I was a born Muslim, so I didn’t have to go searching for the gift of Islam.
And the best years of your life that we can serve Islam is what years? The Youth. The Prophet said: “There are seven whom Allaah will shade in His Shade on the Day when there is no shade except His Shade: One of them is a youth who grew up in the worship of Allaah.
[Al-Bukhaari and Muslim]
(Day of shade being day of Judgement)
Now these points of views are completely different from each other, one point of view asks whats the least I can do and get by and the other asks what more can I do for this great deen, in fact I want other people to have this gift.
So now lets get into sports a little, if were constantly on the defensive side of lets say a basketball game, then what does that mean? We’re losing. An obvious example would be the Dallas Cowboys.
So now, back to the point, that if we just want to “at least defend some of the things that Islam wants us to do and the rest of it we can let go.” What you’re asking for is eventual failure. And on the other hand, the what more can we do is the offensive side of the team.
In these days, what we usually see is, instead of the Muslim youth being happy and on the offensive side, they look at a non Muslims, drinking, drugs and all these other types of behaviors and they say, “ohh I wish I could do that, too bad its haram”. But the correct attitude that we should have is, “I feel bad for him, hes doing all that stuff just to have fun.” Its really important to have that kind of attitude.
Now remember, at this age not only are we expected to follow our deen, as we grow up our parents expect us to be more mature, responsible and maybe later on in life support ourselves on own own and then our future family insh’Allah. So how do we deal with all this pressure? Here’s some tips:
Worship Allah (Swt).
Make good friends.
And Listen to your parents.
May Allah (Swt) help us become real men and help us to grow us in the worship of Allah (Swt).
Note: Much of the information and examples were taken by a speech by Ustadh Nouman Ali Khan.