Zaman Selfie. What’s the big deal?

Bismillaahirrahmaanirraheem…

Assalamualaikum Wr. Wbt. My Dear Brothers and Sisters.

While in a taxi on my way home recently from a farewell gathering for a friend who will be leaving Jordan (and has left), I had a talk with two of my friends. We were talking about social media and why would people want to expose their private lives to everyone, to strangers. I kept quiet for a while and I admitted to them. I was guilty of such acts. I was the kind of girl who’ll instagram a picture of myself looking my best with caption  like “I’m early for school!”. Well, welcome to Zaman Selfie (the Age of Selfie)!

It’s no surprise when the first thing you’ll see once you press on your instagram or facebook apps, you’ll see a picture of either a girl or a guy with caption “but first, let me take a selfie.”. It is too common. Too common till one might not see the detrimental effects that come with it.

Okay, let’s be honest. Why do we take 99 pictures of ourselves just to pick one out of the 99 pictures to post it on instagram? Why?

Self-Worth

We may not realise this but the more likes we have for our photo, the more worthy we’ll feel. Many may not agree, but let’s remind of ourselves the moment one of our photos has the most likes. Now, remember the moment another photo of yours has the least likes. Do you feel unhappy when that happens? I mean like, “my benchmark is 150 likes! And now I’ve got 70 likes only?!”. And then for the future posts, you’ll make sure that your photos are worthy enough to get around 150 likes…or more. Why do we allow the number of likes as a yardstick for how worthy we are??

I posted this on facebook before I even got to know about my husband’s existance. And I feel that selfie or rather the biggest culprit, social network sites, has taken a toll mainly on married couples. But can we really blame social network sites for how we use it?

“I have not left behind me any fitnah more harmful to men than women.” [Bukhari & Muslim]

Fitnah in this sense doesn’t only refer to temptations, but also tests or trials. So in this case, what’s the fuel? Yeap, women.

We, women, are the main cause to what we don’t like our husbands to be seeing. Meaning, we hate it when our husbands look at other women’s photo but at the same time, we ourselves are providing photos for other women’s husband to look at! It’s like our plan of getting “like” for our photo, is backfiring us. We’re creating heartaches for nothing and we all know this is happening now.

But I’m really sorry to those women who didn’t post any photo of her but her husband is still acting that way. May Allah SWT open your husband’s heart to able to see your sacrifices.

I had a talk with a friend a year ago who just got married recently (at that point of time) and what she told me actually saddens me. Her husband is quite pious, he brings her closer to Allah SWT and he even encouraged her to be a hijabi. Alhamdulillah. What saddens me was that the fact that social network sites can really make a marriage falls apart. Well, the problem isn’t really the social network sites (of cz, they’re non-living things), the problem lies on the person who doesn’t know how to control him or herself.

Ok, let’s not go into religion, although Islam do teach us on how to mix with the opposite gender.

Specifically what my friend told me was instagram. Can a wife tolerates if a husband still follows his ex-girlfriends and those he dated before on instagram? Can you imagine while lying down, your husband using his phone and looking at instagram and his timeline is full of those girls camwhoring? What’s worse, instead of spending time with his wife, he chose to spend it on his phone.

So how to prevent this?

Bad habit dies hard. To those who aren’t married yet, prevent it now. Learn self control. You don’t have to entertain everyone. You can choose who want in your life. Before you act, think of the consequences. Especially when it involves the opposite gender, think far ahead. Think of your future spouse. Would you be happy if your spouse knows you were like that? Would you be happy if you know your spouse were like that?

So if you’re not married yet, STOP posting photos of your beautiful face. Cz the more you post, the more your beauty will fade away. Imagine you having a husband in the future, your husband might not even get to feel that beauty which is meant to be his. That’s unfair. Also, you might not be married yet, but there are men in your friend list who are married. Respect their spouse. Respect yourself.

And for married women, I reckon you to also STOP posting photos of yourself. What are you trying to prove by allowing others to look at you? You’re married and your beauty is only for your husband to see! And how many of married women here actually wear make up for only her husband to see? Posting a selfie with full face make up on social network sites just shows that that you want to impress other people than your husband.

Ladies, respect yourself. You’re worth more than those ‘like’s. Keep your beauty hidden and only for that one person who deserves it.

It takes two hands to clap. If you don’t like your husband to be looking at other women, then stop providing photos for other women’s husband to look at. And men, if you don’t want your wife to be looking at other men or you want her to stop taking selfie, then stop looking at other women; online and offline. Once you come to that agreement with your spouse, then insyaAllah you will be the only apple of your spouse’s eyes. Maturity comes from both parties. Don’t look at your spouse’s flaws if you yourself aren’t willing to correct yours. You’re married to your spouse cz you know he or she completes you. Spend more time together. There are many things that you can do as married couple.

Btw, this post isn’t only dedicated to the women. Same goes to the men. You know you’re good looking, have six packs, you can get many likes and you can make the girls go “mmmdappp” with your photos, then STOP providing food for these eyes to see. Lower your gaze and help others to lower their gazes.

Another major reason for us to control ourselves when it comes to social network sites is because of:

Riya’ (Showing off)

“Riya’ involves a level of hypocrisy and is considered to be a minor form of shirk”. [Psychology From The Islamic Perspective]

Riya’ is a minor form of shirk (associating partners with Allah SWT) because it is where you’ll be getting your power from. So in this case, when you take a selfie and you get lots of likes, you’ll feel empowered. And how common do we see this kind of conversation?

Friend: OMG! You’re so gorgeous!

You: Haha. Thank you! But not as gorgeous as you! *wink*

Friend: Haha! Nooo.. You’re more gorgeous!

And it just go on and on and on… You’ll feel even more empowered when someone actually complimented you in the comment box. Doesn’t matter if the commenter is a guy or a girl, you know it will make you feel good. The moment you see yourself more superior than others, then be careful. You may fall under the category of riya’.

Always always always renew your intention. Even when you’re just taking a photo of food. Maybe your intention was just to show people what you’re eating but suddenly you get high number of likes or comments that can make your nafs gets the betterment of you, then delete it to play safe.

*I would like to emphasize that riya’ doesn’t only happen when taking selfies, it can happen just any time. Always pray to Allah SWT to distant us from the evil riya’.

Wallahualam.

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