Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Hypocrisy and Facebook

So I was thinking about hypocrisy and the dual nature of many people. Let me start with myself. I will get in the car and say the prayer you need to say, right before I pop in the CD and turn up the music full blast.

So my friend and I get in the car, and I start the car. And then I start saying the little prayer.

"What are we waiting for?" My friend asks.

"Um," I reply. "I am warming the engine. That's it, warming up." Of course, it's not cool to admit you are praying.

"Dude," My friend has a puzzled look on his place. "We just stopped at this place for five minutes."

"Oh shut up. I am saying Aytul Kursi."

"Oh." Respectful silence. And then - alright, let's pop in the CD. And the music blares full blast on the speakers, where the singer describes in detail what he would like to do with his girl, and the girl replies back. Hindi or English, it doesn't matter nowadays.

I was thinking about it yesterday as I surfed Facebook.

Yes, I gave in to temptation at last. For someone who makes his living writing web applications, I am always the last one to get on any internet bandwagon. I started using Napster, just before they shut it down. I steadfastly refused to use web-banking, relenting right before phishing campaigns became well organized. I started to use torrents right before our ISP started to clamp down on them. So Facebook users beware.

So yesterday while I added a few friends and was just surfing through their pages and their friends, I came across the Facebook profile of this guy I know since after university. OK, now this guy is not your average 20 year old guy. He was always spouting religious talk. He would make you fill guilty for checking out a poster of Aishwarya Rai (telling you some line about how you were committing zina in your heart or something like that). He once sent people a ten page essay on why one must not wear ankle-length pants.

And here he was, on Facebook, in a bar, with a drink in one hand, with his girlfriend, making out. On Facebook. What do you think of that? It's not that I am passing judgement of what he did. I have plenty of friends who drink, who have girlfriends and whatever. I don't pass judgement or force my religion down on them. But I think it's the height of hypocrisy when you bug people for not wearing a cap when praying and then have your tongue down a girl's throat. A girl who is not your wife. In a bar. And then have it on Facebook for the whole world to see.

OK rant over. Meanwhile, Facebook is one cool thing. WTH is a 'POKE' though?

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Suroor said...

Oh Lord! I know what you are talking about. I just finished writing a post on the same lines.

Em said...

It's absolutely disgusting, isn't it... I was so shocked the first time I experienced this, I couldn't sleep at night for days (I was supposed to be marrying his sis, WHAT?!?). Dude, you're fooling me and a bunch of others you think are non-regular facebookers... like Allah and His recording angels're not on facebook (no pun intended :) )... Worse are the ones whose privacy settings hide their debauchery from the world at large, save for their sweet, self-selected aulia, who, funnily enough, don't accompany them when they come to preach in their thobes.

Ek Umeed said...

Mezba, "poke" is the idea of jabbing someone with your finger figuratively to catch their interest. "Poke" on Facebook means, "Hmm, I'm interested in getting your attention. So, can I get it?" So, that is what "poke" denotes and constitutes online essentially; to think of "poke" in other terms, I can provide another example: Realize that "poke" is the equivalent of the "nudge" on the new MSN Messenger but with a slight innovative twist since Facebook allows you to "poke" just about anyone, not just your friends.

Regarding your post's content, I would like to assert that I do abhor hypocrisy, but I love observing hypocrites' behaviors because they provide fodder for my amusement when they contradict themselves by action or spoken words. And I do not find many things amusing about my studies; so, I do feel I need all the amusement that I can get. Hehe. ;)

singlemuslimah said...

A "poke" is just a way of getting someones attention without having to say anything. Sometimes, I don't have anything to say to a friend or cousin or whatever but I haven't talked to or seen them in a while so I just poke them. It's like, hey.

As for the rest, all I'm going to say about that is I cannot stand hypocrisy. I'm so tired of Facebook Phones and all the rest of them.

Anonymous said...

alas you joined the tempatation island. That's my way of describing facebook :P. I find it only increased my curiosity about people and friend's of people and their friends, only more after joining facebook. But this helped me track down lots of old friends who I lost contact with for a long time. But nevertheless, I enjoy every bit of it. So, enjoy your stay and I pray that it doesnt crash down now that you've finally decided to join it. Just kiddingg...

Aisha said...

So this means you find music haraam? I guess if you do then I can see why you think its hypocritical of you. I dont feel that way I guess.

saqi namah said...

I have seen some examples of this phenomenon on the facebook as well. Also its assumed in some cultures that *guys* are ok when they indulge in such a behavior. That's Hypocrisy!

Lindsay Lohan said...


Zehra said...

Sadly, I have also learnt a lot of "unpleasant" things about people myself through facebook that I would have never come to know otherwise. The fact that people actually put stuff on facebook that they don't want others to know is honestly beyond me and I totally agree with em on "like Allah and His recording angels are not on facebook." *Laughs*

mezba said...

Suroor: As you said, great minds think alike.

Em: oh my! It's exactly what bugs me, if you pretend to be something you are not, either you see something wrong with what you are pretending to be, or with what you really are.

Ek Umeed: You are right, it's fun to know what they think you don't know. I await the chance to 'enlighten' this person.

SMuslimah: There's a lot of people I want to poke, though not just to say "hey".. lol

Ya I can't stand two faced people.

Anon: Oh facebook IS going to crash. I wouldn't call it temptation island. Atleast, not yet.

Aisha: No, I don't consider it haraam - it's soothing to the soul. Well, my soul at least. However, get my dad to agree with me on that and you can make peace in the middle east.

Saqi: Ye, we guys can get away with some stuff. However, I am soon going to list ways how we men are discriminated against *tongue firmly in cheek*. Watch this space.

LLohan: um, You too?

Zehra: That was a good line by Em eh? I don't have a problem with what people do as long as they are upfront about it, or at least don't go preaching something they don't practice in.

Anonymous said...

MEZBA!! you joined Facebook!??!?! Woot Woot! But are you serious about Facebook being jinxed by you?! If it does then I won't be pleased. My social life depends on Facebook!

Also, about the drinking things, I've noticed that too. It's not jsut the guys though, it's also the girls. however, it's mostly guys... Oh another thing I was oging to say was that this makes me think about all teh folks who eat non-halal food and make it halal by saying bismillah!

I'm not sure if anyone does that here or not, but all I can say is I don't and I really hate it when those who are supposed to be 'more religious' than me eat haram meat.

Anyway, let me know your thoughts on that one. The halal meat thing.

sonia said...

Maybe he's changed? people do go through such changes - a lot of people become religious and vice versa. you haven't been in touch with him for a while right?

sonia said...

i have to say - i've never heard of facebook :-)

Ek Umeed said...

To Sonia: You've never heard of Facebook?(Shocked gasp.) Soniaaaaa. (Laughs.) Hmm, okay, Facebook is an ADDICTIVE social network that I left. And yes, I had withdrawal symptoms. But I am kind of over it now. :)

Mezba: Facebook is addictive, definitely more so than blogging. (Sighs.) Alas, you'll learn that little hush-hush fact all on your own.

Abu Sinan said...

Music, in itself, isnt haraam. I guess it depends on what kind of music you are listening to.

If you are listening to music that is all about cursing, sex, drugs and the like, then I would say it is haraam. But there is a lot of music out there, most of it I would think, that doesnt fall into this category.

There is nothing haraam about Beethoven's 9th Symphony, you can hear the hand of God in the work.

The middle road, as always, it was counts here. Some music is haraam, some isnt.

As to your former friend, I would say that is why I dont trust people who get more "holier than thou" or those who become extremists. It is very hard to hold onto such a strict observance and when such people fail they usually go the exact opposite way.

The opposite are the Muslims who drink and have girlfriends, they are the counterpart to these extremists. Both end up going very wrong in the end.

Once again, all roads lead to the middle road. Go to one extreme or the other and you go off the road completely. It doesnt matter if you are the brother attacking everyone else for being religious enough, or the brother attacking everyone for being too religious whilst you drink and date.

Both are equally wrong, and both usually end up in the same place.

Maliha said...

Heard of facebook but never been tempted. I can barely keep up with blogging (on a daily basis...) who needs more addictions?

But i gotta say i am tempted to peek now, before it shuts down :)

Hypocrisy..don't you think each of us has a little hypocrisy to some level?

The halal meat argument is not as clean cut as you think Bengali Fob. I am all for Zabiha, but I know some scholars have made good argument for regular ole people of the book meat.

More than that, as Muslims I think we should worry a lot more about the hormones and other crap being injected in our meats and the way the animals are treated rather than just if they were slaughtered a certain way or not. Don't you think? I would love to see more affordable Halal organic meat out there...we have *none* in our area.

Hypocrisy sucks..but i think if i work on purifying the hypocrite in me, everyone else will take care of themselves somehow.

sabrina said...

it's 432pm and I have been working hard (or hardly working) on stuff. So taking a little break (which is actually a long break ) and thought about the comments left here. So I want to comments on the comments, not the post itself, the typical me!

Not to sound super mufti or anything, I actually am worried about the tone of voice we use when we criticise people, and I am guilty of that more than anyone else. If you have in fact come across something crazy about a brother or sister, I think, you should make about 70 excuses for him or her. And Imam Al ghazali's literature convinced me to believe that we should not be even "thinking" about someone else's wrong doings. thinking back/looking back, my own hypocrisies are countless. And as Muslims, we are ALL POTENTIAL hypocrites, so maybe we should use some caution there before we jump into any conclusion. Although, if I come across some explicit pictures of someone, I think I would rather not think about it at all and veil it completely from others, but more importantly, veil those facts from my own heart because that can really damage our soul a lot.

I certainly do not like the idea of judging one's sister/brother/mother/father/son/daughter by seeing a guy doing something wrong. In that case, our prophet (pbuh) had some of the worst enemies of Islam within his (pbuh) family, but that was not an indiciator of his (pbuh) character, not even remotely close.

Again, like I said a few weeks ago, look at things independently. Just because someone is bearded doesn't mean that he eats Zabihah, also remember we have VERY strong argument in both sides for that.

I don't know what I am responding to. But mostly to the comments, and not the post.

But, Mezba you are very right about pointing out people extending their comfort zone on facebook or MySpace, however, I would not encourage a discussion on this just because it brings back memories of someone else's wrong doings, make us feel like how we are better than so-and-so(read: arrogance) and that should certainly not occupy us, as Muslims. Let me leave you with a well known story. The sahabas were really really worried about their state of Iman and thought they were hypocrites themselves just because whenever they were around the Prophet (pbuh) their Iman would go up however, when they were by themselves, they would not feel that high level of Iman. think about that? just feeling a little less high in Iman made them fear about their own hypocrisy!! there is a lesson for all of us from this.

These are only my opinion! Don't mean to offend anyone, but just thought should throw in a reminder. And just in case you come across any concealed wrong doings of mine, please remember to make excuses for me for the sake of Allah and I hope I will be patient and I will remember to make excuses for you all to!! =)
Again, I remind myself before anyone else. ;)

Em said...

Maliha and Sabrina -- excellent, timely reminders, Jazakuma Allahu khairan!
*hangs head in shame*

Just one thing, though... it's true I shouldn't judge a sister by her brother, but he would have been my brother-in-law, tantamount to my own brother... truth be told, that's what bothered me more than the assumption that the sister was like him. But you're right, let alone 70 excuses, even a handful would've probably done.

isheeta said...

oh man oh man... so u joined facebook!!! Astagfirullah, lower your gazebook!! lol, anyways, good luck with that... i have yet to join, but reading all these comments, AND all the hypocrisy out there, I think I'll hold off... for another couple of years.... when its bought out by some big company and they start charging and Ill be too cheap to bother!