Prevent Evil from Spreading

Prevent Evil from Spreading

Travelling by an otherwise comfortable bus service plying between Lahore and Islamabad, I had an uncomfortable time facing constant disturbance through involuntary 'consumption' of filthy songs and indecent dialogues of films/dramas that were 'entertaining' the passengers. The hostess, whose duty was to make the passengers feel comfortable, conveniently ignored the mild protest I made to her. I had to endure the five-hour long agony, making vain attempts to fight the Satanic messages. On leaving the coach, I took two decisions: first, I will not travel on this service again, and, second, I shall report the matter to the higher officials of the bus service. I got the opportunity of immediately implementing the latter decision on reaching my destination. The passenger's lounge of the bus service had a complaint book. I availed the opportunity to freely express my feelings of disgust at the experience I had gone through. I also warned the officials that if the policy I was complaining against would continue, I and my like-minded friends would never use the service again. While writing the protest, I was convinced that apart from gaining spiritual satisfaction that I was discharging my religious duty, there was no real possibility that my protest would effectuate any change in the policy of the service.

Sometime later, when I needed to travel again, I used the same bus service, completely forgetting that I had made a resolve not to avail it. I was pleasantly surprised to notice that although the 'facility' of songs and films/dramas was still available to the passengers, those who were not interested in getting 'entertained' were spared from being disturbed by it. Earphones were provided to the passengers so that the voice of the system went selectively to only those passengers who opted for it. I am not sure whether my written complaint had anything to do with this change, but it did strengthen my confidence in the act of controlled protest.

Commercial organizations pursue their business interests when they make attempts to meet their perceived customer needs. If committed Muslims make officials of these ventures realise that they are in danger of losing considerable customer patronage if they continue to follow their un-Islamic policies, they would most certainly be forced to rethink their business strategies, if only for commercial reasons. In order for the protest to be effective, however, its message should be clear and directed only towards relevant authorities. Messages similar to the one I had delivered need to be given to the owners of general stores and other retail outlets also, who display magazines with obscene covers. The revenues generated by these journals are normally a very small component of overall sales proceeds of these outlets. However, the trend of spreading vulgarity is accelerating at a rapid pace, apart from other reasons, through these retailers, because good Muslims - who form a decent chunk of the overall customer population - seem to be indifferent to this threatening menace.

Preventing evil from spreading (Nahi 'anil Munkar) is a necessary part of a believer's list of Islamic obligations. Let us, therefore, make a serious attempt to do our best to check evil from increasing. There are good reasons to believe that our sincere efforts would bear fruits in the society. Even if they do not, we will have an excuse to present to our Creator that we did try our bit to check evil from spreading. The Qur'an informs us about the example of a few God-fearing people who used to urge others not to commit sins. When they were discouraged by some others from doing Nahi 'anil Munkar because of, what they thought, the apparent futility of the exercise, the rightly guided people defended their strategy thus:

[We are doing so because] we want to have some excuse [to present] before your Lord and, who knows, they might become God-fearing [as a consequence of our efforts]. (7:164)

(Dr Khalid Zaheer)


Articles by this author



Qur’an Transmission through the Ages

Essentials of Empathy

Positive Thinking

Critical Evaluation of the Occasion of Revelation of Surah Abu Lahab

Power of Adaptability

Sharing is Caring


Crisis Management

Life-Long Learning

Lets be Just, Come what May!

Respecting Human Beings

Unsung Heroes


Man with a Mission


Selections from Hadith



Your Questions Answered


Successful Parents

Colours of Life


The Responsibles!


The Art of Positive Thinking

Humanity Unplugged


A Purposeful Life


Winning Hearts


Your Questions Answered

Selections from Hadith

Overcoming Prejudice

Overcoming Greed

Overcoming Greed


Spiritual Advancement

To Young Adults

Fasting in Extreme Conditions

Humanity First

A Critical Analysis of The “First Revelation” Narratives (3/3)

A Critical Analysis of The “First Revelation” Narratives (2/3)

A Critical Analysis of The “First Revelation” Narratives (1/3)

Introduction to the Special Issue




The Hagar-Zam Zam Narrative

Introduction to the Qur’an

Overcoming Despair and Dejection


The Better Human

Poise and Balance

When the Tough get Going!

Surah Bani Isra’il (3/3)

Surah Bani Isra’il (2/3)

The Importance of the Word “Self”

Prayers can Move Mountains!

Animal Rights

Qualities of a Good Teacher

Let us Live for Others!

The Art of Positive Thinking

Virtues of Silence

The Person in the Mirror

Some Requests to Young Adults

Some Requests to Wives

Humanity burnt at the Stake*

A Summary of some Exegetical Views on Verses 16-19 of Surah Qiyamah (2/2)

A Summary of some Exegetical Views on Verses 16-19 of Surah Qiyamah (1/2)

Some Remedies for Jealousy

Four Steps to Selflessness

The Five Essentials of Constructive Criticism

An Introduction to Ghamidi’s Mizan

How to overcome Selfishness

Your Question Answered

Explanation of Some Qur’anic Words

Anger Management

Some Suggestions for Married Couples

God’s Domain

Let us Light up our Prayers!

Successful Parents

The “Successful Spouse” Test

Let us Value what We have

Dear Husbands … If I may say!

The “Blind Drill”

Life goes on all the same!

Prayers can Move Mountains!

Two types of “Junk Food”

Reforming Our Conduct

Supplications from the Hadith

Supplications from the Qur’an

A Small Act of Kindness

Respecting the Privacy of our Mature Children

Explanation of Some Jarh Terms

Selections from Hadith

Your Questions Answered

Two Tough Trials

Benefiting from Criticism

Your Questions Answered

The Cause of Truth

Your Questions Answered

Selections from Hadith

Restraining our Wounded Pride

Selections from Hadith

The Power of One

Preparing for the Inevitable!

Selections from Hadith

Let us Refuse to Lose!

The Sound of Silence

Selections from Hadith

Let us Enjoy every Moment of our Lives

Lets be Just, Come what May!

Selections from Hadith

Beware of the three C’s: Cynicism, Criticism and Complaint

Never Give Up!

Do We have a Spiritual Part of the Day?

Tears of Old Parents … for their Children

Life goes on all the same!

The Decorum of Criticizing Others

Tears that would not stop!

Selections from Hadith

Hobbies we must have!

Death in Innocence

“Thank you” Culture

Visit to an Old Home

We Owe it to Our Society

Experiencing God

Discovering our Inner Talent

The Battle for Honesty Continues!

Saintly Sinners

Secret to Inner Peace

Your Questions Answered

Small Acts of Kindness

Illness can be a Boon!

Philosophy of Animal Sacrifice on ‘Id

Tears of Gratitude!

Lookout to Leap for Others!


Turning Foes into Friends

Let us then Live for Others!


A Re-Evaluation of Early Developments in Qur’anic Orthography (1/4)

A Re-Evaluation of Early Developments in Qur’anic Orthography (2/4)

A Re-Evaluation of Early Developments in Qur’anic Orthography (3/4)

A Re-Evaluation of Early Developments in Qur’anic Orthography (4/4)

Abdus Sattar Ghauri (The Father Figure of Al-Mawrid!)