Pearl of Wisdom
'People who perform acts of courtesy towards others benefit more from them than the receptors of their kindness, for verily they have the reward for them, the [rewarding feeling of] pride for having helped someone as well as a mention. So however much good a man may do for others, it ultimately always starts by benefiting himself, and hence he never seeks thanks for the benefit incurred by himself through helping others.?
Imam Muhammad ibn Ali al-Taqi [as]
Kashf al-Ghamma, v. 3, p. 137
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Ask Qul - QA
Subject: Engagement in Islam - is it real?
Question: I am in a dilemma. A very close sunni brother is getting engaged this summer and he is very happy. Now, my stance in this matter is different. I believe that there is no such thing as an "engagement" in Islam. Nikah is the marriage contract.. and that's what holds strongest for me.
Knowing this, I feel sad at seeing the brother committing a wrong.. and inviting further sin over the years till official marriage.On the other hand, I feel a soft happiness for the brother in knowing that Inshallah he will be getting married to the person who he speaks highly of, in a few years time if God so Wills.
The question lies in how should I be reacting towards this brother's joy? Should I congratulate him, knowing that by doing so I am encouraging him to engage in possible lust (which is haram)? I am not in a situation where I can avoid greeting him for this stepping stone in his life. Please advise.
Since this brother is very close to you, maybe after congratulating him you should tell him of the possible sin which he may be committing if he performs a haram act. In all sincerity, advise him of the possible choices he has to avoid the sins (reciting the 'aqd immediately, or mut'a for the sake of making the relationship halal). If he says that mut'a is not allowed, you can refer him to a chapter in a recently translated book called "Questions on Jurisprudence" in which the question of mut'a is discussed from Sunni sources.
Explain to him also that he can have the relationship with his fiance whilst keeping his conscience clear at the same time.
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