The impact of Netflix on our hearts

We could write books on how we have become somewhat lazy, anti-social and unproductive beings over time. We have grown accustomed to using our leisure time in front of a screen: be it scrolling on our phone, the TV or a tablet.

We constantly hear reminders, and I’m sure many of us strive to take heed of them but have we realised the impact Netflix and it’s like has on our hearts?

For the last few months, whenever I scroll on any social media platform it’s filled with jokes in regards to programs on Netflix. It’s odd because I tend to follow mostly accounts I think would be of benefit to me and that share reminders or people that I hold in high regard. However, I get shocked at the number of people that watch programs that are known for nudity, sexual references and in many cases sex scenes. It’s also shocking to learn that people that class themselves as “students of knowledge” and are teachers actively watch such programmes and even have recommend others to watch similar programs.

I find this startling and confusing. Firstly; you’re watching it, you may claim to forward the bad scenes and think that is enough but then you are recommending it to others. Why is this wrong?

We know that Iblees said:

“(Iblees) said: ‘Because You have sent me astray, surely, I will sit in wait against them (human beings) on Your straight path. Then I will come to them from before them and behind them, from their right and from their left, and You will not find most of them as thankful ones (i.e. they will not be dutiful to You)’”

[al-A’raaf 7:16-17]

I reference this as whenever I think of the causes for one’s destruction I think of how Iblees plans so carefully to lead us astray. We may think one glimpse, one look is fine but that may plant in us a seed of desire, it may be the trigger to go on the wrong direction but due to the fact we see it as something harmless and minor we would not notice this and thus fall into a trap we may not be able to escape. You may have forwarded a bad scene, you may have changed the channel however it may be too late as curiosity of ‘what happens next’ or seeds of lust and desire may have already started to grow. For those that are married, you might watch something but think it’s okay, I have a spouse and I will only be with them. Don’t you think that it’s a bit weird, wrong and just kind of disgusting that you could be aroused from something you watch which then may lead to you being intimate with your spouse?

We have frankly let our guard down in terms of what our eyes consume, forgetting they are the gateway to the heart.

Not only do we watch these programs like Power, You, Game of Thrones (to name a few) but we share them with others and recommend it. Say you forwarded the scenes and you were able to avoid any temptation and you didn’t fall into sin, but then you shared it. You may not have sent it to someone and told them to watch it, you may have simply tweeted, or shared a snap or Instagram story showing that you’re watching it and enjoying it, and then someone else watches this, but they do watch the scenes and those scenes lead them to eventually watch more films and programs and maybe because it left them wanting to see more they even watch porn and it’s important to note that this is not only applicable to men. This can happen to women to. So essentially, you aided in a plan of Iblis for your brother or sister’s destruction.

Some may read this and say, this is all farfetched and we’re trying to put points together or try to be demeaning and call “haram police” – a title I would happily own. To those people, I suggest thinking about the reality we are in, the impact and the effect and to not have such a narrow view. It’s important as Muslims that we don’t just see things immediately but we look at things from a birds eye view, analyse causes and effects and the domino effect our actions have on those around us.

Ironically, we safeguard our children from screens and from bad scenes and we closely monitor what they watch (well we should) but why do we then use man made certifications for age to dictate what we are able to watch? So we see a film is classed as appropriate for 15 or 18 and we think as we have passed that age, it is okay to watch it. However, that’s based on changing perceptions of what is right for people to watch at different ages by people we wouldn’t see as credible anyway.

Most programs and films have normalised same sex relationships and transsexuals. Most people wouldn’t allow their children to watch these things, however we watch it ourselves and the aim of these programs and films that have these notions embedded into the films is to: create sympathy for that follow that way of life, to normalise it for us to see it as normal by showing people happy, and fighting to live in such a way. I often think, that the Muslims that show support for the LGBT movement do so, as they grew up watching this in programmes, slowly fed to them in programmes like Friends, Will and Grace and many more.

We need to ask ourselves, why we spend our leisure time in such a way? What can we do instead?

We need to stop the normalisation of watching such programmes and films in the Ummah and we should be giving naseeha to those who share programmes and films that have filth in it. I was shocked when someone told me to watch Power, the sister observed niqab so I trusted that it wouldn’t have bad scenes but frankly I had to scramble for the remote as me and my mum had left it to the side and it left me wondering how this had become normal – it was an open sex scenes which I later learnt from others is in almost every episode.

We have belittled our hearts and feed it anything through our eyes and choose to be ignorant of the impact it has on us.

We ask our readers to please take heed, to cancel any subscriptions if you must and to never share in any way programs, films, games or anything that can aid in the destruction of your brother or sister. This is the first of many posts on this subject as we need to constantly remind and advise on this to treat this sickness that has spread in the ummah.

May Allah azza wa jal forgive us our, purify our hearts and make it easy for us to lower our gaze online and offline Ameen


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