The global Coronavirus pandemic is unprecedented in recent history. This microscopic virus does not differentiate between black or white, rich or poor, educated or uneducated, royalty or commoner. Rather, there is no person who is immune to it. As hundreds of thousands of people are infected, governments around the world have enforced lockdowns in an effort to curtail the contagion.

While scientists and medical experts will explain the ‘apparent cause’ for this virus, as Muslims, we need to turn to the Quraan Majeed and the ahaadeeth of Nabi (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) to discover the ‘actual reason’ for such a pandemic and the various difficulties and complications that have followed.

The Quraan Majeed and blessed ahaadeeth both very clearly explain that the onset of adverse conditions and difficulties are largely the result of people sinning and violating the commands of Allah Ta‘ala. It is for this reason that our senior ‘Ulama are urging us to daily repent to Allah Ta‘ala and recite “Nastaghfirullah” – We (as an Ummah, collectively) repent to Allah Ta‘ala. Furthermore, with complete remorse in our hearts, we should resolve to abandon our lives of sin and reform our condition.

However, in order for one to repent, it is necessary for him to first understand what sin he is repenting from. If one does not even know that he has sinned, how can he feel remorse for it and repent? In this regard, one of the most dangerous sins, which is no longer regarded as a sin by many people, is that of ADVERTISING OUR SIN.

In one hadeeth, Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) mentioned, “My entire Ummah will enjoy ‘aafiyah (ease and comfort, through being spared the punishment of Allah Ta‘ala) or the forgiveness of Allah Ta‘ala, except for those who advertise their sins.” Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alaihi wasallam) then gave the example of a person who commits a sin secretly in the dead of night, hence nobody is aware of his crime. However, he disregards the favour of Allah Ta‘ala of concealing his sins and casually casts it aside, boasting of the manner in which he flouted the law of Allah Ta‘ala and defied His authority. (Saheeh Bukhaari #6069 and Fat-hul Baari)

In the past, when people would sin, they would feel remorse over what they had done. They would hope that no one learnt of their weakness and would make an effort to reform themselves. In other words, they would be ashamed of themselves. However, the situation today is the exact opposite. Not only do we flagrantly sin – we thereafter post evidence of it on social media, boasting to one and all and inviting their comments, likes and reposts. Basically, we are not only defying Allah Ta‘ala – we are doing it proudly, and are competing with one another to see who can do it better!

Take the example of our weddings. From the very commencement until the end, numerous wedding functions are filled with an array of vices and sins. Not only are these sins the highlight at such events, they are also recorded on video and photographed so that the memories of the sin can later be cherished and relived, and so that in the future their children and grandchildren can also “share in the joy of the sin” with them, astaghfirullah!

There was a time when shamelessness, such as men and women casually communicating and interacting with one another, or shamelessness in dressing, was frowned upon by most people in society, even if there were a few people who indulged in such sins. However, we have now arrived at an era where such sins have become the norm of the day, and advertising them is not only accepted but actively encouraged! Similarly, a dating relationship was disgusted by almost every person in society, whereas nowadays the boy may casually walk into the girl’s home before marriage and vice versa. Again, in such instances we are absolutely proud and boastful of our sin, and have no remorse whatsoever for what we have done.

Presently, if any person defies the law of the government and violates the lockdown regulations, even if it be at 2AM, and he posts a picture of himself doing so, the police would relentlessly hunt him down and punish him. In their eyes, his violation was one crime – but his publicising it is a worse crime as it is a challenge to their authority and a blatant disregard for the law. When this is the harsh stance taken by governments against people who publicise their violations of the law, then imagine how Allah Ta‘ala will take us to task for publicising and boasting of our violations of His Divine law!

Until and unless we do not realize how serious an offence this is, begin to feel remorse in our hearts for what we have done and turn to Allah Ta‘ala in repentance, we will continue to stir the anger of Allah Ta‘ala and invite His punishment.

However, if we turn to Allah Ta‘ala, then we will certainly find that the doors of His mercy are wide open for us. Despite our offences, He will still forgive us – if we want forgiveness and beg for it – and He is still prepared to bless us and accept us. Let us not delay, but start our repentance today.

May Allah Ta‘ala soften our hearts, inspire us to reform and accept our repentance, aameen.