The social media is one of the greatest inventions made to keep us informed and busy. Almost everybody is in one way or the other on or associated to a social network for different reasons. We all have have different reasons for joining a social network; either to reach out to family and friends, make knew friends, seek information, knowledge, Relationship etc. As muslims, we must be mindful that everything in life has its consequences as it exposes us to a lot of things Islamically and morally unacceptable. As such, its our duty to help ourselves by regulating and monitoring ourselves while on social media portals. This article looks into ways conscious muslims can make use of the social media beneficially without the negativity that comes with it. Before we digress into the article, I would like to make it clear that this article is in no way written from a sharia point of view but rather from an Islamically acceptable norm.
1.Lower the gaze. This applies to both men and women :- It might sound strange and impossible, because we are told to lower our gaze upon sights which we feel are unhealthy for our status as muslims. But online while staring into a mobile phone can be unrealistic. What it means is that while on the cyberspace beware of haram conversations with strange people and temptations of the eyes by regulating what your eyes see and your fingers scroll to.
2.Be wary of the authenticity of the information received or broadcasted :-This applies to those of us who are on the social media for information of course it one of the fastest places to be informed on the spot. Unfortunately, one problem that still hunts us today is the authenticity of the information we are been fed with. According to a study, more than 50% of the information circulating in the cyberspace are not genuine information. Therefore, we shouldn’t be rumor mongers because as muslims we have been told about the consequences of spreading false information.
3.Be wary of who you follow :-It a difficult choice for us today especially with all of the booming entertainment. We end up following a lot of people who will only add more negativity to our lives rather than help strengthen our faith. As muslims, our priorities should be that what ever activity we engage in should be to make us better muslims and stay far away from negative people in out lives.
4.Be cautious of what you share & post :-We must always remember that no activity of ours will ever pass the sight of Allah(SWT) and angels are always present to document our every action. With that in mind, we should be extra careful about information we share or forward. If your son or daughter reads your post or status, what kind of footprint are you leaving behind? Will it make them proud or ashamed?
5.We most learn to be extremely cautious about our response especially when defending our religion. Most times, we loose our cool and respond aggressively which is not the expected response as muslims. We most learn to think well before we respond; whether you are defending your Deen or defending an injustice. What are you portraying about Muslims?
6.Is technology benefitting you? Most times we spend all day on the internet and can’t even tell a single fact we got. So if you are that type, make sure that every hour you spend on the net you can account for its benefit in to your life. If not, then its about time you start using it for things beneficial and do good and influence others to do good.
7.At times we can get so carried away by cyberspace doing various activities and forget our offline activities and duties to Allah; such as salat, family or work commitment. That becomes a huge problem for our imaan.
Everything in life comes with its advantages and disadvantages, and muslims must try as much as possible to use social media to their benefit.