Can Muslims Have Fun?

As a person who has grown up a Muslim, I don’t understand why this question may come up for some people; can Muslims have fun and joy?

 

Before anything, Muslims are human beings with the same needs that all human beings have, such as eating, sleeping, working, earning money for a living and enjoying their life. It is after having all these primary needs that they choose to follow a specific framework in their life; Islamic lifestyle.

 

As far as I have observed and studied the issue of fun, entertainment, and joy in non-Muslim cultures, it is usually based on weekends at bars or nightclubs, spending all time gossiping, chattering or dancing and coming home drunk and tired.

 

Or some families go out for a family meal at a restaurant. Some may go on a picnic or camping in nature. Some families plan parties at home with friends or relatives.

 

Another activity which is called fun in non-Muslim cultures is having fun and spending time with the opposite sex. Some youth would like to have their personal vehicles to play their favorite music tracks and hang around with friends in their cars. Staying home and watching movies or playing video games is also another form of entertainment.

Now, let’s see what the status of fun and entertainment is in the Islamic lifestyle! And what the difference between Islamic and non-Islamic lifestyle is.

 

fun in islam

Do Muslims Have Fun?

 

There are many verses in the holy Quran that mention this worldly life is nothing but play and diversion [i]. But does it mean that we have to take this life as fun and entertainment? Of course not. The aim of calling this worldly life as play and diversion is to draw our attention towards a more important lifestyle: a useful lifestyle that guides us towards success in this world and the afterlife. Allah says in the Quran:

“Leave alone those who take their religion for play and diversion and whom the life of this world has deceived …” (6: 70).

Therefore this world should not entertain us so much that we forget why we have come to Earth, where we are going after death, and what the whole goal of living in this world is.

 

The Necessity of Having Fun in Islam

 

Talking about the goal of life does not mean that Muslims should spend all their time working and praying. There are many narrations that recommend Muslims to divide their day into four parts. Imam Reza (AS) says: “try to divide your day into four parts; one part for praying and communicating with your Lord, one part for earning lawful (Halal) money for a living, one part to communicate with your religious brothers who will help you know your deficiencies, and a part to entertain your soul with lawful pleasure, and in the fourth part you will gain liveliness to fulfill other three duties.” [1]

 

Therefore Muslims should set aside a part of their time to have fun, rest and have lawful (Halal) pleasure, as well as spend some considerable time with their family, talking to children to find out if they have any issues, reading different books and keeping themselves up to date. Specifying some time to pleasure and entertainment helps people have a more organized plan to fulfill their duties.

 

fun in islam

A Muslim Has No Spare Time

 

Muslims should plan their lives in a way that they would find no spare time. Spare time makes people feel useless, and then they would try to find some ways to get rid of those times. That is usually where aimless entertainment enters one’s life.

 

Allah says in the Quran: “So when you are done, appoint,” (94: 7), that in some interpretations means when you finish one task, you have to start a new one.

 

That new task might be planned as having fun, of which I will bring some examples later on in this article. So, it is important that Muslims plan their lives in a way that they find no spare or unused time in their day. 

What is Forbidden (Haram) Fun?

 

The most important point in having fun from the Islamic point of view is that one should choose a sort of entertainment that does not harm one’s self and others.

 

So if you have a careful look into the Quranic verses that name some kinds of pleasure forbidden, you can realize that those may lead into harm for the person him/herself and people around him/her.

 

Therefore, any entertainment in which people use drugs or alcohol, such as parties in which alcohol or drugs are used, or even nightclubs and bars that are the exact places for these kinds of entertainment are totally rejected in Islamic lifestyle.

 

Also, any Entertainment related to gambling is forbidden (Haram), simply because in gambling there is harm for at least one person. Also, all kinds of entertainment that divert our attention from a Godly life are forbidden (Haram).

 

The type of entertainment that a Muslim chooses should not be against the laws of Islam such as modesty. A Muslim should not have an aimless pleasure and as mentioned in the Quran; “Indeed Allah does not like the boasters.” (28:76)

 

The least usefulness that a form of entertainment should have for a Muslim is to refresh his/ her soul and to strengthen his/ her body.

 

See the second part: What is Lawful (Halal) Fun?

 

 Notes:

[i]“The life of the world is nothing but play and diversion, and the abode of the Hereafter is surely better for those who are God-wary…” (6:32)

 

 References:

[1] Bihar al-Anwar, vol.75, p.346