Assalamu alaykum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh. I am shameful to ask this question, but now it has come to a time that I feel that I need some personal, righteous guidance. Dear shaykh, I have read almost all fatwas regarding masturbation and many others, but I feel I want some personal attention please. I dearly love Allah and want to prove this to Him by giving up this grave sin. I try to keep away from the sources which cause me temptation, but I have been doing this for five years now, and when I do not do it, there comes a period that I forget Allah completely and carry out my haram desire. I cry many times out of fear of Him. I performed Hajj and ‘Umrah and almost gave up this sin only to go back to it. I want Jannat-ul-Firdaws (the highest level in Paradise) with my true heart, but I am very afraid that because of this sin which I am not able to give up, I might not make it into Heaven. I want to fear Allah by my breath, but I just feel like I get very far from Him at times. I just cannot understand how to give this up, because of this sin which is among the other major sins which I commit, and it feels as if my ability to cry in solitude is also fading. Crying is my only hope, and the tears which flow make me happier than owning the whole earth. I do not want the blessing of tears to go, I want to enter Al-Firdaws, the highest, and also give up this sin as well as other major sins like lying, backbiting, slandering, and disobedience of the parents at times. Please help me, and do not look me over, for I will love you if you bestow the righteous knowledge upon me. I need Allah’s help, and yours too, to bring light into my heart and enter Al-Firdaws.
Assalamu alaykum wa rahmatullah.
May Allah make it easy for you, the concern you have because of the sin is a very healthy concern, and it is a sign of faith. When the heart is still alive and not dead by the effect of the sin, it keeps regretting and feeling bad. So be grateful to Allah that your heart is in that condition.
We, as human beings, are bound to sin; this is a fact. No one is sinless after the Prophet ﷺ. The Prophet ﷺ stated that all the sons of Adam are sinners and that the best of them are the repentant ones. So our job after fulfillment of the Tawheed (pure monotheism) and being a Muslim is to be always in a state of repentance.
There are two types of people with regards to sinning. One type of people do not really care, and they are persistent, they are in great danger if they do not repent to Allah. As for the others, they are constantly repenting to Allah, and never persistent in sin. Every time they fall into sin, they immediately repent to Allah. They are the successful ones.
Shaytan (the devil) has many ways to lead people astray, one of which is to make sinners despair of the forgiveness and Mercy of Allah. He would whisper to the sinners that they are so evil that Allah will not forgive their sins till they give up repenting to Allah, in order for them to join the first type, that of the persistent sinners. Knowing that, it is important to remain steadfast in repentance and never give Shaytan hope that you will give up on the Mercy of Allah. At the same time, you should take the truthful means to quit the sin and never commit it again. If you become weak and commit the sin, then repent, and never quit repentance. Put your trust in Allah, and seek His forgiveness and Mercy.
Here are some important things you have to do if you are sincere in finding a way out of this predicament:
1- Strengthen your faith and Tawheed by learning the correct belief and getting to know Allah with His Names and Attributes.
2- Guard your prayer in the Masjid five times a day, as the prayer washes away the sins and reforms the hearts and makes them steadfast on the religion. Never leave the prayer in the Masjid, even if you committed a sin, because Shaytan will try to deceive you by saying that you are not righteous, and that you are a sinner, and that you should not go to the Masjid or you will become a hypocrite. This is all part of the deception of the Shaytan. Therefore, never leave the prayer in congregation in the Masjid.
3- Try to get involved in your local Masjid with the good people.
4- Read about the evil effect of the sins, like in the book of Ibn al-Qayyim Ad-Daa’ wad-Dawaa’ (The Illness and the Medicine).
5- Make a lot of Istighfaar (asking for forgiveness) daily.
6- Go to Hajj and ‘Umrah frequently.
7- Make the morning and evening Thikr (expressions of remembrance of Allah) from the authentic books like Hisn al-Muslim (The Fortress of the Muslim).
8- See what causes you to fall into sin, and stay away from taking the initial steps to it. For example, if it is being alone, then try not to be alone, etc.
9- Get married if you have the ability; otherwise, fast constantly, as the Prophet, sallaAllaahu alayhi wa sallam, said.
10- Supplicate Allah, the Most High, to protect you from the sin; that is the most effective tool: sincere supplication. Get up at night and pray and cry, and ask Allah for help like a drowning person hanging on a log.
May Allah make it easy for you and protect you from the evil within yourself.