There are various reasons for youth’s corruption and their problems.
Youths go through many rapid physical, mental and intellectual developments. Hence there is a great need for providing them with the means of self-control and curbing of their defiance as well as wise leadership that can lead them to the straight path.
The corruption of youth can be attributed to many factors, prominent among them are:
Joblessness is a disease that kills mental, intellectual and physical capabilities. As a matter of fact, it is inevitable that human beings work; and if they are deprived of work and movement, the brain becomes beset, their intellect exhausted, and the mind becomes weak as devilish insinuations and malicious thoughts take control of their hearts.
Evil and wicked intentions may occur to them as a result of the depression that usually results from being jobless.
In order to be cured of this disease, the affected youths should get involved in activities that suit them like reading, writing, trading or any other activities that can stand between them and joblessness and which is capable of making them sound and useful members of the community.
2. Estrangement between youths and elders:
This problem appears in a situation where some elders see corruption in their youths and just stand aloof without making any effort to correct them, having lost hope in their reform.
This problem however can be solved if elders and youths endeavor to remove the estrangement and alienation between them. Both should bear in mind that society – with its youths and elders – is like a single body, and if a part of it decays, the decadence will affect the whole body. Elders also are requested to feel the sense of responsibility towards their youths and remove their attitude regarding the hopelessness of youths’ piety because Allah is capable of doing everything.
For, how often a person straying afar has been guided by Allah and thereafter became a torch of guidance and a reformer.
Youths on their part, should hold their elders in high esteem. They should respect their views and accept their directives because they have achieved greater wisdom and experience than youths have achieved. Therefore, when elders’ wisdom is added to youths’ energy, the society becomes prosperous by the will of Allah.
3. Keeping company with corrupted people:
Bad company has much psychological, mental and moral influence on the youth. That is why the Prophet ﷺ said: "is on the religion of his intimate friend (i.e. influenced by him), so let every one of you look critically for whom to befriend." [Ahmad and Abu Daawood]
Therefore, the youth should choose righteous, good and intelligent persons as their companions in order to benefit from their goodness, righteousness and intelligence. Before befriending them, they should study their conditions and reputations. If those who are being considered are people of noble character, upright, religious and of good reputation, they are like objects of a long cherished wish and become as acquired booty. They should therefore stick to them.
If, on the other hand, people of bad character, must be dealt with cautiously, then they should be kept at a distance and not taken as companions because of their sweet-talk and fine outward appearance.
4. Reading of destructive books, magazines, newspapers, etc:
This type of literature has the great potential to mislead one from his religion, faith, and lead one away from excellent morality to the abyss of degeneration which naturally leads to ‘kufr’ (disbelief).
Also, reading of this kind of literature turns the youths aside from spiritual growth because it impedes his natural inclination to do good.
The solution to this problem is to immediately shift from reading such literature to material that inculcate the love of Allah and His Prophet ﷺ in one’s heart and other items (tapes, tracts etc.) that help in actualizing faith and virtuous deeds. They should patiently endure reading or listening to such material because the soul will challenge them in order to coerce them into paying attention to what they were accustomed to before and will make them feel bored and irritated by useful books and positive sources.
There are also many books that can enhance spiritual growth and practice, such as the Quran, authentic ‘Hadeeths’, and numerous writings of scholars (based on the Quran and ‘Hadeeth’) on the life of the Prophet ﷺ his companions, may Allah be pleased with them, and heroic figures in Islamic history.