Fatwa: # 16923
Category: Character & Morals
Country: Malaysia
Date: 17th July 2008

Title

Studying in a mixed environment

Question

Assalamualaikum..i'm a 20 years old girl and currently is studying English in a non Islamic environment,where boys and girls mingles together freely..and we are separated into groups regardless of our gender..every time after our discussions,i felt very3 guilty coz my groupmates,they juz don't know their boarders btween a man and a woman,it's highly plausible for our discussion to turn into a pointless-non related to our study- and sometimes i ended up joining them...i really don't want this to happen but i'm obligated to finish my study,as my parents wishes me to become a teacher..

one more thing,is it permissable for me to take this course as i had to learn literature-shakespeare etc,where there is some obscene scenes

Answer

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful  

Assalaamu `alaykum waRahmatullahi Wabarakatuh

The issues you have explained in your query are just a few examples of the dangers which exist in a co-ed learning environment. In many instances, illicit relationships begin in similar fashion when members of the opposite gender engage in pointless, unnecessary conversation. Thereafter, one is affected by evil temptations which eventually lead to worse acts. In fact, engaging in unnecessary conversation with a non-mehram is considered to be a minor form of zina. Allah Ta'ala has given us a warning in the Quran by saying:

 

ولا تقربوا الزنا إنه كان فاحشة وساء سبيلا

"And do not even go close to fornication. It is indeed a shameful act and an evil way to follow". (17:32)

 

In this verse, Allah Ta'ala did not just say "Do not fornicate", but He said do not even go close to it, meaning do not do things which may lead to adultery or fornication such as being in unnecessary contact with a non-mehram, e.g. pointless conversation etc. Shaytan is quick to mislead the believers.

Therefore, as Muslims it is incumbent upon us to fear Allah and follow His commandments at all times. If possible, Muslim males and females should look for alternative solutions such as a learning center for their own respective gender.

In your case, the ideal would be for you not to attend such an educational institute. Should you continue, the least you should do is make an effort to avoid situations where unnecessary conversation between males and females is taking place. For example, you should try and request to the instructor or headmaster of the institute to make a group of all females in your class. You should always guard your dignity and modesty by observing proper hijab and keeping your gaze lowered. At the same time, do not engage in any unnecessary conversation whatsoever with any non-mehram males. Also make tawbah and istighfaar for being in such a non-Islamic environment.

And Allah knows best

Wassalam

Ml. Asif Umar,
Student Darul Iftaa

Checked and Approved by:

Mufti Ebrahim Desai
Darul Iftaa

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