Shaikh Abdul Muhsin al-Abbad (may Allah preserve him) wrote:
بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
الحمد لله رب العالمين، وصلى الله وسلم وبارك على عبده ورسوله نبينا محمد وعلى آله وأصحابه ومن تبعهم بإحسان إلى يوم الدين.
Verily the greatest favor that Allah has bestowed upon the Muslims is that He guided them to Islam and removed them from darkness to light. This is a favor which no other favor is similar to nor comes near to it. The greatest favor of Allah upon a Muslim, after the favor of Islam, is the intellect, the favor of health and well-being. From gratitude to Allah, the Almighty is for a Muslim to use these favors in the obedience of Allah and in everything that will obtain for him happiness in the worldly life and hereafter and not to use these favors in the disobedience of Allah nor to harm his worldly life and the hereafter.
The use of cellphones and their likes have spread in this time and it is a favor for the one who uses it in good and a punishment for the one who uses it in evil. The intelligent and sincere person to himself is the one who limits using the cellphone in what will bring good to him in the worldly life and hereafter, using it for permissible communication and to obtain beneficial, knowledge-based benefits by means of it with ease.
As for using it in other than that from what will bring harm to a Muslim in his worldly life and hereafter, then is obligatory to warn against it and avoid it in order to be safe from the blindness of the eyesight and insight. This is because being addicted to looking at these cellphones is from the causes of the loss of the eyesight; this great favor. Greater than that is the blindness of the insight, which will result in the sicknesses of [following] the desires and will destroy the character. And also the sicknesses of doubts, which will destroy one’s intellect. Allah, has clarified the dangers of losing the insight by His statement:
فَإِنَّهَا لَا تَعْمَى الْأَبْصَارُ وَلَكِنْ تَعْمَى الْقُلُوبُ الَّتِي فِي الصُّدُورِ
Verily, it is not the eyes that grow blind, but it is the hearts which are in the breasts that grow blind
The meaning is that the blindness of the insight is the true blindness which causes failure in the worldly life and the hereafter. That is achieved by leaving off the path of guidance and taking the path of misguidance and desires, as Allah says about the people of Salih:
وَأَمَّا ثَمُودُ فَهَدَيْنَاهُمْ فَاسْتَحَبُّوا الْعَمَى عَلَى الْهُدَى
And as for Thamud, We showed and made clear to them the Path of Truth (Islamic Monotheism) through Our Messenger, (i.e. showed them the way of success), but they preferred blindness to guidance
The Prophet (ﷺ) said:
نعمتان مغبون فيهما كثير من الناس: الصحة والفراغ
There are two blessings which many people lose: (They are) Health and free time for doing good.
[Reported by Bukhari (6412) and it is the first Hadith in Kitab ar-Raqaaiq]
The meaning is that the one who using his health and busies his time in what will bring good to him, then he is profitable. The one who uses it in other than that, then he is cheated and in loss. The Prophet (ﷺ) said:
حفت الجنة بالمكاره وحفت النار بالشهوات
The Paradise is surrounded by hardships and the Hell-Fire is surrounded by temptations.
[Bukhari (no. 6478) and Muslim (no. 7130) and the wording his (Muslim’s) wording]
The meaning is that the path towards Paradise has difficulty in it and fatigue which requires striving against Shaytan and the soul that commands evil. So the Muslim should be patient upon the acts of obedience, even if they are difficult to the souls. The consequence is praiseworthy. As for the Hell-fire, then the path towards it has in it desires and the inclination of the souls. From the desires is that which is prohibited and some of it is permissible; however, it has extravagance which exceeds the bounds.
So a Muslim should be patient from disobedience even if the souls incline towards it because falling into it will have a disastrous consequence. It was said that acts of obedience are heavy on the souls because its bitterness is present and its pleasure is missing. And acts of disobedience are lighter on the soul because its pleasure is present and bitterness is absent.
As for using cellphones and their likes with men looking at women and women looking at men and what occurs from that from obscenity, then the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) has described that as being zina.
In Saheeh Muslim (6754) on the authority of Abu Hurairah (may Allah be pleased with him) who said:
كتب على ابن آدم نصيبه من الزنى، مدرك ذلك لا محالة، فالعينان زناهما النظر، والأذنان زناهما الاستماع، واللسان زناه الكلام، واليد زناها البطش، والرجل زناها الخطا، والقلب يهوى ويتمنى، ويصدق ذلك الفرج ويكذبه
Allah written the portion of adultery for the son of Adam which he will commit inevitably. There would be no escape from it. The adultery of the eye is the lustful look, the adultery of the ears is listening (to the speech of a woman and finding pleasure in it), the adultery of the tongue is licentious speech, the adultery of the hand is the lustful grip (embrace), the adultery of the feet is to walk (to the place) where he intends to commit adultery. The heart yearns and desires which he may or may not put into effect.
The fitnah of cellphones and their likes is great and dangerous due to them being in the hands of those who are old, those who are young, and they have access to them night and day. The fathers and everyone who has guardianship, specifically, should be eager to protect those under their care from using cellphones and their likes badly. It is necessary and specific due to the statement of Allah, the Exalted:
يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا قُوا أَنْفُسَكُمْ وَأَهْلِيكُمْ نَارًا وَقُودُهَا النَّاسُ وَالْحِجَارَةُ عَلَيْهَا مَلَائِكَةٌ غِلَاظٌ شِدَادٌ لَا يَعْصُونَ اللَّهَ مَا أَمَرَهُمْ وَيَفْعَلُونَ مَا يُؤْمَرُون
O you who believe! Ward off from yourselves and your families a Fire (Hell) whose fuel is men and stones, over which are (appointed) angels stern (and) severe, who disobey not, (from executing) the Commands they receive from Allah, but do that which they are commanded
And the statement of the Prophet (ﷺ):
كلكم راع وكلكم مسؤول عن رعيته، الإمام راع ومسؤول عن رعيته، والرجل راع في أهله ومسؤول عن رعيته
All of you are guardians and are responsible for your wards. The ruler is a guardian and responsible for his subjects; the man is a guardian and responsible for his family
Reported by Bukhari (no. 893) and Muslim (no. 4724) on the authority of Abdullah ibn Umar (may Allah be pleased with him).
I ask Allah to facilitate the Muslims in every place: the governments, people, men, women, old, and young, towards every good. And to protect them from every evil, from what is apparent and what is hidden.Verily Allah is the All-Hearing and the Responsive.
May peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, followers, and Companions.
Faisal Ibn Abdul Qaadir Ibn Hassan