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Author Topic: The Fame Monster  (Read 1709 times)
BrKhalid
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« on: Oct 03, 2011 01:48 PM »


"Daddy.....I want to be famous"


How many a child in the world today utters those all too familiar words?


We live in a world where increasingly children are taken in by stars and celebrities such that becoming a doctor, a pilot, a fireman seems so passé.


Who wouldn't want to live the lives of the rich and famous and have millions of fans in adoration?



Having returned back to the UK from a stint abroad, I have been astounded by how celebrity and fame, in particular, has become part of the national psyche.


There is nothing more which exemplifies this phenomena than The X Factor which I believe is currently one (if not the most) popular show on national television.


For the uninitiated, it follows the lives of singing hopefuls as they rise from humble origins and battle it out in an attempt to win a multi million pound record contract and all the glamour and glitz that brings.


The X Factor is like a juggernaught which steamrollers everything in it's way. It's on TV, it's online, it's on the radio, it's in the papers and if by a slight quirk of fate you manage to avoid all the above media you still end up meeting people whose first line in a conversation is "OMG did you watch the X Factor on Saturday?"


The impact on children of such a barrage in the media is immense and who can really blame them for being sucked in when everyone else seems to have entered the black hole.


They are taught that if they work hard and believe in themselves, then one day Simon will believe in them and will lead them to the promised land of celebrity and adulation.


People will want to talk to them, write about them and (incredibly) be like them so why would anyone not want the trappings of fame?


Surely this is something which we should all be aspiring to?


In contrast, The Messenger of Allah saw taught us to be in this world as a stranger and to be in this world but not *of* this world for it is a merely a stepping stone to something of much more enduring and greater value.


How can one compare the riches in this world to the riches of the Garden?


How can one compare the success of this world with the success of having crossed the bridge over Hell on the Day of Judgement?


How can one compare the fame of people in this world when the entire heavens and earth mourns the death of a believer when they pass away?


I am reminded of the comic line from that Carry On film many moons ago:


"Infamy, infamy, they've all got it in for me!"


What we (and our children) need to learn is that being famous amongst people is an irrelevance but being famous with the One who created us is the ultimate true reality!!


Being talked about in the presence of angels as such a such a servant is greater adulation than countless followers on facebook or twitter.


Working hard and striving one's utmost ultimately will lead to riches and a life of contentment but we must not concern ourselves with the outcome of our endeavours from the outset but rather satisfy ourselves with simply journeying along the path.


Perhaps in time once this realisation sinks in, our children will shun the fame of this world and say:


"Daddy.....I want to go to
Jannah"

Say: "O ye my servants who believe! Fear your Lord, good is (the reward) for those who do good in this world. Spacious is God's earth! those who patiently persevere will truly receive a reward without measure!" [39:10]
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« Reply #1 on: Oct 03, 2011 02:28 PM »

salam


Did you write that?

It's very true & one of the many reasons I don't mind not having a TV.




Wassalaam

And when My servants question thee concerning Me, then surely I am nigh. I answer the prayer of the suppliant when he crieth unto Me. So let them hear My call and let them trust in Me, in order that they may be led aright. Surah 2  Verse 186
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« Reply #2 on: Oct 03, 2011 05:46 PM »

wsalam,

Over the years we've seen so many extremely high profile cases of celebrities come to sad ends either through drugs or early tragedies... ie Amy Winehouse, Kurt Cobain, Michael Jackson, Anna Nicole Smith, Aliya, JFK jr., Princess Diana countless hip hop stars, musicians, etc etc

People who had it 'all'... I think this is truly a lesson for us. No one has 'it all' and celebrity, wealth and fame does not bring anyone happiness. Look at all the famous actors and tv stars. Can anyone say they are 'happy'? They live very difficult lives and all of that stuff brings it's own problems.

I think that's part of what we should be teaching the kids too.

BrKhalid's above reflection reminds me of this quote:

Yearning for Allah and His meeting is like the gentle breeze blowing upon the heart, extinguishing the blaze of the Dunya. Whosoever caused his heart to settle with his Lord shall be in a state, calm and tranquil, and whosoever sent it amongst the people shall be disturbed and excessively perturbed.

-Ibn Qayyum Al Jawziyyah
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« Reply #3 on: Oct 03, 2011 07:49 PM »

Assalaamualikum,

BrKhalid that was so very true!!!

I sometimes am gripped with fear of what our future generation will be up to.  :oThe  present world itself  offers alluring means to go astray,making people lose the real purpose of life.


I had a casual talk with a 7 yr old the other day,he knew far more than what I must have known about the outside world at that age!
Got me thinking whether I have to do extra hard work to keep my children(inshaAllah..I am not married yet Smiley )
away from false attractions of the world around. Huh?



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« Reply #4 on: Oct 05, 2011 07:46 PM »

Asalaamu Alaikum bro

Quote
Did you write that?

It's very true & one of the many reasons I don't mind not having a TV.


It was written in response to the obsession we have with celebrity culture but the worrying thing is that even without a TV, one can be drawn into it because of the rise of social media and advancement in communications.


Quote
celebrity, wealth and fame does not bring anyone happiness.


Indeed, as the hadith states, richness is not be found in material things but in being content with what one has, such that there is no need or desire for anything else.


Quote
Got me thinking whether I have to do extra hard work to keep my children(inshaAllah..I am not married yet) away from false attractions of the world around.


I have heard it be said that is not simply about abstaining from the false attractions of the world but actually inculcating a feeling of irrelevance to the world especially when compared to the hereafter.


Abstention is one level but actually having no regard or longing for it is another.


An analogy would be a child gazing at sweet stall and yearning for some candy even though he knows too much will be bad for him and another child who faces in a completely opposite direction such that he does not even see the sweet stall to begin with!!


As mentioned in the quote above, we certainly need more people in this world who yearn for Allah and His meeting!!


There is probably a responsibility on all of us to act as appropriate role models for our children and those under our care such that they can differentiate between the banality of 'dunya' and the reality of 'akhirah'  thus keeping them suitably grounded.


As with the X Factor hopefuls, there is nothing wrong in having dreams and aspirations; they just need to be focused in the right direction. bro

Say: "O ye my servants who believe! Fear your Lord, good is (the reward) for those who do good in this world. Spacious is God's earth! those who patiently persevere will truly receive a reward without measure!" [39:10]
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« Reply #5 on: Oct 05, 2011 08:44 PM »

Br Khalid you are very right in what you say, these days its very very hard for the younger generation not to get sucked into a media's version of the ideal life.

Here in Saudi, from the people I have seen, the children of today not only do not know much about Islam, but they dont want to learn, and the parents dont want to teach them for fear of being radical or overly islamic (they fear that their children will not be able to live in a western society when growing up)

Its sad, knowing that there are so many young muslims who dont know how to read Quran, or pray, or even have muslim names. They pride themselves on having "cool clothes" and "not being  a nerd" and "having 3 ipods at home".
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« Reply #6 on: Oct 05, 2011 09:03 PM »

I was watching a Nouman Ali Khan video about a year ago and he said pretty much the same thing. Like supposing we've people who're totally into the deen and really enthusiastic about it, even they have the "I wanna be like that guy" syndrome. Not a lot of the muslim youth want to to do stuff that is mediocre but important nonetheless, like manning the parking lot at the masjid or some charity event. They all want to get up on the dais and make a fiery speech and walk away with their head held high. Man, what a pity.

Quote
"not being  a nerd"
I am not a nerd and neither do I intend to become one and I am really thankful that I am not one but it's pretty insulting nonetheless.  In fact I like the company of nerds, you get to learn so much without having to read a million books Smiley
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« Reply #7 on: Oct 07, 2011 12:45 AM »

Asalaamu Alaikum bro


Quote
Its sad, knowing that there are so many young muslims who dont know how to read Quran, or pray, or even have muslim names. They pride themselves on having "cool clothes" and "not being  a nerd" and "having 3 ipods at home".


Saudi (as with most of the Gulf countries) suffers from terrible peer group pressure amongst parents and children alike where they have to be 'seen' to have things otherwise disgrace is borne down on the family name.


Personally I do not like the term 'nerd' or 'geek' but fully support what it represents; individuals willing to disassociate themselves from the crowd and believing in their own principles and rules of conduct.


Our Prophet saw said that Islam started as something strange and would return to be something strange so in a sense there is actually something quite comforting if one is seen as being 'strange' amongst people.


Not fitting in with the world and the 'in crowd' is actually no great loss and probably a huge blessing in the grand scheme of things.


Say: "O ye my servants who believe! Fear your Lord, good is (the reward) for those who do good in this world. Spacious is God's earth! those who patiently persevere will truly receive a reward without measure!" [39:10]
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« Reply #8 on: Oct 07, 2011 04:47 PM »


Not fitting in with the world and the 'in crowd' is actually no great loss and probably a huge blessing in the grand scheme of things.


I agree with you on this BrKhalid in terms of not fitting in with the "in crowd" ... but I think to some extent we do need to fit in with the world, in terms of being functioning members of society.

Im pretty sure you didnt mean we should totally disassociate ourselves from the world? ( I apologize in advance if I misunderstood you)
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« Reply #9 on: Oct 10, 2011 07:44 AM »

Asalaamu Alaikum bro

Quote
Not fitting in with the world and the 'in crowd' is actually no great loss and probably a huge blessing in the grand scheme of things.

I think the meaning here was that it's okay to be different especially when conformity will result in a loss of principles and values.

Being 'different', however is not necessarily the same as estrangement but perhaps that's a topic for another thread bro

Say: "O ye my servants who believe! Fear your Lord, good is (the reward) for those who do good in this world. Spacious is God's earth! those who patiently persevere will truly receive a reward without measure!" [39:10]
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« Reply #10 on: Oct 10, 2011 09:21 AM »


Not fitting in with the world and the 'in crowd' is actually no great loss and probably a huge blessing in the grand scheme of things.


If you dont mind my interference, I guess what the expression means is, it is okay to be seen as strange provided you are doing the right thing. A Muslim in this age that doesn't miss congregational prayers in the mosque is seen by some people as extremist. When you wear complete Hijab, you are also an extremist. So when you are seen as nerd because of a sunnah you maintain then cool down and remember:

Our Prophet saw said that Islam started as something strange and would return to be something strange so in a sense there is actually something quite comforting if one is seen as being 'strange' amongst people.


Not fitting in with the world and the 'in crowd' is actually no great loss and probably a huge blessing in the grand scheme of things.



"Whoever rejects false deities and believes in Allah has grasped a firm handhold which will never break." Q 2:256"
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« Reply #11 on: Oct 10, 2011 01:03 PM »

salam


I reckon this is due to a lack of meaningful role models for our children.


My girls want to be a doctor and also a teacher when she grows up because she wants to help people, and she loves her teacher... And my youngest wants to be an architect, because she has an idea I work around architects so she thinks she will get to go into work with me and play on the computer and eat chocolate cake all day long (dunno where she got that idea from  Undecided), she's promised to build me a princess palace to live in tho, so I'm not going to dissuade her....

Thankfully neither wants to be famous.




Wassalaam

And when My servants question thee concerning Me, then surely I am nigh. I answer the prayer of the suppliant when he crieth unto Me. So let them hear My call and let them trust in Me, in order that they may be led aright. Surah 2  Verse 186
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« Reply #12 on: Oct 10, 2011 02:43 PM »


Not fitting in with the world and the 'in crowd' is actually no great loss and probably a huge blessing in the grand scheme of things.


If you dont mind my interference, I guess what the expression means is, it is okay to be seen as strange provided you are doing the right thing. A Muslim in this age that doesn't miss congregational prayers in the mosque is seen by some people as extremist. When you wear complete Hijab, you are also an extremist. So when you are seen as nerd because of a sunnah you maintain then cool down and remember:

Our Prophet saw said that Islam started as something strange and would return to be something strange so in a sense there is actually something quite comforting if one is seen as being 'strange' amongst people.


Not fitting in with the world and the 'in crowd' is actually no great loss and probably a huge blessing in the grand scheme of things.



 salam

I am reminded of the hadith “Live in this world as a traveller or a stranger”

On the authority of Abdullah ibn Umar (May Allah be pleased with them both), he relates that the Prophet (Peace be upon him) once held my shoulders and said:

“Live in this world as (if you are) a wayfarer or a stranger.” And Abdullah ibn Umar (May Allah be pleased with them both) used to say: “If you live till night, then do not wait for the next day (i.e. do not have hopes that you will live to the next day), and if you wake up in the morning do not have hope that you will live till the night. And take (advantage) from your health before your sickness and take advantage of your life before your death (i.e. do every possible obedience in your life before death comes to you for then no deeds can be performed.)”

[Bukhari and Tirmidhi]

The unity of all, perceptible to even bystanders, is the Oneness that inspired it, a sea without shores, subject me to this sea.
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« Reply #13 on: Nov 02, 2011 02:15 PM »

all posts here are very enlightening ,...thanks all,...and keep doing the good work
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« Reply #14 on: Nov 27, 2011 07:27 AM »

salaam,

Quote
Not a lot of the muslim youth want to to do stuff that is mediocre but important nonetheless, like manning the parking lot at the masjid or some charity event. They all want to get up on the dais and make a fiery speech and walk away with their head held high. Man, what a pity.

SubhanAllah great point.

salaam,
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