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How to Utilize Our Free Time

How to Utilize Our Free Time

Publisher: Al Balagh Foundation


How to Utilize Our Free Time

Author: AlBalagh Foundation



This versionis published on behalf of www.alhassanain.org/english

The composing errorsare not corrected .

Table of Contents

Introduction 5

What is Age? 6

Is it Possible to Leave the Vessel of Life Empty? 7

The Importance of Time: 8

Wasted Time and Useful Time: 10

Is Play Forbidden? Who says this? 11

Organizing Time 12

A Work Schedule 14

First: Positive Subjects 15

Secondly: Negative Subjects: 16

Free Time 17

Utilizing Free Time 19

1- Reading: 20

2-Attending Lectures and Seminars: 22

3- Listening and Watching: 23

4- The Computer and Information Network: 25

5- Learning Skills: 27

6- The Means of Relaxations and Enter-tainment: 28

Sleeping and Staying up at Night 30

A Final Word 31


From the time man is born on this earth, his age begins to decrease gradually. This means that each day that falls away from his age, is detached from the calendar of his life like the pages that fall down one by one until thetime which the tree of his growth will be stripped out of its last leaves.

Indeed, our age decreases, not increases, as, in our estimation, it apparently seems to do. The burning hours of age are like a candle dropping its melted tears. What burns of it, warns of the approach of its endtill it reaches the moment at which it emits its last breath.

What is Age?

Age looks like a temporal vessel, containing the days of our life. Its quality and the way it is filledis in our hands, not in the hands of others. People differ; some fill it up with honey, others fill it with poison, still others mix these together while yet others, leave it empty.

Is it Possible to Leave the Vessel of Life Empty?

We doubt in this. Even our free days spent in amusement and vanity fill the age vessel with sighs, sorrows, and regrets in a Day called by Allah, the Almighty, “The Day ofSorrow and Regret.” It is a day in which all peopleare gathered in the presence of the Lord of the Worlds - from Adam up to the last creature - in order to be judged on how they spent “their lives” which is entrusted as a deposit with them.

Did they spend it with seriousness, striving, and performing righteous and good deeds?Or did they spend it by doing vicious and bad actions that caused long and permanent sorrows and regrets? Or did they mix a good deed with an evil deed and in their actions, were they among the losers, like a businessman who spends all his life in trading and at the end, finds himself bankrupt?!

The Importance of Time:

If we look for the best one who evaluates time for us, do we see other than the maker of time, Himself, and is it not Allah, Exalted and Glory be He?!

Indeed, this delicate division of moments, minutes, hours, days, weeks, months, and years, is just like a cultivated field and the farmer isme or you . According to the endeavor of each farmer, the harvestwill be yielded .And it is during the time of harvest that an active and diligent farmer will be pleased, and a lazy and inactive farmer will be driven away.

How beautifully Imam Ali (a.s .) describes it: “This world is the plantation for the Hereafter.” Whoever grows an apple, he will surely harvest an apple.And whoever grows an onion, he will surely harvest an onion.And whoever grows a flower, he will surely harvest a flower.And whoever grows a thorn, he will surely harvest a thorn.And whoever grows laziness, he will surely harvest regret.

Verily, Allah, the Almighty is the One Who divides the dawn, afternoon, day and night in order to draw our attention to the thing divided, is of great importance. These numerous expressions regarding the measurement of time are nothing but small vessels within the great vessel of age. Perhaps, the moment you are presently in, will say farewell to you, and enter in the list of your account a reserved action and maybe it leaves you a loan from that account.And who knows that one day will come, for any of us, in which the chief of the bank will reject us and we will leave, disappointed, because there is nothing in our account book!

On that day, it is impossible to start again from the beginning because it is too late and we missed the opportunity. Shall we be pleased to return bankrupt and blame ourselves? Or shall we see working in order to add another fund and act according to the slogan which says: “Save your white piaster for your black (difficult) day”, which means: Keep your righteous deeds for a Day in which wealth will not avail, nor sons, save him who comes to Allah with a sound heart.

Surely we will not find in the Qur'an an expression more eloquent than the following saying of Allah: “So, he who does an atom-weight of good shall see it. And he who does an atom-weight of evil shall see it.” Holy Qur'an (99: 7-8)

Menwill be shown their deeds in the Resurrection by being made to taste of their fruits, but they can also see the good or evil of their actions in this life. Good and evil, when practiced on a large scale, bring their reward or requital in this life, as well. Note that the words here are “he who does”, and thus, include both the Muslim and the non-Muslim. Even a non-Muslim who does an atom's weight of good will have his reward, and a Muslim who does an atom's weight of evil will berequited for it.

Then,some one may askus: How much is an atom's weight on the scale of time? Is it a moment or less than that?However it is considered, it is a unit of measure in its utmost smallness, and this means that even the littlest deed of good to which one does not pay attention to, will be fruitful during the time in which a flood will overcome the people, and the smallest deed of evil, will be destructive but the good doers are saved from it.

Surely, time is Allah's grace blessed on all people.It is the white papers on which they record our deeds, be it good or evil, and people are responsible for it on the Resurrection Day.In this regard, Allah's Apostle, Muhammad (s.a.w .) says: “Not a foot of a servant (of Allah) on the Resurrection Day, will move before he is asked about five things: 'His age and how he spent it, his youth and how he wore it out, his wealth and how he earned it and on what he spent it and about his love towards us,Ahlul -Bait (the Prophet's household).'“

He (s.a.w .), also,says: “Seize the opportunity of five things before you lose these five: Your youth before your old age; your health before your illness; your leisure before your occupation; your life before your death and your riches before your poverty.” It is worthy of observation that the question of age is repeated twice regarding age, in general, and about youth, in particular, due to the importance of the stage of youth, as well as it being the stage of striving, sacrificing and offering.

For instance, when a student surely knows that a question will come on the next examination, he will prepare himself for answering it, otherwise, he will lose a preciousopportunity which cannot be substituted, with anything else.

The question is about Resurrection Day - clear and obvious - and the examination will certainly come: What is your age and how did you spend it, and what was your youth and how did you wear it out? The question remains tobe answered by each of us.

Wasted Time and Useful Time:

If we look at the amount of time we spend uselessly and try to make a simple calculation as to how many long hours go in vain either in nonsense chatter or in loitering along the streets, or wandering in front of commercial shops or participating in parties which have no limit and without knowing that we are committing “the crimes of futility” against ourselves with the most precious of what Allah has blessed us with, what will be the total?.

Just think of these images, in which we live, and, which occur perhaps daily:

- A young man may take his car or his father's car, sometimes, accompanied by his friends, to drive around the streets, squares, and roads without any aim and destination.

- A girl or girls may wander for long hours - perhaps other than shopping - in front of shop windows in hopes of desire.

- Young men may play football for hours on end and even though eventually they quit, they repeat playing once,twice and perhaps three times.

- Young men sit in coffee houses smoking, chattering,backbiting and laughing loud.

- Others may stand in long lines waiting to buy their needs or waiting for buses while casting their naive looks here and there.

- Otherswho stay up at night may play cards, or chess, or sit before computers for unlimited periods or use the Internet to the extent of addiction without caring for the time which they waste in this regard.

Is Play Forbidden ? Who says this?

The subject, here, does not concern the forbidding of a thing or its lawfulness. It may be a thing lawful, but because it exceeds its properbounds it is disliked and dispraised. As Allah, Glory and Exalted be He, created all things of great significance, it is essential thatevery thing in our life have a specific time, otherwise, excessiveness, instead, can be invested in theaffairs which are important and useful. Therefore, itis said :

“What a difference there is between two kinds of actions. An act whose pleasure passes away, but its distressful consequence remains, and the act whose hardship passes away, but its reward stays.” Then, try for one day only to count your wasted time and, surely, you will be surprised at the results.

While we read the bewildering results, let us consider, for example, that there are prisoners who wish to return to their free life to fill up every moment of their life with science and action, and it is nothing but the feeling that their free time passed away in vain.

And let us, also, consider that there are some people who wish that their days were more than 24 hours and, if they could, would borrow time from those who do not care for time.

Such people - the owners of useful time -have times in which they rest, and, at the same time, they renew their activity in order to continue their work, again, with a high spirit and prosperity.

We can make use of this opinion and consider that time takes its longevity or brevity from what we fill it up with of deeds. A quick glance at the life of great men and theirsuccess, reveals an important secret of their prosperity. That is the investment of their time in the best way. Rarely will we find among them those who waste their time in vain. The well-known inventor of electricity, 'Edison', is said to have never endured time,but, he used to swallow it up. He used to work, constantly, as if he wanted to achieve in an hour what others achieved in 10 hours. He disliked being absent in solving one such practical question but, it caused him to waste one week in the problem and was eventually futile.

It is known about various great scholars that they used not to sleep at night, except a few hours,for the purpose of making use of additional hours of their days. These people are they who always remember the saying of the poet:

“The beating of man's heart tells him that life is but minutes and moments, therefore, keep these memories for yourself after your death. Surely, memories, for man, are but the lifetime of a moment.”

Organizing Time

Zaid used to complain about the shortness of his time, and became surprised at his friends who did many things like studying, practicing theirhobbies and meeting their friends even though their time was the same.

One day, he presented this question to some of his friends. They told him: “The matter is clear. Organize your time, so that it will seem to be more.”

For this reason, somehadiths (Islamic traditions) have divided time into hours and an hour, here, means time units and not sixty minutes. This means that there should be time for every action. Imam Ali (a.s .) is quoted to have said:

“The believer's time has three units: The period when he is in communion with Allah; the period when he manages his livelihood; and the period when he is free to enjoy what is lawful and pleasant…” Otherhadiths add another unit and, that is, for visiting trustworthy friends who know our shortcomings. Commenting on the period of enjoying what is lawful and pleasant itcan be said : In this period (of enjoyment), you will be able to perform other deeds.

Though this division gives man specific periods for his essential needs, it isnot an inactive prescription. It may happen that man's needs become more numerous and varied, but the aim at the division of time is to organize it in such a way that an action does not extend over another action, or to use up all time while other actions remain un performed or left half performed.

Therefore, striving towards gaining one's livelihood is required to meet his material needs; approaching to Allah, through worshipping and glorification is required as a spiritual need; visiting one's friends is required as a social need; enjoying what is lawful is required as psychological need; and besides these hours, there should be another important period for seeking science and knowledge in order to meet one's theological and ideological needs.

What is important to mention here isthat there should be a balance between these units of time in a way in which worldly actions should not cause us to forget the deeds relating to the Hereafter .And the wise among us are the ones who make all our deeds an obedience to Allah, the Almighty; even worldly actions. However, who sits before a computer without previously deciding how much time he should spend in that sitting, will surely findhimself still sitting before its magic, small screen, after many hours passed.

And he who lets the doors of the meeting with his friend be wide open, will surely see that some conversations lead yet to others, and the meeting which was supposed to be finished in half an hour, lasts for two hours or more.

Indeed, organizing time, as we learn from the schedules of prayer, the appointed times of fasting,iftar (breaking of the fast) and the appointed days of pilgrimage (hajj), introduce us to the following benefits:

1. The abundance of time andblessings which were unknown before the organization of time.

2. It drives away from us both disorganization and the confusion in which we liveas a result of the penetration of time and its negligence.

3. It gives us a respected personality by our friends, companions and those surrounding us.

4. It makes us live in the state of psychological contentment and spontaneous happiness in what we have achieved.

5. It makes us control time and notbe controlled by time, itself.

A Work Schedule

Each of us is able to prepare a sheet of paper for himself and in which he records the timetable for his daily work. It is necessary to acknowledge the seriousness of observing the articles of the schedule; otherwise, it will become mere ink on paper. This method teaches us the following:

1. Time should be organized ina such way as not to be scattered in digressions and forsaken conclusions, and where one can be wholly engaged in a particular work which, as a result, has anaffect on the rest of the work.

2. The above mentioned paper acts as a calendar which reminds us of the deeds which a wait us to be performed without delay, because tomorrow will impose on us a list of other new deeds, and a moment of our daily schedule will surely be affected on the timetable of tomorrow.

3. It is possible to schedule even preparatory time for each action. This may seem difficult because it is impossible to estimate the time of some actions properly and exactly, but, with the passing of days, it will become a beautiful habit with which onegets used to.

4. There is no harm in putting aside time we call “free” just for unexpected emergencies.

As Muslims, our responsibility is not limited onlyto worldly deeds, and, therefore, our Islamic schedule cannot be separated from our ordinary schedule except in some obligations. Our timecan be organized in the following way mentioned by one of the supplications (du'as ):

“…(Oh Allah) make us prosperous today, tonight, and in all days to use good and reject evil, give thanks for Your blessings, follow the Prophetic traditions, avoid innovations, enjoin good and forbid evil, protect Islam, debase and humiliate falsehood, assist and strengthen truth, guide those who go astray, help the oppressed, and comprehend the regretful.”

Indeed, this schedule, though it is full of righteous deeds and the rejecting of evil, is not necessary to be a schedule for one day, rather, it is a typical Islamic day which needs determination, practice, and prosperity and guidance from Allah, the Exalted and the Almighty.

This schedulecan be divided into its positive and negative subjects:

First: Positive Subjects

1. (Using of good): It should not be only a sentimental trend inclining towardslabour , rather, it should be changed into an action which benefits others.

2. (Giving ThanksFor Blessings): This means to reciprocate benevolence with benevolence, kindness with kindness and good with good. He who does not thank the creation (i.e. man), never thanks the Creator (Allah), and the best practical thanks is “Give thanks, O people of David!' Holy Qur'an (34: 13)

3. (Following Prophetic Traditions): Because this is the right path brought by the Holy Apostle, Muhammad (s.a.w .), whosays: “Say: If you love Allah, follow me: Allah will love you.” Holy Qur'an (3: 31)

4. (EnjoiningGood ): This because it is the way to increase the arena of doing good and the spreading of reform and benevolence in a society, which may positively reflect on the happiness of the society and its strength and welfare.

5. (Protecting Islam): We should defend Islam and protect its principles due to its being the symbol of our dignity and the righteousness of ourreligion which represents our existence and identity.

6. (Assisting and Strengthening Truth): To strengthen truth if it prevailsso as to spread it throughout the world even more, and to support it if it is threatened by falsehood and oppression.

7. (Guiding theStrayers ): To guide through different methods of guidance the one who goes astray from the right path and to inform him his secure place if he deviated his destination.

8. (Helping the Oppressed): This should be done by what Allah, the Most High, has granted us of capabilities suchas: Wealth or responsibility or sciences because among the necessities of having belief in religion is to give assistance to the needy.“So woe to the praying ones, who are unmindful of their prayer! Who do (good) to be seen, and refrain from acts ofkindness! ” Holy Qur'an (107: 4-7)

9. (Comprehending the Regretful): A poor man looks like a blind man who sees nothing but that of meeting his own needs, and his regret will come by the fulfillment of those needs.

Secondly: Negative Subjects:

1. (Rejecting Evil): To give up evil means opening the way for goodness tobe spread and evil to be straitened and decreased.

2. (Avoiding Innovations): Because innovation (bid'ah ) means to insertsomething which is not related to religion in the name of religion. It is a misrepresentation of Divine instructions and Prophetic Traditions (sunnah ) and invents that which has not been said by Allah and His Apostle relating to religion, whereas, religion, itself, is innocent of it.

3. (Forbidding What is Evil): This is done by any means be it by hand or by tongue or by heart, so that the followers of evil should not feel compelled to continue, where they might spread their abominations among the people.

One who observes this schedule, both positive and negative, will find that there is a balance in the movement of Muslim youth, demolishing evils and performing good deeds. In this regard, aHadith , describing a true believer, says:

“Goodness is expected from him (a believer) and he is safe from evil.”

Free Time

First we ask this question: Is there anything called free time?

We can surely say: No, becauseman when he finishes a work, will be engaged in another. It may be less or more important than before.Even sports, itself, is an unproductive work though it is productive in its psychological output for a player.

Islam - as we mentioned previously - gives man the time for which he refreshes and amuses himself and his family and enjoys its pleasures and delights. It even gives this time more value and importance, because it is a supporter of the periods of work and worship.

But, our discussion about free time is not that which gives man renewed energy, rather it is that a wasted time in which the youth not only scorn their vital and great responsibilities, but also, live in the state of useless, negative, and wanton time.

Mostly, free time falls into disorder when we waste our time and neglect its value, whereas, it can be an opportunity for seeking science, or for learning some new skills, or for correcting wrong conceptions, or for helping Allah's creatures, or for meeting the needs of a believer, or to be acquainted with the issues of the Muslim world, or for developing what we have obtained of previous knowledge, or to become acquainted with a new friend seeking Allah's pleasure, or to strengthen an old relationship with a friend, and so on.

Even if an unexploited time is considered out of the scope of age, because the real age is the age of that farm which was previously mentioned in aHadith , is it wise for a man who owns a wide land arable for agriculture, to leave it unplanted?!

In this regard, one scientistsays: I read more and if I become tired of reading, I take a rest by reading. He explains this by saying:I incline to reading scientific books, but when I feel exhausted of reading, I turn to read literary or history books in order to ease the tiredness of scientific reading.

Look at those who are around you. Do not you respect the one who stands before a shop waiting for his turn, or at a station waiting for a bus, or in a clinic holding a book in his hand and reading it?!

Do not you respect a man going on his way remembering a poem which he memorized before, or a verse of the Qur'an he does not want to forget, or repeats some glorifications which increase and strengthen his relation with Allah, the Most High?!

Do not you show respect for a person who holds in his pocket a small notebook in which he records a proverb or a saying he read in a newspaper, or an information he got by chance, or an important number he found here and there which helps him in quoting what he says, or he records an idea which comes suddenly to his mind and is afraid to miss or forget it?

Surely, telephones now exist which can record messages, and wall secretaries are placed in front of houses to be used by visitors to record their notes in case of not seeing the owner of the house. These are clear evidences for the attention of the owner of the house as to what has happened during his absence.

A person who daily reads newspapers; follows newscasts and visits sites on the Internet or is acquainted with what happens around himself in this ever-changing world, is a man who is careful not to cast his time aside like a disregarded paper into a wastebasket. He feels that heis cut off from the world if he does not keep up on the movement of the world, and if his steadyvigile is stopped, surely he feels loneliness as if he has lost something precious.

The people of an American town discovered that an illiterate woman learned how to read and write late and without a teacher. When she was asked about this, she answered: Indeed, I felt the loss of precious time that I had missed, therefore, I tried to compensate forit and, thus, I used to eavesdrop and steal a look at my small daughter while she was studying and, with her, I used tosavour all her lessons.

Thus, we should eliminate the following expressions from the dictionary of our life:

- I missed the train!

- What is the use of workingnow. Indeed,I have lost various opportunities, and chance always opposes me.

- Many people precededme in that endeavor and I have no place, now.

- I tried and I failed. There is no reason to repeat the same experiment…etc.

We should replace theabove mentioned expressions with the following: There is always time to work before death.

But , regarding “compensation of wasted time”; this term is not correct.Because wasted time cannot be compensated, nor can it be delayed. Wishing the period of youth to come back after passing away is a falsedesire which is captured only by poets and there is no possibility to achieve it in reality. Nevertheless, it is possible for youth to avoid additional negligence, and excessive loss by regretting and utilizing what remains of their lives, and not to cause their lives to be a plunder of play, levity and idle relaxation.

Through experiments, it is proved thatlaziness, unemployment and leisure factors cause deviations and corruption. In this respect, a poet says:

“Surely, youth, spare time and luxury are causes of corruption for man and what corruption they are.” Weshould, also, differentiate between spare time, in which there is no use, and a dedication to review, self-criticize, and be alone with one's self, or to take permission in order to renew one's activity. This is a part of work, not free time. It is something desirable due to its being thetime which distributes more abundance to other times.

Utilizing Free Time

Leisure is defined by those concerned as free time and in which one is not connected by the necessity of achieving a specified goal.It is the time in which man frees himself from any commitments and necessities of life, and spends it in any way he wishes . Regarding students and youth, it includes the period of their summer and winter holidays,week ends , time and permission out of their working hours, in addition to free time secured by the era of modern technology.

The following are somesuggestions which include some means of utilizing free time, and we hope that our young men and women will find in them an assistance to their empty hours:

1- Reading:

It has been said that the importance of books has deteriorated during the past two decades competition with other media such as: Radio, TV, newspapers, computer, and the net work of information, but books still keep their value because of the following reasons:

1. All other competitions depend on them, and the most successful programs and investigational articles take their knowledge from books them-selves.

2. The ability of controlling the book, such as: Selecting it, or borrowing and copying it. It is up to the reader's taste, his desire and needs to control the kind of requested book in any time and any place.

3. Using a book as a source for writing, and as long as there are researches and studies, sources and references will not someday benull and void . Even, we observe that various CD's disks, in reality, are archived books.

As long as a book has all these values and its importance has decreased among students and youth to the extent that they turn away from it, it was still the right of a poet to say:

“I am the one who exchanged books with friends, but, I found no friend but books.”

And we should not forget that the profit we gain from the pleasure of reading and its advantage cannot be truly appreciated except by those readers who are fond of books and have established, them, a long companionship. If we miss this, it is because ofbeing overwhelmed by thesis and competitions, which we have mentioned before. Among the best ways to fillleisure time is by diverse and useful reading. In addition, there are someobservations which help in deepening the understanding of the usefulness of reading.

They are:

1- To read what fulfills our ideological,spiritual and psychological needs. We should not force ourselves on to be against reading like a man who forces himself away from food and we should not desert books on the plea that we lack the dedication to reading, because once separation occurs, it is difficult to unite it again.

2- Always keep your pen with you while reading in order to take some notes on some concepts oropinions which may help you later. You can, also, underline some important concepts or mark them with a phosphorous pen so that you can review them easily without the need to read the whole book.

3- Reading may open for you, unexpected ideas in a book, so, do not miss them and write them down immediately, because they may benefit you one day in your ideological, cultural, and literary projects in the future.

4- It is better to depend on cards of research in writing down your information including the name of the source from which you cited it, the author's name, the date of its edition and the number of the page.

Nevertheless, reading does not only to apply books, but also, includes newspapers, magazines and journals and whatis daily offered by newsstands . They present news and information items about the different affairs and the fields of life of which no young man or woman who wants to live fully their age can avoid. In this regard, a Prophetichadith says: “Theone who is well acquainted with the affairs of his time, is secure against afflictions, conspiracies, and confusions.”

One of the fruits of reading is that of writing. During leisure time, young men and women can practice their hobbies, such as writing, be it an article or story, or poetry and so on, and present them to people of experience. By this way, they can improve their writing ability.

2-Attending Lectures and Seminars:

One of the useful ways to fill our free time is to become acquainted with cultural and scientific weekly programs and literary gatherings. What is presented of lectures and seminars can help us enrich our knowledge and develop our ability in dialogue,criticism and diverse opinions.

And , if we participate in putting forward a question to a lecturer or the participants in a seminar, surely we will make use of it and benefit others as well. In this respect, ahadith says: “Three are rewarded: The questioner, the questioned and the listener of them,” and thus, our social and cultural personality develops and thrives.

Our observation of the way of asking a question, the way of dialogue, interposing and directing a question, teach us the manner of dialogue and how to pay attention to points which stir further discussions of subjects or problems. It is better to take our diary with us to write down the most prominent opinions introduced in a lecture or a seminar so that we may keep it as a culturalsubject which may benefit us one day in time of need.

In these meetings and sessions, we may, also, become acquainted with a great number of educated people, writers, authors, and personalities who participate in such cultural,ideological and literary activities.

3- Listening and Watching:

The four mass media (radio, T.V., cinema and theater) are not only means of play and amusement, but also, they are instruments of education. An education through themmay be performed intentionally or unintentionally, i.e., it comes directly or indirectly which obligates us to distinguish and diagnose it from audible and visible items.

What is shown and broadcasted through these media, such as, local subjects and other imported programs, are not all useful for listening and watching; some are useful and some are harmful; while yet others are poisonous.

Before thesedouble edged weapons, we should have a strong and intelligent sense in order to separate the correct from wrong, and the well from the unwell, otherwise, we will be victims of such informational schemes which are directed by specialized authorities, biased and purposeful agencies and net works.

And do not be surprised if we know that there are educational, informational and social scientists, and psychologists who present, for us, their audible and visible goods covered by beautiful papers, but, in reality, they are harmful in Muslim markets. They often aim at invading our houses because the barriers - by the development of these means and their advancement -are indeed dissolved and cause the information media to enter every house without asking permission.

These equipments, developed very quickly and greatly in the form of astronautics, video tapes, cassettes, anddisks which are cheap and simply transported, but they are heavy in presentation and burdens, and cannot be dominated by remote control.But , we, as Muslims, must control them with our desires, education, cultural, social and religious backgrounds which do not permit the watching of dissolute, profligate and trite films because they do not address anything except sexual and material desires and, sometimes, they intentionally aim at corrupting morals, distorting concepts, and turning values upside down.

And because these equipments are double-edged weapons i.e. they carry both evil and good inside their propagations, it is necessary to use their good things and avoid their evils. An example of the process of filling temporary leisure time would like the process of filling up intestinal emptiness; is it wise to enter everything into our stomach for allaying our hunger even if it is dirty, poisonous, dangerous and threatens our health, and safety?!

As a result of this, it is incumbent on us - onlookers and listeners - to safeguard, as much as possible, our characteristics, identity and our cultural and religious obligations. Therefore, we should judge and evaluate what we hear and what we see according to our ideology, culture,education and experience, otherwise, we will be turned into prisoners of these media which will lead us to dangerous crossroads.

Submissive sitting, for long hours before a T.V. motivates numbness and wasting oftime and which causes disorder in the routine of other daily programs and perhaps causes ideological paralysis . Thus, itis recommended for each of us to distribute the hours of his/her watching in a purposed and selective manner.

The psychologists confirm that television - in itself- does not create the problems of aggression and deviation,but, it is created bymiseducation by one's own family, relatives and friends.So , aggressive children and youth choose aggressive programs to support their former directions and television becomes a supporter towards deviation, and violence.

And though these media have numerous advantages which mostly meet each other, some researchers have studied both advantages and disadvantages of television. The following are some disadvantages that they diagnosed:

1.Killing time, wasting age, and engaging both individuals and a nation (ummah ) against performing their significant responsibilities.

2.Transfering irregular and deviated environments to our society, and imposing evil and degraded moral patterns on people.

3. Building a corrupted culture in the minds of the youth and showing the dissolute at the forefront of a society as if it is the norm.

4. Misrepresenting the contemporary affairs of the Muslims and demolishing of the obstacles that existbetween us (Muslims) and the enemies of ourummah , represented by the Jewish Zionists .

But , still, we do not deprive ourselves of useful radio and T.V. programs which include scientific, cultural, political, literary, social, economical and health programs, particularly those programs which present the problems and afflictions from which our society suffers and which are discussed by experts, specialists, and professionals.

4- The Computer and Information Network:

When computers came into existence, they not only filled up the free time of the youth, but also, occupied their time completely to the extent that they haveno associate nor rival. Indeed, they exceeded all the means of entertainment and play before it. A computer, in this respect, is like other media. It canbe used for the benefit of people or can be changed into a tool of corruption and destruction.

It is unjust for this active and brilliant invention, which has numerous capabilities, tobe used only as a tool of entertainment and play. In it, there are programs prepared for teaching accounting, business administration, and the principles of driving a car, or learning grammar of a certain language. In addition to this, there are various other services which are too numerous to mention them, like the fields of typing, handwriting, designing, layout, drawing, painting and others.And the programs on the internet are wider in their content regarding science, information, politics, and culture, as well as, in different fields of life.

From the blue screen of the computer man become educated by its high degree of flexibility, speed of processing data and the capability of diverse coverage: Geographical, theological, social, development of positive thinking, deepening of the concept of participation, non-acceptance of intuitions (self-evident truth), negative convincing and not surrendering to simplicity, all are blessings but at the same time foster indignation.

It is upon us to make use of such blessings in the bestway, otherwise, we will be afflicted with its indignation, particularly regarding the imported games which bear, in their undisclosed contents information and morals which differ from our Islamic morals and customs.

Therefore, it is obligatory for us to have spontaneous and supervisory over setting certain conditions whichshould be observed in such games. Among themare: They should bear human characteristics and have scientific value. They should be diversified and not be only for entertainment. They should not create enmity among the players, nor contradict the instructions of our religion,morals and customs.

However, setting long hours in front of this equipment, which has severe temptation exceeds television in its open and extended hours of sitting and which has made some countries, like Sweden, to specify the age of permission for using such games. They become concerned with the necessity of not introducing the young to the temptations of these games for fear of their education and the specified time in which theyare allowed to use the computer for the sake of entertainment.

Indeed, the harm of being addicted to the computer as a tool of entertainment is not less than wasting time watching a well-known game of football or being engaged in watching videos and television. Among the dangers of this invention, which has become a member of our family, is the decreasing of our circle of friends or social relations. The youth think that this invention has already achieved their wish and they are in no need of friends,but, this becomes far from the reality of a society and people. Even the dialogue sites of the network of the Internet cannot achieve the same advantages and medicalbenefits which we gain from direct friendly meetings in face to face visits.

We should, also, know that even those feelings, and emotions andexcitements which we get through the computer screen cannot be a complete substitute for direct meetings which contain warm feelings and continuity, activity and close acquaintance with others. Magnetized disks - with the exception of their importance - will not replacebooks which are considered our companion in everywhere; at home, in school, in the car, in the airplane, on a ship, etc. The same thing concerning personal exchanges on the network sites will not be a perfect substitute for direct friendly visits whatever the attractive service or qualifications they add to it by its producers and propagandists.