Attending a gathering where reprehensible acts are taking place

Reference: Fataawa Noor ‘alad-Darb – Question No.6421, Page 249, Volume 12

Question: Is it prohibited for a person to remain in a place where reprehensible acts are taking place?

Response: Yes, it is not permissible for person to remain in a gathering where reprehensible acts are taking place, unless he is able to put a stop to it, in which case he must remain there until he has put a stop to it. If, however, he is unable to do so, then he must leave that place; this is based upon the statement of Allaah (Tabaaraka wa Ta’aala):

{And it has already come down to you in the Book that when you hear the verses of Allah [recited], they are denied [by them] and ridiculed; so do not sit with them until they enter into another conversation. Indeed, you would then be like them.}, soorah an-Nisaa, aayah 140

…meaning that if you remain [there], then you are like them in sin.

So it is obligatory upon the person to detest the reprehensible act according to his ability; and this is based upon the saying of the Prophet (sal-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam):

«Whoever amongst you sees a reprehensible act, then let him change it with is hand [by taking action], and if he is unable [to do that], then with his tongue [by speaking out], and if he is unable [to do that], then with his heart [by at hating it and believing it is wrong], and that is the lowest level of eemaan» – transmitted by Muslim.

And it is absolutely not possible for a person to detest [a reprehensible act] with the heart and [then] continue to remain in the place where it is taking place; that is because to detest with the heart is to dislike the reprehensible act, and to leave the place [where it is taking place] if he is unable to put a stop to it.

Abu 'Abdullaah

About Abu 'Abdullaah

- from London, UK. He is a graduate of the Islaamic University of Madeenah, having graduated from the Institute of Arabic Language, and later the Faculty of Sharee'ah in 2004.