In the Name of God, Most Gracious, Most Merciful

Fear and Social & Peer Pressure

Satan is a source of fear (3:175). He uses fear to muddy our mental capacity and introduce doubt and hesitance to us. The result would be nothing but confusion, blurry vision, and inability to make the right decisions. Once we sense fear, we are in Satan's zone as easy targets for all forms of peer and social pressure. We compromise one or few of our Quranic values due to fear of rejection. The need of fitting in society and belonging to majority, irrespective of the cause, lead to violations. Our human weakness (4:28) and the huge gap between our Quranic ethics, as submitters, and the morality of the vast majority around us are catalysts for that.

Fear: The Devil's Tool [3:175] It is the devil's system to instill fear into his subjects. Do not fear them and fear Me instead, if you are believers.

[15:39] He said, "My Lord, since You have willed that I go astray, I will surely entice them on earth; I will send them all astray.
[15:40] "Except those among Your worshipers who are devoted absolutely to You alone."

Quranic knowledge, specially about our most ardent enemy (2:208), comes to our rescue from all forms of pressure. The more we worship and adhere to the teachings of Quran, the more we liberate our souls from fear. We become resistant to Satan, and we sense true strength, dignity, and serenity within ourselves that would eliminate any form of pressure. In Quran, God assures us that the ultimate victors in this life and in the Hereafter are those who know Him, love Him the most (2:165), and are certain about returning to Him (2:4) and about their accountability for everything they have done on earth (69:19-24). It is also stated by God as a matter of fact that those winners are always in the minority. He warned us that we should not get intimidated by the fact we are fewer in numbers. If we truly believe in God, we must believe His words and demonstrate our absolute trust in His promises even if we are a minority in a world full of chaos.

[47:7] O you who believe, if you support GOD, He will support you, and strengthen your foothold.

[3:150] GOD alone is your Lord and Master, and He is the best supporter.

Guaranteed Victory; Here and Forever [40:51] Most assuredly, we will give victory to our messengers and to those who believe, both in this world and on the day the witnesses are summoned.

The Ultimate Winners [28:83] We reserve the abode of the Hereafter for those who do not seek exaltation on earth, nor corruption. The ultimate victory belongs to the righteous. Guaranteed Victory [10:103] We ultimately save our messengers and those who believe. It is our immutable law that we save the believers.

[5:100] Proclaim: "The bad and the good are not the same, even if the abundance of the bad may impress you. You shall reverence GOD, (even if you are in the minority) O you who possess intelligence, that you may succeed."

The Majority of People Do Not Believe [12:103] Most people, no matter what you do, will not believe.

[6:116] If you obey the majority of people on earth, they will divert you from the path of GOD. They follow only conjecture; they only guess.

[3:160] If GOD supports you, none can defeat you. And if He abandons you, who else can support you? In GOD the believers shall trust.

In Quran, God enlightens us through many examples of peer pressure. He has informed us about how our peers will always pressure us to let go of God's guidance and commit idol worship and how they will ridicule our faith. God's messengers and their believing communities have been mocked and persecuted throughout history. We must have an unshakable stand in the face of this social or peer pressure. Knowing the Quranic facts about the illusion of the material and social gains of this life helps us go through these tough situations. We are promised to be the ones who will rejoice eternally.

Social Pressure: A Profound Disaster [29:25] He said, "You worship beside GOD powerless idols due to peer pressure, just to preserve some friendship among you in this worldly life. But then, on the Day of Resurrection, you will disown one another, and curse one another. Your destiny is Hell, wherein you cannot help one another."

[4:89] They wish that you disbelieve as they have disbelieved, then you become equal. Do not consider them friends, unless they mobilize along with you in the cause of GOD. If they turn against you, you shall fight them, and you may kill them when you encounter them in war. You shall not accept them as friends, or allies.

They Ridiculed the Believers [23:109] "A group of My servants used to say, `Our Lord, we have believed, so forgive us and shower us with mercy. Of all the merciful ones, You are the Most Merciful.'
[23:110] "But you mocked and ridiculed them, to the extent that you forgot Me. You used to laugh at them.
[23:111] "I have rewarded them today, in return for their steadfastness, by making them the winners."

[83:29] The wicked used to laugh at those who believed.
[83:30] When they passed by them, they used to poke fun.
[83:31] When they got together with their people, they used to joke.
[83:32] Whenever they saw them, they said, "These people are far astray!
[83:33] "They have no such thing as (invisible) guards."
[83:34] Today, those who believed are laughing at the disbelievers.
[83:35] On luxurious furnishings they watch.
[83:36] Most assuredly, the disbelievers are requited for what they did.

All Messengers Must Be Ridiculed [13:32] Messengers before you have been ridiculed; I permitted the disbelievers to carry on, then I punished them. How terrible was My retribution!

[85:10] Surely, those who persecute the believing men and women, then fail to repent, have incurred the retribution of Gehenna; they have incurred the retribution of burning.

Traditions are also strongly used by Satan to pressure us to violate God's laws. We have to make a clear distinction between God's commands and any societal or cultural customs. Mixing up both is a very common practice that eventually leads to inventing new, man-made religions. Any inherited traditions that contradict God's laws must be discarded without the fear of being different.

Examine All Inherited Information [7:28] They commit a gross sin, then say, "We found our parents doing this, and GOD has commanded us to do it." Say, "GOD never advocates sin. Are you saying about GOD what you do not know?"

[54:3] They disbelieved, followed their opinions, and adhered to their old traditions.

Inherited Traditions Condemned [43:22] The fact is that: they said, "We found our parents carrying on certain practices, and we are following in their footsteps."

Choose Your Friends Carefully [5:77] Say, "O people of the scripture, do not transgress the limits of your religion beyond the truth, and do not follow the opinions of people who have gone astray, and have misled multitudes of people; they are far astray from the right path."

[31:6] Among the people, there are those who uphold baseless Hadith, and thus divert others from the path of GOD without knowledge, and take it in vain. These have incurred a shameful retribution.

Pleasing our families and friends or trying to fit into any specific group should never be at the expense of violating God's teachings and the moral standards He sets for us in the Quran, even if we end up as a minority. An example is given to us in the Quran indicating that Muhammad feared his traditions more than God. He was also enticed by Satan to join the crowd and discriminate among people based on their social status. He was corrected in Quran. On the other hand, Saaleh lost his popularity once he started preaching the message of God alone! He steadfastly persevered and debated with the disbelievers with great logic.

Major Error Committed by Muhammad
Muhammad the Man Disobeys Muhammad the Messenger
[33:36] No believing man or believing woman, if GOD and His messenger issue any command, has any choice regarding that command. Anyone who disobeys GOD and His messenger has gone far astray.
[33:37] Recall that you said to the one who was blessed by GOD, and blessed by you, "Keep your wife and reverence GOD," and you hid inside yourself what GOD wished to proclaim. Thus, you feared the people, when you were supposed to fear only GOD. When Zeid was completely through with his wife, we had you marry her, in order to establish the precedent that a man may marry the divorced wife of his adopted son. GOD's commands shall be done.

[80:1] He (Muhammad) frowned and turned away.
[80:2] When the blind man came to him.
[80:3] How do you know? He may purify himself.
[80:4] Or he may take heed, and benefit from the message.
[80:5] As for the rich man.
[80:6] You gave him your attention.
[80:7] Even though you could not guarantee his salvation.
[80:8] The one who came to you eagerly.
[80:9] And is really reverent.
[80:10] You ignored him.
[80:11] Indeed, this is a reminder.
[80:12] Whoever wills shall take heed.

[11:62] They said, "O Saaleh, you used to be popular among us before this. Are you enjoining us from worshiping what our parents are worshiping? We are full of doubt concerning everything you have told us." The Disbelievers Always Losers [11:63] He said, "O my people, what if I have solid proof from my Lord, and mercy from Him? Who would support me against GOD, if I disobeyed Him? You can only augment my loss.

God expects His servants to steadfastly persevere, trust in Him, set the moral standards of the Quran for everybody around them and feel confident and content being on God's path. They should never lower their wing to adopt values that contradict the Quran but rather stand strong and well-equipped with knowledge for others to catch up with their values.

[11:11] As for those who steadfastly persevere, and lead a righteous life, they deserve forgiveness and a generous recompense.

[19:65] The Lord of the heavens and the earth, and everything between them; you shall worship Him and steadfastly persevere in worshiping Him. Do you know of anyone who equals Him?

[14:12] "Why should we not trust in GOD, when He has guided us in our paths? We will steadfastly persevere in the face of your persecution. In GOD all the trusters shall trust."

Believers Versus Disbelievers
(1) The Believers
[13:19] Is one who recognizes that your Lord's revelations to you are the truth equal to one who is blind? Only those who possess intelligence will take heed.
[13:20] They are the ones who fulfill their pledge to GOD, and do not violate the covenant.
[13:21] They join what GOD has commanded to be joined, reverence their Lord, and fear the dreadful reckoning.
[13:22] They steadfastly persevere in seeking their Lord, observe the Contact Prayers (Salat), spend from our provisions to them secretly and publicly, and counter evil with good. These have deserved the best abode.

[29:43] We cite these examples for the people, and none appreciate them except the knowledgeable.

On the Day of Judgment, those who used to pressure us and ridicule us will hope to join our camp or wish to go back to earth so they would make a better choice, follow our example, and side with us, the believing minority!

The Worst Losers [57:13] On that day, the hypocrite men and women will say to those who believed, "Please allow us to absorb some of your light." It will be said, "Go back behind you, and seek light." A barrier will be set up between them, whose gate separates mercy on the inner side, from retribution on the outer side.

[6:27] If only you could see them when they face the hellfire! They would say then, "Woe to us. Oh, we wish we could go back, and never reject our Lord's revelations, and join the believers."

Peaceful Friday, salaam, and God bless.