In the Name of God, Most Gracious, Most Merciful

Under the Influence

[13:1] A. L. M. R. These (letters) are proofs of this scripture. What is revealed to you from your Lord is the truth, but most people do not believe.

Social pressure has a strong influence on individuals' life, affecting the choices and decisions they have to make throughout their lives. Humans tend to follow the majority or the most popular opinion. The need for social approval and the desire for acceptance lead most people to follow the majority without using their brains, eyes and hearing. Research has showed how people tend to follow a social group or the majority even if it leads to self destructive behavior as substance abuse or other risky behaviors. The lack of skills to cope with social pressure, such as low self esteem, might cause individuals incline towards the approval of the majority.

[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."

[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.

Quran has some examples about the influence of social pressure on individuals, including messengers.

[17:73] They almost diverted you from the revelations we have given you. They wanted you to fabricate something else, in order to consider you a friend. [17:74] If it were not that we strengthened you, you almost leaned towards them just a little bit.

[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.

[2:249] .....Those who were conscious of meeting GOD said, "Many a small army defeated a large army by GOD's leave. GOD is with those who steadfastly persevere."

[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."

[11:63] He said, "O my people, what if I have solid proof from my Lord, and mercy from Him? Who would

The Most Gracious has enlightened His servants not to be impressed by the most popular and not to be intimidated by the majority. It is ONLY the divine truth that rules when it comes to making choices. Why should we get impressed or intimidated by a disbelieving majority, or by "believers" who are mostly unappreciative idol worshipers?

[12:103] Most people, no matter what you do, will not believe.

[12:106] The majority of those who believe in GOD do not do so without committing idol worship.

[19:73] When our revelations are recited to them, clearly, those who disbelieve say to those who believe, "Which of us is more prosperous? Which of us is in the majority?"

[16:83] They fully recognize GOD's blessings, then deny them; the majority of them are disbelievers.

[40:61] GOD is the One who designed the night so you can rest in it, and the day lighted. GOD bestows many blessings upon the people, but most people are not thankful.

[34:13] They made for him anything he wanted - niches, statues, deep pools, and heavy cooking pots. O family of David, work (righteousness) to show your appreciation. Only a few of My servants are appreciative.

Believers need to worry about developing their own souls. Each person is divinely gifted and fully equipped by the Best Creator to independently make his/her own personal decisions and to be accountable for that. While we are blessed with the ability to redeem our own souls, we are reassured that we are not held responsible for others.

[53:38] No soul bears the sins of another soul.
[53:39] Every human being is responsible for his own works.

[6:164] Say, "Shall I seek other than GOD as a lord, when He is the Lord of all things? No soul benefits except from its own works, and none bears the burden of another. Ultimately, you return to your Lord, then He informs you regarding all your disputes."

[5:105] O you who believe, you should worry only about your own necks. If the others go astray, they cannot hurt you, as long as you are guided. To GOD is your ultimate destiny, all of you, then He will inform you of everything you had done.

Our accountability is described in Quran leaving no doubt that we are judged individually and our necks are sticking out no matter what we do or not do. Only our righteous deeds will save us - no family, no friends and no intercession. Before we lean towards the majority, we need to remember that we will get resurrected as individuals, meet God as individuals and face our eternal fate as individuals.

[74:11] Let Me deal with one I created as an individual.

[19:95] All of them will come before Him on the Day of Resurrection as individuals.

[6:94] "You have come back to us as individuals, just as we created you the first time, and you have left behind what we provided for you. We do not see with you the intercessors that you idolized and claimed that they will help you. All ties among you have been severed; the idols you set up have abandoned you."

Secure and certain believers on the straight path trust in God, and implore Him alone to enlighten them. They abhor & reject conjecture, appreciate knowledge and are eager to analyze, verify, learn, share & embrace what God teaches them. They might come under the influence of the ignorant or doubting majority. Social pressure and intimidation by such Satanic majority becomes a diverting force when it comes to accepting new knowledge. This is when believers need to seek refuge in God, stay strong and uphold the proven word of God as the ultimate reference even if they are in the minority. We will continue learning, and new knowledge will keep on coming as long as we have this dynamic and eternal proven scripture and despite the influence of an ignorant majority.

[6:148] The idol worshipers say, "Had GOD willed, we would not practice idolatry, nor would our parents, nor would we prohibit anything." Thus did those before them disbelieve, until they incurred our retribution. Say, "Do you have any proven knowledge that you can show us? You follow nothing but conjecture; you only guess."

[30:58] Thus, we have cited for the people in this Quran all kinds of examples. Yet, no matter what kind of proof you present to the disbelievers, they say, "You are falsifiers."
[30:59] GOD thus seals the hearts of those who do not know.
[30:60] Therefore, you shall steadfastly persevere - for GOD's promise is the truth - and do not be intimidated by those who have not attained certainty.

[10:82] GOD establishes the truth with His words, despite the criminals.

[9:32] They want to put out GOD's light with their mouths, but GOD insists upon perfecting His light, in spite of the disbelievers.

[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."

[17:36] You shall not accept any information, unless you verify it for yourself. I have given you the hearing, the eyesight, and the brain, and you are responsible for using them.

May God guide us to make the right choices and stay on His straight path. May He augment our guidance, strengthen our hearts and increase our knowledge. May He protect us from falling under the influence of an ignorant majority and may He guide us to do the righteous works that please Him alone.

[17:80] ...."My Lord, admit me an honorable admittance, and let me depart an honorable departure, and grant me from You a powerful support."

Peaceful Friday, salaam and God bless.