Afro-Cinema and Islamic teachings

Afro-Cinema and Islamic teachings

Naija movies over-emphasis on witchcraft and sorcery as a means of solving the challenges of life is against Islamic teachings. If anything, they are planting seeds of/and promote shirk (associating others with Allah)

Afro-Cinema or popularly referred to as ‘Naija’ (Nigeria) is now the in-thing in terms of TV entertainment such that nearly all local TV stations seem to be under pressure to source and satisfy their audience never ending appetite of these episodes.

In fact, some TV stations have dedicated channels specially for these type of movies.

From a random observation; it seems that these movies have something that clicks with women-who form the bulk of the audience; irrespective of religion and age.

However, a sizeable number of Muslim men talked to, showed no interest in watching them.

True that these movies have what it takes to be termed as great films, it is their over emphasis on witchcraft and sorcery that is of concern to Marhaba Life and Style; and its impact on gullible Muslim women seeking ‘creative ideas’ on how to handle life’s challenges.

According to Islamic teachings, witchcraft and sorcery are tantamount to shirk (associating others with Allah) and is thus deemed as a great sin.  

Further, if previous media reports are anything to go by, there is need for concern since as observed; people tend to imitating what they see from movies/programmes.

Past media reports have it on record instances of kids performing deadly wrestling maneuvers on their friends with devastating consequences following what they saw on TV.

As Marhaba Life and Style found out, opinion on the ground is divide with each side defending their position to watch or not watch Naija movies irrespective of the consequences.

Ibtisam Musa, she sees nothing wrong in watching Naija and admits to spending hours on end staring at a TV screen as prayer time silently comes and passes.

For Hafswa Matano, she is worried that Naija movies are a way of spreading Christianity. Additionally,  witchcraft and sorcery is re-played out time and again as a way of solving issues. “I would rather watch Mexican soap opera since they infatuate women with romance.”

Word also has it that Muslim women in some localities have been spotted seeking the services of Christian pastors to be ‘prayed for’ probably out of what they see on these movies.

Fatuma Muzzamil, Naija movies are often the talk in the plot she lives as fellow women gossip about previous episodes. “It is through these chit-chat that I get ideas on how to tame my husband.”

When men were asked for their take on Naija movies, many are not bothered about watching. At least  two admitted to having banned the screening of the movies in their houses.

“Hii ni mambo ya wanawake (It is women stuff),” said an indifferent Ameen Muriuki.

For Abdallah Abdullahi, from the onset of his marriage; he declared that Naija movies as illegal in his house though remembers having confiscated several CDs of the same a few years ago. “I thrashed them the next morning and never heard any complaints.”

Abduallahi admits that he only came to own a TV and a DVD machine after he got married, but has otherwise always viewed TV as a ‘shaitan’. “The ability of television to influence your family negatively cannot be down played,” he says.

Osman Rajab was also shocked upon visiting a prominent Ustadh’s house only to find his wife and children watching the movies.

“I did not see it coming. I hold this particular Ustadh in high regard for his taqwa (piety) and great darsas (religious lectures). Thus, being knowledgeable on religious matters, I expected better,” he says.

Ali Mubarak blames it on the weak iman (faith) of women. “They tend to be easily swayed since they believe things easily.”

When Marhaba Life and Style sought the input of Sheikh Abu Hamza the Imam of Masjid Jeddah in Kibra, he concurs that Naija movies are a negatively influencing Muslim women and interfering with their Iman (faith).  

“These movies basically promote Christianity as their agenda and acted within their beliefs. It is sad that our Muslim sisters and mothers view them as a form of entertainment.”

Further, Sheikh Abu Hamza warns of blindly following our desires at the expense of prayer when it is due.

“Swala (prayer) is important in the life of a Muslim and should not be delayed or postponed just because of a TV programme.” 

Additionally, he says these movies open doors to munkar (corruption) and therefore has neither no place in Islam nor its teachings.

“Their emphasis on black magic and sorcery is unacceptable in Islam and therefore as Muslims, we should not condone it. They also seem to promote infidelity in marriages and promiscuity in the society making the said vices seem normal.”

Elsewhere, Hablana Hida in her darsa (religious lectures) in Mwangaza wakina Mama programme on Thursdays on Muslim FM station Iqra FM 95.0; she is on record warning Muslim women against prioritising watching of these TV programmes she calls Misalsal.

Interestingly, in 2014, Marhaba Life and Style tackled the topic… Why Muslims turn to magic as quick-fix to life challenges, we found out that young people among them Muslim women waiting in the queue to be sorted out by black magicians aka waganga in some of our Muslim neighbourhoods .

The prospects of finding a ‘quick fix’ to financial matters, troubled relationships or even just petty jealousy among other issues are what Marhaba Life and Style found out to be forcing young Muslim women to get sorted out by black magicians.

Probably, this explains why many gullible women are picking ideas out of their obsession with Naija movies.

That’s not all, Mexican Soaps  and others also seem to be causing mayhem in some Muslim marriages as wives put undue pressure on their partners to get ‘romantic’.

To these Sheikh Abu Hamza warns that these acts of ‘romance’ being played out on TV is mere acting and not real life.

He concludes by saying that Muslim are living in a digital era and we have a lot of interesting Islamic digital literature and videos. “From Holy Qur’an recitations, Darsas (lecturers) from prominent scholars, entertaining children videos and more are available.”

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