Limit How Much News You Consume; Not How Much You Care

Omar Suleiman


Channel: Omar Suleiman

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So obviously, there's a lot of uncertainty and a lot of anxiety that's in the air that's surrounding us because of the elections, climate and so many other things that are happening in the world. And I wanted to use tonight's reminder just to reflect a bit on what the profit slice on gives us and how to deal with an unhealthy overload. Now, before I go any further, I do want to say that last week, there was an excellent webinar, we had two excellent webinars on how to learn how to deal with uncertainty from a spiritual, psychological and mental health religious perspective. And you can find some tips that were really, truly beneficial from Dr. Tanya sister Nigel sister sada, about how

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to cope with anxiety and uncertainty and in general and in specific to the times that we're living in. But I wanted to reflect upon something that I had found really interesting from a hadith from the prophets, I summon the incident with the Prophet sly sillimanite. Actually, given a hold of about this, I want to say it was a few months ago, I don't know if it was pre COVID. I've lost track of time, just like everyone else, I'm pretty sure it was before COVID, a few months before COVID. But this idea of how to deal with the new cycle and how to deal with what is unhealthy for us and what shuts us off and doesn't allow us to function properly. And it's actually a hadith where the

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Prophet sly son was with the companions and he was in the graveyard and he asked them if they could hear what he had heard. And they said no, and the prophets lie Selim said that had I not feared that you would stop burying your dead, then I would ask Allah subhanaw taala to let you hear some of what I'm hearing. That's really interesting because the prophets lie Selim is saying that we would not be able to function properly and we would not go about burying our dead and doing what is normal and expected. If we had that level of exposure to the sounds and some of the things that are happening in the realm that comes after us, my loss parents give us all the good ending. And let us have you

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know, gardens of Paradise in our graves, a llama I mean, the prophet size is telling us that we would not be able to function that that would paralyze us And somehow, at the same time, the prophet sighs lm teaches us what to frequent the remembrance of Hanuman love that of the destroyer of pleasures, to visit the graveyards frequently, to remind ourselves of death in a healthy way. So while he tells us to frequently remember, it's a lot more anyhoo a solemn, he also tells us that he wants us to be protected from hearing too much of it to where we would not be able to function properly, and carry about our duties the way that we have been taught to carry out our duties. And

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that's a very powerful, you know, connection that I think we can make to the idea of overconsumption and what is too much. Now, when you talk about the news cycle, let's talk about some of the prophetic barriers that have been put there much of what's in the Quran and Sunnah is about verification of news, right in Java compacity can be never infallible, you know, oferta Thumper to, to verify what comes to have news, the importance of verification. And the prophets I send him said that it is enough line for a person that they repeat everything that they hear. And you can just think about how often we share we retweet, we push for things. And because we don't properly verify

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things, we contribute to lies because once you share something, once you spread something, you own it, you own the implications of what is being said. And somehow that's terrifying when you think about the way that often this relates to people's honor and the way that it relates to, you know, very consequential news. And somehow we're taught by the prophets like Selim, don't repeat everything that you hear, verify things, so that you don't end up being a part of deception. And of course, in our day and age, where the mechanisms of deception were the tools of deceit are so much more, it becomes so much easier to fall prey to those tools and to become tools of deception,

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ourselves unknowingly. So May Allah protect us from that alone. I mean, so that's the first thing the importance of verifying news. Then there's the second layer news that's not even worth verifying. Okay, which is gossip, which is, you know, rumors, things that don't have any benefit to you whatsoever. And that's a lot of what gets passed around, right. So when the Prophet slicin talks about backbiting and relates it to, you know, consuming a dead carcass, a dead bloated carcass that's like spiritually filling yourself with rotten dead meat. And that's the implication that it's going to have on your soul and on your spirituality and you know that your heart hardens and that

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you start to feel a disconnect from Allah subhanaw taala when you overly indulge that type of news, so gossip and things that are of no benefit the Prophet size upset that from the goodness of a person's Islam is that they leave off that which doesn't concern them. So some news is not even worth verifying. It's just best ignored altogether. And then you have important news, and how do I come to this place where and then

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What I want to talk about tonight, I consume what is important, but I don't consume it to a point that it completely kills me and shuts me off, and I can't do anything anymore. I am completely paralyzed by it. I'm getting lost in the amount of news that I'm consuming, even if it is important news. And that's something that I wanted to speak about for a moment. And shall let's add that to limit your consumption does not necessarily mean that you have to limit your compassion, it doesn't mean that you have to limit your care, it doesn't mean that you have to limit your empathy. Okay, realize that the prophets, I send them who was this ocean of empathy and who produced the

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companions, who also reflected that empathy, they did not have the mechanisms of connection that we have today to the world around them. But that did not stop them from carrying that did not stop them from praying that did not stop them from acting in ways that were beneficial to all of those places, and areas where they did not have access to with the tools that we have today. So what are just some important concepts for us to remember, number one, you have to remember that overly consuming something means that it's unhealthy means that, you know, you're sitting there trying to predict a whole bunch of outcomes, right. And it's not necessarily going to be of any, you know, of any

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benefit for you to sit there and to monitor to that level. But at the same time, you feel like you need to, there's a sense of a sense of anxiety. And it's important for us to make use of the tools of limiting screen time as well. Right? So we have all these screen time apps now that exists, we have all these things to actually tell us how much time we're spending, let's use those things. inshallah, tada, let's use those mechanisms to stop ourselves put time limits, start time and end time.

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A cumulative time that you can engage these different types of news, these different types of apps inshallah, to Allah. And that's something that's beneficial, because we learned from the Prophet slice on to discipline, everything, even leisure, we discipline, our leisure. So discipline, your news consumption, discipline, your viewership discipline, how much you're engaging these things. But at the same time, one thing to note is that a person who, you know, would even sit there and follow the news of something that is of extreme importance, I'm talking about news that relates to the oppressed news that relates to injustice towards our brothers and sisters. If a person sat there and

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consumed that for hours, and watched every video that came through WhatsApp, and read every tweet, but did not take the time to spend three minutes and drop instead of just three hours of reading and indulging it, then that person has not really done anything productive, right? So one thing that's very important for us to remember is that we should take active actions. As we're limiting our consumption of news, we need to increase our capacity of drama and good deeds, and good deeds looks like various things in regards to these things, right? Sometimes good deeds is active advocacy, sometimes it's charity, whatever good deeds look like in regards to that particular thing. Let's

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keep our energy channel towards something productive every single time we engage it. So limiting the news cycle, limiting how much we consume even of important news. But in order to not develop apathy, making sure that we channel our energy towards productive small actions that could have major consequences and have major rewards, and could actually make a major impact over time and especially if multiple people are doing it. And so what that means their brothers and sisters is that yes, you know the prophets, I said, I mentioned the dangerous state of the spirituality of a person who has no ham, who has no concern for what's happening with their brothers and sisters. We don't want

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apathy, apathy is spiritual death. Empathy is important. But I'm going to be disciplined in not spending so much time that I forget to do the things that Allah subhanaw taala has given me access to do so right now. All of us need to make a commitment to our two decades of gambling every single night to like as a prayer. Make do out for your brothers and sisters around the world. Do not lose those moments of sincere do that is more important than anything else do as an agent of change. So continue to make your app do some form of good deed, some form of charity, some form of advocacy, and do not belittle the good deeds because the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa sallam said that attack

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it on him no matter if you say I do not be little any good deeds. That includes good deeds in regards to our individual worship and in regards to our collective actions for good, so do not be little the smallest good deed. It's not a bad thing to limit your consumption of the news. It's a bad thing to limit your prophetic concern. So let's let's be very careful especially now not to shut off because if we shut off because

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We're doing too much of, you know, engaging bad news to where it's causing us so much anxiety, that we can't be the best version of ourselves, then we're not helping ourselves and we're not helping anyone else. So let's limit ourselves. Let's keep our trust in Allah subhanaw taala. Let's keep our eyes going, let's keep our productive efforts going. But limiting consumption does not equal limiting care. I hope that I've repeated that enough times, to where inshallah tada it, it reaches who it needs to reach. And I want to just say that, you know, Let's all make dua for one another. May Allah help all of you through whatever it is that you may be going through May Allah help all of

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our brothers and sisters, those that are sick, those that are oppressed, those that feel no hope, may Allah subhanaw taala give them hope and May Allah make us a source of hope for them. May Allah subhanaw taala allow us to find hope in the capacity of being a source of hope for them. May Allah Subhana Allah, grant them His mercy and grant us His mercy and allow us to be vehicles of His mercy to them. May Allah Subhana Allah to Allah protect all of those that are afraid May Allah subhanho wa Taala comfort them. May Allah have mercy on our deceased brothers and sisters wherever they are. May Allah Subhana Allah to Allah grant us peace grant us justice may allow us to add or remove chaos and

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turmoil that hinders the very virtues that we are to channel to society around us. May Allah allow us to bring those virtues to our societies so that we can do away with the negativity and the chaos and that which takes people away from a lot and takes people away from the things that are beloved to Allah Subhana Allah Ameen my jobs are with you and I request you to also keep in your eyes inshallah. jack of all fatal settlement.