Name of Questioner
Hanna – United States
Not Just a Matter of Appearances
As salamu `alaykum
I’m very complexed about my appearances about my nose in particular. Even if I try not to show it. I would like to have plastic surgery because I can’t help thinking about it. I’m not a very confident person and as time passes, I’m still obssessed by having a rhinoplasty. I’m not an ugly person, but my nose makes my life miserable. I feel guilty about it because I don’t know really the position of Islam about plastic surgery. Three years ago, I made an appointment with a plastic surgeon, but I did not go see it through.
Name of Counsellor
As salamu `alaykum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh
I am probably, not the best person to answer your question, becuase I can not comprehend why anyone wants to go and change a apart of their appearance simply becuase they do not like it. We have become intolerant, impatient, and unable to acknowledge the existence of the nature of something or some one because of a personal like or dislike – so change it by any means possible. In fact we are always changing the nature of things, and when we do we are not happy, because once we know we can change something or someone, we want to go onto the next thing that can be changed. We become so busy changing things or people, that we do not have the time to live and to grow. We seem not able to accept what Allah (SWT) has given to us.
That is the nature of this illusive nature of perfection, accept it can never be pefect, because perfection on a human scale is obssesed with physical appearances.
“…Umm Ya’qub used to recite the Holy Qur’an. She went to Prophet Muhammad and said: What is this news that has reached me from you that you curse those women who tattooed and those women who have themselves tattooed, the women who pluck hair from their faces and who make spaces between their teeth for beautification changing what God has created? Thereupon ‘Abdullah said: Should I not curse one upon whom Allah’s Messenger (may peace be upon him) has invoked curse and that is in the Book also. Thereupon that woman said: I read the Qur’an from cover to cover, but I did not find that in it. Whereupon he said: If you had read (thoroughly) you would have definitely found this in that (as) Allah, the Exalted and Glorious, has said: “What Allah’s Messenger brings for you accept that and what he has forbidden you refrain from that”(Muslim 24: 5302)
By accepting what has been given to you, you will find less burden and more joy, when you concentrate on developing your inner beauty which will have a greater affect on others. However opinions differ on this matter:
Professor Dr. Hassan Hathout stated:
“… A woman may have a nose a metre long and 10 metres wide and be satisfied with it and may find some man who likes and praise it, so may Allah bless them; but she, and the people around her, may feel that she is ugly and thus develop a complex that should be treated otherwise she’ll shun society or live in the dark damning her bad luck, or may try to deviate or escape.
The Hadith of the Prophet, may the Blessings and Peace of Allah be upon him, is not only connected with alteration of the creation but also conditional upon prejudicing moral standards, but if woman seeks to alleviate ugliness and to increase beauty without prejudicing moral standards. I believe that doing this is a sort of mercy and is rather harmonious with what Allah addressed His Prophet with:
AND WE HAVE NOT SENT THEE EXCEPT AS A MERCY UNTO THE WORLDS”.
For your further guidance, please try the following links:
• Live Clinic: Plastic Surgery http://www.islamonline.net/livedialogue/english/Browse.asp?hGuestID=fXo653
• The Islamic Vision of Some Medical Practices http://www.islamset.com/bioethics/vision/fiq_legal.html