Alternative Ways for Muslim Couples to Celebrate Valentine’s Day
Valentine’s day is celebrated enthusiastically throughout the world every year, especially by the youth. And in today’s social media-driven world, Muslim youth often find themselves in a dilemma over whether to celebrate these holidays. Therefore, it’s not common for us as Muslims to question – “Can Muslim Couples Celebrate Valentine’s Day?”
The answer? Yes and no. Before we jump into an explanation, let’s find out what Valentine’s day is.
What is Valentine’s Day?
Valentine’s Day is a global hallmark celebration of love in which people, especially couples, express their love for one another, typically through chocolates, gifts, and cards.
Associated with St. Valentine, a priest who was martyred in Rome on February 14th, 270 CE, this celebration predates Christianity and goes back to ancient Rome and Chaucer. Lore has it that St. Valentine’s used to betroth Christian couples in secrecy, for which the Roman empire ultimately killed him.
Whether this story is true or not, we simply cannot know for sure, but all accounts point to the fact that couples exchanged love notes on February 14th after Chaucer’s poem about Valentine’s became popular.
Should Muslims Celebrate Valentine’s Day?
People worldwide use this as an excuse to celebrate the Day widely, often practicing activities that may be considered immoral or prohibited in Islam. Moreover, imitating non-Muslims, whether in worship or by engaging in their festivals, is a prohibited practice in Islam. Therefore, Muslims should not celebrate Valentine’s Day.
It’s also important to remember that Islam encourages Muslim spouses to shower one another with affection every day of the year. The Prophet (ﷺ) gave Muslims several examples of expressing affection and love towards their spouses. For example, the Prophet (ﷺ) used to drink from the same spot of the glass as his wife, Hazrat Ayesha, and on other occasions, he would even race and play with Aisha (RA) because it pleased her.
Therefore, if Muslims followed the Prophet’s (ﷺ) Sunnah, they would express their love and affection for their spouses irrespective of February 14th.
Should Muslims Boycott Valentine’s?
As Valentine’s Day approaches this year, there are several halal activities you can engage in with your spouse while remaining within the boundaries of Islam and also respecting Muslim cultures.
Allah (سبحانه وتعالى) says in the Quran:
“And one of His signs is that He created for you spouses from among yourselves so that you may find comfort in them. And He has placed between you compassion and mercy. Surely in this are signs for people who reflect.“ (Ar-Rum 30:21)
Show Affection Toward Your Spouse
Listed below are some alternative activities we suggest Muslim couples engage in together to spend quality time with their spouses and grow in love and affection.
Cooking is considered a therapeutic activity by many. It is also an ideal activity to consider for couples that are looking to spend some quality time together. Therefore, consider cooking together to have fun, especially if you and your spouse prefer to spend more time indoors.
Even if one of the spouses is not into cooking, he can participate with the wife by cutting or helping around. So, get that BBQ grill out, or if you’re looking to get creative, give baking a cake a try!
2. Play Islamic Quizzes
Choose informative Islamic books to read together. When you’re both finished, prepare a set of quizzes for each other. You can both then try testing each other, and whoever wins gets rewarded with a prize. This is an excellent activity to try. Not only will it increase your Islamic knowledge, but it will also be an excellent way to spend time with one another.
3. Visit a Nearby Park, Sea, or Lake
Nothing will boost your Imaan like spending time by nature being in awe of Allah’s creations. So, take a short trip with your spouse, pack something to eat, and visit the nearest park. You can also consider sitting by the seashore or a lake, depending on where you live. Spend time talking to your spouse, paying attention to them, and appreciating the beauty and detail of Allah’s creations.
4. Enjoy the Rain and Snow
If you live in an area where it rains or snows often – take this as an excellent opportunity to spend quality time together. Go out, have dinner, and play in the snow. A little snowball fight never harmed anyone! Any activity where you can laugh and spend time together will be great for your relationship!
5. Reminisce and Thank Allah
Sometimes the best thing to do is not to do anything! If you or your work have hectic routines with work and household chores, pick a day to rest in the comfort of your home, sit down together to think, and share some of your happiest memories.
Use this to thank Allah (سبحانه وتعالى) for bringing you two together and showering you with His blessings.
6. Play Fun Games
If you and your spouse are mostly indoor people who don’t prefer going out frequently, play some indoor games together. After all, the primary aim is for you and your spouse to spend time where you can take a break from monotonous routines and cool down. Some games you can consider playing include scramble, word search, or riddles. You can also find these games with Islamic themes.
7. Watch Islamic Lectures Together
If you and your spouse are interested in reflecting on your lifestyle and the role of Islam in it, a great activity to consider would be to watch Islamic lectures together. You can then discuss what you both learned and how you both plan on implanting the new information into your lives.
You can also watch some lectures about the rights of spouses in Islam to fulfill your duties towards one another more efficiently.
8. Consider Shopping
If you’re looking for outdoor activity, go shopping. Shop for gifts for your spouse or even buy gifts for family members, relatives, or friends. Brainstorming ideas about what to get and spending time buying gifts together will provide a great opportunity to rejuvenate your relationship.
9. Host Friends & Family
The Prophet ((ﷺ)) emphasized greatly showing kindness to one’s family and relatives. The Prophet (PBUH) also said:
“The Prophet (ﷺ) said, “Whoever believes in Allah and the Last Day, should serve his guest generously; and whoever believes in Allah and the Last Day, should unite the bond of kinship (i.e., keep good relation with his kith and kin); and whoever believes in Allah and the Last Day, should talk what is good or keep quiet.” – (Bukhari)
Therefore, host a lunch or dinner and invite your family and relatives. Prepare your house and meals for the Day together with your spouse. This will not only put you both in a good mood but also serve as an opportunity to spend time together, which is necessary for any relationship to succeed.
10. Race Together
Racing with your spouse is Sunnah. So, what are you waiting for? Go out in your backyard and get to it!
Conclusion for Alternative Ways for Muslim Couples to Celebrate Valentine’s Day
The love between spouses has been greatly emphasized in Islam. Therefore, spending quality time engaging in meaningful activities that remind one of Allah and the deen can increase love and affection between couples.
So, instead of celebrating a prohibited event such as Valentine’s Day, we recommend doing some of the above-listed activities so you can stay within the boundaries of Islam and rejuvenate your relationship with your spouse.