The natural disposition of man is that he has shame imbued in his very essence. He or she is naturally shy when exposed to certain stimuli or put into certain circumstances. However, over a period of time, due to excessive sinning; this natural state gets perverted, and a person loses all semblance to his original pure state.
This natural state can be seen with the progenitor of the human race; Adam and his wife Eve (Hawa) who were the first to experience this feeling of shame and modesty: “In the result, they both ate of the tree, and so their nakedness appeared to them: they began to sew together, for their covering, leaves from the Garden: thus did Adam disobey his Lord, and allow himself to be seduced.” (20:121) This natural feeling one has is a positive thing, and should not be thought as a disadvantage regardless of society. This can be seen in verse, when as soon as Adam and Eve where aware of their nakedness, their first reaction was to cover up, this is a trait which has been passed on to their offspring. It is a sad fact that our ancestors sought to cover their nakedness, we, on the other hand, go to extreme levels to show that which has been prohibited for us. In an age where there are so many different types of clothing, so many amazing designs, exuberant colours and astounding patterns; we seldom want to wear any at all.
Modesty is a salient aspect of Islam, as reported by the Noblest of Messengers: “The Prophet (SAW) passed by a man while he was remonstrating with his brother about his bashfulness (haya), saying, ‘Really, you are [too] bashful,’ as if he was saying, ‘It is causing you harm,’ so the Messenger of Allah said, ‘Leave him alone, for modesty is a part of Iman (Faith).'” (Bukari) (Muslim) Again, this demonstrates the brilliance of modesty and the fact that it is a very lofty characteristic. One who has this quality in abundance is truly blessed, he should thank his Lord in abundance, whereas, on who lacks this trait should beseech his Lord to increase it within himself. If a person wants to perfect his faith, then acquiring modesty is a prerequisite. You cannot be immodest, vulgar, callous and hope that you will obtain the pleasure of Allah. Rather adopt the qualities of the Prophets; be modest in speech and character.
The Messenger has similarly stated that: “Modesty only produces good.” (Bukari)(Muslim) This is evident in everyday life, one who has modesty saves himself from falling into sin. However one who lacks this, he will indulge himself in sin after sin, not caring about his status in the front of the people or God. No person was ever disgraced because of his modesty, but countless people have been disgraced because they did not possess this noble trait.
The severity of losing this modesty has been mentioned by the Prophet: “A part of that which people understood from the speech of the first prophethood is: If you have no shame (haya), do what you want” (Bukhari) Comprehend the gravity of this statement; the Messenger is saying that once you lose shame you can and will do anything. You will not have any morals. You will be destitute; a shell of a human being, wandering aimlessly through life. Shame is one of the deciding factors for eternal success in the Hereafter. Be cautious in regards to it. Do not surround yourself with people who do not have shame, lest their bad qualities stain you.
May Allah save us from living an immodest life. May he inculcate this concept of shame in our lives. May he forgive our shameful acts and give us the ability to refrain from committing any more in the future. Ameen.