What if I asked whether you wanted a million dollars every year, the condition being you must suffer a cold one day every year. Would you accept? Naturally you would. The benefit far outweighs the cost.
It is the same with Islam. Being dutiful to Allah does take effort, but this life is very short compared to the eternal Hereafter. Bending the rules, compromising and finding ways to make things easier means we potentially discard an eternal Paradise for the scraps of this world.
Adhering to Islamic rules is not much more difficult than following secular ones, meaning we often underestimate what Islam has saved us from.
When we turn down alcohol and avoid clubbing, we bring down the chances of drink driving, associated accidents and incidents, violence, abuse and liver poisoning.
When we avoid being alone with the opposite gender, we avoid harassment, accusations and infidelity.
When we don the veil, we avoid the social pressure to feel and look sexy.
When we circumcise our boys we reduce the risk of urinary infections, STDs and cancer.
When we avoid casual hookups, we avoid venereal diseases.
When we avoid gambling, we avoid losing our hard-earned savings.
When we fast, we learn to control our desires, so that they work for our intellect and not vice versa.
The blessing of Islam is that it has been made to work with our lives. Even if it weren't that way - even if Islam were a complete encumbrance - it would just be a day of having a cold.
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