I recently got an award for something. My problem is that the ceremony where this award will be handed out to me will start with people reciting from the Holy Quran, the Bible, The Tripitaka and the Gita. This award will be important for me when I apply to universities, and not receiving this award may also cause problems for me at school. What should I do?
All perfect praise be to Allaah, The Lord of the worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allaah and that Muhammad is His slave and Messenger.
First of all, we say that if it is possible for you to receive this award at a time other than the time of the ceremony, then it is not permissible for you to attend this ceremony. Also, if you can delay arriving there until the end of the recitations (other than the Quran), when people start receiving their awards, and attend at this time to receive your award, then do so.
Nevertheless, if receiving this award depends on attending the entire ceremony including all the prohibitions that it includes, then it is permissible for you to attend while denying this evil according to your ability, the least of which is denying it with your heart and hating it.
The evidence for the permissibility to attend a place where evil takes place while the person has a correct purpose in attending is what the scholars stated regarding the permissibility of going to the market despite all the evils that are there although it is more appropriate for the people of virtue who are taken as an example not to go there; Al-Qurtubi said in his book Al-Jaami’ li Ahkaam Al-Quran: “These ahaadeeth are evidence that it is disliked to enter markets, especially at this day and age, where men mix with women. This is what our scholars stated when falsehood is spread in the market and it is full of evil: the people of virtue and those whom people imitate for their religion are disliked to enter the markets as a way of disapproving of the places where Allaah is disobeyed.”
Allaah knows best.
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