Question: Imaam Ibn Al-Qayyim (may Allaah be merciful to him) mentioned in his book: “Al-Jawaab Al-Kaafee liman Sa’ala `An Al-Dawaa’ Al-Shaafee’ (An Appropriate Response to those Inquiring about Healing Treatments)” the passion for the physical form and the great harm to `Aqeedat-ul-Tawheed (faith in the Oneness of Allaah) in the soul of a believer it leads to.
What is the meaning of this “passion for the physical form”? Does it include pictures and statues of beautiful women that are hung on walls or erected on the street so that people can stand in front of them and love them as they love Allaah or feel passionate about them to the point of infatuation? Or is the meaning of these physical forms the beautiful images that circulate in a person’s mind of those they love and adore? If this is the case, what is the ruling on a man who throws himself onto his bed, closes his eyes, and imagines a naked woman and does with her what a man does to his wife to relieve the natural urges and desires inside him?
Is this the type of passion for the physical form that can lead to Shirk (associating others with Allaah in His Divinity or worship) that will not be forgiven – and we take refuge in Allaah from this? If that is so, can we say that it is not permissible for a husband to imagine his wife being naked, or is this also included as a passion for the physical form, even though the man has the right to see the whole body of his wife in real life and to love every part of her?
This is the problem that I wanted to present to Your Eminence, hoping by Allaah (Glorified and Exalted be He) that you will send me a quick reply, because I am very confused by this matter, especially as it is related to `Aqeedah (creed). May Allaah reward you the best.
Answer: The meaning of the passion for the physical form here is when someone loves it in a manner that resembles or even exceeds their love of Allaah. This is supported by what Ibn Al-Qayyim said; that maybe the one who is enamored will say that being with their lover is more beloved to them than their belief in the Oneness of their Lord… read more here.