Comparison between celebrating the Mawlid and performing Da`wah programs for weeks and the National Day

Question: I am an Imam in one of the Masjids (mosques) in Jeddah. I delivered a Khutbah (sermon) concerning the mission of the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) and I mentioned that celebrating the Mawlid (the Prophet’s birthday) is a Bid`ah (innovation in religion). The following week, the Khutbah was about the Masjids (mosques). I talked about maintaining Masjids and carpeting them. I based my argument and viewpoint upon the Qur’an and the Sunnah of the Messenger of Allah. After finishing the prayer, one of the worshippers came and said to me: “Shaykh, you said last week that celebrating the Mawlid of the Prophet (peace be upon him) is a Bid`ah. Can I ask you a question?”I said: “Yes, you can. I will answer your question to the best of my knowledge.” He said: “What is the legal ruling on celebrating the Mawlid of the Prophet (peace be upon him), children’ birthdays, Mother’s Day, the Week of the Tree, the Week of the Traffic, the National Day of the Kingdom and the Week of the Masjids? Are all these festivals Bid`ahs? Why do you oppose celebrating the Mawlid of the Prophet (peace be upon him) though he is the best out of all the creatures and he is the worthiest of glorification and veneration, and at the same time permit other celebrations? Moreover, you, Saudis, encourage these festivals.”

I pointed out to him that what is meant by the Week of Masjids is to urge Muslims to maintain and take care of them. He said to me: “Look at the streets, you will find Ayahs of the Qur’an written on paper and clothes torn by wind thrown in streets and in unclean places. Is that permissible, especially in the Week of Masjids?” He gave me a piece of cloth and said: “Look Shaykh at this piece of cloth wherein is the saying of Allaah: The Mosques of Allaah shall be maintained only by those who believe in Allaah and the Last Day This piece of cloth is thrown in the garden and upon which rubbish is thrown. To Allaah we belong and unto Him is our return.” These are the words of this person. I took this piece of cloth and washed it, and then I burnt it.

He added: “Shaykh, I do not want anything, but to make you; Khutabaa (preachers) and those whose words reach people talk. But you Saudi Khutabaa do not talk. If the government says that this is unlawful, you will say that it is unlawful, and if it says that this is lawful, you will say that it is lawful. You are the first one to tell me that this is good and doing so encourages Muslims to do good. I will not accept your saying except with a legal Fatwaa from senior scholars. You should not forget, Shaykh, that he who is silent with regard to spreading the truth is similar to a mute devil.”

Therefore, I would like to have a detailed legal Fatwa with regard to the festivals mentioned above along with mentioning the proof for every subject. May Allaah protect you.

Answer: Firstly, `Eed (festival) means in Arabic gatherings that Ta’ood (comes again) on a habitual manner. It may come again in a year, a month, or a week. Therefore, the word ‘Eed means a day that comes again like `Eed-ul-Fitr (the Festival of Breaking the Fast) or Friday, the gathering on that day and the acts done as acts of worship or habits on that day… read more here.

Celebrating Mother’s Day

Question: On which day do Muslims celebrate Mother’s Day and is it true that it was a special day for Faatimah Al-Zahraa’, the Prophet’s daughter (may Allaah be pleased with her)?

Answer: It is not permissible to celebrate what is called “Mother’s Day” or any other innovated celebration, because the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said… read more here.

Holding celebrations and reciting the Qur’aan upon one’s reaching maturity

Question: Here in South Africa, when a boy or girl reaches twenty-one years of age, people celebrate, recite Qur’aan and cook various dishes of food. They also gather and give the twenty-one- year old boy or girl a key. Are these acts permissible in Islaam? What is the ruling on such acts in Islaam?

Answer: What you have mentioned including celebrating and reciting Qur’aan upon reaching twenty-one or twenty-two years old has no basis in Sharee`ah, rather, it is a Bid`ah (innovation in religion) and imitation of the Christians (in your country)… read more here.

Impermissibility of celebrating birthdays

Question: My son is now living with his mother who celebrates his birthday every year. This involves having a party that includes food and lighting a number of candles equal to the age of my son; every candle representing a year of his life. The child has to blow all these candles and then the party starts. What is the ruling on this?

Answer: It is not permissible to have a birthday party for anyone, as it constitutes a Bid`ah (innovation in religion). It is authentically reported that the Messenger (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said… read more here.

Celebrating children’s birthdays

Question: Some of our Muslim brethren hold birthday parties for themselves and their children, what is the ruling on such festivals?

Answer: The basic principle regarding acts of `Ibaadah (worship) is that they are Tawqeefee (bound by a religious text and not amenable to personal opinion), and accordingly, no one is allowed to worship Allaah in a way other than which He ordained, because the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said in the Saheeh (authentic) Hadeeth… read more here.

Celebrating the Mawlid and the 15th of Sha`baan

Question: Is it permissible to celebrate religious ‘Eeds (festivals), such as the Mawlid (the Prophet’s birthday) or the 15th night of Sha‘baan, as the case may be?

Answer: (a) It is not permissible to celebrate innovated ‘Eeds… read more here.

Slaughtering at certain times as an act of the Sunnah

Question: What is the ruling on sacrificing an animal at a specific date and time every year? Many people believe that slaughtering on the 27th of Rajab, 6th of Safar, 15th of Shawwaal, and 10th of Muharram is an act of ‘Ibaadah (worship) and Qurbah (a good deed by which Allaah’s Pleasure is sought). Are these acts valid? Are they acts of Sunnah or Bid‘ah (innovation in religion) that contradict Islaam and anyone who does them will not be rewarded in return?

Answer: All acts of ‘Ibaadah and Qurbah that draw a Muslim close to Allaah are Tawqeefee (bound by a religious text and not amenable to personal opinion)… read more here.

Kind treatment toward family on the Day of `Ashooraa’

Question: On the 10th of Muharram, some people prepare a lot of food for their families and Khutabaa’ (preachers) constantly clarify the religious and worldly virtues of this day. What is the ruling on this? Some people also say that from experience preparing a lot of food on this day leads to blessing in their money.

Answer: What is valid is to fast during the 10th of Muharram, together with the 9th or 11th. If a Khateeb (preacher) or a tutor encourages people to do this and clarifies the virtue of it (the day), this is definitely good… read more here.

Giving charity on the Mid-Sha`baan night

Question: My father, when he was alive, instructed me to give Sadaqah (voluntary charity) as much as I can on the eve of the 15th of Sha‘baan every year. I carried out his will up to now, but some people reproach me for this act. Is Sadaqah given on the eve of 15th of Sha‘baan permissible according to my father’s will or not? Please enlighten us, may Allaah reward you.

Answer: Specifying this Sadaqah for the day of mid-Sha‘baan every year is an impermissible act of Bid‘ah (innovation in religion), even if this is the will of your father… read more here.

The night “Therein is decreed every matter of ordainments” and the ruling on spending the Mid-Sha`baan night in offering optional night Salaah

Question: My question is about the 15th night of Sha`baan. Does the following Aayah (Qur’aanic verse) in Soorah Al-Dukhaan, saying: Therein (that night) is decreed every matter of ordainments. Refer to the 15th night of Sha`baan, or Laylat-ul-Qadr (the Night of Decree), the 27th night of Ramadaan? Is it Mustahab (desirable) during this night to offer worship, engage in Thikr (Remembrance of Allaah), Qiyaam-ul-Layl (optional Night Prayer), recite Qur’aan, and fast the 14th of Sha`baan?

Answer: Firstly, the authentic explanation reported about the night in the Aayah referred to is that it is Laylat-ul-Qadr, not the night of mid-Sha`baan… read more here.

The Imaam supplicating to Allaah after the obligatory Salaah while the people are gathered

Question: Is it permissible for the Imaam to perform Du`aa’ (supplication to Allaah) after performing the prescribed prayer while all the people are still present?

Answer: Acts of worship are Tawqeefee (bound by a religious text and not amenable to personal opinion). Therefore, it is not legally permitted to say that this act of worship is permissible with regard to its origin, number, manner or place without legal evidence for saying so… read more here.

Reciting Soorah Yaa-Seen and Mawlid poems on the eve of the seventeenth of Ramadaan

Question: They also gather in Masjids (mosques) on the eve of the 17th of Ramadaan to recite Soorah Yaa-Seen and the Mawlid (the Prophet’s birthday) poems. Is this permissible?

Answer: The answer to this question is the same as that to the first one. Based on the evidence mentioned above, these practices are prohibited… read more here.

Reciting Soorah Yaa-Seen and Mawlid poems on the Mid – Sha`baan night

Question: In some Masjids (mosques), people gather on the eve of the 15th of Sha‘baan to recite Soorah Yaa-Seen three times and the Mawlid (the Prophet’s birth) poems.

Answer: This is a Bid‘ah (innovation in religion). It was authentically reported that the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) that is not part of it will have it rejected. He (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said in another Hadeeth… read more here.

Excellence of the night of mid – Sha‘baan

Question: Some scholars say that many Ahaadeeth were narrated about the merit of spending the eve of mid – Sha‘baan in Salaah (Prayer) and its day in Sawm (Fast). Are these Saheeh (authentic) Ahaadeeth or not? If there are Saheeh Ahaadeeth, please explain them to us in detail. If not, please advise. May Allaah reward you with good.

Answer: Many Saheeh Ahaadeeth were narrated about the merit of Sawm in Sha‘baan, but without specifying a certain day. For example, there is a Hadeeth in the Two Sahih Books of Hadeeth (i.e. Al-Bukhaaree and Muslim) which states that ‘Aa’ishah (may Allaah be pleased with her) said… read more here.

Fasting (Sawm) during Rajab and Sha‘ban

Question: I know people who always perform Sawm (Fast) for the whole months of Rajab and Sha‘baan until Ramadaan without break. Is there any Hadeeth regarding this practice? If there is any, kindly provide the text?

Answer: It is not authentically reported that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) or any of the Sahaabah (Companions of the Prophet, may Allaah be pleased with them) used to fast the entire month of Rajab or Sha‘baan… read more here.

Should priority be given to making up for the missed days of fast or to fasting six days from Shawwaal?

Question: If the month of Shawwaal starts and a woman has five missed days of fast and she wants to fast six days from Shawwaal. What is the better course of action: to make up for her missed days of fast, and if there are enough days left, she can fast six days from Shawwaal, or to fast the six days of Shawwaal and afterwards make up for her missed days of fast over the course of the other months? Is it true that `Aa’ishah (may Allaah be pleased with her) used to delay making up for her missed days of fast in Ramadaan until the next Sha`baan? Is it permissible to delay observing compensatory fast for this long period when a person does not know how long they will live?

Answer: It is permissible for a person to start observing compensatory fast even if they miss fasting six days from Shawwal… read more here.

Observing voluntary Sawm before making up for the missed days of Ramadaan on the part of a woman

Question: It is known that women must make up for her missed days of Sawm (Fast). It is also known that performing the Fareedah (obligatory act) first is better than performing a voluntary act of worship. Is it permissible for a woman to observe voluntary Sawm, such as the six days of Shawwaal and the Day of `Arafah (9th of Thul-Hijjah), then make up for the missed days of Ramadaan afterwards? `Aa’ishah (may Allaah be pleased with her) used to observe all voluntary Sawm and only make up for her missed days of Ramadaan in Sha`baan. Is this correct? What is the ruling on thevoluntary Sawm I observed on six days of Shawwaal and the Day of `Arafah? I still have not made up for the days I missed during Ramadaan.

Answer: To be on the safe side, it is preferable for a woman to start making up for her missed days of Sawm before observing any voluntary Sawm. This is because the Prophet (peace be upon him) said… read more here.

Days on which it is prohibited to observe Sawm (fast)

Question: What are the days on which it is prohibited to observe Sawm (Fast)?

Answer: The days on which it is prohibited to observe Sawm include the day of doubt which is the 30th day of the month of Sha`baan if the new moon of Ramadaan has not been sighted, the two ‘Eeds… read more here.

Praying behind an Imaam who does not recite properly

Question 23: A man entered the Masjid (mosque) after the first congregational Salaah (Prayer) was over to find another congregational Salaah led by an illiterate Imaam (the one who leads congregational Prayer). Such a person who is well-aware of the proper recitation of Qur’aan thought it was not right to join this congregational Salaah. Should he have joined them? If he had joined them to attain the reward of offering congregational Salaah, would his Salaah have been valid?

Answer: If the unlettered Imaam performs Salaah tranquility and properly making no mistake in Soorah Al-Faatihah (Opening Chapter of the Qur’aan) in a way that changes the meanings, he may join Salaah with this Imaam to attain the reward of congregational Salaah. Otherwise, he may wait for others to pray with to maintain the observance of Salaah in congregation, if possible... read more here.

Changing the intention from Ma’moom to Imaam

Question 22: A Ma’moom (person being led by an Imaam in Prayer) joined ‘Asr (Afternoon) Prayer during the fourth Rak‘ah (unit of Prayer) then another man came and started praying behind him. Is it thus permissible for the first praying person to change his intention from being a Ma’moom to being an Imaam (the one who leads congregational Prayer)?

Answer: It is permissible for whoever misses congregational Salaah (Prayer) and cannot find anybody else to start a new congregation with, to pray (as a Ma’moom) behind a person who is making up for the Rak‘ahs (units of Prayer) that they missed after the Tasleem (salutation of peace ending the Prayer) of the Imaam. Proof for the foregoing is that the Prophet (peace be upon him) was offering Salaah during the night and Ibn ‘Abbaas came and prayed behind him. Moreover, offering Salaah in congregation is more rewarded... read more here.

Praying in the work place

Question 21: Is it permissible for a male Muslim not to attend the congregational Salaah (Prayer) due to being busy with his studies and class times?

Answer: Male Muslims have to perform Fard (obligatory) Salaah at the Masjid (mosque) with the congregation. They are not permitted to miss the congregational Salaah except for a Shar‘ee (Islaamic legal) excuse such as illness or fear. Accordingly, being busy with studies is not a valid excuse for missing the congregational Salaah... read more here.

Entering the Masjid while the congregation is in the last Tashahhud

Question 20: If a person joins Salaah (Prayer) during the last Tashahhud (testification recited in the sitting position in the last unit of Prayer) before the Imaam (the one who leads congregational Prayer) pronounces Tasleem (salutation of peace ending the Prayer), will they get the reward of offering congregational Salaah? Or will they get the reward of praying individually? What is the best course of action upon entering the Masjid (mosque) and finding the Imaam in the last Tashahhud? Should a person complete the Tashahhud, or should they wait for others to come and pray with?

Answer: Anyone who joins the Imaam during the last Tashahhud will not be considered to have caught the congregational Salaah, but they will get the reward of whatever parts of Salaah they pray with the Imaam. To be considered having joined the congregational Salaah, a latecomer should offer at least one Rak`ah (unit of Prayer) with the Imaam, for the Prophet (peace be upon him) said... read more here.

Reciting Qur’aan over Zamzam Water to be granted certain wishes to be granted certain wishes

Question 19: What is the ruling on certain people reciting Qur’aan over Zamzam Water (well that sprung up under the Prophet Isma’eel when he was a baby, near the Ka‘bah), then giving it to someone to drink in order to be granted specific wishes or for healing?

Answer: It is reported that the Prophet (peace be upon him) drank from Zamzam Water, used to carry it with him, and encouraged people to drink it saying: Zamzam Water is for whatever it is drunk for. On the authority of Ibn ‘Abbaas... read more here.

Meaning of Hijrah and its conditions

Question 18: What are the conditions of Hijrah (a believer’s migration to an Islaamic land) according to Islaam? What is meant by the following statement of the Prophet (peace be upon him): Worship (of Allaah) at times of turmoil is like Hijrah to me. ?

Answer: Hijrah means leaving the non-Muslim country to a Muslim country, which is Waajib (obligatory). Allaah (Exalted be He) says: Verily, as for those whom the angels take (in death) while they are wronging themselves (as they stayed among the disbelievers even though emigration was obligatory for them), they (angels) say (to them): “In what (condition) were you?” until His Saying: Such men will find their abode in Hell – What an evil destination! Commenting on the Aayah (Qur’aanic verse), Ibn Katheer said: “The general meaning of this glorious Aayah includes all those who reside among Mushriks (those who associate others with Allaah in His Divinity or worship) and cannot freely perform the rites of the religion while able to emigrate. Such persons, by remaining there are wronging themselves and committing an unlawful act by Ijmaa‘ (consensus of scholars).”... read more here.

Ruling on fasting Muharram, Sha‘baan and the ten days of Thul-Hijjah

Question 17: What is the religious ruling on observing Sawm (Fasting) on the last Ten Days of Thul-Hijjah and the whole of the months of Muharram and Sha‘baan? Answer us, may Allaah confer His Blessings upon you!

Answer: Bismillaah [In the Name of Allaah] and all praise is due to Him. It is Mashroo‘ (Islaamically permissible) to fast in the month of Muharram and Sha‘baan. As for the last Ten Days of Thul-Hijjah, there is no evidence concerning fasting on them; but there is nothing wrong with fasting on them without having the belief that they have certain specialty or fasting is recommended on them in particular.The Prophet (peace be upon him) said concerning the month of Muharram: The best Sawm after Ramadaan, is the Month of Allaah: Muharram.Therefore, it is recommendable to fast the whole of Muharram and it is Sunnah (supererogatory act of worship following the example of the Prophet) to fast on the ninth, the tenth and the eleventh of it... read more here.

Knowing the first day of Sha‘baan

Question 1: How can we sight the crescent moon of Ramadan in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia? I would like to know the way of sighting the new moon. Who is officially responsible for announcing the sighting of the new moon?

Question: Is the radio broadcast among the Shar‘ee (Islaamic legal) means that one can rely on to begin Sawm (Fasting) when announced? Does the radio broadcast meet the legal conditions required in the witness who confirm the sighting of the new moon in order to commence observing Sawm based on such announcement?

Question: Are telephone and telegraphs considered official Shar‘ee means of communication that can be trusted in this regard, though one does not know the person who is talking or the person sending the telegraph?

Answer: Due to the importance of knowing the first day of the month of Shaa‘ban because of being related to the month of Ramadaan, the Ministry of Justice sends a circulated note to all courts during the month of Rajab that all judges should inform people to sight the crescent moon of the month of Sha‘baan… read more here.