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Miscellaneous Masa'il on the Beard (cont..)
Tuesday, August 31, 2010


(continued from posting of Miscellaneous Masa'il on the Beard)

Question: 2. Has the shariat stipulated the length of the beard or not? If it has, what is the stipulated length?

Answer: In the afore-mentioned Hadeeth, the order is given to lengthen the beard. There is a narration in Tirmidhi (Chapter on Etiquettes, Pg 100, Vol 2), consisting of a weak chain of narrators, that Nabi sallallahu alaihi wasalam used to trim the extra hair from the length and width of his beard. In substantiation to this there is another narration in Bukhari (Chapter on Clothing, Pg 875, Vol 2) that Hazrat Ibn Umar (RA), upon completing Haj and Umrah and removing the Ihram, would grasp his beard and cut whatever hair exceeded the extent of his fist. Another narration has been reported to this effect by Hazrat Abu Hurairah (RA) in (Nasbur-Raya, Pg 458, Vol 2). From this it is clear that the minimum length of the beard is a fist-full (Hidayah, Chapter on Fasting). Therefore just as shaving off the beard is haram, likewise to keep it less then a fist is also haram. It is reported in Durre Mukhtar: - Trimming the beard to an extent less then a fist-full, as some westerners and effeminate people do, has not been permitted by any jurist. Completely shaving the beard off is the trend of Jewish Indians and non-Arab Zoroastrians. [Shami, New Edition, Pg 418, Vol 2] The same subject matter is to be found in Fathul Qadeer (Pg 77, Vol 2) and Bahrur Ra'iq (Pg 302, Vol 2). Sheikh Abdul Haq Muhaddith Dehlawi writes in his book, 'Ashatul - Lamat': "Shaving the beard is haram and allowing it to grow to the length of a fist full is wajib." Therefore it is haram to trim it if it is less than a fist full. (Pg 228, Vol 1). It is mentioned in Imdadul Fatawa: "Keeping a beard is wajib and trimming it so that it is less then a fist full is haram, due to the following Hadeeth of Nabi sallallahu alaihi wasalam: "Oppose the idolaters by lengthening your beards." [Bukhari and Muslim] It is mentioned in Durre Mukhtar: "It is haram for a man to cut his beard. The masnoon length is one fist."[Imdadul Fatawa, Pg 223, Vol 4]



Question: 3 It is the habit of some Huffaz that some time before Ramadan they start keeping a beard and after Ramadan they shave it. Is it correct to make such Huffaz Imams for the Taraweeh? Is performing salah behind them correct or not?

Answer: The Hafiz who shaves or trims his beard has in fact perpetrated a major sin and is a Fasiq (flagrant transgressor of the Law). For him to lead the Taraweeh Salah is not permissible and to follow him in Salah is Makrooh-e-Tahrimi (i.e. it is haram in practice). Similarly, that Hafiz who only keeps a beard in the month of Ramadhan and thereafter shaves it, falls within the same category. Those people who permit such Huffaz to lead the fardh or Taraweeh Salah are, also Faasiqs and sinful.



Question: 4. Some people show a disliking to the beard and look down upon it. If any friend or family member wishes to keep a beard then he is prevented and is frowned at. Some people stipulate the shaving of the beard as a pre-condition for marriage. What does the shariat say about such people?

Answer: To understand the answer to this question, one should bear in mind a basic principal that to mock any of the distinguishing features of Islam and to degrade or disgrace any of the Sunnats of Nabi sallallahu alaihi wasalam is tantamount to Kufr, whereby a person leaves the fold of Islam. We have learnt above that Nabi (sallallahu Alayhi wa sallam) has affirmed that the beard is a distinguished sign of Islam and a unanimous practice of all the Prophets. Therefore, those people who consider the beards as loathsome and detestable on the basis of it being a distortion of nature and prevent those who aspire to keep a beard from amongst their relatives or either mock at them and, likewise, those people who will not allow their daughters to marry without the bridegroom shaving his beard, such people should seriously ponder over the plight of their Iman. It is incumbent on them to sincerely repent and also renew their nikahs. Hakimul Ummat Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi (Rahmatullah alayhi) writes in his book. Islahur-Rusoom on Pg 15, "Amongst these customs, the shaving of the beard, trimming it in such a way that it remains less then one fist in length and the lengthening of the moustache, is considered in today's times as a stylish appearance by most youth." The Hadeeth states: "Lengthen the beard and trim the moustache." [This Hadeeth has been narrated both by Imam Bukhari and Imam Muslim] It should be noted well that Nabi sallallahu alaihi wa sallam has used the commanding tense in imploring both these actions and the commanding tense in the Arabic language signifies obligation and incumbency of an action. Hence, we deduce that these two actions are wajib and to discard a wajib is haram. Therefore both the shaving and the trimming of the beard is haram. Furthermore it has been mentioned in another Hadeeth that Nabi sallallahu alaihi wasalam said: "The person who does not trim his moustache is not from amongst our group." [Tirmidhi, Ahmed and Nisai] When we have now established it to be a sinful act, then those people who persist in doing it, have an affinity towards it, consider the lengthening of the beard as a defect and jeer at and ridicule those who keep a beard, it will become rather difficult and complex for them to maintain their Iman. It is incumbent on such people to sincerely repent, renew their marriages and formulate their lifestyle in accordance to the order of Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta'ala and His Nabi sallallahu alaihi wasalam.



Question: 5. Some people keep a beard during the period of Haj and shave it upon returning. Some people go to the extent of shaving their beards even during the period of Haj. Is the Haj of such people valid?

Answer: Those people who, during their Haj or on their return journey shave their beards or even trim them are even more pitiable and deserving of mercy than the general folk as they could not refrain from major sins whilst at the house of Allah, whereas only that Haj is worthy of acceptance which is free from sin. Some jurists maintain that the sign of an accepted Haj is that a total Deeni (religious) revolution or change takes place in the life of a person, i.e. he begins to commit himself to righteous actions and makes all attempts to abstain from sinning after returning from Haj. The person in whose life no change occurs even after the Haj, i.e. he still persists in discarding his Fardh obligations and persists in committing major sins as he used to do prior to the performance of the Haj, then such a person's Haj is in reality not a Haj but a mere leisure and pastime. However, from a Fiqhi (legal) point of view, he will be absolved of his Fardh obligation. Nevertheless, he will be deprived of the blessings and fruits of a true Haj. What greater despair and remorse may we express at that person, who spends so much of money and so bravely undergoes the difficulties of the journey, yet he is deprived of the ability to repent and returns home empty handed. If a person commits an act of theft or even adultery (zina) during his Haj journey and does not even regret his despicable action, or repents for it, each and every person may well perceive the plight of his Haj. In the some way, shaving of the beard is a major sin and, in one respect, even more grievous than stealing and adultery since these two are temporary sins. A person who shaves his beard despite him performing his salat, observing fast or even donning the Ihram of Haj, subjects himself to the curse of Nabi sallallahu alaihi wa sallam and infect, involves himself in the perpetration of a major sin even during the performance of such Ibadat (devotions). Hazrat Sheikh, Maulana Muhammad Zakaria (Rahmatullahi alayhi) writes in his treatise "Dhari Ka Wujoob": When I look at such people (who shave their beards), this thought comes to mind that there is no stipulated time for death and if death has to overtake them in such a condition then what face will they present in front of Nabi sallallahu alaihi wasalam when his blessed and illuminated face will appear before them. Together with this, this thought continuously comes to mind that major sins are many, e.g. adultery, sodomy, drinking etc, but they are all temporary. Nabi sallallahu alaihi wasalam has said: "When an adulterer carries out an act of adultery he does not remain a mu'min." The Muhadditheen have interpreted this Hadeeth in this way that the light of Iman leaves a person whilst carrying out the act of adultery. However, after the deplorable act, this light of Iman returns to him. However, shaving or trimming the beard is such an act which is perpetual, may it be whilst performing Salah or Fasting or Haj. In short, it remains with a person while performing any form of worship. Therefore, it is imperative for such persons who go for Haj to rectify their distorted forms before presenting themselves in the court of Allah, sincerely repent and make a firm conviction not to return to such haram actions, or else it should not be that they be credited with this Persian lyric of Sheikh Sadi (Rahmatullah alai): "The donkey of Isa, even though it might travel to Makkah, yet when it returns, it will still remain a donkey." They should also consider as to how they will present themselves when conferring greetings at the Sacred Tomb of Nabi sallallahu alaihi wasalam and moreover what difficulty and pain will be caused to Nabi sallallahu alaihi wasalam when he will glance at their distorted faces.



Question: 6. Some people do not keep a beard saying that if we keep a beard and do some wrong action, we will be disgracing those who keep beards and showing disrespect to the beard. What is the Shari ruling with regard to such people?

Answer: The sentiment of such people outwardly seems very pleasing. It seems as if they desire to uphold the honor and status of the beard, but yet if we ponder slightly deeper, we will recognize this shaitani trick. Through this very trick, shaitan has deceived many and involved them in this haram act. Understand this from the following example: A Muslim has deceived a certain person; consequently the name of the entire Muslim brotherhood becomes blemished. Now, if shaitan deceives him to think: Because of me, the Muslims are being dishonored. Hence, (Allah forbid) I should now renegade from Islam and become a kafir? Definitely this is an action which he should never ever think of doing! Instead he should become a true Muslim and leave his misconduct. Similarly if shaitan provokes a person saying: "If you grow a beard and commit evil then the beard would be disrespected and those who are keeping beards will be disgraced. Hence, leave out this sunnah." He should never ever do this. Instead he should grow his beard and save himself from misconduct. If such people really intend to uphold and honor this sign of Islam, then logically, and from an Islamic point of view, they should lengthen their beards and refrain from misconduct and major sins. Furthermore, pray to Allah to grant to them the ability of upholding this great symbol and sign of Islam; so that on the Day of Qiyamah they could be raised up in the form and appearance of Islam and consequently be blessed with the intercession of Nabi sallallahu alaihi wasalam who had lengthened his beard. Hazrat Abu Hurairah (RA) narrates that Nabi sallallahu alaihi wasalam said: "Everyone from my ummah will enter Jannat except those who reject." The Sahabah (Radiyallahu Anhum) asked: "Who are those who reject?" Nabi sallallahu alaihi wasalam replied: "The person who follows me will enter Jannat and the person who disobeys me has rejected."
posted by Abdullah_m.e. @ 2:33 PM  
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