Letters to the Editor
Praising One Another
Zeeshan, via email
In December 2002 issue you have, although being a good scholar, started criticizing others like Dr. Zakir Naik. You ask why he has not suggested you to read Qur’an and sunnah regarding prayer and make your own judgment. If this is true then why have you yourself written so many books? Why do you not ask, in every answer that you give, to read Qur’an and Sunnah and make your own judgment?
It was no criticism at all, but a lacuna was pointed out. If, as some people say that one need not follow any Maslak, then, why do they not quote Qur’an and hadith alone when asked a legal question? That is the point we have raised.
Even you have in your last answer suggested a book by Dr. Muhammad Hashim Kamali. When you can suggest one book then why can’t Dr. Naik?
Anyone can suggest any author. But we should all follow some rules and principles.
Dr.Naik has never suggested that you don’t read Qur’an and Sunnah butread only a particular book regarding prayers. But, naturally, to understand Qur’an and Sunnah in right perspective, he suggested that we take the help of such and such books.
So long as general Islamic topics are concerned, such an approach is right and keeping with the Islamic spirit. But when Fiqh is involved, then reading this or that writer might not be fully satisfactory. Hence we have been suggesting people follow one of the Masaliks in pure Figh matters.
If your logic is correct, then why should we read YMD? Every one can read Qur’an and Sunnah. But can they make their own judgments?
If you give up reading YMD because you are devoting all the time you have for to study of the Qur’an and Sunnah, then, you would be doing the right thing. But if you have spare time, then YMD is quite a nice magazine for one to dip his nose into.
Why is there a “Question & Answers” column when we can read Qur’an and Sunnah and make our own judgments?
In addition to other benefits, this column awakens some people’s faculty of criticism, which proves beneficial for many.
We Muslims have the work to unite each other but not to criticize unless if some one amongst us is going against the Islamic shari’ah. Let’s say good points about each other rather than criticizing each other so that this world will be united into a single community: Islam.
It will be a great disaster if everybody starts praising everybody else.
Sorry, if I hurt you, I may be wrong with my views because I’m not a scholar like you, if it is so let me know the truth but with proof.
Let’s divide the work between ourselves. We give the views, you work out the proofs – that will be far more beneficial to you than getting answers cladded with proofs.
I recommend people to read YMD even though some times I don’t agree with your suggestions.
Genetically there is nothing wrong with YMD, so your advice sounds reasonable.
Zoheb Farhan, via email
Some people say that the facial hairs of the Prophet, peace be upon him, are preserved and they are exhibited on Milad-un-Nabi in mosques. Are they authentic? Please elaborate.
The ever increasing number of hairs from the Prophet cast doubt on the original, if there was one.
Are we supposed to feed our pet animals (felines) halal meat?
Yes. Just as it is necessary that you should feed yourself with the Halal, it is necessary that when you buy animal feed, it should be out of halal earning.
Muj Ali, via email
Can we buy motorbike if financed by a Bank?
If financing is on interest, then no.
Is waleemah unlawful before khilwah?
Waleemah is to celebrate Nikah, so, it can be offered immediately after the Nikah ceremony.
Can we offer Prayers behind an Imam who speaks out indecent words?
If the mosque closest to you has this kind of Imam then you have no alternative. His foul-mouthedness will not have any effect on your Prayer. You cannot do Prayers apart from the congregation because of this reason.
Abida Thoker, via email
I had a lot of queries which on consecutively reading YMD issues got almost cleared. However I have some questions.
Allah’s command, “Be, and it is,” runs contrary to Allah making the earth in six days.
Firstly, Allah made the heavens and the earth in six days, and not the earth alone in six days. The earth was made in two days. Its furnishing – so to say – took four days. See the Qur’an 41: 9,10.
Secondly, you did not understand the sentence “Be, and it is,” in its right perspective. What it purports to say is: When Allah decrease a thing to be in six days, it happens in six days.
When He intends the earth’s appearance in two days, it appears in two days.
When He intends its furnishing in four days, it happens in four days.
When He intends an infant in the womb in nine months, it takes nine months.
When He intends a thing, that it should come into existence instantaneously then He says “kun” and lo! It is.
Again, counting of days depends upon the rotation of the earth. How could the days be counted when the earth did not exist?
Now should the wisdom of the scholars dawn upon you who have said that the allusion by “ayyaam” is to “periods” or “epochs” and not to the twenty-four hour cycle.
This is also pointed out by a Jewish scholar who said that the original word in the Bible for “days” is used in Hebrew for “epochs.” But the problem is that the Bible adds the words, “the evening and the morning,” leaving no doubt that it is the 24-hour cycle that is meant. To quote the whole passage:
“And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.
And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness. And God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And the evening and the morning were the first day.
And God said, Let there be a firmament in the midst of waters, and let it divide the waters from the waters. And God made the firmament, and divided the waters which were under the firmament from the waters which were above the firmament: and it was so. And God called the firmament Heaven.And the evening and the morning were the second day.”
It goes on, until the first chapter of the Bible ends with the verse:
“And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day.”
So, although the Jewish scholar points out the true meaning of the textual Hebrew word as actually referring to epochs, he, very comfortably forgets to quote the verses (leaving Bush to quote the Bible for the support of a new brand of Jews and Christians for Middle-eastern bloody adventures).
Neither the Qur’an nor its commentators have said that the six “ayyaam” of the Qur’an refer to the 24-hour, or morning and evening cycles.
Are the long-time subscriptions – that you, and many other publishers offer – permissible in Islam? When nobody knows the future, can a company guarantee continuous publication of its product?
If the allusion by you is to the subscription drive covering long periods, you are right about the uncertainty of the future, and hence subscription for life, or lengthy periods should be discouraged. We discourage our salesmen from doing this. If they do, a clause must be added that the deed is subject to the continued appearance of the publication. It must be clearly stated that if the publication closes down, the long-term subscriber will not be entitled to refund.
Despite religious denunciation, tombs are common in mosques, churches, temples, gurudwara even at some graves. Why is this so and what is their significance?
The significance is man’s refusal to bow down his head completely to God and willingness to serve the Devil.
According to shari’ah (Islamic law) what is the proportionate share of property of a widow from in-laws who are alive? As Islam does not divest one’s right, kindly elaborate without asking me to consult fiqh or such and such book?
Since the question is unclear, Fiqh or other books cannot also supply the answer. It is advised that you take a clear practical, meaning real, example, and supply all the surrounding details.
Pilgrims (during Hajj) are asked photographs whereas photography is prohibited in Islam. Is it not a sin?
Muslims are part of a big system, designed and controlled by other than Muslims. They, as those who refused to lead the nations, must bend down to every rule, Islamic or non-Islamic, from this position of collective impotency.
Growing beard is a discussed question. In my view the question is still in question until the answer will be in “yes” or “no”. Now, again: is growing beard compulsory for a Muslim?
The detailed explanations were meant to challenge your commitment to Islam and answer whether it is yes or no.
My son (baby) was circumcised at birth but defectively. Is there need for repetition?
In matters of circumcision, only a doctor’s examination, determination, and consequent decision about repetition, can be a proper suggestion.
You write “YMD” rather than the name of a person by whom the questions are answered. This method suggests that the answers are worked out around a round table. Right/wrong?
Md. Danish Aejaz, U.P.
I have a question: can an Ansari marry (nikah) a Khan girl? Are there any Islamic rules in this regard?
The Islamic guideline for choosing spouses is well-known: choose the most religious. Islam has done away with all other relationship leaving only those based on taqwa (piety) and ukhuwwa (brotherhood).
A Researcher's Task
Hiaz, via email
I have to present a paper on environment and therefore require some ayas relating to environment.
We think we will be sinning by researching on your behalf. After all we will have no share in the degree or certificate that you will earn. To make the degree one hundred percent Halal to you, you ought to do this part of the research also.
Happiness and Possessions
M. R., Kashmir
I am a 19-year-old Muslim boy, medical entrance student, living in Kashmir, India. My parents are both doctors. Thanks to Allah that He has made u financially very sound.
I need your valuable guidance about how once can control his sexual urge. How do you think I can make my nafs fully obedient and submissive. My lack of control over my nafs leads me to some sins.
Please don’t disclose my identity.
Happiness in life is one thing, financial success another. There are many in the world, in millions, who are financially successful, which had been the sole objective of their lives, but they are unhappy.
This happens to be the situation, spread all over the world, (and with specific reference to the Muslims) because after abandoning Islam as a source of guidance, many Muslims fell into a Shaytanic trap, first laid in the West. In the new scheme of life, happiness has been equated with material possessions. In the next step, worldly possessions have been replaced by money, shares, properties, jewelry, etc. Finally, these things, wealth in one word) has been assumed as a synonym of happiness. That is, possession of these things, it is thought, does not bring in happiness, but rather, happiness=possessions. In other words, to have material possessions is to be happy, and, if somebody is unhappy despite possessions, then, he is mentally imbalanced.
In your case, you declare that you are a medical student, which, in a country like India, is affordable by the well-to-do alone. You also admit that financially your family is well off? But you are unhappy. Why? Because in today’s Muslim society, the family, and the home, a basic human need after full maturity is considered no need at all, and no necessity worth taking into account. It is assumed that you are happy. Why should you not be happy when you are financially well-off? This is what today’s Muslim society, Muslim family, and Muslim homefolk cannot understand.
There is no solution to the problem unless people around you stop looking at you as a money earning machine: like the slots of the gambling machines in USA. The family is the machine; you are one of the slots.
Your society must start looking at you as a human, first and human last: a human worthier than the degree you are working for. Your society must start loving you, and not what are you are expected to earn after the completion of your studies. You must become important to them, and not what your money can buy for you in future.
If you become important, if the people around you begin to love you more than they love your degree, your ability to bring in handsome salary (after five or six years), and your ability to buy the things of this world (after 8-10 years), then, and only then, basic needs of you and your likes will be considered sympathetically.
In your case, there is no need for you to suppress your natural desires and urges. Your parents are well off. Any one of them can support your wife without any inconvenience. But you have two earning parents. When nature made the demand on you for sugar, your parents provided you with chocolates. Now, when nature is making a stronger demand for a spouse, your parents – if they love you as their offspring, no matter what you are or will become – must provide you with a spouse, and not make you wait until: (a) You have a degree (a) find a good job (c) get well-settled in life, even if (d) the best days of youth are behind you, and you are close to entering into middle-age.
It is not enough that we look at problems without looking at the true causes, and the true solutions. If someone refuses diagnosis and medications, then, he should not complain of diseases.
Fiqh for Minorities
In the article titled “Towards a Fiqh for Muslim Minorities” Yoginder Sikand has enumerated, in detail, the proposals made by Al-Alwani for the new FIQH. The article is an eye opener. Our ulema need to rethink before they issue any Fatwa. However on page 29 it has been written). He (Al-Alwai) even quotes the Prophet to legitimize his call for jurisprudential dynamism. He cites the example of the Prophet having initially advised his followers against visiting graveyards but later having permitted it. In this context I would be glad if you could produce the whole text of the Hadith in question and your comments.
A. Danwad, via email
The whole text is more or less what you have quoted. But since the latter part is not as often quoted, we reproduce here:
كنت نهيتكم عن زيارة القبور، فزوروا القبور؛ فإنها تزهد في الدنيا وتذكر الآخرة
“I used to prevent you from visiting the graves. You may now visit the graves for, it helps break this world’s love and reminds of the Hereafter.”
The second half, “it helps break..” is quite often not quoted because those who live by the dead, want the people to visit the tombs for their own benefits, whereas the hadith allows the visit for the benefit of those in the tombs. If people know the truth about why they should in reality visit the graves, they will stop flocking to the graves (meaning less income for the mujaawars). After all, the people care a hoot for the dead in the tombs.
Back to the subject, there is no need for the scholars to re-shape their what the minority wants, or like in many so-called Muslim countries, what the rulers want, nor yet, what the majority wants, but rather what the truth demands.
I am from Hyderabad (India). Presently I am pursuing Master’s in E-commerce from Lule university of technology (SWEDEN). Sweden and other Scandinavian countries provide free education for the students from Asian countries. I think that this is a great opportunity for Muslim student from India who want to pursue further education in foreign country. By choosing to study in Scandinavia, students can save lots of money which they pay as tuition fee in Australia, America,
UK, New Zealand and other English speaking countries. I want to know whether your site or print magazine (if any) can provide any opportunity for me to write articles in this regard so that Muslim students are made aware of this opportunity.
Tariq Mohiuddin Ahmed, via email
Hopefully your letter to us will receive sufficient attention from our readers.
Disorders and Remedies
I have been subscribing to your magazine for about three months and very much appreciate the services you are doing to humanity particularly the Muslims. I have a question that troubles me and I wish to have a clear answer based on Islamic teachings. Is it alright to take aphrodisiac like cialis, viagra? Do they have any side effects for first time users?
I highly appreciate any response in this regard as soon as possible or if you can direct me to appropriate authorities or organizations, it will be helpful to me.
We do not find ourselves in a position to answer medical questions. You will have to look into a clinic, explain your disorders and seek remedies.
For Allah's Sake
I am in love with a girl and (I decided that I will marry her only) it is known only to me and to Allah and now to you. I have not told to the girl I love. In the meantime, I came to know that Allah will be pleased with the person who will give up his beloved thing for His sake. So I decided that I will give up my love. But now I am thinking of marrying her. The question is, if I marry her will I be a sinner.
Md. Azeez Khan, via email
It is incorrect to say that Allah is pleased with a person who gives up a thing he loves, for His sake. But rather, this applies to cases where one loves something forbidden in Islam. Otherwise, there is no sin involved in marrying a person one thinks he loves.