Letters to the Editor

Q: I would like to mention to you that your journal is awesome and splendid which has a remarkable spark. It’s my earnest request that you post an article on “Najd & Ahl al-Hadith” and the relationship between them. I would be ever grateful to you for your invaluable consideration.

Khalid Hussain,
On Email

YMD

Kindly see this month’s editorial.

Q: Esteemed Editor Sahib, I’m a regular reader of your Magazine. Would your good self-respond and educate me whether prefixing and suffixing ones name with words “Haji” and “Al-Madani,” respectfully is permissible and in accordance with the practice of Holy Prophet (saws) and his pious Companions (ra) and their followers.

Sajad Hussain,
On Email

YMD 

You must remove from your mind the notion that every little thing can be evidenced by the Qur’an and Sunnah. To seek justification for everything in religion, from the Qur’an and Sunnah or practices of the Salaf is an innovation popularized by a new group whose slogan is Qur’an and Sunnah, but who know neither the Qur’an nor the Sunnah and so, have popularized certain innovations.

For a million things we depend on our reason and common sense. Those who miss the two, are as lost as those who think that with the help of slogans, and threats to those who see their error, they can turn back Time. They think that if they hung by the clock’s hands, in sufficient number of fanatics, they will turn back the Time. But Time will move on, and take them along with it. Reason and common sense then, must be first used to determine a direction, before others are asked. The saying: “He who has no reason, has no religion,” is sometimes reported as a hadith, but it is not. Yet, its meaning is valid.

Now, if someone calls himself as Haji because he has performed a Hajj, then what blame does he earn? If another is from Madinah, or has lived in Madinah for a couple of decades, then, why the legitimacy be questionable if he calls himself Madani? They do not need the support of the Qur’an and Sunnah.

Q: Apropos your article in YMD on Usury, Interest and Riba (March 2015), your observations are, indeed, insightful. My queries are: How should interest credited in savings account be dealt with? What purposes can it be used (without expecting any reward from Allah (swt))? You keep talking about Muslims doing humanitarian work for all – should it be used for that? 

YMD

Interest money could be used for carrying out humanitarian works, such as, for feeding the slum-dwellers, helping out those affected by floods, earthquake, etc.

Q: Agreed that economic growth using interest is a myth propagated by the West. Also agreed that there is no obligation to grow your business in Islam – rather an obligation to avoid interest – Islam, nevertheless, allows/ promotes other models for enabling access to capital. Since these models are not mainstreamed (at least in India) yet, what should be the strategy for Muslims here to develop their economic strength and confidence?

Abdul Rahim,
On Email

YMD

It is not the lack of capital that restricts Muslims’ economic growth. It is lack of honesty and integrity. Millions of Muslims over the world are sitting on small and big savings, which can be tapped to start mega-projects, but the people do not trust individuals or bodies that promise big returns, but actually embezzle and disappear without remorse. Several such cases have been reported in recent times.

Want of right men for right jobs, when businesses are started from public funds, has been a problem too. But that, too, is the result of dishonesty on the part of those who appointed the wrong men for wrong jobs, despite knowing their deficiencies, and dishonesty on the part of those who jumped into important posts, despite the knowledge that they did not qualify. The businesses collapsed, and the men entrusted disappeared, to re-emerge in new ventures until the public lost confidence in their kind, and prefers to sit on its savings than take new risks.

The second Ameer of Tableegh, Mawlana Yusuf, was accurate in his answer when he was asked as to why Tableeghi Jamat should not venture into humanitarian and development works. He said, “So long as the reformatory work has not been done, every other unified effort towards community development, is bound to fail.”

Q: Since last year I am a regular reader of your monthly magazine; really thankful to you for such a boonful knowledge. I had one question: Can we place fish-pots or fish aquariums in our homes?

Dr. Sumera Pasha, 
On Email

YMD

You might be aware that Islam is highly human-friendly. Keeping pet animals, (whether cats, birds, rabbits, fish, etc.) would all be allowable if the cost and care-time remains nominal. But if the cost goes higher than, say, the cost of adopting an abandoned orphan, even if it is a non-Muslim orphan, then it would be objectionable to ignore the orphan and go after animals. Now, if somebody claims that he can afford both: an orphan as well as pets costing as much as the orphan, then, he will be suggested to adopt a second orphan, and keep pets at reasonably low costs.

The West – self-acclaimed holder of human rights – is unaware of such fine legal directions; while the first to demonstrate was the Prophet himself, who had adopted `Ali when a child.

Q: Suppose a guy burrows 10,000 bucks from someone. He repays it after ten years during which devaluation of the currency has taken place. Does he have to repay only the money he borrowed or does he have to make adjustments so as to compensate the devaluation?

Tahir Alee, 
On Email

YMD

One wrong leads to another. Why should anyone, a Muslim, borrow and not repay for ten years? He knows that the Prophet (saws) would not pray at a man’s grave if he left debt unpaid.

By law, you are not required to pay anything extra due to fluctuation of the money-value, whether occurring naturally, or by an external agency, such as, the government. But if you see a fluctuation and feel sorry for your crime of not returning within a reasonable period, you might add whatever you can to the original sum that was borrowed.

The lender, however, may not make any such demand, small or big. He had the right to take the issue to the court when repayment was delayed; but he cannot demand more.

Q: Why can’t we form a central Bait-ul-Maal at national level?

Sameer Ahmad, 
On Email

YMD

Why can’t you?

Q: It is a great pleasure for me that I have learned about Ummaland. I studied a lot from Google and started using that site. Unfortunately, I found some obstacles. If those can be settled by the authority, I think it will be the pioneer in global Muslim help. I strongly support the endeavour.

Aminur Rahman,
On Email

Q: If one’s parents are consenting to the idea of their son migrating to the U.S., and instead the son takes that consent and migrates to a different place like into an Islamic State, would that count as disobedience to one’s parents?

LMN Nadheer, 
On Email

YMD

Parent’s rights are not infringed upon in such matters. Unless they are handicapped, too old, poor, or unable to attend to their personal needs, their permission is not required for a son to migrate.

However, the son must return if the situation of the parents changes, such as, they becoming senile, or diseased, etc. If he did not return, and, was not able to appoint a faithful nurse, and the parents suffer, then he will be sinning, especially, when he happens to be the only son.

As for migration to a Western country like USA (if Trump would allow it), while an option to migrate to a Muslim country is available, it would be an act of sin. If a man is not wholly hard put, migration to a Western country for the so-called “better prospects,” would be migration to evil and un-rewardable. The example of those who migrate simply for material reasons, such as “career prospects,” is given in the Qur’an (7: 176).

Q: While purchasing a pair of shoes online, I came to know that some part of shoes (inner lining) is made of pig skin. When I tried finding about use of such products in Islam, I came know that it’s Haraam to use products made of pig skin. What is the ruling in Islam regarding use of products made of pig skin?

YMD

There is no difference in the rulings coming from the four schools of Fiqh that the skin of pigs and humans cannot be made use of in any way. That prohibition applies to their leather also, that is, the skin that has been tanned and converted to leather. The prohibition of pig’s skin is because it is Najis, (unclean); none of its body parts can be made use of in any way. As for human skin, it is not Najis, but its use is prohibited out of its reverence.

Q: Do we have brands which do not use pig skin, especially here, in India?

M. K.,
On Email

YMD

It appears we are pretty poor at market and product research.

Q: I was reading a book, The Canon, by Natalie Angier, in which she explains some basic science in an amazing way by providing amazing data. She gives some amazing data about Time. When I read that portion I remembered the Surah al-Asr. The relation between the first verse and the amazing data. After a little bit of effort, I put my understanding as an article. The article is an attached file with email. 

Sameer Ahmad,
On Email

YMD

While we thank you for your reflections, we do not find reproducing what happens to be common observations on Time to be of special benefit. Nonetheless we reproduce here an excerpt from the book forwarded by you. It says:

“What happens….in subsections of seconds? In a tenth of a second, we find the proverbial ‘blink of an eye’ for that’s how long the act takes. In a hundredth of a second, a hummingbird can beat its wings once… A millisecond, 10-3 seconds is the time it takes a typical camera strobe to flash. Five-thousandths of a second is also the time it takes a Mexican Salamander… to snatch its prey. In one microsecond, 10-6 seconds, nerves can send a message from that pain in your neck to your brain… In a nanosecond, 10-9 – microprocessor adds together two numbers…Attosecond, a billionth of a billionth of a second, an electron takes twenty-four attoseconds to complete a single orbit in a hydrogen atom…a voyage that the electron makes about 40,000 trillion times per second.” [From: The Canon, by Natalie Angier].

We have reproduced the above as received from you. We have neither checked the data nor the spellings.