Ruling on music, singing and dancing(IslamQA)

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Praise be to Allaah.
Ma’aazif is the plural of mi’zafah,
and refers to musical instruments
(Fath al-Baari, 10/55),
instruments which are played (al-
Majmoo’, 11/577). Al-Qurtubi
(may Allaah have mercy on him)
narrated from al-Jawhari (may
Allaah have mercy on him) that
ma’aazif means singing. In his
Sihaah it says that it means
musical instruments. It was also
said that it refers to the sound of
the instruments. In al-Hawaashi
by al-Dimyaati (may Allaah have
mercy on him) it says: ma’aazif
means drums (dufoof, sing. daff)
and other instruments which are
struck or beaten (Fath al-Baari,
Evidence of prohibition in the
Qur’aan and Sunnah:
Allaah says in Soorat Luqmaan
(interpretation of the meaning):
“And of mankind is he who
purchases idle talks (i.e. music,
singing) to mislead (men) from
the path of Allaah…” [Luqmaan
31:6] The scholar of the ummah, Ibn
‘Abbaas (may Allaah be pleased
with him) said: this means
singing. Mujaahid (may Allaah
have mercy on him) said: this
means playing the drum (tabl).
(Tafseer al-Tabari, 21/40).
Al-Hasan al-Basri (may Allaah
have mercy on him) said: this
aayah was revealed concerning
singing and musical instruments
(lit. woodwind instruments).
(Tafseer Ibn Katheer, 3/451).
Al-Sa’di (may Allaah have mercy
on him) said: this includes all
manner of haraam speech, all idle
talk and falsehood, and all
nonsense that encourages kufr
and disobedience; the words of
those who say things to refute the
truth and argue in support of
falsehood to defeat the truth; and
backbiting, slander, lies, insults
and curses; the singing and
musical instruments of the
Shaytaan; and musical
instruments which are of no
spiritual or worldly benefit.
(Tafseer al-Sa’di, 6/150)
Ibn al-Qayyim (may Allaah have
mercy on him) said: The
interpretation of the Sahaabah
and Taabi’in, that ‘idle talk’ refers
to singing, is sufficient. This was
reported with saheeh isnaads
from Ibn ‘Abbaas and Ibn
Mas’ood. Abu’l-Sahbaa’ said: I
asked Ibn Mas’ood about the
aayah (interpretation of the
‘“And of mankind is he who
purchases idle talks’ [Luqmaan
31:6]. He said: By Allaah, besides
Whom there is no other god, this
means singing – and he repeated
it three times. It was also reported
with a saheeh isnaad from Ibn
‘Umar (may Allaah be pleased
with them both) that this means
singing. There is no contradiction
between the interpretation of “idle
talk” as meaning singing and the
interpretation of it as meaning
stories of the Persians and their
kings, and the kings of the
Romans, and so on, such as al-
Nadr ibn al-Haarith used to tell to
the people of Makkah to distract
them from the Qur’aan. Both of
them are idle talk. Hence Ibn
‘Abbaas said: “Idle talk” is
falsehood and singing. Some of
the Sahaabah said one and some
said the other, and some said
both. Singing is worse and more
harmful than stories of kings,
because it leads to zinaa and
makes hypocrisy grow (in the
heart); it is the trap of the
Shaytaan, and it clouds the mind.
The way in which it blocks people
from the Qur’aan is worse than
the way in which other kinds of
false talk block them, because
people are naturally inclined
towards it and tend to want to
listen to it. The aayaat condemn
replacing the Qur’aan with idle
talk in order to mislead (men)
from the path of Allaah without
knowledge and taking it as a joke,
because when an aayah of the
Qur’aan is recited to such a
person, he turns his back as if he
heard them not, as if there were
deafness in his ear. If he hears
anything of it, he makes fun of it.
All of this happens only in the
case of the people who are most
stubbornly kaafirs and if some of
it happens to singers and those
who listen to them, they both
have a share of this blame.
(Ighaathat al-Lahfaan, 1/258-259)
Allaah says (interpretation of the
“[Allaah said to Iblees:] And
befool them gradually those
whom you can among them with
your voice (i.e. songs, music, and
any other call for Allaah’s
disobedience)…” [al-Israa’ 17:64] It was narrated that Mujaahid
(may Allaah have mercy on him)
said: “And befool them gradually
those whom you can among them
with your voice” – his voice [the
voice of Iblees/Shaytaan] is
singing and falsehood. Ibn al-
Qayyim (may Allaah have mercy
on him) said: This idaafah
[possessive or genitive
construction, i.e., your voice] serves to make the meaning
specific, as with the phrases
[translated as] “your cavalry” and
“your infantry” [later in the same
aayah]. Everyone who speaks in
any way that is not obedient to
Allaah, everyone who blows into
a flute or other woodwind
instrument, or who plays any
haraam kind of drum, this is the
voice of the Shaytaan. Everyone
who walks to commit some act of
disobedience towards Allaah is
part of his [the Shaytaan’s] infantry, and anyone who rides to
commit sin is part of his cavalry.
This is the view of the Salaf, as
Ibn ‘Abi Haatim narrated from Ibn
‘Abbaas: his infantry is everyone
who walks to disobey Allaah.
(Ighaathat al-Lahfaan).
Allaah says (interpretation of the
“Do you then wonder at this
recitation (the Qur’aan)?
And you laugh at it and weep not,
Wasting your (precious) lifetime in
pastime and amusements
[al-Najm 53:59-61] ‘Ikrimah (may Allaah have mercy
on him) said: it was narrated from
Ibn ‘Abbaas that al-sumood
[verbal noun from saamidoon,
translated here as
“Wasting your (precious) lifetime
in pastime and amusements
(singing)”] means “singing”, in the
dialect of Himyar; it might be said
“Ismidi lanaa” [‘sing for us’ – from
the same root as saamidoon/
sumood] meaning “ghaniy” [sing].
And he said (may Allaah have
mercy on him): When they [the
kuffaar] heard the Qur’aan, they
would sing, then this aayah was
Ibn Katheer (may Allaah have
mercy on him) said: Allaah says
(interpretation of the meaning)
“Wasting your (precious) lifetime
in pastime and amusements
(singing)” – Sufyaan al-Thawri
said, narrating from his father
from Ibn ‘Abbaas: (this means)
singing. This is Yemeni (dialect):
ismad lana means ghan lana
[sing to us]. This was also the
view of ‘Ikrimah.
(Tafseer Ibn Katheer).
It was reported from Abu
Umaamah (may Allaah be
pleased with him) that the
Messenger of Allaah (peace and
blessings of Allaah be upon him)
said: “Do not sell singing slave
women, do not buy them and do
not teach them. There is nothing
good in this trade, and their price
is haraam. Concerning such
things as this the aayah was
revealed (interpretation of the
meaning): ‘And of mankind is he
who purchases idle talks (i.e.
music, singing) to mislead (men)
from the path of
Allaah…’ [Luqmaan 31:6].”
(Hasan hadeeth)
The Messenger of Allaah (peace
and blessings of Allaah be upon
him) said:
“Among my ummah there will
certainly be people who permit
zinaa, silk, alcohol and musical
(Narrated by al-Bukhaari
ta’leeqan, no. 5590; narrated as
mawsool by al-Tabaraani and al-
Bayhaqi. See al-Silsilah al-
Saheehah by al-Albaani, 91).
Ibn al-Qayyim (may Allaah have
mercy on him) said: This is a
saheeh hadeeth narrated by al-
Bukhaari in his Saheeh, where he
quoted it as evidence and stated
that it is mu’allaq and majzoom.
He said: Chapter on what was
narrated concerning those who
permit alcohol and call it by
another name.
This hadeeth indicates in two
ways that musical instruments
and enjoyment of listening to
music are haraam. The first is the
fact that the Prophet (peace and
blessings of Allaah be upon him)
said: “[they] permit” which clearly
indicates that the things
mentioned, including musical
instruments, are haraam
according to sharee’ah, but those
people will permit them. The
second is the fact that musical
instruments are mentioned
alongside things which are
definitely known to be haraam,
i.e., zinaa and alcohol: if they
(musical instruments) were not
haraam, why would they be
mentioned alongside these
(adapted from al-Silsilah al-
Saheehah by al-Albaani,
Shaykh al-Islam (Ibn Taymiyah)
(may Allaah have mercy on him)
said: This hadeeth indicates that
ma’aazif are haraam, and
ma’aazif means musical
instruments according to the
scholars of (Arabic) language.
This word includes all such
(al-Majmoo’, 11/535).
Ibn al-Qayyim (may Allaah have
mercy on him) said: And
concerning the same topic similar
comments were narrated from
Sahl ibn Sa’d al-Saa’idi, ‘Imraan
ibn Husayn, ‘Abd-Allaah ibn ‘Amr,
‘Abd-Allaah ibn ‘Abbaas, Abu
Hurayrah, Abu Umaamah al-
Baahili, ‘Aa’ishah Umm al-
Mu’mineen, ‘Ali ibn Abi Taalib,
Anas ibn Maalik, ‘Abd al-
Rahmaan ibn Saabit and al-
Ghaazi ibn Rabee’ah. Then he
mentioned it in Ighaathat al-
Lahfaan, and it indicates that they
(musical instruments) are
It was narrated that Naafi’ (may
Allaah have mercy on him) said:
Ibn ‘Umar heard a woodwind
instrument, and he put his fingers
in his ears and kept away from
that path. He said to me, O Naafi’,
can you hear anything? I said,
No. So he took his fingers away
from his ears and said: I was with
the Prophet (peace and blessings
of Allaah be upon him) and he
heard something like this, and he
did the same thing.
(Saheeh Abi Dawood). Some
insignificant person said that this
hadeeth does not prove that
musical instruments are haraam,
because if that were so, the
Messenger of Allaah (peace and
blessings of Allaah be upon him)
would have instructed Ibn ‘Umar
(may Allaah be pleased with them
both) to put his fingers in his ears
as well, and Ibn ‘Umar would
have instructed Naafi’ to do
likewise! The response to this is:
He was not listening to it, but he
could hear it. There is a difference
between listening and hearing.
Shaykh al-Islam (Ibn Taymiyah)
(may Allaah have mercy on him)
said: Concerning (music) which a
person does not intend to listen
to, there is no prohibition or
blame, according to scholarly
consensus. Hence blame or
praise is connected to listening,
not to hearing. The one who
listens to the Qur’aan will be
rewarded for it, whereas the one
who hears it without intending or
wanting to will not be rewarded
for that, because actions are
judged by intentions. The same
applies to musical instruments
which are forbidden: if a person
hears them without intending to,
that does not matter. (al-Majmoo’,
Ibn Qudaamah al-Maqdisi (may
Allaah have mercy on him) said:
the listener is the one who
intends to hear, which was not the
case with Ibn ‘Umar (may Allaah
be pleased with them both); what
happened in his case was
hearing. The Prophet (peace and
blessings of Allaah be upon him)
needed to know when the sound
stopped because he had moved
away from that path and blocked
his ears. So he did not want to go
back to that path or unblock his
ears until the noise had stopped,
so when he allowed Ibn ‘Umar to
continue hearing it, this was
because of necessity.
(al-Mughni, 10/173)
(Even though the hearing referred
to in the comments of the two
imaams is makrooh, it was
permitted because of necessity,
as we will see below in the
comments of Imaam Maalik (may
Allaah have mercy on him). And
Allaah knows best).
The views of the scholars
(imaams) of Islam
Al-Qaasim (may Allaah have
mercy on him) said: Singing is
part of falsehood. Al-Hasan (may
Allaah have mercy on him) said: if
there is music involved in a dinner
invitation (waleemah), do not
accept the invitation
(al-Jaami by al-Qayrawaani, p.
Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah
(may Allaah have mercy on him)
said: The view of the four Imaams
is that all kinds of musical
instruments are haraam. It was
reported in Saheeh al-Bukhaari
and elsewhere that the Prophet
(peace and blessings of Allaah be
upon him) said that there would
be among his ummah those who
would allow zinaa, silk, alcohol
and musical instruments, and he
said that they would be
transformed into monkeys and
pigs… None of the followers of
the imaams mentioned any
dispute concerning the matter of
(al-Majmoo’, 11/576).
Al-Albaani (may Allaah have
mercy on him) said: The four
madhhabs are agreed that all
musical instruments are haraam.
(al-Saheehah, 1/145).
Ibn al-Qayyim (may Allaah have
mercy on him) said: The
madhhab of Abu Haneefah is the
strictest in this regard, and his
comments are among the
harshest. His companions clearly
stated that it is haraam to listen to
all musical instruments such as
the flute and the drum, even
tapping a stick. They stated that it
is a sin which implies that a
person is a faasiq (rebellious evil
doer) whose testimony should be
rejected. They went further than
that and said that listening to
music is fisq (rebellion, evildoing)
and enjoying it is kufr (disbelief).
This is their words. They narrated
in support of that a hadeeth which
could not be attributed to the
Prophet (peace and blessings of
Allaah be upon him). They said:
he should try not to hear it if he
passes by it or it is in his vicinity.
Abu Yoosuf said, concerning a
house from which could be heard
the sound of musical instruments:
Go in without their permission,
because forbidding evil actions is
obligatory, and if it were not
allowed to enter without
permission, people could not
have fulfilled the obligatory duty
(of enjoining what is good and
forbidding what is evil).
(Ighaathat al-Lahfaan, 1/425).
Imaam Maalik (may Allaah have
mercy on him) was asked about
playing the drum or flute, if a
person happens to hear the
sound and enjoy it whilst he is
walking or sitting. He said: He
should get up if he finds that he
enjoys it, unless he is sitting
down for a need or is unable to
get up. If he is on the road, he
should either go back or move on.
(al-Jaami’ by al-Qayrawaani, 262)
. He (may Allaah have mercy on
him) said: “The only people who
do things like that, in our view, are
faasiqs.” (Tafseer al-Qurtubi,
Ibn ‘Abd al-Barr (may Allaah have
mercy on him) said: Among the
types of earnings which are
haraam by scholarly consensus
are ribaa, the fee of a prostitute,
anything forbidden, bribes,
payment for wailing over the dead
and singing, payments to fortune-
tellers and those who claim to
know the unseen and astrologers,
payments for playing flutes, and
all kinds of gambling.
Ibn al-Qayyim (may Allaah have
mercy on him) said, explaining
the view of Imaam al-Shaafa’i: His
companions who know his
madhhab (point of view) stated
that it is haraam and denounced
those who said that he permitted
(Ighaathat al-Lahfaan, 1/425).
The author of Kifaayat al-
Akhbaar, who was one of the
Shaafa’is, counted musical
instruments such as flutes and
others, as being munkar (evil),
and the one who is present
(where they are being played)
should denounce them. (He
cannot be excused by the fact
that there are bad scholars,
because they are corrupting the
sharee’ah, or evil faqeers –
meaning the Sufis, because they
call themselves fuqaraa’ or
faqeers – because they are
ignorant and follow anyone who
makes noise; they are not guided
by the light of knowledge; rather
they are blown about by every
(Kifaayat al-Akhbaar, 2/128).
Ibn al-Qayyim (may Allaah have
mercy on him) said: With regard
to the view of Imaam Ahmad, his
son ‘Abd-Allaah said: I asked my
father about singing. He said:
Singing makes hypocrisy grow in
the heart; I do not like it. Then he
mentioned the words of Maalik:
the evildoers (faasiqs) among us
do that.
(Ighaathat al-Lahfaan).
Ibn Qudaamah, the researcher of
the Hanbali madhhab – (may
Allaah have mercy on him) said:
Musical instruments are of three
types which are haraam. These
are the strings and all kinds of
flute, and the lute, drum and
rabaab (stringed instrument) and
so on. Whoever persists in
listening to them, his testimony
should be rejected.
(al-Mughni, 10/173). And he said
(may Allaah have mercy on him);
If a person is invited to a
gathering in which there is
something objectionable, such as
wine and musical instruments,
and he is able to denounce it,
then he should attend and speak
out against it, because then he
will be combining two obligatory
duties. If he is not able to do that,
then he should not attend. (al-
Kaafi, 3/118)
Al-Tabari (may Allaah have mercy
on him) said: The scholars of all
regions are agreed that singing is
makrooh and should be
prevented. Although Ibraaheem
ibn Sa’d and ‘Ubayd-Allaah
al-‘Anbari differed from the
majority, (it should be noted that)
the Messenger of Allaah (peace
and blessings of Allaah be upon
him) said: “Adhere to the
majority.” And whoever dies
differing from the majority, dies as
a jaahili.
(Tafseer al-Qurtubi, 14/56). In
earlier generations, the word
“makrooh” was used to mean
haraam, then it took on the
meaning of “disliked”. But this is
to be understood as meaning that
it is forbidden, because he [al-
Tabari] said “it should be
prevented”, and nothing is to be
prevented except that which is
haraam; and because in the two
hadeeths quoted, music is
denounced in the strongest terms.
Al-Qurtubi (may Allaah have
mercy on him) is the one who
narrated this report, then he said:
Abu’l-Faraj and al-Qaffaal among
our companions said: the
testimony of the singer and the
dancer is not to be accepted. I
say: if it is proven that this matter
is not permissible, then accepting
payment for it is not permissible
Shaykh al-Fawzaan (may Allaah
preserve him) said: What
Ibraaheem ibn Sa’d and ‘Ubayd-
Allaah al-‘Anbari said about
singing is not like the kind of
singing that is known nowadays,
for they would never have
allowed this kind of singing which
is the utmost in immorality and
Ibn Taymiyah (may Allaah have
mercy on him) said: It is not
permissible to make musical
(al-Majmoo’, 22/140). And he
said: According to the majority of
fuqahaa’, it is permissible to
destroy musical instruments, such
as the tanboor [a stringed
instrument similar to a mandolin].
This is the view of Maalik and is
the more famous of the two views
narrated from Ahmad. (al-
Majmoo’, 28/113). And he said:
…Ibn al-Mundhir mentioned that
the scholars were agreed that it is
not permissible to pay people to
sing and wail… the consensus of
all the scholars whose views we
have learned about is that wailing
and singing are not allowed. Al-
Shu’bi, al-Nakha’i and Maalik
regarded that as makrooh [i.e.,
haraam]. Abu Thawr, al-Nu’maan
– Abu Haneefah (may Allaah
have mercy on him) – and
Ya’qoob and Muhammad, two of
the students of Abu Haneefah
said: it is not permissible to pay
anything for singing and wailing.
This is our view. And he said:
musical instruments are the wine
of the soul, and what it does to
the soul is worse than what
intoxicating drinks do. (Majmoo’
al-Fataawa, 10/417).
Ibn Abi Shaybah (may Allaah
have mercy on him) reported that
a man broke a mandolin
belonging to another man, and
the latter took his case to
Shurayh. But Shurayh did not
award him any compensation –
i.e., he did not make the first man
pay the cost of the mandolin,
because it was haraam and had
no value.
(al-Musannaf, 5/395).
Al-Baghawi (may Allaah have
mercy on him) stated in a fatwa
that it is haraam to sell all kinds of
musical instruments such as
mandolins, flutes, etc. Then he
said: If the images are erased and
the musical instruments are
altered, then it is permissible to
sell their parts, whether they are
silver, iron, wood or whatever.
(Sharh al-Sunnah, 8/28)
An appropriate exception
The exception to the above is the
daff – without any rings (i.e., a
hand-drum which looks like a
tambourine, but without any
rattles) – when used by women
on Eids and at weddings. This is
indicated by saheeh reports.
Shaykh al-Islam (may Allaah
have mercy on him) said: But the
Prophet (peace and blessings of
Allaah be upon him) made
allowances for certain types of
musical instruments at weddings
and the like, and he made
allowances for women to play the
daff at weddings and on other
joyful occasions. But the men at
his time did not play the daff or
clap with their hands. It was
narrated in al-Saheeh that he
said: “Clapping is for women and
tasbeeh (saying Subhaan Allaah)
is for men.” And he cursed
women who imitate men and men
who imitate women. Because
singing and playing the daff are
things that women do, the Salaf
used to call any man who did that
a mukhannath (effeminate man),
and they used to call male
singers effeminate – and how
many of them there are
nowadays! It is well known that
the Salaf said this.
In a similar vein is the hadeeth of
‘Aa’ishah (may Allaah be pleased
with her), when her father (may
Allaah be pleased with him)
entered upon her at the time of
Eid, and there were two young
girls with her who were singing
the verses that the Ansaar had
said on the day of Bu’aath – and
any sensible person will know
what people say about war. Abu
Bakr (may Allaah be pleased with
him) said: “Musical instruments of
the Shaytaan in the house of the
Messenger of Allaah (peace and
blessings of Allaah be upon him)!”
The Messenger of Allaah had
turned away from them and was
facing the wall – hence some
scholars said that Abu Bakr (may
Allaah be pleased with him)
would not tell anybody off in front
of the Messenger of Allaah
(peace and blessings of Allaah be
upon him), but he thought that the
Messenger of Allaah (peace and
blessings of Allaah be upon him)
was not paying attention to what
was happening. And Allaah
knows best. He (the Prophet
(peace and blessings of Allaah be
upon him)) said: “Leave them
alone, O Abu Bakr, for every
nation has its Eid, and this is our
Eid, the people of Islam.” This
hadeeth shows that it was not the
habit of the Prophet (peace and
blessings of Allaah be upon him)
and his companions to gather to
listen to singing, hence Abu Bakr
al-Siddeeq called it “the musical
instruments of the Shaytaan”. And
the Prophet (peace and blessings
of Allaah be upon him) approved
of this appellation and did not
deny it when he said, “Leave
them alone, for every nation has
its Eid and this is our Eid.” This
indicates that the reason why this
was permitted was because it
was the time of Eid, and the
prohibition remained in effect at
times other than Eid, apart from
the exceptions made for
weddings in other ahaadeeth.
Shaykh al-Albaani explained this
in his valuable book Tahreem
Aalaat al-Tarab (the Prohibition of
Musical Instruments). The
Prophet (peace and blessings of
Allaah be upon him) approved of
young girls singing at Eid, as
stated in the hadeeth: “So that the
mushrikeen will know that in our
religion there is room for
relaxation.” There is no indication
in the hadeeth about the two
young girls that the Prophet
(peace and blessings of Allaah be
upon him) was listening to them.
The commands and prohibitions
have to do with listening, not
merely hearing, just as in the
case of seeing, the rules have to
do with intentionally looking and
not what happens by accident. So
it is clear that this is for women
only. Imaam Abu ‘Ubayd (may
Allaah have mercy on him)
defined the daff as “that which is
played by women.”
(Ghareeb al-Hadeeth, 3/64).
An inappropriate exception
Some of them make an exception
for drums at times of war, and
consequentially some modern
scholars have said that military
music is allowed. But there is no
basis for this at all, for a number
of reasons, the first of which is
that this is making an exception
with no clear evidence, apart from
mere opinion and thinking that it
is good, and this is wrong. The
second reason is that what the
Muslims should do at times of war
is to turn their hearts towards their
Lord. Allaah says (interpretation
of the meaning):
“They ask you (O Muhammad)
about the spoils of war. Say: ‘The
spoils are for Allaah and the
Messenger.’ So fear Allaah and
adjust all matters of difference
among you…” [al-Anfaal 8:1] . But using music is the opposite
of this idea of taqwa and it would
distract them from remembering
their Lord. Thirdly, using music is
one of the customs of the kuffaar,
and it is not permitted to imitate
them, especially with regard to
something that Allaah has
forbidden to us in general, such
as music. (al-Saheehah, 1/145)
“No people go astray after having
been guided except they
developed arguments amongst
themselves.” (Saheeh)
Some of them used the hadeeth
about the Abyssinians playing in
the mosque of the Prophet (peace
and blessings of Allaah be upon
him) as evidence that singing is
allowed! Al-Bukhaari included this
hadeeth in his Saheeh under the
heading Baab al-Hiraab wa’l-
Daraq Yawm al-‘Eid (Chapter on
Spears and Shields on the Day of
Eid). Al-Nawawi (may Allaah have
mercy on him) said: This indicates
that it is permissible to play with
weapons and the like in the
mosque, and he applied that to
other activities connected with
(Sharh Muslim). But as al-Haafiz
ibn Hajar (may Allaah have mercy
on him) said: whoever speaks
about something which is not his
profession will come up with
weird ideas such as these.
Some of them use as evidence
the hadeeth about the singing of
the two young girls, which we
have discussed above, but we will
quote what Ibn al-Qayyim (may
Allaah have mercy on him) said,
because it is valuable:
I am amazed that you quote as
evidence for allowing listening to
sophisticated songs the report
which we mentioned about how
two young girls who were below
the age of puberty sang to a
young woman on the day of Eid
some verses of Arab poetry about
bravery in war and other noble
characteristics. How can you
compare this to that? What is
strange is that this hadeeth is one
of the strongest proofs against
them. The greatest speaker of the
truth [Abu Bakr al-Siddeeq] called
them musical instruments of the
Shaytaan, and the Messenger of
Allaah (peace and blessings of
Allaah be upon him) approved of
that appellation, but he made an
exception in the case of these two
young girls who had not yet
reached the age of responsibility
and the words of whose songs
could not corrupt anyone who
listened to them. Can this be used
as evidence to allow what you do
and what you know of listening (to
music) which includes (bad)
things which are not hidden?!
Subhaan Allaah! How people can
be led astray!
(Madaarij al-Saalikeen, 1/493).
Ibn al-Jawzi (may Allaah have
mercy on him) said: ‘Aa’ishah
(may Allaah be pleased with her)
was young at that time; nothing
was transmitted from her after she
reached the age of puberty
except condemnation of singing.
Her brother’s son, al-Qaasim ibn
Muhammad, condemned singing
and said that it was not allowed to
listen to it, and he took his
knowledge from her.
(Talbees Iblees, 229). Al-Haafiz
ibn Hajar (may Allaah have mercy
on him) said: A group of the Sufis
used this hadeeth – the hadeeth
about the two young girls – as
evidence that singing is allowed
and it is allowed to listen to it,
whether it is accompanied by
instruments or not. This view is
sufficiently refuted by the clear
statement of ‘Aa’ishah in the
following hadeeth, where she
says, “They were not singers.”
She made it clear that they were
not singers as such, although this
may be understood from the
wording of the report. So we
should limit it to what was
narrated in the text as regards the
occasion and the manner, so as
to reduce the risk of going against
the principle, i.e., the hadeeth.
And Allaah knows best. (Fath al-
Baari, 2/442-443).
Some people even have the
nerve to suggest that the
Sahaabah and Taabi’een listened
to singing, and that they saw
nothing wrong with it!
Al-Fawzaan (may Allaah preserve
him) said: We demand them to
show us saheeh isnaads going
back to these Sahaabah and
Taabi’een, proving what they
attribute to them. Then he said:
Imaam Muslim mentioned in his
introduction to his Saheeh that
‘Abd-Allaah ibn al-Mubaarak said:
The isnaad is part of religion.
Were it not for the isnaad,
whoever wanted to could say
whatever he wanted to.
Some of them said that the
ahaadeeth which forbid music are
full of faults. No hadeeth was free
of being criticized by some of the
scholars. Ibn Baaz (may Allaah
have mercy on him) said: The
ahaadeeth which were narrated
concerning music being haraam
are not full of faults as has been
claimed. Some of them are in
Saheeh al-Bukhaari which is the
soundest of books after the Book
of Allaah, and some of them are
hasan and some are da’eef. But
because they are so many, with
different isnaads, they constitute
definitive proof that singing and
musical instruments are haraam.
All the imaams agreed on the
soundness of the ahaadeeth
which forbid singing and musical
instruments, apart from Abu
Haamid al-Ghazzaali, but al-
Ghazzaali did not have
knowledge of hadeeth; and Ibn
Hazam, but al-Albaani (may
Allaah have mercy on him)
explained where Ibn Hazam went
wrong, and Ibn Hazam himself
said that if any of (these
ahaadeeth) were saheeh, he
would follow that. But now they
have proof that these reports are
saheeh because there are so
many books by the scholars
which state that these ahaadeeth
are saheeh, but they turn their
backs on that. They are far more
extreme than Ibn Hazam and they
are nothing like him, for they are
not qualified and cannot be
referred to.
Some of them said that the
scholars forbade singing because
it is mentioned alongside
gatherings in which alcohol is
drunk and where people stay up
late at night for evil purposes.
Al-Shawkaani (may Allaah have
mercy on him) said: The response
to this is that mentioning these
things in conjunction does not
only mean that what is haraam is
what is joined together in this
manner. Otherwise this would
mean that zinaa, as mentioned in
the ahaadeeth, is not haraam
unless it is accompanied by
alcohol and the use of musical
instruments. By the same token,
an aayah such as the following
(interpretation of the meaning):

Verily, he used not to believe in
Allaah, the Most Great,
And urged not on the feeding of
Al‑Miskeen (the poor).”
[al-Haaqqah 69:33-34] would imply that it is not haraam
to disbelieve in Allaah unless that
is accompanied by not
encouraging the feeding of the
poor. If it is said that the
prohibition of such things one at a
time is proven from other reports,
the response to that is that the
prohibition of musical instruments
is also known from other
evidence, as mentioned above.
(Nayl al-Awtaar, 8/107).
Some of them said that “idle talk”
does not refer to singing; the
refutation of that has been
mentioned above. Al-Qurtubi
(may Allaah have mercy on him)
said: This – the view that it means
singing – is the best that has
been said concerning this aayah,
and Ibn Mas’ood swore three
times by Allaah besides Whom
there is no other god, that it does
refer to singing. Then he
mentioned other imaams who
said the same thing. Then he
mentioned other views
concerning the matter. Then he
said: The first view is the best of
all that has been said on this
matter, because of the marfoo’
hadeeth, and because of the view
of the Sahaabah and the
(Tafseer al-Qurtubi).
Ibn al-Qayyim (may Allaah have
mercy on him), after quoting this
Tafseer, said: Al-Haakim Abu
‘Abd-Allaah said in the Tafseer of
Kitaab al-Mustadrak: Let the one
who is seeking this knowledge
know that the Tafseer of a
Sahaabi who witnessed the
revelation is a hadeeth with
isnaad according to the two
Shaykhs (al-Bukhaari and
Muslim). Elsewhere in his book,
he said: In our view this hadeeth
has the same strength as a
marfoo’ report. Although their
tafseer is still subject to further
examination, it is still more readily
acceptable than the tafseer of
those who came after them,
because they are the most
knowledgeable among this
ummah of what Allaah meant in
his Book. It was revealed among
them and they were the first
people to be addressed by it.
They heard the tafseer from the
Messenger (peace and blessings
of Allaah be upon him) in word
and in deed. And they were Arabs
who understood the true
meanings of (Arabic) words, so
Muslims should avoid resorting to
any other interpretation as much
as possible.
Some of them said that singing is
a form of worship if the intention
is for it to help one to obey Allaah!
Ibn al-Qayyim (may Allaah have
mercy on him) said: How strange!
What type of faith, light, insight,
guidance and knowledge can be
gained from listening to tuneful
verses and music in which most
of what is said is haraam and
deserves the wrath and
punishment of Allaah and His
Messenger? … How can anyone
who has the least amount of
insight and faith in his heart draw
near to Allaah and increase his
faith by enjoying something which
is hated by Him, and He detests
the one who says it and the one
who accepts it?
(Madaarij al-Saalikeen, 1/485)
Shaykh al-Islam said, discussing
the state of the person who has
gotten used to listening to
singing: Hence you find that those
who have gotten used to it and for
whom it is like food and drink will
never have the desire to listen to
the Qur’aan or feel joy when they
hear it, and they never find in
listening to its verses the same
feeling that they find when
listening to poetry. Indeed, if they
hear the Qur’aan, they hear it with
an inattentive heart and talk whilst
it is being recited, but if they hear
whistling and clapping of hands,
they lower their voices and keep
still, and pay attention.
(Majmoo’ al-Fataawa, 11/557 ff)
Some say that music and musical
instruments have the effect of
softening people’s hearts and
creating gentle feelings. This is
not true, because it provokes
physical desires and whims. If it
really did what they say, it would
have softened the hearts of the
musicians and made their attitude
and behaviour better, but most of
them, as we know, are astray and
behave badly.
Perhaps – for fair-minded and
objective readers – this summary
will make it clear that the view
that music is permissible has no
firm basis. There are no two
views on this matter. So we must
advise in the best manner, and
then take it step by step and
denounce music, if we are able to
do so. We should not be deceived
by the fame of a man in our own
times in which the people who are
truly committed to Islam have
become strangers. The one who
says that singing and musical
instruments are permitted is
simply supporting the whims of
people nowadays, as if the
masses were issuing fatwas and
he is simply signing them! If a
matter arises, they will look at the
views of fuqahaa’ on this matter,
then they will take the easiest
view, as they claim. Then they will
look for evidence, or just
specious arguments which are
worth no more than a lump of
dead meat. How often have these
people approved things in the
name of sharee’ah which in fact
have nothing to do with Islam!
Strive to learn your Islam from the
Book of your Lord and the
Sunnah of your Prophet. Do not
say, So-and-so said, for you
cannot learn the truth only from
men. Learn the truth and then
measure people against it. This
should be enough for the one
who controls his whims and
submits himself to his Lord. May
what we have written above heal
the hearts of the believers and
dispel the whispers in the hearts
of those who are stricken with
insinuating whispers. May it
expose everyone who is deviating
from the path of Revelation and
taking the easiest options,
thinking that he has come up with
something which none of the
earlier generations ever
achieved, and speaking about
Allaah without knowledge. They
sought to avoid fisq (evildoing)
and ended up committing bid’ah –
may Allaah not bless them in it. It
would have been better for them
to follow the path of the believers.
And Allaah knows best. May
Allaah bless and grant peace to
His Messenger who made clear
the path of the believers, and to
his companions and those who
follow them in truth until the Day
of Judgement.
Summary of a paper entitled al-
Darb bi’l-Nawa li man abaaha al-
Ma’aazif li’l-Hawa by Shaykh Sa’d
al-Deen ibn Muhammad al-Kibbi.
For more information, please see:
Al-I’laam bi Naqd Kitaab al-Halaal
, by Shaykh al-‘Allaamah Saalih
ibn Fawzaan al-Fawzaan
by Shaykh al-Islam Ibn al-Qayyim
Tahreem Aalaat al-Tarab,
by Shaykh Muhammad Naasir al-
Deen al-Albaani (may Allaah
have mercy on him)
Click Here for Original Link


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