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Wednesday, June 11, 2008


I found some arguments which support that music is allowed in Islam.


Argument #1:

The only scholar that ever said music was permissible is Sheikh Yusuf Qardawi:


There were many scholars in the past that said that music was permissible:

Shawkawni, Ibn Hazm, Ghazalli, Abú Bakr al-'Arabi, Qaradawi, and others.

My argument:

We cant just say that because a scholar declared something haram or halal, it is correct. He can make a mistake. Therefore we should look at the reasons due to which he has acted in that way.

Argument #2:

Volume 7, Book 69, Number 494v:

Narrated Abu 'Amir or Abu Malik Al-Ash'ari that he heard the Prophet saying, "From among my followers there will be some people who will consider illegal sexual intercourse, the wearing of silk, the drinking of alcoholic drinks and the use of musical instruments, as lawful. And there will be some people who will stay near the side of a mountain and in the evening their shepherd will come to them with their sheep and ask them for something, but they will say to him, 'Return to us tomorrow.' Allah will destroy them during the night and will let the mountain fall on them, and He will transform the rest of them into monkeys and pigs and they will remain so till the Day of Resurrection."


There is a general rule in Shariah that states that everything is lawful unless proven unlawful. There is not substantial proof in this hadîths because of the following reasons:

Sheikh Muhammad Al-Hanuti stated: "The Hadith referred to in saying that it is haram as narrated by al Bukhari is not fulfilling the requirements of the Sahih in al Bukhari's collection. 1) Al Bukhari in Hadith al Ma'azif himself narrated the Hadith to be of a broken chain of narrators in which there is a gap between al Bukhari and the second narrator, so he drops the first narrator in his chain. That is called Mu'allaq. Some scholars tried to connect the chain through other means like whan ibn Hajar did in his dissertation (connecting what is disconnected) in which he connected the Isnad of this Hadith. But still, one of the main narrators whose name is Hisham ibn Ammar as profiled in Tahthib at-Tahthib by ibn Hajar is not reliable enough for some scholars to be a source of a narration that depends on somebody like him. 2) Even when we said the Hadith is Sahih, there are questions that would emerge when we study the version of the Hadith when it says, "People will make adultery, pure silk, liquor and Ma'azif into Halal." We know that adultery is Haram by another proof and it is a unanimous Hukum. Pure silk is not of consensus Hukum. If a Muslim says Zina is Halal deliberately, then they are considered a kafir. However, if a Muslim says pure silk is not Haram, he is not a kafir. We know that liquor is Haram as it is in the Qur'an, but where do we find an authentic hadith or Qur'an to tell us that Ma'azif are Haram other than this source. The last point is to get the clear meaning of Ma'azif in arabic dictionaries because there are more than one meaning for Ma'azif. It is acceptable for a Muslim to hear somebody says Makruh but not Haram because Haram is in need of clear-cut meaning and certain narration."

My argument:

Firstly, the refernce for the hadith is incorrect. The original hadith number is 494B. Secondly, even though the above response states that the hadith is mu'allaq, still Muhammad bin Ismail Al-Bukhari must have found something about it that he included it in his own collection. His collection is considered to be the most authentic one so this hadith must have been authentic.

Argument #3: Some Muslims state the following about this hadith:

"The Prophet compared musical instruments to things that are definitely known to be haraam, namely zina and alcohol. If instruments were not haraam, he would not have made this comparison. The evidence of this hadeeth that singing is haram is definitive. Even if no other hadeeth or aayah spoke about musical instruments, this hadeeth would be sufficient to prove that they are haraam, especially the kind of singing and music that is known among people nowadays, the essence of which is obscenity and foul talk, based on all kinds of musical instruments such as guitars, drums, flutes, ouds, zithers, organs, pianos, violins and other things that make it more enticing, such as the voices of these effeminate singers and whores." (Article found on the internet).

Response to this argument:

However, these same people state that singing and the use of daff during weddings is ok because of the following hadîth in Bukhari

Volume 7, Book 69, Number 494v:

The Two Festivals (Eids) - Narrated Aisha: Abu Bakr came to my house while two small Ansari girls were singing beside me the stories of the Ansar concerning the Day of Buath. And they were not singers. Abu Bakr said protestingly, "Musical instruments of Satan in the house of Allah's Apostle !" It happened on the 'Id day and Allah's Apostle said, "O Abu Bakr! There is an 'Id for every nation and this is our 'Id."

There is no forbidden action that is permitted merely for pleasure and enjoyment only at certain times. The hadîth that is quoted above mentions things that are definitely known to be haraam, namely zina and alcohol. Even silk which the Prophet wore himself for a short period before violently taking it off (see hadîths Volume 1, Book 8, Number 372) the prophet did not allow it on the Eids:

Bukhari Volume 4, Book 52, Number 289: Fighting for the Cause of Allah (Jihaad) - Narrated Ibn 'Umar - 'Umar saw a silken cloak being sold in the market and he brought it toAllah's Apostle and said, "O Allah's Apostle! Buy this cloak and adorn yourself with it on the 'Id festivals and on meeting the delegations." Allah's Apostle replied, "This is the dress for the one who will have no share in the Hereafter (or, this is worn by one who will have no share in the Hereafter)."

From this argument we should understand the hadîth meaning that being involved in wearing silk, fornication, wine drinking and musical instruments is haram. We can see that there are many Muslims today who are involved in all four of these aspects at once.

Imam Ghazali said in Ihya Ulum Al-Din--The Revival Of The Religious Sciences: "The musical instruments and songs which are typically associated with drunkards are prohibited as they remind of prohibited things and promote the prohibited, such as the consumption of wine and other intoxicants. These prohibited instruments include the Majamir, the Autar and the Kubah, but not the Daf, the flute and other musical instruments."

My argument:

There could always be a first time. Anyways, in my opinion, music is not as bad as many of the other sins. That could be a reason for allowing it on festivals.

Argument #4:

All of the schools of thought including Maliki, Shafii, Hanbali and Hanafi say that music is Haram


Sheikh Muhammad Al-Hanuti stated:

"The majority of schools say music is haram, but there are some other reliable schools that say it is halal."

We must look at the evidence provided by all scholars and then take into consideration what the music is being used for. In this age, the music industry is powerful and it leads astray many youth who are addicted to this music. As Muslims we must provide Islamic alternatives for them in order to guide them back to Islam.

My argument:

Well. I'm sure that most of us would be following the four schools of thought given above so according to our school of thought it is haram.

Argument #5:

All other Ahadeeh recorded refer to musical instruments negatively.


In Bukhari, another hadith relates a connection between musical instruments and the family of David (saw). This is evidence that, indeed, the Psalms were musical in nature:

Bukhari Volume 6, Book 61, Number 568:
"Narrated Abu Musa that the Prophet said to him' "O Abu Musa! You have been given one of the musical wind-instruments of the family of David.'"

The following hadith relates of how the adhan (call to prayer) came to be, and how the Prophet's companions suggested the use of musical instruments such as the horn or bell like the People of the Book. Now although the Prophet ultimately approved the use of the human voice, there is no mention that the Prophet chastised his companions for suggesting musical instruments for the adhan. And if the Prophet was so very much against musical instruments, then why would his companions dare to suggest the use of such sinful things in the call to prayer?

From Muslim Book 004, Number 0735:
Ibn Umar reported: When the Muslims came to Medina, they gathered and sought to know the time of prayer but no one summoned them. One day they discussed the matter, and some of them said: Use something like the bell of the Christians and some of them said: Use horn like that of the Jews. Umar said: Why may not a be appointed who should call (people) to prayer? The Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) said: O Bilal, get up and summon (the people) to prayer.

My argument:

We all know that the once the Prophet ( S ), on hearing a flute, stuck his fingers in his ear to stop himself from hearing it. Secondly, the ahadith mentioned above might have been said before music was made haram.


Read it carefully and judge yourself. Do not start listening to music saying that there are arguments supporting that music is haram. Listen to it only if you are satisfied by the arguments.

You can download two lectures by a scholar named Sulaiman Moola from the following links:

I've even attached a pdf document containing the ruling of music according to the four schools of legal thought. You can open it using Foxit Reader, Adobe Reader or any other pdf reader.

By the way, here's another view to those bands who are using music to spread Islam but it is only applicable if you consider music to be haram. It's just like doing bad to achieve good. Many people would consider it a right way as the result is good but I'll give you an example. Consider there is a boy who wants to please his parents. He decides that he needs to get a good grade in his exams to do that so he cheats from others and gets one of the highest grade in his class. Would you consider that right. Similar is the case with spreading Islam using music.

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