The fataawa of the Imaams of the Sunnah regarding the CORRECT position on TV, photography and videos

بِسْمِ اللَّهِ الرَّحْمَنِ الرَّحِيمِ

(In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful, Ever Merciful to His believing Slaves)

 

The fataawa of the Imaams of the Sunnah regarding the CORRECT position on TV, photography and videos

Allah, the Might and Wise, says:

 يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آَمَنُوا إِنْ تَتَّقُوا اللَّهَ يَجْعَلْ لَكُمْ فُرْقَانًا وَيُكَفِّرْ عَنْكُمْ سَيِّئَاتِكُمْ وَيَغْفِرْ لَكُمْ وَاللَّهُ ذُو الْفَضْلِ الْعَظِيمِ (سورة الأنفال:29)

Translation:

O you who believe! If you obey and fear Allâh, He will grant you Furqân [a criterion to judge between right and wrong, or Makhraj, i.e. making a way for you to get out from every difficulty)], and will expiate for you your sins, and forgive you, and Allâh is the Owner of the Great Bounty.

And Allah the Most Gracious says:

 

وَمَا كَانَ لِمُؤْمِنٍ وَلَا مُؤْمِنَةٍ إِذَا قَضَى اللَّهُ وَرَسُولُهُ أَمْرًا أَنْ يَكُونَ لَهُمُ الْخِيَرَةُ مِنْ أَمْرِهِمْ وَمَنْ يَعْصِ اللَّهَ وَرَسُولَهُ فَقَدْ ضَلَّ ضَلَالًا مُبِينًا (سورة الأحزاب:36)

Translation:

It is not for a believer, man or woman, when Allâh and His Messenger have decreed a matter that they should have any option in their decision. And whoever disobeys Allâh and His Messenger, he has indeed strayed in a plain error.

 

Allah, the All Knowing, Says:

فَلَا وَرَبِّكَ لَا يُؤْمِنُونَ حَتَّى يُحَكِّمُوكَ فِيمَا شَجَرَ بَيْنَهُمْ ثُمَّ لَا يَجِدُوا فِي أَنْفُسِهِمْ حَرَجًا مِمَّا قَضَيْتَ وَيُسَلِّمُوا تَسْلِيمًا (سورة النساء: 65)

Translation:

But no, by your Lord, they can have no Faith, until they make you (O Muhammad) judge in all disputes between them, and find in themselves no resistance against your decisions, and accept (them) with full submission.

Allah, the Most High, says:

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آَمَنُوا أَطِيعُوا اللَّهَ وَأَطِيعُوا الرَّسُولَ وَأُولِي الْأَمْرِ مِنْكُمْ فَإِنْ تَنَازَعْتُمْ فِي شَيْءٍ فَرُدُّوهُ إِلَى اللَّهِ وَالرَّسُولِ إِنْ كُنْتُمْ تُؤْمِنُونَ بِاللَّهِ وَالْيَوْمِ الْآَخِرِ ذَلِكَ خَيْرٌ وَأَحْسَنُ تَأْوِيلًا (سورة النساء:59)

Translation:

O you who believe! Obey Allâh and obey the Messenger (Muhammad), and those of you (Muslims) who are in authority. (And) if you differ in anything amongst yourselves, refer it to Allâh and His Messenger, if you believe in Allâh and in the Last Day. That is better and more suitable for final determination.

 

 

 

Fataawa of the Imaam of the pious and the seal of the Messengers, Muhammad (Sal Allahu alaiyhi wa sallam):

 

Imaam Bukhari says in his Saheeh (Hadeeth No. 5494): Narrated Al Humaidi, narrated Sufyan, narrated Al ‘Amash, on the authority of Muslim who said: we were with Masrooq in the house of Yasaar ibn Numair and he saw on his cabinet, pictures. So he said: I heard Abdullah (ibn Masoud) say: I heard the Prophet (Sal Allahu aliyhi wa sallam) say, “Verily the people with the worst punishment on the Day of resurrection are the picture makers.”

Imaam Bukhari says in his Saheeh (Hadeeth No. 5505): Narrated Muhammad ibn Al Muthana, narrated Ghundur, narrated Shu’bah on the authority of Awn ibn Abi Juhaifah on the authority of his father: that he bought a slave who cups so he said: the Messenger of Allah (Sal Allahu alaiyhi wa sallam) prohibited: “the price of blood, the price of a dog, the earnings of a prostitute and he (sal Allahu alaiyhi wa sallam) cursed :- the one who gives and takes interest, the one who tatoos others, the one who asks to be tatooed and the picture maker”.

Imaam Muslim says in his Saheeh (Hadeeth No. 1609): Narrated Yahya ibn Yahya and Abu Bakr ibn Abi Shaibah and Zuhair ibn Harb: Narrated Wakee on the authority of Sufyan on the authority of Habib ibn Abi Thabit on the authority of Abi Wa’il on the authority of Abi Wail on the the authority of Abil Hayyaaj who said: Ali ibn Abi Taalib said to me: “Should I not send you on the same mission that the Messenger of Allah (sal Allahu alaiyhi wa sallam) sent me? (He sent me) to not leave a statue except to deface it, nor an elevated grave except to level it.” And Abu Bakr ibn Jallaad al Baahili narrated, Yahya Al Qattan narrated, Sufyan narrated, Habib narrated with this chain and said: “and nor a picture except to deface it.

 

 

Shaikh Muhammad Ameen Ash-Shanqeeti (rahimahullah) said in his explanation of the statement of Allah {And purify my house for the people making tawaaf (circumambulation), and their standing, bowing and prostrating (in prayer)} (Al Hajj:26):

And without a doubt, the entering of photographers into the the Holy Masjid and around the house of Allah with cameras and their taking pictures of the people making tawaaf (circumambulation), and their standing, bowing and prostrating (in prayer): (All of) that is in opposition to what Allah Allah has ordered from cleansing his house for the people making tawaaf, and their standing, bowing and prostrating (in prayer). So desecrating the holiness of Allah’s House by taking pictures in it is not permissible. Because taking pictures of people is prohibited as is proved by authentic ahadeeth and the apparent meaning of the ahadeeth includes ALL types of pictures.

Refer to the book: “Adwa Al Bayaan” the Tafseer of Shaikh Ash-Shanqeeti Surah Al Hajj: 26

Shaikh Muhammad ibn Ibraheem Aal Ash-Shaikh (rahimahullah), the former Mufti of Saudi Arabia, was asked about instructional videos for helping government workers do their work correctly:

“I do not see anything in this matter except prohibition. Because it involves pictures – although the duration is short and then it ends – but it involves displaying of motion pictures in general… and we do not see that the matter has reached the level of daroorah (dire necessity) that permits the prohibited like the permissibility of eating maitah (dead meat) for the one who has no other choice.”

Refer to the book: “The knowledge based refutation of Abu Ishaaq Al Huwaini” – 24

Shaikh Al-Albaani (rahimahullah) said:

Where is the daroorah that is being called for in your question that necessitates the speaker or teacher or faqeeh or muhaddith himself being visible? I do not disagree that the visibility of a person with his voice and his picture has a greater effect on the people; but it is not from the angle of daroorah [that is being called for]. It is in fact from the angle of kamaaliyyaat (i.e. those things that complete)… So is this from the excuses for undertaking that which is originally prohibited? The answer is NO. Therefore it is sufficient to use the radio.

Refer to the book: “The knowledge based refutation of Abu Ishaaq Al Huwaini” – 24

And the Shaikh (rahimahullah) also was asked “What is the ruling on pictures and conferences by television?” :

He replied, “It is not permissible to use pictures no matter how varied the type of picture taking is: whether it is by hand or by camera or by video – for verily all of that is impermissible. As for the current ‘expanded view’ that we see in our times (regarding this matter), meaning if a person wants to stage a lecture then he appears on television, where is the daroorah? If the purpose is teaching, then that occurs simply by the people listening to the speech of the speaker and that is sufficient in fulifilling the beneficial objectives of the Shar’iah (Islamic legislation).

Refer to the book: “The knowledge based refutation of Abu Ishaaq Al Huwaini” – 24

 

 

Shaikh ibn Baaz (rahimahullah) said:

It is not permissible to picture people whether with their consent or without their consent; and if it is with their consent then the sin is greater. And pictures with souls in them are prohibited, because the Messenger of Allah (Sal Allahu aliyhi wa sallam) cursed the picture makers.

Refer: “Fataawa Noor ala Darb” (Aqeedah) No.318

 

 

And the Shaikh (rahimahullah) also said:

The television is a dangerous instrument. And its evils are great like cinema or even worse. And we have come to know from articles written on the subject by those who are well aware of these matters from the Arab lands and other than it, what proves its great danger and evil effect on aqeedah, manners and the condition of the people in general.

 

 

And Shaikh Muqbil (rahimahullah) said whilst explaining that pictures are prohibited:

 

“Whether it is television or live broadcasting cameras in stadiums or university halls or in the women’s section of police stations or every type of security camera” – (all these are prohibited).

Refer to the book: “The ruling on pictures that have souls in them” by Shaikh Muqbil (P.28)

And the Shaikh (rahimahullah) also said:

“And the opinion regarding permissibility of pictures for teaching has no proof for it!”

Refer to the book: “The ruling on pictures that have souls in them” by Shaikh Muqbil (P.28)

And the Shaikh (rahimahullah) was asked:

“What is the criteria for scholars to appear on television? Or is it unrestrictedly impermissible?”

The Shaikh answered: “Is it possible for a person to say whatever he wishes to say on television or if you say speech that opposes the desires of politicians, then it would not be broadcasted nor spread? So the issue is not regarding the preferred opinion as television contains pictures and the Prophet (Sal Allahu aliyhi wa sallam) says: “Angels do not enter a house in which there is a dog or a picture.”

Television has in it the looking at women and women looking at men. And the Prophet (Sal Allahu aliyhi wa sallam) says: “It has been written for the son of Adam his share of fornication which he will commit which will reach him without fail. So the fornication of the eyes is its looking (at impermissible things), and the fornication of the ears is its hearing (of impermissible things), and the fornication of the tongue is (impermissible) speech and the fornication of the hand is its striking and the leg’s fornication is the footstep and the heart leans towards and desires (fornication) and the private parts verify or falsify that.”

And the barakah (blessing) is from Allah – and how much it is that Allah benefits the worshippers and the land, by a brief statement said in a small sitting. And it does not stop being spreads until it reaches America, Britain and other than it. And how many a statement is repeated and announced repeatedly and in the end it becomes like (a silent fart in the souq) – it does not have any fruits and no one benefits from it. So we are ordered with steadfastness and not to undertake sins for the sake of rectification of others. {Let there arise out of you a group of people inviting to all that is good (Islâm), enjoining Al-Ma’rûf (i.e. Islâmic Monotheism and all that Islâm orders one to do) and forbidding Al-Munkar (polytheism and disbelief and all that Islâm has forbidden). And it is they who are the successful.  (Aali Imran 3:104)}

So why do they not go on the radio and speak that which they wish to speak on television? And I feel sorry for some scholars who flow with the masses and run behind them. So the halaal (permissible) is what the masses have made permissible and the haraam (prohibited) is what the masses make haraam. So it is obligatory upon the scholars to not leave knowledge for ignorance and not to leave the sunnah for innovation.

Refer to the book: “Al Ibraaz” 34-35

Shaikh ibn Uthaymin (rahimahullah) said regarding satellite dishes:

 

“It is not permissible to benefit from them, nor advertise them, nor buy, nor sell them because this is from having co-operation upon sin and transgression.”

Refer to the book: “Fataawa of the scholars of the haram” No.1740

Also the Shaikh (rahimahullah) said regarding the statement “There is goodness in television” and this was his LAST position before he died:

 

As for their statement ‘there is goodness in television’ – then yes there is goodness and there is evil in it. But in our times, the evil in it is greater than the good in it. And it is not necessary for the sensible person to bring it to his house not even for the news. Because if he posesses it in his house then he will not restrict it to the news alone as by necessity there will appear on it news and other than the news. So my advice to my brothers is to leave off posession of television completely no matter what it is (i.e. all types of television)

 

Refer: “Al Ibraaz” P.30

 

 

The former Mufti of Jeezan, the eminent Scholar Shaikh Ahmed ibn Yahya An-Najmi was asked:

 

“What is your opinion regarding the appearance of Duaat on television and on satellite channels?”

The Shaikh replied: “This has become in our times from the matters… meaning it is said that it is from the necessities of the times. But look at this caller and to what he is calling to… As for his appearing on screen, this is without a doubt, evil…. but this might be a lesser evil than what he is calling to!”

Refer to the book: “Al Ibraaz” P. 31

 

 

The Permanent Committee gave the following fatwa regarding video photography:

 

“The ruling on video photography is the same ruling as camera photography in impermissibility and prohibition because the general evidences (apply to them both).”

 

Refer Fatwa No. 16359

 

 

The Permanent Committee gave the following fatwa regarding cartoons:

“It is not permissible to buy nor sell cartoon films because of what it includes of pictures which are prohibited.”

Refer Fatwa No. 19933

Shaikh Yahya ibn Ali Al Hajooree (hafidahullah) was asked regarding the ruling regarding entering television into the house with the argument of watching wars, news and religious programmes:

 

“Television has in it pictures with souls; and angels do not enter a house in which there is a dog or a picture. And television causes spoiling of the natural disposition of children. And the Prophet (Sal Allahu aliyhi wa sallam) said: “Each one of you is a shepherd and responsible for his flock”. It causes the spreading of fasaad (evil, fornication etc.) and the looking of women at men and the looking of men at women and Allah says: {Tell the believing men to lower their gaze (from looking at forbidden things), and protect their private parts (from illegal sexual acts, etc.). That is purer for them. Verily, Allâh is All-Aware of what they do.  (An-Nur 24:30)}

Television causes looseing of moral character whereas the Prophet (Sal Allahu aliyhi wa sallam) said: “The heaviest thing on the scales (on the day of judgement) is good character.”

Through television and satellite dishes dancing, homosexuality, loosening of moral character, thievery, lying and fornication are spread. And it causes wastage of time.

So a few of these evils are sufficient to prohibit the entering of television into houses and buying and selling of them.

Refer: The Priceless Treasures from the fataawa of the Trustworthy Advisor Vol 4. / 382

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