Sunday, June 17, 2007

Haram Police


Here are some snippets of the video I liked the most :


Finally there are those people on the internet who may have good intentions, but they have no qualifications....you know who I'm talking about!

Sometimes there are people on the Internet who think they are scholars, but they're not scholars. Actually they have no qualifications, but they do have access to the internet and a keyboard.

So many times I've seen a question being posed on a forum regarding if something is haram or not only to get one of these young kids to say " In my opinion I think its haram; because I feel ..." . In my opinion I feel! what ! are you kidding me ? Where are all of you self proclaimed internet scholars coming from.

First, of all the rulings of Islam is not based on what you feel is haram or halal.
Second, copying and pasting a hadith translated to English from some unknown website, a hadith no one has heard of before is not enough for you to come up with a ruling.
Finally, one need to be qualified to give a ruling. You don't just walk into a hospital and start practicing medicine ....
.
.
If you want to be a Doctor you go to school first. It's the same thing when it comes to Islamic rulings you have to have knowledge and to be qualified otherwise if you walk into a hospital giving people advice you can actually do more harm then good plus your opinion doesn't count; because your not a doctor. Its the same thing when it comes down to Islam.

17 comments:

a_akak said...

I like this dude as i once in a while go and check his blog

Regarding Haram, the only things govern Haram & Halal are the Quraan and the Sunaa of the prophet and I agree you go to a doctor when you are ill (or you come to me and i will do a full stress analysis on you lol), however, even the normal guy given the correct equipment (i.e. books and sources ) can judge haram or halal but before you take it ask him/her "On what did you base this on?"

Love the clip

Fe Aman Allah

PH said...

loooooooool@stress analysis

"even the normal guy given the correct equipment (i.e. books and sources ) can judge haram or halal"

I think, even with books and sources not everyone can see the difference between Haram/Halal on all matters I mean you can give people books on Engineering and medicine, but even if they study them by themselves they won't be able to use the knowledge properly or confidently, even if they did do something right it would be a mere stroke of luck; because they aren't knowledgeable enough to correct or judge themselves :).
It's like in school you can solve an exam and you might be pretty confident of your answers, but that doesn't mean your right; because you haven't specialized in a certain field yet; so you still lack a lot of knowledge to at least gauge your answer....
It's not just about having books .... books are just a means of conveying a message and personal experiences always dilute the way words are perceived so you really have to be very knowledgeable in both the Quran and Sunnah, smart and be able to detach yourself from worldly temptations before being able to issue even a small fatwa :p ( to say the least I think ).
I mean generally speaking one of the purposes of religion, in my view, is to govern our instincts and emotions ( hate, revenge, lust...) so if one can't keep his love of worldly objects to a minimum he'll have a hard time accepting certain aspects of religion?
There are also many rules that govern Ijtihad and Fiqh the simplest I've heard of would be the notion that when a scholar is studying the Quran and Sunnah to reach a verdict on a certain matter he has to be willing to accept any outcome, i.e., not biased. Unfortunately I've noticed that this isn't observed much and a lot of people will be hasty in issuing Fatwas that may contradict Islam just to make Islam more compatible with Western values, which to me seems more a result of peer pressure than a result of a genuine intention to study and further better the cause of religion.

Even though I would agree with you that those brought up a proper religious upbringing in a conservative environment will feel uneasy about most Haram things, but thats only because as a result of their upbringing they have attained a stricter moral compass .....



salaam bro :)

a_akak said...

But even with scholars, in the end they have to base their finding on some basis and how to locate this basis is what makes them scholars and the in depth view of a situation, however, given a "normal" person has these tools and can back up what he says then i think it can be followed...... saying this i am very critical in regards to people who just blast off "Haram", "Haram" & "Haram" ........ & allah A3lem

Fe aman Allah

Lebeeya said...

إن الحلال بيّن والحرام بيّن ، وبينهما أمور مشتبهات لا يعلمهن كثير من الناس ، فمن اتقى الشبهات فقد استبرأ لدينه وعرضه ، ومن وقع في الشبهات

I personally believe, as the hadeeth states, that the halal is clear and so is the haram (whats stated in the Quran and Sunnah) but ofcourse there is a gray area that needs some major ijtihad. The gray area is what is confusing people cuz we got scholars everywhere with different opinions on a certain matter, all depending on what mathhab (مذهب) they follow, and sometimes two scholars from the same mathhab have different opinions and fatwas on the same issue.

there is Quran, Sunnah, Al-ijma3 (الإجماع) and then Al-Qiyas (القياس)

This is how I see it, if you are not sure what is Halal or Haram, you gotta check the Quran, if its not mentioned there, then the Sunnah, if also not mentioned there, then you gotta check what علماء الأمة gotta say about the issue and if there is an agreed fatwa about it.. ofcourse nowadays, we have different scholars saying different things, so it takes us to the next step which is Al-Qiyas, ya3ni you measure the issue yourself. This stage is where you gotta really look into the matter, read lots of books, read tafseer, try to find a similiar matter in one of the surahs fil quran or a hadeeth. But I doubt most people reach this stage as they tend to follow the scholar of their mathhab, or the fatwa that is more appealing to them or the fatwa that says its "halal" :P (whatever it may be)

However, saying all that.. the hadeeth also advises us to stay away from the 'gray' area to be on the safe side.

Lebeeya said...

I forgot to thank you for sharing the clip with us. Great stuff :)

Thank you.

a_akak said...

Bravo Lebeeya :) totally inline with her

ibeebarbie said...

Salam PH,

The problem as I see it is humans who all have egos and derive their conclusions based on their experiences, teachings and knowledge create convoluted conclusions in defining Halal and Haram. Moreover, there will be those that support these ideas, teachings, thoughts and those that oppose them. Resulting in there always being conflict. Now, if we could just remove the egotistical human behavior from the equation we’d probably have something.

PH said...

Well first off I'd like to say I'm sorry for not replying earlier :). I live on the East cost of North America and Monday was hectic ( meeting ) and so was Tuesday so sorry again :).

@Leebeya :

Where have you been hiding all this intellect :) If I knew you were going to post such an elaborative comment I wouldn't have commented to a_akak :p. You can say I nearly totally agree with you except maybe some minor details.

"This is how I see it, if you are not sure what is Halal or Haram, you gotta check the Quran, if its not mentioned there, then the Sunnah, if also not mentioned there, then you gotta check what علماء الأمة gotta say about the issue and if there is an agreed fatwa about it.."

As for this part there is a Hadith that supports it, I tried to look for it all night, but couldn't remember were I read it *sigh* . Here is a post I read a while back which is more elaborative of my opinion I agree with his direction of thought and conclusion, even though I haven't checked the validity of the ahadeeth he is using...so I can't vouch for them :).

"I forgot to thank you for sharing the clip with us. Great stuff :)"

Your welcome Lebeeya and thanks again for your insightful comment we need more of them.......maybe I should provoke your thoughts to ge them out of you :p.

PH said...

@a_akak :

:D

@ibeebarbie :

OK I'm going to start from scratch so we can get to the bottom of this :p..... your talk of ego is beginning to sound like Stephen Colbert talking about bears :p.

"The problem as I see it is humans who all have egos and derive their conclusions based on their experiences, teachings and knowledge create convoluted conclusions in defining Halal and Haram."

To an extent I would say I agree with you except all I'll say is that people who have ego's aren't the only problem and here I'm referring to the general understanding of ego ( confidence/self-satisfaction ). My problem is that not all people who are confident of their opinions are essentially so because of their ego, some do study extensively and their confidence may only be perceived as such by those less knowledgeable than them, while in actual fact they are being modest in comparison to the knowledge they have acquired ........

As for experience, teaching and knowledge aren't they the tools we are supposed to use to gauge the validity of our decisions were they to be related to religion or otherwise?

Now to Haram and Halal from what I have read about Ijtihad not everything is up for debate and only things that are new to our time/generation are considered debatable and open to Ijtihad. These new situations or innovations that require Ijtihad aren't fundamental to our faith as faith I don't think disagreement on them would make a difference between muslims as long as the muslims stick to the agreed upon basic, I think, any differences among them will be minute .....:)

From what I've observed the problem with Muslims today isn't what is Haram and Halal its rather observing the basics of religion that are agreed on; that, I think, would ultimately lead us to a better understanding of the grey areas Lebeeya mentioned.

salaam

Safia speaks said...

Once I ended up in a weird discussion with some Moroccan women; they claimed themselves "sheikha" telling everybody about haram and halal all the time, despite never having gone to school past grade seven.

This woman had the nerve to tell me: "In islam it is haram for a man to marry a woman older tham himself!"

I laughed at her, asking her: "What about sittna Khadija? She married our beloved prophet when she was 40 and he was 25?!"

She replied: "That´s different, because he was the nabee."

Even worse are the discussions with different followers of madhabs. "You can´t eat shellfish and octopus and shrimp because it is haram!"

"No, it isn´t for me. I follow maliki madhab. Everything from the sea is halal."

"Maliki madhab is wrong!"

Sometimes we Muslims are our worst enemies.

PH said...

@safia :
looooooooooooooool
I nearly suffocated in my drink reading it ... loooooooooool

"In islam it is haram for a man to marry a woman older tham himself!"

I know a lot of women would be very angry to hear that :p.

"You can´t eat shellfish and octopus and shrimp because it is haram!"

Yeah, I remember reading you say that before, I think it was on Anglo's blog ? I wondered what the basis for that tahrim is and in which mathhab?I even asked some Saudi's if it was Haram in the hanbali Mathhab and they said no ? I've had my fare share of octopuses and shrimp don't want to stop now :p

Romana said...

THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR THIS POST PH! I'm so glad that u r one of the few who understand the meaning of Haram and Halal... and that not everyone is entitled to be heard!!!

It's not a story u were asked to read and give your opinion about, or a poem and asked to analyze, its a religion, and as written in ur post... u need to study to become a scholar...

thanks again, i really enjoyed it...

mani said...

hmmmmm.... interesting.. ;)

you know my view :P

Salam

PH said...

@Romana :

First welcome to my blog I think this is your first comment here right?

"THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR THIS POST PH!"

Your welcome sis ;) I'm glad you liked it so much .....

"it's not a story u were asked to read and give your opinion about, or a poem and asked to analyze, its a religion, and as written in ur post... u need to study to become a scholar..."

Exactly my take on it I mean as I see it, it's very hard to specializes in more than one field ( not impossible ) and I don't know why some deem religion less important than any other science ..... I mean I don't study all fields of medicine and engineering and other sciences to get along in my life I rely on others for their knowledge and expertise . I don't blindly take their advice, but I know the limits of my knowledge so I don't wander into grey areas by myself...........

@Mani :

Welcome bro long time no see thanks for passing by and leaving a comment :) I hope everything is ok with you back home ?

"hmmmmm.... interesting.. ;)"

Your itching to comment, eh?

"you know my view :P"

do I ? :p .......... anyway if you do what you said you were going to do I think you would end up being a scholar :), so I don't think we're that far apart in opinion :)

salaam both of you and take care

ibeebarbie said...

Salam PH,

your talk of ego is beginning to sound like Stephen Colbert talking about bears :p.

I see I have another book to read………LOL

Oh, how I wish Mani was ‘settled in’ to pipe in on this topic because this is one right up his alley. :-P

I know my father and I’ve had this conversation recently and from his perspective he understands ego to mean “egotistical, self-centered, ego maniac, self-absorbed” all looked upon in a negative fashion, which if out of whack is true. However, I think he was looking at the word ‘ego’ as an extreme case that not everyone is ego minded. I had to disagree and share my thoughts of all of us having an ego, but explained it’s what we do with that ego that affects either positive or negative. I gave the only example that could come to my head at the time as following:

Dad, lets say you and I are in a room together with other people and you looked at me. When you looked at me, it appeared that I was looking right at you with a squinted up face (eyes squinted, brow curved inward, cheeks pinched tight, lips in a frowned position), and your first thought upon observing this was, “What the heck? What did I do?” I said this is your ego piping up because it’s assuming the look on my face has something to do with you rather than maybe I just had something fly in eye and hadn’t put my hand up to my eye to get it out. Certainly not the best example, but again the only one that came to mind, and dad said that seemed to make more sense to him.

I do agree with you though on not being able to know all things at all times as that would be an impossible task, and therefore seeking the advice of others that are masters on the subject. On the other hand as you’ve pointed out we also need to use are own brains to determine these answers by weighing and measuring the information gathered. Certainly the teachings of religion and guidelines for following the word of God are without a doubt extremely important, but what about having a connection with God? I would hate to think that God is considered (figuratively speaking, of course) a big ogre that’s perched high on a chair just waiting to cast judgment and fire on his subjects for not following the humanly interpreted teachings of His book.

PH said...

@ ibeebarbie :

Well first sorry for taking so long to reply :), I got side tracked with all the discussions on the sidebars ( chatboxes ) and I'm trying to answer to your comment without diluting my reply with our side discussions :P, so I actually reduced the original reply a lot :p.

"your talk of ego is beginning to sound like Stephen Colbert talking about bears :p"

It's a TV show :D.

"I know my father and I’ve had this conversation recently and from his perspective he understands ego to mean “egotistical, self-centered, ego maniac, self-absorbed” all looked upon in a negative fashion, which if out of whack is true. However, I think he was looking at the word ‘ego’ as an extreme case that not everyone is ego minded. I had to disagree and share my thoughts of all of us having an ego, but explained it’s what we do with that ego that affects either positive or negative."

My general understanding used to be similar to your fathers :), but after seeing how much you hated ego and the amount of wrong you attributed to it I thought it would be wise to do some background check before replying :p.

Well it turns out there are two different meanings to ego the understanding your father referenced, being the general layman's understanding ( my previous understanding ). The latter being the psychological notion of ego first described by Sigmund Freud.
If we are talking about the first meaning of ego ( the layman's understanding of it ), it is obviously only bad, but I don't think that all bad things or virtues can be attributed only to it and I don't think that it has any good aspects to it :).

As for the second meaning of ego which I believe is closer to your understanding of it, given that you think it isn't necessarily bad, then based on its definition and my understanding of the definition one's ego would certainly reflect his personality faults and be indicative of it, but I don't think it would be the reason for his faults or faulty actions, thats were I disagree with you. Ego isn't the reason it's the end result its the interface one chooses to use when interacting with others, but one has different reasons for showing different aspects of his personality ? One's personality develops from childhood to a certain age like his body does then it just stops and his ego becomes relatively fixed even if he identifies his faults he will find it very hard to control them (faults) and they will come to surface at times of anger or weakness, so to find the reasons behind ones faults you have to dig deeper; thats why I believe psychologists have sessions to hear the patient out and listen to their childhood memories; thats were it all begins :p.
I remember you mentioned that Hypocrisy and Lies are driven by ego, even though that maybe true to some extent I don't think it applies to all cases as their are cases in which there are genuine reasons for fear ( life threating ) that would lead some one to lie and I don't think those cases are ego driven :) there are many more examples of bad virtues that are non-egotistical with regards to the second definition of ego, but it depends on what you mean by ego? I think our disagreement may be only with regards to semantics ?

"On the other hand as you’ve pointed out we also need to use are own brains to determine these answers by weighing and measuring the information gathered"

Yes, I agree, one can use his brain to reach decisions for himself and his own judgment; but not to issue Fatwas or decide what is Haram and Halal he can chooses between different teachings ( schools of thought ) that have credibility and are generally accepted ( ijma3 ), but if he isn't a scholar he can't come up with his own interpretations or verdicts thats what the link I posted in reply to Lebeeya, I believe, insinuated.

The only reason a non-scholar would go around freely and loosely interpreting the Quran or Hadith or discrediting them would be because of his ego :P.

salaam

ibeebarbie said...

Salam PH,

Ahhhhh, I see there is another remarkable Muse (PH) to add to the repertoire of other great debaters and philosophers. ;-)

Well contended my friend. I think we agree more than not, and believe we may perceive the semantics from different directions, but the directions all seem to lead to the same place.