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The Importance of Eating Permissible and Wholesome Foods Part 3

“Muslims can eat the regular meat found in most American Supermarkets or Restaurants” By Imam Na’eem Abdullah


5 The Importance of Eating Permissible and Wholesome Foods

“Muslims can eat the regular meat found in most American supermarkets or restaurants”

Part Three By Na’eem Abdullah www.nuruzzamaaninstitute.org www.lightoftheage.com nuruzzamaan.blogspot.com

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In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful. May Allah bless our master (sayyidina) Muhammad, his family and companions and give them peace. All Praises are due to Allah, He is sufficient (for us). Peace be upon His slaves, who He has chosen. As to what follows: There are several problems with this statement. Let us begin by establishing the fact that for an animal’s meat to be considered lawful for consumption, its slaughter must meet three general conditions. Mufti Muhammad Taqi Usmani has stated, “The legal requirements of a complete slaughter, as mentioned by the jurists, can be broken into, three basic parts: (1) the method of killing the animal, (2) mentioning the name of Allah when slaughtering, and (3) the religious status of the slaughterer.”1 As for the method of killing the animal, Mufti Usmani continues, “Causing the Blood to Flow out: The killing method that Islamic law considers satisfactory for a proper and lawful slaughter differs for different types of animals. In the case of an animal that is not under one’s physical control, either because it is wild or because it has strayed from other domesticated animals, it is sufficient to wound it with any sharp tool that causes its blood to flow out until it dies. This type of slaughter is called “forced slaughter” (dhakaat idtiraariyyah): one cannot gain control of an animal to slaughter it by hand and is therefore “forced” to kill it from a distance. It is not necessary that such an animal be slaughtered by the methods of dhabh or nahr. Forced slaughter is prescribed in the case of


hunting. This article however, is not concerned with explaining the laws of this type of slaughter, but focuses instead on the type called “voluntary slaughter” (dhakaat ikhtiyaariyyah). Voluntary slaughter refers to when an animal is under one’s physical control, be it a domesticated animal or a captured wild animal. In this case, it is obligatory to cause its blood to flow out by the conventional method of cutting into its jugular veins. The support for this is in the following four hadiths: (1) Rafi ibn Khadij narrates in a long hadith that his grandfather asked the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, “May we slaughter using a cane?” The Messenger of Allah replied:

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[As long as you use] whatever causes the blood to flow out and the name of Allah has been mentioned [before slaughtering], you may eat [the animal]. (Sahih al-Bukhari) The question is about dhabh, and dhabh consists of cutting into the jugular veins, as Imam Bukhari reports from ‘Ata ibn Abi Rabah (Sahih al-Bukhari).” The question and answer in this hadith together demonstrate that a lawful slaughtering occurs by cutting into the jugular veins such that the blood flows out. (2) It is reported that Ibn ‘Abbaas and Abu Hurayrah said:

The Messenger of Allah prohibited us from the sharita of Satan – that which is slaughtered, then skinned, and then left to die without its jugular veins having been slit. (Sunan Abi Dawud) Ibn al-Athir, a hadith scholar, historian and lexicographer of the sixth and seventh centuries AH, states: A sharita is a she-camel, and the like, whose neck is slightly slit – like the slit made by one who does blood cupping. Its jugular veins are not cut, nor is its blood made to completely flow out. This was the practice of the people before Islam, that is, during the Days of Ignorance. They would make a slight cut in the animal’s neck, and that to them would be sufficient for


slaughtering. They attributed this to Satan, as if he made them do it (Jami’ al-Usul 4:482) (3) ‘Adi ibn Hatim at-Ta’i relates: I asked, “O Messenger of Allah, if one of us gets hold of some game [while hunting] and does not have a knife with him, may he slaughter using a flintstone or the [pointed] tip of a staff?” He replied,

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“Make the blood flow out with whatever you wish and mention the name of Allah Almighty [before slaughtering].” (Sunan Abi Dawud) Imam Nasaa’i (may Allah have mercy on him) reports this same hadith as follows:

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“[O Messenger of Allah,] I sent out my hunting dog and caught game, but I did not find anything to slaughter it with. May I slaughter using a flint-stone or a staff?” He replied, “Make the blood flow out with whatever you wish and mention the name of Allah Almighty [before slaughtering]. (Sunan anNasaa’i)”2 (4)

: It is reported that ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Abbaas used to say: “[As long as you use] whatever cuts into the jugular veins (al-awdaaj), then you may eat [that animal you slaughter]. (Muwatta’ Imam Malik) On the basis of these hadiths and others like them, the jurists have stipulated that for a lawful slaughter, at least some of the jugular veins (awdaaj) must be cut into. Awdaaj is the plural of wadaj, which for our purposes, simply means “jugular vein.” Of the jugular veins there are two main, external ones (called in Arabic wadajaan, the dual form of wadaj). Ibn Manzuur, the famous Arabic lexicographer of the seventh century AH, quotes


from Ibn Sayyidihi: “The wadajaan are the two veins extending from the head and the lungs, and the plural is awdaaj” (Lisaan al-Arab 2:397). The jurists, however, have extended the usage of the word awdaaj to include the trachea and esophagus. ‘Allaama Kaasaani states, “The awdaaj, are four: the trachea, the esophagus, and the two [external jugular] veins between which lie the trachea and the esophagus” (Badaa’i’ al-Sanaa’i’ 5:41). The trachea is the air passageway, and the esophagus is the food passageway. There is no dispute that the most perfect slaughter is to cut into all four of these passageways – the trachea, esophagus, and both external jugular veins (al-Mughni 11:45). But the scholars have different statements regarding the case when some are cut but others are not.”3 It is not within the scope of this work to delve into the discussion of the permissibility of eating from the meat of an animal when only some of its passageways have been cut at the time of slaughter. Our only intention was to establish the fact that the cutting of the jugular veins (so that the blood flows out) is the only method of slaughter acceptable to Allah, the Most High. As for mentioning the name of Allah when slaughtering; Mufti Usmani continues, ”The general body (jumhuur) of the jurists have concluded that for an act of animal slaughter to be acceptable by Islamic Law, it is also obligatory that the slaughterer perform tasmiya – that is , mention the name of Allah – at the time of slaughtering.”4 The scholars establish this essential pillar (rukn) of a halaal (lawful) slaughter on the following verses.

And eat not of that whereon Allah’s name hath not been mentioned, for lo! It is abomination. Lo! the devils (ash-shayateen) do inspire their minions to dispute with you. But if ye obey them, ye will be in truth idolaters.5

They ask thee (O Muhammad) what is made lawful for them. Say: (all) good things are made lawful for you. And those beasts and birds of prey which ye have trained as hounds are trained, ye teach them that which Allah taught


you; so eat of that which they catch for you and mention Allah’s name upon it, and observe your duty to Allah. Lo! Allah is swift to take account.6

And for every nation have We appointed a ritual, that they may mention the name of Allah over the beast of cattle that He hath given them for food7

And cattle over which they mention not the name of Allah. (All that is) a lie against Him.8

How should ye not eat of that over which the name of Allah hath been mentioned?9

“All of these verses prove, in different ways, that mentioning the name of Allah at the time of slaughtering is among the most important factors in making eating the meat of an animal lawful. The Qur’an does not state this in general terms in just one or two verses, but mentions this essential factor independently for slaughtering, hunting, and holiday sacrificing, and it severely rebukes the one who abandons it, deeming his action forgery against Allah. It also rebukes the one who does not consider as lawful the slaughtered animal over which Allah’s name has been mentioned. All of this establishes that mentioning the name of Allah is one of the most crucial requirements for a lawful slaughter. Furthermore, there are multiple hadiths in which the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, indicates that mentioning Allah’s name is one of the most essential elements that must be carried out in order for slaughtered animals or game to be lawful. Consider the following hadiths:

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(1) It is narrated that Rafi’ ibn Khadij, may Allah be pleased with him said: The Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace said, “[As long as you use] whatever causes the blood to flow out and the name of Allah has been mentioned [before slaughtering], you may eat [the animal].” (Sahih al-Bukhari)

(2) ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Umar, may Allah be pleased with both of them, narrates that: The Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, met Zayd ibn ‘Amr ibn Nufayl10 at the lower part of [the valley of] Baldah. This was before the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, received revelation. A table spread of food was presented to the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, but he refused to eat from it. [He offered it to] Zayd [who] then said [to the Qurayshite pagans]: “I do not eat from that which you slaughter on your [pagan] alters. I do not eat except that upon which the name of Allah has been mentioned.” (Sahih al-Bukhari) This is also evidence that the law of Abraham, peace be upon him, prohibited animals over which the name of Allah is not mentioned.

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(3) Jundub ibn Sufyan al-Bajali, may Allah be pleased with him, relates: On day [the day of ‘Id al-Adha] we offered our sacrifices with the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, and there were some


people who offered theirs before the [‘Id] prayer. [After the prayer,] when the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, turned, he noticed that they had slaughtered before the prayer. So he said, “Whoever slaughtered before the prayer must slaughter another in its place. And whoever did not slaughter before we prayed, let him slaughter in the name of Allah.” (Sahih al-Bukhari)

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(4) ‘Abaya ibn Rifaa’a narrates from his grandfather that the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said: “[As long as you use] whatever causes the blood to flow out and the name of Allah has been mentioned [before slaughtering], you may eat [the animal].” (Sahih al-Bukhari) (5) Abu Tha’laba al-Khushani, may Allah be pleased with him, narrates that he asked the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, some questions. The Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, answered his questions about hunting by saying:

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Whatever you hunt with your bow, mention the name of Allah [over the arrow before releasing it], and then you may eat [the animal you hit]. And whatever you hunt with your trained dog, mention the name of Allah [over the dog before sending it out], and then you may eat [the animal it catches]. (Sahih al-Bukhari) (6) ‘Adi ibn Haatim, may Allah be pleased with him, narrates that the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace said:

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“If you send out your trained [hunting] dogs and mention the name of Allah [over them before sending them], you may eat from what they catch for you.” (Sahih al-Bukhari)


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(7) ‘Adi ibn Haatim, may Allah be pleased with him relates: I said, “O Messenger of Allah, I sent out my [hunting] dog and then found with it another dog [by a dead animal]. I did not know which of them made the catch.” He replied, “Do not eat [the animal], as you mentioned the name of Allah over your dog but not over the other.” (Sahih al-Bukhari)

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(9) ‘Adi ibn Haatim, may Allah be pleased with him, also relates: I said, “O Messenger of Allah, if one of us gets a hold of some game [while hunting] and does not have a knife with him, may he slaughter using a flint-stone or the [pointed] tip of a staff?” He replied, “Make the blood flow out with whatever you wish and mention the name of Allah Almighty.” (Sunan Abi Dawud) These passages from the Qur’an and Sunnah show the extent of emphasis and importance placed on mentioning the name of Allah at the time of slaughtering. Though just one of these references would be sufficient in illustrating that mentioning His name is an essential part of slaughtering, Allah, the Supreme Lawgiver, clarifies this rule over and over again, on a number of different occasions, and with various styles. This repeated emphasis patently demonstrates that mentioning Allah’s name at the time of


slaughtering is immensely important and is an indisputable requirement for the lawful slaughtering of any animal that we have been permitted to benefit from.”11 The fact that Allah and His Messenger, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, have laid out the manner in which our meat is to be made lawful for consumption is proof in and of itself that this is not some mundane act which has no significant consequence. Anytime we have been enjoined to do something in the Qur’an or the Sunnah, that injunction is a divine obligation which requires our complete submission. All of our rightly-guided scholars have always stated that it is an obligation upon us to stubbornly cling to the Qur’an and the Sunnah. Shehu ‘Uthman Dan Fodio stated many times:

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“…that following the Book is an obligation in accordance with the Book. Allah ta`ala says,

"This is a blessed scripture which We have revealed: so follow it."12 Following the Book is obligatory in accordance with the Sunnah by the words of the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace,

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"Verily I have left for you two admonitions. They will never mislead the one who takes hold of them. They are plain speech and silence. For plain speech is the Qur'an and silence is death." Following the Book is obligatory in accordance with the Consensus because consensus upholds that. Likewise, following the sunnah is obligatory according to the Book by the words of Allah ta`ala, "Whatever the Messenger gives you, take it. And


whatever he forbids you, abstain from it."13 Following the Sunnah is obligatory in accordance with the Sunnah by the words of the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, "Take hold of my sunnah and the Sunnah of the Khalifs14 after me. Hold on to them stubbornly." Following the Sunnah is obligatory in accordance with the Consensus because consensus upholds its obligation. As for the religious status of the slaughterer, Mufti Muhammad Taqi Usmani says in The Islamic Laws of Animal Slaughter – a book which we have relied upon heavily in this treatise because of its relevancy and concise presentation – “One of the main requirements for a lawful slaughter is that the slaughterer, aside from being fully sane and of the age of discretion, be a Muslim or Kitaabi (from among the People of the Book). The jurists have agreed on this requirement, and there is no known dissenting view, to the extent that some scholars have even reported consensus in this matter (Mawsu’at al-Ijmaa’ 2:912, 948).” The fact that there is ‘ijmaa’ (consensus) on this issue forces us to digress with the intention of clarifying the definition of ‘ijmaa’ and the legal ruling (hukm) connected with it. Shehu ‘Uthman ibn Fudi states in his Ihya us Sunnah wa Ikhmaad ul-Bida’a (The Revival of the Sunnah and the Destruction of Innovation), “The scope of the consensus, it is as AbdurRahmaan as-Suyuti said in his an-Niqaya, "It is the unanimous agreement of the fuqaha of the time. That means its mujtahids who pass legal judgments upon new occurrences which occur in any time." In the al-Kawkab as-Saati` it says, " (Consensus) is the agreement which comes from the mujtahids of our ummah after the death of Ahmed, may Allah give him peace, who give legal decisions on new issues in any time as it occurs. This is the boundary of excellent proficiency."15 As for the legal ruling (hukm) of ‘ijmaa’, the Shehu continues, “Likewise, following the Consensus is obligatory in accordance with the Book by the words of Allah ta`ala, "Those who oppose the Messenger after the guidance has been made clear unto him and then follows other than the way of the believers; We shall appoint him to that unto which he himself has turned, and expose him to Hell - an evil destiny."16 Following the consensus is obligatory in accordance with the Sunnah by the words of the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, "My ummah cannot agree upon an error. Take hold of the great majority. For whoever separates himself from the community even the length of a hands span, then has removed the noose of Islam from his neck."”17 Mufti Usmani continues, “This therefore means that an animal slaughtered by a non-Muslim not from the People of the Book is unlawful and may not be eaten, even if he slaughters the animal as the Muslims do.”18 As we have mentioned earlier, it is agreed upon by the scholars of the Ummah that the slaughtered animals of the People of the Book is lawful for


us to eat. This is based upon the well-known verse in the Qur’an where Allah, the Most High, states:

This day are (all) good things made lawful for you. The food of those who have received the Scripture is lawful for you, and your food is lawful for them.19 This brings us to our next point. Many Muslims say “This is a Christian or a Judeo-Christian country. Jews and Christians are ahl ul-kitaab (People of the Book); therefore, any meat that I buy in this country is permissible for me to eat.” This notion has become widespread in the last decade. The results have been cataclysmic on the Muslim community, both spiritually and communally. To make matters worse, this erroneous idea has the support of some contemporary scholars of our time (and very recent past). This idea is wrong on many different levels. The main problem with the so-called scholarly arguments presented by these scholars is the fact that they feel so comfortable passing legal judgments regarding issues and situations which they have no intimate knowledge of. It actually is a crime against the institution. Imam an-Nawawi said, in his Adab ul-Fatwa wal-Mufti walMustafti (The Etiquettes and Qualifications of Issuing Islamic Judgment, of a Mufti, and of the one seeking his opinion) that

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"It is not permissible (laa yajuuzu) for a person of one area or country, not aware of the customs and the circumstances of another area to issue fatwa in that place, until he is fully acquainted with the people of it, their style of speaking and what they mean by their words and expressions."20 Some of these scholars have never been to the United States and have never witnessed how Americans slaughter their animals. Most of them base their rulings solely upon the statements of the one asking the question. It was for this reason that I chose to rely heavily upon the book of Mufti Muhammad Taqi Usmani (The Islamic Laws of Animal Slaughter), because he has actually witnessed the process of animal slaughter in many countries, both Muslim and non-Muslim. And he clearly refuses to issue a fatwa on any specific situation that he has not witnessed or is not completely aware of. Not only is he versed in the general principles of the subject matter, but he


is also learned in how these principles are applicable to our specific situation. This is a sign of a true scholar! One such example of the so-called proof that many present as a justification to eat haraam (unlawful) meat is the following: One shaykh was asked: “Is it permissible to eat poultry which is sold in the markets on the basis that it is the meat of the People of the Book...or is it impermissible on the basis that it is a carcass slaughtered by unknown means (i.e. it was it done by cutting off the head or electrocution or some such means) and are the ahlul-kitaab today truly to be considered in this ruling [as those of the past]?” His answer to this question was, “Yes, eating the poultry is permissible because that which is slaughtered by the ahlul-kitaab today is just as what was slaughtered by ahlul-kitaab in the time of the Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam).” Thus, after being lead to believe that it is okay to eat any meat found in the supermarkets of western countries, the questioner posed the following question. “Please clarify the fatwa (ruling) – esteemed Shaykh – If a Muslim goes to the markets and eating places in a Christian land and purchases the lamb, beef or chicken and does not ask about how it was slaughtered?” The answer was; “Yes, he does not ask about the method of slaughter.” To further add insult to injury, the questioner asked the shaykh the following question. “If it is known that some of the slaughterhouses in this country slaughter sheep and cattle along with swine, is it permissible to eat that meat especially when the same instruments are used to slaughter both at the same time?” The response was, “In this case, if we know that the knives are used for both then the meat should be washed and it will be purified through washing.”21 We seek refuge with Allah from the evil of shaytan – the rejected! No Muslim with any knowledge of his ‘usuul – or fundamental principles of his deen (religion) – would take this fatwa seriously. This text should prove sufficient as a refutation of this erroneous ruling. However, it is outside of the scope of this work to deal with his answer to the last question that we quoted because it deals with the ruling (hukm) of water, what makes a thing taahir (pure & clean), or najas (filthly or impure). We’ve only included it to show the absurdity of many of the rulings that the masses are clinging to in order to justify their endless journeys to McDonald’s, Kentucky Fried Chicken, Burger King, and the rest of the fast food temples. This state of affairs should only increase our faith in the veracity of the Prophet Muhammad, may Allah bless him and grant him peace. He warned us about this when he foretold:


)) : ((. "Soon a time will come upon the people in which nothing of Islam will remain but its name and nothing of the Qur'an will remain but its text. Their masaajid will be in fine condition and full but will be empty of guidance. Their scholars will be the worst people beneath the sky: from them will corruption (fitnah) emerge and within them it will return."22 In this same vain, Shehu 'Uthman ibn Fudi, in his book Siraaj al-Ikhwaan, set aside an entire section distinguishing the upright scholars from the evil scholars and then said, "This establishes that many of the so-called scholars and worshippers in this Ummah devour the wealth of the people unjustly and bar them from the path of Allah. And by means of these scholars and worshippers corruption has spread throughout the lands. The Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, "My Ummah will be destroyed by the corrupt scholars and the ignorant worshippers.""

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He, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, also said, "I am not the Dajjaal (Anti-Christ) and I am more fearful for you from something other than the Dajjaal." They said, "From whom O Messenger of Allah?" He said, "From the evil scholars ('ulamaa' us-suu')."" Going back to our original discussion, the food of the people of the book is lawful for us to eat- with conditions. These conditions are the same conditions that have been legislated by Allah and His Messenger, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, upon the Muslims; Namely, [1] the method of slaughter must be proper (and we have discussed this at some length), [2] the name of Allah must be mentioned at the time of slaughter, and [3] the slaughter must be a Muslim or a Kitaabi. Mufti Usmani says, “Since it is undisputed among the scholars of the Ummah that all non-Muslims are in reality of one group, it seems to follow that the slaughtered animals of the People of the Book should be prohibited just like that of the rest of the non-Muslims. But Islamic law distinguishes


the People of the Book from the rest of the non-Muslims in matters of animal slaughter and marriage, as their laws pertaining to both are similar to those of Islam. They used to conform to many of the same requirements that Islam obligated on the Muslims. These rules are present, even till this day, in their sacred scriptures, despite the many corruptions they presently contain. Consider the following selections from their scriptures. In the Old Testament, it is reported in the Book of Leviticus: The fat of an animal found dead or torn by wild animals may be used for any other purpose, but you must not eat it. (Leviticus 7:24) The Book of Deuteronomy states: The blood of your sacrifices must be poured beside the altar of the Lord your God, but you may eat the meat. Be careful to obey all these regulations I am giving you, so that it may always go well with you and your children after you, because you will be doing what is good and right in the eyes of the Lord your God. (Deuteronomy 12:27-28) All Jews and Christians acknowledge these two books. As for the scriptures that only the Christians accept, the following is reported in the Book of Acts: It seemed good to the Holy Spirit and to us not to burden you with anything beyond the following requirements: You are to abstain from food sacrificed to idols, from blood, from the meat of strangled animals and from sexual immorality. (Acts 15:28-29) In another place in the same book, it is stated: As for the Gentile believers, we have written to them our decision that they should abstain from food sacrificed to idols, from blood, from the meat of strangled animals and from sexual immorality. (Acts 21:25) Also, St Paul, who is one of the main leaders of the Christians and an apostle according to their claim, writes in his First Epistle to the Corinthians: No, but the sacrifices of pagans are offered to demons, not to God, and I do not want you to be participants with demons. You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons too; you cannot have a part in both the Lord’s table and the table of the demons. (I Corinthians 10:20-21) It is worth mentioning that St. Paul was the one who, in spite of the teachings of Jesus, peace be upon him, abrogated nearly all the commands


in the Torah that pertained to the Christians. Nevertheless, he still left intact the commands pertaining to slaughtering animals. He prohibited strangled animals and mandated that slaughtering be for God. Hence, it is clear that the original Christian laws for animal slaughter remained as they had been for the Jews. The exclusively Jewish scriptures are also replete with detailed laws pertaining to animal slaughter. The following is reported in the Mishnah, the primary source of sacred law for Jews: If he slaughtered with a hand-sickle or with a flint or with a reed, what he slaughters is valid. All may slaughter and at any time and with any implement excepting a reaping-sickle or a saw or teeth or the finger-nails, since these choke. (Mishnah 513-514) The translator, Dr. Hebert Danby, comments in a footnote under this passage that according to the Jewish tradition given to Moses, peace be upon him, on Mount Sinai, “five things must be avoided in cutting the throat in order that the slaughtering shall be valid: (a) there must be no delay, but the knife must be kept continually moving backwards and forwards; (b) no pressure may be exerted; (c) there may be no thrusting or digging in of the knife under the skin or between the gullet and windpipe; (d) the knife may not be allowed to slip beyond a certain area of the throat – from the large ring of the windpipe to the upper lobe of the inflated lungs; (e) the gullet or windpipe must not be torn out of position in the course of slaughtering” (Mishnah 513). The six passages presented above are from books that the Jews and Christians view as holy texts and the primary sources of their religions’ sacred laws. What we have quoted verifies the following … points. (a) Animals strangled and beaten to death are prohibited in Judeo-Christian law, just as they are in Islamic law. (b) The laws of the People of the Book require that the slaughter be for Allah – in other words, with the mention of Allah’s name – as is evident from St. Paul’s letter to the Corinthians.” All of which brings us to Ibn Kathir’s commentary on the above-quoted verse (Surah al-Maa’idah: Verse 3):

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“Ibn ‘Abbaas, Abu Umaamah, Mujaahid, Sa’eed ibn Jubayr, ‘Ikrimah, ‘Ataa’, al-Hasan, Makhuul, Ibrahim al-Nakha’i, Suddi, Muqaatil, and Ibn Hibbaan have said, ‘It means slaughtered animals.’ This ruling is unanimously agreed upon (mujma’ ‘alayhi) by the scholars: their slaughtered animals are lawful (halaal) for Muslims because they believe that slaughtering for other than Allah is prohibited, and because they do not mention any name except the name of Allah over the animals they slaughter – even though they do espouse certain beliefs above which Allah is greatly exalted.” Therefore, it should be clear from all that was stated that a Muslim who believes in Allah and the last day is not free to eat the regular meat found in most American supermarkets or restaurants. The slaughtered animal must meet three basic conditions: (1) the animal must have been killed properly. Which means that its jugular veins have been cut and its blood allowed to flow. (2) The name of Allah must have been mentioned at the time of slaughter. (3) The one doing the slaughtering must have been a Muslim or a Kitaabi (i.e. a Jew or a Christian referred to as “People of the Book”). If the slaughterer happens to be a Kitaabi the previous two conditions are still incumbent upon the slaughterer in order for the meat which results from that killing to be considered lawful (halaal) for the Muslims to eat. Success is with Allah

O Allah! Show us the true as true and make us follow it. Show us the false as false and make us avoid it. 1 Mufti Muhammad Taqi Usmani, The Islamic Laws of Animal Slaughter (California, USA, White Thread Press, 2006), 26. 2 Mufti Muhammad Taqi Usmani, The Islamic Laws of Animal Slaughter (California, USA, White Thread Press, 2006), 27. 3 Mufti Muhammad Taqi Usmani, The Islamic Laws of Animal Slaughter (California, USA, White Thread Press, 2006), 27-28. 4 Tasmiya: The technical term for “mentioning the name of Allah,” which must be done verbally (not just in the heart) immediately before slaughtering. The words usually used are Bismillahi Allahu Akbar, meaning “In the Name of Allah; Allah is the Greatest.” However, it is acceptable to say other statements (e.g., La ilaaha illa Llah), as long as Allah’s name, and no one else’s, is mentioned. For ease of reading, the English word “mention” and its derivatives will be used for tasmiya throughout the text. 5 Surah al-An’aam: Verse 121 6 Surah al-Maa’idah: Verse 4 7 Surah al-Hajj: Verse 34 8 Surah al-An’aam: Verse 138 9 Surah al-An’aam: Verse 119


10 Zayd (may Allah have mercy on him) was a hanifi, or follower of the then mostly extinct religion of Abraham, peace be upon him. He was the father of Sa’id ibn Zayd, one of the first Muslim, a member of the ten companions promised Paradise by the Messenger, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, himself, and the husband of Faatimah bint al-Khattaab, the sister of ‘Umar al-Faruq, may Allah be pleased with him. Zayd died before the first revelation, but the Messenger, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, testified that he saw Zayd dragging his clothes about in Paradise. 11 Mufti Muhammad Taqi Usmani, The Islamic Laws of Animal Slaughter (California, USA, White Thread Press, 2006), 38-42. 12 Surah al-An’aam: Verse 155 13 Surah al-Hashr: Verse7. 14 The meaning of the word khalif (vicegerent) here refers not only to the four Righteous Khalifs after the Prophet, but to everyone who is referred to in the following prophetic tradition related by Isbahaani on the authority of Anas ibn Malik, "The mercy of Allah is with my khalifs." It was said, "Who are your khalifs?" He said, "Those who give life to my sunnah and teach it to the people. Whoever gives life to my sunnah, has given life to me. Whoever gives life to me, will be with me in Paradise." 15 Muhammad Shareef, Ihya’u as-Sunnah wa Ikhmad al-Bid’a (The Revival of the Sunnah and the Destruction of Innovation by Shehu ‘Uthman Dan Fuduye’) (Sankore’ Institute of Islamic-African Studies, 1996), 5. 16 Surah an-Nisaa’: Verse 115. 17 Muhammad Shareef, Ihya’u as-Sunnah wa Ikhmad al-Bid’a (The Revival of the Sunnah and the Destruction of Innovation by Shehu ‘Uthman Dan Fuduye’) (Sankore’ Institute of Islamic-African Studies, 1996), 6. 18 Mufti Muhammad Taqi Usmani, The Islamic Laws of Animal Slaughter (California, USA, White Thread Press, 2006), 47. 19 Surah al-Maa’idah: Verse 5. 20 Imam an-Nawawi, The Etiquettes and Qualifications of Issuing Islamic Judgment, of a Mufti, and of the one seeking his opinion, (Al-Fardani Publishers and Distributors, Birmingham, UK, 1997), 31 (40). 21 Questions & Answers Concerning the Meat of the Ahlul-Kitaab (People of the Book). Taken from www.troid.org 22 Collected by Imaam al-Bayhaqi and narrated by Ali ibn Abi Talib, may Allah be please with him.


Permissible and Wholesome Food Part 3