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Pictures of animate objects in home?

Title: What should one do with clothing with animate objects? Please clarify the Hadith of angels not entering the home with pictures in it? Can we accept greetings on non-Islamic festivals and practices?

1. Sometime our relatives present our children clothes with the figures of living beings. When there is no opportunity to reject we accept it and remove or colour or patch the eyes – is it permissible, and are such images lose their quality of living beings with no eyes or with removed eyes or even head, or they are still considered as haram? Is there any opportunity to use them or anyway we have to get rid of them?

2. And the similar question: if we are involved in a trade business, and we use catalogues with photos of models and packages and labels with photos, it’s it permissible to keep such things at home and to cover them, or even covered they prevent angels from coming into our house?

3. We don’t celebrate the holidays of Kuffar, and our parents and other relatives who used to celebrate them can’t understand us in this. So, taking into account that in our daily life we mostly use Gregorian calendar is it permissible to accept their wishes for the next year and for a birthday with the intention to soften their hearts and say good words to them on such dates?


In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.

As-salāmu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullāhi wa-barakātuh.

1. It is impermissible to design, store or wear any clothing with animate objects[1]. However you may use the garment by disfiguring the creature, removing the head or transforming the clothing into another use and whereby the picture loses its form altogether. Consider the following narration:

Abu Huraira (may Allah be pleased with him) reports that Allah`s Messenger (peace and salutations be upon him) said: “Jibraeel (peace be upon him) came to me and said: I came to you last night, but the only thing that prevented me from entering was the presence of pictures on the door, pictures inside the home on the curtains and a dog inside the home. Therefore, order the head of the picture on the door to be cut so that it will resemble a tree. And order that the curtain be cut into two pieces strewn on the floor to be trampled over, and order the dog to be removed”[2].

2. The Hadith in reference is as follows:

Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said:

لا تدخل الملائكة بيتا فيه صورة

Translation: The angels do not enter the house in which there is a [animate] picture.[3]

This Hadith refers to such pictures which are displayed with honour, respect and as idols. As for pictures which are found otherwise and are not kept out of respect, but due to necessity, they do not fall under the category of the above-mentioned Hadith[4] and do not entail the same ruling[5]. However, those pictures which are unnecessary must be disposed-off immediately.

Furthermore, you should avoid including photos of models and animate objects in your catalogues. Moreover, the inclusion of photos of modelling women is clearly prohibited in Islam[6].

Our advice is you abstain from including any pictures or photos of animate objects and models in the catalogue. There are many other ways to advertise and attract customers without using photos of models. Whatever may be the apparent loss for doing so, Allah will grant you blessings through other avenues. Allah says:

ومن يتّق الله يجعل لّه مخرجا ، ويرزقه من حيث لايحتسب ، ومن يّتوكّل علي الله فهو حسبه

Translation: and whosoever fears Allah, He will make a way for him to get out (from every difficulty). And he will provide him from sources he could never imagine. And whosoever puts his trust in Allah, then He will suffice him[7].

3. Alhamdulillah, you understand that as Muslims, we do not celebrate holidays according to the Gregorian calendar, like New Years, Easter etc. The act of simply accepting gifts from family members on these occasions will be an expression of accepting the value of such holidays, many of which have pagan or Christian[8] backgrounds[9]. Thus, it will lead to complacency in Din. The issue of complacency in Din overweighs personal feelings and emotions. It will not be permissible to consider personal feelings to soften hearts of the family as opposed to complacency in Din[10].

In practising on Islamic values, one does not have to be rude and harsh and appear inconsiderate. In a kind and diplomatic way, express your aversion of such practices to your family members[11] and educate them with the true injunctions of Allah and His messenger (peace be upon him). There are many other ways to soften the hearts of people without compromising on basic values of Islam.

And Allah Ta’āla Knows Best

Hanif Yusuf Patel

Student Darul Iftaa

Checked and Approved by,
Mufti Ebrahim Desai.


[1] وظاهر كلام النووى في شرح مسلم: الإجماع على تحريم تصوير الحيوان، وقال: سواء صنعه لما يمتهن أو لغيره، فصنعته حرام بكل حال؛ لأن فيه مضاهاة لخلق الله تعالى وسواء كان في ثوب أو بساط أو درهم وإناء أو حائط وغيرها، اه. فينبغى أن يكون حراما لا مكروها إن ثبت الإجماع أو قطعية الدليل بتواتره اه.

[Radd al-Muhtar ala ad-Durr al-Mukhtar, 1:647]

لا تدخل الملائكة بيتا فيه صورة

[Saheeh al-Bukhari, 30:54]

إن أشد الناس عذابا عند الله يوم القيامة المصوّرون

[Saheeh al-Bukhari, 5606]

إن من أشد أهل النار يوم القيامة عذابا المصورون

[Saheeh al-Muslim, 4507]

المصورون يعذبون يوم القيامة فيقال لهم احيوا ما خلقتم

[Musnad al-Imam Ahmad, 6300]

[2] [Sunan at-Tirmidhi , 2806, Dar Ihya Al-Turath]

[3] [Sahih al-Bukhari, 3052/4; Jami` as-Saghir, 9758]

[4] [Fat`h al-Bari, 10: 475, Qadimi Kutub Khana]


لا يكره (لو كانت تحت قدميه) أو محل جلوسه لأنها مهانة (أو في يده) عبارة الشمني بدنه لأنها مستورة بثيابه (أو على خاتمه) بنقش غير مستبين. قال في البحر ومفاده كراهة المستبين لا المستتر بكيس أو صرة أو ثوب آخر، وأقره المصنف (أو كانت صغيرة) لا تتبين تفاصيل أعضائها للناظر قائما وهي على الأرض، ذكره الحلبي (أو مقطوعة الرأس أو الوجه)

[ad-Durr al-Mukhtar ma`a Rad al-Muhtar, 1: 648, H.M. Saeed Company]

(قوله أو ثوب آخر) بأن كان فوق الثوب الذي فيه صورة ثوب ساتر له فلا تكره الصلاة فيه لاستتارها بالثوب بحر

[Radd al-Muhtar ala ad-Durr al-Mukhtar, 1: 648, H.M. Saeed Company] [Imadad al-Fatawa; 4: 254, Maktabah Dar al-Uloom Karachi]


وقل للمؤمنات يغضضن من ابصارهن ويحفظن فروجهن ولا يبدين زينتهن إلا ما ظهر منها وليضربن بخمرهن علي جيوبهن

[Al-Qur`an, 24:31]

ولا يبدين زينتهن: اي الزينة القرط والدملج والخاخال والقلادة …

[Tafseer ibn Kathir, 3:376, Qadeemee Khutub Khana, Karachi]

لعن الله الناظر والمنظور إليه

[Mishkat al-Masaabeeh ma`a Mirqat al-Mafateeh, 5:2059, Dar al-Fikr, Lebanon]

فإن كان يعلم أنه إن نظر اشتهي لم يحل له النظر إلي شيئ منها فقد جاءت الأخبار في الرخصة بالنظر إلي وجهها وكفّها …

[Al-Mabsoot li al-Sarakhsi, 10:152, In Takmilah Fat`h al-Mulhim, 4:266-7, Maktabah Dar al-Uloom Karachi; Al-Fatawa at-Tatarkhaniyyah, 18: 95, Maktabah Zakariyyah, Deoband]

فإن خاف الشهوة أو شك امتنع نظره إلي وجهها فحل النظر مقيد بعدم الشهوة وإلا فحرام وهذا في زمانهم ، وأما في زماننا فمنع من الشابة قهستاني وغيره

[Radd al-Muhtar ala ad-Durr al-Mukhtar, 6:370]

وكل عضو لا يجوز النظر إليه … شعر رأسها

[ad-Durr al-Mukhtar ma`a Radd al-Muhtar, 6:371]

[7] [Al-Qur`an, 65:2-3]


[9] قَالَ – رَحِمَهُ اللَّهُ – (وَالْإِعْطَاءُ بِاسْمِ النَّيْرُوزِ وَالْمِهْرَجَانِ لَا يَجُوزُ) أَيْ الْهَدَايَا بِاسْمِ هَذَيْنِ الْيَوْمَيْنِ حَرَامٌ بَلْ كُفْرٌ، وَقَالَ أَبُو حَفْصٍ الْكَبِيرُ – رَحِمَهُ اللَّهُ – لَوْ أَنَّ رَجُلًا عَبَدَ اللَّهَ خَمْسِينَ سَنَةً ثُمَّ جَاءَ يَوْمُ النَّيْرُوزِ، وَأَهْدَى لِبَعْضِ الْمُشْرِكِينَ بَيْضَةً يُرِيدُ بِهِ تَعْظِيمَ ذَلِكَ الْيَوْمِ فَقَدْ كَفَرَ، وَحَبِطَ عَمَلُهُ، وَقَالَ صَاحِبُ الْجَامِعِ الْأَصْغَرِ إذَا أَهْدَى يَوْمَ النَّيْرُوزِ إلَى مُسْلِمٍ آخَرَ، وَلَمْ يُرِدْ بِهِ التَّعْظِيمَ لِذَلِكَ الْيَوْمِ، وَلَكِنْ مَا اعْتَادَهُ بَعْضُ النَّاسِ لَا يَكْفُرُ، وَلَكِنْ يَنْبَغِي لَهُ أَنْ لَا يَفْعَلَ ذَلِكَ فِي ذَلِكَ الْيَوْمِ خَاصَّةً، وَيَفْعَلُهُ قَبْلَهُ أَوْ بَعْدَهُ كَيْ لَا يَكُونَ تَشَبُّهًا بِأُولَئِكَ الْقَوْمِ، وَقَدْ قَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ – صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ – «مَنْ تَشَبَّهَ بِقَوْمٍ فَهُوَ مِنْهُمْ» ، وَقَالَ فِي الْجَامِعِ الْأَصْغَرِ رَجُلٌ اشْتَرَى يَوْمَ النَّيْرُوزِ شَيْئًا لَمْ يَكُنْ يَشْتَرِيهِ قَبْلَ ذَلِكَ إنْ أَرَادَ بِهِ تَعْظِيمَ ذَلِكَ الْيَوْمِ كَمَا يُعَظِّمُهُ الْمُشْرِكُونَ كَفَرَ، وَإِنْ أَرَادَ الْأَكْلَ وَالشُّرْبَ وَالتَّنَعُّمَ لَا يَكْفُرُ

[Tabyin al-Haqa`iq, 6: 228;  Al-Muhit al-Burhani]

[10] من تشبّه بقوم فهو منهم

[Sunan Abi Dawud, 4:44]

[11] لا طاعة في المعصية ، إنما الطاعة في المعروف

[Sahih al-Bukhari, 6830; Sahih Muslim, 3923]

لا طاعة لمخلوق في معصية الله عز وجل

[Musnad al-Imam Ahmad, 1101]

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