Saturday, July 5, 2008

Her father engaged her to him, then her father died and her paternal uncles want to change the agreement

Q) I am a 29 years old man. About two years and half ago I proposed to my work colleague. I agreed with her father about everything and we became engaged, by the will of Allah. During this period of time we had few arguments. I had a very good relationship with her father until he died last January, may Allah have mercy on him. Since the death of her father, my fiancée’s uncles have interfered in everything, and they tried to change the agreement I had with her farther. Eventually one of her uncles returned what I have bought of gold for my fiancée to me to end the engagement. Although my fiancée and I still want to continue. Some wise brothers interfered to solve this problem and both families were happy to maintain the relationship. But her uncles are stipulating illogical conditions to complete the marriage, in opposition with my previous deal with my fiancée’s father. What is the ruling of Islam on this situation? Is it permissible for her uncles to alter the stipulations of the agreement with her father? What is the solution for this stubbornness?

A) Praise be to Allaah.


Before answering your question, it is essential to draw your attention to the fact that working in mixed workplaces with men and women together is not permissible, and it is one of the doors that lead to corruption, as its effects on society are obvious.

We have mentioned the evidence for the prohibition on mixing in question no. 1200.

The one who is faced with the problem of working in a mixed environment – if he cannot leave that job – must avoid looking at women and being alone with them and talking to them about things that do not have to do with work.

Among the negative consequences of haraam mixing is what happens between men and non-mahram women whom they call “work colleagues”, such as haraam looking, talking and correspondence, and in many cases it leads to haraam relationships.


With regard to your question, it seems from your question that you did not do the marriage contract with this woman. Based on that, you are still a “stranger” (non-mahram) to her so it is not permissible for you to be alone with her or to talk to her too much, until the marriage contract is done between you. The marriage contract with a woman is not valid unless it is done in the presence of her wali (guardian). As her father has died, guardianship passes to her paternal grandfather. If there is no paternal grandfather, then it passes to one of her brothers. If she has no brother then guardianship passes to her paternal uncles. The wali does not have the right to prevent marriage without an acceptable shar’i reason. If he does prevent her, then guardianship passes from him to the next closest relative, then to the sharee’ah judge or one who is acting in his stead. It should also be noted that the maternal uncles cannot be walis of the woman.

See the order of guardianship in the answer to question no. 2127.

Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah (may Allaah have mercy on him) said: If the woman likes a man and he is compatible with her, then her guardian, such as her brother then paternal uncles, must marry her to him. If they prevent her from getting married, then the next closest wali should give her in marriage, or the ruler, without (the wali’s) permission, according to scholarly consensus. The wali does not have the right to force her to marry someone she does not like, or to prevent her from marrying someone she does like if he is compatible, according to scholarly consensus. It is only people of ignorance and wrongdoing who force women into marriage or prevent them from marrying, who give their female relatives in marriage to people whom they choose for their own purposes, not the woman’s interests, and force them or embarrass them into doing that, and prevent them from marrying those they want out of enmity towards them or to serve some purpose. All of these are acts of Jaahiliyyah (ignorance), oppression and enmity, and are forbidden by Allaah and His Messenger. The Muslims are unanimously agreed that they are haraam. Allaah has enjoined women’s guardians to look at the woman’s interests, not their own whims and desires, like all other guardians and deputies who act on behalf of others. Their aim should be the interests of the one on whose behalf they are acting, not their own whims and desires. This comes under the heading of the trust (amaanah) that Allaah has commanded should be fulfilled, as He says (interpretation of the meaning): “Verily, Allaah commands that you should render back the trusts to those, to whom they are due; and that when you judge between men, you judge with justice” [al-Nisa’ 4:58]. This is also part of sincerity that is required. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Religion is sincerity (naseehah)” three times. It was asked, “To whom, O Messenger of Allaah?” He said, “To Allaah, to His Book, to His Messenger, to the leaders of the Muslims and to their common folk.”

Majmoo’ al-Fataawa (32/52, 53)

But we advise you not to marry her without the agreement of her family; it is essential to gain their approval and win them over, so that you will not be a cause of breaking of family ties that may never be healed after that.

And Allaah knows best.

Islam Q&A

Should he offer the clerk some money in order to reduce the amount of taxes he pays?

Q) I own three trucks for transporting water. I have a governmental job now. At the end of every month a clerk calculates how many loads every truck has transported, and then asks me to confirm this with the department of taxes.
When I went to the department of taxes, I was asked to open a file for every truck; I thus will have to pay taxes on every truck from the date the truck was manufactured! This means that I will pay more than all that the car made. Maybe half the actual price of the truck!
I found another services office that does the same job but without opening any files, but it charges an extra amount on the actual amount I should pay as taxes. Is it permissible for me to continue the procedure with this office? Bear in mind that I am not sure if this office works or not with the department of taxes.

A) Praise be to Allaah.

The ruling on taxes has been discussed previously. The basic principle is that taxes are not allowed, because they are a haraam maks. See the answer to question no. 39461.

There is nothing wrong with avoiding them by doing something that does not cause one more harm, even if that requires paying some money.

Ibn Abi Shaybah narrated in his Musannaf (5/233) from al-Qaasim ibn ‘Abd al-Rahmaan that when Ibn Mas’ood came to Abyssinia, he was arrested for some reason, and he gave them two dinars so that they would let him go.

Taqiy al-Deen al-Subki (may Allaah have mercy on him) said: What is meant by the bribe that we mentioned is what is given in order to deny a right or attain something wrongfully. If it is given in order to get a judgement concerning one's rights, then the prohibition applies to the one who takes it. As for the one who will not be able to get his rights without giving it, it is permissible (for him to give it), but if he is able to get his rights without it, then it is not permissible. The same applies to what is given for governorships and positions, it is haraam for the taker in all cases, and in the case of the giver, it depends on what we have referred to above. End quote from Fataawa al-Subki (1/204).

Based on that, there is nothing wrong with you dealing with that office, whether they deal with the tax department or not, so long as you cannot find any way to avoid or reduce your taxes apart from that.

See also the answer to question no. 25758.

And Allaah knows best.

Islam Q&A

How to be successful in life

Q) How to obtain success and prosperity in this world and hereafter.What kind of success or prosperity that islam want the ummah islam gain in this world.

A) Praise be to Allaah.

Peace of mind, contentment, happiness and freedom from worries and anxiety… these are what everyone wants, and these are the ways in which people can have a good life and find complete happiness and joy. There are religious means of achieving that, and natural and practical means, but no one can combine all of them except the believers; although other people may achieve some of them, they will miss out on others.

There follows a summary of the means of achieving this aim for which everyone is striving. In some cases, those who achieve many of them will live a joyful life and a good life; in other cases, those who fail to achieve all of them will live a life of misery and hardship. And there are others which are in between, according to what the means he is able to attain. These means include the following:

1 – Faith and righteous deeds:

This is the greatest and most fundamental of means. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):

“Whoever works righteousness — whether male or female — while he (or she) is a true believer (of Islamic Monotheism) verily, to him We will give a good life (in this world with respect, contentment and lawful provision), and We shall pay them certainly a reward in proportion to the best of what they used to do (i.e. Paradise in the Hereafter)”

[al-Nahl 16:97]

Allaah tells us and promises us that whoever combines faith with righteous deeds will have a good life and a good reward in this world and in the Hereafter.

The reason for that is clear: those who believe in Allaah – with sincere faith that motivates them to do righteous deeds that change hearts and attitudes and guides them to the straight path in this world and the Hereafter – follow principles and guidelines by means of which they deal with everything that happens to them, be it the causes of happiness and excitement or the causes of anxiety, worry and grief.

They deal with the things that they like by accepting them and giving thanks for them, and using them in good ways. When they deal with them in this manner, that creates in them a sense of excitement and the hope that it will continue and that they will be rewarded for their gratitude, which is more important than the good things that happen to them. And they deal with bad things, worries and distress by resisting those that they can resist, alleviating those that they can alleviate, and bearing with goodly patience those that they cannot avoid. Thus as a result of the bad things they gain a lot of benefits, experience, strength, patience and hope of reward, which are more important and which diminish the hardships they have undergone and replace them with happiness and hope for the bounty and reward of Allaah. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) expressed this in a saheeh hadeeth in which he said: “How wonderful is the situation of the believer, for all his affairs are good. If something good happens to him, he gives thanks for it and that is good for him; if something bad happens to him, he bears it with patience, and that is good for him. This does not apply to anyone but the believer.” (Narrated by Muslim, no. 2999).

The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) told us that the believer is always gaining and the reward for his deeds is always multiplying, no matter what happens to him, good or bad.

2 – Being kind to people in word and deed, and all kinds of doing good. This is one of the means of removing worry, distress and anxiety. By this means Allaah wards off worries and distress from righteous and immoral like, but the believer has the greater share of that, and is distinguished by the fact that his kindness to others stems from sincerity and the hope of reward, so Allaah makes it easy for him to be kind to others because of the hope that this will bring good things and ward off bad things, by means of his sincerity and hope of reward. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):

“There is no good in most of their secret talks save (in) him who orders Sadaqah (charity in Allaah’s Cause), or Ma‘roof (Islamic Monotheism and all the good and righteous deeds which Allaah has ordained), or conciliation between mankind; and he who does this, seeking the good Pleasure of Allaah, We shall give him a great reward”

[al-Nisa’ 4:114]

Part of that great reward is relief from worry, distress, troubles, etc.

3 – Another of the means of warding off anxiety that stems from nervous tension and being preoccupied with disturbing thoughts is to occupy oneself with good deeds or seeking beneficial knowledge, for that will distract one from dwelling on the matters that are causing anxiety. In this way a person may forget about the things that are making him worried and distressed, and he may become happy and more energetic. This is another means that believers and others have in common, but the believer is distinguished by his faith, sincerity and hope of reward when he occupies himself with that knowledge which he is learning or teaching, or with the good deeds that he is doing.

The work with which he occupies himself should be something that he likes and enjoys, for that is more likely to produce the desired results. And Allaah knows best.

4 – Another thing that may ward off worry and anxiety is focusing all one’s thoughts of the present day, and not worrying about the future or grieving about the past. Hence the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) sought refuge with Allaah from worry and regret, from regret for things in the past which one cannot put right or change, and worry which may come because of fear for the future. So one should focus only on the present day, and focus one's efforts on getting things right today. For if a person is focused on that, this means that he will do things properly and forget about worry and regret. When the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said a du’aa’ or taught a du’aa’ to his ummah, as well as urging them to seek the help of Allaah and hope for His bounty, he was also urging them to strive to attain the thing they were praying for through their own efforts and to forget about the thing which they were praying would be warded off from them. Because du’aa’ (supplication) must be accompanied by action. So a person must strive to attain that which will benefit him in worldly and spiritual terms, and ask his Lord to make his efforts successful, and he should seek His help in that, as the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Strive for that which will benefit you and seek the help of Allaah, and do not be helpless. If anything (bad) happens to you, do not say, ‘If only I had done such-and-such, then such-and-such would have happened.’ Rather you should say, ‘Qaddara Allaah wa ma sha’a fa’ala (Allaah decrees, and what He wills He does),’ for (the words) ‘If only’ open the door to the Shaytaan.” (Narrated by Muslim). The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) connected the matter of striving to achieve good things with the matter of seeking the help of Allaah and not giving in to feelings of helplessness which are a harmful kind of laziness, and with the matter of accepting things in the past which are over and done with, and acknowledging that the will and decree of Allaah will inevitably come to pass. He described matters as being of two types:

1 – Matters which a person may strive to achieve or to achieve whatever he can of them, or to ward them off or alleviate them. In such cases a person must strive and make the effort, and also seek the help of Allaah.

2 – Matters where such is not possible, so he must have peace of mind, accept them and submit to Allaah’s will.

Undoubtedly paying attention to this principle will bring happiness and relieve worry and distress.

5 – One of the greatest means of feeling content and relaxed and of acquiring peace of mind is to remember Allaah a great deal (dhikr). That has a great effect in bringing contentment and peace of mind, and relieving worry and distress. Allaah says:

“verily, in the remembrance of Allaah do hearts find rest”

[al-Ra’d 13:28]

Remembering Allaah (dhikr) has a great effect in achieving this aim because it has a special influence and because of the hope that it brings of reward.

6 – Another of the means of bringing happiness and relieving worry and distress is striving to eliminate the things that cause worry and to achieve the things that bring happiness. That may be done by forgetting about bad things in the past which cannot be changed, and realizing that dwelling on them is a waste of time. So a person must strive to stop himself from thinking of that, and also strive to stop himself from feeling anxious about the future and the things that he may imagine of poverty, fear and other bad things that he thinks may happen to him in the future. He should realize that the future is something unknown, he cannot know what good or bad things are going to happen to him. That is in the hand of the Almighty, the Most Wise, and all that His slaves can do is to strive to attain the good things and to ward off the bad things. A person should realize that if he diverts his thoughts from worrying about his future and puts his trust in his Lord to take care of his situation, and puts his mind at rest concerning that, if he does that, then his heart will be at peace and his situation will improve and he will be relieved of worry and anxiety.

One of the most effective ways of dealing with worries about the future is to recite this du’aa’ which the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) used to recite:

“Allaahumma aslih li deeni alladhi huwa ‘ismatu amri, wa aslih li dunyaaya allati fiha ma’aashi, wa aslih li aakhirati allati ilayha ma’aadi, waj’al al-hayaata ziyaadatan li fi kulli khayr, wa’l-mawta raahatan li min kulli sharr (O Allaah, correct my religious commitment which is the foundation of my life, and correct my worldly affairs in which is my livelihood, and grant me good in the Hereafter to which is my return. Make my life a means of accumulating good, and make death a respite for me from all evil).” (Narrated by Muslim, 2720).

And he said, “Allaahumma rahmataka arju fa la takilni ila nafsi tarfata ‘aynin wa aslih li sha’ni kullahu, laa ilaaha illa anta (O Allaah, for Your mercy I hope, so do not abandon me to myself even for a moment. And correct all my affairs. There is no god but You).” (Narrated by Abu Dawood with a saheeh isnaad, no. 5090; classed as hasan by al-Albaani in Saheeh al-Kalim al-Tayyib, p. 49).

If a person utters these du’aa’s, which ask that his spiritual and worldly affairs may be set right or corrected, with proper presence of mind and sincerity of intention, whilst striving to achieve that, Allaah will grant him what he has prayed for, hoped for and striven for, and He will turn his worry into joy and happiness.

7 – If a person experiences anxiety and distress because of a disaster, then one of the most effective means of relieving himself of that is to think of the worst scenario to which that may lead, and try to accept that. When he has done that, then he should try to alleviate it as much as possible. By means of this acceptance and these efforts, he will relieve himself of his worries and distress, and instead of worrying he will strive to bring about good things and to deal with whatever he can of the bad things. If he is faced with things that cause fear or the possibility of sickness or poverty, then he should deal with that by striving to make himself accept that, or something even worse, with contentment, because by making himself accept the worst-case scenario, he lessens the impact of the thing and makes it seem less terrible, especially if he occupies himself with efforts to ward it off as much as he can. Thus as well as striving to achieve something good which will distract him from his worries about calamity, he will also renew his strength to resist bad things, and put his trust and reliance in Allaah. Undoubtedly these matters are of great benefit in attaining happiness and peace of mind, as well as bringing the hope of reward in this world and in the Hereafter. This is something which is well known from the experience of many who have tried it.

8 – Steadfastness of heart and not being disturbed about the imaginary things that bad thoughts may bring to mind. For when a person gives in to his imagination and lets his mind be disturbed by these thoughts, such as fear of disease and the like, or anger and confusion stirred up by some grievous matter, or the expectation of bad things and the loss of good things, that will fill him with worries, distress, mental and physical illness and nervous breakdowns, which will have a bad effect on him and which causes a great deal of harm, as many people have seen. But when a person depends on Allaah and puts his trust in Him, and does not give in to his imagination or let bad thoughts overwhelm him, and he relies on Allaah and has hope of His bounty, that wards off his worries and distress, and relieves him of a great deal of mental and physical sickness. It gives indescribable strength, comfort and happiness to the heart. How many hospitals are filled with the mentally sick victims of illusions and harmful imagination; how often have these things had an effect upon the hearts of many strong people, let alone the weak ones; how often have they led to foolishness and insanity.

It should be noted that your life will follow your train of thought. If your thoughts are of things that will bring you benefit in your spiritual or worldly affairs, then your life will be good and happy. Otherwise it will be the opposite.

The person who is safe from all of that is the one who is protected by Allaah and helped by Him to strive to achieve that which will benefit and strengthen the heart and ward off anxiety. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):

“And whosoever puts his trust in Allaah, then He will suffice him”

[al-Talaaq 65:3]

i.e., He will be sufficient for all that is worrying him in his spiritual and worldly affairs. The one who puts his trust in Allaah will have strength in his heart and will not be affected by anything he imagines or be disturbed by events, because he knows that these are the result of vulnerable human nature and of weakness and fear that have no basis. He also knows that Allaah has guaranteed complete sufficiency to those who put their trust in Him. So he trusts in Allaah and finds peace of mind in His promise, and thus his worry and anxiety are dispelled; hardship is turned to ease, sadness is turned to joy, fear is turned to peace. We ask Allaah to keep us safe and sound, and to bless us with strength and steadfastness of heart, and complete trust, for Allaah has guaranteed all good things to those who put their trust in Him, and has guaranteed to ward off all bad and harmful things from them.

If bad things happen or there is the fear of such, then you should count the many blessings that you are still enjoying, both spiritual and worldly, and compare them with the bad things that have happened, for when you compare them you will see the many blessings that you are enjoying, and this will make the bad things appear less serious.

See al-Wasaa’il al-Mufeedah li’l-Hayaat al-Sa’eedah by Shatkh ‘Abd al-Rahmaan ibn Sa’di

Ibn al-Qayyim summed fifteen ways through which Allaah may dispel worries and regret. These are as follows:

1- Tawheed al-Ruboobiyyah (belief in the Oneness of Divine Lordship)

2- Tawheed al-Uloohiyyah (belief in the Oneness of the Divine nature)

3- Tawheed of knowledge and belief (i.e., Tawheed al-Asma’ wa’l_Sifaat, belief in the Oneness of the Divine names and attributes)

4- Thinking of Allaah as being above doing any injustice to His slaves, and above punishing anyone for no cause on the part of the slave that would require such punishment.

5- The person’s acknowledging that he is the one who has done wrong.

6- Beseeching Allaah by means of the things that are most beloved to Him, which are His names and attributes. Two of His names that encompass the meanings of all other names and attributes are al-Hayy (the Ever-Living) and al-Qayyoom (the Eternal).

7- Seeking the help of Allaah Alone.

8- Affirming one's hope in Him.

9- Truly putting one’s trust in Him and leaving matters to Him, acknowledging that one's forelock is in His hand and that He does as He wills, that His will is forever executed and that He is just in all that He decrees.

10-Letting one's heart wander in the garden of the Qur’aan, seeking consolation in it from every calamity, seeking healing in it from all diseases of the heart, so that it will bring comfort to his grief and healing for his worries and distress.

11-Seeking forgiveness.



14-Salaah (prayer).

15-Declaring that he has no power and no strength, and leaving matters to the One in Whose hand they are.

We ask Allaah to keep us safe and sound from worries and to relieve us of distress and anxiety, for He is the All-Hearing, Ever-Responsive, and He is the Ever-Living, Eternal.

See Alhomoom – Dealing with Worries and Stress, in the Books section of this site.

And Allaah knows best. May Allaah send blessings and peace upon our Prophet Muhammad and his family and companions.

Sheikh Muhammed Salih Al-Munajjid

Does zakaah have to be paid on all bought land?

Q) We bought 3 pieces of land, one of them we intend to build on it soon. The other two pieces we intend to just keep them in order to sell or use them in the future. Six years passed and we did not pay Zakah on any of the three pieces. What shall we do? And how much should we pay?

A) Praise be to Allaah.

When a person buys land, one of three scenarios must apply:

1 – That which is intended for living on. This is not subject to zakaah, because it is not for trade or business.

2 – He buys the land with the aim of selling it and seeking to make a profit from it. This comes under the heading of trade goods if one full (hijri) year passes. Then he should see how much it is worth when the year has passed, and pay one quarter of one tenth of its value at the time when the year has passed.

3 – When he wants the land that he buys as an investment, so that he can develop it by building shops or apartment buildings to rent them out. No zakaah is due on the land itself, rather zakaah is due on its revenue. If he receives in rent money that passes the nisaab (minimum threshold), and one year has passed since the rental contract was drawn up, then he must pay zakaah on it. End quote.

Al-Muntaqa min Fataawa al-Fawzaan (2/309).

And Allaah knows best.

Islam Q&A

Ruling on wife taking the husband’s last name if the husband insists on that

Q) I read on your website the questions and answers regarding the issue of women changing their surname upon marriage. My question is, can a husband force his wife to change her surname against her will? And what can the wife do if her husband and his family are pressurizing her to change her surname in the name of legal issues?

A) Praise be to Allaah.

It is not permissible for a woman to take her husband’s name or his family name because that is attributing oneself to someone other than one’s father, and imitating the kuffaar from whom this custom was adopted.

Al-Bukhaari (3508) and Muslim (61) narrated from Abu Dharr (may Allaah be pleased with him) that he heard the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) say: “Any man who knowingly attributes himself to someone other than his father is guilty of kufr. Whoever claims to belong to a people when he has nothing to do with them, let him take his place in Hell.”

“when he has nothing to do with them” means, when he has no lineage among them, as is highlighted in some reports.

Based on that, the husband has no right to force his wife to do that, and if he forces her to do it she should not obey him, because it is obedience to a created being which involves disobedience to the Creator. So she should persist in her refusal and explain to him that it is haraam, and look for Islamically acceptable means of establishing her rights from a legal point of view.

For more information please see the answer to question no. 6241 and 1942.

And Allaah knows best.

Islam Q&A

He used the credit card from the National Bank and was obliged to pay an extra amount for buying in instalments.

Q) I took a Master Card from the National Bank in order to buy online. I wanted to pay all at once so that I do not have to pay any extras for installments. I was surprised when I received the receipt that they have added an extra amount for buying in installments and another extra for issuing my purchase, although I was told it is free. I meant to pay all at once, but the clerk who entered my data made a mistake, so they charged me extra and made the payment in installments. When I faced them with this mistake, they said that the bank does not bear a clerk’s mistake and that they will not cancel this extra. They refused all my trials to cancel it justifying this by the ‘bank’s policy’. I cancelled this card and stopped dealing with them. I am waiting for your opinion about what I should do. Am I considered sinful, although it is the clerk’s mistake no mine? Bear in mind that I have already stopped dealing with them until I receive your answer.

A) Praise be to Allaah.

In order for it to be permissible to use credit cards, it is essential that they be free of things that are forbidden in sharee’ah, which includes the stipulation of a penalty or additional payment for paying by instalments or delaying payment, as has been explained in the answer to question no. 104244 and 116442.

It is also essential that the fees for issuing the card do not exceed the actual costs incurred by the bank. See the answer to question no. 97530.

You have done well to stop dealing with this card, because it is not permissible for you to use it in the situation that you describe.

In previous answers we have explained that it is not permissible to use credit cards that impose penalties for delay in paying even if the person is determined to pay on time without any delay, because his entering into this agreement implies approval of and agreement with riba, in addition to the fact that he may delay a payment because he is travelling or busy, in which case he would actually be obliged to pay riba.

As for the amount that they charged you as the result of the employee’s error, the sin of that is on them, and there is no sin on you in sha Allaah, because you did not agree to it, rather you paid it reluctantly.

And Allaah knows best.

Islam Q&A