Is It Haram To Celebrate Christmas?

is it haram to celebrate christmas

Is it haram to celebrate Christmas? Celebrating Christmas is forbidden (haram) in Islam because it is an imitation of non-Muslims. Lighting homes with balloons and trees at Christmas is definitely engaging in the celebrations of the unbelievers and is prohibited.

Is It Haram To Celebrate Christmas In Islam?

This is one of the most often-asked questions among Muslims, and many want to know whether they can celebrate Christmas or not.

Christians celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ, whom they believe to be the Son of God, throughout the Christmas season.

Christmas Day is celebrated by Christians as the birth of Jesus of Nazareth, a spiritual leader whose teachings form the foundation of their faith.

Christmas is derived from Christ’s Mass. Christians celebrate it to honor Jesus’ birth.

Can Muslims Celebrate Christmas?

Except for Eid al-Fitr and Eid al-Adha, including the weekly Eid on Friday, Muslims do not observe any festivals.

Any other celebration is prohibited and is either an invention (bidah) if it is celebrated as a way of growing closer to Allah, or an imitation of the unbelievers if it is celebrated as a tradition and not as an act of devotion.

Every innovation in the religion is haram and every innovation takes a Muslim away from the true religion.

It was narrated that Jabir bin ‘Abdullah said:

The truest of word is the Book of Allah and best of guidance is the guidance of Muhammad. The worst of things are those that are newly invented; every newly-invented thing is an innovation and every innovation is going astray, and every going astray is in the Fire.

[Sunan an-Nasa’i 1578]

Any innovation in Islam is strictly prohibited as it deviates Muslim from the true straight path of our Prophet (peace be upon him) whom we are ordered by Allah to follow.

There is also a verse in the Quran that will shed some light on this topic as well.

O People of the Book! Do not go to extremes regarding your faith; say nothing about Allah except the truth.1 The Messiah, Jesus, son of Mary, was no more than a messenger of Allah and the fulfilment of His Word through Mary and a spirit ˹created by a command˺ from Him.2 So believe in Allah and His messengers and do not say, “Trinity.” Stop!—for your own good. Allah is only One God. Glory be to Him! He is far above having a son! To Him belongs whatever is in the heavens and whatever is on the earth. And Allah is sufficient as a Trustee of Affairs.

[Quran 4:171]

Narrated Aisha:

Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) said, “If somebody innovates something which is not in harmony with the principles of our religion, that thing is rejected.”

[Sahih al-Bukhari 2697]

As far as celebrating Christmas is concerned it is totally prohibited in Islam.

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Can Muslims Decorate Their Houses At Christmas?

Decorating one’s home for Christmas is clearly a way of joining the unbelievers in enjoying their celebration.

What the Muslims must do is not mark these days for any form of celebration, decorating, or ornamentation or they will be participating in the unbelievers’ festivals which is surely an innovation as Prophet (peace be upon him) never celebrated or decorated his house at Christmas.

It is haram for Muslims to imitate unbelievers by throwing parties, giving gifts, distributing sweets or other meals, and taking time off work.

Ibn ’Umar (RAA) narrated that the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said:

“He who imitates any people (in their actions) is considered to be one of them.”

[Book 16, Hadith 35]

Those who do any of these things are sinful, whether they do it to be friendly because they are too shy, or for any other reason because they are doing it to please others rather than pleasing Allah.

How To Respond To Merry Christmas In Islam?

This is something that varies depending on the individual. You are free to respond by saying the same. However, if you do not want to wish the other person, politely ignore them.

If you are meeting Christians, you may wish them a Merry Christmas or a Happy New Year, but do not participate in the festivities and never feel that it is a part of the religion.

I need to point out something important here, the definition of the word ‘Christ’ is not simply Prophet, the word is comparable with ‘the Lord’ or ‘son of God’ and immediately the usage of this word is not permitted by Muslims, so in returning the greeting, say ‘the same to you’ or ‘all the best’, ‘best wishes’, etc.

Remember that the Prophet (peace be upon him) taught tolerance and respect. Most people nowadays celebrate Christmas, therefore we must be tolerant and polite to them.

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Final Thoughts

Celebrating Christmas is totally haram and prohibited for Muslims as it is an imitation of the Christians and the unbelievers. We Muslims are forbidden to imitate non-Muslims.

I must clarify that you are not permitted to go beyond sharing the joy of the Christians, as Muslims are not permitted to celebrate Christmas with them. Muslims can reply to their greetings politely so as not to be rude to them but Muslims in no way are allowed to exchange gifts and indulge in celebrations whatsoever.

And Allah Knows Best.

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