Is Music Haram In Islam?

is music haram in islam

Is music haram in Islam or not? The answer is tricky because music is popular these days, and anything popular appears normal.

Music and musical instruments are considered haram in Islam as it allows the devil (shaitan) to control your mind. Islam forbids everything to do with music and singing, although there are some scholars who think music is allowed if it does not involve haram acts or words.

Is Music Haram?

Is Music Haram In Islam?

Scholars are divided on whether music is permitted or prohibited in Islam. There is no formal prohibition of music in the Quran, but there are hints.

Allah says:

“But there are some who employ theatrics, only to lead others away from Allah’s Way—without any knowledge—and to make a mockery of it. They will suffer a humiliating punishment.”

[Quran 31:6]

Scholars think that theatrics include music, singing, musical instruments, and dance based on the different summaries of this Quranic verse.

As far as the Prophet (peace be upon him) there are various hadiths. If you read the hadiths of the Prophet (peace be upon him) all doubts will be cleared.

Narrated Abu ‘Amir or Abu Malik Al-Ash’ari:

that he heard the Prophet (ﷺ) saying, “From among my followers there will be some people who will consider illegal sexual intercourse, the wearing of silk, the drinking of alcoholic drinks and the use of musical instruments, as lawful. And there will be some people who will stay near the side of a mountain and in the evening their shepherd will come to them with their sheep and ask them for something, but they will say to him, ‘Return to us tomorrow.’ Allah will destroy them during the night and will let the mountain fall on them, and He will transform the rest of them into monkeys and pigs and they will remain so till the Day of Resurrection.”

[Sahih al-Bukhari 5590]

Musical instruments are mentioned along with illegal sexual intercourse and drinking meaning that Prophet (peace be upon him) also considers musical instruments haram just like the rest. This hadith also says that some people will make it legal and we know there are some scholars today who we know do permit musical instruments.

There is another hadith which do permit some musical instrument for example duff.

Narrated Ar-Rubai bint Muauwidh:

The Prophet (ﷺ) came to me the night my marriage was consummated and sat down on my bed as you (the sub-narrator) are sitting now, and small girls were beating the tambourine and singing in lamentation of my father who had been killed on the day of the battle of Badr. Then one of the girls said, “There is a Prophet amongst us who knows what will happen tomorrow.” The Prophet (ﷺ) said (to her),” Do not say this, but go on saying what you have spoken before.”

[Sahih al-Bukhari 4001]

So the Prophet (peace be upon him) did not prohibit them from singing just asked them to change the verse which referred to the future as only Allah knows the future.

This hadith allows the duff to be among the halal musical instruments in Islam.

Narrated `Urwa on the authority of `Aisha:

On the days of Mina, (11th, 12th, and 13th of Dhul-Hijjah) Abu Bakr came to her while two young girls were beating the tambourine and the Prophet (ﷺ) was lying covered with his clothes. Abu Bakr scolded them and the Prophet (ﷺ) uncovered his face and said to Abu Bakr, “Leave them, for these days are the days of `Id and the days of Mina.” `Aisha further said, “Once the Prophet (ﷺ) was screening me and I was watching the display of black slaves in the Mosque and (`Umar) scolded them. The Prophet (ﷺ) said, ‘Leave them. O Bani Arfida! (carry on), you are safe (protected)’.”

[Sahih al-Bukhari 987]

Narrated Buraidah:

“The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) went out for one of his expeditions, then when he came back, a black slave girl came to him and said: ‘O Messenger of Allah! I took an oath that if Allah returned you safely, I would beat the Duff before you and sing.’ So the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said to her: ‘If you have taken an oath, then beat it, and if you have not then do not.’ So she started to beat the Duff, and Abu Bakr entered while she was beating it. Then ‘Ali entered while she was beating it, then ‘Uthman entered while she was beating it. Then ‘Umar entered, so she put the Duff under her, and sat upon it. So the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said: ‘Indeed Ash-Shaitan is afraid of you O ‘Umar! I was sitting while she beat it, and then Abu Bakr entered while she was beating it, then ‘Ali entered while she was beating it, then ‘Uthman entered while she was beating it, then when you entered O ‘Umar and she put away the Duff.’

[Jami` at-Tirmidhi 3690]

This hadith indicates that the musical instrument per se is not allowed but duff is allowed by the Prophet (peace be upon him) to use as a beat with the singing. You should also read Is Dancing Haram?

Allah further says:

“And incite whoever you can of them with your voice, mobilize against them all your cavalry and infantry, manipulate them in their wealth and children, and make them promises.” But Satan promises them nothing but delusion.”

[Quran 17:64]

Some make an exception for drums during times of war, and as a result, some scholars have claimed that military music is permitted. But there is no basis for this at all, for a variety of reasons, the first of which is because it is making an exception with no clear evidence. The second reason is that Muslims should direct their minds toward their Lord during times of war.

Some of them claimed that singing is a kind of worship if the objective is to make one obey Allah, but how can someone with the smallest degree of insight and faith in his heart come closer to Allah and deepen his faith by enjoying something He despises?

Those who have become used to music would never want to listen to the Quran or feel happy when they hear it, and they will never experience the same emotion when listening to its verses as they do when listening to poetry. You should also read Is Modelling Haram?

Some claim that music and musical instruments soften people’s hearts and create compassionate feelings. This is not the case because it arouses physical desires and cravings.

READ NEXT: Is Acting Haram?

Final Thoughts

Music and musical instruments are considered haram by all four major schools of thought of Islam. Most scholars also refer to music as prohibited as it draws one closer to the devil and the series and wants of this world rather than preparing and thinking about the Hereafter.

I encourage you to avoid music as much as possible as it can lead one away from the path of our Prophet (peace be upon him). The main thing to ponder is that our beloved Prophet (peace be upon him) never sang or played any musical instrument in his life. If music or singing was suggested in any way then he must have done it for sure.

And Allah Knows Best.

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