Miscellaneous

Hiding IP Address

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Q: Is it permissible according to Islamic shariah to use Virtual Private Network and to hide your ip for work related things? I mean not for any kind of illegal activities such as hacking, spying or anything bad or haram? Because I need to use VPN services for my work.

A
: If the VPN service is used to protect one’s personal information or one’s valid Islamic rights and not for spying or hacking, then it is totally permissible to use this, even if there are state laws prohibiting this. Islam has given the individual the right to protect his or her personal information, property, and rights from others in any lawful way possible. Rasoolullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said: “Seek help in the fulfilment of your needs through concealment (privacy)” (Jaamiúl-Hadeeth from Tabarani and others). The hadith prohibits spying and  reading the personal letters of others. Rasoolullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) also prohibited a ruler from spying on his subjects unnecessarily.

Allah Ta’ala knows best

Mufti Siraj Desai

Changing Mosque Qibla

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Q: We have come to know that the qiblah in our masjid is not completely precise. Our qiblah is at the moment at 1 degree north where as the precise qiblah is at 12 degrees north.

We are considering doing some maintenance work in the masjid and we are thinking of changing the carpet in the masjid.

Our question is should we reset the carpet to the precise point (12 degrees) or will it be permissible for us to keep it at its current qiblah direction, keeping in mind that if we reset the musallahs to the precise direction we will loose approximately 20 musallahs in the masjid.

A:
The Jurists and Scholars of Fiqh have mentioned that a discrepancy of 15 to 20 degrees in the Qiblah is acceptable and will not invalidate the salaah. In your case, the discrepancy is not so major, hence I advise to leave the Qiblah as it is and save the space inside the Musjid.

Allah Ta’ala knows best

Mufti Siraj Desai

Greeting before Salaah

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Q: There's one person in the Musjid before Salah he makes Salaam to everyone then he sits in his place. Is this permissible or would this be considered Bid'at (an innovation)?

A:
It is not a sunnah to make salaam to people when entering the musjid for namaaz. Besides if people are making salaah then this constitutes a disturbance. If this is done regularly and consistently then it means the person is considering this a necessary practice, meanwhile it is not even a sunnah; hence, it will be regarded as a bid’ah.

Allah knows best

Mufti Siraj Desai

Greeting for the Deceased

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Q: When I cross a graveyard I say the prescribed Salaam (greeting) but someone told me that when you cross a graveyard where Muslims are not buried you aren't supposed to say anything. Is this true? Is there any Hadith about this?

A:
Salaam is made to Muslim inhabitants of the graves and not to non Muslims. So it should not be read when crossing a non Muslim grave/graveyard.

In the du'aa is Salaam and asking Allah to grant Maghfirat (forgiveness) to the deceased people. Maghfirat is not asked for on behalf of non Muslims.

Moulana Yusuf Laher

Musjid Collections

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Q: As a Mutawalli of a Musallah of my area, our committee has decided to collect donations via having young boys walk around in the masjid on jummah day with a collection box. I would like your assistance in guiding us in making the right decision and guidance in this regard.

A:
It is makrooh and not advisable to collect funds like this in the musjid for the following reasons:

1. It disrupts the musallees if some of them are making salaah.
2. If the lecture is on then it distracts the attention of both the speaker and the audience.
3. If this is done when khutba has commenced then of course, it is totally haraam.
4. Indirectly musallees are being compelled to contribute to the musjid, because one might feel embarrassed to let the box go pass without dropping anything into it when others are doing so. Then the intention is not for Allah but just to avoid embarrassment in the eyes of others.
5. One might feel embarrassed to drop a small amount in the box, even if a bigger amount is not affordable.

All this is contrary to the spirit of contributing to the cause of Allah Ta’ala.

I would advise to have a fixed collection box somewhere at the back of the musjid, as most of the masaajid have. Then whoever contributes will be doing so willingly and sincerely.

Allah knows best

Mufti Siraj Desai
Darul-Uloom Abubakr

Writing on the Body

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Q: Is writing on the hand/body sinful?

A:
If writing or making marks on the hand or body resembles tattoos, then that is not permissible, although it won’t be as haraam and severe as actual tattoos. But it is still sinful because it resembles a haraam act and there is no valid reason for doing so. If one writes on the hand to make a note of something when no paper is available, then that is totally permissible. But this will apply to the hand, like writing down someone’s phone number. It won’t apply to other parts of the body for obvious reasons.

Using stick on tattoos is also not permissible for the above reason, and also that Shariah prohibits disfiguring of the body parts in any way.

Allah Ta’ala knows best

Mufti Siraj Desai
Darul-Uloom Abubakr

Abjad Letters

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Q: I just want to know about the Abjad letters where it came from. Is there a hadith in which Nabi sallallahu alaihi wa sallam has mentioned that alif = 1 and baa = 2 and so on?

A:
Abjad means the numerical value of letters in the Arabic alphabet. This has got nothing to with astrology. Instead, long before Jahiliyya, the Arabs had a value for each letter. Ulema use this when writing Arabic words for ta’weez; instead of writing the Arabic, they write the total value of all the letters in that word. In that way there won’t be any be adabi or disrespect to the Arabic writing especially if one is writing a dua or a word from the Holy Quran.

You must bear in mind that if Ulema do something, it won’t be against Quran and Sunnah, insha Allah. The Ulema are the guardians of Shariah. We who are ignorant must have confidence in the Ulema and not just object through our jihaalat or ignorance. We can’t just assume something is wrong and then start objecting against the Ulema. They have knowledge which we don’t have.

Allah knows best

Mufti Siraj Desai
Darul-Uloom Abubakr

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