Forbidden wealth in Islam

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No one is unaware of the prohibition of taking Riba in Islam. Even the non-Muslims know that Islam does not allow consuming interest. Many verses of the Holy Qur‟an and numerous narrations warn a Muslim against this curse. We give here a few of them:
“O those who believe, do not eat Riba (interest) doubled and multiplied. And, fear Allah so that you may be successful. And, fear the fire that has been prepared for the Disbelievers.” (3:130-31)
At another place the Holy Qur’an states “O those who believe fear Allah and give up what still remains of Riba, if you are Believers. But, if you do not, then listen to the declaration of war from Allah and His Messenger. And, if you repent, yours is your principal. Neither you (shall do) wrong, nor be wronged.” (2:278-79)
Moreover, the Holy Qur’an also says, “Those who take Riba (interest or usury), will not stand but as stands the one whom the demon has driven crazy by his touch. That is because they have said, “trading is like Riba.” And, Allah has permitted trading and prohibited Riba. So, whoever receives an advice from his Lord and stops, he is allowed what has passed, and his matter is up to Allah. And, the ones who revert back, those are the people of Fire. There, they will remain forever.” (2:275)
Commenting on the Quranic verse quoted above, Maulana Mufti Muhammad Shafi says: “An important point to be noted here is that the Qur‟an does not say that the consumers of Riba will rise in a state of madness or insanity. Instead, it refers to a peculiar condition of lunacy, or a „fit‟, (an epileptic attack) or disorientation – as if someone has been embraced by the Satan – and has been driven to the point of lunacy. Perhaps, this carries the hint that a person struck

with lunacy or epileptic attacks, at times, is found to be inactive and silent while usually these people will not be found in that dormant state. Instead, they would be identified by their ranting, raving, and crazy doings, as a result of the satanic touch.
Perhaps, there might be yet another hint here. It is commonly noticed that human senses come to a standstill after fainting or in a state of insanity following a sickness; the feeling of pain or punishment is not there. But these people – who consume Riba – will not be found in that lifeless state. On the contrary, they would feel, with full sensitivity, the pain and the punishment like one overshadowed by a demon.
At present, we have to look for certain compatibility in crime and punishment. When punishment comes from Allah, the Almighty, for a person or a group of people, against a certain crime, it is certainly appropriate to the crime. Therefore, raising the numbers of the consumers of Riba, without paying due attention to its consequences, of its crime, on the Day of Resurrection, is perhaps indicative of a certain parallelism. Is it not that the consumer of Riba is so drunk with his greed for money that he is neither kind to anyone, or to the poor, nor does he blush, or feels ashamed before anyone for what he does? Since, he was really senseless during his lifetime in the world; he will be raised on the Day of Resurrection in that same condition. Or, maybe, he will be punished in the Hereafter, because in the mortal world, he had demonstrated his lack of reason, as reason, that is, he had declared „Riba lawful and compared it to be like trade‟; therefore, it is possible that he may be resurrected deprived of all his sanity.” (Ma’arif Al-Qur’an, 1:667)
In addition, we would like to mention here a few Prophetic narrations to drive home the point that taking Riba has been outlawed in the Religion of Islam:
Jabir Ibn Abdullah reported that the Holy Prophet Muhammad (saws) said, “The Messenger of Allah cursed the one who accepts Riba (interest or usury), the one who pays it, the one who writes it, and the person who bears witness to it, and said, “They are all alike.” (Muslim)
Samurah Ibn Jundub has reported that the Apostle of Allah (saws) said, “This night, I saw two men who came to me and brought me to a sacred land. We walked until we reached a river of blood, wherein a man was standing, and another man was standing on the bank of the river with some stones before him. Then, the man who was standing in the river came forward, and when he intended to come out of the river, the other man threw a stone at his mouth, and turned him back to the place where he was earlier and thus he began to do the same with him whenever he tried to come out of the river by throwing a stone at him and turning him back. I asked him, “What is that which I have just seen going on?” He replied, “He is the one who used to take Riba.” (Bukhari: 2943, Musnad Ahmad: 19236)
And, the Holy Prophet Muhammad (saws) said: “There are four kinds of people about whom Allah has decided not to admit them to Paradise and not to let them taste its bliss: the one who is addicted to wine, the one who takes the Riba (interest), the one who exploits the property of an orphan and the man who is disobedient to his parents.” (Mustadrak Hakim)
Abdullah Ibn Hanzalah reported that the Messenger of Allah (saws) said, “A Dirham, which a man receives as Riba is, in the sight of Allah, more serious than thirty three acts of fornication or adultery in Islam.” (Musnad Ahmad: 20951)
Bara Ibn Azib has narrated that the Messenger of Allah (saws) said, “There are seventy two kinds of Riba the least of which is tantamount to committing adultery with one’s own mother.” (Al-Mujam Al-Awsat, 7:158)
And, it is stated that the Holy Prophet (saws) has forbidden the fruits to be sold or purchased before they are eatable, and said, “When Zina (adultery) and Riba (Usury or interest) become rampant in the people of a town they themselves invite the Punishment of Allah.” (Reported by Hakim)
Abu Hurairah (ra) has reported that the Messenger of Allah (saws) said, “On the Night of Meraj when we reached the seventh sky, I looked upwards and saw thunder, lightning and thunder-claps. Then, I came across some people whose stomachs seemed to be houses full of snakes – one could see them from the outside. I asked Jibrail, “Who are they?” He replied, “They are those who used to take Riba (interest or usury).” {Musnad Ahmad, Musannaf Ibn Abi Shaibah, 7:335, Musnad Harith I:169}

The Phenomenon of Accumulating Money by Bank Interest
A large section hailing from the Muslim community is nowadays plagued by the cruel necessities of the system of banking, which thrives on interest over the money lent to those in need by the bank. Some Muslims appear to have reconciled themselves over the necessity of this fact of carrying out their transactions in their everyday business life, and most of them instead of feeling ashamed over this act try to devise baseless reasons and theoretical necessities in order to be seen by others in keeping up with the times. They try to accumulate as much money as possible by submitting to this system of banking by giving explanations that are not accepted by the Islamic Shariah. Since the communist system gained footage in the world on a global scale, the practice of gambling, interest banking and many new ways of usury, both disguised and undisguised, have increased in this world, and have made inroads into the Muslim society in a dramatic way.
However, the most distressing aspect of this phenomenon is that the people now have lost the sense of distinguishing between rights and wrongs of consuming such interest with the dramatic surge of creating new means of wealth by money-lending institutions. They disguise interest under various names such as commission, and goodwill money etc., in order to entice the Muslims in placing their trust in those banks, and on the face of it, they make it appear to them as Halal earnings. The Muslims in their eagerness to acquire wealth silently acquiesce without going thoroughly into the fine print, which is written usually in microscopic letters in such agreements. And, once they go over the fine print, which is carefully hidden into the agreement with the help of a believing Muslim lawyer, they will at once come to the conclusion that the money, which is gained for them by their banks is interest, sometimes multiplied many times over.
Generally, people deposit their funds in banks and receive interest on them. Some of them even eat from the money generated through the interest schemes, while some others, who are pious, and fear Allah and the Hereafter, give them in charity. Nevertheless, it is the opinion of Ulama – by consensus – that both of them are sinners according to the Islamic Shariah though in different degrees. As the consumption of interest is prohibited, in the same way, it is also Haram

to be involved in interest related bargains or schemes that are prevalent under the present day banking systems.
All the more surprising is the fact that some individuals deposit a small amount of fund in banks for their children, which keeps increasing day by day in the form of interest so that when the child grows older and needs money to further his education, business, marriage or to fulfill his other aspirations in his adult life, the fund is withdrawn for the purpose for which it is sought. If the child is a female, the funds are used for providing her with a magnificent dowry and for purchasing expensive dresses, ornaments and suits for her, and the bridegroom’s party and wedding gifts.
On the other hand, there are some who are considered by others to be modern, keep themselves abreast of the contemporary developments, latest trends and up-to-date needs, and style themselves as experts, and try to address the socio-economic problems of the Muslim community. They openly encourage others in committing the heinous crime of using the interest money given to them by the banks. They believe that the only reason for the backwardness of the Muslims across the world is that they do march in tune with the changing times, where it has become almost impossible to conduct a business on the Islamic lines – which prohibits interest in all its forms. They advocate following the line of the present day banking system, which is based on usury and interest. They think that this is the only cause that the Muslims are lagging behind in many social, economic and educational fields for they are following an antiquated, outdated religious Islamic set of rulings, and as such become victims to exploitation by others who are keen in depriving of their rights. In addition, there are other Muslims who think that the interest prohibited in Islam is the one, which used to be levied by the landlords in the ancient times, who lived their lives on money earned through usury, which was doubled, tripled and quadrupled, bonding the lender to the creditor for life and not the benevolent modern banking system and the current interest procedures. They think that the interest offered by the modern commercial systems is lawful in Islam. They argue that the modern system of interest was not current in the era when the Holy Qur’an was revealed. The only system of receiving usury was the type that was done by the landlords and zamindars, and they in turn exacted it by all means foul and unclean from the unfortunate people that borrowed money from them to meet some of their most basic needs. However, this type of reasoning is also based on flimsy grounds. We have answered this question in detail in our book, “Fiqhi

Maqaalat.” Those interested in knowing more details about the existing systems may refer to this book of mine to get their doubts clarified for all time to come.
For the moment, we are interested in talking about the particular group of people who are following the deviant ways of the Satan by believing that the interests accumulated in banks are not usurious in nature and following the system, and consuming the interest freely is just like trade. We invite their attention to the quotations of the Qur’an and the Hadith in which the system of interest has been seriously denounced and for which Allah, the Almighty, in the Holy Qur’an, has announced severe punishments.

One of the ways of receiving interest, which is becoming widespread in our society, is through mortgage. Generally, people say that there is no interest involved in this system on the money neither there is a rent. But, again, we invite our readers to think clearly the benefit a person is receiving on the house that is mortgaged by him to others and if it is not interest money in a disguised form, then, what is it?
If the landlord of the house had not been given the funds in advance, would he give this house to anyone to live in? In this case, the house is given without rent for the funds presented in advance to the owner. And, if we think clearly then we know that this is the very “interest,” which a person receives for that fund offered in advance.
It is explained in a Hadith that the Prophet of Allah said, “Every debt that attracts a benefit is tantamount to Riba.” (Ilaus Sunan, 14:499)
Yazeed Ibn Abi Yahya reports that once he asked Anas Ibn Malik (ra), “O Abu Hamzah, one of us gives some debt to someone and the credited person gives something as a gift to the creditor. Is it right?” He answered, “If you give someone a credit and he gives you anything as a gift, then you should not accept it. If he gives you a mount over his animal, then do not ride it.” However, it is right if both of them used to do so before they were involved in this bargain.” (Sunan Al-Baihaqi, 5:350)
Imam Baihaqi has reported that once a person asked Abdullah Ibn Masood, “Suppose, there is a person who took a credit of a few Dirhams from a person

and then the person taking the credit gives a mount to the creditor over his animal, then is it right?” Abdullah Ibn Masood (ra) answered, “The benefit the creditor has received from the person by riding his animal is an interest.” (Sunan Al-Baihaqi, 5: 350)
Now, we invite our readers to think again, that when a person accidentally benefits by riding the animal offered by the borrower, it becomes a benefit, which amounts to interest, then how is it possible to say that it is right to benefit from the house of a person, which is given in the present days on the system of mortgage.
There are a few people who have invented a technique to make the system of mortgage as lawful, that is they give some rent to the owner of the house but the rent is so minimal that it cannot be called as a rent according to the prevailing market trends. For example, there is a house, which may be rented for five thousand rupees, in a general case, to a person, but in this type of mortgage, the rent is defined as fifty or hundred rupees and it is thought that the person has become safe from the curse of interest in this way. But this is an illusion, a snare laid by Satan, the accursed, who has vowed to lead the believing Muslims from the Path of Allah. Nevertheless, the Islamic Shariah has successfully seen through the guiles of the Satan and ruled out such transactions as unlawful on a believing Muslim, who cannot make an unlawful thing as lawful by resorting to this sort of financial stratagem. He can deceive those who are unlearned in the etiquettes of such transactions, but he cannot deceive Allah (swt) who is a witness to all transactions. A person will be answerable to Him on the Day of Judgment by being a partner into such a transaction. If the money had not been paid, as a mortgage towards the house, then it is impossible for the landlord to lease his house on rent to strangers for a pittance of its original worth and at the prevailing market rates.
These details clearly show that the main reason behind the reduction of the rent is the huge sum that has been paid on the house in advance, which is undoubtedly interest according to the narrations, which we have quoted above. Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi comments in his book “Safi-e-Mamailat”, “Some people have devised a trick that is they take the land of someone for example for eighty rupees and stipulate that he gives one rupee as rent per annum. Since the rent of one dollar per annum is on account of credit, it would be an obvious act of interest, which is unlawful and a prohibited way of benefit.”

One of the many systems of interest-making schemes offered by money lending societies and banks, which is becoming common nowadays, is the custom of chit fund for which many new techniques have been devised by fraudulent people to deceive honest people of their hard earned money. Generally, the current system of chit fund is that a few people, for example, ten people gather together and pool in their money, and may give ten thousand rupees per head, which, as a result becomes one lakh rupees. Thereafter, on the basis of casting a lot someone is given the whole amount and the one who takes the whole fund does so by foregoing a particular amount for taking home the entire amount and using it for his benefit but this amount is lessened by two or three thousand rupees. The money that is deducted (i.e. two or three thousand rupees is taken by the person who runs this system of chit funds) and this form of financial dealings is completely prohibited by the Islamic Shariah. If we examine it closely we find that it is a form of interest, because a person is making money on the capital fund, without the exchange of any commodity. It is a matter of great shame that many Muslims have unwittingly involved in this type of dealing.
However, it is lawful to do the same way of casting a lot without slashing or curtailing or charging for it a particular amount. If it is done in this way then it is a very good idea of mutually benefiting from one another and helping each other in times of need.

Bribery is also similar to interest, and is prohibited in Islam, in the strongest terms and comes under the forbidden category. The leading Islamic theologians have given the definition of bribery in the following way: “It is an amount which is offered to make an unlawful thing as lawful and a lawful thing as unlawful.” (At-Tarifat, 1:365)
In order to make this issue even more clearly we would like to present some examples. Let us suppose that there is a person, who is indebted to some other person by borrowing an amount from him, which he has to pay in a particular

timeframe. And, when he fails to meet the terms, he is hauled before the court to recover the amount that he has borrowed from the other person. Now, the indebted person offers a bribe to the judge so that he decides and issues his judgment in the favor of the person who has borrowed the money and in the process denies the right of recovery to the owner of the money. So the word “bribery,” is used here, is meant, to destroy the rights of a person by wrong means. Since, the judge has destroyed such a right, it would not be legal for him to consume that money and he had in the process transgressed against the rights of another person and will bring on himself the wrath of Allah (swt), perhaps, in this world or in the Hereafter, unless he repents and makes amends to correct his misdeeds.
In the same way, the officers who are employed in the government offices receive extra money for completing the formalities and fulfilling their duties, while discharging the rights of others, and make demands of money in return of the favors done by them. Then the funds gained by this method are also considered as bribery. The Islamic scholars have opined that if a person offers some amount to a judge to decide in the right direction then it also would be considered, as bribery for it is the responsibility of the judge to decide the matters in the just manner for which he is already paid by the State. (Shami, 5:362, Nihayatuzzain, 1:380)
This opinion clearly shows that the officers and political leaders who receive handsome funds over fulfilling their responsibilities and duties for which they are paid by the government are committing a serious crime, and it is a serious sin to consume the money, which is received for favors done to others, which is their rightful due, for which they are appointed by the government and are given their pay.
When on the one hand the bribery is prohibited, it is unethical and a cruel transgression on the rights of the other person. For this reason this act has been discouraged in Islam. We present here a few Hadith narrations:
Abdullah Ibn Amr (ra) reports that the Messenger of Allah has cursed the one who offers bribery and the one who receives it. (Abu Dawood, 35:80, Tirmidhi: 13:37, Musnad Ahmad: 6532, Mustadrak, 4:115)

Thauban reports that the Messenger of Allah has cursed the one who offers bribery and the one who takes it and the one who mediates between them. (Mustadrak, 4:115, Musnad Ahmad: 22452, Ibn Abi Shaibah, 4:444, Shuab Al-Iman, 4:390)
Abdullah Ibn Amr (ra) also reports that the Messenger of Allah said, “The one who offers bribery and the one who receives it both are destined to enter the Hellfire.” (Al-Mu’jam Al-Ausat, 3:296, Al-Mu’jam As-Sagheer, 1:57)
All these Hadith narrations clearly indicate that the consumer of bribes will be inflicted by severe punishment in the Hereafter by Allah (swt). According to the majority of the Islamic Scholars, it is a great sin to receive bribery and a forbidden act. Some others think that this act is equal to Kufr. Imam Nas‟ai has reported from Masrooq that he said, “If the judge receives a gift, then it is Haram for him. And if he receives bribery, then it is equivalent to Kufr.” The same opinion has been narrated from Umar Ibn Al-Khattab. Once Masrooq asked Umar Ibn Al-Khattab, “Is it a Haram act to receive bribery while judging a case?” Umar Ibn Al-Khattab answered, “Not only it is Haram, but it is also an act of Kufr. An act, which is termed as “Haram,” is that a person enjoys his proximity with a king and there is another person who needs help from the king but the person, who is near to king, is not ready to fulfill his need without taking a bribe.”
In brief, bribery is one of the worst evils, which has no place in Islam. It can never be accepted in an Islamic society. But it is again a sad fact that many people appear to be involved in this wrong act in keeping themselves in step with the changing trends in the modern society, which thrives on bribes earned from others. They look at it as a social evil, which has now become a necessity, and by their erroneous logic, they consume from it wholeheartedly without any sense of wrongdoing on their part. There are many people who usurp others of their money as bribes every month, and take home an amount, which is far greater than their salary. It has become a matter of routine for the officials to receive bribes for they do not appear to be ready with their help – which is their duty to the people – without receiving a bribe. Such people should repent immediately and seek forgiveness from Allah for their sins so that they may be saved from the Everlasting Hellfire in the Hereafter.

Gambling is decreed in the Holy Qur’an as unlawful and any income that is earned out of this is strictly forbidden for consumption. Every Muslim who has studied the Holy Qur’an and has attended Friday sermons and other religious lectures, knows that this is a prohibited act in the Holy Qur’an and the Noble Traditions of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (saws), and as a result they are completely forbidden in the Islamic Shariah by all the eminent jurists belonging to different schools of thought. All the leading authorities, by consensus, have declared that it is a great sin for a believing Muslim to participate in gambling. The Holy Qur’an makes this point rather forcefully in the next few lines in the verses, which we have quoted from the Sacred Text where it says: “They ask you about wine and gambling. Say, ‘In both, there are a great sin, and some benefits for people. And their sin is greater than their benefit.” (2:219)
After proclaiming it as an unlawful act in clear, unambiguous terms, the Holy Qur’an proceeds to shed more light on this subject reinforcing its prohibition in another place in the Sacred Book, which says: “O you who believe! Wine and gambling and stone altars and drawing of lots with arrows are only an abomination, a work of Satan; so shun it, that haply you may prosper.” (5:90)
Now that we have familiarized ourselves with the injunctions of the Holy Qur’an on this subject, we turn our attention to the Prophetic Traditions that declare it as an unlawful act. Abdullah Ibn Abbas has narrated that the Messenger of Allah (saws) said that: “Allah has prohibited Muslims from drinking, gambling, and beating drums. And everything that intoxicates is unlawful.” (Musnad Ahmad: 2476, Abu Dawud: 3686, Sahih ibn Habban, 12:187)
Abdullah Ibn Amr reports, “In the first place, the Messenger of Allah prohibited from drinking, gambling, beating drums and taking Ghubaira (a kind of wine that was drunk in the pre-Islamic times). And, later he commented that every intoxicating substance, which is consumed, is Haram (unlawful).” (Abu Dawood: 3685, Musnad Ahmad: 6478)
In another Hadith it is stated that the Messenger of Allah (saws) said: “The person who gambles and then stands in prayers is like the one who makes Wudu

(ablutions) through pus and the blood of swine. Do you think his prayer will be accepted?” (Al-Mu’jam Al-Kabeer, 22:292)
Abu Hurairah has narrated that the Messenger of Allah (saws) has said: “The person who invites his companion, „Come, let us gamble, then he should give something in charity (to atone for this act i.e. for merely uttering those words). (Bukhari: 4482, Muslim: 1307, Tirmidhi: 1465, Nasai: 3715)
Abu Hurairah narrates in another hadith: “The person who plays backgammon is like the one who eats swine and the person who plays it without stipulation or gambling is like the one who stains his hands with the blood of swine and the one who attends and sits with such people are like the one who looks at a swine.” (Al-Adab Al-Mufrad, Imam Bukhari, 1: 435)
Why is gambling prohibited in Islam?
All the verses that have been quoted above from the Holy Qur’an and the teachings of the Prophet Muhammad (saws) make it obvious to all of us that gambling is prohibited in Islam, and there can be no differing views about it, or any concessions are granted for indulging in this illegal act. In the next few paragraphs, we will attempt to define the term “gambling” as it has been understood from the Holy Qur’an and Hadeeth by eminent Islamic jurists and also the proceeds or gains that one may accrue by participating in this illegitimate act; and then discuss in some detail the consequences that result to those Muslims who take the verses of the Holy Qur’an and the Hadeeth lightly in this world!
Gambling is defined as an act in which stipulation is made on certain conditions, and anything is suspended with condition specified: if something happens, on which a person has staked his wealth, money or possessions; and in the event such a thing comes to pass, then the person who has taken that chance and risked the possessions, which are under his care, will stand to gain some benefit, and in doing so he will have achieved a profit. However, if the event or outcome does not happen on the lines envisaged or visualized by him, then such a person will have to suffer a complete loss of the amount, which he has gambled, and loses his possessions to another person who has played this game of risk with him. For this reason, Abdullah Ibn Abbas once commented, “To take a risk is gambling,” and that is doing an act, or saying something by word of mouth that may give someone a lot of wealth, with the rider that one may

lose all his wealth – as it happens in the case of a lottery. Some of the Companions of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (saws) have commented that indulging in such an act, where it involves a great amount of speculation, which may deprive a person totally of his wealth and all personal belongings leaving him a pauper, and penniless, is like taking part in gambling, and have cautioned such speculators, who play fast and loose, with the money that Allah (swt) has placed in their trust for their benefit and for that of his family. They have affirmed that all such foolhardy possibilities, which may endanger or threaten a person’s existence by his impulsive actions, and jeopardize the interests of his family, are framed into the prohibited category because “every risky thing is a gambling,” in the Islamic Shariah.
As for the question about why gambling has been prohibited in Islam, then Mufti Muhammad Shafi has provided the answer in his pioneering work on the Holy Qur’an (Ma‟ariful Qur’an) where he says:
“In brief, gambling is an act that involves two or more persons, where the gain of one person is dependent upon the loss of the other. The total gain of the winner is an outcome of the total loss of the loser because this transaction does not increase the (national) wealth or production in any way, and the money or material involved merely exchanges hands. The amount of wealth remains the same, as it was before; the act of gambling took place between two or more parties. What happens through this game of chance is that one person is sucked dry of all his wealth, which has now reached into the hands of another person, therefore, indulging in Qimar, is a complete intellectual bankruptcy of a society, which allows and encourages this form of playing with games of chance; and is the death of human morality. Is it not proper that a man, who is elected to the high office of a country or a land, who should act as an agent of doing public good, and playing a role-model for them by doing acts of sympathy and sacrifice, that involves uplifting the miserable conditions of the poor and needy in a society, which stoops to the level of a beast, and allows gambling to flourish in his land by legislating it into a law and codifying it into the constitutions of the world, and starts taking a delight seeing his life in the death of his brother, and finding delight in his distress, and searching for gain in his loss, and goes about and exploits all his abilities to promote his selfishness or a few members in his society? Then, such a person should be considered as an enemy of the state, for as a head of state, he should work towards the good of each and every person or citizen in his country – and not consider just the

interests of a select few – because of the tax, which they may bring into the national exchequer is far more than what is taken from others, then such a country will not prosper, for it allows some persons to live on the earnings of others – who have earned it, by working for it the hard way. Those persons who thrive on gambling for profit and pleasure should be declared as offenders, who are harming the interests of the country both in the short and the long run, and they should be exposed before others as parasites of a society, of which they form a part!
And, exactly, contrary to this forbidden act of gambling are the permissible forms of transactions in trade, where both the parties, buy or sell, which realizes profits for both. In this way, the wealth is created and circulates in a society, and leads to an increase through exchange of commercial commodities as the buyer and seller both find it beneficial, and in their interests to trade with one another; and in the process it boosts the economy of the country.
Gambling is harmful because the gambler becomes addicted to this type of earning when he finds out that he can earn a lot without having to work hard for a living or slave for his monthly salary, especially if he is on a winning streak. He always keeps on dreaming of striking it rich and “make a killing” in the gambling casinos of the world or the gambling dens in his neighborhood. As a result, he leads an indolent and a carefree life by simply sitting in a place and grabbing the money, possessions and belongings of others at no great cost to himself, perhaps trough a bet, especially when it involves no hard work to earn money. However, according to the Law of Averages, if such a person runs into bad weather, while he is on a gambling spree, then he will soon find that he has lost everything he has gained by the same means, which he employed to deprive other people of their money. Some scholars have said that gambling has been called Maisir (as derived from the word ‘Yusr’ meaning easiness) because one can easily take possession of what belongs to the other through this process. Even if gambling deals revolve around a small number of people such as two or four, their harmful effects, mentioned in the paragraphs above, become apparent very clearly. However, we pride ourselves in living in a modern age, called ‘the Age of Progress’ by those leaders who are handicapped by a myopic vision and lack an insight into the evils of gambling and its consequences. We see wines being sold along with hard liquor by traders giving them new names and labels in the form of mineral water bottles, and other eatables, which are allowed by

the law; and in the process keep the brand names of hard liquor alive in the minds of the alcohol addicts to tell them albeit in an indirect way that their favorite brands of hard drinks are theirs for the asking in the nearest wine store for money. New kinds of innovative advertising techniques and sales promotional tactics are devised by corporate giants to sell their liquors through advertising by indirect means – where they are banned by law by advertising them by direct means – to entice people into making them alcoholics. They take to drink every time they are beset by troubles to drown their sorrows – and in this way, they live in an ‘escapist,’ make-believe, and a dream world, where they hope to wake up one day from their alcoholic haze to find that all the troubles in their lives have simply vanished away. By then, the damage done will have taken a severe toll on the person’s health, and these people will find that they simply cannot do without their favorite brand of liquor for they have become addicted to alcohol and have turned alcoholics, even though everything is going right in their lives.
Soon, they will come to know from the doctor the various side-effects of drinking liquor for which they have fallen victim too; and at times many of them will have died of liver cirrhosis – a disease usually common in alcoholics – which is beyond the pale of any sort of treatment that can be given to them by their doctors, and passing into the next world for their judgment with Allah from where there are no comebacks! Once there, they will then realize to their dismay that they had given up their lives away in the world for nothing and had gained nothing good from it to prepare them for the Hereafter; and they will find themselves ranked among those who are doomed and the lost, for whom there will be no reprieve given even if they were to ransom all the weight of the earth in gold for their Salvation in the Hereafter.
And, this is also the case with banks and life insurance companies of the world who make a living by levying heavy interest rates upon the unfortunate people who are duped into borrowing from them. They encourage the fence-sitters with all types of allurements and dazzling returns on their money; and urge them to invest their money with them for safekeeping and for rewarding returns. The depositors are conned by advertisements‟ blitzkriegs that are launched to entrap them through television channels, daily newspapers and magazines, addressing their fears for their future when they reach the age of retirement, and are too old and infirm to look after themselves to earn a decent living. So, in order to keep

their self-respect intact in the society of which they are a part, it is only proper that they should invest their money into their safe schemes, which will give them assured and steady returns for the rest of their lives. They will earn the respect of their children and others in the family when they find out that their parents are not dependent on them for a living, and they are free to enjoy their earnings without any sense of responsibilities on them and others. And, this sort of an upbringing of children will have its share of tragedies and they will live and die in this society as misfits and doom their lives to eternal perdition in the Hereafter!
These earnings can also be compared to a form of gambling where thousands of methods and dubious forms that have gained currency among the general masses in modern times to legalize the term after the fashion of their own liking. Some of these are so highly collective that the amount of contribution from a whole nation keeps up adding bit by bit, and in case there is a loss, then, it gets spread out to everybody and in this way does not become conspicuous to their depositors. When an amount from this total take reaches the hands of one person, his gain appears to be prominent, therefore, people tend to look at this money as their personal gain, which they had wisely invested, and given it into safe hands for investing money on his behalf without paying any heed to the collective loss of the citizens of a country. Consequently, they are trapped into believing that these new kinds of earnings are valid in the Islamic Shariah. However, the Islamic Shariah has wisely forbidden it after taking into consideration all those harmful effects of such financial schemes on a society, which are also the same as the rules found in gambling confined to a small group of two or four people.
If we look into the term “gambling” from another angle, we find that the harm, which is brought about by this large-scale gambling is much worse than what is realized as gains by the older, and established forms of gambling, for its evil effects are far-reaching and spell out the ruin of a whole nation. As evident, the natural result of this practice will be that wealth belonging to the common persons of a middle class society will go on decreasing, and keep on enriching the capital of some capitalist who has dared to invest his money in a venture, which is sure to bring him safe returns by all means – selfish and foul – at his disposal. Inevitably, the entire wealth of the nation will shrink and get concentrated into the hands of a limited number of individuals and a limited

number of families. This can be witnessed everyday in the stock markets of the world and in other forms of Qimar.
Now, the Islamic economic strategy has an important principle of its own. It declares that every deal, which siphons off the wealth of a whole community out into the coffers of a few capitalists, is Haram, unlawful and forbidden. The Holy Qur’an while stating this principle of the distribution of wealth has proclaimed that the methods of earning employed in generating wealth are those in which the wealth does not shrink and concentrate in the hands of a few capitalists. It says, “…so that it may not circulate between the rich among you. Qur‟an, 59:7” (see Ma’ariful Qur’an)
In brief, gambling is clearly prohibited in Islam and the earning obtained by employing this method is also Haram.
The Practice of Gambling in the Muslim Community:
Nonetheless, it is also a surprising fact to note that this wicked, fraudulent, and inhuman means of making fast bucks has gained currency in the present day Muslim community, where it enjoys considerable popularity among the Muslims, who are far-removed from the teachings of Islam. Nowadays, we find that all forms of lottery, insurance policies, participating in betting in a competition in horse races and cricket matches, and a lot of other methods, which were unheard of in the past are making their appearance in the Muslim society. If we study the methods employed deeply – not just by merely touching it at the superficial level – then we find to our horror that all the methods that are employed by the new techniques are also included in gambling, and one cannot distinguish one from the other. And, all of them have crept into our society, making inroads into the Islamic way of life – both from within our community and by copying others who do not subscribe to the Islamic ethics in their lives. They show no signs of decreasing and are getting popular by the day. Many Muslims who are on the lookout for earning easy money get trapped into this hare-brained schemes and get involved in the wrong way of earning money and some have made it into a permanent form of earning their livelihood. A Muslim should abstain from Haram wealth and even from all those doubtful means, which he is not sure of, in all circumstances.

Nowadays, many new techniques of gambling, and other games of chance have been devised to deceive the Muslims about their legality in the Islamic Shariah, which we would clarify in this article.
One of the global schemes of interest is insurance scheme, which is actually a combination of interest and gambling or both, but nowadays many people are involved in this scheme and find the insurance method very attractive to hold on. They are quite unaware of what they may face on the Day of Resurrection, when they will have to justify all their actions on earth.
Technically speaking, insurance is a dealing in which some kind of security is offered by a certain person or a company as an immunization against future dangers or as a recompense for possible losses one may have to face in the forthcoming days. But, the condition of this offered security is that the concerned person will have to give a certain amount of money on installments for a particular period of time. If that person in that particular period suffers any danger with regard to his life, property and possessions the second party recompenses for them. However, if that person did not suffer any danger in that certain period, the given amount is refunded with its interest dues. Since offering interest on this amount from the insurance company or making recompenses is a dangerous deal, the insurance company or the organization championing its cause, makes up this loss by giving the same fund on interest to others and then all these things are made possible.
In short, insurance is a dealing, which begins with gambling and ends up being as an interest, which is a bargain, and a combination of both. In fact, insurance is an interest bargain, which resembles banking. They differ only in their outward ways but virtually they have no difference: the only difference that can be imagined in this is that this bargain in insurance is involved with deception about its legality in Islam along with interest.
After that, it is very relevant to clarify that numerous methods of insurance have been devised in our contemporary world: Life insurance, insurance of possessions, insurance of responsibilities, and medical insurance etc., to name a few. In all these methods of insurance the same fact is applicable. That is, they begin with gambling and end with interest or some of them involve only interest and the others involve both. For this reason, there is no doubt that this is kind of bargain is unlawful from an Islamic point of view. However, the insurance

scheme that is imposed by the government such as vehicle insurance etc., they may be considered to be lawful for they are not adopted on intention; rather they are forced on individuals. However, other schemes of insurance which people adopt are strictly unlawful for their dubious procedures involved in it.

Another form of gambling is lottery ticket, which has become very widespread nowadays and is played globally. This lottery is also unlawful for it is completely a kind of gambling in which one can win millions and lose millions at the same time.

One of the ways of gambling is dealing in closed packs as is common in exhibition places where closed packs are speculated about for a small price, some of which are empty while some others contain some valuable things while others have a thing of little value. Generally, people deal in these kinds of packets eagerly and speculate hoping that possibly they may come across a thing of higher value. Since this kind of dealing involves gambling and stakes, it cannot be allowed in Islam.
Dealings on Installments
One of the ways of gambling prevalent nowadays is dealing on installments. The method is that some people are registered as members who give a certain amount of fund every month, and are cast into lots. The lucky person in whose favor the lot is cast is given a particular thing, for example, a motorbike and he is absolved of giving any funds in the future once he has won his lot. In this way, every month this lot is cast and the lucky person is given the already decided thing. And, he in the future does not need to pay the installment amount that will be due on him every month.
This is also a kind of gambling for possibly a person may win a motorcycle for one thousand rupees, the other for two, the third for fifteen thousand while the forth for twenty thousand, and that is what is termed as gambling in the Shariah which fluctuates between benefit and loss. But, nowadays people are committing this prohibited act without being aware of its legality in the Islamic Shariah.

However, if the dealing is made on installment basis and repaying all the funds until the prescribed time, then this is lawful. And, in the same way, if a person has to give more than the original price of something in the installment procedure, for example he has to pay fifty-five thousand rupees for a vehicle which is actually worth fifty thousand rupees then it is also right in Islam.

One of the ways of earning Haram wealth is to commit a theft or robbery whose prohibition and unlawfulness is almost agreed upon by all religions of the world. Perhaps there is no one in the world who may approve of this kind of heinous act. The Holy Qur‟an has declared that the hand of a thief be cut as a punishment in this world. We read, “As for a man or woman who commits theft, cut off the hands of both to recompense them for what they earned a deterrent from Allah.” (5:38)
And the Holy Qur‟an has also stated: “And whoever misappropriates shall bring forth, on the Day of Resurrection, what he misappropriated. Then everybody shall be paid, in full, what he/she has earned. And they shall not be wronged.” (3:161)
In this verse of the Holy Qur‟an the word “Ghulool, misappropriation” has been mentioned which means “misuse of trust, or fraud”. In this verse, it has been proclaimed that the person committing fraud with regard to the war booty will appear on the Day of Resurrection with what he had stolen in this world.
Once the Prophet got up amongst and mentioned Al Ghulool, emphasized its magnitude and declared that it was a great sin saying, „Don‟t commit Ghulool for I should not like to see anyone amongst you on the Day of Resurrection, carrying over his neck a sheep that will be bleating, or carrying over his neck a horse that will be neighing. Such a man will be saying: „O Allah‟s Apostle! Intercede with Allah for me,‟ and I will reply, „I can‟t help you, for I have conveyed Allah‟s Message to you nor should I like to see a man carrying over his neck, a camel that will be grunting. Such a man will say, „O Allah‟s Apostle! Intercede with Allah for me, and I will say, „I can‟t help you for I have conveyed Allah‟s Message to you,‟ or one carrying over his neck gold and

silver and saying, „O Allah‟s Apostle! Intercede with Allah for me,‟ and I will say, „I can‟t help you for I have conveyed Allah‟s Message to you,‟ or one carrying clothes that will be fluttering, and the man will say, „O Allah‟s Apostle! Intercede with Allah for me.‟ And I will say, „I can‟t help you, for I have conveyed Allah‟s Message to you.” (Bukhari: 6145, Muslim: 4313, Abu Dawood: 2557)
Therefore, each kind of theft has been prohibited in Islam: even in a Hadeeth theft has been declared as contrary to faith. The Messenger of Allah said: “No fornicator can fornicate, while he fornicates, to be a Believer. No thief can steal, while he steals, to be a Believer. No drinker (of the wine) can drink, while he drinks, to be a Believer. And, none among you can plunder in a way that attracts the attention of the Believers, while he plunders, to be a Believer.” (Bukhari: 2295, Muslim: 86, Nasai: 4787, Ibn Majah: 3926)
In brief, committing theft and taking someone‟s property or possessions forcefully is Haram.
A Clarification
There is no doubt that all kinds of theft, burglary, and robbery are strongly discouraged in Islam. They fall under strictly prohibited category. However, it is better to clarify here that to steal the possession of a mosque, Madrasa or Waqf property is all the more serious. Maulana Mufti Muhammad Shafi says commenting about the verse “And whoever misappropriates shall bring forth, on the Day of Resurrection, what he misappropriated”, “The same rule applies to mosques, religious schools and institutions, Khanqahs and properties of Waqf (endowments) since they represent the contributions of millions of people. If an unfortunate person misappropriates, and was to go about seeking to be forgiven for his evil act, how could he possibly go to each one of those millions of people whom he has deceived? The same rule holds good for Public or Government Treasury because all citizens of a country have a right in it. One who steals from it steals from everyone. But the problem is that these very holdings are such that a single owner does not sit over them. The caretakers become negligent. Avenues of pilferage flourish. It is in these legal loopholes, which are left uncovered by the laws of the country, such money and properties are made and a lot of thefts and misappropriations become rampant all over the world with most people heedless to the evil end that awaits them in the

Hereafter by their deeds. They do not realize that this is a terrible burden to haul on their necks on the Day of Resurrection, not to speak of the punishment of Hell that is bound to come as a result of this crime. Then, last but not the least, comes the sad deprivation from the promised intercession of the Messenger of Allah. Let us all seek refuge from such a fate!” (Ma’ariful Qur’an, 2: 243)
Nowadays, many cases of embezzlements, thefts and abuse of trusts are seen in different levels with regard to the possessions or properties of religions institutions, Waqf organizations, mosques and Madrasas which are, in fact, a matter of disgrace for the Muslim community and a great hindrance to the welfare of the Muslim Ummah. Some Madrasa executives who are collecting funds under the guise of Islamic garbs are also found to be very careless in this regard. Many of them are obviously committing theft. It is a matter of great disgrace that such people start embezzling and misappropriating the possessions and properties of Islamic organizations and religious entities. On account of the bad reaction and nefarious activities of some Madrasa executives the dignity of Ulama and Madrasas and religious personalities has been seriously damaged and their respect, which they had earned the hard way, is almost erased from the minds of people. The general public has started to develop the idea that all the Madrasas are the same as the one that commits a fraud and stop donating their charities to it. They should avoid this activity.
In the same way, the robbery is also an extremely evil act. The Holy Qur‟an has declared a very severe punishment for those who commit robbery. It states, “Those who fight against Allah and His Messenger and run about trying to spread disorder in the earth, their punishment is nothing but that they shall be killed off or be crucified or their hands and legs be cut apart from different sides or they be kept away from the land (they live in). That is a humiliation for them in this world, and for them in the Hereafter there is a greater punishment.” (5:33)
The Commentators of the Holy Qur‟an have described that the phrase “… run about trying to spread disorder …” mentioned in the above verse denotes the robbers and dacoits. This verse elaborates on four kinds of punishment for such people, for such people cause four kinds of corruption and disorder in the society. First of all such people must be killed if they too have killed someone but not looted a property as the verse states “…shall be killed”.

However, if one has murdered and robbed someone, he shall be hanged which the verse “… be crucified” mentions.
And, if one has robbed someone but not murdered, then the punishment for him is that one‟s hands and legs should be cut off which the verse states “… their hands and legs be cut apart.”
And, if one intended robbery and went for the same purpose; but he was nabbed before he went ahead with his activity, then he shall be imprisoned or kept away from the place he lives in as the verse in the Holy Qur‟an “… be kept away from the land they live in” explains.
The above verse reveals how the robbers are going to be insulted in this world and Hereafter. And there is no need to affirm that the wealth earned through this way is Haram, which everyone is aware about according to laws that are laid out in the Islamic Shariah, which is based entirely on the teachings of the Holy Qur‟an and the Noble Traditions of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (saws).

It is absolutely forbidden in Islam to usurp the possessions of others, to snatch, or take away the belongings of other people, without their wholehearted permission. Whatever is gotten through this type of fraudulent way becomes totally Haram to be consumed for the person receiving it, even though, if one receives it by lodging a false prosecution against a person. The Holy Qur‟an has declared: “Surely, those who eat the property of the orphans unjustly, they only eat fire into their bellies, and soon they shall enter a blazing hell.” (4:10)
Moreover, there are countless teachings of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (saws) that emphatically discourage these types of usurping the rights of others and seize unjustly the possessions of others by forceful and fraudulent means.
The Prophet Muhammad (saws) has been reported to proclaim: “It is totally unlawful for a person to even take away the stick of his brother without his will and consent. That is because Allah has strongly forbidden the property of a Muslim for a Muslim (to be violated).” (Musnad Ahmad: 22500, Sunan Al-Baihaqi, 6:100)

In another Hadith he said, “The property of a Muslim man is not lawful for another without his glad permission.” (Sunan Al-Baihaqi, 6:100)
He has also summarized the most basic, wholesome, social ethics for Muslims to follow by observing: “Do not envy one another; do not inflate prices one to another; do not hate one another; do not turn away from one another; and do not undercut one another, but be you, O servants of Allah, brothers. A Muslim is the brother of a Muslim: he neither oppresses him nor does he fail him, and he neither holds him or other Muslims in contempt. Piety is right here-and he pointed to his breast three times. It is evil enough for a man to hold his brother Muslim in contempt. The whole of a Muslim for another Muslim is inviolable: his blood, his property, and his honor.” (Abu Dawood: 4238, Muslim: 4650, Tirmidhi: 1850, Musnad Ahmad)
The Companion Saeed Ibn Zaid (ra) reported that the Messenger of Allah said, “Whoever usurps even a span of plot wrongly, it will be tied to his neck with the seven earths on the Day of Resurrection.” (Bukhari: 4650, Muslim: 3023)
And, Abdullah Ibn Umar (ra) narrated that the Messenger of Allah (saws) said: “Whoever usurps any of the plot (owned by someone) oppressively, he will be made to be swallowed by the earth to its seven degrees on the Day of Resurrection.” (Bukhari: 2957)
We have already mentioned the saying of the Prophet (saws) in the previous chapter: “None among you can plunder in a way that attracts the attention of the people, while he plunders, to be a Believer. Nobody from among you can commit fraud, while he commits fraud, to be a Believer!”
Wail Ibn Hujr narrated that the Messenger of Allah (saws) said, “Whoever usurps the land of a person, he will meet Allah while He would be annoyed with him.” (Al-Mujam Al-Kabeer, 22:18)

The above Ahadeeth have made it quite obvious that it is absolutely forbidden to take something owned by a Muslim without his wholehearted permission. For this reason the excessive demands and forceful ways to obtain a huge dowry

from the parents of a girl who are eager to see their daughter married into a good family would also be clearly prohibited. The reason is that mostly the people are not well-pleased, agreeable with the forceful demands, or they are partially glad that their daughter is getting married, but partially unhappy with the dowry deal, which is unjustly demanded from them at the last moment. But, it is a sad phenomenon that the guardians of the boys make a long list before marriage, which is sent to the girl‟s guardians. If all the listed demands are not completely fulfilled the guardians of the bridegrooms go berserk, and long dispute arises between the two parties. How could such a cruel attitude be permitted in Islam, which totally discourages its followers to force someone to give in to paltry demand and cruel practices, which are clearly forbidden in the Islamic Shariah?
At the same time it also must be borne in mind that obtaining such things in this way is like begging. No doubt it is a terribly disgraceful behavior on part of the Muslim bridegroom that he should forcefully demand for excessive materials from the guardians of the bride. The Messenger of Allah has said as reported by Anas Ibn Malik: “Whoever marries a girl only on the basis of her fame, Allah will not increase him in any aspect but disrepute; and whoever marries her on the basis of her wealth, Allah will not increase him in any aspect but in penury; and whoever marries her on the basis of her family status, Allah will not increase him in any way but in meanness and whoever marries a girl only to lower his gaze, protect his private parts, and maintain ties, Allah will bless the marriage for him and her both.” (Al-Mujam Al-Awsat, Tabrani, 3:21)

When it has become clear from these Prophetic Traditions that it is prohibited to take away the rights of others wrongfully, it also makes it obvious that it is quite an abominable act in the Islamic Shariah to deprive the right candidates of their dues in the inheritance. Today this practice has reached endemic proportions and it is ever increasing in alarming degrees. Many rightful members of the family are wrongly barred from receiving their part of the inherited property. In some cases, some people who are not the actual inheritors seize the property of those who stand as the legal heirs. In other cases, the sisters and female family members are deprived of their due portion of inheritance, whereas, the brothers

divide the whole property among themselves. Such things are quite unapproved and highly discouraged in Islam.
It is stated in a Hadeeth that the Messenger of Allah (saws) said, “Whoever cuts someone off his portion of inheritance prescribed by Allah Almighty, He will cut him off his inheritance in Paradise.” (Shuabul Iman, 6:224, Sunan Saeed Ibn Mansoor, 1:96)
Another report attributes the following words to the Holy Prophet (saws), “Whoever nullifies the inheritance of someone for whom Allah has made it legal in His Book, Allah will nullify his inheritance in the Paradise.” (Musannaf Ibn Abi Shaibah, 6:240)
Usurping Someone’s Property by a False Oath and Prosecution
Wail Ibn Hujr narrated that a person from Hadhramut and another from Kindah came to the Messenger of Allah (saws). The person hailing from Hadhramut said, “O Messenger of Allah, this man has wrongly taken my land.” The person hailing from Kindah replied, “This land belongs to me, in which, I am doing farming. He has no right in it.” The Messenger of Allah (saws) asked the man from Hadhramut, “Do you have any witness (for your claim)?” He answered in the negative. On this the Messenger of Allah observed, “The second party (the man from Kindah) will be made to take an oath in this case.” The man from Hadhramut commented, “O Messenger of Allah, this is a wicked man, unmindful of what will he take an oath about.” The Messenger of Allah (saws) observed, “There is no other alternative except for this.” Then that person (from Kindah) took his oath, and turned away. The Prophet (saws) then observed, “If he has taken an oath about his property in order to eat of it wrongly, he will meet Allah in a state that He will not care for him.” (Muslim: 199, Tirmidhi: 1260, Abu Dawood: 2824)
Yet, another Hadeeth states that the Prophet (saws) said, “You bring your disputes (or cases) to me. May be one of you is more eloquent with his case than the other. I am just a human (like you) and I decide on the basis of what I hear from him. Should I decide anything from what is the right of his brother (opponent), it will be a plot of Hell for him on the Day of Judgment. So, he must not take it.” (Bukhari: 6452, Muslim: 3231)

All these reports go to prove that nothing could be Halal by taking something forcefully from anyone. Even if someone wins the case by prosecutions in the court by showing forged documents, that thing could not be lawful for him if he has taken it wrongfully.
The second fundamental principle to be noted here is that in all fields of business, employment, manufacturing and production one should first make sure that whatever he is involved in is completely in conformity with the Islamic Shariah. If that particular product or material through which the business or employment is managed is prohibited in Islam, then that business will not be allowed in Islam. And the income accruing through such means would not be counted as Halal. For example every Muslim knows that liquor and interest are prohibited in Islam, so dealing in such products and materials too would be considered Haram, and thus the income derived from it for consumption will also be a foul one.
The Companion, Jabir Ibn Abdullah (ra) narrated that the Messenger of Allah said at the time of the victory of Makkah, “Allah and his Messenger have forbidden dealing in wine, dead animals, swine, and idols.” He was asked, “What about the fat of the dead animals?” He answered, “It is also prohibited.” Then he observed, “May Allah destroy the Jews who started to take the price of the dead animals after melting it whereas Allah had made it forbidden for them.” (Bukhari: 2121, Muslim: 1581)
This Hadeeth confirms that dealing in wine and other intoxicants is forbidden along with the things listed above in the Hadeeth. In another Hadeeth the Holy Prophet Muhammad (saws) says, “It is forbidden to eat of the price of a dog, the earning of a prostitute, and the price of wine.” (Sunan Ad-Darqutni, 3:7, Musnad At-Tayalisi, 1: 360 Ahmad: 3345)
Abu Umamah narrated that the Messenger of Allah (saws) said, “Allah has clearly forbidden singing, this career, and its price, and training to others and listening to it.” (Dhammul Malahi: 72, Kanz al-Ummal: 9390)
All these narrations in common indicate to the fact that everything that is prohibited its income too becomes unlawful. In the same way getting employed in Haram-dealing businesses too, is unlawful.

Abu Hurairah narrated that the Messenger of Allah (saws) said, “The price of a dog, the earning of a prostitute, and the money given to a soothsayer are all forbidden.” (Nasai: 4219, Abu Dawud: 3023)
It is reported that once a person came to Ibn Abbas (ra) and said, “I am a person who has no other alternative for earning except for craftsmanship. I produce these images.” Ibn Abbas said, “I will teach you what I have heard from the Messenger of Allah. I have heard him say, “Whoever creates images, Allah will punish him until he will be asked to breathe life into that image, which he could never do”. Hearing all this that person began to pant, and his face turned pale. Ibn Abbas said, “Damn you, if you have no option, then make images of those things that are not living beings.” (Bukhari: 2073, Ahmad: 3220)
Abu Hurairah (ra) narrated that the Messenger of Allah (saws) has forbidden from the income of cupper, price of a dog, flute (music) and the wage (of male animals) raised for impregnating other (female) animals.” (Musnad Ishaq 1: 188)
The Companion Anas said, “The worst income is that of flute (music).” (Dhamm Al-Malahi: 78)
A reflection over these a Hadeeth tells us that since creating images of living things is prohibited in Islam, it would not be lawful to make it into a business. However, creating images of non-living things is lawful. Therefore, it is permissible to make it a business and consume the income accruing through it. In the same way, it is prohibited in Islam to sing, play music etc. therefore the income made through this means too has been declared as unlawful
The third important point to remember here is that while dealing in transactions one should not cheat others, for cheating is a very serious crime in Islam. The prophet said, “The person who cheats is not of us.”
All types of deceptions are forbidden whether by displaying a better material and then giving a bad one, or by taking a false oath, adulterating, concealing the defects, or imbalance in the measure and weight.

We have given below some of the teachings of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (saws) in this regard:
Abu Hurairah (ra) narrated that the Messenger of Allah said, “Once the Messenger of Allah passed a load of grain and placed his fingers into it. He felt dampness in it.” He said to the man, “O owner of this grain, what is this?” He said that it was dampened by rainwater. He observed, “Then why did you not keep this dampened grain above the load so that people could easily see it? Whoever cheats is not of us.” (At-Targhib wa At-Tarhib, 2:574)
Abdullah Ibn Umar too has reported something to this effect. He says that once the Holy Prophet Muhammad (saws) passed a load of grain, which was placed beautifully arranged. He put his hand in it and found that there was some defective material inside. He advised him, “Keep this defective and the better one separately for sale, for whoever cheats is not of us.” (Musnad Ahmad: 5113, Al-Mujam Al-Awsat, 3:63, At-Targhib wa At-Tarhib, 2:572)
Qais Ibn Abi Gharzah narrates that once the Holy Prophet Muhammad (saws) happened to pass by a grain seller. He said to him, “O grain seller is that which is inside is just like that which is outside?” He said, “Yes, O Messenger of Allah.” He then observed, “The person who cheats Muslims is not of them.” (Musnad Abu Yala: 2: 233, Al-Mujam Al-Kabeer, 18:359)

Abu Dharr Al-Ghifari narrated that the Holy Prophet Muhammad (saws) said, “Allah would not look mercifully upon three types of people on the Day of Judgment, and neither would He purify them from their sins. And they will be inflicted with the severest punishment.” Abu Dharr (ra) asked him, “Who are they?” He answered, “The one who lets his loin cloth descend his ankle, the one who brags about his favors, and the one who runs his business by false oaths.” (Muslim: 154, Tirmidhi: 1132, Nasai: 2516, Abu Dawud: 3565)
And, Abu Hurairah (ra) narrated that the Hoy Prophet Muhammad (saws) said, “Taking a (false) oath runs the business but mars the benefits.” (Bukhari: 1945, Muslim: 3014, Nasai: 4385)

The Messenger of Allah (saws) has also said, “Do not mix water in the milk for sale.” He further said, “There was a person in earlier times that brought grape juice to a village for sale which was mixed with a great amount of water. In this way he sold it. Then he bought a monkey, and set out on his journey back to home on a boat. When the boat arrived in the middle of the sea, the monkey was moved by Allah, the Almighty to take away the wallet of the salesman. It then jumped over a board of the boat, opened the wallet, throwing one dinar in the sea and another in the boat, while he gaped at it, until it lessened to the half amount.” (Shuab Al-Iman, 4:333, At-Targhib wa At-Tarhib, 2:573)
The Hadeeth tells us that the Haram wealth that he had obtained by deception was thrown in the sea by an animal under the order of Allah almighty, while the Halal was safely sent to him. The moral of this true story is that we should shun deceptive ways for making fast bucks otherwise our ill-gotten wealth would be made useless by God in a mysterious manner.
Another report goes that once while Abu Hurairah (ra) was passing Harrah (a place in Arabia), he came across a man who was going to sell milk. When he came to know that he had adulterated the milk, he asked him, “What about you, when you will be asked on the Day of Judgment to separate the water from the milk?” (Shuab Al-Iman, 4:333, At-Targhib wa At-Tarhib, 2:573)
Concealing the defects of materials that have been set up for purchase:
Wathilah Ibn Asqa has narrated that he heard the Messenger of Allah (saws) say, “It is not lawful for a person to sell something without describing it fully (i.e. its defects, if any). It is not lawful to conceal it if he already knows it.” (Musnad Ahmad: 16056, Hakim, 2:12, Sunan Baihaqi, 5:320)
Uqbah Ibn Amir (ra) narrated that the Holy Prophet said, “A Muslim is a brother to another Muslim. It is not lawful for a Muslim to sell something defective to his brother without describing it.” (Hakim, 2:10, Sunan Al-Baihaqi, 5:320)

Wathilah Ibn Asqa has reported yet another Hadeeth with the words of the Messenger of Allah (saws) who said, “Whoever sold a defective material to someone without explaining it remains in the anger of Allah, and the angels continuously keep cursing him.” (Ibn Majah: 2247, Al-Mujam Al-Kabeer, 22:65, Musnad Ash-Shamiyyeen, 2:369)

Committing frauds in measurements and weights has been clearly mentioned in the Holy Qur‟an as a great vice and wickedness. Allah, the Almighty says, “Woe to the curtailers who, when they measure something to receive from people, take it in full, and when they measure or weigh something to give it to them, give less than due. Do they not think that they have to be raised up on a Great Day, the Day when all the people will stand before the Lord of the worlds?” (Al-Qur’an, 83:1-6)
The great commentator Ibn Abbas (ra) said explaining the background of the verses, “When the Holy Prophet arrived in Madinah, the people of Madinah whose transactions were almost based on measurements used to cheat and give short measure. For this reason Allah revealed, this Surah.” (Lubab An-Nuqool: 228, Tafseer Tabari, 30:91)
This verse explains that cheating in weight and measure is a great sin. This fact has been highlighted in the Holy Qur‟an at several places.
“And give the measure and the weight to the full in all fairness.” (Al-Qur’an, 6:152)
“And give full measure when you measure, and weigh with a straight balance. That is good and better in the end.” (Al-Qur’an, 17:35)
And He also said, “And do not lessen the measure and the weight. I see you quite well-off, and I fear for you the punishment of an encircling day. And O my people, perfect the measure and the balance with justice and do not make the people short of their things, and do not go about the earth spreading disorder.” (Al-Qur’an, 11:84-85)

Abdullah Ibn Umar reports that the Holy Prophet (saws) once gave a sermon in which he said, “O Emigrants, I seek the refuge of Allah Almighty against five traits of character lest they should grow into you: firstly, against immodesty, for when immodesty prevails in a people they are hit by plagues, epidemics and ever-new diseases not even heard of by their elders; and secondly, against cheating in weights and measures, for when this disease grips a people, they are hit by famine, price-hikes, rigorous labor and over-work and oppressive rulers; and thirdly, against non-payment of Zakah, for when people do not pay Zakah, rains are stopped; and fourthly, against the religious apathy of people, for when a community breaks its covenant with Allah and His Messenger, then Allah Almighty makes alien enemies sit over them who snatch away what belongs to them without any justification; and fifthly, against the apathy of ruling authority, for when the rulers of a people fail to decide matters in accordance with the Book of Allah because the injunctions revealed by Allah Almighty do not suit their fancies, then Allah Almighty causes mutual hatred and disputations descend upon them.” (Hakim, Ibn Majah, Baihaqi)
While, mentioning a number of evils, the Messenger of Allah has mentioned that when a person or a group of people cheat others in weights and measures, they are more likely to be engulfed by drought, poverty, and ruled by tyrant kings. This explains that it is Haram to cheat others by making fraudulent weights and measures, and such things invite Divine punishment in this world, while the torment in the next world is something most assuredly inflicted on deserving human beings.
The main purpose of highlighting these evils is that no Muslim should ever try to make money or earn income through a fraudulent or a wrong way.
If these simple guidelines are really followed by people then it is hoped that once a person materializes them in his daily business and personal life he would become able to look for only Halal ways of earning and refrain from those that are dubious ones.
Furthermore, a Muslim must familiarize himself with the injunctions and commandments that govern the economy in the Religion of Islam, which are fully detailed in Hadeeth books along with the fundamental principles that are mentioned by Islamic jurists. Sometimes many people get involved in a wrong

business or earning a way of income thinking it to be a Halal, while the Islamic Shariah declares it to be a Haram business. In this way he commits a sinful act.

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