Haram (Maliki)


What is haram in islam? What does haram mean?

Haram is the opposite of halal, and it means something that has been explicitly prohibited by Islam. Examples are; drinking alcohol, gambling, theft, lying and adultery.

Things that have been deemed unlawful or haram in Islam are not to create a constant restriction for people, but in fact Allah has protected us with these laws. What is ugly and harmful has been prohibited, and what is beneficial has been allowed. Also, every haram has a halal alternative.

Everything, in its essence is lawful, however few things are unlawful. Thus, Islam has decreed some things unlawful for our own benefit, and placed restrictions regarding them. However in crucial times (fear of life etc), the legislation of unlawfulness may be temporarily violated until normal order is regained.

Neglecting fard obligations (such as five daily prayers, fasting during Ramadan) is also haram. A true and sincere Muslim, is one that follows Islam’s principles wherever he or she may be, and presents the best example of Islam.

Only Allah can deem a certain thing haram or halal, and the Prophet’s ahadith are a part of Allah’s decree.

Types of Haram

There are two types of haram things:

a-Haram li’aynihi (lizatihi)

Things that have been clearly forbidden by Allah and the Messenger. Their prohibition is explicitly mentioned in the Qur’an and Sunnah, their abstinence has been commanded, and they are generally things that harm one’s mind, property, life and lineage. Examples are; murder, gambling, drinking alcohol, extra-marital affairs, stealing, eating unlawful meat and marrying a milk-sibling.

b-Haram lighayrihi

Things that are halal in their essence, however have become haram due to an external factor. For example; a sheep slaughtered purposely without mentioning Allah’s name; the meat of this sheep is haram. The unlawfulness of this sheep’s meat is not due to the sheep itself, however the act of not reciting the Basmala before slaughtering it. That is what has made it haram (to eat), the meat of sheep is not unlawful on its own.

The ruling for Haram

Saying that a haram thing is halal, is blasphemy. It leads to kufr.

It is a major sin to commit a haram act and will result in punishment in the hereafter. A person who avoids haram shall be rewarded.

Source: Fiqh1 (According To The Maliki School Of Islamic Law), Erkam Publications

The Contents of Fiqh as a Science (Maliki)

The Importance of The Science of Fiqh (Shafii)