Tuesday, 6 May 2008

The Issue Of Halal Meat 1

The issue of halal meat is one of importance in Islam, however in recent times with the advent of modernisation Muslims have gone away from tradition methods of slaughtering. This has now caused much confusion, with differing opinions as to what is considered halal meat.

When there is confusion on any Islamic matter, we should always refer back to Allah and His Messenger, as Allah (swt) says,

(And) if you differ in anything amongst yourselves, refer it to Allah and His Messenger

[Surah An Nisa’ 4:59]

There are numerous verses (ayaat) and prophetic narrations (ahadith) commanding Muslims to eat that which is lawful (halal) and to leave that which is unlawful (haram).

Allah (swt) says in the Qur'an

They ask you (O Muhammad SAW) what is lawful for them (as food). Say: "Lawful unto you are At-Tayyibaat (all kind of Halal foods) [Surah Al Maidah 5:4]

The Messenger (saw) said:

“That which is lawful is clear and that which is unlawful is clear” [Sahih Muslim] #4178

So it is common knowledge that Muslims only eat or drink that which is halal, to the point even the disbelievers (kuffar) have come to know that alcohol and pork is prohibited for a Muslim. As this is one of the topics known by necessity;

Many food types are halal in their original state such as fruits, vegetables, and sea food, other food type such as meat from chicken, sheep or cattle are only lawful if killed or slaughtered in the right manner.

Halal mean lawful in Arabic, and used to describe objects rather than an action. Normally when describing an action that is allowed we would say it is obligatory (fard/wajib), recommended (mandoub) or permissible (mubah).

Haram means prohibited or unlawful, this term is both used for objects as well as actions. When describing an action that is not allowed we would say it is prohibited (haram) or disliked (makrouh)

ذبح ) The meaning of the word ‘dhabh’ can be found in Bukhari Dhabh (

This method is used for birds, cattle, sheep and goats, whereby the animal is laid down on its right side and the blood carrying veins are cut.

نحر Nahr () This method of is used for slaughtering camels and is done by cutting the carotid arteries at the root of the camels neck. The camel’s front legs are bent at the knee and thereafter tied.

`The practice of slaughtering in Islam has always been to apply a sharp blade to the neck of the animal.

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