Is it a sin to watch the lunar eclipse?

Is it a sin to watch the lunar eclipse?
If it is a sin, what if the person did not know that it was a sin to do so?

 In the name of Allah, the most beneficent , the most merciful.

 Answer

Solar and lunar eclipses are reminders of the Day of Judgment, when the sun, moon, and stars will lose their light. Allah (SWT) says in the Quran “When the sight is dazed (by fear), and the moon is eclipsed, and the sun and moon are united: On that day man will say, ‘Where is the refuge?”(Al-Qiyamah: 7-10)

It is narrated by Qabisah al-Hilali that there was an eclipse of the sun in the time of The Prophet . He came out bewildered pulling his garment, and I was in his company at Medina. He prayed two rakahs and stood for a long time in them. He then departed and the sun became bright. He then said, “There are the signs by means of which Allah, the Exalted, produces dread (in His servants). When you see anything of this nature, then pray as you are praying a fresh obligatory prayer.” (Sunan Abu-Dawood. 456)

Aisha (RA) narrates that The Prophet  said “The sun and the moon are two signs of Allah; they are not eclipsed on account of anyone’s death or on account of anyone’s birth. So when you see them, glorify and supplicate Allah, observe prayer, give alms. O Ummah of Muhammad, none is more indignant than Allah when His servant or maid commits fornication. O people of Muhammad, by Allah, if you knew what I know, you would weep much and laugh little. (Sahih Muslim, 444)

From the above Ayahs and Ahadiths it is clear that on the occasion of an eclipse an individual should be engaged in the remembrance of Allah and performing good deeds, as this was the action of Allah’s beloved prophet. However if the person due to his ignorance did not follow the teaching of Allah (SWT) and his Prophet  and carried out actions contrary to these, then he/she should repent to Allah (SWT) and make a firm intention not to indulge in these acts in the future.

Allah knows best

Sayeedur Rahman

Darul Ifta, Birmingham

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