Fatwa ID: 05922
Answered by: Maulana Burhaan Rahman
It is a well-known Sunnah to accept gifts and to accept the invitations of the meal and eat the meal to comfort the one who is invited. But it is a common saying among our people that one is better when he offers food while the second looks good rejecting the food.
1) Is this against Sunnah? And someone saying such statements will become Kafir?
2) What if someone makes fun of pumpkin (kadoo) as is common in our people to call a lazy and dull person a pumpkin (kadoo) does it will make him a kafir? Or similarly making fun of milk or dates or honey as they were loved by Prophet. Will making funny statements make one a kafir?
In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful
1) Many nations have different phrases that they say and as long as it doesn’t go against Sharee’ah, it is fine to say. Like in the UK we say things like “a blessing in disguise” or “the early bird catches the early worm” and the list goes on. These `sayings` don’t hold any weight towards sin as there’s no contradiction in the religion in this just like your statement above.
Saying something is “against Sunnah” is very vague. Regarding this specific topic that we are on, whilst joking one should not lie/abuse others and one should not contradict Islam with his jokes. Joking around is aloud within its limits, if it is done in this way, it doesn’t go against the Sunnah.
Allah mentions in the Qur’an:
وَلَئِن سَأَلْتَهُمْ لَيَقُولُنَّ إِنَّمَا كُنَّا نَخُوضُ وَنَلْعَبُ قُلْ أَبِاللّهِ وَآيَاتِهِ وَرَسُولِهِ كُنتُمْ تَسْتَهْزِؤُونَ لا تَعْتَذِرُواْ قَدْ كَفَرْتُم بَعْدَ إِيمَانِكُمْ
“If you ask them they declare: ‘We were only talking idly and joking.’ Say: ‘Was it at Allah, and His Aayaat (proofs, evidence, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.) and His Messenger that you were mocking?’ Make no excuse; you disbelieved after you had believed” [Surah Tawbah, verse 65 and 66]
Our beloved Prophet SAW has mentioned
وَيْلٌ لِلَّذِي يُحَدِّثُ فَيَكْذِبُ لِيُضْحِكَ بِهِ الْقَوْمَ وَيْلٌ لَهُ وَيْلٌ لَهُ
“Woe to one who tells lies to make people laugh. Woe to him! Woe to him!” [Sunan Abi Dawud Hadeeth no: 4990]
Our Prophet used to joke around within limits:
عَنْ أَبِي هُرَيْرَةَ قَالَ قَالُوا يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ إِنَّكَ تُدَاعِبُنَا قَالَ صلى الله عليه وسلم إِنِّي لَا أَقُولُ إِلَّا حَقًّا
Abu Huraira reported: It was said, “O Messenger of Allah, do you joke with us?” The Messenger of Allah, peace, and blessings be upon him, said, “Verily, I do not say anything but the truth.” [Tirmidhi Hadeeth no: 1990]
2) With regards to little nicknames or joke phrases we say to each other, it is fine as long as we know we are not offending each other.
In the Qur’an it mentions:
وَلاَ تَنَابَزُواْ بِالاٌّلْقَـبِ
Do not ‘revile’ (offending someone) one another with nicknames. [Surah Hujrat verse 11]
Ibn Katheer writes in explanation of this part of the verse:
يجب أن لا تخاطب الشعب بأسماء يكرهها
“This verse means that you should not address people by nicknames that people dislike.”
As long as it is within the limits it is fine. An example can be that our beloved Prophet addressed Ali (RA) when he had dust on his face:
قُمْ أَبَا التُّرَابِ قُمْ أَبَا التُّرَابِ
Get up, face full of dust. Get up, face full of dust. [Muslim Hadeeth no: 2409]
Only Allah knows best.
Written by Maulana Burhaan Rahman
Checked and approved by Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah
Darul Ifta Birmingham