What is the ruling on letting the

Q: What is the ruling on shaving a beard entirely or partly?


A: All Praise be to Allah Alone and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger, his family and Companions. Shaving the beard is Haram (prohibited) according to what is related in the clear Sahih (authentic) Hadith (Part No. 5; Page No. 134) and traditions and general texts that prohibit imitation of the Kafir (disbelievers). Among those Hadith is one related by Ibn `Umar who reported that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said, "Differ from the Mushriks (those who associate others with Allah in His Divinity or worship); keep beards and cut moustaches short." Another narration states: "Cut moustaches short and let beards grow." There are also many other Hadith with the same meaning. Keeping a beard means leaving it in its natural state, letting it grow, retaining it, and letting it become abundant, neither shaving it, plucking it, nor trimming any part of it. Ibn Hazm said that it was Ijma` (consensus) that trimming the moustache and letting the beard grow is obligatory, supporting his view with a number of Hadith. Among them was the Hadith reported by Ibn `Umar (may Allah be pleased with them) that we just quoted and the Hadith reported by Zayd ibn Arqam who said that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said, "Anyone who does not remove any of his moustache is not one of us." The Hadith was ranked as Sahih (a Hadith that has been transmitted by people known for their uprightness and exactitude; free from eccentricity and blemish) by Al-Tirmidhy. The author of Al-Furu` stated, "The structure of this Hadith according to our School of Fiqh - the Hanbaly School - indicates it is Haram (prohibited)." Shaykh Al-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah (may Allah be merciful to him) said, "Based on the Qur'an, Sunnah, and Ijma`, differing from Kafir is enjoined. It is prohibited to imitate them altogether, as imitating their outward appearance can lead to imitation of their conduct and reprehensible deeds, or even their `Aqidahs (creeds). It leads to inner love and loyalty, and inner love leads to imitation of outward appearances." It is also recorded by Al-Tirmidhy that the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said, "Anyone who imitates other than us is not one of us. Do not imitate the Jews or the Christians..." Another narration of the Hadith has this wording: "Anyone who imitates a people is one of them." Related by Imam Ahmad. `Umar ibn Al-Khattab refuted the testimony of those who pluck their beards. Imam (Part No. 5; Page No. 135)  Ibn `Abdul-Bar stated in his book Al-Tamhid, "It is Haram to shave the beard; it is only done by effeminate men, meaning those imitating women." Also, The Prophet (peace be upon him) had a very hairy beard. Related by Muslim on the authority of Jabir. Another narration describes him as having: A thick beard. And another as having: A bushy beard. The meaning of them all is the same and it is not permissible to remove any of the beard, due to the general evidence prohibiting it.May Allah grant us success. May peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family, and Companions.

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