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Shaykh Ṣāliḥ al-Suḥaymī on the Impermissibility of Muslims Celebrating Valentine’s Day

Translated by Abū al-Ḥasan Mālik Ādam al-Akhḍar

Questioner:

“Indeed tomorrow corresponds with the fourteenth of February which is recognized as Valentine’s Day in the West, and some of our young men and women have been tempted by this holiday. So do you have a word of advice concerning this?”

Shaykh Ṣāliḥ al-Suḥaymī (hafidhahullaah):

“This was the topic of last Friday’s khutbah (sermon), and perhaps someone from the students of knowledge recorded it, and I do believe that it was recorded in Masjid Amīr Ṣultān. I elaborated on this in detail. In brief, I mentioned that this Valentine’s Day contains seven objects of caution.

First: Its origin goes back to the Romans; it was originally called Cupid’s (Roman god of love) Day; so recognizing it is recognition of idolatry because it is imitation of the idolaters.

Second: It is blind following of the Jews and Christians, and the Messenger of Allāh (Sallallaahu alaihi wa sallam) informed us of this, ‘You will follow the ways of those who came before you…’ it was said, ‘The Jews and Christians?’ He said, ‘And what other nation [could I mean] besides those?’[2] and in another wording, ‘The Persians and the Romans.’[3]

Third: It is imitation of the disbelievers in general. The Messenger of Allāh (Sallallaahu alaihi wa sallam) stated, ‘Whoever imitates a people, he is from them.’[4]

Fourth: It is an innovation that has been newly introduced by the people, and whoever innovates in this affair of ours that which is not from it, it is rejected.[5]

Fifth: It is an abomination, and everything that takes place in its observance is an abomination from the meeting up of young men and women, the correspondence that takes place between them, the sending of heart-shaped Valentine’s and what is similar to this of nonsense. All of this is imitation of the West, and we have been prohibited from imitating [the disbelieving people].

Sixth: Even those who are sensible among them (i.e. the disbelievers) have prohibited celebrating this holiday, until—I believe I heard that the Vatican, the distorted Christian Church, is stern in their prohibition of this matter.

Last: It is based upon a great myth—concerning what is called love and what it leads to from corruption. So love, in their view, is merely fornication and what leads to it. Thus, it is upon us to be wary of imitating these disbelieving people. I believe this answer is adequate, and as I have previously mentioned, I have elaborated on this in the khutbah (Friday sermon). So we will suffice with this, and I commend you [to Allah’s protection] until tomorrow’s lesson. May the prayers and peace be upon the our Prophet Muhammad (Sallallaahu alaihi wa sallam), his family and companions.”

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Question: Some people celebrate Valentine’s Day on February 14 by exchanging red roses, dressing in red, and congratulating one another on that day. Some cake shops make heart-shaped cakes in red and draw hearts on them and other shops advertise special items on sale for this day. What is your opinion on:

  1. First: Celebrating this day?
  2. Second: Buying from these stores on this day?
  3. Third: Shop owners who do not celebrate this day selling gifts to those who do celebrate it?

May Allah reward you with the best.

Answer:  The clear-cut evidence from the Qur’an and Sunnah, upon which the Salaf (righteous predecessors) of this Ummah (nation based on one creed) of this Ummah unanimously agree, confirms that there are only two ‘Eids (festivals) in Islam: ‘Eid-ul-Fitr (the Festival of Breaking the Fast) and ‘Eid-ul-Adha (the Festival of the Sacrifice). Any other festival, whether peculiar to a person, a group, an event or stands for any meaning whatever, is an invented festival that is not permissible for Muslims to celebrate, approve of, enjoy, or support in any way, because this is considered to be a transgression of the Boundaries of Allah. Anyone who transgresses the boundaries set by Allah has wronged themselves. If we add to this fabricated festival the fact that it is one of the festivals of the Kafirs (disbelievers), this heaps sin upon sin, because it entails imitating them and is a type of support of them. Allah (Glorified be He) forbids the Mu’mins (believers), in His Ever-Glorious Book, from imitating or supporting the Kuffar (disbelievers). (more…)

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Translated by Abū al-Ḥasan Mālik Ādam al-Akhḍar

Questioner:

“Indeed tomorrow corresponds with the fourteenth of February which is recognized as Valentine’s Day in the West, and some of our young men and women have been tempted by this holiday. So do you have a word of advice concerning this?”

Shaykh Ṣāliḥ al-Suḥaymī (hafidhahullaah):

“This was the topic of last Friday’s khutbah (sermon), and perhaps someone from the students of knowledge recorded it, and I do believe that it was recorded in Masjid Amīr Ṣultān. I elaborated on this in detail. In brief, I mentioned that this Valentine’s Day contains seven objects of caution.

First: Its origin goes back to the Romans; it was originally called Cupid’s (Roman god of love) Day; so recognizing it is recognition of idolatry because it is imitation of the idolaters. (more…)

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