Beards in Islam

I felt I should share some valuable insights into Beard in Islam. At the end, you will find a quote from a different page of my blog (Itekaaf series). I do not intend any disrespect to my brothers.

The complete material may take about 30-40 minutes and it will be,
insha Allah, worth it.

Excerpts from my previous blog post:

Beards: I found too many senior citizens of 60-80 years with clean-shaven faces. I remember seeing the dead body of an elderly person in the funeral prayers held in the masjid last year. I lined up along with others to see him.When I saw his face which was clean-shaven , I thought I should not leave this world without a beard. How will we face Allah and His angels. Allah’s Messengers wore beards. Shariah says one should not imitate the other gender in dress and physical make up. Men should not imitate women and vice-versa. A scholar from Safa Baitul Maal addressed the gathering in the first week of Ramadan and said one commits minor and major sins in a second e.g.: lying, getting angry, hurting someone etc., and can seek Allah’s forgiveness. But shaving off beard is a 24/7 sin which is to be avoided.

I met this elderly gentleman by the name Jamal saheb of Guntur district who is 92 years old. Jamal saheb is of the same age of my dad, if he were to be alive. He is a regular at prayers and Mashallah, he prays standing up. He speaks only Telugu. He cannot fast these days. He wears a beard. One day, I asked him how he started a beard and at what age. He said he wore a beard for the first time at the age of 30 when he was accosted by an elderly person in the masjid. He told him something to the effect “You are regular in your prayers but you don’t wear a beard. It is good for you and Shaytan will keep away from you. It will help you control yourself from committing sins. People will treat you with respect.” This elderly gent held on to Jamal saheb’s hands for almost one hour till Jamal saheb agreed to start a beard. Jamal saheb said in Telugu as under. “Gaddam penchina tarwata, manakey chedda panulu cheyataniki siggu wastundi. Bhaya padatamu. Emayina tappudu panulu chestey, janalu antaru “Budhi leda neeku, gaddam penchukuni kuda elati panulu chestawa?” (After growing a beard, we will feel ashamed to commit sins. If you do any wrong things, people will say “Have you got no sense, you are doing such things even after growing a beard.”) Jamal saheb says one has better self-control after growing a beard. I liked his point of view. I laughed a lot when he said budhi leda neeku. I repeat this sometimes to Jamal saheb as a joke and he also laughs.

Jamal saheb.jpg

Jamal saheb near Foodworld

I accosted a dozen elderly people who are retired or on the verge of retirement and advised them to grow a beard. All of them listened. Some promised to do it. I found four people have successfully grown beards during Ramadan and are continuing. I found strange responses from some people. A guy said he was warned by his daughter (a teenager attending a girl’s madarsa) that he need not come to the madarsa to pick her up for the weekend without a beard!!


Weddings & Wedding etiquette


Married couple

I found this book ( Marriage- Making it and living it) very thought-provoking and readable. One can browse through slowly as there is lot of material to cover. It is worth it.

Marriage – Making it and living it

Etiquette of marriage is an important book, specially for about-to-be married people. It has authentic Hadith to communicate. It was surprising to receive feedback from senior married couples saying they didn’t know quite a few things relating to this subject! I email this booklet to the groom whenever I receive a wedding invitation and that becomes my wedding gift.


Prayer videos

Prayers for young Muslims ( 7 minutes)

As per Hanafi school. Differences exist in other schools.

Prayers for young ladies ( 8 minutes)

As per Hanafi school. Differences exist in other schools.




Niyat for prayers

I would like you to see the following link. It is a very clear opinion. Mufti Taqi Usmani is very well known personality, son of Mufti Mohammad Shafi, author of Maariful Quran and a world authority on Islamic Banking and I had met him once when he was Chairman of Shariah Board of Abu Dhabi Islamic Bank where I worked.

Intention is from the heart and need not be any specific words or in Arabic or by verbalizing words aloud. Takbir-e-Tahrima ( Allahu Akbar) is important.

Also this link

Islamic Banking material will be shared via another post.

Pray like Prophet Muhammad SAW prayed


Mistakes in prayers

Women’s prayers:

I must mention that Hanafis follow what is described below whereas other schools have differences.
Relevant part from the link given below.

Many of our Brothers and Sisters object to the method of prostration (for women) in which it is preferred for her to make herself compact and cling herself to the ground including with her arms and elbows. The primary evidence quoted in opposition to this method (of making oneself) compact is as follows:

Anas (RA) narrated that the Prophet (Sallallaho Alaihe Wassallam) said, “Do the prostration properly and do not put your forearms flat with elbows touching the ground like a dog. And if you want to spit, do not spit in front, nor to the right for the person in prayer is speaking in private to his Lord.” [Bukhari]

According to a number of Jurists, this narration isn’t applicable to women but exclusive to men:

  1. There are numerous (authentic) narrations where Sahabah (RA) narrate the prayer of Nabi (Sallallaho Alaihe Wassallam) and in the description of prostration that clearly narrate that his elbows were off the ground and separate from the rest of the body. Therefore it is interpreted that this method is exclusive to men, a sample narration is produced below.

Narrated Uqbah ibn Amr al-Ansari: Salim al-Barrad said: We came to AbuMas’ud Uqbah ibn Amr al-Ansari and said to him: Tell us about the prayer of the Messenger of Allah (Sallallaho Alaihe Wassallam). He stood up before us in the mosque and said the takbir. When he bowed, he placed his hands upon his knees and put his fingers below, and kept his elbows (arms) away from his sides, so everything returned properly to its place. Then he said: “Allah listens to him who praises Him”; then he stood up so that everything returned properly to its place; then he said the takbir and prostrated and put the palms of his hands on the ground; he kept his elbow (arms) away from his sides, so that everything returned to its proper place. Then he raised his head and sat so that everything returned to its place; he then repeated it in a similar way. Then he offered four rak’ahs of prayer like this rak’ah and completed his prayer. Then he said: Thus we witnessed the Messenger of Allah (Sallallaho Alaihe Wassallam) offering his prayer. [Abu Dawood]

2 The Sahabah (RA) understood that women are to make themselves compact during prostration and a few of these narrations are given below:

Sayyidina Abdullah Ibn Umar (RA) narrates Rasul-ullah (Sallallaho Alaihe Wassallam) said that when a woman sits during prayer then she should place her thighs (on one another) and when she prostrates she should join her stomach with her thigh as it is more concealing and verily Allah (SWT) looks at her in this condition and says to the Angels, “Bear witness that I have forgiven her”. [Baihaqi]

Abu Saeed Khudri (RA) narrates that Rasul-ullah (Sallallaho Alaihe Wassallam) stated that the best rows for men are the front ones and the best ones for women are the last ones during Salah. He (Sallallaho Alaihe Wassallam) used to instruct men to be loose and for women to be (compact) during prostration. Men were ordered to keep the left foot flat and the right foot standing during Tashahuud and for the women to sit (squarely compact) during Tashahuud and for them not to lift their eyes to look at the Sat’r of men. [Baihaqi]

3 The understanding of some of the Taba’een also concurs with some of the Sahaba (RA) and a few of these Athaar are given below:

Sayyidina Ata (RA) states that a woman should be compact and when she prostrates she should join her (arms) [towards the floor] and her stomach and chest should join the thighs thus she should become as (compact) as possible Musannaf Abd al-Razzaq.

Sayyidina Ibraheem An-Nakhai (RA) states that women are instructed that when they prostrate to join the stomach with the thighs so her backside is not jutting upwards and parts of her body are not separate like men (but compact and together) [Baihaqi].




Darul Tahqiq

Postures for men



Postures for women





My experience with Zakat

Till 1998, I used to pay Zakat on approximate calculations of my wealth and savings and a rough weight quoted by my wife. In 1998, a senior lady colleague who was Britisher and new revert married to a Omani came to me to consult on Zakat. She asked whether she needs to pay Zakat on diamonds, whether weight has to be adjusted as per carats and other questions. She mentioned that she took the whole lot of jewelry to a goldsmith to weigh. I gave her whatever clarifications I could. But what really impressed me was her desire to be accurate in her calculations.

Soon after, I started using proper calculation sheets and purchased a balance to weigh the gold. Masha Allah, over the ensuing years,  I could see accelerated growth in my investments in the real estate and shares. Believe it or not, my portfolio grew by 100% each year without any serious intervention from my side.

For those who give in Charity, men and women, and loan to Allah a Beautiful Loan, it shall be increased manifold (to their credit) and they shall have (besides) a liberal reward. Al Mujaadilah: Ayat 13

Since then, I pass on my experience to all my relatives and friends to share in the benefits of protection of our wealth by Allah which is his promise for paying Zakat regularly.

One of the points of view I very much appreciate is that the measure of Zakat at 1/40th (2.5%) of your wealth is the minimum laid down in Shariah. Though this detailed calculation is not mentioned in Quran, Zakat and Salat together have been mentioned many times. But should we not look at the other side of it. Why don’t we exceed this 2.5% and think that there is no maximum of Zakat as long as there are needy and helpless in the world. Zakat, by the way, is besides our Sadaqa, Hadiya, and all other kinds of charity. A Sahih Hadith is quoted below on calculation of Zakat.

Hadith on Zakat: The command to give 2.5% of surplus wealth as alms and charity

Ali ibn Abu Talib reported: The Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, said, “If you have two hundred coins and a year has passed, then five coins is due for alms; and you will owe nothing until you own twenty coins, but when you own twenty coins and a year has passed, then half of a coin is due for alms and whatever exceeds that should be calculated likewise.”Source: Sunan Abu Dawud 1572

There are many books and much material on the net and everywhere else. An eBook compiled and written by my good friend Arif Jameel is linked below. He has done extensive research and explained things very clearly. As he is still open for suggestions to improve, he has left it as a draft. I find it very reliable and user-friendly. It has a section of FAQ. Jazakallah Arif Jameel.


You can also visit the website to download the book and a Zakat calculator.

Here are two Zakat calculation sheets. The first one is quite elaborate for an individual with personal as well as business interests. The second one is more applicable to Muslim women who have gold.

Zakat calculator

Zakat_Gold (women)