Those who do not have wudoo’ or women who are menstruating touching the cover of the Mushaf and books of tafseer
Praise be to Allah.
It is not permissible for one who is in a state of impurity to touch the Mushaf without a barrier, according to the majority of fuqaha’, because of what it says in the letter of ‘Amr ibn Hazm that the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) sent to the people of Yemen, in which its says: “No one should touch the Qur’aan except one who is in a state of purity.” Narrated by Maalik, 468; Ibn Hibbaan, 793; al-Bayhaqi, 1/87. al-Haafiz Ibn Hajar said: The hadeeth in the book mentioned was classed as saheeh by a number of imams in terms of the isnaad and in terms of its been a widely-circulated hadeeth. Ash-Shaafa‘i said in his Risaalah: They did not accept this hadeeth until it was proven to them that it was the letter of the Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him). Ibn ‘Abd al-Barr said: This is a letter that is well known to the scholars of seerah (the Prophet’s biography), and its contents are well known to the scholars; it is so well known that there is no need for an isnaad, because it is like a mutawaatir report (one that is narrated by so many from so many that it is inconceivable that they could have agreed upon a lie); this is why people are aware of it and have accepted it .
End quote from at-Talkhees al-Habeer, 4/17
The hadeeth was classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Irwa’ al-Ghaleel, 1/158
The covers of the Mushaf that are attached to it [that is, they are attached to it with adhesive or stitches, etc] come under the same ruling as the Mushaf itself, so it is not permissible to touch them without wudoo’. The same applies to the edges of the pages.
It says in al-Mawsoo‘ah al-Fiqhiyyah (38/7): The majority of Hanafi, Maaliki and Shaafa‘i fuqaha’ are of the view that it is not allowed for the one who is not in a state of purity to touch the cover of the Mushaf that is attached to it, or the margins in which there is no writing on the pages of the Mushaf, or the spaces between the lines, or the empty pages on which there is no writing at all. That is because they are part of the page on which Qur’aan is written; therefore they come under the same ruling as it. Some of the Hanafis and Shaafa‘is are of the view that that is permissible. End quote.
With regard to covers that are separate from the Mushaf, that is, a bag in which the Mushaf is placed and taken out of, there is nothing wrong with touching it without being in a state of purity, even if the Mushaf is inside it.
It is permissible to touch the Mushaf with a barrier that is separate from it, such as the bag in which it is placed or gloves and the like.
It says in Kashshaaf al-Qinaa‘ (1/135): The one who is in a state of impurity may carry the Mushaf in its bag or wrapper, without touching it, because the prohibition has to do with touching it. Carrying it is not the same as touching it, and he may look at it and turn the pages with the edge of his sleeve or a stick and the like, such as a piece of cloth or wood, because then he is not touching it. And he may touch the Mushaf with a barrier because of what was stated above. End quote.
It is permissible for the one who is in a state of impurity – minor or major – to touch books of tafseer according to the majority of fuqaha’. However there are some who restrict that to books in which the tafseer or commentary is greater than what they contain of Qur’aan, whilst others do not stipulate this condition.
It says in al-Mawsoo‘ah al-Fiqhiyyah (13/97): It is permissible according to the majority of fuqaha’ for one who is in a state of impurity to touch books of tafseer even if they contain verses of the Qur’aan, and to carry them and read in them, even if he is junub. They said: That is because what is meant by tafseer is to learn the meanings of the Qur’aan, not to recite it, so the rulings on the Qur’aan do not apply in this case.
The Shaafa‘is stated clearly that this permissibility is subject to the condition that the tafseer be more than the Qur’aan, because there is no disrespect towards the Qur’aan in this case, and it is not like the Mushaf (which contains the text of the Qur’an only). The Hanafis differed concerning that and said that it is obligatory to do wudoo’ before touching books of tafseer. End quote.
Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen (may Allah have mercy on him) said: With regard to books of tafseer, it is permissible to touch them, because they are regarded as tafseer and the verses in them are fewer than the commentary.
They quoted as evidence for this the fact that the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) sent letters to the disbelievers in which there were verses of the Qur’aan. This indicates that the ruling is connected to what constitutes the majority of a text.
But if the amounts of tafseer and Qur’aan are equal, in this case it is a combination of something permitted and something not allowed, and neither of them outweighs the other. In this case we should err on the side of caution and follow the rulings that apply to the Qur’aan.
But if the tafseer is larger, even by a small amount, then it comes under the rulings on tafseer.
End quote from ash-Sharh al-Mumti‘, 1/267
It says in Fataawa al-Lajnah ad-Daa’imah (4/136): It is permissible to translate the meanings of the Qur’aan into a language other than Arabic, just as it is permissible to comment on its meaning in Arabic. That is regarded as explaining the meaning that the translator understands from the Qur’aan, but it cannot be called Qur’aan.
Based on that, it is permissible for a person to touch a translation of the meanings of the Qur’aan in a language other than Arabic and a tafseer that is written in Arabic when he does not have wudoo’. End quote.
And Allah knows best.