Thursday 7 Rabi‘ al-awwal 1440 - 15 November 2018
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Going to horoscope pages and channels in order to refute them

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Publication : 11-02-2018

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Question

What is the ruling on going to horoscope Facebook pages and channels on YouTube in order to refute them only, because this is shirk and based on myths?

Praise be to Allah

Firstly:

It is not permissible for a Muslim to go to fortune tellers or listen to them, even if he does not believe in what they claim to have of knowledge of the unseen, because of the report narrated by Muslim (2230) from one of the wives of the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him), from the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him), that he said: “Whoever goes to a fortune-teller and asks him about something, his prayer will not be accepted for forty nights.”

However, if he believes what they say, then he has disbelieved in that which was revealed to Muhammad (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him).

Imam Ahmad (9536) narrated from Abu Hurayrah that the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) said: “Whoever goes to a soothsayer or fortune teller and believes what he says has disbelieved in that which was revealed to Muhammad (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him).” Classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh al-Jaami‘ (5939).

An-Nawawi (may Allah have mercy on him) said:

The scholars said: It is only prohibited to go to soothsayers because they speak of matters of the unseen that may come to pass by coincidence, so there is the fear that people may become confused because of that, because they try to confuse people and make them drift away from the path of Islam. There are many saheeh hadiths which indicate that it is forbidden to go to soothsayers and believe what they say.

End quote from Sharh an-Nawawi (5/22).

Secondly:

Astrology involves making connections between events on earth and the movements of the stars, interpreting what happens on earth on the basis of astronomical events.

One of the types of astrology is that which is called horoscopes and zodiac, in which it is believed that the child who is born under a particular sign of the Zodiac will be lucky or unlucky, and what they say about the nature and characteristics of people according to their star signs.

Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen (may Allah have mercy on him) said, commenting on the words of the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him), “Whoever acquires any knowledge of astrology has acquired knowledge of a branch of witchcraft”:

What is meant here is that knowledge of the stars through which they seek to predict earthly events, so – for example – when a certain star appears in conjunction with another star, they predict that such and such will happen, and if a person is born under a particular star, he will be lucky, and if a person is born under another star, he will be unlucky. From the different positions of the stars they predict various earthly events. But earthly events are decreed by Allah; the causes thereof may be known to us or they may be unknown, but the stars have nothing to do with it.

End quote from al-Qawl al-Mufeed (1/519).

It says in Fataawa al-Lajnah ad-Daa’imah (27/203):

It is haraam to publish, read or propagate horoscopes, and it is not permissible to believe them; rather this is a kind of disbelief (kufr) and is contrary to Tawheed. What you must do is be aware of that, advise others to avoid it, and rely only on Allah, may He be glorified and exalted, putting your trust in Him in all your affairs. End quote.

See also the answers to questions no. 2538 and 147232.

Thirdly:

If someone has sufficient knowledge to be able to advise these fortunetellers and charlatans, so he tries to communicate with them, and he goes to them where they are, so that he can tell them that what they are doing is wrong and explain to them the Islamic ruling on what they are doing, then that is not regarded as going to them in the manner that is prohibited. Rather that is something prescribed and enjoined for one who is able to do it, and it is either obligatory or recommended, no matter what the means of communicating with them.

Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen (may Allah have mercy on him) stated that speaking to fortune tellers or asking them questions is of different types, one of which is:

… The fourth type: asking the fortuneteller questions in order to highlight his falseness and lies. Thus one may test him by asking him questions, and this may be obligatory or may be something that is needed. Proving the words of soothsayers to be wrong is something that is needed, and may be obligatory. In that case, going to the soothsayers and asking them questions is not the same in all cases; rather it depends on the reason for going to them, as is indicated by other shar‘i texts.

End quote from al-Qawl al-Mufeed (2/49).

Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah said:

But if he is asking him in order to test him and find out what he really is, and he (meaning the questioner) has sufficient knowledge to recognise when he is telling the truth and when he is lying, then this is permissible, as it is proven in as-Saheehayn that the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) asked Ibn Sayyaad: “What comes to you?” He said: (Sometimes) a truthful one comes to me and (sometimes) a liar comes. He said: “What do you see?” He said: I see a throne on water. He said: “I am hiding something from you.” He said: (It is) ad-dukh, ad-dukh. He said: “Be off with you! You will never go beyond your rank. Rather you are one of the brethren of the soothsayers.”

End quote from Fataawa Ibn Taymiyah (19/62).

Denouncing these astrologers is something that is needed from those who are able to do it, by all possible means, whether that is on social media, YouTube or otherwise.

But if the Muslim thinks that denouncing them is just a drop in the ocean (and will not be noticed), and no one will pay attention to it and it will not achieve the desired results – as is usually the case with these pages – then what is prescribed is for him to not waste his time, and to protect his face by keeping away from these websites, because no interest can be served by going to these pages, and it is most likely that no one will benefit from what he says, there will not even be the benefit of establishing proof against them. Moreover, by his refraining, he will thwart the aim of these people to increase the number of followers, to have their webpages become more widely known, and to cost the ignorant to become confused and be tempted to join them because of the increased popularity of their pages.

And Allah knows best.

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