Fatwa: # 45821
Category: Jurisprudence and Rulings...
Country: African Country
Date: 26th July 2020


Is one allowed to show pictures of animate objects to children for educational purposes?


As salaamu Alaikum.
Is one allowed to show pictures of animate objects to children when explaining the greatness of Allah Taa'la as these animals or Sea creatures cannot be shown to in the real life.


In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.

As-salāmu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullāhi wa-barakātuh.

Almighty Allah Taalah has made it easy for us to understand His greatness. It is important to instil the greatness of Allah Taalah in the hearts and minds of children.

The greatness of Allah and the manifestation of His greatness is understood from many creations around us. We observe the rising and setting of the sun daily. We observe the alternating of day and night daily. We observe the power of Allah in our bodies and in the millions of human beings.

If one ponders on every morsel of food, he will realise the might and power of Allah behind the history of each part of that morsel.

The fruits and vegetables we consume clearly demonstrate the amazing power of Allah despite them growing from one type of sand and watered with the same water.

The huge waves of the ocean and their limits of flowing beyond the shores clearly explain the power of Allah in controlling the ocean.

There are many more manifestations of the power of Allah that could be explained to children. Obtain pictures of the sun, moon and galaxy. Use these to show and explain the amazing power of Allah. Understanding the greatness of Allah is not confined to the sea creatures.

Furthermore, illustrations of animate objects are prohibited in Islam. There are severe warnings mentioned in the Ahaadith regarding this:

عَنْ مُسْلِمٍ،قَالَ كُنَّا مَعَ مَسْرُوقٍ فِي دَارِ يَسَارِ بْنِ نُمَيْرٍ، فَرَأَى فِي صُفَّتِهِ تَمَاثِيلَ فَقَالَ سَمِعْتُ عَبْدَ اللَّهِ قَالَ سَمِعْتُ النَّبِيَّ صلى الله عليه وسلم يَقُولُ ‏ "إِنَّ أَشَدَّ النَّاسِ عَذَابًا عِنْدَ اللَّهِ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ الْمُصَوِّرُونَ‏" ‏‏(صحيح البخاري حديث 5950/ صحيح مسلم 2109)

Translation: Muslim narrates, we were with Masruq at the house of Yasar bin Numair. Masruq saw pictures on his terrace and said, "I heard `Abdullah (Ibn Masud Radhiallahuanu) saying that he heard the Prophet () saying, "The people who will receive the severest punishment from Allah will be the picture makers.” (Sahih Al-Bukhari Hadith No. 5950/Sahih Muslim Hadith No. 2109)


عَنْ جَابِرٍ، قَالَ نَهَى رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم عَنِ الصُّورَةِ فِي الْبَيْتِ وَنَهَى أَنْ يُصْنَعَ ذَلِكَ ‏‏(جامع الترمذي حديث 1749)

Translation: Jabir (Radhiallahuanu) narrates: "The Messenger of Allah () prohibited having images in the house, and he prohibited making them."(Jami At-Tirmidhi Hadith No. 1749)


عَنْ أَبِي هُرَيْرَةَ، قَالَ قَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم "‏مَنْ صَوَّرَ صُورَةً كُلِّفَ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ أَنْ يَنْفُخَ فِيهَا الرُّوحَ وَلَيْسَ بِنَافِخٍ"

(سنن النسائى حديث 5360)

Translation:. Abu Hurairah (Radhiallahuanu) narrates "The Messenger of Allah () said: 'Whoever makes an image will be commanded on the Day of Resurrection to breathe the soul into it but he will not be able to do so."(Sunan An-Nasai Hadith No. 5360)


عَنْ أَبِي طَلْحَةَ ـ رضى الله عنهم ـ عَنِ النَّبِيِّ صلى الله عليه وسلم قَالَ ‏ "‏ لاَ تَدْخُلُ الْمَلاَئِكَةُ بَيْتًا فِيهِ كَلْبٌ وَلاَ صُورَةٌ ‏"‏‏

(صحيح البخاري حديث 3322)‏‏

Translation: Abu Talha (Radhiallahuanu) narrates The Prophet () said, "Angels do not enter a house that has either a dog or a picture in it." (Sahih Al-Bukhari Hadith No. 3322)

Based on the above Ahadith, illustrations of animate objects are impermissible.

And Allah Ta’āla Knows Best

Ahmad Patel

Student Darul Iftaa

South  Africa

Checked and Approved by,
Mufti Ebrahim Desai.

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The Messenger of Allah said, "When Allah wishes good for someone, He bestows upon him the understanding of Deen."
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim]