By Mujlisul Ulama of South Africa
When a modernist Muslim criticizes the dress style and appearance of Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) and the Sahaabah, we in this age in which kufr preponderates, are not surprised. Immersed in the kufr concepts and liberalism of the western kuffaar, it is just natural and logical for modernists to denigrate every teaching of the Sunnah which conflicts with the tastes and hues of western culture. In fact, even Ulama have become so terribly desensitized with the kufr of the modernists as a consequence of their mutual association and their dubious and baseless policies of ‘hikmat’ and diplomacy, that they (the Ulama) too have become chronic victims of the maladies of kufr and liberalism.
So while we cannot be surprised when modernists criticize, mock and sneer at the dress styles and appearance of Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) and his Sahaabah, there is not only surprise but shock when molvis —products of Darul Ulooms – who purport to be followers of the Ulama of the Sunnah, resort to labyrinthal arguments in order to justify styles which are in conflict with not only the practical example of the Nabi, but in diametric opposition to his explicit statements of prohibition pertaining to certain dress styles.
Every molvi is aware or should be aware that ALL the Books of Hadith contain many authentic ahadith clearly explaining the style of Rasulullah’s izaar. There is absolutely no difference of opinion among any of the innumerable authorities of the Shariah from the very inception of Islam that Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) and his Sahaabah always wore their izaar and trousers above their ankles.
In addition to their practical example, Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) and the Sahaabah verbally propagated in explicit terms the prohibition of wearing the trousers below the ankles. This style is completely unrelated to age and time. There was no incumbency of the era to wear the trousers in this manner nor were there any physical or geographic restraints or factors which compelled the adoption of this style. on the contrary, the age and the people of the time demanded that the trousers be worn below the ankles in exactly the same way as modernists, kuffaar and Muslims ashamed of the Sunnah Culture are advocating today.
In order to accomodate the liberal fancies of the western kuffaar, molvis in this age of corruption, have hooked onto a legless and baseless argument to justify, propagate and even praise the kaafir style of wearing the trousers below the ankles—a style which is in clear opposition to the style and command of Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam).
The modernist molvis of the liberal cult of westernism are arguing that the reason for the prohibition to wear the trousers below the ankles was pride. Their argument goes that on account of pride, the style was prohibited. But if there is no pride then wearing the trousers below the ankles is permissible, in fact commendable by implication of their baseless and satanic arguments which they voice over their radio channels.
Why is it haraam for a Muslim to wear a crucifix around his neck or arm? Why should it be haraam for a Muslim to keep a small idol of Bhagwan or Buddha in his pocket or display it in his home. Why should this be haraam if the Muslim concerned has no beliefs of shirk or kufr. He simply regards these items as ‘artifacts’ and symbols of ‘history’. He does not believe in these idols. He does not worship them. But we can claim without fear of contradiction that even the modernist molvis have as yet not descended to the level of corruption which will constrain them to say that keeping such idols is permissible if the reason is not shirk/worship. Although this is still the case presently, we know that there will soon come a time when keeping and admiring even these instruments of shirk and kufr will be justified and made legal by the presentation of the argument that the reason for the initial prohibition was the belief of shirk which had not yet been completely eradicated from the hearts of the new converts to Islam.
When the Shariah categorically prohibits an act or practice, the prohibition will endure regardless of the reason for which it was initially prohibited. Reciting the qira’t jahran (aloud) in Zuhr and Asr was prohibited initially on account of a particular reason which soon after the prohibition no longer existed. But inspite of the disappearance of the reason for the prohibition, the hukm of Sirri (silent) recitation will endure until the day of Qiyaamah.
Rasulullah (sallalahu alayhi wasallam) said that he who plays chess is like one who has dipped his fingers in the blood of a swine. Surely there was a cogent reason for this stern prohibition. Now, regardless of whether that reason exists in some cases or not, the prohibition of playing chess will remain until the day of Qiyaamah. In fact, the prohibition has been taken further by the Fuqaha (the Authorities of the Shariah). This prohibition has been extended to all similar games of the kuffaar.
We shall now present the relevant authentic Ahadith on the issue of the trousers below and above the ankles and then proceed to further refute and negate the utterly baseless and devious arguments tendered by modernists molvis to beguile the Ummah.
(1) Abu Hurairah (Radhiyallahu anhu) narrates: Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said:
“Whatever of the garment is below the ankles will be in the Fire (of Jahannum).”
(2) Ibn Umar (Radhiyallahu anhu) narrates:
“Verily the Nabi (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said: Whoever hangs his garment in pride, Allah will not look at him (with mercy) on the day of Qiyaamah.”
[Bukhaari and Muslim]
(3) Abu Saeed al-Kudri (Radhiyallahu anhu) narrates:
“I heard Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) saying: The izaar of the Mu’min is halfway on the forlegs (i.e.midway between the knees and the ankles). There is no sin on him in that which is between it and the ankles. And, whatever is below this is in the Fire (of Jahannum). He (Rasulullah —sallallahu alayhi wasallam) repeated this statement) three times, And, he said: Allah will not look (with mercy) at the person who hangs his izaar in pride.”
[Abu Dawood and Ibn Maajah]
(4) Ibn Umar (radhiyallahu anhu) narrates:
“I passed by Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) while my trousers was hanging (i.e.below the ankles). He then exclaimed: O Abdullah! Raise your izaar. I then raised it (a bit). Then he (Rasulullah- sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said: Raise it more! I then raised it more. Thereafter I was always concious of it.” Some people asked: Until where (did you raise it)? He (Ibn Umar) said: Until midway of the forleg.”
(5) Ubaid Bin Khaalid (radhiyallahu anhu) narrates: While I was walking in Madinah, (I heard) someone behind me say:
“Raise your izaar! Verily it (raising the garment) is better for piety and preservation (of the garment).” I then looked behind and observed that it was Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam). I then said: O Rasulullah! It is a simple (of inferior quality and price) garment. Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) commented: “What, is there not for you in me an example (to follow)?” When I looked (at Rasulullah’s garment), his izaar was midway on his forlegs.”
(6) Salmah Bin Akwa’ (radhiyallahu anhu) narrates:
“Uthmaan (radhiyallahu anhu) would wear his trousers midway on his forlegs, and he would say: ‘So was the izaar of my Companion, i.e.Nabi -sallallahu alayhi wasallam).”
(7) Huzaifah Bin Yamaan (radhiyallahu anhu) narrates: Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) took hold of the flesh of my forleg (or of his forleg) and said:
“This is the location for the izaar. If you are not satisfied (with this position), then a bit lower. And if you are still not satisfied, then know that the izaar has no right in the ankles.”
Commenting on these Hadith narration, Hadhrat Shaikh Muhammad Zakariyya (rahmatullah alayh) writes:
“Severe warnings have been recorded for wearing the lungi, trousers, etc. below the ankles. That section (below the ankles) on which the garment hangs will be burnt in the Fire (of Jahannum). In view of this type (of severe) warnings (of punishment) in the ahadith, special attention should be paid to this matter. But, on the contrary in our age, the garments are specially (i.e.intentionally) worn below the ankles. To Allah does the complainer (register his complaint).”
Inspite of the many unambiguous ahadith explicitly prohibiting the kuffaar style of wearing the trousers below the ankles, molvis in this age are devoting special time on their radio channels to negate what Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) has commanded.
Any level-headed and unbiased Muslim in search of the truth will understand after a perusal of the aforementioned ahadith that wearing the trousers below the ankles is haraam.
In Hadith No. 5, Ubaid Bin Khaalid (radhiyallahu anhu) was wearing his garment below his ankles. He was walking in the streets of Madinah when Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) ordered him to raise his izaar above the ankles. In this Hadith, Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) presented two reasons for wearing the trousers above the ankles. In this style (of the Sunnah) is greater piety in view of the fact that it firstly is in conflict with the style of the kuffaar. Secondly, when a Muslim conciously abstains from emulating the style of the kuffaar, he rises in rank of taqwa. Following the method of Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) is an incumbent requirement of Taqwa, hence he said that wearing the trousers above the ankles is ‘atqaa’ (more pious). It thus flows from this reasoning presented by Nabi-e-Kareem (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) that wearing the the garment below the ankles is not in conformity with taqwa. Whether we understand the relationship between this style and taqwa is of no significance. Since Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) has offered this explanation, it is the fardh duty of every Mu’min to blindly accept it.
The second argument which Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) presented for his command to wear the garment above the ankles is that this style is ‘abqaa’ for the garment. In other words the garment will be better preserved against the dirt and filth of the road and in this way be better protected. The Mu’min’s trousers should not serve the function of the street-sweeper.
It is significant that in this Hadith, Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) did not tender the argument of pride. Since he was aware that the Sahaabi was not wearing his garment below the ankles on account of pride, he did not mention pride on this occasion. However, when the Sahaabi did not understand the argument, Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) broached the subject from another angle. He asked: Is my example and way not sufficient? In otherwords, for the Mu’min the acts, practices and example of the Rasool are more than adequate. There is no need to search for reasons and wisdoms for the ahkaam (laws of the Deen). The example of Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) is compulsorily imposed on Muslims by the Qur’aan Majeed. There is no need to look elsewhere and further than this. It thus does not behove a Muslim, least of all a learned man, to dig out technicalities and by distortion present these in justification of the endeavour to negate the style and custom of Rasulullah (sallalahu alayhi wasallam).
In Hadith No. 6 Hadhrat Uthmaan (Radhiyallahu anhu), the third Khalifah, long after the demise of Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) commented on the practice of wearing the trousers above the ankles. Everyone knows and accepts that he had no pride. If the order to wear the trousers above the ankles was based on pride, Hadhrat Uthmaan and all the Sahaabah would not have been so meticulous in observing this injunction. They would have worn their trousers below their ankles since they were bereft of pride. They had attained the loftiest heights in the reformation of the nafs. There were no better, no more pious and no humbler community on earth than the Sahaabah who were thoroughly purified of all spiritual maladies by Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam). Yet, inspite of their high stage of humility, they adhered meticulously to the style of Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam).
Everyone who has studied a bit of the history of the Sahaabah, is aware that Hadhrat Ibn Umar (radhiyallahu anhu) was such a staunch and ardent follower of the minutest details of the Sunnah, that people believed that he would become insane. Pride was never the reason for him having worn his trousers below his ankles. When Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) saw this, he commanded him to raise his garment midway between the knees and the ankles. The issue of pride never featured in his wearing his trousers below his ankles nor in the argument of Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) on the occasion when he issued his instruction to this devotee of the Sunnah.
In some narrations the reason for wearing the trousers below the ankles is stated as pride. While this was the actual reason in those times for this prohibited style, it was not always the case with everyone who would wear his trousers below his ankles. Hence, we find Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) issuing stern warnings and threats of the punishment of the Fire for those who wear their trousers in the fashion of the proud people. So whether one wears the trousers below the ankles for the sake of pride or not, one is undoubtedly, imitating the style of the proud ones and the style of the kuffaar. Imitating the kuffaar by itself is a factor of prohibition.
THE HIDDEN DISEASE
Now the question to be asked is: Why would a molvi advocate a style which Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) had prohibited. He did not only present pride as the reason for the prohibition. So why is there so much concern to negate a Sunnah style? Leaving aside the technical questions and academic rulings, it can be simply understood that the permanent practice and style of Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) and his Sahaabah were to wear their garments above the ankles, not below their ankles.
That wearing the trousers above the ankles is an irrefutable Sunnah practice, will be acknowledged by all Muslims, even the modernists and the liberal molvis. on the assumption that it is not haraam to wear the trousers below the ankles, then too, why should Muslims who claim to love Rasulullah (sallalahu alayhi wasallam) have a desire to scuttle this Sunnah practice and in its place follow the style of the kuffaar? Whose style is it to wear the trousers above the ankles? And, whose style is it to wear it below the ankles? What does the Imaan of a Mu’min demand? Follow the style of Rasulullah (sallalahu alayhi wasallam) or the style of the kuffaar? Why is there such a strong aversion in the ranks of the Muslims for the style of Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam)?
What goes on in the heart of a molvi who advocates a style abhorred by Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam)? Surely there must be some hidden disease (mardh) lurking somewhere in such a heart. It is inconceivable that a Mu’min of healthy Imaan will ever stoop so low as to scrape the very bottom of the barrel of spiritual corruprion. Remember that to negate a preference of Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam), to feel ashamed of the style of Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) and to present devious arguments to distort and deny what Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) had commanded, are worse than consuming liquor, worse than fornication and worse than all the major sins put together. Such attitude is kufr.
HADHRAT ABU BAKR
The solitary narration which the denigrators of Rasulullah’s practice are able to produce as ‘evidence’ is the Hadith in which it is mentioned that Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) allowed Hadhrat Abu Bakr (radhiyallahu anhu) to wear his garment below his ankles. To present this Hadith in substantiation of the claim, the aim of which is to negate the style of Rasulullah (sallalahu alayhi wasallam), is ludicrous and utterly baseless. The Hadith in question is very clear as for the reason of the permission granted to Hadhrat Abu Bakr (radhiyallahu anhu) who was highly perturbed by his inability to maintain his garment above his ankles. He therefore, discussed this matter with Nabi-e-Kareem (sallallahu alayhi wasallam). Hadhrat Abu Bakr (Radhiyallahu anhu) was a man with a big stomach. Inspite of all his efforts to keep his garment in place, he failed. His garment would repeatedly slide down over his ankles. The Hadith in question, explicitly mentions this fact. In view of this condition and his inability to retain his garment in position above his ankles, he was exempted from the prohibition. But he had a valid reason. What valid reason do the modernists and the liberal molvis have? There are always exceptions to general rules. But the exceptions do not cancel out the law or the rule. The rule remains in place. Furthermore, why do the scoffers of Rasulullah’s style cast a blind eye to all the ahadith of prohibition and cling onto this solitary narration which in no way negates the prohibition stated so emphatically in the other narrations?
Like a drowning man, the modernist molvi tries to cling to every floating straw that passes his way. Entirely bereft of proper Shar’i arguments to bolster his corrupt view and enmity for Rasulullah’s dress style, the molvi claims that according to Imaam Shaafi (Rahmatullah alayh) it is permissible to wear the trousers below the ankles.
Let us for a moment assume that what the molvi tendered is correct. The question now is: Why does the Hanafi molvi resort to a view of Imaam Shaafi (Rahmatullah alayh), especially on an issue for which there is absolutely no need to adopt the view of another Math-hab? If it was a critical issue or an emergency or some urgent need, then in terms of the principles of the Hanafi Math-hab, a pious and experienced Mufti will have the right to issue a Fatwa on the basis of one of the other Math-habs among the Four Math-habs. But in this case of wearing the trousers, there is absolutely no such expediency.
When a Hanafi molvi ignores the views and fatwas of the authorities of his own Math-hab and clings to an opinion of another Math-hab, it follows that there is no flexibility for his baseless view in his own Math-hab, hence he had to look elsewhere for aid. His act in itself is sufficient testimony for the claim that according to the Hanafi Fuqaha and Ulama and Auliya, wearing the trousers below the ankles is haraam.
THE ACTUAL POSITION
The liberal molvi claims that according to Imaam Shaafi (rahmatullah alayh) wearing the trousers below the ankles is permissible. His claim is baseless. Imaam Shaafi does not say that “it is permissible”. According to the Shaafi Math-hab there are different degrees of prohibition for the style of wearing the trousers below the ankles. Explaining this, Imaam Nawawi (a Shaafi authority) states in his Sharhul Muslim
“It is not permissible to hang the garment below the ankles if it is for pride. If it is for a reason other than pride, it is Makrooh.
The Mustahab requirement is midway of the calfs (the forlegs) as it is stated in the Hadith of Ibn Umar.
Midway of the forlegs is Mustahab. Below this limit until the ankles is permissible without it being Makrooh. What descends below the ankles is Mamnoo’ (prohibited). If it is for pride, then the prohibition is of the haraam category (i.e.Makrooh Tahrimi). And, if it is not for pride, the prohibition is of the tanzihi category (i.e.Makrooh Tanzihi).”
Makrooh Tanzihi does not mean ‘permissible’. It remains a detestable act in the Shariah. In fact, persistence on a Makrooh Tanzihi act transforms it into Makrooh Tahrimi which is sinful and a punishable offence. It makes a man a faasiq. Clutching at straws is not Shar’i evidence for a claim.
From the aforegoing explanation it will be understood that there are several factors for the prohibition of wearing the garment below the ankles:
(a) It is the style of the kuffaar. Whoever imitates the kuffaar becomes of them.
(b) It is the way of the mutakabbireen (proud people). So whether one has pride or not, is immaterial. The fact that the mutakabbireen’s style is adopted in itself is a grave sin.
(c) The opposite style (wearing above the ankles) is ‘atqaa’ and abqaa’ according to Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam).
(d) Wearing the garment above the ankles is part of the Uswah-e-Hasanah (Beautiful Life Pattern) of Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam). The Qur’aan commands adoption of this Sunnah.
(e) The trousers has no haqq (right) on the ankles according to the explicit pronouncement of Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam).
(f) What is below the ankles will be in the Fire of Jahannum.
In view of all these factors of prohibition, the arguments of the modernist and liberal molvis have absolutely no validity. These molvis should also understand that in airing their liberal, modernist and baatil views, they do not have the support of a single one of our Akaabir Ulama. Our advice is that they should utilize their radio channels constructively to aid the Deen, not to breakdown Islam and its Culture, for then, there will be absolute justification for branding their organs of transmission as radio shaitaan and channel shaitaan.
“The Majlis” Vol.15 No.1
Source : TheMajlis.net