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Music
Q166: What is the limit separating lawful from unlawful music? If the criterion is its being labeled "entertainment or amusement," then this is not clear according to convention because there are differences of opinion on that.
A: The separating limit is its being of suitable quality for the gatherings of amusement and of immorality. (MMS, p. 28, Q53)

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Q167: Also, regarding musical tunes, what is the criterion for their prohibition? Is the criterion their actual use in songs by people of immorality or is it enough for them to be suitable for such purposes? Is there any difference in situation if they are used during the commemoration of (Imam) Husayn or Islamic songs, for example, etc.?
A: The rule also is their being suitable for gatherings (of amusement and of immorality) and their prohibition is absolutely not lifted by using them during the commemoration or otherwise, based on precaution. (MMS, p. 28, Q54)

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Q168: What is the ruling on so-called music in present customary usage?
A: It is of two kinds. One of them suits the places of amusement and entertainment and thus listening to it is prohibited. The other one is other than this and therefore is not prohibited. (FM, p. 437)

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Q169: Some types of music are broadcast before the recitation of the noble Qur'an or the adhan, before the religious program begins or during. Is it permissible to listen to it?
A: The great majority of them are of the second type and thus are lawful. (FM, p. 437)

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Q170: Musical interludes and music that precedes announcement of the news.
A: The same applies. (same answer as Q169) (FM, p. 438)

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Q171: Some types of watches, in addition to specifying the time, have musical pieces for the pleasure of the owner whenever he wishes (to hear them). Is it permissible to buy and sell them (watches), or even to listen to their music?
A: It is permissible. (FM, p. 438)

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Q172: Is it permissible to listen to religious songs?
Follow up: You mean religious phrases that are composed with musical tunes that are common amongst the people of amusement and entertainment?
Response: Yes.
A: It is prohibited to listen to them. The same ruling applies to all phrases that are not for pleasure and amusement -- such as supplication or dhikr -- but composed with these musical tunes. (FM, p. 437)

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Q173: Classical music is believed to soothe excited nerves, and is also prescribed at times for treatment of some psychological ailments. Is it permissible for me to listen to it?
A: Yes, it is permissible to listen to music which is not suited for the gatherings of amusement and entertainment. (FM, p. 438)

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Q174: Music with pictures that is associated with television films, popular serial programs, the aim of which is to raise the degree of excitement of the viewers in accordance with the atmosphere of the film. For example, if the exhibited scene is frightening, then this music helps in prompting fear and its effect on the viewers.
A: The great majority of them are of the lawful type. (FM, p. 438)

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Q175: . . . emotional and national poetry that are at times accompanied by music.
A: The same criterion as was previously mentioned (in Q168). (FM, p. 438)

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Q176: The buying and selling of flutes, musical recordings and the like, from among the instruments of pleasure and amusement, is prohibited. However, there are instruments made for children's amusement. Is it permissible to buy and sell them?
A: It is permissible as long as they are not classified among the instruments of forbidden pleasure and amusement. (FM, p. 411)

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Q177: Is it permissible for a Muslim to send his son to one of the musical institutes to study music as a profession under the condition that he will not use his profession for forbidden things?
A: There is no objection to studying lawful music in itself, but in sending children to musical institutes one should ensure that it does not negatively affect them in their religious upbringing. God knows best. (MMS, p. 17, Q19)

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Dancing
Q178: Is it permissible for a wife to dance for her husband in order to provide him happiness and to excite him?
A: This is permissible for her. (FM, p. 436)

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Q179: . . . her dancing in front of others?
A: It is not permissible for her to dance in front of any other but her husband amongst the men [rather, it is not permissible for her to dance in front of women as well]. (FM, p. 436)

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Q180: . . . a man dancing in front of men or women other than his wife?
A: Likewise, it is not permissible. (FM, p. 437)

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Q181: Some schools in western countries force the male and the female students to study the art of dancing. This dancing is not linked with the popular music and is not for amusement, but is part of the curriculum. Is it prohibited for the parents to grant permission to attend these lessons?
A: Yes, if it contradicts religious training, rather absolutely, based on precaution, with the supposition that the student has attained the age of puberty (bulugh). This holds except where he has a shar'i justification for studying it in the case where he is following (taqlid) the one whose ruling is that it is permissible. In that case, there is no obstacle to permit him to do this. (MMS, pp. 25-26, Q46)

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Clapping
Q182: At a wedding and other joyous occasions, men and women clap.
A: It is permissible for them, provided that it does not include other forbidden things. (FM, p. 437)

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Lottery
Q183: [Lottery] is a well-known game in America and is the closest thing to [yanasib], if it is not exactly the same. Is it permissible for a Muslim to engage in the sale of lotteries with special machines with the justification that it is rescuing (istinqadh) wealth from the hands of the unbelievers?
A: If he is authorized by an established company to offer and distribute them (lottery tickets) among non-Muslims, then it is permitted and he should seize the wealth with the justification of rescuing (istinqadh) it and not with the intent of selling (the lottery tickets). Alternatively, the Muslim seller takes it (money) in return for his relinquishment of his right (over the lottery tickets), if he had any special right over them. (MMS, p. 12, Q7)

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Chess, Backgammon, Wrestling and Boxing
Q184: What is the general rule for an instrument to be prohibited and to be considered an instrument of gambling. Is it making and adopting it (the instrument) for gambling or is it its conventional usage? Is there a difference between its being a convention for a particular society or its being so universally?
A: The general rule is that it is made for gambling and used for it, such that the term "gambling instrument" can be applied to it. It is enough if it is regarded as an instrument (for gambling) in one particular society. (MMS, pp. 27-28, Q52)

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Q185: (Is it permissible) to play chess and backgammon without placing a bet?
A: It is not permissible to play them. (FM, p. 436)

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Q186: What is the ruling on playing chess by using the customary pieces? Is the ruling any different in the case where the game is played by computer which employs symbols and shapes instead of the customary pieces?
A: Playing it (chess) is absolutely forbidden even without placing a bet. And there is no difference in this, whether it is (played) with customary pieces or by computer. (MMS, p. 27, Q51)

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Q187: Some people play with gambling instruments other than chess and backgammon for enjoyment and without placing a bet.
A: [It is prohibited to play with all that is considered a gambling instrument even without placing a bet]. (FM, p. 436)

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Q188: Some electronic games that appear on TV with an apparatus called "Atari" and are played with buttons for enjoyment, without placing a bet.
A: If the pictures that appear on the screen are pictures of the instruments of gambling, then it is not permissible to play with them using the "Atari" apparatus, otherwise, it is permissible. (FM, p. 436)
Q189: Wrestling and boxing matches without placing a bet?
A: They are permissible if they do not lead to substantial bodily harm. (FM, p. 434)

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Magic
Q190: Is it permissible to use white magic which is employed for good and is the opposite of black magic which is used by evil persons?

A: Magic in all its shapes and forms is forbidden [even that which is used to undo magic] unless the matter rests upon a greater benefit such as saving the life of a respected person. (FM, pp. 417-18)

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Inviting Souls
Q191: Inviting the souls in order to ask them about their state and the barzakh and other matters pertaining to the hereafter.
A: It is prohibited to invite a respected soul whose summoning would cause him harm. Other than these (respected souls), it is permissible. (FM, p. 418)

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Exploiting the Angels
Q192: Some of them claim that they exploit the angels.
A: There is no basis to this claim. (FM, p. 418)

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Asking for Intercession
Q193: Is it permissible to ask for sustenance, a child, protection or intercession directly from the infallible ones?
Follow up: Let me ask you first. Do you seek this from them because they create, or sustain, or protect?
Response: Certainly not. But rather because they are the means to Allah (s.w.t.), the intercessors with Him in the disposal of affairs, and because they cannot do anything but with the permission of Allah, the Sublime and Exalted.
Follow up: You mean that they ask Allah the Exalted and He creates, and they ask Him and He sustains, and they ask Him and He protects, and because they are intercessors, whose pleas or supplications are not rejected, because of their status with Allah, the Sublime, and for their guardianship over us?
Response: Yes, I mean that.
A: This is permissible. Allah (s.w.t.) says: "...and seek means of nearness to Him..." (Qur'an, 5:35) and they (a.s.) are your means of approach to Allah (s.w.t.). This is permissible. (FM, p. 421)

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Slandering Allah (s.w.t.), Prophet (S) or Imams (a.s.)
Q194: During verbal disputes, some people unfortunately employ words in a non-serious manner that imply disbelief in Allah (s.w.t.) or articulate that which is inappropriate for the infallible ones (a.s.). Is it obligatory to impose a penalty (hadd) on them for that?
A: As long as they are not serious and do not mean what they are saying, there is no shar'i penalty on them but they are deserving of ta'zir. (FM, p. 419)

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Q195: If they are serious and intend to slander Allah (s.w.t.), the Prophet (S), the Imams (a.s.), religion or school of law (madhhab) and persist in this.
A: The ruling upon them is death. (FM, p. 419)

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Gossip
Q196: Is it permissible to gossip about a deviant (mukhalif) Muslim?
A: It is preferable to refrain from gossiping about him. (MMS, p. 21, Q32)

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Stealing, Cheating and Deceiving
Q197: Is it permissible for a Muslim to steal from the unbelievers in their country [Europe] or to deceive them in taking their properties by employing means that are known to them (the unbelievers)?
A: It is not permissible to steal from their private and public properties, and likewise to damage or destroy them (properties), if this tarnishes the reputation of Islam and Muslims in general. Similarly, it is not permissible even if it is not as such, but considered a deception and breach of an implied trust given to them (the unbelievers) on entry or on reception of a residency permit for their (the unbelievers) country, since the prohibition of deception and breach of trust is with regard to anyone. (MMS, p. 24, Q39)

Q198: Is it permissible for a Muslim to provide incorrect information to government agencies in Europe to obtain through legal channels privileges and financial or non-financial facilities?
A: That is not permissible for it constitutes lying and for whatever has been mentioned, there is no justification for that. (MMS, pp. 24-25, Q42)

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Q199: Is it permissible to cheat on school exams if some of the teachers help the students in doing so?
A: This is not permissible. (FM, p. 434)

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Greeting Non-Muslims
Q200: What is the ruling on saying "salam" or replying to it with respect to the People of the Book, or others amongst the unbelievers? Is it permissible to congratulate them on some of their special occasions like Christmas and the like?
A: There is no objection to commencing with "salam" to them, but it is discouraged (makruh) except when necessary, even if it is customary. Their "salam" should be replied by saying "'alayk." There is no objection to congratulating them on special occasions. (MMS, pp. 31-32, Q63)

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