What Is Riya (Ostentation)?

Answered by Shaykh Farid Dingle

Question: Assalamu alaykum

Is it permissible to listen to A capella songs?

Answer: Assalamu alaykum,

The letter of the law

Singing is permissible as long as the words are decent, there is no musical instruments, and the tunes are not intentionally like other forbidden forms of singing or music, for example actively trying to imitate a famous hymn or famous song sung with forbidden musical instruments.

The Prophet (Allah bless him and grant him peace) said, ‘Whoever imitates a people is of them.’ Even if a song is not forbidden, if one is clearly trying to mimic something that is wrong, one is doing something wrong.

For more details on the ruling on imitating the ways of the corrupt, please see:

https://islamqa.org/hanafi/qibla-hanafi/37041

The spirit

In general, as Muslims who believe we are on the one and only true way. We should be proud of our religion and proud of traditions that have come out of our Islamic heritage. We can build on worldly achievements of non-Musims, but we shouldn’t just follow.

I pray this helps.

Wassalam,
[Shaykh] Farid Dingle

Shaykh Farid Dingle grew up in a convert family in Herefordshire, UK. In 2007, he moved to Jordan to pursue traditional studies. Shaykh Farid continues to live in Amman, Jordan with his wife and kids. In addition to continuing his studies he teaches Arabic and several of the Islamic sciences.

Shaykh Farid began his journey in sacred knowledge with intensives in the UK and Jordan (2004) in Shafi’i fiqh and Arabic. After years of studying Arabic grammar, Shafi’i fiqh, hadith, legal methodology (usul al-fiqh) and tafsir, Sh. Farid began specializing in Arabic language and literature. Sh. Farid studied Pre-Islamic poetry, Umayyad, Abbasid, Fatimid, and Andalusian literature. He holds a BA in Arabic Language and Literature and continues exploring the language of the Islamic tradition.

In addition to his interest in the Arabic language Shaykh Farid actively researches matters related to jurisprudence (fiqh) which he studied with Shaykh Hamza Karamali, Shaykh Ahmad Hasanat, and continues with Shaykh Amjad Rasheed.

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"Whoever guides someone to goodness will have a similar reward"-- The Prophet (Peace and Blessings Be Upon Him)