Wednesday | 06 December 2023 | 22 Jamadiul-Awal 1445
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Fatwa Answer

Question ID: 1612 Category: Lifestyle
What does "'Id" mean in the context of this hadith?

As-salaamu alaykum,

13 The Two Festivals (Eids)
(3)Chapter: The legal way of the celebrations on the two 'Eid festivals

Narrated Aisha:
Abu Bakr came to my house while two small Ansari girls were singing beside me the stories of the Ansar concerning the Day of Buath. And they were not singers. Abu Bakr said protestingly, "Musical instruments of Satan in the house of Allah's Messenger (ﷺ) !" It happened on the `Id day and Allah's Messenger (ﷺ) said, "O Abu Bakr! There is an `Id for every nation and this is our `Id."
حَدَّثَنَا عُبَيْدُ بْنُ إِسْمَاعِيلَ، قَالَ حَدَّثَنَا أَبُو أُسَامَةَ، عَنْ هِشَامٍ، عَنْ أَبِيهِ، عَنْ عَائِشَةَ ـ رضى الله عنها ـ قَالَتْ دَخَلَ أَبُو بَكْرٍ وَعِنْدِي جَارِيَتَانِ مِنْ جَوَارِي الأَنْصَارِ تُغَنِّيَانِ بِمَا تَقَاوَلَتِ الأَنْصَارُ يَوْمَ بُعَاثَ ـ قَالَتْ وَلَيْسَتَا بِمُغَنِّيَتَيْنِ ـ فَقَالَ أَبُو بَكْرٍ أَمَزَامِيرُ الشَّيْطَانِ فِي بَيْتِ رَسُولِ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم وَذَلِكَ فِي يَوْمِ عِيدٍ‏.‏ فَقَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم ‏ "‏ يَا أَبَا بَكْرٍ إِنَّ لِكُلِّ قَوْمٍ عِيدًا، وَهَذَا عِيدُنَا ‏"‏‏.‏
Sahih al-Bukhari 952
In-book reference
Book 13, Hadith 4
USC-MSA web (English) reference
Vol. 2, Book 15, Hadith 72

I have heard it refers to the two Eids (Eid al-Fitr and Eid al-Adha), but what do musical instruments have to do with Eid? Did the Prophet S.A.W. let the Ansari girls play their intstruments, because I have heard that musical instruments are haraam. 

Jazak Allahu Khayran, may Allah preserve and bless you and your families during this holy month.

بسم اللہ الرحمن الرحیم

الجواب وباللہ التوفیق: 

Playing music and singing are among pastimes and the entertainment is a natural human need. In this sense, the people generally organize dances, singing, playing and music on occasions of happiness 

Although Islam has allowed satisfaction of natural desires for personal relaxation to relieve fatigue and boredom through fun, good humor, and jokes but it does not leave man with absolute freedom to choose and do whatever he likes. There are certain rules and constraints to abide by in entertainment as well 

It is highly beneficial to read Hazrat Mufti Shafi’e Sahib's (RA) book on this subject 

The fact is that music and musical instruments are illegal and strictly forbidden in Islam 

The Holy Prophet (SAW) said, "I have been sent to break musical instruments." Once walking on the way, while hearing the drums, (he, peace be upon him) put his fingers in both his ears, so that the sound does not reach the ears 

According to a hadith: “listening to music creates hypocrisy in the heart same as the water develops greenery” 

The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said 

 لیکونن من امتی اقوام یستحلون الحر الحریر والخمر والمعارف (صحیح بخاری: ۵۵۹۰)

(Some people in my ummah will declare silk, wine and musical instruments as halal)

In another Hadith

ان اللہ حرم علیکم الخمر والمیسرو الکوبۃ وھو الطبل وقال: کل مسکر حرام (ابوداؤد ،حدیث:۳۶۹۶) (مسند احمد ۲۴۷۶)

Hazrat Abdullah Ibn Abbas (RA) narrates

 الدف حرام والمعازف حرام، والکوبۃ حرام، والزمار حرام (سنن الکبریٰ للبیھقی:۱۰؍۳۷۶)

(The tambourine is forbidden, the musical instruments are forbidden, the drum is forbidden, and the flute is forbidden) 

In the above Ahadith, musical instruments are explicitly forbidden. Therefore, no question of their permissibility 

However, from general appearance of some Ahadiths, including the one you have mentioned in your question; some ignorant, selfish and/or luxurious people try unsuccessfully to justify music and singing.  But if we take a closer look at those Blessed Ahadiths, they prove the opposite and invalidate the above-mentioned ways of entertainment 

 The two singing girls were minors of tender age, that is why Hazrat Ayesha (RA) mentioned the word “Jaariya” for them. In Arabic “Jaariya” is called a minor girl, who has not come of age yet 

 Their poetic verses glorified courage and bravery and valiance in the Holy Wars (Jihad). Those poems were recited on the occasion of “Jang-e- Ba'aath” also  

Poems like those help in boosting morale of the Mujahideen in fulfilling their religious duties, devoid of love, obscenity, and indecent display

Otherwise, how could the Prophet of Allah (SAW) remain silent on that

The Prophet of Allah (SAW) did not like this act, but rather took a break from participating in it, in such a way that he turned his face away with a veil

 From this it is known that the Companions (RA) of the Holy Prophet (SAW) also considered it illegal to sing. That was the reason why Hazrat Abu Bakr (RA) even rebuked his daughter Hazrat Ayesha (RA) on that occasion as to how this evil deed was being done in the house of the Holy Prophet!  The Prophet of Allah did not refute that statement of Hazrat Abu Bakr (RA).   However, due to the suitability of Eid, permission was given including some other valid reasons

 In particular, the girls were minor and not professional singers

It is obvious that even one of these things is not found in our Islamic society 

But dancing, singing, drums, music, poems containing obscene and indecent lyrics of sensual nature, and acted by mature and professional women singers - how could the reference of those two innocent minor girls be used to justify the above lewd activities. Therefore, it is just a satanic trick. It must be avoided 

فقط واللہ اعلم واتم