Does Throwing Money–That Has the Words “In God We Trust” on It–onto the Ground Constitute Disbelief?

Answered by Shaykh Yusuf Weltch

Question 

I was at a wedding where we were dancing, and at a certain point, a person started to throw money at the bride and the groom. At the time, I didn’t know it was fake money. Real money has the phrase “In God we trust.”

Would throwing money on the floor with this on it be kufr? As soon as I noticed it, I became hesitant, slowly left the dance circle, and tried not to step on any money. Was it kufr not to tell everyone to pick up the money? It was only afterward I realized the money was fake and didn’t have God’s name on it. Let’s say it was real. Would I be accountable?

Answer

In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful and Compassionate

Throwing money, even if it contains the word God (or the like), is not disbelief.

However, if one intended to show disrespect to the name of God (which is unlikely for a Muslim) by throwing it, it is disbelief, and they are required to repent and re-embrace Islam. [Ibn ‘Abidin, Radd al-Muhtar]

Throwing Money During Gatherings of Praise

It has become a custom during Naat Khawan/Qawali to throw money at the singer out of appreciation for their praise of the Prophet (may Allah bless him and give him peace). Such a practice is well-intentioned.

It is not prohibited if this is not done out of pride or arrogance and with the above intention. However, placing the money near the singer or in their hand would be better.

Commanding the Good

It is incumbent on you to advise people if the following conditions are met:

  • they are doing something that is unanimously impermissible in the religion
  • you feel that people are likely to listen to your advice,
  • and there are no foreseen negative consequences that may arise by your giving advice. [Birgivi; al-Tariqa al-Muhammadiyya]

If the action is permissible or merely disliked (even if only some scholars held this opinion), it is not permissible for you to object to them, but you can advise them to a more cautious opinion. [Ibid.]

If they are not likely to heed your advice, or you feel they may reciprocate harm to you or increase their sin to spite you, advising them is not permitted. [Ibid.]

Dancing

The general ruling is that dancing is not permitted in the Hanafi school. It is prohibitively disliked to do so. However, the Shafi school allowed it on condition that there are no seductive movements (takassur) regardless of the person’s gender. Dancing seductively is prohibited unanimously. [al-Mawsu’a al-Fiqhiyya al-Kuwaitiyya]

Some scholars permit dancing for religious gatherings of remembrance, especially if one becomes ecstatic during such a gathering. Due to the various narrations used to support this ruling and the permission in the Shafi’i school, this remains an issue of difference of opinion and should not be a point of contention or objection. [‘Isa, Haqa’iq ‘an al-Tasawwuf]

Hope this helps
Allah knows best

[Shaykh] Yusuf Weltch
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Shaykh Yusuf Weltch is a teacher of Arabic, Islamic law, and spirituality. After accepting Islam in 2008, he then completed four years at the Darul Uloom seminary in New York where he studied Arabic and the traditional sciences. He then traveled to Tarim, Yemen, where he stayed for three years studying in Dar Al-Mustafa under some of the greatest scholars of our time, including Habib Umar Bin Hafiz, Habib Kadhim al-Saqqaf, and Shaykh Umar al-Khatib. In Tarim, Shaykh Yusuf completed the memorization of the Qur’an and studied beliefs, legal methodology, hadith methodology, Qur’anic exegesis, Islamic history, and a number of texts on spirituality. He joined the SeekersGuidance faculty in the summer of 2019.