Am I Committing Minor Shirk for Not Greeting Muslims?

Answered by Ustadha Shazia Ahmad

Question

I’m really depressed and mentally unwell as I’m not able to get rid of this thing. I’m really stuck, and I always feel I’m committing minor shirk, due to which I’m not able to concentrate on my routine, prayers, and worship as well. If I feel shy to say salam to someone, am I committing minor shirk by refraining from saying salam? I’m really confused, and please clarify for me. I’m really sad and depressed.

Answer

Thank you for your question. May Allah grant you ease from this affliction and ease your hardships. Allah loves you because you are a believer, and I want you to capitalize on that.

Greetings

It is not obligatory to start by saying “Assalamu alaykum” to someone, but rather it is sunna. When someone has already started by saying “Assalamu alaykum” to you, it is obligatory to respond to their greeting. Not responding would be sinful but not considered minor shirk.

Please see the details here:
Is Giving the Greeting (Salam) Obligatory or Recommended?
Forgotten Sunnas: Greetings of Peace – Shaykh Jamir Meah

Depression

Your depression sounds very serious, and not wanting to see people or speak to them can and will aggravate your depression. I urge you to see a professional and work with them regularly until you have a handle on this. Turn to Allah during this difficult time with supplication, prayers, giving charity, and daily Qur’an. Exercise and nutritional supplements are also very important, as well as having a gratitude journal.

Please see these important tips as well:
I Have Chronic Depression, and Treatment Is Not Helping. What Can I Do?
Prayer for Mental Well-Being
Being Depressed? Or Hoping for the Best?
Ridding Oneself of Depression and Suicidal Thoughts
Being Balanced – Emotional and Mental Health- Shaykh Abdul-Rahim Reasat

May Allah open your heart to all that it can encompass and give you the best of this world and the next.

[Ustadha] Shazia Ahmad
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadha Shazia Ahmad lived in Damascus, Syria for two years where she studied aqidah, fiqh, tajweed, tafsir, and Arabic. She then attended the University of Texas at Austin, where she completed her Masters in Arabic. Afterward, she moved to Amman, Jordan where she studied fiqh, Arabic, and other sciences. She later moved back to Mississauga, Canada, where she lives with her family.