How Can I Avoid Worshipping a Picture While Praying?

Hanafi Fiqh

Answered by Ustadh Tabraze Azam

Question: Outside my house, there is a lot of Mary statues and the qibla almost faces their side. When I go to the mosque, there is a picture of Isa outside the mosque and I fear I may be worhipping it and committing shirk. I sometimes fear lines may look like a cross. If im praying in congressional or alone, I fear that I may be worshiping the person in front of me. Can you help me?

Answer: Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh,

I pray that you are in the best of health and faith, insha’Allah.

What is interdicted is directly facing a statue or picture of an animate being in your immediate vicinity. If it is distant, small, missing vital limbs, not in front of or above you, or being used in a humiliating manner, it is not prohibitively disliked, and in some cases, not disliked at all.

As for thoughts and whisperings of shirk and the like, you should ignore them and seek refuge in Allah from them. Wild thoughts don’t change the apparent, namely that your prayer is for Allah.

I’d advise taking the following free class: Absolute Essentials of Islam: Beliefs & Worship (STEP) And find some righteous company. Our religion is a social religion, and the company you keep can have a tremendous impact on your spiritual life.

See also: Can I Have Pictures in my House? Can I Pray in a Room having Pictures in it?

And Allah alone gives success.


Tabraze Azam

Checked & Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani