Can I Say the Basmala and Just Eat Any Meat I Come Across?

Hanafi Fiqh

Answered by Ustadh Tabraze Azam

Question: Assalam’aleykum,

When one stays in a country that does not provide halal meat, or it is not readily available in the market, is it permissible for the person to eat the available meat after pronouncing the Basmala on it?

Answer: Wa alaikum assalam wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh,

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

No, this is a misunderstanding and a misapplication of the words of the Noble Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace).

`A’isha said, “They said, ‘Messenger of Allah, there are people here who were recently idolaters and they bring us meat, but we do not know whether they mentioned the name of Allah over it or not. He said, ‘You mention the Name of Allah and eat.” [Bukhari]

There are a number of different versions of this tradition (hadith) which collectively clarify that the aforementioned “they” were a people who had recently converted to Islam, and not simply an unknown group of people, let alone disbelievers.

Imam al-Qastallani further explains that their mentioning the name of Allah (basmala) at the time of eating would not have sufficed nor would it have taken the place for the omission of the basmala at the time of slaughter. [Qastallani, Irshad al-Sari li Sharh Sahih al-Bukhari]

Hence, merely saying the basmala upon unslaughtered meat does not make it lawful (halal). Moreover, the basis of meat is impermissibility, namely that it cannot be eaten unless it has been validly and soundly slaughtered.

Nevertheless, the purpose of the words of the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him and give him peace) was to remind them to say the basmala at the time of eating which is from its sunnas.

Please also see: A Reader on Halal Meat

And Allah alone gives success.

في إرشاد الساري: وليس المراد من قوله -صلى الله عليه وسلم- سموا عليه أنتم إن تسميتهم على الأكل قائمة مقام التسمية الفائتة على الذبح بل طلب الإتيان بالتسمية التي لم تفت وهي التسمية على الأكل. اهـ.

في حاشية الطحطاوي على مراقي الفلاح: قوله: ” لبقائه ” أي اللحم على الحرمة أي التي هي الأصل إذ حل الأكل متوقف على تحقق الذكاة اشرعية وبتعارض الخبرين لم يتحقق الحل فبقيت الذبيحة على الحرمة

wassalam,

Tabraze Azam

Checked & Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani