Is It Haram to Take Selfies and Videos of Oneself?

Hanafi Fiqh

Answered by Shaykh Abdul-Rahim Reasat 

Question

Is it haram to take selfies and videos of oneself?

Answer

Taking pictures and making videos are issues on which scholars of the umma disagree. There are many learned, God-fearing scholars on both sides of the fence on both matters.

They would all agree on the impermissibility of obscene pictures, or those which portray one’s ‘awra if they are on public display.

As for selfies, they would fall under the ruling the permissibility of pictures. Scholars who allow images would allow selfies.

Please refer to this answer for more details:
What is the Ruling on Taking Photographs of Humans? [Usmani, Takmila Fath al-Mulhim]

Feeding The Ego

If one was to follow the position of permissibility and take selfies, one potential detriment should be avoided. Obsession over selfies, and pictures in general, can negatively feed one’s ego. The odd photo here and there is fine, but if it’s obsessive, it shows deeper issues.

The last thing anyone wanting to draw closer to Allah and improve their character would want is to feed the negative tendencies humans are all too prone to. Arrogance, vanity, conceit, etc. could all be provided from such an act if one is on top of the matter and vigilant.

Also, another problem here would be if the pictures had some element of worship in them, and the person posted them somewhere to show off. That would be problematic. Posting something like this with good intentions – such as appreciating Allah’s blessings or encouraging others to do a good deed – would be fine.

Be mindful of your intentions when posting such images. Be balanced in your approach to everything, including this, and intend to please Allah Most High with what you do. The rest should be fine, insha’Allah.

May Allah Most High bless you with the best of both worlds.

[Shaykh] Abdul-Rahim Reasat
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Shaykh Abdul-Rahim Reasat began his studies in Arabic Grammar and Morphology in 2005. After graduating with a degree in English and History he moved to Damascus in 2007 where, for 18 months, he studied with many erudite scholars. In late 2008 he moved to Amman, Jordan, where he continued his studies for the next six years in Sacred Law (fiqh), legal theory (Usul al-fiqh), theology, hadith methodology, hadith commentary, and Logic. He was also given licenses of mastery in the science of Quranic recital and he was able to study an extensive curriculum of Quranic sciences, tafsir, Arabic grammar, and Arabic eloquence.