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I Have Found a Hadith Permitting Eating Seafood. Why do Hanafi Scholars Prohibit It?

Answered by Ustadh Tabraze Azam

Question: Assalam’aleykum,

I have found a hadith in Abu Dawud, (Kitaab At-Tahaarah #83), where the Prophet (peace be upon him) is quoted as saying “Its water is pure and it’s dead are lawful (as food)”. Does this mean we can eat Lobsters? Sharks? Whales? Stingrays?

Answer: Wa alaikum assalam wa rahmatullah,

The tradition (hadith) you are referring to is reported by Imam Malik in his Muwatta’ in which the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him and give him peace) said, as part of a longer tradition, “Its water is purifying and its dead is lawful.”

The outward purport of this wording would seem to indicate the permissibility of the creatures you mention, but the Hanafis actually conditioned this by the text of the Qur’an: “who makes good things lawful to them and bad things unlawful” [7.157] and, “produce of the sea” [5.96], namely, fish.

[`Itr, I`lam al-Anam Sharh Bulugh al-Maram]

Please also see: Is Lobster Permissible According to the Hanafi School? and: What Animals Are Halal and Haram to Eat in the Hanafi School?

And Allah alone gives success.

Wassalam,

Tabraze Azam

Checked & Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Photo: pixabay.com/nitli

Should I Blame Family’s Members Who Are Hanafis for Eating Lobster?

Answered by Ustadh Tabraze Azam

Question: Assalam alaykum,

1. I have some relatives who are Hanafi muslims. But they really like eating lobster, crab, calamari etc., even though they know it is not permissible within the Hanafi school. And I don’t think they’re going to stop. Should I forbid them to do this?

2. What is the ruling about keeping the name ‘Rabiba’ for a girl in Islaam? And what is the precise meaning of that name?

Answer: Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh,

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

(1) If there is a legitimate difference of opinion on the particular food, they cannot be blamed as there is leeway to take a dispensation from another school.

(2) Yes; a rabiba is the step or foster daughter. Please see: Is it Necessary to Change One’s Name after Becoming Muslim?

And Allah alone knows best.

wassalam,

Tabraze Azam

Checked & Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Is Lobster Permissible According to the Hanafi School?

Answered by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani
Question: Assalam’aleykum,
Are Lobster and crab permissible to eat according to the Hanafi School? What about prawn and shrimp?
Answer: Walaikum assalam wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh,
I pray this finds you in the best of health and spirits.
Lobster and crab weren’t considered “fish” by the Arabs, and are thus considered impermissible to consume in the Hanafi school–where the permission for the “produce of the sea” (sayd al-bahr) in the Qur’an [3.96] is considered limited to what was the customary produce of the sea considered wholesome (tayyib) by the Arabs, namely fish alone. [Kasani, Bada’i` al-Sana’i`; Ibn al-Humam/Marghinani, Fath al-Qadir `ala al-Hidaya]
The Arabs appear to have considered prawn/shrimp like fish in being from the “produce of the sea” and wholesome–and it is thus considered permissible in the Hanafi school.
Please see also: Are There Any Hadiths That Prohibit Eating Shrimp? and: What Animals Are Halal and Haram to Eat in the Hanafi School?
and:Is It Permissible To Eat Shrimp?
Note that there is difference of opinion among the schools about the consumption of lobster and other seafood besides fish. As such, don’t criticize nor think ill of those who consume such items–and there is leeway in terms of taking a sound dispensation from another school.
And Allah alone gives success.
wassalam,
Faraz Rabbani