Jurisprudence > Amusing games


Amusing games

Q: Are there certain guidelines for centers of entertainment and amusement games to know what is prohibited and what is allowed?  

A: The issue of determining if the games of amusement are prohibited or allowed doesnít depend on their nature but rather on the way every person makes use of them. For instance, once these games facilitate the way to deviation, and once the person becomes so addicted to them that he forgets his religious duties, social obligations and family responsibilities, then such games become doubtlessly prohibited. However, if they are taken for entertainment, and if no gambling or betting is associated, then chess or any other invented game is allowed.

Q: What is unlawful about being excessive in playing with such games?

A: The excessiveness in playing with such games necessitates their prohibition due to the negative consequences. Excessiveness distracts the person from his religious and social obligations.

Q: Some jurists are skeptic about such games due to their negative consequences, such as prejudice and hatred that games might create among players, what is Your Eminenceís opinion?

A: We have mentioned that such games are not prohibited; however, once they lead to or become the causes of feelings of hatred, violation and deviation, then they surely become prohibited. In this case, they would be similar to the effects of alcohol and gambling which God mentioned in the Holy Book: {Satanís palm is (but) to excite enmity and hatred between you, with intoxicants and gambling, and hinder you from the remembrance of Allah, and from prayer: will ye not then abstain?} (5:91).

Q: Some players resort to symbolic bets to maker the game more exciting and competitive, what do you say?

A: Any kind of symbolic bet is prohibited, but if it is a token of moral reward for the winner, like the prizes given to the football or chess players, then there is no problem.

Q: Some games, which include gaining and losing such as Monopoly, use false money .Is there a problem with that?

A: There is no problem once there is no real gain; if the game ends up with a sense of entertainment without gaining or losing any real money for any person, then it is allowed.

Q: What is meant by Imam Aliís (a.s) saying in his division of time ďa time for your pleasure without committing prohibitionsĒ?

A: It means the time during which man yields to all legal kinds of both physical and spiritual comfort after a long hard working day. It includes all kinds of legal and moral amusement such as the lawful pleasure of music that relives man of his heavy physical and mental burdens.

Q: There is a saying that there is no leisure time in Islam. This conception is deduced from Aya seven, Sura Al-Inshirah:{Therefore, when thou art free (from your immediate task), still labor hard}. What do you say?

A: Leisure time is meant to be the time in which one has no longer any social, religious and business duties. Even this free time is supposed to be refined from any deviation or any prohibited immoral deeds.

Q: Some jurists prohibit chess and backgammon, do you agree?

A: Previously, these games were considered as games of gambling, and accordingly, playing them even for symbolic bets was and is still prohibited.

Q: to avoid suspicion and uncertainty about the legislation regarding such games, isnít much more preferable if you either prohibit them or issue an obligatory precaution?

A: There is a big difference between our being cautious about things, which are expected to be prohibited, and our showing concrete and strong evidence of either their allowance or their prohibitions. Thus, it is the juristís responsibility in this sense to present his evidence to whether things are allowed or not, based on the rules agreed upon by jurists. Then the people can take their choices whether to be cautious or not. Furthermore, if we attempt at taking the obligatory precaution as a law, we have then to be cautious towards every thing around us, since everything has its other negative side. But we shouldnít object if other jurists prefer to resort to obligatory precaution for fear of committing mistakes, and thus fall in the trap of prohibitions. Nevertheless, although this precaution in not rejected, we see that this law might complicate the personís life, i.e. he might see the prohibitions in things that might not be prohibited, or he might see obligations in things that are not obligatory. Thus, being cautious is good, but it might complicate the person himself and his life as well. Accordingly, the juristsí responsibility is facilitating life not complicating it. In other words, the jurists should courageously and confidently issue legislations with concrete evidence that solve the personís life.

Q: Is it allowed to attend immoral social parties for the purpose of studying their reasons and their disadvantages so as to present both legal and reasonable solutions?

A: If the person is honest with himself, obedient to his God (s.w.t), and above all very confident that his purpose is just researching these places for the purpose of presenting both the problems and the solutions that benefit the society, then there is no problem. However, since man  is very fragile and susceptible to temptations, he should, before stepping in, build a defending shield within himself against all unlawful desires, for God says: {Nay, man will be evidence against himself even though he were to put up is excuses}(Sura Al Qiyama, : 15)

Q: What is the legislative judgment regarding mixed parties?

A: If the mixing of sexes whether in practice or in certain situations, represents the path of deviation that deforms the image of Islam and leads to prohibited results, then it is forbidden.

Q: How much makeup a woman is allowed to use when she appears before male strangers?

A: She should appear with her natural face which is void of all the kinds of make up that sexually excite and tempt men.

Q: Is the Muslim woman allowed to wear moving clothes in the parties of children and woman?

A: It is not forbidden, for Islam doesnít prevent women from revealing their feminine beauty to other women and to children as well, provided that they donít show their private parts.

Q: Is it allowed for young girls (below the age of religious obligation) to dance in front of men in public parties?

A:  In principle, we can say that young girls, below the age of religious obligation, are allowed to appear without the veil and even to dance in front of men. However, we have to be cautious that such occasions might not make the girl used to the atmosphere of deviation. If this is case, then it is forbidden due to secondary considerations.

Q: Are men allowed to dance for other men and is their folk dance prohibited if it is in front of women?

A: In agreement with Sayyid Al Khouie, we also allow menís dancing for one another and womanís dancing for other women provided that dancing shouldnít be indecent or obscene.

Q: in your allowance for womanís singing in weddings, is it allowed for these women to sing recent hits and listen to the music?

A: We prefer the obligatory precaution in this sense: If it is the song and the music of licentious people, then it is prohibited, but if it is soft music accompanied by soft words then it is allowed.

Q: is it allowed for a photographer to take photos in the parties of women, especially that these women are not properly veiled and, appear with make up?

A: Since these women havenít restrained from appearing as they wish, it is not prohibited then, for a photographer to take photos. However, if these women are, by nature, veiled and follow the religious obligations but like to be free in weddings, then the photographer is supposed to be careful not to look.

Q: Could it be lawful for a strange photographer to develop a film, which includes a Muslim veiled woman without the veil?

A: If it doesnít degrade and dishonor socially the woman herself, then it is not forbidden, but once this act threatens both the position and the honor of the woman, then it is prohibited.

Q: Is there any problem about the brides getting out with her full makeup in the midst of the street and with just a scarf covering her head?

A: This is unpleasant since what the face reveals from full make up is considered a big mark of temptation.

Q: What do you say about the bridegroomís entrance to the brideís room, in the presence of other veiled woman?

A: There is no problem once these women are decent and do not show or reveal the makeup to the bridegroom who at the same time should restrain himself from looking at them.

What is the religious ruling concerning applauding whether it is for encouragement or for appreciation?

Applauding in all its forms whether it is for encouragement, appreciation or pleasure is allowed provided that it is not for a prohibited thing; then of course it would be prohibited.

Is the atmosphere f extravagance, excessiveness, and wastefulness which dominate most of out weddings prohibited?

In Islam extravagance is rejected for God asks man to be moderate in his needs: Need less to say that anything exceeding its limits becomes prohibited. For instance,   Imam As-Sadik (a.s.) says that moderation is liked by God; and extravagance is detested. However, if both the social conditions and the position of the person himself necessities him to do so, then it is allowed. But I advise the believers to be moderate in such things whether there lawful or prohibited.

Are there certain recommendations for making our weddings and festivals more abiding to the spirit of the Islamic law?

I consider that if our weddings and social festivals would include some Islamic activities which consolidate the Islamic concept without at the same time disturbing atmosphere of happiness, this would enrich our Islamic situation and widen our spiritual happiness that people should live and seek.