Music & Dance
Mu' meneen Brothers and Sisters,
As Salaam Aleikum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh. (May Allah's Peace, Mercy and Blessings be upon all of you)
One of our brothers/sisters has asked this question:
Music can be about love or acts which are not allowed, but this is because of our thinking. If our mind is pure than music will be pure and no evil in it? Why is dance not acceptable in Islam?
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Music & Dance
In the name of Allah, We praise Him, seek His help and ask for His forgiveness. Whoever Allah guides none can misguide, and whoever He allows to fall astray, none can guide them aright. We bear witness that there is no one (no idol, no person, no grave, no prophet, no imam, no dai, nobody!) worthy of worship but Allah Alone, and we bear witness that Muhammad (saws) is His slave-servant and the seal of His Messengers.
Firstly, we must clearly differentiate what we exactly mean by the term music. Pure music is allowed, and impure music is prohibited.
The Messenger of Allah (saws) himself allowed pure music with the instrument daff (a Arabic form of tabla) on happy occasions like marriage, etc. But any music which instigates fahisha or indecent or evil acts or emotions, or the mingling of sexes, or in which the words of shirk are propagated, will be considered impure and thus prohibited in Islam.
But to say that we must keep our minds pure, and that purity of our minds will not be affected by listening to impure music; is incorrect. The music will still be impure in Islamic terms, and chances are the pure mind will be infected with impurity! If the mind is indeed pure, then we must strive to keep it pure, by staying away from the impure things.
Allow me to relate an example:
It would be wise for a healthy person not to go intentionally to a place with infectious diseases, as there is a possibility that he might be infected with the disease, if he meets or touches people who are known to have an infectious disease. Since the person is healthy, he will strive to keep himself healthy and free of any infectious disease. Similarly, if the person wants to keep his mind pure, then he must stay away from impure things, because there is always a possibility of the impurity rubbing off on him.
In Islam, the general usool or foundation rule is that if anything is haraam, then all the roads leading to that haraam thing, are also considered haraam. Fornication and adultery are considered grave sins in Islam, and anything and everything that leads to fornication and adultery will also be considered haraam.
Your Question: Why is dance not acceptable in Islam?
As with music, dances too can be pure and impure. If the dance is done without the mingling of sexes, without fahisha or indecency, then it would be deemed legal in Islam.
It has been reported in an authentic narration that the Messenger of Allah (saws) himself saw, and allowed his wife Hadrat Aisha to see a folk dance done by an African tribe who were visiting Medina. Thus if dancing like the folk dances of today are done in an honorable manner, like the Arda of the Arabs, or the Bhangra of Punjabis, or the Kathak of South India; and there is no indecency and the mingling of the sexes in the dances; then they would be allowed in Islam. If a wife and husband dance in private, or the husband dances for his wife, or the wife dances for her husband; it would be allowed in Islam.
But dances that invoke indecency and the mixing of the sexes would be considered impure and thus prohibited in Islam.
And Allah Alone knows best, and He is the Only source of Strength.
Your brother and well wisher in Islam,