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Usually muslims eat at fastfood chains here, such as Mc Donald`s, KFC etc

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:

Salam Alaikum Burhan and the crew,


I wrote a lot of times to Islamhelpline.com, and none of my questions got answered. However, I`m patient and I understand that you must have a lot of questions on a daily basis, and you`re trying your hardest to get all of them answered. May Allah bless you and all your crew on this holy month and for life for the hard work and determination.


I live in the U.S. and study Business Administration at Harvard Law, and my question was that, usually muslims eat at fastfood chains here, such as Mc Donald`s, KFC etc. Many people say, it`s okay to eat meat and chicken from such places if you yourself say `Bismillah` and not have the intention of eating something which is wholly haraam.

However, many people also say, that if it is slaughtered by neck, it is permissible to eat it whether or not the specified verses was said before the slaughter.

Here, when we ask the people that work at the FastFood Chains, they don`t know how the meat was processed. This gets a bit frustrating and I don`t know what to do. If I could get an answer, this will not only solve my problem but many of the muslims that study here at Harvard and live in doubt.

Jazak Allah Khair, for taking your time in reading all this. MayAllah Bless all of your crew, and yourself and serve you all Jannah for this splendid work. *Ameen
*

 

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Answer:

 

McDonalds fast food in US

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.

 

Your Statement I wrote a lot of times to Islamhelpline.com, and none of my questions got answered. However, I`m patient and I understand that you must have a lot of questions on a daily basis, and you`re trying your hardest to get all of them answered.

Dear and Beloved Brother in Islam, we sincerely seek your forgiveness and the forgiveness of Allah Subhanah for our severe short-comings in not being able to answer your questions to date. Allah is our witness brother, we strive to respond to every question we receive on our forum, but sometimes the number of questions from our brothers and sisters who wish to learn the deen are so overwhelming that it is truly beyond our capacity to address all of them on time. Even if I were to write all day, I would not be able to do justice to the number of questions received on this humble forum by our beloved brothers and sisters whom Allah Subhanah has blessed the quest to seek the Knowledge of Truth!

 

We sincerely hope for your understanding if there has been a delay in receiving a response to your valuable questions on the deen; and we sincerely appreciate your patience.

 

Your Statement: I live in the U.S. and study Business Administration at Harvard Law, and my question was that, usually muslims eat at fastfood chains here, such as Mc Donald`s, KFC etc. Many people say, it`s okay to eat meat and chicken from such places if you yourself say `Bismillah` and not have the intention of eating something which is wholly haraam.
However, many people also say, that if it is slaughtered by neck, it is permissible to eat it whether or not the specified verses was said before the slaughter.


If a few conditions (which are listed below) can be met, then the meat served at McDonalds (or any other restaurant) in the USA can be termed halaal. It does not matter if the meat is beef, or lamb, or chicken, or any of the halaal animals, the terms remain the same.

Allah says in the Holy Quran Chapter 5 Surah Maidah verse 5:

All the good and pure things have today been made halaal for you; the food of the people of the Book (Jews and Christians) is halaal for you, and your food for them.

 

It is evident from the above aayah of the Holy Quran that the food of the People of the Book (Jews and the Christians) is halaal for the believers. Some people say that the People of the Book today commit shirk and since the food of the mushriks is haraam, therefore the food slaughtered by the People of the Book is also haraam. This deduction is incorrect, as the Quran itself condemns the Jews and Christians for invoking their Prophets as the son of Allah and thus committing shirk. But Allah has made the food of the People of the Book halaal as seen in the above aayah of Surah Maidah in the Holy Quran.

 

If the below five conditions are met, the food served by the People of the Book will be termed halaal for the believers.

 

1.      The animal itself should be halaal in Shariah. (Even if a muslim (Allah forbid) were to slaughter swine, it will not make it halaal!!).

2.      The one who slaughters the animal must either be a Muslim, or a Jew or a Christian. If any other person slaughters the animal, it will not be considered halaal.

3.      The animal has to be slaughtered and the blood should be oozed out naturally. It does not matter if the animal is slaughtered by hand or by a machine, from the front of the neck or from the back. What is important is that the veins must be cut to allow the blood to be oozed out of the body.

4.      The animal should have been alive at the time of slaughter. It is a routine in most slaughterhouses in the West, that they electrocute or sting the animal with an electric shock, and then slaughter the animal. That is fine, as long as one is satisfied that the electric shock did not kill the animal before its slaughter!

5.      The condition that Allahs name has to be pronounced is not a condition for the People of the Book, as long as nobody elses name is pronounced. If anybody elses name other than Allah is pronounced at the time of slaughter, it does not matter who slaughters the animal, the meat is haraam.

 

Your Statement: Many people say, it`s okay to eat meat and chicken from such places if you yourself say `Bismillah` and not have the intention of eating something which is wholly haraam.

If any of the above five listed conditions of Shariah are violated, the declaring of Bismillah would not make the food halaal for the believers!

 

Your Statement: However, many people also say, that if it is slaughtered by neck, it is permissible to eat it whether or not the specified verses was said before the slaughter.

If one amongst our muslim, or a Jew, or a Christian brethren slaughtered the animal when it was alive, regardless of whether the name of Allah Subhanah was pronounced or not, it would be halaal for the believers to consume the food. What is important is that the person who slaughtered the live animal was a believer or a Jew or a Christian, and no other name (except Allahs) was mentioned when slaughtering the animal.

 

If a polytheist (Hindu, Budhist, etc.) were to take the name of Allah Subhanah when slaughtering the animal, then the meat would not be halaal for the believers to consume.

 

Your Statement: Here, when we ask the people that work at the FastFood Chains, they don`t know how the meat was processed. This gets a bit frustrating and I don`t know what to do. If I could get an answer, this will not only solve my problem but many of the muslims that study here at Harvard and live in doubt.

Dear and Beloved Brother, because it is actually difficult to ascertain whether the person who slaughtered the animal was a believer or a Jew or a Christian; and because it is difficult to ascertain whether the animal was alive at the time of being slaughtered, this confusion of whether a believer can eat from the available fast-food restaurants in the West will remain! Until one can determine these two vital issues, one cannot say with conviction that the food served is halaal, nor can one say with absolute conviction that the food served is haraam.

 

Sahih Al-Bukhari Hadith 3.267 Narrated by An Numan bin Bashir

The Prophet (saws) said: "Both legal (halaal) and illegal (haraam) things are obvious, and in between them are (suspicious) doubtful matters. So whoever forsakes those doubtful things lest he may commit a sin, will definitely avoid what is clearly illegal; and whoever indulges in these (suspicious) doubtful things bravely, is likely to commit what is clearly illegal. Sins are Allah's Hima (i.e. private pasture) and whoever pastures (his sheep) near it, is likely to get in it at any moment."

 

In our humble opinion, the best path would be to take the guidance of the Messenger of Allah (saws) as stated in the above narration, fear Allah, and stay away from a matter wherein there is a reasonably clear doubt. If one abstains from consuming something which is reasonably suspicious and doubtful only for the fear and sake of Allah Subhanah even though it is inconvenient and tempting, one will secure his reward from his Lord Most Gracious, Most Bounteous.

 

Whatever written of Truth and benefit is only due to Allahs Assistance and Guidance, and whatever of error is of me alone. Allah Alone Knows Best and He is the Only Source of Strength.

 

Your brother and well wisher in Islam,

 

Burhan

 


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