Ruling on wiping over khuffayn (leather slippers) made from monkey skin

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What is the ruling on wiping over khuffayn or socks made from monkey skin?
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Answer:

Praise be to Allah.

The skins of animals may be divided into three categories: 

~1~

The skin of animals whose flesh may be eaten if they are slaughtered in the manner prescribed in Islam. It is permissible to use them according to consensus, whether they are tanned or not. 

~2~

The skin of an animal whose flesh may be eaten if slaughtered in the proper manner, but it died without being slaughtered properly. It is permissible to use this after tanning, according to the correct view. 

~3~

The skin of animals whose flesh cannot be eaten, such as lions, tigers, monkeys, leopards… 

The scholars (may Allah have mercy on them) differed greatly concerning the ruling on this type of animal skin. This was mentioned by an-Nawawi (may Allah have mercy on him) in al-Majmoo‘, where he quoted the views of the scholars and summed them up in seven views. 

See: al-Majmoo‘ by an-Nawawi (1/171); al-Mughni (1/53). 

What appears to be the case – and Allah knows best – is that the view of Imam Ahmad and a number of the early generations, that it is prohibited to use the skins of carnivorous animals and animals whose flesh cannot be eaten, is more likely to be the correct view. That is indicated by the following: 

The hadeeth of Salamah ibn al-Muhabbiq (may Allah have mercy on him), according to which the Prophet of Allah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him), during the campaign to Tabook, asked a woman for water. She said: I do not have anything but what is in a waterskin of mine that was made from (the skin of) a dead animal (one that was not slaughtered properly). He said: “Did you not tan it?” She said: Of course. He said: “Its tanning is its purification.” Narrated by Ahmad (19214) and an-Nasaa’i (4170); classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Ghaayat al-Maraam (26). 

It was narrated that ‘Aa’ishah said: The Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) was asked about the skins of dead animals (those that died without being slaughtered properly) and he said: “Their tanning is their purification.”

Narrated by an-Nasaa’i (4172); classed as saheeh by Shaykh al-Albaani. 

It is well known that in the case of animals whose flesh cannot be eaten, slaughtering it (in the manner prescribed in Islam) does not make it purified (and permissible to eat). 

Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen (may Allah have mercy on him) was asked: 

What is the guideline on using animal skins, whether they come from animals whose flesh may be eaten or those whose flesh may not be eaten, and whether they were tanned or not tanned? 

He replied: 

As for the skins of animals whose flesh becomes halaal by slaughter in the manner prescribed in Islam, they are taahir (pure), such as the skins of camels, cattle, sheep, deer (gazelles), rabbits and so on, and whether they are tanned or not. As for the skins of animals whose flesh cannot be eaten, such as the skins of dogs, wolves, lions, elephants and so on, they are najis (impure), regardless of whether they were slaughtered, died or were killed, because if even they are slaughtered in the prescribed manner they do not become permissible and they cannot be pure, hence they are impure; and regardless of whether they were tanned or not, according to the more correct scholarly opinion. According to the more correct scholarly opinion, impure skins cannot be purified by tanning if they come from animals that do not become permissible to eat by slaughter in the prescribed manner. In the case of skins from animals whose flesh may be eaten but they die before they can be slaughtered properly, if they are tanned then they become pure, but before tanning they are impure. So now animal skins may be divided into three categories: 

~1~

Those which are pure whether they are tanned or not. These are the skins of animals that have been slaughtered in the prescribed manner, if they may be eaten. 

~2~

The skins that do not become pure either after tanning or before tanning; they are impure. This refers to the skins of animals whose flesh cannot be eaten. 

~3~

Skins that become pure after tanning but are not pure before that; they are impure. These are the skins of animals whose meat may be eaten (if slaughtered in the prescribed manner), if the animal died without being slaughtered in the proper manner.

End quote from Liqa’ al-Baab al-Maftooh, no. 16 

See also the answer to question no. 147632 

We may add that monkeys come under the heading of carnivorous animals and the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) forbade using the skins of such animals. 

It was narrated from al-Miqdaam ibn Ma’deekarib that the Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) forbade wearing and riding on the skins of carnivores.

Narrated by Abu Dawood (4131); classed as saheeh by Shaykh al-Albaani 

It was narrated from Qataadah ibn Abi’l-Maleeh from his father that the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) forbade using the skins of carnivores as furnishings.

Narrated by at-Tirmidhi (1771); classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Mishkaat al-Masaabeeh, no. 506 

See also the answer to question no. 105419

Secondly: 

Once it is established that the skins of animals whose flesh may not be eaten and the skins of carnivorous animals are impure after death, it is not permissible to wear them whilst praying, or to wipe over them for the purpose of purification (wudoo’) even after tanning, because one of the conditions of prayer being sound is that the garments worn should pure, and one of the conditions for wiping over the khuffayn is that they should be pure. 

It says in Kashshaaf al-Qinaa‘ (1/116): It is also stipulated that be pure in and of itself, because that which is impure in and of itself is not allowed. Hence it is not valid to wipe over something impure, even in the case of necessity, because of what is mentioned above concerning silk… end quote. 

Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen (may Allah have mercy on him) said: Wiping over something pure – This is the second condition stipulated for the validity of wiping over the khuffayn, which is that the item worn should be pure. The word pure here refers to that which is pure in and of itself, which excludes that which is impure in and of itself. 

The word pure may be applied to something that has not been touched by impurity, such as if you say: You have to pray in a pure garment, i.e., one that has not been touched by impurity. 

What is meant here is something that is pure in and of itself, because some khuffs may be impure in and of themselves, such as if it is a khuff made from donkey skin; and some may be pure in and of themselves, but they have been contaminated or touched by impurity, such as if the khuff is made of skin from a camel that was slaughtered in the prescribed manner, but it was touched by impurity. Hence the former is impurity that is impure in and of itself, but the latter deemed to be impurity according to the ruling. 

Based on that, it is permissible to wipe over a khuff that has become impure, but not to pray wearing it, because in the case of prayer it is stipulated that one must avoid impurity. The reason why the item to be wiped over must be pure in and of itself is that wiping over something that is impure in and of itself only increases it in impurity; in fact if the hand touches this impurity when it is wet, it also becomes impure.

End quote from ash-Sharh al-Mumti‘ (1/228) 

And Allah knows best.

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

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