IslamQA

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Islamqa.info
Islamqa logo.jpeg
Type of site
Salafi Legal/ Religious
Available inArabic, English, Farsi, Japanese, Chinese, Uighur, French, Spanish, Indonesian, German, Portuguese, Hindi, Russian, Urdu, Turkish and Bengali
Created byMuhammad Al-Munajid
Websitehttp://islamqa.info
Alexa rankPositive decrease 4,388 (June 2018)[1]
CommercialNo
Launched1997
Current statusActive

IslamQA is a website providing information regarding Islam in accordance with the Salafi school of thought.[2] It was founded by Muhammad Al-Munajjid and is the most popular Salafi website in the Arab-speaking world.[3]

History[edit]

The service was one of the first online fatwa services, if not the first.[4] The launching of IslamQA.info in 1997 by Muhammad Al-Munajjid marked the beginning of an attempt to answer questions by making Salafi school interpretation of the Quran and Hadith.[4] The website states that "All questions and answers on this site have been prepared, approved, revised, edited, amended or annotated by Shaykh Muhammad Saalih al-Munajjid, the supervisor of this site."[5]

Contents[edit]

IslamQA is available in 16 languages, including English, Arabic, Urdu, Hindi, Turkish, German, Bangla, Chinese, Russian, French, and Spanish, the website provides fatawa covering basic tenets of faith, etiquette and morals, Islamic history, and Islamic politics.[6]

The site's vision is to be "an encyclopaedia about Islam".[7] Its aims (as described on the website) are:

  1. To spread Islam and call people to it.
  2. To spread Islamic knowledge and dispel ignorance among Muslims.
  3. To respond to people’s needs by offering advice and answers based on evidence from religious texts.
  4. To refute the specious arguments of doubters about Islam.
  5. To advise people concerning day-to-day issues, by giving educational, academic advice about social and other matters.[8]

Methodology[edit]

The site describes its methodology as such:

The website promotes the ‘aqeedah (beliefs) of Ahl as-Sunnah wa’l-Jamaa‘ah and the followers of the righteous early generations of Islam (as-salaf as-saalih). It strives to ensure that the answers are based on evidence from the Holy Qur’an and the soundly-narrated (saheeh) prophetic Sunnah, and are taken from the writings of the scholars, including the imams of the four madhhabs, Imam Abu Haneefah, Imam Maalik, Imam ash-Shaafa‘i and Imam Ahmad ibn Hanbal, as well as other earlier and later scholars, and from the statements of fiqh councils and seekers of knowledge who conduct research in various Islamic specialties.

The website avoids getting involved in issues that are of no benefit, such as empty arguments, trading insults and fruitless debates.[9]

Traffic[edit]

According to Alexa Internet in June 2013, Islamqa.info was ranked #12,038 in the world with a bounce rate of roughly 75% (i.e., 75% of visits consist of only one pageview) and search engines accounting for 35% of visits.[10] In July 2015, Islamqa.info was ranked #6,787 in the world with a bounce rate of roughly 69.9% and search engines accounting for 46.7% of visits.[11] In 2015, Alexa lists the site as the most popular on the topic of Islam.[12]

Fatwas in the media[edit]

The fatwas on the website have been noted in news sources.[13][14]

Women[edit]

The fact-checking website Punditfact mentioned Al-Munajjid's justification for why women should not drive, as published on IslamQA.info, when deciding the factual accuracy of the claim that Saudi Arabia was the only Muslim-majority nation that did not allow women to drive.[13] The fatwa was quoted saying: "It is well known that (driving) leads to evil consequences which are well known to those who promote it, such as being alone with a non-mahram (marriageable) woman, unveiling, reckless mixing with men, and committing haraam (sinful) actions because of which these things were forbidden."[13][15] The article has been removed from the website. The ban on driving in Saudi Arabia has been lifted.[16]

Slavery[edit]

One of IslamQA's fatwas on slavery — specifically of men having sex with female slaves — has been noted in the media as one of many similar fatwas published by Islamic scholars on the role of women in Islam. The fatwa was quoted stating that a Muslim wife "has no right to object to her husband owning female slaves or to his having intercourse with them [...] The scholars are unanimous in this assessment, and no one is permitted to view this act as forbidden, or to forbid it. Whoever does so, is a sinner, and is acting against the consensus of the scholars."[17][18]

Other fatwas[edit]

Al-Munajjid published a fatwa on homosexuality,[19] which he called "one of the greatest crimes, the worst of sins and the most abhorrent of deeds"[20].

Controversy in Saudi Arabia[edit]

The website was banned in Saudi Arabia because it was issuing independent fatwas. In Saudi Arabia, the kingdom's Council of Senior Scholars has sole responsibility for issuing fatwas.[21] The Council was granted this exclusive authority to issue fatwas by a royal edict issued in August 2010 (while restrictions had been in place since 2005, they were seldom enforced); this move was described by Christopher Boucek as "the latest example of how the state is working to assert its primacy over the country’s religious establishment."[22]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "islamqa.info Site Info". Alexa Internet. Retrieved 2017-08-13.
  2. ^ Richard Gauvain (2013). Salafi Ritual Purity: In the Presence of God. Routledge. p. 335. ISBN 9780710313560.
  3. ^ "Women in Islam: Behind the veil and in front of it" Deutsche Welle. 10.01.2016
  4. ^ a b Kadri, Sadakat (2012). Heaven on Earth: A Journey Through Shari'a Law from the Deserts of Ancient Arabia ... macmillan. p. 207. ISBN 9780099523277.
  5. ^ IslamQA.info website: "Introduction" retrieved September 17, 2016
  6. ^ Jonathan Schanzer, Steven Miller, Facebook Fatwa: Saudi Clerics, Wahhabi Islam, and Social Media, p 51 -52. ISBN 9780981971261
  7. ^ About Website islamqa.info About our site
  8. ^ About Website islamqa.info About our site
  9. ^ About Website islamqa.info About our site
  10. ^ Alexa website: IslamQA retrieved February 5, 2013
  11. ^ Alexa website: IslamQA retrieved August 4, 2015
  12. ^ Alexa website: "Top Sites in: All Categories > Society > Religion and Spirituality > Islam" retrieved July 31, 2015
  13. ^ a b c Greenberg, Jon (7 October 2014). "Obeidallah: Saudi Arabia is the only Muslim nation where women can't drive". Punditfact. Retrieved 2 May 2016.
  14. ^ Nomani, Asra Q.; Arafa, Hala (11 October 2015). "Inside the World of Gulf State Slavery". Daily Beast. Retrieved 2 May 2016.
  15. ^ "Does the ruling on driving a car vary from one country to another? - islamqa.info". islamqa.info.
  16. ^ "Saudi Women Are Taking the Wheel as Longstanding Driving Ban Ends". Time. Retrieved 2018-07-25.
  17. ^ Knipp, Kersten (10 January 2016). "Women in Islam: Behind the veil and in front of it". DW. Retrieved 2 May 2016.
  18. ^ "Ruling on having intercourse with a slave woman when one has a wife - Islamqa.info". islamqa.info. Archived from the original on 6 January 2016.
  19. ^ "The punishment for homosexuality - islamqa.info". islamqa.info.
  20. ^ MCCARTHY, ANDREW C. (14 August 2013). "Obama's Gay-Rights Hypocrisy". National Review. Retrieved 2 May 2016.
  21. ^ "Saudi Arabia blocks 'Islam Question and Answer'," Al Arabiya (in Arabic), September 2, 2010
  22. ^ Christopher Boucek, "Saudi Fatwa Restrictions and the State-Clerical Relationship," Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, October 27, 2010 (accessed November 18, 2013).

External links[edit]