Confusion Ended: “Thanksgiving is a Day of Gratitude Observed by Most Muslims” [?]

In the Name of Allaah, the Most Gracious, the Ever Merciful…

Thanksgiving Day is a modern Christian religious holiday observed on the fourth Thursday of November in America. Thanksgiving has been adopted as a national holiday as well.

The Permanent Council of Scholars in Saudi Arabia, headed by Shaykh ‘Abdul-‘Azeez ibn Baaz (may Allaah have Mercy on him), was asked about the observance of Christian religious holidays, and they responded:

It is not permissible to take part with the disbelievers in their holidays and religious celebrations, due to the description Allah has given to the servants of the Most-Merciful [what means]: ( Those who do not witness “zoor”, and if they pass by falsehood, they pass by it with dignity ). [25:72] “Zoor” is explained to be: the celebrations of the disbelievers and witnessing them, attending them, or taking part in them.

Source: The Permanent Council’s second series of Fatwas (1/452-453). [in Arabic here]

Many other clear statements of the scholars about non-Muslim holidays and celebrations have been made widely available in English.

Aside from being a Christian holiday, Thanksgiving is commonly represented by images depicting the “peace” made between the Native Americans and the European pilgrims who arrived in early America. The bitter reality of true American history stands in stark contrast to the re-written politically correct version promoted by the Americans today. Before European settlers arrived, America had an entire civilization of people living on its land. The Europeans invaded, pillaged, and occupied this land. They fought against its original inhabitants and conquered them, in an attempted mass-genocide of an entire race. They conveniently re-write this terrible reality as a cheerful peace agreement including the sharing of the crops’ harvest in a warm and friendly dinner celebration called “Thanksgiving”. To this day, they still credit Europeans with “discovering” America (a previously inhabited land!). Sadly, many Americans refuse to investigate the real criminal history of their own land. Even more sadly, some Muslims choose to take part in such a vile conspiracy by observing this day alongside the misguided Christians!

Muslims have a complete Religion, rich with daily offerings of honest worship, thanking and praising Allah alone. Muslims have no need to blindly follow the ungrateful and stingy disbelievers who set aside one day a year to give thanks to their gods, paired with a conspiracy to re-write their treacherous criminal history.

“Most Muslims Feel Comfortable in Sharing Thanksgiving” [?]

Even if it were true that most Muslims in America or anywhere else feel comfortable celebrating a Christian holiday, that could never be a proof for its legitimacy in Islam.

It is hoped that most Muslims who know their Religion and seek to please their Lord are not involved in the disbelievers’ festivals and holidays in any way whatsoever. Confused and ignorant Muslims who would fall into such clear violation of Islamic teachings, even if they are many, do not constitute a proof, nor could we conclude that their action means that scholars must have differed about it.

What the majority of the people, Muslims or non-Muslims, feel about a topic has no place in a discussion on the rulings of Islam.

وإن تطع أكثر من في الأرض يضلوك عن سبيل الله
( If you were to obey most people on earth they would lead you away from the Path of Allah ) [6:116]

For further study of Allah’s descriptions of how the majority do not believe, understand, reflect, nor give thanks, read the following Quranic verses: 2:243, 7:17,187, 10:60, 11:17, 12:21,38,40,68,103,106, 16:38, 17:89, 25:50, 27:61, 30:6,30, 34:28,36, 40:57,61, 45:26.

This article was adapted from: “Yusuf Estes: Most Muslims Feel Comfortable Sharing Thanksgiving with Non-Muslims” (found here)

Written by: Moosaa Richardson

13 thoughts on “Confusion Ended: “Thanksgiving is a Day of Gratitude Observed by Most Muslims” [?]

  1. As salamu alaikum may Alllah keep us firm upon what’s he created [sent down] and left the believers with the Quran & Sunnah…….Ameen [message ammended by admin]

    • Assalamu alaykum
      I hope I’m not getting he wrong end of the stick but the wording of the above comment makes it seem like Allah Created the Quran when of course it isn’t.

  2. As salaamu Alaaykum Waa rahmatullahi waa baarakthu,

    May Allaah reward you for the clarification, Baarak Allaahu Feek.

    How can one reply to a jaahil who jumps and brings up [Muslim countries] celebrating National holiday and making it a holiday for country? I tried explaining that it is still not from Sunnah but every time I tell them not to practise the disbeliever holidays (thanksgiving or national days etc), but they run to bring in bad talks about [Muslims of a certain nationality]. Is it best to ignore such a individual?… [message slightly edited by admin]

  3. As’salaamu alaikum, I’m sorry to bother you, but I have a question for clarity. Insha’allah do you know the ruling on visiting family a day or so after they have celebrated their holiday to take advantage of time the may have off from or school. Example: visting with family member the day after Thanksgiving or Christmas, only because it’s day all have off from work and you can enjoy their company without having to work the next day (especially for those who work over weekend)? I want to be clear, that the non muslim family has already completed their celebration. We’re not talking about instances of multiday festivies.

    jazakallahu khirin

  4. My comment is on race in Islam why is it in Islam that we don’t speak of the race issues that take place in this religion and how badly the Muslims of color are treated… [comment abridged by admin]

    • Ahmad, welcome to and may Allaah bless you and increase you in goodness! Racism and nationalism is shameful jaahiliyyah, and it is something I’ve heard my scholars warn against, and the scholars of the past have warned against extensively. In my 16-year stay in Saudi Arabia, I heard some amazingly effective khutbahs warning the people against the mistreatment of others based on color, race, nationality, etc. It is a human problem that the Muslims confront head-on. I, for one, am upon certain knowledge that the statement “We don’t speak of the race issues…” is inaccurate. May Allaah purify our hearts and the hearts of all our brothers and sisters worldwide and rid us of nationalism, racism, and all forms of jaahiliyyah. Often, people who do not understand the basics of their Religion consider impermissible character flaws like racism to be something greater than even polytheism! To be clear, that Muslim brother whose intellect is so deficient that he views himself as better than others based on color or nationality, he is in fact your flawed Muslim brother; while that polytheist who struggles for certain forms of social justice and equality, while you may thank him for some work he has done which benefits people, he is absolutely NOT your brother, as he associates partners with Allaah! And Allaah knows best.

  5. Assalamu Alaykum […]

    We Muslims don’t need to reserve a single day for Thanksgiving. We like to spend every day of our life giving thanks.

    If you see me giving thanks on the Thanksgiving day of others, it’s not about me joining in. I simply wouldn’t ever skip a day and, in sha Allaah, I’d start the next day doing it again, and everyone would be as welcome on that day too, and the next, and the next. Every day is Thanksgiving Day. [message truncated by admin]

    • Wa ‘alayk as-salaamu wa rahmatullaah. Of course, Muslims are thankful to Allaah on the last Thursday in November of the Christian calendar, as they are required to be grateful every day. So, yes indeed, we must continue to express our thanks to our Magnificent Creator even on Thanksgiving Day, and we do that by opposing the customs of the non-Muslims and their holidays, in a show of gratitude and thanks for our perfect and complete Religion. من تشبه بقوم فهو منهم “Whoever imitates a people is from them,” as our Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alayhe wa sallam) said. We thank Allaah for sending him to humanity, and we ask Allaah to make us from His thankful slaves, those who truly follow this great Messenger and his teachings.

      Our ‘Eeds (yearly celebrations) are part of our perfect Deen which we thank Allaah for, and from our gratitude to our Lord is that we love His Speech and learn its meanings. He said: (والذين لا يشهدون الزور وإذا مروا باللغو مروا كراما) “And those who do not witness falsehood, and when they pass by some frivolity, they pass by with nobility”. A number of the scholars of Tafseer from the early imaams of the Taabi’een who studied under the Companions said: This “Zoor” (falsehood) is the holidays of the non-Muslims!

      So yes indeed, a Muslim is thankful to Allaah on Thanksgiving Day, by shunning any level of participation in Zoor, faithful to his Lord and His Book, embracing the Guidance which has been sent down. What an ironic fail – that a Muslim thinks celebrating a non-Muslim holiday can be an expression of his thanks to Allaah! In reality, he is ungrateful to Allaah, by failing to show the distinctness of guidance by avoiding falsehood, and by imitating non-Muslims in their celebrations!

      And the noble Companion, ‘Abdullaah ibn ‘Amr, may Allaah be pleased with him, said: من بنى ببلاد الأعاجم فصنع نيروزهم ومهرجانهم وتشبه بهم حتى يموت وهو كذلك حشر معهم يوم القيامة “Whoever builds (a house, takes residence) in the lands of the foreigners, takes part in their holidays and celebrations, and imitates them, doing this until he dies (i.e. not repenting), he shall be raised among them on the Day of Judgment.” The matter is indeed a very serious one!

      Please contemplate the matter carefully, based upon the Light which has come from Allaah, how it was understood and practiced by the great early carriers of it. May Allaah guide the Muslims away from Thanksgiving and all forms of falsehood, and bless them with love and appreciation of His Guidance in Truth. And Allaah knows best.

      • Ameen Ameen ya Rabbil Alameen

        Besides it being imitation of the kuffaar to join their celebrations (which is reason enough to not do it), it’s a veritable feast (the object is reclining to eat, and overeating is not uncommon, even considered sympathetic) and it entails strengthening of the relationship of friendship, love and brotherhood (with the kuffar!)… Several aspects of it go against the Sunnah, and with these intentions this would already be haraam in case of a ‘regular’ dinner invitation from a kaafir.

        “You (O Muhammad) will not find any people who believe in Allaah and the Last Day, making friendship with loving those who oppose Allaah and His Messenger (Muhammad), even though they were their fathers or their sons or their brothers or their kindred (people). For such He has written Faith in their hearts, and strengthened them with Rooh (proofs, light and true guidance) from Himself. And He will admit them to Gardens (Paradise) under which rivers flow, to dwell therein (forever). Allaah is pleased with them, and they with Him. They are the party of Allaah. Verily, it is the party of Allaah that will be the successful” [Meaning of: al-Mujaadilah 58:22]

        The Muslims who already don’t limit these relations to selling and buying, calling people to Allaah, or for the sake of the position of Muslims in their society, are the same who might not see the harm in joining the actual celebrations. Their problem is actually deeper than just that. As you said, “The matter is indeed a very serious one!”

        Some of those who are more aware of this still sponsor the festivities though: Many Muslims congratulate kuffaar on their occasions or offer help in setting up, or even provide food for these occasions as a gift. “Shunning ANY level of participation in Zoor” also means refraining from that. Instead we should make clear that we have other ways and that that is a good reason to reject theirs. We give thanks every day and every part of the day. We should neither join nor sponsor any other way… [message slightly truncated and edited by admin]

  6. As-salaamu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullaah,

    Regarding the meat which is slaughtered by Ahlul-Kitaab, is it halaal in all cases? For example: What if the butchers don’t properly drain the blood from the animal?

    This is part b to the question: Is it our job to ask the restaurants owned by Ahlul-Kitaab such specific questions? Would that be a form of overcomplicating a matter which Allaah made easy for us?

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