Questions On Qurban

Edited by: Norwariza Mohd. Hed

B.A (Hons) Syariah Islamiah, Al-Azhar, Egypt

Questions

Ibadah Qurban in Islam

The different types of Qurban

When should the Qurban be performed and the kinds of sacrificial animals

Performing Qurban for family members

Appointing someone else to perform one’s Qurban

Eating the meat of the sacrificial animal

Distributing the meat of the sacrificial animal

Ibadah Qurban in Islam

  1. What is the Hukum of the ibadah Qurban?

  2. What are the dalil ( religious basis based on the authoritative sources) for the performance of the Qurban?

  3. What are the benefits of performing the Qurban?

  4. What are the wisdoms of Qurban?

  5. Was Qurban performed during the times of the early prophets and how was it performed?

  6. Can the niyah ( conscious intentions ) while slaughtering an animal for Qurban be combined

with the ibadah of Aqiqah?

  1. Who are those exhorted to perform the Qurban?

  2. What kind of Qurban is prohibited in Islam?

 

The different types of Qurban

  1. What are the different types of Qurban?

  2. What is meant by Qurban Nazar?

  3. What is meant by Qurban Wajib?

 

When should the Qurban be performed and the kinds of sacrificial animals

 

  1. What are the times allowed to slaughter an animal for Qurban?

  2. Which is better : a male or female animal for Qurban?

  3. Can a single cow be shared by a number of persons to perform the Qurban?

  4. Can a person fulfill the requirements of Qurban by buying and distributing a kilogram of meat?

  5. Can a monetary donation substitute the slaughtering of an animal for Qurban?

  6. Which is better: a lamb/goat or one seventh of a cow for Qurban?

  7. Can a person perform Qurban with a single goat for his whole family?

  8. Can a person share with his friend to buy a goat for Qurban?

  9. Can a person slaughter a bird for Qurban as he cannot afford a goat or a cow?

  10. Is a person who is travelling required to perform Qurban?

Performing Qurban for family members

 

  1. Can I perform Qurban for my child while his Aqiqah has not been performed yet?

  2. Which should be performed first for a child – Qurban or Aqiqah?

  3. Can I perform Qurban for my parents who has died?

  4. Can I perform Qurban for my child who has died?

  5. Can we perform Qurban for a person without his knowledge?

Appointing someone else to perform one’s Qurban

  1. Should a person personally slaughter his own sacrificial animal for Qurban?

  2. Can a person appoint somebody else to perform his Qurban at a distant location?

  3. Can a person appoint somebody else to slaughter his Qurban animal?

 

Eating the meat of the sacrificial animal

  1. Can a person eat the meat of his own sacrificial animal for Qurban Nazar?

  2. Can we eat the meat of our own sacrificial animal for Qurban?

  3. Can the meat of the sacrificial animal for Qurban be sold?

  4. Can the skin of the sacrificial animal for Qurban be sold?

  5. There is a view that we should eat a portion of the meat of the Qurban animal, can we decide to distribute all of the meat?

 

Distributing the meat of the sacrificial animal

  1. Can a portion of the meat or the skin of the Qurban animal be given to the slaughterer of the animal in lieu of his service?

  2. To whom should the meat of the Qurban animal be distributed to?

  3. Can a non-muslim be a receipient of the Qurban meat?

  4. What is the hukum in inviting a non-muslim to partake in a feast of cooked Qurban meat?

  5. Can a person have a share or two in an animal intended for Qurban without having intentions to participate in the ibadah?

QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS

Ibadah Qurban in Islam

  1. What is the Hukum of the ibadah Qurban?

Qurban, Korban or Udhiyah is a religious act that entails the sacrifice of approved animals on the 10, 11, 12 and 13 Zulhijjah of the Hijri Calender with the conscious intentions of fulfilling Allah’s commandments. This act of sacrifice on the Eidul Adha that falls on the 10th of Zulhijjah and the three days of tasyriq ( 11, 12 and 13th of Zulhijjah) is sunnah muakkadah (highly encouraged to be almost obligatory) according to the Shafei’ school of jurispudence for those who can afford it and it is makruh (objectionable) not to perform it.

 

 

 

  1. What are the dalil ( religious basis based on the authoritative sources) for the performance of the Qurban?

“ Therefore to thy Lord, Turn in Prayer, and Sacrifice” Al-Kautsar:2

Yusuf Ali’s commentary: He who grants this blessings is Allah, and to Allah alone must we turn in adoration and thanksgiving, and in sacrifice. Nahr=sacrifice: in a restricted sense, the sacrifice of camels: see n. 2813 to surah al-Hajj:36. But the ritual is a mere Symbol. Behind it is a deep meaning: the meat slaughtered feeds the poor, and the slaughter is a symbol of the self-sacrifice in our hearts. “It is not their meat nor their blood, that reaches Allah: it is your piety that reaches Him.” Al-Hajj:37.

 

Prayer in the above verse refers to prayer on Eidul adha and Nahr refers to sacrifice. Imam Ibnu Jarir elaborates: “ Make your prayer with a focussed intentions of seeking Allah’s pleasure without any ulterior material hopes. So be it with the sacrifice you are performing – an act of subservience to Allah only and not to any idols, as a celebration of thanksgiving for all the infinite blessings that Allah has bestowed upon you.”

 

  1. What are the benefits performing the Qurban?

In a hadith narrated by at-Tirmidzi, Ibnu Majah and Hakim, the Prophet s.a.w said :

“There is no act by the sons of Adam on Eidul Adha that is more pleasing to Allah then by the outpouring of blood ( the slaughter of the sacrificial animal). Verily the sacrificial animal will come on the day of judgement with its horn, hooves and skin and Allah will grant the blessings of the Qurban even before the blood of the animal reaches the ground. Therefore, make good your Qurban.”

  1. What are the wisdoms of Qurban?

Only Allah knows all the wisdom that is contained in the ibadah of Qurban. As this act is closely related with the commandment of Allah that prophet Ibrahim a.s sacrifice his son Ismail a.s, we can derive the following understandings:

  1. It is ultimately a test of one’s faith and preserverence in fulfilling the commandment of God.

  2. No one truly believes until he is able to sacrifice that which he loves. The love of wealth and material things is put in its place when we are able to spend our earnings to fulfill this ibadah.

  3. The sharing of meat with the poor and needy develops empathy among all muslims with sufferings of the ummah.

  4. Mass celebration of this commandment of Allah at one particular time all over the world emphasize the unity of the ummah and continous historical strand of Islam with the prophets of Old.

 

  1. Was Qurban performed during the times of the early prophets and how was it performed?

Various practices of Qurban were reported from the times of Adam a.s till the last prophet Muhammad s.a.w :

The story af the two sons of Adam – Habil and Qabil – establishes the pivotal role of the act of Qurban in establishing one’s worth in the sight of God: “Recite to them the truth, Of the story of the two sons of Adam. Behold they each presented a sacrifice ( to Allah ): It was accepted from one, But not from the other. Said the latter: “Be sure I will slay thee.” “Surely,”said the former, “Allah doth accept of the sacrifice Of those who are righteous.”al-Maidah : 27

 

Noah a.s was reported to allocate a special area where the acts of Qurban were performed after the great floods.

 

The Qur’an narrated the story of Ibrahim a.s and his son Ismail a.s in ash-Shaffat : 102-107 as an embodiment of the ultimate acts of sacrifice by the two prophets.

 

During the times of Moses a.s the sacrificial animals were divided into two – one group is set free while the other undergoes the ritual slaughter.

 

In the intervening years, corruption of the ibadah Qurban with practices that cannot be justified on the basis of love and consciousness of God flourish. Even the act of human sacrifice with the justification of placating ‘the gods’ were documented by many civilizations. With the advent of the teachings of Muhammad s.a.w, not only the philosophy and principles were purified, the detailed procedure of slaughtering of the animal was even prescribed to minimize the sufferings of the sacrificial animal.

 

  1. Can the niyah ( conscious intentions ) while slaughtering an animal for Qurban be combined

with the ibadah Aqiqah?

According to the Hanbali jurispudence : If it so happen that Eidul Adha is also the 7th day of the birth of a baby ( when it is sunnah to perform the Aqiqah ) then it is allowable to combine the two niyah i.e for the performance of Qurban and also the Aqiqah.

 

  1. Who are those exhorted to perform the Qurban?

The emphasis is on those muslims of sufficient means to perform the Qurban. A stark reminder is given by the prophet s.a.w : “For those who are able but do not perform the Qurban, it is not proper for him to be near our prayers areas.”

 

  1. What kind of Qurban is prohibited in Islam?

The ibadah Qurban is intrinsicly linked to being subservient to the will of God and an act of taqarrub i.e. to be near Allah s.w.t. Any act that involves sacrificial animals or the flow of blood that is not as prescribed by the prophet is prohibited by Islam. This can be at two levels – the level of conscious intentions and the methods of performing the Qurban. If the intentions involve the occult or material gains then the soul cannot be brought nearer to God. As in all Islamic rituals, the prescribed methods of performing the Qurban are well established based on the sources of Islamic jurisprudence. Deviations from the norm are highly suspected and need to be questioned.

 

The different types of Qurban

  1. What are the different types of Qurban?

There are two types: The first is the prescribed Qurban that is to be performed on the Eidul Adha or the three days of Tasriq - altogether on four particular days i.e. on the 10, 11, 12 and 14th of Zulhijjah of the Hijri calendar. The second is Qurban Nazar which is obligatory as it is a promise to God normally as a consequence of a desirable outcome in one’s life.

 

  1. What is meant by Qurban Nazar?

Qurban Nazar is an obligatory act of sacrificing an animal. It is a consequence of a promise made to God to perform such a Qurban if a particular desirable outcome occurs in one’s life. Imam Nawawi even discusses the case of a person specifying the time of the sacrifice but misses it due to a memory lapse – he is still obligated to fulfill such a sacrifice even though the time has lapsed.

 

  1. What is meant by Qurban Wajib?

According to the Shafie’ jurispudence the prescribed Qurban is sunnah muakkadah. However it becomes wajib (obligatory) when one’s specifically say that “this animal is for the Qurban” or “I bought this animal for the Qurban.” During the prescribed four days it is obligatory for him to sacrifice the animal.

 

 

When should the Qurban be performed and the kinds of sacrificial animals

 

  1. What are the times allowed to slaughter an animal for Qurban?

The allowable period for the performance of Qurban begins when the khatib leaves the pulpit after the sermon on Eidul Adha in the morning of the 10th of Zulhijjah till the sun sets on the 13th of Zulhijjah of the Hijri calender. Hence there are 4 days for the performance of the ritual slaughter of Qurban. Any slaughter of an animal outside these 4 days is not Qurban.

The prophet s.a.w says in a hadith narrated by Muslim and al-Bukhari: “Those who have slaughtered their Qurban before the prayers of Eidul Adha, have to make a substitute slaughter. And for those who have not slaughtered till I have prayed,let him begin his slaughter with the name of Allah.”

Most major jurists agree to the sayings of Ali r.a as cited by Imam Nawawi in his Syarah Muslim : “The days to slaughter are the day of Udhiyah (Eidul Adha) and the three days after it.”

 

  1. Which is better: a male or female animal for Qurban?

Both genders are acceptable for Qurban. Imam Syafie’ prefers the male. For a free ranging animal the possibility of a female animal being pregnant is ever present.

 

  1. Can a single cow be shared by a number of persons to perform the Qurban?

A cow or a camel can be shared by 7 persons or households as narrated by Muslim: “During Hajj, Rasulullah s.a.w exhorted us to share 7 persons to camel or a cow.”

 

  1. Can a person fulfill the requirements of Qurban by buying and distributing a kilogram of meat?

Let us reflect the following story of Ibnu Abbas, a famous jurist and a cousin of Rasulullah s.a.w: During an Eidul Adha, Ibnu Abbas was seen buying some meat and it was made known it was for Qurban. He did not have the means to buy an animal for the Qurban. Seeing this, the other sahabah asked: “What are you doing son of the uncle of the prophet?” Without a tinge of hesitation, he answered, “This is the Qurban of Ibnu Abbas, the poor slave of Allah.”

 

It was also reported that Bilal Ibnu Abi Rabah and also Abu Hurairah slaughter a chicken for Qurban.

 

  1. Can a monetary donation substitute the slaughtering of an animal for Qurban?

Qurban entails the slaughtering of an animal. As such making a monetary donation in lieu of this ritual slaughter will not fulfill the requirements of Qurban. Feeding the poor are charitable actions that will perfect this ibadah of Qurban. As such feeding the poor only through monetary donations without fulfilling the act of ritual slaughter is insufficient for the completeness of Qurban.

 

  1. Which is better: a lamb/goat or one seventh of a cow for Qurban?

“It is not their meat or their blood that reaches Allah: it is your piety that reaches Him.” Al-Hajj: 37

Fundamentally it is that consciousness of God in fulfilling the acts of Qurban that will delineate the worth of one’s Qurban. Naturally, the sacrificial animal chosen should reflect this – hence the prohibition of choosing too thin of an animal or significantly impaired animal. Beyond this a muslim is left too his discretion (which then of course will be dictated by his state of iman) to choose the kind of animal for his Qurban. As a guide the jurists agreed that a healthy animal that will provide more meat should be chosen.

 

  1. Can a person perform Qurban with a single goat for his whole family?

Sharing of an animal for the whole family has been the practice of the prophet and his companions.

In a hadith narrated by Ibnu Majah and Tirmidzi : “ During the times of the prophet, Qurban by sacrificing a male sheep was performed by a person for his whole family. They eat from it, and share it till others are satisfied and thus you see the practice as it is now.”

As-Syaukani in Al-Raudlah 2:210 says: “The command to perform Qurban indicates it is mandatory. This command is directed to the head of the family as it is mandatory for him to fulfill it for each member of the family. And for those without a family, or a family of which he is responsible, then the Qurban will be performed for himself.”

 

 

 

  1. Can a person share with his friend to buy a goat for Qurban?

The jurists have concurred that a goat/sheep can represent the Qurban for a single person: for himself or his family of which he is the head of that family. It is virtuous for two friends to share the expenses to buy a goat as a sacrificial animal for Qurban. But then, they have to decide for whom the Qurban should be performed. The sunnah is specific as to the number of persons that can share a particular animal for Qurban.

 

  1. Can a person slaughter a bird for Qurban as he cannot afford a goat or a cow?

The major schools of jurisprudence in Islam has specified specific four-legged animals such as the goat, sheep, cow or camel as being valid to be chosen for Qurban. But there are opinions and practices among the jurists that allow the slaughter of birds that are associated with human food such as the chicken, goose or turkey. Normally these birds are chosen when one cannot afford the more expensive four-legged animal or when there are issues of availability of such animals. The spirit is to fulfill the commandments of God during the times associated with Qurban.

 

 

  1. Is a person who is travelling required to perform Qurban?

Performing Qurban is incumbent on all Muslims even though they are travelling as practised by the prophet when he slaughtered a cow as Qurban for his wives in Mina (narrated by Bukhari and Muslim). However Abu Hanifah is of the opinion that travellers are not incumbent to perform the Qurban as it is not incumbent for travellers to perform Juma’ah prayers when they are travelling.

 

Performing Qurban for family members

 

  1. Can I perform Qurban for my child while his Aqiqah has not been performed yet?

The child is the responsibility of the parents which include the responsibility of performing the Qurban and the Aqiqah for the child especially so for parents who have the financial means. If one has the intention to perform Qurban for the child then perform it but one must also bear in mind that performing Aqiqah is a personal injunction for a child that need to be performed by the parents as early as 7 days from the date of birth.

 

  1. Which should be performed first for a child – Qurban or Aqiqah?

Definitely Aqiqah should be performed first. Firstly, performing Aqiqah is a personal injunction for a child that needs to be performed by the parents as early as 7 days from the date of birth. Secondly, the responsibility of performing the Qurban is fulfilled for the whole family if the head of the family performed it – there is no need to perform Qurban specifically for the child unless it is Qurban Nazar of course. If Aqiqah has been performed and the parents can afford it, then Qurban for each member of the family can be performed by the head of the family.

 

If the prescribed day of the aqiqah falls on the days of the Qurban then the sacrificial animal can be slaughtered with the niyah for Aqiqah and Qurban simultaneously.

 

  1. Can I perform Qurban for my parents who have died?

The prayers and deeds of a pious child for his parents are accepted by Allah s.w.t – whether the parents are already dead or are still alive. According to the Hanafi and Hanbali School of jurisprudence it is allowable for a child to perform Qurban for his dead parents. And let the child pray that the Qurban he performed for his parents is accepted by Allah and the good deeds that flow will be a blessing for his parents in the Day of Judgment.

 

  1. Can I perform Qurban for my child who has died?

Islam recognizes the spiritual link between parents and child. As such the blessings of good deeds performed by one can be shared by the other. Let the parents make prayers to Allah that the elements of sacrifice and charitable sharing of meat that is inherent in the ibadah Qurban performed by the parents for his child will be accepted by Allah s.w.t.

 

 

  1. Can we perform Qurban for a person without his knowledge?

The completeness of an ibadah or Islamic rituals requires a conscious intention of performing such a ritual besides performing it in the prescribed manner. This condition is not fulfilled if a person has no knowledge that a Qurban has been performed on his behalf. This requirement is not necessary if it is performed for members of one’s household but even then it will be better that they are informed – the idea is that such rituals bring one nearer to Allah and a conscious act will definitely helps.

 

 

Appointing someone else to perform one’s Qurban

  1. Should a person personally slaughter his own sacrificial animal for Qurban?

It is virtuous (sunat) if one can slaughter his own sacrificial animal for Qurban but it is permissible for him to ask someone else to do this duty. As narrated by Ahmad and Muslim, “The Prophet s.a.w performed Qurban on 100 camels: 63 of which he slaughtered personally and 37 others he gave Ali ibni Abi Talib r.a to complete it.”

 

 

  1. Can a person appoint somebody else to perform his Qurban at a distant location?

It is a common practice to appoint somebody else to perform one’s Qurban – it can be the committee of the local mosque, a local goat or cattle rearing business or relevant authorities as being the case in Makkah when huge number of sheep were slaughtered for the pilgrims. This is allowable so as to allow more muslims to participate in this ibadah.

In the kitab I’anah ath-Thalibin: 2/381, Asy-Syeikh Muhammad bin Sulaiman al-Kudri was asked : “It has been the custom of the inhabitants of the Malay Archipelago to appoint someone to buy na’am (like sheep and cow) in Makkah for Aqiqah and Qurban, and the slaughter was done in Makkah, while the one participating in that Aqiqah and Qurban is still in their countries in the Malay Archipelago. Is this practice permissible in Islam? Please issue a religious edict (fatwa) for us.”

The Syeikh answered: “Yes! The practice is valid and it is permissible to appoint a representative to buy an animal and likewise slaughter it for Aqiqah and Qurban. Even if it done in a distant country, i.e not of the country of those participating in the Aqiqah and Qurban.”

 

  1. Can a person appoint somebody else to slaughter his Qurban animal?

It is virtuous to slaughter one’s own Qurban. However for those unable to perform it, then it is permissible to appoint somebody else to do it.

In the kitab Sabil al-Muhtadin: 214, Syeikh Muhammad bin Sulaiman says, “It is permissible to buy the animal for Qurban in another country and to slaughter and distribute the meat thereof to the poor in that country. Be it that country is Makkah or any other country... verily those who appoints shall make clear his conscious intentions to the one to be appointed.”

 

 

Eating the meat of the sacrificial animal

  1. Can a person eat the meat of his own sacrificial animal for Qurban Nazar?

If the Qurban performed is a consequence of a nazar ( i.e a promise made to God ) then it is not allowable for that person to partake the meat of the Qurban. All the meat shall be distributed to the poor and needy.

 

 

  1. Can we eat the meat of our own sacrificial animal for Qurban?

A portion of the meat can be eaten by those who performed the Qurban. Ibnu Abbas when elaborating the ways of the Prophet with regard to Qurban, said: “The Prophet gave a third to his own family, a third to his neighbours and a third to those who asks.”

 

 

  1. Can the meat of the sacrificial animal for Qurban be sold?

The element of Qurban is sacrifice: partaking a portion of it for charitable feeding of the poor is an integral part of it. This allows all segments of the ummah to participate in this religious festival as a celebration of man’s fulfillment of God’s commandments. Selling the meat does not conform to the spirit of the ibadah; what more if the selling of it is for the profit motive.

 

 

  1. Can the skin of the sacrificial animal for Qurban be sold?

To profit personally from the sale of the skin is prohibited in Islam. But according to Abu Hanifa the skin can be sold and the proceeds given to the needy and poor. This is especially so if the skin is going to be thrown away without bringing benefit to the poor. During the times of the Prophet the skin is usually used for household usages. Narrated by Ahmad, that the prophet said,”... Eat the meat and distribute it charitably and as for the skin make use of it...”

 

 

  1. There is a view that we should eat a portion of the meat of the Qurban animal, can we decide to distribute all of the meat?

The sunnah is a third of the meat is for the household who perform the Qurban, a third for the neighbour and friends and the final third for the needy and poor. But then there is a hadith narrated by Bukhari and Muslim from Salim r.a : “Let not one of you keeps the meat of the Qurban for more than 3 days.” More than 3 days of meat supply indicate that the portion of the household cannot be to such an extent that the need of the poor has not been addressed adequately.

 

In today’s global village we have arrived to a situation where the meat of the Qurban can only be distributed amongst the sufficient. There is great difficulty to even locate the local poor. At the same time at a distant place vast pockets of the ummah do not even have the bare minimum to survive with dignity. It is time that we also perform Qurban at these places (while still performing it at a sufficient level at our own place).

 

 

 

Distributing the meat of the sacrificial animal

  1. Can a portion of the meat or the skin of the Qurban animal be given to the slaughterer of the animal in lieu of his service?

This is not allowed according to the sunnah of the Prophet s.a.w as narrated by Bukhari and Muslim from Ali r.a: “We compensate the service of those who slaughter the animal from our own resources.”

Other means must be found if there is a need to pay the service of those involved as long as it does not include the parts of the sacrificial animal.

 

  1. To whom should the meat of the Qurban animal be distributed to?

The sunnah is a third of the meat is for household, a third for neighbour and friends and

the final third for the poor and needy. But it is also a sunnah to give preference to the poor and needy: “...then eat ye Thereof and feed the distressed Ones in want.” al-Hajj: 28.

It has also been reported by al-Baihaqi that the Prophet S.A.W ate the liver of the Qurban animal.

 

 

  1. Can a non-muslim be a recipient of the Qurban meat?

The act of performing the Qurban is a personal act of which we will be judged by Allah s.w.t

by the degree of our taqwa (god-consciousness) in performing that act. Another aspect of taqwa is the social consciousness whereby the meat thereof is shared with the community as being prescribed by God. The Hanbali Jurispudence allows the sharing of the Qurban meat with the non-muslims but if it is Qurban Nazar then only Muslims can partake of it.

 

 

  1. What is the hukum in inviting a non-muslim to partake in a feast of cooked Qurban meat?

The act of performing the Qurban is a personal act of which we will be judged by Allah s.w.t

by the degree of our taqwa (god-consciousness) in performing that act. Another aspect of taqwa is the social consciousness whereby the meat thereof is shared with the community as being prescribed by God. The Hanbali Jurisprudence allows the sharing of the Qurban meat with the non-muslims but if it is Qurban Nazar then only Muslims can partake of it. The same is true if a feast is prepared from the cooked meat.

 

 

  1. Can a person have a share or two in an animal intended for Qurban without having intentions to participate in the ibadah?

The act of Qurban entails the slaughter of particular animals during the specified days with

the proper conscious intentions. But there is an opinion in the Syafie’ jurispudence that allows the sharing of portions that is not intended for the act of Qurban in the designated animal for Qurban.

 

References:

 

  1. Al-Iqna’ Fi Halli Alfaz Abi Syuja’ – Khotib Syarbini

  2. Fiqh Islami – Wahbah Az-Zuhaili

  3. Fiqh As-Sunnah – Sayyid Sabiq

  4. Sirajul Wahhaj ‘Ala Matnil Minhaj Lil Imam Nawawi

  5. Korban & Aqiqah – Haji Ahmad Fuad Said

  6. Panduan Aqiqah, Khatan & Korban – Muhammad Isa Selamat

  7. Ibadat Korban, Hukum & Cara Pengendaliannya – Jabatan Mufti Kerajaan Negara Brunei Darussalam

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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