In verse I have recited, our Lord Almighty (SWT) states, “O you who have believed! Do not prohibit the good things Allah has made lawful to you, and do not transgress. Indeed, Allah does not like transgressors.”1
In the hadith I have read, our Prophet (saw) says, “What is lawful is clear, and what is unlawful is also clear. And between them are matters that are not clear, about which not many people know. Thus, he who guards against the unclear matters clears himself regarding his religion and honor. But he who falls into the unclear matters falls into that which is unlawful…”2
Halal and haram are the boundaries established by our Lord (SWT) for us in this life. Halal and haram are far-reaching notions that cannot be reduced to food and drink.
Any word or action that protects the pure disposition our Lord (SWT) has bestowed upon us is halal. Everything that upsets such disposition and harms our chastity, dignity, and grace is forbidden. All the niceties by Allah’s (SWT) approval are halal. On the other hand, Haram refers to all the unsavory things that invoke His (SWT) wrath. Both halal and haram are part of the trial. Being satisfied with halal is a kind of worship, as is refraining from haram. It is a grave sin that harms one’s faith to regard halal as haram and haram as halal.
According to our religion, the authority to determine what is halal and what is haram is vested in Allah (SWT) and, with His permission, in our Prophet (saw). In the Holy Qur’an, our Lord (SWT) has taught us what is halal and what is haram. On the other hand, our Prophet (saw) showed us how to live as a believer.
We can live a peaceful life as long as we avoid evil and surround ourselves with good. The further we move away from haram, the closer we get to our Lord’s (SWT) mercy. We are elevated in the sight of Allah (SWT) as long as we keep our distance from sin.
Dear Brothers and Sisters!
Let us all say “’ameen’ wholeheartedly to our Prophet’s (saw) following supplication: ‘My Lord! Make me grateful to You, remember You, fearful of You, obedient to You and humble to You, who always supplicates You!’”3
Bukhari, Iman, 39; Muslim, Musaqat, 107.
Ibn Majah, Du’a, 2.