Islamic Terminology Regarding Halal & Haram

Here is a list of the terminology used by Islamic scholors in reference to halal and haram in Islam.

Halal That which Allah and the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) have allowed to be done in a lawful manner.

Haram that which Allah and the Prophet have completely and specifcally forbidden. Engaging in an act that is Haram (i.e. eating food like pork, drinking alcohol, having sex outside of marriage) would lead to punishment in the Next Life, and maybe even in this Life.

Makrouh Something that is not liked. Also defined as offensive.

Mashbooh questionable or doubtful.

Mushtabahat This is described as the “grey area” that is found between Halal and Haram. It has also been defined as questionable.

It is based on the Hadith: What is Halal is clear and what is Haram is clear. Midway between them are things which people do not know whether they are Halal or Haram. He who keeps away from them will protect his religion and will be saved. He who aproaches them is very near to Haram, like a shepherd wandering his flock near Hima (protected grazing land), who could soon enter the forbidden area, and Allah’s protected area is what He has declared forbidden.”

Makrouh Tahrimi This is a category of Makruh, and is defined as offensive in the extreme, and close to the Haram.

Makrouh Tanzihi Another category of Makruh. It is defined as less offensive, but still extremely distasteful.

Tayyibat This refers to all things which are made halal for Muslims.

ThabihaAn animal slaughtered (or the process of slaughtering) according to the Islamic method without which flesh of a halal animal is not lawful for the food of a Muslim.

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