Abu Haneefah's view on the beard
Fatwa No: 332320

  • Fatwa Date:27-9-2016 - Thul-Hijjah 25, 1437
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Question

Dear Shaykh, what was Imam Abu Hanifah's, may Allaah have mercy upon him, view on the beard, and is it true that he did not speak to people who did not have beards? What do the Hanafi scholars and books say on this matter? May Allaah reward you, Shaykh.

Answer

All perfect praise be to Allaah, The Lord of the worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allaah and that Muhammad, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, is His slave and Messenger. 

Abu Haneefah  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him held that it is obligatory to let the beard grow and that it is permissible to trim what is more than a fist. The Hanafi book Al-‘Inaayah Sharh Al-Hidaayah, reads, “Abu Haneefah  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him cited the reports that support his view. For instance, it has been narrated that Ibn ‘Umar  may  Allaah  be  pleased  with  him used to trim his beard beyond a fist's length (grasping the beard with his hand and cutting what was in excess of it). Abu Haneefah, Abu Yoosuf, and Muhammad (Ibn al-Hasan)  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  them held this scholarly view.

The Hanafi book Al-Ikhtiyaar Lita‘leel Al-Mukhtaar also reads, “As for growing the beard, Muhammad narrated on the authority of Abu Haneefah that it should be left to grow and that shortening it is an act of the Sunnah. The man may hold his beard in his fist and cut what is in excess of the fist. This is because the thick, full beard is an aspect of the perfection of adornment for men and growing it too long is contrary to the Sunnah.

The Hanafi scholars held the scholarly view of Abu Haneefah  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him and underlined the prohibition of shaving what is less than a fist's length of the beard. The Hanafi scholar Ash-Shurunbulaali  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him wrote in his commentary:

It is an act of the Sunnah to grease the hair on the face if it is not done for the purpose of beautification... The beard should not be greased for the purpose of growing it longer if it is within the prescribed length, which is a fist's length, as stated in Al-Burhaan. A man should cut what is beyond a fist's length. It has been reported that the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, used to cut from his beard, from its length and width. However, none held that it is allowable to cut from the beard when it is less than a fist's length, as some Moroccans and effeminate men do. As for shaving the whole beard, this is the practice of the Magians, Jews, Indians, and some westerners (meaning Europeans), as underlined in Fat-h Al-Qadeer.

Allaah knows best.

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