Impermissibility of contributing to non-Muslim religious festivals in any way
Fatwa No: 359503

Question

Assalaamu alaykum. I study in college, where the higher-posted people are non-Muslims, and the students are organising functions of their religion in which they worship idols, and they started asking for money as a contribution. I refused in the beginning, but then they again came and said that I have to give the money. I told them that I would, but I realized that this is not right, and then I again asked them questions, as I would not be participating in what they do. They said that they also give money when they do not participate in other college functions and that they participated in Iftaar (fast-breaking) parties. I did not say anything and just nodded my head, but I did not give any money to them as I went home and will only return after the function is over. I was scared that if they would keep asking for money, I would either have given it to them or fought with them, which could lead to riots or political games against me or against all those Muslims who did not give any money. That is why I ran from college. Also, one my batchmates messaged me wishing me well for the festival, so I just told them that I do not celebrate it. They started fighting with me, saying that if I cannot respect their religion, I should not say anything at all. Did I disrespect them? I never insulted their religion, as that could result in fights and me getting a bad image. If I do not insult their religion for this reason, does that make me a disbeliever or guilty of Shirk (polytheism)?

Answer

All perfect praise be to Allah, the Lord of the worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allah and that Muhammad  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) is His slave and Messenger.

It is not permissible for you to participate in the celebration of those non-Muslims, neither by paying money, nor by attending, nor by any kind of participation, because this would constitute cooperation in sin; Allah says (what means): {…but do not cooperate in sin and aggression. And fear Allah; indeed, Allah is severe in penalty.} [Quran 5:2]

If you fear any harm from them if you do not give them money, then you may complain to the relevant authorities to repel their harm off of you because the laws in force in all countries of the world prevent taking the money of a person by force and forbid threatening people.

You do not have to insult their Shirk openly or insult them. Indeed, Allah forbade insulting the gods of the polytheists so that they do not insult Allah; Allah says (what means): {And do not insult those they invoke other than Allah, lest they insult Allah in enmity without knowledge.} [Quran 6:108]

Rather, what you are Islamically obliged to do is to hate them and hate their religion and disbelief. It is not obligatory to show this hate to them by telling them that, especially if you fear to be harmed by them.

Allah knows best.

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