Salam aleykum wa rahmatullah. May Allah bless and reward you for your efforts. My question is concerning trimming the beard. Alhamdulillah i have left my beard to grow according to the sunnah of our prophet saw but ever since i have grown my beard i have constantly been told by my family and friends to trim it as leaving the beard where i live is associated with extremists and terrorism. Every time i go out, i’m stopped and searched by the police only because of my beard and in college and when i’m out and about, people view me with suspicion and look at me like i’m a terrorist. I also get called a lot of nicknames but i try to not pay any attention to any of it but nevertheless, people bother me a lot. So my question is, can i trim the sides of my beard so that it looks neat and not as unruly and rough? And how do we reconcile between the many ahadith about leaving the beard and the hadith in which our prophet saw says “ Allah is beautiful and loves beauty” because if i trim my beard i believe it will make me more attractive and also i will be following the sunnah of leaving the beard without shaving it, so is it permissible to trim the beard or do i have to leave it be in which case it will grow on the sides a lot and won’t look as beautiful?
All perfect praise be to Allah, The Lord of the Worlds. I testify that none is worthy of worship except Allah and that Muhammad is His slave and messenger.
The authentic Sunnah commands the Muslim man to keep his beard and let it grow abundantly. However, if the beard becomes too long or too wide beyond what is normal, thus marring the appearance, many scholars held that it is permissible to trim it to restore it to a normal moderate size.
Al-Baaji said: “Ibn Al-Qaasim narrated that Maalik said, ‘There is no sin in trimming from the beard what is stray and uneven.’ Maalik was asked: ‘What if it grew too long?’ He replied: ‘I believe it should be trimmed and cut; and it was narrated that ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Umar and Abu Hurayrah used to trim from the beard what extended beyond [the length of] a fist.’” [Al-Muntaqa Sharh Al-Muwatta’]
As for the Hadeeth that reads: “Allah is beautiful and loves beauty,” and the one that reads: “Let your beard grow,” there is no contradiction between them. Beauty should be perceived within the framework of the wise Sharee’ah and not according to people’s preferences. Growing the beard does not contradict the beauty that Allah loves; rather, it is part of the beauty that Allah loves because it is part of what He prescribed.
Allah Knows best.
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