Playing the Guitar as a Hobby
Fatwa No: 81545

Question

Is it legal in Islam to play the guitar as a hobby?

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.

Allah Says (what means): {And of the people is he who buys the amusement of speech to mislead [others] from the way of Allah without knowledge and who takes it in ridicule. Those will have a humiliating punishment.} [Quran 31:6]

This verse is an explanatory apposition of what proceeds it which explains the state of the good-doers who perform the prayer, give Zakat and sincerely believe in the Hereafter. Allah mentioned that those who refuse to profit from Allah’s words, and who prefer listening to music and songs will be humiliated in Hellfire. According to Ibn Katheer, al-Hassan al-Basri explained the above verse [i.e. Quran 31:6] that it was revealed about singing and music. But this is only if the person is too inclined to these things. Taking singing and playing the guitar as hobbies is unlawful.

One should use instead his leisure time in lawful and useful matters in this worldly life and the Hereafter. Listening to music is forbidden for the following Hadeeth which reads: “A time will come where people will make adultery, fornication, silk, guitars and wine lawful.

Therefore, as long as listening to music was counted among these unlawful matters, it shouldn’t then be taken as a hobby.

Allah knows best.

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