1. Is it permissible to send seasonal greeting cards to non-Muslims at the time of Christmas so long as there are no religious symbols on them and without the intention of celebrating or supporting Christmas?
2. Can the following from al-ashbaah be used as a justification for sending seasonal greeting cards at Christmas time?
In al-ashbaah it states that if a person says regarding a non Muslim:
“May Allah let his kingdom last for a long time” and his intention is that he may be given hidayat in future, or that the Muslims could benefit through his contributions of jizyah etc, then this is permitted.
Please provide a referenced answer.
Wa Alaikum As Salaam,
The entire celebration of Christmas is based on the beliefs of another religious group. Although it may be seen as a season that everyone becomes part of, it is based totally on a religious festival that is connected to beliefs that are totally opposing to the teachings of Islam and the truth of Prophet Jesus (A.S).
When one sends seasons’ greeting, cards etc. on account of this festival/season, he is actually showing his agreement and support for the celebration of that unIslamic festival. Even though one may not have an intention to celebrate or support Christmas, his action of sending a seasonal card or sending greetings shows that he is happy with that occasion and so, he says or does something which is connected only to that season/festival of the non Muslims.
Hence, it is not permissible for one to send seasonal greetings and cards etc. to non Muslims at the time of Christmas or on the occasion of any other religious festival. While discussing a similar issue of giving greetings to non Muslims on their religious festivals, the great scholar Maulana Mufti Khalid Saifullah Rahmani wrote, ‘Giving greetings to them is a support and an endorsement to what they are doing. It is for this reason a Muslim must refrain from this.’ After saying this, the respected scholar quoted references from Fatawa Tatar Khaniya and Fatawa Al Bazaziah to support his statement. (Kitabul Fatawa Vol. 1 Pg. 304,305 Zam Zam Publishers Karachi Pakistan).
With respect to the statement in Al Ashbah, this has no connection to what was asked. Making dua for one to be guided is permissible, and making dua to Allah for the Muslims to continue to be helped by another one is also permissible.
What you asked about was not in connection to making dua of hidayat for others, nor was it about gaining benefits from them. It was about being happy with, and endorsing the practices of their religious festivals. None of our Fuqaha (jurists) have allowed this.
And Allah Knows Best.
Mufti Waseem Khan.