Subject : Islamic Ruling on Watching Soap Operas during Ramadan
Fatwa Number : 3772
Date : 04-06-2023
Classified : Singing & Amusements
Fatwa Type : Search Fatawaa

Question :

What is the ruling of Sharia on watching soap operas during Ramadan? Does it break one`s fast and decrease its reward?

The Answer :

All perfect praise be to Allah the Lord of the Worlds. May Allah`s peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Mohammad and upon all his family and companions.

During the holy month of Ramadan, it is worthier for a Muslim to spend his/her time in worshipping Almighty Allah through making Thikr (Remembrance of Allah), reciting the glorious Quran, maitaining kinship ties, doing good, helping the poor, needy, and widows, enjoining good and forbidding evil, and making Du`a (supplication), with the hope to be admitted into Jannah.

As well known, Ramdan is very short and passes swiftly, so spending it in doing lawful things isn`t acceptable and considered self-deception; consequently, spending it in doing forbidden things is far more unacceptable. As for watching soap operas, movies and programs that include forbidden things such as uncovering Awrah (Private parts), vile talk, and forbidden mixing between the two sexes, this is forbidden by Sharia, be it during Ramadan or other months of the year. Allah the Almighty says {What means}: "Say to the believing men that they should lower their gaze and guard their modesty: that will make for greater purity for them: And God is well acquainted with all that they do." {an-Nur, 30-31}. In addition, Buraida reported God's Messenger as saying to ‘Ali, “Do not give a second look, ‘Ali, for while you are not to blame for the first you have no right to the second.” { Abu Dawud and Tirmidhi transmitted it}. "This Hadith indicates that if the look is normal and without desire then the person isn`t sinful but if it is with desire then the person incurs sin." {Ma`alim As-Sunnan, Vol.3, page:222}.

Moreover, watching such shows doesn`t nullify fasting; however, it takes away from the reward of fasting because the person is committing something forbidden while fasting. This is understood from the following Hadith: Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Prophet (PBUH) said, "If one does not eschew lies and false conduct, Allah has no need that he should abstain from his food and his drink."

[Al-Bukhari]. Moreover, It was narrated from Abu Hurairah that the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said: “There are people who fast and get nothing from their fast except hunger, and there are those who pray and get nothing from their prayer but a sleepless night.” Al-Baidawi (May Allah have mercy on him) said: "Fasting is intended to curb self`s desire for food and sex and teach it patience." {Misbah Az-Zujajah by Al-Sayooti}.

However, if the soap operas contain no violations of the limits of Sharia then it is allowed to watch them as long as they don`t contradict with mandatory acts of worship and be within reasonable limits. And Allah the Almighty knows best.





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