Astronomy and Astrology in Islam Submitted to: Dr. aziz ur rehman saifee Submitted by: Aamir Aijaz memon Submitted on: 28-march-2012 Acknowledgement All praises and thanks are for Almighty ALLAH who is the source of all knowledge and wisdom endowed to mankind and to the humanity as a whole. And a great thanks to our coordinator and instructor, Dr. Aziz-ur-Rehman Saifee. The encouragement and assistance of our parents and friends are gratefully acknowledged. Table of Contents PREFACE4 Foreword4 Literature Review4 ?Moulana Shihabuddin Nadvi4 ?Astrology vs.
Astronomy by Sheikh Muhammed Salih Al-Munajjid5 Importance of This Research7 Synopsis7 1. Astronomy and Astrology8 History8 In the Light of Quran and Hadith9 2. Modern Types of Astrology10 Palmistry10 Horoscopes10 Gemstones11 Love Meters and Death Predictions11 Meteorite11 Conclusion13 PREFACE Foreword Astronomy is the study of the movement of celestial bodies like sun, moon, stars in order to understand the pattern of day and night, years months etc. while, the Astrology is the study of unseen, means it helps in prediction of the future with the help of the positions of stars.
Though before 18th century both of the disciplines were studied under the astrology, namely Ilm Al-Nujoom, but later on researches separated both of the studies. In Islam the study of Astronomy is permitted, while the knowledge of astrology is Haram, and one who follow or believe on astrology involves in shirk unintentionally. Al-Bukhaari said in his Saheeh: Qutaadah said: “Allaah created these stars for three purposes: to adorn the heavens, to stone the devils and as signs by which to navigate.
Whoever seeks anything else in them is mistaken and does not benefit from them, and he is wasting his time and effort in seeking something of which he has no knowledge. ” (Saheeh al-Bukhaari, Baab fi’l-Nujoom, 2/240) ‘The Salaah (daily prayer) of whoever approaches a fortuneteller and asks him about anything will not be accepted for forty days and nights. ’ [Saheeh Muslim vol. 4,p. 1211, no 5440] Literature Review Following persons has worked earlier on the topic of Astronomy and Astrology in Islam: Moulana Shihabuddin Nadvi
Moulana Shihabuddin Nadvi has described in detail the topic of astrology and astronomy within the topic “Sighting of Moon : Reliability of Astronomical Calculations in the Light of Holy Qur’an and Hadith- I”. In which, he has differentiated the Astronomy and Astronomy with a clear cut definitions; but, in the past both terms were used under a single study of Astrology known as Ilm Al-Nujoom (science of stars), though some scholars of that same time differentiated between Astronomy and Astrology by dividing Ilm Al-Nujoom in Sinaat Al-Nujoom and Ahkam An-Nujoom.
He declared the Astrology as Haram in his article, while Farz Al-Kifayah (An obligation on a large part of Muslim community, if small number of Muslims out of large performs that then no one would be blameworthy. If no one performs it then a collective punishment would be given. ). He proved his point of view with the following verses of Quran Karim: He makes the night for rest and tranquillity, And the sun and moon for the reckoning (of time). Such is the judgment and ordering of (Him), the Exalted in Power, the Omniscient. (Qur’an, 6:96) The Sun and the Moon follow courses (exactly) computed. Qur’an, 55:5) “And the Moon. We have measured for her mansions (to traverse) till she returns like the old (and withered) lower part of a date-stalk”. (Qur’an, 36:39) “It is He who made the sun to be a shining glory and the moon to be a light (of beauty), and measured out stages for her; that ye might know the number of years and the count (of time). No wise did God create this but in truth and righteousness. (Thus) doth He explain His Signs in detail, for those who understand. ” (Qur’an, 10:5) “They ask thee concerning the New Moons.
Say: They are but signs to mark fixed periods of time in (the affairs of) men and for Pilgrimage. “(Qur’an, 2:189) Astrology vs. Astronomy by Sheikh Muhammed Salih Al-Munajjid Shaikh Muhammed Salih Al-Munajib divided the study of stars into two: Astronomy and Astrology. He divided Astrology further into three parts as follows: * One who have strong belief on the stars or in Astrology, that these influence in the lives of humans, then they are involving in a “Major Shirk”, because they believe someone else powerful alongside Allah Almighty.
And that person would be included in Mushrik. * If someone claim to know the unseen things, for example: if one says that the persons born under such stars would be miserable and vice versa would also moved out of the boundaries of Islam, because Allah says: “Say: None in the heavens and the earth knows the Ghayb (Unseen) except Allaah”[al-Naml 29:65] * If one believes that celestial bodies or stars are the source of something good or bad, then he is involving in “Minor Shirk”. For example: Rain fall is due to the stars.
He supported his argument through this Hadith: Hadeeth narrated by al-Bukhaari (801) and Muslim (104) from Zayd ibn Khaalid al-Juhani who said: “The Messenger of Allaah SAWs (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) led us in praying Fajr at al-Hudaybiyah, following rainfall during the night. When he had finished praying, he turned to the people and said, ‘Do you know what your Lord has said? ’ They said, ‘Allaah and His Messenger know best. ’ He said, ‘This morning one of My slaves became a believer in Me and one became a disbeliever.
As for the one who said, “We have been given rain by virtue of Allaah and His mercy,” he is a believer in Me and a disbeliever in the stars. But as for the one who said, “We have been given rain by such and such a star,” he is a disbeliever in Me and a believer in the stars. ’” So the one who attributes rain to the stars is saying that the stars caused the rain. He also divided Astronomy into two categories: * Knowing the directions and poles through stars is permissible as Allah says: “And landmarks (signposts, during the day) and by the stars (during the night), they (mankind) guide themselves” [al-Nahl 16:16] Knowing the seasons through the phases of moons is permissible according to the writer because it doesn’t involve any type of shirk, while some of the salaf claim it as Makrooh. Importance of This Research Ilm-ul-Nujum was the discovery of Arabs, which was mostly includes the trait of Astrology; therefore still most of the people get confused in between the concepts of Astronomy and Astrology, and become the part of Shirk unintentionally. So this report is would show the light to those Muslims.
Secondly, Muslims of Pakistan has lived a long time in Indian Sub-continent, where the majority was of non-Muslims specially Hindus, which are the strong believer of Astrology. So report would be great help of Pakistanis, who are still clouded with the concepts of Hindus as can be prevented from involving in the Shirk. In short it is for all those Muslims who remain confuse in between these both terms. Synopsis * This reports includes full definitions of Astronomy and Astrology and their major differences. History of these studies, that how they came into being, and how it influenced Muslims. * Modern types of Astrology like Palmistry, Horoscopes, Love Meters (shows love between couples after marriage), Death Clocks, concept of Meteorite, belief in Gemstones and different types of myths transferred through Hindus’ culture, which again leads to Shirk. * Though target population for this report is all of the Muslims, but specifically the Pakistan’s population is more specific. 1. Astronomy and Astrology
Astronomy is the study of celestial object afar from the boundaries of earth, like sun stars, planets to understand the concepts of weather, seasons, years, months, days determining the direction of prayer etc. While, Astrology helps in predicting the future events, personality, human affairs by studying the positions of celestial objects, and who do such things is known as Astrologer. History The concept of Astrology is almost as old as the world, but firstly it was organized in second millennium B. C, namely “Babylonian Astrology”, in which some planets were stereotyped as gods.
After that Astrology’s many traditions, types and categories were created. In which the “Electional Astrology” was also one of them, that was created by the ancient muslims. This Astrology was applicable on the whole day of a person like: when and how the journey should be started, when and how to start the business etc. and all was predicted through the movements of celestial bodies. Later on the concept of Ilm-ul-Nujum was introduced, which was the mixture of both Astronomy and Astrology, though major percentage consisted of Astrology.
Astronomy originated through a problem in 18th century, ancient people needed to fix proper timings for planting and harvesting crops and for religious festivals. So they took out the solution from their curiosity of conversion of the light of the day into the darkness of night and the movement of sun, moon and stars led finally to the observation that the heavenly bodies seems to move in an definite pattern. Which was proved to be helpful in understanding the location, time, and instructions on Earth. This definite pattern helped them to keep record of the time and solved there problem, followed by the discovery of Astronomy.
So Ilm-ul-Nujum was divided into two studies Sinaat Al-Nujoom (Astronomy) and Ahkam An-Nujoom (Astrology). In the Light of Quran and Hadith Quran Karim and Hadith interpret Astrology as unlawful or Haraam and Astronomy as permissible by the following verses: * “Say (O Muhammad sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam): ‘ I possess no power over benefit or hurt to myself except as Allaah wills. If I had the knowledge of the ghayb (unseen), I should have secured for myself an abundance of wealth, and no evil should have touch me.
I am but a warner, and a bringer of glad tidings unto people who believe. ” [7:188] * “Verily, with God alone rests the knowledge of when the Last Hour will come: and He [it is who] sends down rain; and He [alone] knows what is in the wombs: whereas no one knows what he will reap tomorrow, and no one knows in what land he will die, Verily. God [alone] is all-knowing, all-aware. ” [31:34] * “Say: None in the heavens and the earth knows the ghaby (unseen) except Allaah, nor can they perceive when they shall be resurrected. ” [27:65] * Astrology can also be a sort of magic.
The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) stated: “Whoever acquires a branch of knowledge of astrology has certainly acquired a branch of sorcery, increasing in it as he continues with it. ” (Abu Dawood) * Hadeeth narrated by al-Bukhaari (801) and Muslim (104) from Zayd ibn Khaalid al-Juhani who said: “The Messenger of Allaah SAWs (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) led us in praying Fajr at al-Hudaybiyah, following rainfall during the night. When he had finished praying, he turned to the people and said, ‘Do you know what your Lord has said? ’ They said, ‘Allaah and His Messenger know best. He said, ‘This morning one of My slaves became a believer in Me and one became a disbeliever. As for the one who said, “We have been given rain by virtue of Allaah and His mercy,” he is a believer in Me and a disbeliever in the stars. But as for the one who said, “We have been given rain by such and such a star,” he is a disbeliever in Me and a believer in the stars. ’” So the one who attributes rain to the stars is saying that the stars caused the rain. 2. Modern Types of Astrology Astrology, which is strongly forbidden in the Islam, stills rule in our society in one form or other, and most of the people remain unaware of it.
Some of the modern types of Astrology are: Palmistry Palmistry is one of the modern ways of Astrology, and has same type of consequences as of astrology. But, still it is very common in Pakistan due to effects of Indian Sub-Continent and increasing trend of today’s Indian Media. According to the survey, conducted by Gilani Foundation and Gallup Pakistan, 57% of Pakistanis declared that they believe in Palmistry in some way and majority found in the survey was of urbanites and youngsters; while 81% said yes when they were asked that whether they ever had their hand read by someone.
Horoscopes Horoscope is also the part of Astronomy and includes the same punishment as of Astrology. But in Pakistan the last page of most of the weekly newspapers is utilized in printing the Horoscope section. It is printed almost in all the newspaper, either national or regional like: Dawn in English, Jang in Urdu, Kaawish in Sindhi and in a lot of daily magazines for youngsters, followed dozens of online websites of Horoscopes, which is motivating the Pakistani Muslims towards the Shirk without even knowing anything. Gemstones
It’s one of the oldest forms of Astrology, but still poses a lot of followers all over the world including the Muslims (especially Pakistanis). According to “BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine” survey in 2009 62% of the sample size in Pakistan agreed with the superstitious beliefs of Gemstones, and again this action is also transmitted from the Hindu/Indian culture. Expecting any supernatural or unseen power other than Almighty Allah is again comes into the category of Shirk, which is again has the same kind of penalty. Love Meters and Death Predictions
Today’s new trend, which seems increasing day by day is the usage of love meters; which indicates the love between the couple in future. This trend is spreading really fast in our country through the social sites like Facebook, Twitter etc. This is also seems a type of Astrology, therefore the punishment would also be the same as of the Astrology. Here is one of the sites of Love Meter in the Footnote. Death Clocks are also the increasing trend of today, which shows the time left in the death or the date of death of that specific person, who is checking his/her own date.
This fun activity has created a lot of believers around the world, who are being involved again to the activity of Shirk. Meteorite Meteorite is a scientific term, in which a part(s) of star is breaks and falls on earth, also known as Shooting Star. It is also known as the holder of some supernatural powers like Gemstones; therefore a tradition of acquiring a wish is set after the flash of Meteorite in the sky with a belief that it would come true at any cost. This concept has diffused a lot in Indian culture and Indian Muslims too perhaps, and main reason of its diffusion is the Bollywood industry.
According to my personal observation it is spreading in the culture of Pakistan as well along with a belief on its supernatural power of completing a wish. That is a Shirk again followed by the same punishment. The above mentioned types of modern Astrology are not only one, instead these are just few to clear the concept of Astrology and to aware the misguided, Muslims of the world, because the other existing form of Astrology would like wise be the same. Conclusion
Astronomy and Astrology are quite confusing, though both of the terms are used for the study of Stars; but Astrology is prohibited while the Astronomy is permissible. Astrology is prohibited because it predicts the future of the humans and his/her life, and believing other than Almighty Allah in this field (though in all fields) is forbidden in many verses of Quran Karim and Hadith Mubarak. And, the one who believes on any type of such stuff would be involving in the Shirk followed by the punishment of being evicted from the Islam.
Unfortunately, the modern types of Astrology like Palmistry, Horoscope, Gemstones, Death Clocks, Love Meters, Meteorite etc has captured the attraction of Muslims towards them; and such Muslims are becoming the part of Allah’s hatred unintentionally. The Muslims of Pakistan seems much more involved in all these activities, which has been proved from various surveys conducted in the country. Pakistan seems to affected by its neighbors country’s culture and effects of sub-continent. But, still it’s not too late, things can still improve. ——————————————– 1 ]. http://www. islamicvoice. com/april. 99/features. htm [ 2 ]. http://www. eemaan24by7. com/index. php? option=com_content&view=article&id=60&Itemid=29 [ 3 ]. http://islamqa. info/en/ref/22445 [ 4 ]. http://www. enotes. com/topic/Babylonian_astrology [ 5 ]. http://www. gallup. com. pk/Polls/2-03-10. pdf http://palmistry. wordpress. com/2010/04/08/palm-reading-in-asia-palmistry-is-extremely-popular-in-pakistan/ [ 6 ]. http://www. biomedcentral. com/1472-6882/9/32/ [ 7 ]. http://pakistanbridal. com/2011/04/love-meter-check-how-much-someone-loves-you/