Misconception 4 – Refraining from demolishing the Sphinx of Giza and the pyramids

Misconception 3 – ‘Amr ibn al ‘As burnt the library of Alexandria
January 26, 2022
January 26, 2022

BACK Return to Table of contents


Misconception 4 – Refraining from demolishing the Sphinx of Giza[1] and the pyramids[2]


This misconception is based on the allegation that ‘Amr ibn al ‘As radiya Llahu ‘anhu desisted from demolishing the Sphinx of Giza and the Pyramids at the conquest of Egypt. This proves that there is no obligation to demolish statues that are not worshipped.[3]



This misconception can be answered in eight ways:


1. Lack of Evidence.

One needs to present evidence to conclude the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum saw it and left it as is. There is no evidence that supports this conclusion.


2. When there are two opposing probabilities

Did ‘Amr ibn al ‘As or any other sahabi see them?  Both possibilities are equally likely; however, one is unable to confidently determine which is more likely. The principle in matters such as these is:

When there is a likelihood of two possibilities, the one with a greater likelihood is taken and when both are equally likely then both possibilities are discarded. In this case one ought to look for external evidence in making a determination.


Looking at external evidences, the possibility of them not seeing these monuments seems more likely due to the following factors:

1. None of the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum or Tabi’in spoke of them. If it was something that had been noticed, questions would have been asked and the answers would have filtered down to us.

2. In the book, Athar Misr al Qadimah[4] there is mention that the first to record the pyramids was Ibn al Faqih who visited Egypt during the 3rd century A.H./ 9th century A.D. As for the Sphinx, the first to record it was al Maqdisi al Bashari who visited Egypt during the 4th century A.H./10th century A.D. Writing of Giza he states, “There is an idol there whom they think to be the devil. He entered it and damaged it until he broke its nose and lips.”[5] However, this doesn’t explicitly state it to be the Sphinx.

Ibn Jubayr, who visited Egypt during the 18th century A.D. has explicitly mentioned it in his book al Rihlah.

‘Abdul Latif al Baghdadi, who visited Egypt during the 7th century A.H./ 13th century A.D., records in his book al Ifadah which fits the description of the head and neck of the Sphinx. He writes, “They say its body is buried underground. Basing the size of its body on its head, it would be 70 arm spans.”[6]

Thus, it seems quite possible that during the 1st century Hijri, when the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum entered Egypt, it was yet buried under the sand.


3. Consider Other Similar Situations

When making a determination, it is prudent to consider other similar situations. This will aid one in reaching a correct and true conclusion.

The stance of Islam regarding statues is well known.[7] Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam broke the idols when he entered Makkah at the conquest and instructed the depictions be effaced. These were depictions of Ibrahim, Ismail, and Maryam ‘alayhim al Salam as recorded by al Bukhari.[8] The claim that he excluded the depictions ‘Isa ibn Maryam and his mother is inauthentic.[9]

In any case, he instructed them effaced even though there is no record of these depictions being subjects of worship. He also sent the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum to destroy idols. He sent Sa’d ibn Zaid al Ashhali radiya Llahu ‘anhu to destroy Manat, ‘Amr ibn al ‘As radiya Llahu ‘anhu to destroy Suwa’, and Khalid ibn al Walid radiya Llahu ‘anhu to destroy ‘Uzza.[10] Thus, destroying idols and effacing them had become an innate characteristic of the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum, whether they were subjects of worship or not.

Take Amir al Mu’minin ‘Ali ibn Abi Talib radiya Llahu ‘anhu impressing the same upon those who did not attain the companionship of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. Abu al Hayaj al Asadi says, “‘Ali ibn Abi Talib said to me:


ألا أبعثك على ما بعثني عليه رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم أن لا تدع تمثالا إلا طمسته ولا قبرا مشرفا إلا سويته

I am sending you on the same mission as Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam sent me. Do not leave an image without effacing it or a high grave without levelling it.[11]


We find in this hadith the word timthal and qabr are in an indefinite (Nakirah) form after a prohibition (Nafi). This sentence structure gives the meaning of generality (Umum). As such we have been instructed to efface every image and level every high grave. As for those who strike a difference between depictions of worship and those that are not subjects of worship make a claim without any evidence. Rather the evidences are stacked against them as we will further elucidate.


4. The Instruction is General for Depictions of Worship or Otherwise

Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam prohibited depictions of animate objects and instructed their effacement, be it a subject of worship or not. The following narrations elucidate this:

Aisha radiya Llahu ‘anha reports:


دخل علي النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم وفي البيت قرام فيه صور فتلون وجهه ثم تناول الستر فهتكه وقالت قال النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم إن من أشد الناس عذابا يوم القيامة الذين يصورون هذه الصور

The Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam entered the house while there was a curtain with animate pictures in the house. His face turned red in anger, and he got hold of the curtain and tore it down. The Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said, “Such people who paint these pictures will receive the severest punishment on the Day of Resurrection.”[12]


Abu Zur’ah reports:


دخلت انا و أبو هريرة دارا تبني بالمدينة لسعيد او لمروان فرأىمصورا يصور في الدارفقال قال رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم قال الله عز وجل ومن أظلم ممن ذهب يخلق خلقا كخلقي فليخلقوا ذرة أو ليخلقوا حبة

I, in the company of Abu Hurairah visited a house in Madinah that was being built for Marwan or Sa’id and he found pictures there whereupon he said, “I heard Allah’s Messenger salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam as saying: Allah, the Glorious and Exalted, said, ‘Who is a greater oppressor than one who tries to create creation like my creation. Let him create an atom or a grain of wheat.’”[13]


Abu Hurairah radiya Llahu ‘anhu reports from Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam who said:


تخرج عنق من النار يوم القيامة لها عينان تبصران وأذنان تسمعان ولسان ينطق يقول: إني وكلت بثلاثة بكل جبار عنيد وبكل من دعا مع الله إلها آخر وبالمصورين

A neck will rise from the fire on the Day of Judgment. It will have two eyes that will see, two ears that will hear, and a tongue that will speak. It will say, “I have been entrusted to deal with three types of people. Every obstinate oppressor, every person who called out to other Gods with Allah, and those who made pictures.”[14]


These proofs specify the impermissibility of all animate depictions.[15] No person with any amount of common sense will opine that the curtain torn down by Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam was placed as an object of worship. He became angry and tore it down with his own hands even though they were mere hand drawings that were attached to the curtain. This too was included in the prohibition and warning. Carving statues would no doubt, fall within the warning and prohibition with greater reason.

Further, it should not be said that this prohibition was due to the close proximity of the polytheistic era since the evidences of impermissibility are general and do not have any indication that may restrict its purport. Ibn Daqiq al ‘Id al Maliki al Shafi’i has penned the following in this regard in a most wonderful fashion:


وقد تظاهرت دلائل الشريعة على المنع من التصوير والصور ولقد أبعد غاية البعد من قال: إن ذلك محمول على الكراهة وإن هذا التشديد كان في ذلك الزمان لقرب عهد الناس بعبادة الأوثان وهذا الزمان حيث انتشر الإسلام وتمهدت قواعده لا يساويه في هذا المعنى فلا يساويه في هذا التشديد هذا أو معناه وهذا القول عندنا باطل قطعة لأنه قد ورد في الأحاديث الإخبار عن أمر الآخرة بعذاب المصورين وأنهم يقال لهم أحيوا ما خلقتم وهذه علة مخالفة لما قاله هذا القائل وقد صرح بذلك في قوله عليه السلام المشبهون بخلق الله وهذه علة عامة مستقلة مناسبة لا تخص زمانا دون زمان وليس لنا أن نتصرف في النصوص المتظاهرة المتضافرة بمعنی خیالي يمكن أن يكون هو المراد مع اقتضاء اللفظ التعليل بغيره وهو التشبه بخلق الله

The evidences of the shari’ah are replete with prohibition of pictures and picture making. Indeed the one that says, ‘This prohibition is understood as undesirability and that the severity of the prohibition was for that time due to the closeness of the era of the people to idol-worship and, since Islam has spread in this age and its principles have been laid out, the prohibition of picture-making is not equivalent to this in severity anymore’ is removed far beyond the truth… This statement according to us is absolutely false because it is narrated in the ahadith and reports in regards to the reality of the afterlife that picture-makers will be punished and it will be said to them, ‘Bring to life what you have created!’ This is a rationale contrary to what this speaker says. He clarified this in his salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam statement, ‘the imitators of Allah’s creation,’ and this rationale is general, independent and applicable for all times and is not qualified by one period and not another period. It is not appropriate for us to use our own discretion in the face of demonstrable concatenated evidences, using a fanciful interpretation taking other meanings when the rationale is imitating the creation of Allah.[16]


5. Pictures of Animate Objects Are Impermissible by Consensus

Ibn al ‘Arabi states:


حاصل ما في اتخاذ الصور أنها إن كانت ذات أجسام حرم بالإجماع

The sum-total of the discussion regarding pictures is that if it is of an animate object then it is impermissible by consensus.[17]


Al Nawawi states:

وأجمعوا على منع ما كان له ظل ووجوب تغييره

They have reached a consensus regarding the impermissibility of that which has a shadow. It becomes obligatory to change it.[18]


The scholars have not delved into the differences of it being a subject of worship, or if kept as a remembrance, or if one is in close proximity to a polytheistic age when declaring the consensus of impermissibility.


6. Certainty Is Not Dispelled by Doubt

Our shari’ah has an important maxim: Certainty is not dispelled by doubt. We know with certainty that the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum broke idols and statues during the era of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. As for what has been said regarding the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum not demolishing statues in the conquered lands, well they can be subject to various interpretations. Leaving them be could have been part of the treaties they had signed[19], or they could have at that time still been buried, or it may have been impossible to demolish them due to their colossal size. These are three possibilities, each one as likely as the next. Thus, what is known by way of certainty cannot be dispelled by a doubt.


8. Demolishing These Colossal Artifacts Was Not Possible

If we were to agree to their presence and the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum having left them be, it does not mean they agreed to leave them contentedly. Rather, they left them be being incapable of demolishing them. We have already described the colossal size and impregnable construction of the pyramids and the sphinx. Ibn Khaldun, under the chapter heading: The Greatest of Structures Are Not Built by One State on Its Own, writes:


ويشهد لذلك أيضا أنا نجد آثارة كثيرة من المباني العظيمة تعجز الأول عن هدمها وتخريبها مع أن الهدم أيسر من البناء بكثير لأن الهدم رجوع إلى الأصل الذي هو العدم والبناء على خلاف الأصل فإذا وجدنا بناء تضعف قوتنا البشرية عن هدمه مع سهولة الهدم علمنا أن القدرة التي أسسته مفرطة القوة وأنها ليست أثر دولة واحدة وهذا مثل ما وقع للعرب في إيوان كسرى لما شرع الرشيد في هدمه وجمع الأيدي عليه واتخذ له الفؤوس وحماه بالتار وصب عليه الخل حتى إذا أدركه العجز ثم أقصر عن هدمه وكذلك اتفق للمأمون في هدم الأهرام التي بمصر وجمع الفعلة لهدمها فلم يحل بطائل وشرعوا في نقبه فانتهوا إلى جو بین الحائط والظاهر وما بعده من الحيطان وهنالك كان منتهى هدمهم

What this attests to is that we find plenty traces of the ancient buildings which later nations cannot even destroy or demolish although demolition is much easier than construction, for demolition is a return to the origin which is nothingness while construction is different from the origin. If we see a building whose destruction is beyond our human abilities to destroy, then we know that those who constructed it had great abilities and that it is not the trace of one nation.

An example of this took place for the Arabs with the Arch of Ctesiphon when al Rashid was determined to demolish it, he began with this project and employed hands for it and used axes, heated it with fire, and poured vinegar on it, but once he realized his incapability, he abandoned the project. The same happened to al Ma’mun in the demolition of the pyramid of Egypt, for he gathered workmen and ended to a space between the apparent wall and the walls after it, and this is where their demolition ends.[20]


Dear reader, now that you have understood the colossal size of these artefacts and its impregnable structure, how could we have wanted the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum to have demolished it? Is it with their silver swords and early age weapons? Do we not know of them laying siege to their enemies for days on end unable to penetrate their walls? If we look to recent history and see what labours the Taliban went through in demolishing the Bamiyan Buddhas during our age of technology, what can be said of early age weaponry?


8. We Have Been Restricted by Ability

The personality that instructed us to demolish statues and idols is the very same who bound it to our abilities. Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said:


واذا أمرتكم بامر فأتوا منه ما استطعتم

When I instruct you, then carry out my instruction according to your ability.[21]


This is the magnanimity of our Islamic creed.

Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala says:


لَا يُكَلِّفُ اللّٰهُ نَفْسًا إِلَّا وُسْعَهَا

Allah does not charge a soul except [with that within] its capacity.[22]


وَمَا جَعَلَ عَلَيْكُمْ فِى الدِّيْنِ مِنْ حَرَجٍ

He has not placed upon you in the religion any difficulty.[23]


Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala has made standing an integral of salah without which salah is not valid, even if done by mistake. Yet, a person unable to stand is given the concession to sit. Similarly, an aged person unable to fast and a chronically ill person have been absolved from fasting. Hajj too has been restricted to one’s ability.

If Allah hasn’t charged a person above his ability in matters pertaining to the pillars of Islam, then what can be said regarding other subsidiary matters?

The discussions of this chapter leaves one without doubt of the weakness of the narrations that attempt to blemish the life and times of the eminent Sahabi, ‘Amr ibn al ‘As radiya Llahu ‘anhu. Any person with deep and true knowledge of the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum would be convinced of the baselessness of what has been attributed to him, even before studying its falsities.

The Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum are the most noble of humanity after the Prophets ‘alayhim al Salam. Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala selected them for the companionship of His Messenger salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. They were the most pious of the Ummah, the most knowledgeable, unperturbed by formalities, the most guided, and lived the most noble of lives. They are the leaders of every generation and the guiding stars in matters of faith, knowledge, wisdom, character, and in matters pertaining to this life and the next. How can it not be then that their teacher and guide was the best of all creation and the master of the Bani Adam, Muhammad salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. Sufficient is the proclamation of Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala to their purity and His promise for their abode in paradise.[24]

‘Amr radiya Llahu ‘anhu, a Sahabi, promised paradise by Allah. Anyone who has doubts or misconceptions regarding this eminent Sahabi should recall the statement of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam:


أسلم الناس وآمن عمرو بن العاص

The people submitted whilst ‘Amr ibn al ‘As believed.[25]


NEXT⇒ Epilogue

[1]  The Sphinx lays close to the Khafre Valley Temple in a depression in the eastern rim facing from west to east and appears to represent the pharaoh Khafre. Cut from the bedrock, it is a momentous piece of limestone which was used as a quarry for the construction of the Pyramids. The workers left it since thinking it to be unsuitable. However, the engineers of pharaoh Khafre thought of redefining its use and created a mythical creature with the head of a man, and the body of a lion the face of which represented Khafre. Atop its head sits a royal headpiece with a cobra on its forehead and a long beard to boot. The name Abu al Hawl perhaps dates back to the old Egyptian ‘bar hawl’ which means house of lion. Samir Adib: Tarikh wa Hadarah Misr, pg. 80. Its dimensions are as follows: 66 feet tall, 240 feet long, the ears are 4 feet, nose 5 feet mouth, 7 feet, and face 13 feet across. See, Dr. Salim Hassan: Abu al Hawl, pg. 86.

[2]  The largest pyramid which is also called the Great Pyramid was 146 meters high, now standing at 137 meters. It was 230 meters across and now 170 meters. See, Tarikh wa Hadarah Misr al Qadimah. pgs. 59-71.

[3]  Sulaiman ibn ‘Abdullah al Turki, Maqal fi Sahifah al Watn, number 179. Dated, 2/1/1422 A.H. as in the book Ma’abid al Kuffar by Ibrahim al Fahid, pg. 187.

[4]  Jaylan ‘Abbas: Athar Misr al Qadimah fi Kitabat al Rahhalah al ‘Arab wa al Ajanib, pg. 53.

[5]  Ibid., pg. 87.

[6]  Ibid., pgs. 87-88.

[7]  As for the bounty which Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala had granted Sulaiman ‘alayh al Salam as recorded in the Qur’an:

يَعْمَلُونَ لَهُ مَا يَشَآءُ مِن مَّحَـٰرِيبَ وَتَمَـٰثِيلَ

They made for him what he willed of elevated chambers, statues…

The scholars of tafsir write:

وقيل كانت من زجاج ونحاس ورخام تماثيل أشياء ليست بحيوان وذكر أنها صورة الأنبياء والعلماء وكانت تصور فى المساجد ليراها الناس . فيزدادوا عبادة واجتهادا قال صلى الله عليه وسلم أولئك إذا مات فيهم الرجل الصالح بنوا على قبره مسجدا وصوروا فيه تلك الصور أي ليتذكروا عبادتهم فيجتهدوا في العبادة وهذا يدل على أن التصوير كان مباحا فى ذالك الزمان ونسخ ذلك بشرع محمد صلى الله عليه وسلم وعن ابي العالية لم يكن اتخاذ التصاوير اذ ذاك محرماً

These were made from glass, copper, and marble. They were inanimate statues. Some have mentioned that they were depictions of the Prophets and scholars which were placed in the Masjids and would serve as reminders of their devotion in the hope that it might enable the people too to devote likewise. This shows that depictions were permissible in that shari’ah and had become abrogated in the shari’ah of Muhammad salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. Abu al ‘Aliyah says, “Making of pictures was not impermissible in that era.”

See, al Wahidi: al Tafsir al Wasit, vol. 3 pg. 489; Tafsir al Qurtubi, vol. 14 pg. 272; al Khatib al Shirbini: Al Siraj al Munir, vol. 3 pg. 286.

[8]Sahih al Bukhari, Hadith: 1524.

[9]  Those narrations that suggest Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam instructed the depictions of ‘Isa ibn Maryam and his mother be left are weak due to several reasons. Amongst them, weakness of chains of transmission and discrepancies of the content. Besides, it has been narrated from a number of Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum that Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam instructed every depiction, without exception, be effaced within the Ka’bah at the conquest of Makkah.

Ibn ‘Abbas radiya Llahu ‘anhuma narrates:

أن رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم لما قدم أبى أن يدخل البيت وفيه الآلهة فأمر بها فأخرجت فأخرخوا صورة إبراهيم وإسمعيل

When Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam came to Makkah, he refused to enter the Ka’bah with the idols in it. He ordered they be taken out and they were removed. The people also removed pictures of Ibrahim and Ismail. [Al Bukhari, vol. 4 pg. 156]

Jabir radiya Llahu ‘anhu narrates:

أن النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم أمر عمر بن الخطاب رضي الله عنه زمن الفتح وهو بالبطحاء أن يأتي الكعبة فيمحو كل صورة فيها ولم يدخل البيت حتى محيت كل صورة فيه

Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam instructed ‘Umar ibn al Khattab radiya Llahu ‘anhu during the Conquest of Makkah when they were at al Batha’ to go to the Ka’bah and remove all the depictions therein. He did not enter the Ka’bah until all the depictions were effaced. [Ahmed, Hadith: 15109. Shu’ayb al Arna’ut says, “Its chain of transmission is authentic according to the conditions of Muslim.”]

Usamah ibn Zaid radiya Llahu ‘anhuma narrates:

دخلت على رسول الله صل الله عليه وآله وسلم في الكعبة ورأى صورا قال: فدعا بدلو من ماء فأتيته به فجعل يمحوها ويقول قاتل الله قوما يصورون ما لا يخلقون

I came to Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam whilst he was in the Ka’bah wherein he saw some pictures. He called for a bucket of water which I brought. He then began effacing them whilst saying, “May Allah curse such people who make pictures of things they cannot create.” [Al Tayalisi, Hadith: 623. Al Albani has deemed it authentic in Sahih al Jami’, Hadith: 7741]

In number four we will further delve into the severe prophetic warnings for pictures and his anger when he saw pictures in his house. He informed us that angels do not enter homes wherein there are pictures. How could he then condone pictures remaining in the House of Allah! A number of explanations can be given for the traditions that suggest some Tabi’in having seen them. Hereunder are some:

It is possible that the depictions of Maryam and ‘Isa were buried within the substructure of the Ka’bah due to which they were not washed away. It, thus, remained unearthed until the Ka’bah caught fire during the era of Ibn al Zubair.

It is possible that they were dyed with a permanent dye such that water did not efface it or some of it was washed away when water was poured over during the era of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam whilst some traces remained.

It is possible that some Christians placed it in the Ka’bah after the time of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam and the Khulafa’ Rashidin. This would be quite probable at the time of fitnah during the era of Yazid ibn Muawiyah when some Christians made a show of accepting Islam. It would not be farfetched for them to have planted depictions of Maryam and ‘Isa ‘alayh al Salam in the Ka’bah in order to beguile the Muslims into thinking that Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam had left it so. This could also have been done by Christians who had accepted Islam after the era of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam and the Khulafa Rashidin.

The existence of the depictions of Maryam and ‘Isa ‘alayh al Salam within the Ka’bah after the era of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam does not necessitate the approval of it by Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam would not approve of wrong nor would he be pleased with it. Allah subhanahu wa ta ‘ala says regarding him:

اَلَّذِيْنَ يَتَّبِعُوْنَ الرَّسُوْلَ النَّبِىَّ الْأُمِّىَّ الَّذِىْ يَجِدُوْنَهُ مَكْتُوْبًا عِنْدَهُمْ فِىْ التَّوْرٰىةِ وَالْإِنْجِيْلِ يَأْمُرُهُمْ بِالْمَعْرُوْفِ وَيَنْهَىٰهُمْ عَنِ الْمُنْكَرِ

Those who follow the Messenger, the unlettered prophet, whom they find written [i.e., described] in what they have of the Torah and the Gospel, who enjoins upon them what is right and prohibits them from what is wrong. [Surah al A’raf: 157]

The point being driven here is that it is not permissible for one to entertain thoughts of approval or instruction from Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam for the retention of the depictions. Anyone entertaining such thoughts has entertained unsuitable thoughts of Rasulullah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. For further reading, see what al Tawjiri has written in the Majallah of al Jami’ah al Islamiyyah at Madinah al Munawwarah. Number: 41 under the heading ‘A warning regarding baseless reports of Makkah’.

[10]Ibn Sa’d: Al Tabaqat al Kubra, vol. 2 pgs. 146-147.

[11]Sahih Muslim, Hadith: 969.

[12]Sahih al Bukhari, book on etiquettes, Hadith: 5758; Sahih Muslim, book on clothing and beauty, Hadith: 2107.

[13]Sahih al Bukhari, book on monotheism, Hadith: 5609; Sahih Muslim, book on clothing and beauty, Hadith: 2111. The wording is of Muslim.

[14]Ahmed, Hadith: 8430; Al Tirmidhi: Al Sunan, vol. 4 pg. 282. The wording is of al Tirmidhi. Al Albani has deemed it authentic in al Sahihah: 512.

[15]  Exclusions will be made of pictures taken for necessity such as for identity documents, visas, and wanted posters. These exclusions are discussed at length in the books of fiqh.

[16]Ihkam al Ahkam Sharh ‘Umdah al Ahkam, vol. 1 pgs. 371-372.

[17]  Ibn Hajar: Fath al Bari, vol. 10 pg. 391.

[18]Sharh al Nawawi al Sahih Muslim, vol. 14 pg. 82.

[19]  They would then have been left as long as they were not taken out and displayed beyond the churches. See, Ibrahim al Fahid: Ma’abid al Kuffar wa Ahkamiha, pg. 192.

[20]Tarikh ibn Khaldun, vol. 1 pg. 13.

[21]Sahih al Bukhari, book on holding firm to the Book and the Sunnah, Hadith: 6858; Sahih Muslim, book on virtues, Hadith: 1337.

[22]  Surah al Baqarah: 286.

[23]  Surah al Hajj: 78.

[24]  The status of the Sahabah radiya Llahu ‘anhum has been discussed at the beginning of the book.

[25]Musnad Ahmed, Hadith: 17413; Al Tirmidhi: Al Sunan, Hadith: 3844.