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Impermissibility of Tatbir

Impermissibility of Tatbir
Ayatullah Khamenei, in his position as the Hakim Al-Shari’i has given a Hukm forbidding blood flagellation. A hukm is binding on all Muslims, unlike a fatwa.

Question 1450:
Is hitting oneself with swords halal if it is done in secret? Or is your fatwa in this regard universal?
Answer:
In addition to the fact that it is not held in the common view as manifestations of mourning and grief and it has no precedent at the lifetime of the Imams (a.s.) and even after that and we have not received any tradition quoted from the Infallibles (a.s.) about any support for this act, be it privately or publicly, this practice would, at the present time, give others a bad image of our school of thought. Therefore, there is no way that it can be considered permissible.

Question 1449:
In commemorating the martyrdom of Imam Husayn (a.s.) on the tenth of Muharram, some people hit themselves with a machete, or walk bare-footed on fire. Such actions defame Shi‘ism and put it in a bad light, if not undermine it. They cause bodily and spiritual harms on these doing it as well. What is your opinion in this matter?
Answer:
Any practice that causes bodily harm, or leads to defaming the faith, is haram. Accordingly, the believers have to steer clear of it. There is no doubt that many of these practices besmirch the image of Ahlul Bayt’s (a.s.) School of Thought which is the worst damage and loss.

Question 1451:
What is the shar‘i criterion in determining physical or psychological damage?
Answer:
The criterion is noticeable and considerable harm judged by common sense.
Practical Laws of Islam.
“Blood matam is a part of the culture that was made up. It is an issue that has no relation to religion and, without doubt, Allah is not happy with it.”
“It is an incorrect action which some people perform – taking a blade in one’s hand and hitting themselves on the head with it spilling their blood. What do they do this for? How is this action considered mourning? Of course, hitting one’s head with their hands is a form of mourning. You have seen over and over again, a person who has had something bad happen to them, hit themselves on their head and chest. This is a normal sign of mourning. But, have you ever seen a person who has had something bad happen to their most loved (ones) hit themselves on the head with a sword until blood flows down? How is this action considered mourning?”
A speech given to scholars of Kahgiluyeh and Bavir Ahmad, Muharram, 1372


FOR MORE INFORMATION ON THE IMPERMISSIBILITY OF TATBIR VISIT:

www.tatbir.org