Terminology Of Halal and Haram

Terminology Of Halal and Haram

Here is a list of the terminology used by Islamic scholors in reference to Halal (permissible according to Islamic law) and Haram (what is forbidden) in Islam.

Halal/Mubah, permissible -That which Allah and the Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings be upon him, have allowed to be done in a lawful manner. If these acts are done there is a reward. But if they are not, then there is no sin.

Example: Eating meat such as chicken, walking, sleeping etc

Fard, Obligatory - That which is obligatory to act upon. If these acts are done, you will be rewarded for it. But If these acts are not done, this would lead to a sin, and there will be punishment. 

Example: Praying five times a day, fasting in the month of Ramadan, giving alms to the needy, eating Halal meat, etc.

Haram, impermissible - That which Allah and the Prophet have completely and specifically forbidden. Engaging in an act that is Haram (i.e. eating food like pork, drinking alcohol, having sex outside of marriage) would lead to punishment in the Next Life, and the consequences will have to be faced in this life. 

Example: Consuming pork, drinking alcohol, having sex outside of marriage, etc. 

Makrouh, disliked - Acts that are disliked by Allah. Also defined as offensive. If these acts are done, there is no sin, but it is disliked by Allah. But if these acts are not done, you will be rewarded. 

Example: Giving and taking from the left hand. 

Makrouh Tahrimi, very disliked -This is a category of Makrouh, and is defined as offensive in the extreme, and close to the Haram. 

Example: In a mosque, talking loudly, making speeches, quarreling, or talking about mundane matters, etc.

Makrouh Tanzihi, less disliked - Another category of Makruh. It is defined as less offensive, but still distasteful.

Mandoob, liked  - Acts that are liked by Allah and are permissible. If these acts are done you get reward, but no sin if you don't.

Example: Using the miswak stick (stem of a plant) to cleanse teeth, reading the extra morning and evening prayers, etc. 

Mashbooh/Mushtabahat, doubtful - Refers to those acts or materials that are questionable or doubtful. There are differences of opinion by Islamic scholars on whether these are Halal i.e. permissible or haram i.e. impermissible. Muslims are to avoid such acts and material.

This is described as the “grey area” that is found between Halal and Haram. It has also been defined as questionable.

It is based on the Hadith, paraphrased: What is Halal is clear and what is Haram is clear. Midway between them are things which people do not know whether they are Halal or Haram. He who keeps away from them will protect his religion and will be saved. He who approaches them is very near to Haram, like a shepherd wandering his flock near Hima (protected grazing land), who could soon enter the forbidden area, and Allah's protected area is what He has declared forbidden. 

(Bukhari and Muslim) 

Example: Yeast Extract from brewer's yeast, Cochineal/Carmine color, etc 

Dhabiha, slaughtering - An animal slaughtered (or the process of slaughtering) according to the Islamic method without which flesh of a Halal animal is not lawful for the food of a Muslim.





Halal/Mubah, permissible 

No sin or reward

No sin or reward

Fard, Obligatory



Haram, impermissible 


Reward, if you had the desire to do it, but resisted.

Makrouh, disliked 

No Sin or reward


Mandoob, liked 


No sin or reward

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