Facing Opposition from Family and Friends on Beard

By Mufti Taqi Usmani
Posted: 27 Zul-Qa'dah 1422, 10 February 2002

Q.) I am a born Muslim living in London and I have just recently stared to practice Islam through my five daily prayers and I have grown a beard, which is still short and I am hoping to do Umrah.

My family does not like the fact that I am growing a beard and they tell me to shave it off and they say that it does not look nice. This makes me very weak but I would like to carry this sunnah of the Prophet Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam.

My friends also say that it does not look nice and this also makes me very weak at times.

Can you please advise me on how I may overcome this problem and how I may make my self stronger in Iman. [Zhahid Mahmood]

A.) I am sorry for the inordinate delay in answering your email message but it was due to the heap of messages that I have to answer. I congratulate you that you have started to practice Islam in your daily life and have started to perform daily Salat. Your growing of beard is not only the Sunnah of the Holy Prophet Sall-Allahu alayhi wa sallam but it is verbally emphasized by him so that the Muslims can be distinguished from the non-muslims even in their appearance.

The objection, that it does not look nice, is not tenable because the nice look is a relative term and no body can give a universal definition of it. There was a time when the beard used to be treated as a sign of masculine beauty and it is only during the last century that the practice of shaving beard became rampant. A person should decide on his own about what is the correct attitude and once this decision is taken the objections of the people should not be an impediment in his way because one cannot eliminate such objections any way.