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Using Haram Car

bank-mellat-carQuestion: 11 years ago ,we bought a car with Haraam money – intentionally! We used the car, for work ,for shopping ,for the usual day-to-day living since then, My question is, Is my life Haraam, I mean, is the money I earn ,the food I consume, the efforts I make all for waste and Haraam at that? ,just becasue of us using this car ? I suspect most of the difficulty’s and major problems in my life is because of utilising Haraam wealth, How can be absolved of this? can I sell the car and donate the money? give it away rather? Am I being paranoid?


Answer:

In the name of Allāh, Most Gracious, Most Merciful
Assalāmu ῾alaykum wa Rahmatullāhi Wabarakātuh
The fact that you are worried about your past mistake is a good thing; it is not paranoia. And the fact that you are seeking to set things right and to free yourself of the burden of the sin is even more commendable. In regards to acquiring haraam wealth, there are stern warnings in the hadiths. Please consider the following hadiths:
Jaabir (Radiyallaahu Anhu) narrates that Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Alaihi Wa Sallam) said, “No meat (i.e. person) that was nourished with haraam will enter paradise. Every meat (i.e. person) that was nourished with haraam is more deserving of the Fire.” (Musnad Ahmad, Daarami, Baihaqi; Mishkaatul Masaabih pg. 242, Qadeemi)
Abu Hurairah (Radiyallaahu Anhu) narrates that Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Alaihi wa Sallam) said, “Verily, Allah is Pure and He only accepts pure, and indeed Allah commanded the Believers what He commanded the Messengers. He said: ‘O Messengers, eat of the pure things and perform righteous acts. Verily, I am Well-Aware of what you do.’ And He said ‘O you who believe! Eat of the good things that We have provided you with, and give thanks to Allah if Him it is that you serve.’ Then the narrator of the hadith says: Then he (i.e. the Prophet) made mention of a man who is constantly in journeys and has dishevelled hair and dusty appearance (due to constant journeys for performing acts of righteousness such as Hajj, Umra, seeking knowledge etc.) and he raises his hands towards the sky saying “O my Rabb. O my Rabb”. But his food is from haraam. His drink is from haraam. His clothes are from haraam. He is nourished from haraam. How can it (his prayer) be accepted?” (Muslim; Mishkaatul Masaabih pg. 241, Qadeemi)
Ibn Mas’ood (Radiyallaahu Anhu) narrates that Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Alaihi Wa Sallam) said, “A slave (of Allah) who acquires haraam wealth and gives charity from it, it is not accepted from him. If he spends from it, he does not have any blessing (barakah) in it. If he leaves it behind him (i.e. he dies) it will be a means of taking him to the fire (of Hell). Verily, Allah does not wipe out evil deed with evil deed; instead, He wipes out evil deed with good deed. Indeed, the repulsive does not wipe out the repulsive.” (Musnad Ahmad, Sharh As-sunnah; Mishkaatul Masaabih pg. 242, Qadeemi)
Mulla Ali Qaari (Rahimahullah) while explaining “Verily, Allah does not wipe out evil deed with evil deed …” writes, “It means that giving charity of the haraam wealth is evil and Allah does not wipe out evil deeds with evil deeds. In fact, some of our scholars have said that whoever gives charity of haraam wealth and thereby hopes to receive rewards, commits an act of kufr. And if the poor person (who received the haraam wealth) knows (that it is haraam wealth) and yet he makes dua for him, he (also) commits an act of kufr.” (Mirqaatul Mafaatih: 6/23, Maktaba Rasheediya)
From the abovementioned ahaadith, the seriousness of acquiring haraam wealth becomes clear. And from the passage cited above and the hadith before it, it becomes clear that by giving away the haraam wealth in charity, one is not absolved of the sin. Therefore, by you selling the car and donating or giving away the money, the problem will not be solved.
What must you do to rid yourself of the burden of the sin?
You must either return the money that you acquired unlawfully back to the rightful owners, or you must seek their pardon. If the original owners have died, then you must return the money to their heirs (or seek their pardon). If the haraam money was such that its owners are unknown (such as in the case of interest money or money attained through gambling), then you must give away the amount in charity without the intention of receiving rewards.
لأن المغصوب إن علمت أصحابه أو ورثتهم وجب رده عليهم وإلا وجب التصدق به ( رد المحتار: 3/260 ، دار المعرفة )
You must do the above immediately, as there is no guarantee of life. Along with that, you must also do sincere tauba (repentance). Your tauba will not be valid without giving the money back to the rightful owners or seeking their pardon if it is possible to do so. (See: Ar-Rasa’il Az-Zainiya pg. 372, Darus Salam)
Remember that the issue of unlawfully taking others rights is not a small issue that can be ignored; instead it is a grave issue. Consider the following hadith:
Abu Huraira (Radiyallaahu Anhu) narrates that Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Alaihi wa Sallam) has said, “Whoever has committed a wrong against his brother in regards to his honour or anything else, should get it settled today, before the time comes when there is no Dinar or Dirham (i.e. the Day of Judgment). If he has good deeds then it will be taken away from him according to the extent of wrong he committed (and given to the wronged). If he does not have any good deeds, then the bad deeds of the other person (i.e. the wronged) will be given to him to bear.” (Bukhari, hadith 2269)
Also, do not think that committing an act of injustice against a Non-Muslim is not a big deal. In fact, the Jurists have expressly stated that committing an act of injustice against a Non-Muslim is more severe than committing an act of injustice against a Muslim. That is because a Non-Muslim who was wronged, on the Day of Judgement, will not let go of his right and forgive the Muslim (as he cannot receive any rewards in lieu of it) and he will instead firmly demand his right so that the Muslim may be punished along with him. The Muslim who unlawfully took the wealth of the Non-Muslim cannot give him his good deeds to pay him back (as Non-Muslims cannot receive good deeds) and therefore the sins of the Non-Muslim (besides the sin of kufr) will be given to the Muslim and he will be punished for it. Hence, one should not think that taking the rights of a Non-Muslim is not a big deal.[i]
مسلم غصب من ذمي مالا أو سرق منه، فإنه يعاقب به يوم القيامة، لأنه مالا معصوما والذمي لا يرجى منه العفو ويرجى ذلك من المسلم، فكانت خصومة الذمي أشد، وعند الخصومة لا يعطى ثواب طاعة المسلم للكافر لأنه ليس من أهل الثواب، ولا وجه أن يوضع على المسلم وبال كفر الكافر، فيبقى في خصومته ، وعن هذا قالوا : إن خصومة الدابة تكون أشد من خصومة الآدمي على الآدمي ( فتاوى قاضيخان: 3/123، العلمية )
في الدر المختار: إذ ظلم الدابة أشد من الذمي وظلم الذمي أشد من المسلم ؛ وقال ابن عابدين: ( قوله أشد من المسلم ) لأنه يشدد الطلب على ظالمه ليكون معه في عذابه ، ولا مانع من طرح سيئات غير الكفر على ظالمه فيعذب بها بدله ذكره بعضهم ط ( رد المحتار: 9/663 ، دار المعرفة )
Note that it is not permissible for you to use the car and whatever else you purchased with the haraam money until you return the money to the rightful owners or you seek their pardon or (if the owners are unknown) you give the amount in charity.
(Imdaadul Fataawa: 3/471-472, Darul Ulum Karachi)
(Aap ke Masa’il: 6/204, Maktaba Ludhyanawi)
وفي الملتقى وشرحه : ولو اشترى بألف الغصب أو الوديعة جارية تعدل ألفين ، فوهبها أو طعاما فأكله ، أو تزوج بأحدهما امرأة أو سرية أو ثوبا حل الانتفاع ، ولا يتصدق بشيء اتفاقا ؛ لأن الحرمة عند اتحاد الجنس ا هـ ونحوه في القهستاني ، ونقل ط عن الحموي عن صدر الإسلام : أن الصحيح لا يحل له الأكل ولا الوطء ؛ لأن في السبب نوع خبث ا هـ فليتأمل ( رد المحتار: 9/319 ، دار المعرفة )
من غصب من آخر لحما فطبخه أو غصب حنطة وطحنها وصار الملك له ووجب عليه رد القيمة فأكله حلال في قول أبي حنيفة رحمه الله تعالى وفي قول أبي يوسف – رحمه الله تعالى – أكله حرام قبل أن يرضى صاحبه، وفي فتاوى أهل سمرقند من غصب من آخر طعاما فمضغه حتى صار بالمضغ مستهلكا فلما ابتلعه ابتلع حلالا في قول أبي حنيفة – رحمه الله تعالى خلافا لأبي يوسف ومحمد – رحمهما الله تعالى – بناء على أن شرط الطيب الملك بالبدل عند أبي حنيفة رحمه الله تعالى وعندهما أداء البدل كذا في المحيط، والفتوى على قولهما هكذا في الخلاصة ( الفتاوى الهندية: 5/174، العلمية )
Therefore, all these years, your using of the car was not permissible, and you must make tauba for this. However, that does not mean that the money that you earned by halaal means will also become haraam because you used the car for going to work. And nor does it mean that the food you bought with halaal money will also become haraam because you used the car to go shopping. Using the car in an impermissible way and earning money, doing shopping etc. are two different things.
You are right in saying that committing sins brings about problems and miseries to ones life. Therefore, to have a pleasant and happy life, you must do tauba of your past sins and make a firm determination to abstain from all haraam acts in the future and to follow the teachings of Islam in all the spheres of life.
Allah Ta’ala says:
“Whoever works righteousness, whether male or female, while he (or she) is a true believer, verily, to him We will give a good life, and We shall pay them certainly a reward in proportion to the best of what they used to do” (Quran 16:97)

And Allāh Ta῾āla Knows Best
Wassalāmu ῾alaykum

Ml. Faizal Riza
Correspondence Iftā Student, Australia

Checked and Approved by:
Mufti Ebrahim Desai
Dārul Iftā, Madrasah In῾āmiyyah