Participating in pagan rituals a sin.

Mu' meneen Brothers and Sisters,

As Salaam Aleikum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh. (May Allah's Peace, Mercy and Blessings be upon all of you)


One of our brothers/sisters has asked this question:

Mr. Burhan,

I would like to ask u a question regarding the Dawoodi Bohra practices. I have read a lot of the questions posed by Bohras and your answers to most of them condemn our practices. I agree with a lot of them like kissing the hand of the 'bhaisaheb' is not allowed, and putting coconuts in the thaal for pehli raat is a pagan ritual. However, I would like to know how it would be possible for me to avoid or condemn all of these rituals which are accepted by the Bohra community as the norm. I am a part of the community, and I don't see how i can escape all of this. Would it be a sin in the eyes of Allah to be a part of these rituals, even if I am not actively participating?


(There may be some grammatical and spelling errors in the above statement. The forum does not change anything from questions, comments and statements received from our readers for circulation in confidentiality.)




Participating in pagan rituals a sin

In the name of Allah, We praise Him, seek His help and ask for His forgiveness. Whoever Allah guides none can misguide, and whoever He allows to fall astray, none can guide them aright. We bear witness that there is none worthy of worship but Allah Alone, and we bear witness that Muhammad (saws) is His slave-servant and the seal of His Messengers.


Allah Says in the Holy Quran Chapter 4 Surah Nisaa verse 135:

135    O ye who believe!  Stand out firmly for justice (and Truth) as witnesses to Allah even as against yourselves or your parents or your kin and whether it be (against) rich or poor: for Allah can best protect both.  Follow not the lusts (of your hearts) lest ye swerve and if ye distort (justice and truth) or decline to do justice; verily Allah is well-acquainted with all that ye do.


Allah Says in the Holy Quran Chatper 5 Surah Maidah verse 8:

8        O ye who believe!  Stand out firmly for Allah as witnesses to fair dealing and let not the hatred of others to you make you swerve to wrong and depart from justice.  Be just: that is next to Piety: and fear Allah for Allah is well-acquainted with all that ye do.


Respected sister in Islam, being a witness or (Allah forbid) participating in pagan rituals is one thing….but when some of those pagan rituals take on the nature or manifestation of ‘shirk’ (doing sajdah to the ‘holy men’, or invoking the dead, or visiting the shrines and tombs and invoking the deceased, etc.) then without an iota of a doubt, such participation would ignite the Wrath and the Anger and the Punishments of the Lord Most Majestic, Most Supreme!!!


Respected sister, the question which you need to answer and the decision which you need to make yourself is why would one wish or want or insist to be part of a ‘pagan’ community when Allah Subhanah has blessed them with His Mercy and opened their hearts to the Truth of Al-Islam, The Glorious Quran, and the Sunnah of the Messenger of Allah (saws)???


Allah Says in the Holy Quran Chapter 9 Surah Taubah verses 23-24:

23      O ye who believe! Take not for protectors your fathers and your brothers if they love ‘kufr’ (disbelief) above ‘emaan’ (faith): if any of you do so they do wrong.

24      Say: ‘If it be that your fathers, your sons, your brothers, your mates, or your kindred; the wealth that ye have gained; the commerce in which ye fear a decline; or the dwellings in which ye delight are dearer to you than Allah or His Messenger or the striving in His Cause; then wait until Allah brings about His Decision: and Allah guides not the rebellious!


Respected sister in Islam, if Allah Subhanah has truly opened your heart to the Truth, then the only way to permanently avoid the witnessing and/or participating in pagan rituals and/or practices of shirk is to leave the pagan or disbelieving community and join the community of brethren who invoke and worship none save Allah Subhanah Alone, the Lord, Creator, and Sustainer of the Worlds.


Allah Says in the Holy Quran Chapter 4 Surah Nisaa verses 97-100:

97      When Angels take the souls of those who die in sin against their souls (kufr, shirk, hypocrisy, etc.) they say: "In what (plight) were ye?"  They reply: "Weak and oppressed were we in the earth."  They (the Angels) ask: "Was not the earth of Allah spacious enough for you to move yourselves away (from evil)?"  Such people will find their abode in Hell; what an evil refuge!

98      Except those who are (really) weak and oppressed men, women, and children who have no means in their power nor (a guide-post) to direct their way.

99      For these there is hope that Allah will forgive: for Allah doth blot out (sins) and forgive again and again.

100    He who forsakes his home in the Cause of Allah, finds in the earth many a refuge wide and spacious: should he die as a refugee from home for Allah and his Messenger, his reward becomes due and sure with Allah: and Allah is Oft-Forgiving Most Merciful.


If one trusts, obeys, and follows the guidance and commands of Allah and His Messenger (saws),   one can be assured of never ever being misled;   but if one believes, obeys and follows any other guidance, other than that of Allah and His Messenger (saws), one can be assured of being led astray.  


Whatever written of Truth and benefit is only due to Allah’s Assistance and Guidance, and whatever of error is of me alone.  Allah Alone Knows Best and He is the Only Source of Strength.


Your brother and well wisher in Islam,





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