My answer to that question above is: No, it is not haram. To be quite frank, I couldn’t care less when (some) people tell me it is haram and that I should not do it. I can’t help but wonder, however, have those people done the reasoning, the searching, and the learning about the matter themselves, or do they just do what others have told them to do?
I know this is a sensitive subject to bring up especially there are so many narrow-minded-easily-provoked people wandering-about on this earth. But I am -as a good, faithful, devout Muslim- have the right to comment on this matter.
It is sad and hard enough for a good Muslim like me to have my religion ‘rebranded’ by those terrorists with their big guns and big bombs, I also have to deal with fellow-good-Muslims telling me not to do things for vague reasons.
My whole life, I have heard and known Muslims arguing and debating endlessly on the matter. Some say it is haram, but thank God, most say it is not.
I personally have met fellow Muslims from Indonesia, Malaysia, India, Pakistan, Azerbaijan, United Arab Emirates, Iran, Egypt, Belgium, UK, Norway, etc… And what I found interesting is, those who are most fanatic and most extreme about Islam are those who read less of the Qur’an (=the Islamic holy book), and listen more to what their imams (=religious leaders) have to say about this religion.
In the Islamic teaching, the whole book of Qur’an contains words that came straight from God himself through His prophet. Not a single word was added or reduced by any human, not even Muhammad the prophet himself. We as Muslim should live our lives in goodness following the teaching in this holy book. God, as mentioned in His Qur’an, has been quite clear about many many things, like what are considered haram, and what are not. When something is haram, God made it clear by saying it is haram, and no question about it. For example: Eating pork is haram. Killing is haram. Not fasting during Ramadhan is haram. Etc. If God had wanted something to be haram, it is easy for him to say something is haram. Period.
I, as a good well educated Muslim, have read the Qur’an from cover to cover many times. Several times in Arabic, several times in English, several times in Indonesian. I am no muslim scholar, but I can definitely say I know what it is all about. Islam is about believing in God, one God only. It is also about believing that Muhammad was his messenger, that he was a mere human who was chosen to spread the word, and that we must not worship Muhammad since he is not God. It is also about being grateful with your life. It is also importantly about living a good peaceful life with others in this world. It is also about –surprisingly– not damaging mother earth.
Some argue it is haram to say Merry Christmas because it is considered to be haram to give well wishes to Christian’s religious festival because they are kuffaar/kafir (=disbelievers/infidels/heathen), this consideration however, is by consensus. Human consensus.
I argue, this religion, Islam, my faith, is not about what human say it is, but what God say it is, and what I believe it is. Moreover, to quote from the Qur’an:
“The Muslim believers, the Jews, the Christians, and the monotheistic religious community –all those who believe in God and the Last Day and do good– will have their rewards with Lord. No fear for them, nor will they grieve.” [Al Qur’an. 2:62]
How much clearer can it be, that Christians are not kuffaar/kafir. And since wishing well is part of doing good, I jolly well say it is NOT haram.
Have a very happy Christmas everyone…! I am sorry I am a little bit late, but we have been busy baking, lunching, dining, drinking, and being merry. 🙂 🙂
Dian Retno Wulandari. A faithful at heart, an open minded soul.
PS: The definition of haram (in short) is: Something that one must NOT do, otherwise one will sin.
PPS: If any of my Muslim readers would like to argue, please quote something that God has said, not what other people have thought.
PPPS: I am currently living in a devout Christian society. Most of my closest friends are Buddhists, but some are Christians, some are atheists, and none is Muslim. Everything is doing great!