Can I author a book that depicts the Sahabah as superheroes?

Can I author a book that depicts the Sahabah as superheroes?

Question:

Assalamu Alaikom wa Raghmatullahi wa barakatu

I am a 30 year old female educator residing in Cape Town. I would like to ask if it is islamically allowed for me to write a childrens book on our sahabas and prophets but depicting them as the real super heroes. 

This book will be maily for kids and to open their eyes and show them a way that they can learn to love our deen and our sunnah. As kids love super heroes and hopefully books I feel that with الله’s guidance ameen it will be able to sell and ameen maybe even be used at madressas

I would like to ask if this is possible in Islam and If I am allowed to have pictures in the book as different ulemas have different opinions. 

Jazakallah so much for your time and as soon as I get a reply ameen I would like to start. 

Jazakallah 

Answer:

In the name of Allah, Most Compassionate, Most Merciful,

As-salāmu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullāhi wa-barakātuh.

Sister in Islam,

It is pleasing to note your concern of instilling the love of the Sahabah and Deen in the hearts of children.

In principle, the writing of novels and books is permissible if the contents are not impermissible. For example, falsely portraying truths, indecent and lude depictions, pictures of animate beings, love stories, and stories that serve no benefit other than entertainment.

Authoring books will be permissible if they serve educational benefits, such as improving one’s literacy skills or is a means of deriving moral lessons. Furthermore, one may write a fictional novel as long as they do not portray true events or real persons in a fictional light, as that would constitute a lie.[i]

You have enquired if it is permissible to author a children’s book that depicts the Sahabah radhiyallu anhum as superheroes. Let us first consider the definition of a superhero.

Superheroes are fictional characters portrayed in books, or other forms of entertainment. Generally, they are human beings that possess supernatural or superhuman powers. They then use these superpowers to save others from villains that could not have been defeated without the help of these superheroes. Generally, these superheroes remain in disguise and hold secret identities. [ii]

The Sahabah radhiyallahu anhum are sacred beings, as they held the nobility of accompanying the Prophet Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam. Depicting the Sahabah as superheroes and attributing to them such qualities is against their honour and dignity. Moreover, depicting them in false settings and backgrounds will essentially lead one to fabricate events about the Prophet Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam, as their lives were constantly revolved around Him. Whereas, we have been commanded to exercise utmost caution in attributing anything false to the Prophet Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam. Consider this famous hadeeth:

من كذب علي متعمدا فليتوأ مقعده من النار

Translation:Whoever falsely attributes something to me should prepare his abode in the Hell Fire. ( Bukhari: 1291) look up to

Likewise, by falsely attributing superpowers or abilities to the Sahabah, this would make children believe that the Sahabah are to be admired due to their abilities. However, in reality, we revere the Sahabah due to their companionship with the Prophet Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam, which led them to develop great qualities.

Furthermore, depicting the Sahabah as superheroes will leave a false impression in their minds and leave these fictional representations in their memories. When their noble names will be mentioned, they will associate them with these false ideas.

You also enquire regarding pictures.

It is impermissible to draw or design any taswir (picture of an animate object), including a cartoon character, whether for education or any other purpose.[iii] This impermissibility is more severe when it comes to the Sahabah Radhiyallahu Anhum, as depicting them by means of pictures is disrespectful.

Evidently, an artist will not be able to accurately portray the Sahabah. Consequently, if the person tries to remember a particular Sahaabi, flashes of that picture will come into that person’s mind. Moreover, if the image was poor, this may also lead to the audience mocking and deriding the image; consequently, mocking the Sahabah (Radhiyallahu Anhum).

In conclusion, it is impermissible to author a book that depicts the Sahabah in pictures and portrays them as superheroes.

Instead of depicting the Sahabah as superheroes, you may consider authoring a book showing the Sahabah to be one’s real heroes. You may take from the stories of the sahabah mentioned in the authentic books of hadeeth and present them in easy language. You may highlight their courage, patience, perseverance and their virtues in a way that will cause the children to grow love for the Sahabah. Essentially, the goal of such a book should be to inspire love and encourage emulation. It should not just be a form of entertainment.

And Allah Ta’āla Knows Best

Mirza-Zain Ibn Ameer Baig

Student - Darul Iftaa

Montréal, Québec, Canada

Checked and Approved by,

Mufti Ebrahim Desai.

26-02-1441| 26-10-2019

[i]

فتاوى دار العلوم زكريا: زمزم:8:286

آپ کہ مسائل اور ان کا حل: مکتبہ لدہیانوی:۷:۵۰۲معارف القرآن:مكتبة معارف القرآن:7:23

[ii]

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Superhero

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/the-superheroes/201003/what-is-superhero

[iii]

فتح الملهم : دار القلم: 5:98

قد اختلف العلماء في جواز التصوير بالكاميرا. قال بعضهم أنه يجوز وقال الآخرون لا، فتأمل:القائلون بالجواز:

أما التلفزيون والفيديو فلا شك في حرمة استعمالها بالنظر إلى ما يشتملان عليه من المنكرات الكثيرة … ولكن هل ياتي فيهما حكم التصوير بحيث إذا كان التلفيزيون أو الفيديو خاليا من هذه المنكرات بأسرها هل يحرم بالنظر إلى كونه تصويرا؟ فإن لهذا العبد  الضعيف عفا الله عنه فيه وقفة، وذلك لأن الصورة المحرمة ما كانت منقوشة أو منحوتة بحيث يصبح لها صفة الإستقرار على شيء وهي الصورة التي كان الكفار يستعملونها للعبادة. أما الصورة التي ليس لها ثبات واستقرار وليست منقوشة على شيء بصفة دائمة فإنها بالظل أشبه منها بالصورة. فإن كانت صور الإنسان حية بحيث تبدوا على الشاشة في نفس الوقت الذي يظهر الانسان أمام الكاميرا فإن الصورة لاتستقر على الكاميرا ولا على الشاشة، وإنما هي أجزاء كهربائية تنتقل من الكاميرا إلى الشاشة وتظهر عليها بترتيب الأصلي ثم تنفى وتزول … فتنزيل هذه الصورة منزلة الصورة المستقرة مشكل

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