Answered by: Imam Abdul-Malik Sheikh
What is the ruling of using one’s deceased mother’s photo as a profile picture?
In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful
The majority of the jurists are of the view that painting and drawing pictures of humans and animals are unlawful and sinful.
They have based this conclusion on a number of ahadith including the following:
“The extremely tortured people on the Day of Judgment are the image-makers” (Reported by an-Nasai)
The scholars in our time have disagreed regarding photography. Some hold the view that it is prohibited based on the narrations that prohibit image-making. However, there are many contemporary scholars who allow it.
Shaykh Wahbah al-Zuhayli, who holds the latter view, says:
“As for solar or imaginary photography, this is permissible, and there is no objection to hanging imaginary pictures in homes and elsewhere, if they are not a cause for fitna, such as pictures of women in which something of their bodies is revealed.”
The scholars who hold that all forms of picture-making and photography are unlawful are of the view that photography may be permissible if there are a necessity e.g. pictures taken for passport and ID.
What can be said safely is that if the photograph does not have any use or there is no need for it, then it should be avoided. This is better for one’s piety. Hence, it will be best to avoid having the profile picture of one’s deceased mother on the various social media platforms which are out there.
Al-Bahr al-Rāiq Sharh Kanz al-Daqaiq, Vol.2, p.29, Dar al-Kitāb al-Islami
Al-Fiqh Al-Islami Wa Adillatuhu, Vol.4 p.676, Dar al-Fikr
Only Allah knows best
Answered by Imam Abdul-Malik Sheikh
Checked and approved by Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah
Darul Ifta Birmingham