Answered by: Maulana Mohammed Dilwar Hussain
A sister had some soft toys (animals like lambs, tigers, et.) in her childhood she was very attached to and unable to get rid of even after becoming an adult. However, recently she has been fearing the warnings against such toys held by many scholars and wants to try getting rid of them.
Her mother follows the opinion of some scholars that soft toys are permissible for children and does not want to throw them away, as she believes it would be israf, and instead wants to give them away to children. Her daughter is afraid of falling into sin by giving them away due to following the opinion that such toys are not permissible even for children, and wants to throw them into the trash or burn them. Her mother gets very upset at this idea, as she bought the toys for her daughter.
What is to be done in this case? How should the daughter proceed without upsetting her mother? Would it be possible to cover the faces of the soft toys by stitching some kind of material over them and then giving them away? What if the families who receive them then uncover their faces, would the daughter take part in that sin? Would it be permissible to simply give them away to a masjid and leave the responsibility of throwing them away or altering them to whoever receives them? If the daughter cannot compromise with her mother, would it be sinful to keep the toys hidden in a box, untouched and unseen?
In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful
Mother of the believing Muslims, A’ishah RA says, “I used to play with the dolls in the presence of the Prophet ﷺ, and my girlfriends also used to play with me. When Allāh’s Messenger ﷺ used to enter (my house) they used to hide, but the Prophet ﷺ would call them to join and play with me. [Sahih Al-Bukhari; Hadith 6130]
In Fathul Bari under the explanation of this Hadith, it is explained that in “Al-Quniyah”: that it was permitted for girls (to play with them), and the reality in the past was that they used to take a garment and put it in the middle, it would not take the form or shape of any living thing. It was not like what our daughters play with today, for they are similar to idols, so it would not be permissible at all (to play with them).
Based on this, the most suitable method would be to simply dispose of any toys which have facial or human attributes. Any toys which do not have these, for instance, toy cars, phones and etc. It would be permitted for you to keep them.
Only Allāh knows best.
Written by Maulana Mohammed Dilwar Hussain
Checked and approved by Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah
Darul Ifta Birmingham
حَدَّثَنَا مُحَمَّدٌ، أَخْبَرَنَا أَبُو مُعَاوِيَةَ، حَدَّثَنَا هِشَامٌ، عَنْ أَبِيهِ، عَنْ عَائِشَةَ ـ رضى الله عنها ـ قَالَتْ كُنْتُ أَلْعَبُ بِالْبَنَاتِ عِنْدَ النَّبِيِّ صلى الله عليه وسلم وَكَانَ لِي صَوَاحِبُ يَلْعَبْنَ مَعِي، فَكَانَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم إِذَا دَخَلَ يَتَقَمَّعْنَ مِنْهُ، فَيُسَرِّبُهُنَّ إِلَىَّ فَيَلْعَبْنَ مَعِي.
في القنية: أن البنات جائزة، وكانت حقيقتها في القديم أنهم كانوا يأخذون ثوبًا، ويشدونَه في الوسط، فكانت لا تحي عن صورة وشكل، ولم تكن كبناتنا اليوم، فإنَّها تماثيل كالأصنام، فلا تجوز قطعًا