The Method of Disposing of Religious Material

Answered according to Hanafi Fiqh by Mathabah.org

Answered by Shaykh Omar Subedar

Question:

I have a frame in which the four sūrahs are written with glass paints. When we moved, it broke and I could not fix it. I do not know what to do. Somebody told me to remove the writing with some sharp thing and then recycle the glass. I did that but I can still see the inscription when looking in the light. I don’t want to do anything disrespectful. Please guide me.  ā

Answer:

In respect to disposing of material with sacred texts on it, scholars get direction from the following account;

Anas رضى الله عنه reported, “Hudhayfa ibn Al Yamān approached `Uthmān when the Syrians were fighting in the conquest of Armenia. Hudhayfa was alarmed by the difference in their recitation so he told `Uthmān, “Grab hold of this nation before they begin differing on the book [of Allāh] just as the Jews and Christians differed!”

Hence `Uthmān sent a message to Ḥafsa [the Prophet’s صلى الله عليه وسلم wife], “Send the manuscripts [of the Qur’ān] to us [which are in your possession] so we can copy them. We’ll return them to you [when we’re done].”

Ḥafsa sent them to `Uthmān and subsequently `Uthmān ordered Zaid ibn Thābit, `Abdullāh ibn Al Zubair, Sa’īd ibn Al `Āās, and `Abdur Raḥmān ibn Al Ḥārith ibn Al Hishām to copy them out. As a result they copied them out [making several copies].

When they finished copying out the manuscripts, `Uthmān returned them to Ḥafsa and then sent a copy of what they transcribed to every region. He then commanded that every sheet or copy which has any [other] form of the Qur’ān be burned. [Bukhārī]

Hence the proper way of dealing with such material is to burn it. If this is not possible as it seems in your case then you should find a place to bury it as per the recommendation of scholars.

And Allāh Knows Best

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