Speaking in languages other than Arabic

Answered according to Hanafi Fiqh by

Q: What is the ruling on people who are capable of speaking Arabic, speaking in languages other than Arabic with one another? For example, `Ulama speaking in Urdu with one another, or English, instead of Arabic? I have come across certain narration from Hadhrat Umar ibn al-Khattaab رضي الله عنه as well as some other Sahaabah, in which they discouraged people from speaking in a language other than Arabic. There is also a Riwaayat which states that whosoever is capable of speaking in Arabic should not speak in non-Arabic for that causes Nifaaq. It is also mentioned that Imaam Ahmad ibn Hanbal رحمة الله عليه regarded it as Makrooh for a person to use non-Arabic words to describe the days and months, etc. Taking all of this into consideration, Mufti Saheb, what is the ruling on people learning and speaking languages such as Urdu, Gujarati, Farsi, English, etc. rather than Arabic? Is it permissible to do so? And if it is permissible, is there Karaahiyat in doing so?


A: The ulama have allowed the use of all languages. These quotations will apply to people who know and speak the Arabic language well.

And Allah Ta’ala (الله تعالى) knows best.


Answered by:

Mufti Ebrahim Salejee (Isipingo Beach)

This answer was collected from, where the questions have been answered by Mufti Zakaria Makada (Hafizahullah), who is currently a senior lecturer in the science of Hadith and Fiqh at Madrasah Ta’leemuddeen, Isipingo Beach, South Africa.

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