Celebrating weddings is a celebration that is prescribed in sharee’ah, because it is a great blessing from Allaah, Who has enabled the couple to find a means of happiness and a way to achieve modesty and chastity. People have always expressed their joy for this blessing since ancient times and they still do so today, and that takes various forms and involves different customs in different societies and countries.
The aim of Islamic sharee’ah is not to put pressure on people with regard to their customs or try to make them follow only one custom, rather studying sharee’ah will show that with regard to customs the matter is broad in scope and in principle customs are permissible, with some limits and guidelines.
The Muslim is recommended to follow the customs of his people and he is forbidden to go against them, so long as they do not go against the rulings of sharee’ah or cause any hardship or embarrassment to people. The scholars ruled that it is recommended to be similar to the people in their customs by analogy with the ruling that it is recommended to be similar to them in dress. There is a hadeeth concerning that which forbids being different from people in dress so that one becomes known among people for the way he dresses. It was narrated that Ibn ‘Umar (may Allaah be pleased with him) said:
The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Whoever wears a garment of fame and vanity, Allaah will clothe him in a garment of humiliation on the Day of Resurrection.”
Narrated by Ibn Majaah (3606); classed as hasan by Shaykh al-Albaani in Saheeh Ibn Majaah.
Fame and vanity in clothing means wearing something that is extraordinarily expensive or extraordinarily ragged. The salaf disliked both kinds of standing out: wearing expensive clothing or wearing ragged clothing.
It says something similar in Majmoo’ al-Fataawa by Ibn Taymiyah (22/138).
Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen (may Allaah have mercy on him) said in al-Sharh al-Mumti’ (6/115):
We must highlight this point, that going along with customs so long as they are not haraam is the Sunnah, because going against customs is a kind of vanity, and the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) forbade the dress of fame and vanity, so that which goes against customs is also forbidden. End quote.
Hence we advise you to hold a wedding celebration and we ask Allaah to bless it. You should do it in accordance with the custom and tradition of people in your country, and you should not try to cast off all of their customs. All that you have to do is reject and avoid those customs that are haraam, such as using music – apart from the daff – and mixing between men and women.
There are many more things that are permissible – praise be to Allaah – than those that are haraam. Singing that is not accompanied by music, making food, bringing people together, wearing adornments are all things that are permitted by sharee’ah, so use whatever of those things you think is appropriate and that people like and ask Allaah to guide you in all of that.
With regard to having a wedding party in the Islamic manner, you have to keep away from the things which are forbidden in sharee’ah but which many people do not pay attention to during celebrations, such as the following:
With regard to the woman: going to a male, non-mahram hairdresser to have her hair done; or adorning herself in ways that are haraam, such as thinning the eyebrows by plucking them, or wearing tattoos, or wearing hair extensions, or other kinds of haraam things, because the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) cursed the one who plucks eyebrows and the one who has that done, the one who adds hair extensions and the one who asks to have that done; imitating the kuffaar in their dress, because usually the wedding dress shows many of the woman’s charms and her body, in such a way that the dress is very revealing – we seek refuge with Allaah – and also a great deal of money is wasted on the dress.
Among the haraam actions that have to do with the man are: shaving his beard for the wedding night, which is done on the grounds that this makes him look more handsome, but this is something which is haraam according to sharee’ah; letting one’s clothes hang below the ankle (isbaal).
There follows a list of haraam things which both men and women should avoid in the wedding party:
1- Mixing of men with women, and things that are involved in that, such as greeting and shaking hands with one another, and men and women dancing together, because all of that is haraam and is a very serious matter.
2- Taking pictures, whether men do that amongst themselves or women do that amongst themselves.
3- Drinking alcohol or eating pork.
4- Letting the husband come in to where the women are in order to take his wife.
5- Women wearing revealing, tight or short clothes amongst themselves, because this is haraam – so how about wearing such things in front of men?
6- People should avoid spending extravagantly or going to extremes in showing off in wedding parties, because that may wipe out the blessing.
7- The husband and wife exchanging rings and thus imitating the kuffaar, thinking that this will increase the husband’s love for his wife and vice versa.
Finally, both partners should know that the more the teachings of Islam are followed in the wedding party, the more blessed their marriage will be, the more love and harmony there will be between them, and the less problems they will encounter in their married life. For if the married life is based from the outset on haraam things which go against the commands of Allaah, how can they expect the marriage to be successful after that? There have been many marriages in which there were things that went against the commands of Allaah, and they did not last. Fear Allaah with regard to this party and keep it free of things that are forbidden in Islam. May Allaah bless you both. We ask Allaah to give you and your husband strength. May Allaah bless our Prophet Muhammad.
And Allaah knows best.