Ruling on selling textbooks that contain pictures

I have a bookstore in which I sell textbooks. Sometimes we find some books contain pictures that are not compatible with Islamic teachings, so we feel uncomfortable about selling them. What is the ruling on these sales? What is the ruling on selling books of philosophy?.

Praise be to Allaah.


There is nothing wrong in principle with selling books of knowledge, even if it is not Islamic knowledge such as fiqh, hadeeth and tafseer; rather it is sufficient that these books should not contain things that are contrary to Islam and go against its rulings and etiquette.

With regard to textbooks that are used by students and universities, the need for them is greater. As for what these books contain of pictures that are not compatible with Islamic teachings, as mentioned in the question, if the pictures are few and are not sought in and of themselves, rather the purchaser buys the books because of the beneficial knowledge they contain, such as medical textbooks in which there are illustrations or books that explain by means of pictures, there is nothing wrong with buying and selling these, in sha Allah, because of the general need for them and the difficulty of avoiding the pictures they contain.

But if the seller knows that a specific purchaser is only buying the book because of the pictures in it, then he should not sell it to him.  Continue reading

Selling by instalments to the one who issued instructions to buy

I went to someone who has no money to buy a bedroom set for my marriage, then he went with me to the merchant and bought the bedroom set for me for a certain amount. Then he sold it to me by instalments for a higher price than the price for which he bought it. This kind of transaction happens with many people; each person identifies the item he wants to buy, then he buys it for him and sells it to him by instalments. Please note that this person is not specialised in any particular trade. Is this riba?.

Praise be to Allaah.

This transaction is known as a muraabahah transaction for the one who gives instructions for the purchase. Dr. Muhammad ‘Abd al-Haleem ‘Umar said in his paper at-Tafaaseel al-‘Amaliyyah li ‘Aqd al-Muraabahah, which was published in the fifth edition of Majallat Majma‘ al-Fiqh al-Islami:

Muraabahah may be done in one of two ways that were defined in classical fiqh. They are:


This may be called the general or original form. This is when someone buys an item for a certain price, then he sells it to another person for the original price plus an extra amount of profit. In this case he is buying it for himself without any prior request from anyone else, then he offers it for sale on the basis of muraabahah.  Continue reading

Selling something that is not in your possession

What is the ruling on the following way of doing trade? 
For example: someone places an advertisement to sell a mobile phone for 100 dinars, and I put this ad on the Internet. Then someone asked me on the Internet whether I would agree to sell it for 90 dinars.
Then I get in touch with the one who placed the ad and offer him 80 dinars, and he agrees to sell me the phone (for that price). 
Then I contact the person who offered 90 dinars and agree with his price. Then I buy it for 80 and sell it for 90, thus making a profit of 10 dinars.

Praise be to Allaah.

If the questioner does not sell the phone to the one who wants to buy it until after he has bought it and taken possession of it, and then sells it, there is nothing wrong with that.

But if he sold the phone before taking possession of it and completing the purchase transaction with the first owner, this kind of trade is not permissible, because it is not permissible for a person to sell something that is not in his possession, and it is not permissible for him to sell what he has bought until he has taken possession of it and moved it to his place. It was narrated that Hakeem ibn Hizaam (may Allah be pleased with him) said: I came to the Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) and said: A man may come to me wanting to buy something that I do not possess; should I buy it for him from the marketplace then sell it to him? He said: “Do not sell that which you do not possess.” Continue reading

Ruling on buying tickets for sports games and concerts then selling them for a higher price

I was wondering whether it is permissible to sell tickets after buying them so that I can make some money on that? I buy the tickets for the price for which they are sold, and after that I sell them at the going price so that I can make some profit when the value of those tickets goes up. This has to do with both sports matches and concerts, but lately I have been thinking about whether this money is haraam according to Islam? Can you explain to me more about that?.

Praise be to Allaah.

The ruling on selling tickets and making a profit on them is based on the ruling on going to those places for which you bought the tickets. If it is permissible for you to go and watch, it is permissible to buy the tickets and then sell them at a profit after that. If it is not permissible for you to go to those places because of the evils and haraam things in them, it is not permissible to attend them for free and it is not permissible to buy tickets for them and it is not permissible to sell them to anyone, even if the one to whom it is sold is not Muslim.

Based on what you mention of examples (matches and concerts), these are – in most cases – places that it is not permissible for a Muslim to attend or watch what goes on in them, because it involves obvious evils.  Continue reading

Ruling on buying and selling land

If according to Islam is it permissible to earn/profit out of the investing in land/property. Thank you very much for your help in advance.

Praise be to Allaah.

Buying and selling land is permissible because it is included in the meaning of the verse in which Allah says (interpretation of the meaning): “Allaah has permitted trading” [al-Baqarah 2:275].

That applies whether it is for investment and profit, or in order to make use of it and benefit from it.

But trading is subject to certain conditions in order to be valid, including:

1.     The land in question should be clearly known, as should the price, so that both the buyer and seller will be aware of what is going on

2.     The transaction should be by mutual consent.

For more information please see the answer to question no. 103149

And Allah knows best. Continue reading

A riba-based trick when selling phone cards

I sell Siwa phone cards by instalments to teachers, whereby I give the cards to the teacher with a contract, and usually after signing the contract the teacher returns the cards to me and asks me to sell them for her because she does not know how to do that. After that, I sell the cards to the distributor from whom I bought the cards, because it is easier to sell them back to him. Is there anything Islamically wrong with that?.

Praise be to Allaah.


There is nothing wrong with you selling Siwa cards to the teachers by instalments, even if it is for a higher price than the price for cash.  Continue reading

Selling worked gold for ingots with a payment for the work

Is it permissible to sell ingots for worked gold with a payment for the work done?.

Praise be to Allaah.

Selling worked gold for ingots with a payment for the work done, such as selling one kilo of worked gold and taking in return more than one kilo of ingots, in return for the work done, or taking one kilo along with some money in return for the work, is haraam and is a form of riba. If gold is sold for gold, it must be like for like, whether the gold has been worked or is in the form of ingots. Hence the fuqaha’ said: ingots, gold that has been worked into jewellery and the like and gold that has been made into coins are all the same, and the fact that it has been worked does not count. If the transaction is not completed hand to hand, this is riba al-nasee’ah, and the transaction then includes two types of riba – riba al-nasee’ah and riba al-fadl. Continue reading

Selling gold rings to men

What is the ruling on selling gold rings that are designed to be worn by men, if the seller is certain that the buyer will wear it?.

Praise be to Allaah.

Selling gold rings to men, if the seller knows that the buyer is going to wear it or he thinks it most likely that he will wear it, it is haraam to sell it to him, because gold is forbidden to the males of this ummah. So if he knows or thinks it most likely that he will wear it, then he is helping in sin, and Allaah has forbidden us to help one another in sin and transgression, as He says (interpretation of the meaning):

“Help you one another in Al‑Birr and At‑Taqwa (virtue, righteousness and piety); but do not help one another in sin and transgression”

[al-Maa’idah 5:2]

It is not permissible for a goldsmith to make gold rings to be worn by men. Continue reading

Prohibition of selling bills of exchange to the bank

Some businessmen are owed money by their customers, so they go to the bank and sell the bill of exchange to them for an amount that is less than the amount specified in the bill of exchange. Then the bank collects the debt for itself when it becomes due. What is the ruling on this?.

Praise be to Allaah.

This transaction is one of the transactions that are haraam, and it is a form of riba (usury, interest).

Because selling a bill of exchange – for example – which mentions a debt of one thousand riyals to be paid in one month’s time to the bank for nine hundred riyals to be paid immediately, is riba. The scholars are unanimously agreed that this haraam transaction is both riba al-nasee’ah and riba al-fadl combined, because it involves exchanging currency available immediately for currency of the same kind to be paid later, plus an extra amount.  Continue reading

Ruling on selling a visa to a worker with his consent

I hope that you can give me the shar’i ruling on selling a visa to a worker so that he can use it. Please note that I want to open a store for this worker, and the sale will be done with the consent of both parties, and there is no pressure on him.
The second thing is that if selling the visa is haraam, is it haraam to make him pay the cost of the visa, which is 2000 riyals and the costs of the person who does the paperwork?.

Praise be to Allaah.

If this worker is sponsored by you and is going to work for you, then it is not permissible for you to sell the visa to him, and it is also not permissible for you to make him pay the costs, because that is contrary to the state system which dictates that these costs should be paid by the business owner, not the worker. Continue reading