following is the transcription of the lecture given by Shaykh Muhammad
Bazmool (hafidhahullah) :
Fiqh Principle of Istihala – Changing from impure to pure
entirely from a dars given by Sh. Muhammad Bazmool, Professor at Umm ul
Qura Makkah translated by Moosa Richardson and a fatwa given by Shaykh
Istihala is when
something becomes pure. It was najis (impure)
but it is now taahir
(pure). A good example would be maitah (animal
carcass): it is najis, but should it be burned and become
decompose and become earth, then it is taahir, it is no longer
najis. This can happen with dung or feces or
something changes from one property to another, then the ruling
Example: Let us say that someone uses the fat of a dead
animal to make
soap. That fat is najis, but the chemical change that it was
through makes it taahir.
Ibn Hazm put it concisely when he said,
"Ruling upon an object is upon what
it is named (what it is), if the name (what it is) changes then so does
He also mentioned in his book of fiqh, Al-Muhalla: "If
the quality of the substance of naturally impure objects changes the
name which was given to it so that it is no more applicable to it and
it is given a new name which is given to a pure object, so it is no
more an impure thing. It becomes a new object, with a new
Meaning that if the natural composition of a substance changes to
another substance of a different composition, so much so that you can
no longer call the new substance by the name of what it was-- ruling
upon that substance changes too.
The companions (radyallahu anhum) used to eat a cheese that came from
the land of the disbelievers. In that cheese was a part of
which was slaughtered by the disbelievers in a way that is not in
accordance with Islaam. The companions knew this, but they
that the prohibition was upon the calf, what is directly from the calf,
and what could be properly called part of the calf; the ruling is not
upon that which you cannot identify as part of the calf nor is it
called any longer such-and-such part of the calf. This is
Another proof from the Sunnah: The Prophet (sallallahu
sallam) forbade making vinegar out of wine, but he said that if you
should come across vinegar that has been made from wine then it is
The ruling is upon what the object is, and not what it
was. Wine is
haraam; vinegar is not, and before the wine became an intoxicant, it
was halaal. Why? Because it was fruit before that.
Allah says in the Qur'an:
surely there is a lesson for you in the cattle we give you to drink of
what is in their bellies from between the feces and blood, pure milk,
wholesome to those who drink it." (16:66)
Allah is putting forth an example for us of how something pure can come
from something impure.
And we can also use as proof something that we've already gone
over. The Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) said that
hide of maitah (the carrion) is tanned, then it is
(sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) gave us a method to purify something
which was first impure.
Let us examine things we are familiar with: mono and diglycerides,
whey, gluten, emulsifiers, gelatin,
and whatever else is on the international haraam list. These
by-products sometimes come from animals, pigs even, in which case the
ruling on the initial substances is that they are
haraam. But the
initial substances (e.g. fat, marrow, cartilage, etc.) are put through
chemical change so that you no longer can even call it "pig fat" or
"animal bone" or "skin" or "cartilage", etc. because it is no longer
that, hence it is taahir, it is
What is gelatin? As Oxford dictionary of science
colorless or pale yellow, water-soluble protein obtained by boiling
collagen with water and evaporating the solution. It melts
is added and dissolves in hot water to form a solution that sets to a
gel on cooling." (page 290)
Is this a chemical change or is this not a chemical
change? Is it
protein any longer? No, it is not.
You are in disbelief so you ask, "But
how can it be halaal when it came from something haraam?"
Because of the proofs mentioned above, the ruling is not based upon what it was,
the ruling is based upon what it is. A
Hanafi scholar, Ibn Abedin gave the example: "the swine
in a salt lake and decomposes and becomes salt itself, is now halaal."
other Hanafi scholars go on to say: "salt is different from meat and
bones. If they become salt, they are salt."
To take the salt example further: salt consists of sodium
(NaCl) when together they are the halaal food known as salt, when
separated they make up two poisonous substances which are then haraam
ahnaaf (Hanafis) also use as an example the human semen, saying that it
is najis, then when it inseminates the egg and becomes a blood clot it
is still najis, but when it becomes flesh it is no longer
the ahnaaf are not the only ones who take this position.
The examples are numerous and they extend beyond
food: Yesterday a man
was kaafir and going towards Hell, today he is Muslim, so what is the
ruling upon him? It is based upon what he is today.
We must be careful when we call things haraam because it is a form of
thulm (oppression) . Scholars have said that it is worse
that you make
something halaal to haraam rather than making something haraam
to halaal. This deen Allah has made yusr (easy) let us
not make it
'usr (hard). Wallahu 'Alim.