Monday, November 20, 2017 - 2 Rabi' al-Awwal 1439

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Using modern devices for educational purposes in mosques, is it permissible?

We are Muslims living in the USA. The mosque's administration has recently fixed screens in the main prayer hall to play videos on charity, mosque expansions, da'wah tutorials along with melodious nasheeds. The videos are screened right before or after obligatory prayers' timings so everyone can benefit from them. Is this permissible inside the mosque?

Answer


The mosque in Islam is a big institution
In Islam, the mosque is one of the basic institutions that plays a major role in promoting truth, justice, knowledge, and goodness within the community. As places of congregation, mosques provide Muslims with regular opportunities of acquiring knowledge and engaging in a unique social platform. These are the fundamentals upon which the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) established his mosque when he came to Medinah.
Back in the early days of Islam, the mosque presented numerous important functions that include, but were not limited to, social gatherings, educational classes, court sessions, hospital, house of treasury etc. The mosque was part and parcel of the Muslim community's fabric.
Lady 'Aisha (may God be pleased with her) narrated that the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “Publicize these marriages, conduct them in mosques, and beat the duff (tambourines) to announce them” (Tirmidhi).
To promote Islam and serve Da'wah purposes, the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) used to receive delegations, of different faiths, in his mosque. For instance, he received Najran's Christian delegation and others in his mosque for mutual discussions and interactions. The Prophet's biography is replete with examples that attest to the role the mosque plays in the society.

Present-day mosques
Though it is considered a big institution in Islam, the role of present-day mosques is restricted to observing regular rituals such as prayers, Quran recitation, and i`tikaf (spiritual retreat). This, in turn, led to confusion with respect to the things that mosques could offer to Muslims other than the established rituals.
Consequently, there is no harm in using modern devices inside the mosque with the purpose of educating or raising people's awareness on certain values or matters. It is established that whatever comes in the best interest of Muslims is deemed permissible, provided it is used within the etiquettes prescribed in the Shari'ah. The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) started a small school in his mosque where he, along with the Companions, conducted lectures on Quran and the ethical values of Islam.

Ruling
Based on the above and in reference to the question, it is permissible and there is no objection to playing these videos inside the mosque as long as they are screened outside the obligatory prayers' timings and provide beneficial material to the congregation.
 

Related links
» Neglecting religious duties out of laziness
» Using an electronic device to monitor prayer movements
» The obligation to make up missed prayers
» Missing Friday Prayer due to office hours
» Are menstruating women allowed to enter the mosque?