The Office of the Supreme Leader

Practical Laws of Islam

  • Rules of Taqlīd
  • Rules on Purity
  • Prayer
  • Fasting
  • Khums
  • Jihad
  • Enjoining the Good and Forbidding Evil
  • Ḥarām Gains
  • Chess and Gambling Instruments
    • Chess
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      Q1109. Playing chess has become commonplace in most schools. Do you sanction it and organizing courses to teach it?
      A: From the mukallaf’s perspective, should it not now be considered among the instruments of gambling, there is no objection to playing it provided that no betting is involved.
      Q1110.What is the ruling on playing for amusement, such as with a deck of cards, especially when there is no betting involved?
      A: Playing with that which is considered by common view among the instruments of gambling is absolutely ḥarām, even if it is just for amusement and without placing a bet.
      Q1111. What is the ruling on chess in the following situations?
      1. The manufacture, sale, and purchase of chess instruments [chessboard/chessmen].
      2. Playing chess with/without a bet.
      3. Establishing centers at public places where it could be played, taught, or promoted.
      A: Should the mukallaf be of the opinion that chess is not considered now among gambling instruments, there is no objection to their being manufactured, sold, bought, and played with — but without betting. The same rule is applied to its teaching.
      Q1112. Can the mukallaf deem the approval of the physical education department to hold chess competitions as an indication that chess is not among the instruments of gambling? And is it permissible for the mukallaf to depend on such a thing?
      A: The yardstick in specifying the instance of rulings is the determination of the mukallaf himself or his having a shar‘ī proof to that effect.
      Q1113. What is the ruling on playing chess and billiard, for example, with non-Muslims in foreign countries? And what is the ruling on money spent in this avenue, although not in betting?
      A: We have already dealt with the subject of playing with chess and gambling instruments in the preceding questions. However, the ruling is universal insofar as engaging in such an activity, i.e., be it in Muslim or foreign countries. Playing with Muslims or non-Muslims is also immaterial. It is not permissible to sell or buy gambling instruments, or spend any money in such an avenue.
    • Gambling Instruments
  • Music and Ghinā’
  • Dancing
  • Clapping
  • Non-maḥrams’ Pictures and Films
  • Satellite Television Equipment
  • Theatre and Cinema
  • Painting and Sculpture
  • Magic, Conjuring, and Evocation of Spirits and Jinn
  • Hypnosis
  • Lottery
  • Bribery
  • Medical Issues
  • Teaching, Learning and Their Proprieties
  • Copyrights
  • Dealing with non-Muslims
  • Working for Oppressive States
  • Rules on Clothing and Conspicuous ones
  • Treating the West
  • Smoking and Narcotics
  • Shaving the Beard
  • Attending Gatherings of Debauchery
  • Writing Supplications and Istikhārah
  • Religious Events
  • Hoarding and Extravagance
  • Buying and Selling
  • Miscellaneous Issues in Business
  • Rules Concerning Ribā
  • Right of Pre-emption
  • Hiring, Renting, and Lease
  • Surety
  • Pawning and Mortgaging
  • Partnership
  • Presents and Gifts
  • Debt and Loan
  • Ṣulḥ
  • Power of Attorney
  • Mustaḥabb Alms
  • Deposits and Loaned Properties
  • Leaving a Will
  • Usurpation
  • Placement under Guardianship and Signs of Maturity
  • Silent Partnership
  • Banking
  • State Property
  • Endowments
  • Rules Concerning Graveyards
  • Glossary
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