Islam and Compassion for Animals

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By Barr, Abdullahi Salaty

History revealed that animals’ existence on earth preceded humankind, animals are of various species and kinds, they are also categorized according to their body structure, brain efficiency and by habitat (where they have tendency to live and survive).

By and large, animals feed, drink, sleep, reproduce and die just like humankind. I refer you to Q6:38

“There is not a moving (living) creature on earth nor a bird that flies with its two wings but are communities like you. We have neglected nothing in the Book, then unto their Lord they all shall be gathered”.

From the foregoing, animals and humankind share common characteristics of living things, the only difference is that, the latter possesses high reasoning ability which enables humans to distinguish between right and wrong. Animals are inevitable and helpful to humankind in various capacity, some serve as our daily consumption which add nutritional values to our system such as fish, ram meat, goat meat, cow meat and so on, some as a tool for farming, some as a source of transportation in carrying goods from one place to another while some as a solution to our spiritual challenges.

In conclusion, i implore Muslims across the nation and those engaging in trading of animals especially during this season of Eid el Adha to be lenient and to some extent show a little compassion for animals because Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) gave a serious warning in a number of his statements and places curse on those who maltreat animals simply because Allah (swt) subdued them for humans’ consumption.

More importantly, animals are important creatures as humankind, they share common features just like humankind, even on the day of accountability, when humankind are being called upon for the rewards of their previous deeds, animals would be resurrected as well to be rewarded for their good or bad actions, the difference is that, after proclamation of judgment on animals, thereafter, they would turn to dust while humankind would face their consequences and the evil doers and the unbelievers would lament willing to turn to dust as well in fear of a near torment. I refer you to Q79:40.
May Allah spare our life to witness the forthcoming Eid in peace and tranquility.

Thank you for your kind attention.

Al Imam, Barr, Abdullahi Salaty.
Public affairs analyst and the Chief Imam, Onimago Central Mosque, Mandate Housing Estate. Ilorin

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