Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh,
Is the Mawlid during the birth month of the Prophet Muhammad (SAW) allowed? If so, are using musical instruments allowed during the Mawlid because it’s a special occasion, or should the instruments be left out?
Commemorating the birth of the Holy Messenger, Muhammad ﷺ is permissible and praiseworthy but should not be restricted to the day of his birth alone.
The scholars, particularly those associated with the Deoband madrasa, observed and denounced the numerous forms of immorality and innovation often associated with mawlid celebrations. The immorality we see prevalent in many such gatherings is music, free-mixing of men and women, and upping the ante year upon year in extravagant lights, decorations, cakes and so forth. As for the various innovations involved, many participants are hostile to those who do not believe it is necessary. In a similar vein, some communities believe it necessary to celebrate mawlid in a certain way, thereby looking down on or even defaming more modest festivities. It is also reported that some stand reciting their salawat, believing the Prophet ﷺ to be present among them. May Allah forgive us all.
If the birth of the Holy Messenger ﷺ is celebrated without bending the rules of the Shari’a, it is permissible. As Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanawi said: “If it is free from innovation (bid’at) and immorality (qaba’ih), what could be better than this?” Maulana Thanawi has written a comprehensive treatise on praiseworthy, lawful and unlawful forms of mawlid gatherings and the shar‘i principles governing its celebration. It has been translated into English, so please refer to it for further guidance.
A Muslim’s ultimate goal of commemorating the Prophet ﷺ is emulating his ways – on the Day of Mawlid and beyond. The Prophet ﷺ was not sent to this earth for us to commemorate him in a symbolic event of music and innovation on a single day and then to return to a life devoid of his emulation.
 Maulana Ashraf ‘Ali Thanawi, Imdad al-Fatawa, Dar al-Isha’at, 5: 259-60; See also Maulana Khalil Ahmad Saharanpuri, al-Muhannad ‘ala Mufannad, Dar al-Fath, 81-3.
Maulana Ikramul Hoque Miah
Checked & Approved by:
Mufti Abdul Rahman Mangera
Mufti Zubair Patel