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Meaning of Makrüh

Makrüh- An Arabic word

Contemporary Fiqh defines Makrüh as a judgement in Islamic law that an action is disliked, loathsome or detested, but one is not accountable for doing something unlawful if he or she commits a Makrüh act. So it is essentially something that one should stay away from, but one will not be held accountable if one does it.

The early scholars used the term and its derivatives in a wider sense, that is, they used it for something that there was a prohibition against, or an indication of a prohibition against it. Yet, there were reasons that they did not feel confident enough to label it “-Iarãm” or absolutely unlawful.

This means that one may find At-Tirmidhi saying: “About it being disliked to do this or that” and one must understand that the topic in question may in fact be considered absolutely unlawful, based upon the evidence produced.

Additionally, it would be incorrect to say that At-Tirmidhi only considered the thing to be “disliked” when he uses such expressions. Rather, it is an indication that this evidence indicates – or almost indicates – that the action is unlawful.

SOURCE:  English Translation of Jami` At-Tirmidhi (Volume 1)-Muhammed b. Isa et-Tirmiz

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