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IslamQA: On the hadiths of the punishment of image-makers (al-muṣawwirūn)

Salam, Im so glad youre answering questions again. I just wanted to ask how can I reconcile the hadith “The most severely punished people o‎n the Day of Resurrection would be the image-makers (al-musawwiroon).” [Al-Bukhaaree 7/540, no.834; Muslim 3/1161, no.5272, 5270] with the scholarly view point that drawing living things is permissible?

Due to the scarcity of the textual evidence, there is no consensus on what the Prophet may have meant when he used the word al-muṣawwirūn (image-makers). Some scholars, such as al-Nawawī, interpret it as meaning that all images of living things are forbidden, while others (such as al-Ṭabarī) interpret it as referring to pictures and statues intended for worship. Modern scholars who have looked at the evidence have noted that there are narrations where the Prophet approves of putting images of living things on cushions and garments and approves of dolls, including a toy horse with wings, therefore many have concluded that only items intended for worship are forbidden.

For a longer discussion please see this article: A Traditionalist Critique of the Islamic Prohibition on Taṣwīr

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