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Slaughtering animals as guided by Allah

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12th-Sep-2016       
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Dr. M. Laiq Ali Khan :
Zabih is an indispensable act expected from Muslims to make the flesh of an animal eatable. This act is inherited from Prophet Ibrahim (As) who slaughtered the animal under the direction of Allah and  only then he ate the meat. It is forbidden in Islam to cut only part of a living animal and eat without slaughtering the whole.
Prophet Muhammad (Pbuh) came to Madinah and followed this practice there. Abul Naqid Ullaisi states that when the Prophet came to Madinah, the people had the habit of cutting down the hips of living goats and the humps of living camels for eating. The Prophet said about this : If a piece from the living animal is cut down, then it is termed as murdar.
Islam forbids any kind of atrocity on animals and even in sacrificing or slaughtering animals, it has given clear directives which do not harm the animal or cause pain to it. There are several ways in vogue to kill the animal prior to eating since time immemorial. The early days of civilisation reveal that the primitive man used to kill the animal before consuming, by stoning it to death which was very painful for the animal. Islam forbids this because stoning or hurting the animal produces vaso-vagal shock and a biochemical substance known as Histamine is released. This dialates the blood vessels and the blood is retained inside the flesh.
In the Quran, a word zakia used for sticking- that means to clean. The flesh becomes eatable and clean after sticking. Jews observe these rules strictly very similarly to Muslims. Very often, it is questioned whether the flesh procured from the animals slaughtered by Jews or Christians is Halal? In this context, I have gone through various references and found that the Quran has fixed a condition for sticking as you eat such things without any fear on which the name of Allah is pronounced and this is in such condition when you are a believer in His signs.
The Hadith specifies two conditions for lawful Islamic sticking-one, the animal should be stuck in the name of Allah by reciting His name. Secondly, the blood should be let out completely from the vessels of the neck without cutting the spinal chord to save the animal from going into a state of shock.
As far as pronouncing the name of Allah is concerned, the Jews do it, but in their mother tongue, similar to the directions of Islam. Ibn-e-Taymia advocates that in Surah-al-Maidah in the Quran, it has been stated that food from the People of the Book can be consumed. The basic concept behind sticking in Islam is that the blood should be let out completely. The Prophet said : Let the knives be sharpened and concealed from the animals and whenever you do the sticking, it should be quick.
Mohammed bin Safwan narrates that he passed by Prophet Muhammad (Sm) with two hanging rabbits and asked Oh! Prophet (Sm), I found these two rabbits, but did not find any iron thing to stick them, then I stuck them by a white sharp edge stone. May I eat them ? The Prophet replied, do eat.
Kab bin Malik (Ra) narrates : My flock of goats were grazing on Salaa mountain. My servant saw that a goat was about to die, she broke up a stone and stuck it with that stone. When he enquired about it from the Prophet, he ordered to eat that.
Adi bin Hatim (Ra) narrates :
I asked the Prophet to tell us, if we got a prey and if we did not have any knife then could it be stuck with a piece of stone or wood? He replied, you are allowed as per your convenience, to let out the blood and pronounce the name of Allah.
The Hadith specifies two conditions for lawful Islamic sticking-one the animal should be stuck in the name of Allah by reciting His name. Secondly, the blood should be let out completely from the vessels of the neck without cutting the spinal chord to save the animal from going into a state of shock. To let out the blood easily and completely, it is very crucial to cut down the jugular veins and carotid arteries along with other structures passing though the neck except spinal cord which transmits the nerve impulses to the distal parts. These impulses produce jerks in the distal tissues of the body to remove the blood.
On the contrary, some communities use another procedure called Jhatka in which the neck of the animal is cut-down in a single blow by a sword. As a result of the cut on the spinal cord, the animal is in a state of shock. Hence, the blood is retained in the tissues and a bio-chemical substance, Histamine is released.
The Halal  meat was given to eat to certain non-Muslims and their views were recorded about its taste and smell as a trial. And it was seen that the Halal meat was found to be more tasty by them. There are several ways to stick the animals on a large scale. Very often, the animals are stunned, then they are lifted and hung with their neck and head downwards. A knife is used then to cut down the neck, but this procedure is against the Islamic spirit because stunning animal produces surgical shock prior to sticking, which is clearly forbidden in Islam.
-www.islamawareness.netiEid/azha.html.

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