Zabeeha & Non-Zabeeha

Allah Taãla says in the Noble Quran:

Today I have made permissible for you pure things and the food of those who for you.

(Quran 5:4)
Overtly the above verse reads that the Zabeeha (ذَبِيْحَة) of the Ahlul-Kitaab is permissible, but the fundamental principle must be understood in order to understand the Quran i.e. ‘One part of the Quran explains the other’. Therefore, this verse should be understood in the light of another verse relating to the same matter:

Do not eat unless Allah’s name has been taken and this (not taking Allah’s name) practice is transgression.

(Quran 6:121)
While the former verse explicitly states that the Zabeeha of the Ahlul-Kitaab is permissible and the latter says, ‘Do not eat unless Allah’s name has been taken’, in the light of both these verses, it is understood that the Zabeeha of the Ahlul-Kitaab is permissible only if the name of Allah is taken at the time of slaughtering. Zabeeha (ذَبِيْحَة) is the prescribed method of slaughter for all permissible meat sources, excluding fish and other sea-life, per Islamic law.

He hath forbidden you only carrion, and blood, and swine flesh, and that on which hath been invoked any other name besides Allah’s.

Al-Baqara 2:173

And eat of what Allah hath given you (for food) that which is lawful and wholesome, and fear Allah in whom ye believe.

Al-Maida 5:88
The Muslim slaughter man says “Bismillah” (“In the name of Allah”) Allah Hu Akbar. Then, the animal must be slaughtered with a sharp knife by cutting the throat, windpipe and the blood vessels in the neck (while the animal is conscious), causing the animal’s death without cutting the spinal cord. Finally, the blood from the veins must be drained. This final step is performed because blood can harbour harmful bacteria, and also to ensure that there are no blood clots, thus keeping the entire body safe and clean to be eaten.

Halal Zabeeha is One of the Most Humane Methods of Animal Slaughter. Muslims are taught through the Quran that all animals should be treated with respect and well cared for. The objective is to slaughter the animal, limiting the amount of pain the animal will encounter. It is forbidden to beat animals unnecessarily, to brand them on the face, or to allow them to fight each other for human entertainment. “They must not be mutilated while they are alive”.

There is not an animal in the earth, nor a flying creature flying on two wings, but they are peoples like unto you. We have neglected nothing in the Book (of Our decrees). Then unto their Lord they will be gathered.

Al-Anam 6:38

Muhammad is also reported to have said (Narrated by Ibn Omar and Abdallah bin Al-As): will be gathered.

Al-Anam 6:38
There is no man who kills (even) a sparrow or anything smaller, without its deserving it, but God will question him about it (on the judgment day),” and “Whoever is kind to the creatures of God is kind to himself.”


The above references remind us that animals are living creatures with feelings and connections to the larger spiritual and physical world. We must consider their lives as worthwhile and esteemed.


Note: Dhabīḥah & Zabeeha are same words.