One Stop shop for Daily Digest - News, Views and analysis of the political developments of the Horn of Africa. Now you can follow by email alerts situated at the bottom. Please feel free to forward any item of interest - it is your blog too (Make it your Home Page)
WATCH: WhatsApp emojis 'haram', says Muslim preacher
Filed on May 6, 2016 | Last updated on May 6, 2016 at 07.00 am
Saudi-based Akkari 'forbids' the use of certain emojis for Muslims. Here they are...
A Saudi Arabia-based preacher has warned Muslims against using certain 'emojis', calling them 'haram' and blasphemous.
In a video posted on his YouTube page, Wajdi Akkari, 36, said it was 'haram' or forbidden for Muslims to use specific emojis or emoticons such as the angel, the devil or even the prayer symbol.
Known for his animated speeches, the preacher tells his audience and viewers to avoid those emojis.
'You have to be selective in these emojis. Not everything is halal [permissible] to share.'
Commenting on the angel emoji, he says:
'When someone wants to share their innocence or say, 'I'm a good boy', they send that yellow smiley face with a halo. No! Wajdi Akkari In a video shared by the Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI), he said the angel with a halo was a Christian interpretation of the entity and therefore 'haram'. When someone wants to share their innocence or say, "I'm a good boy", they send that yellow smiley face with a halo. No! 'Do we believe that angels in Islam are like the angels in Christianity... Absolutely not.''
Akkari further claims using any 'devilish' emojis are also out of bounds for Muslims. He said: 'We don't know what Satan and the devil look like. Therefore, we are not allowed to draw him.'
What are emojis?
A small digital image or icon used to express an idea, emotion, etc., in electronic communication.
On his website, Akkari shares his story on how as a young man in America, he joined an rap group called 'Scums of the Earth' with whom he 'got into all kinds of Hollywood-like situations', before he began following Islam.
He later relocated his wife and children to Saudi Arabia where he teaches Arabic, delivers Friday prayers and holds lectures in some hospitals.
On the 'prayer' emoji, pressing both palms together, he said:
'This one - many people send it as a prayer and this is, again, used among Buddhists and Christians. 'In Islam, how do you make du'a [prayer]? You have your hands facing heaven like this... Maybe they do it in karate or something too.' People send it as a prayer and this is, again, used among Buddhists and Christians...'
The preacher also urges the audience to fact check what he was telling them on Google, saying it was 'halal' to do.
Finally, he introduced the 'devil hands' hand gesture used by heavy metal or rock concert attendees. He calls it 'the symbol of the devil'.
'These are the two horns of Satan. This is one of the hand symbols on WhatsApp. People don't know what it means. They just send it. You cannot send this one.'