London Mosque Shacklewell Lane in the United Kingdom has become the first mosque in the world to accept Bitcoin and Ethereum cryptocurrency donation. This decision comes one month after an Islamic scholar declared that cryptocurrency is permissible under Sharia law.
Debate on Haram and Halal
There has been a significant debate between Islamic scholars on whether digital currencies like Bitcoin and Ethereum are haram (forbidden) or halal (good and lawful) and can be used as zakat, or donations to mosques.
Previously the Mufti of Egypt suggested that cryptocurrencies are haram since it is sometimes used for illegal activity. Now, the Shacklewell Lane mosque has declared Bitcoin as acceptable in the eyes of Allah (god). According to religious advisers at the Masjid Ramadan in Dalston, east London, the digital currency is halal if it is “transacted in a lawful manner”.
During the holy month of Ramadan, Muslims are expected to donate at least 2.5 percent of their wealth to charity. This is applicable to all Muslim, except for the poorest ones.
Use of Bitcoin and Ethereum by London Mosque Shacklewell Lane
London Mosque, Shacklewell Lane Mosque is all set to accept cryptocurrency donations using Bitcoin and Ethereum. The mosque has been receiving advice regarding cryptocurrencies from the Shoreditch startup Combo Innovation, a blockchain company focusing on Islamic finance.
The money obtained by donation or zakat as is known among the Muslim community is used to provide food and shelter to the needy and less privileged people of the society. It is also used to help families who are unable to pay for the funeral of their loved ones. Various repairs in the mosque are carried out with this money as well.
Clearing doubts on accepting cryptocurrency donations, religious adviser Zayd al Khair said that no money or currency is permissible or impermissible.
“If money is transacted in a lawful manner then it is halal. We do not always know the source of cash donations, but we take these in good faith too.”
Meanwhile, Shacklewell Lane Mosque in Hackney has announced that it will raise a minimum of £10,000 in cryptocurrency donations this Ramadan.[The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views and/or the official policy of the website. ]