A Fatwa Against Muslim Prayer Ringtones

Mufti Ali Gomaa, the Grand Mufti of Egypt and the country’s highest religious legal authority, denounced the use of the Muslim prayer call or verses from the Quran as cell phone ringtones, saying that it trivializes the word of God.

In response to a growing trend of using verses from the Quran or the prayer call for ringtones among Muslim cell phone owners, Mr. Gomaa said the practice “violates the sanctity of the divine words,” according to the Arabic and Muslim news site Al Arabiya, which quoted a copy of the fatwa, or religious edict.

“Picking up the phone is sure to interrupt the verse and this is disrespectful to the holy book,” the fatwa said. Instead, cell phone users might replace the ringtones with other religious songs. And prayer calls should not be used as ringtones, the fatwa said, because it might confuse people and make them believe it was actually time for prayer.

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