According to the Qur'ān, animals which are not
slaughtered while taking Allah's name are forbidden:
Eat not on which Allah's name has not been pronounced.
In other words, taken Allah's name before slaughtering
an animal is a positive requirement. Therefore, the meat of animals which are
slaughtered while disregarding this practice bears the label of prohibition in
the Islamic Sharī`ah.
Yes, the Sunnah of the Prophet (sws) specifies a
particular way of slaughtering. It is called "Tadhkiyah" by the Qur'ān. In
this particular way, animals as goats and sheep are slaughtered through their
jugular veins and are not killed instantaneously by cutting the bead of the
neck. This method keeps intact the connection between the heart and the brain
so that every drop of blood is drained out of the slain animal. This purifies
the meat from the contamination of blood -- and achieving purity, we know, is
the objective of every directive of Islam.
The underlying reasons in taking Allah's name before
sacrificing an animal can be summed up as:
1. As a principle, Muslims have been directed to take
Allah's name before every task, routine or work they do. This actually is an
acknowledgement of the Almighty's favours and as such is a worthy expression
2. The sanctity a life possesses requires that even an
animal be sacrificed only with the permission of the Almighty who is the
Creator of life. It is only Allah who can give us this right, and, therefore,
as a reminder of this fact, it is necessary to take His name when the life of
an animal is taken.
3. This practice closes the gateway to polytheism. Those
who are aware of the history of various religions know that animal sacrifice
is deeply linked to idol worship. To please various deities, polytheists used
to sacrifice them. Taking Allah's name eliminates these unwarranted practices