What is the ruling on erecting domes?
If it is erected upon the graves then it is haraam, not permissibile. But if it is erected upon a masjid for instance, for a specific purpose (like to allow light into the masjid) or upon a house without being wasteful and extravagant, then it is permissibile. So one should not say that it is impermissible in totality. Rather, if it is erected upon a grave then this is prohibited. For instance, today when they build these water stations, some of them have domes at the top. Is this permissible? Yes, the origin is that it is permissibile. But if it is known that the person’s intent was for something else, i.e. an innovation in the religion, then that is something else. And a quba (tent) was put up for the Messenger of Allah ﷺ from sheep skin. As the word in arabic, (قبّة) simply means something arched or curved. So that which is prohibited is erecting it upon graves. No matter if it is called a dome, a roof, a tower, or any type of structure that is built. That is what is prohibited based on the hadith of Jaabir in Sahih Muslim, that the Prophet ﷺ prohibited from building on top of graves. And likewise his ﷺ statement: “Don’t leave any raised graves except that you level them.” From the hadith of Ali رضي الله عنه.
And Allah knows best.
Answered by: Shaikh Abu Abdillah Muhammad Ba Jamaal (May Allah preserve him)
Translated by: Abu Yusuf Bilal ibn Howard Robinson