Because chess is a “cause for hatred and enmity between players.”

This, from a country where floggings and beheadings are considered public “entertainment.”

Go figure…

Via Guardian:

Saudi Arabia’s grand mufti has ruled that chess is forbidden in Islam, saying it encourages gambling and is a waste of time.

Sheikh Abdulaziz al-Sheikh was answering a question on a television show in which he issues fatwas in response to viewers’ queries on everyday religious matters.

He said chess was “included under gambling” and was “a waste of time and money and a cause for hatred and enmity between players”.

….The region’s clerical establishment figures are no strangers to seemingly strange fatwas, or edicts. In the early 2000s, Saudi and other clerics issued a fatwa against the popular Pokémon franchise, and during football’s 2010 World Cup in South Africa, religious scholars in the United Arab Emirates said that using the widely reviled vuvuzela instrument was forbidden if the sound produced was above 100 decibels….

Related: Saudi beheadings soar in 2015 with one person beheaded every two days on average

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2 Comments | Leave a comment
  1. Pat_S says:

    There are two race tracks in Saudi Arabia. Guess it isn’t a waste of time watching horses run around a track for no reason (betting isn’t allowed–cough, cough). The Saudis are also fond of soccer. No possibility of enmity in that game even though there’s a penalty box.

  2. Alain41 says:

    What about playing chess with a computer?

    (Garry Kasparov was the first world champion to lose to a computer, Big Blue.)

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