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Islamic Perspective of Sex

Written by: by Abdulrahman Al-Sheha :: (View All Articles by: Abdulrahman Al-Sheha)
  • Forward
    Translator's Word
    Introduction
    Islam And Sex
    Islam And Sexual Stimulants
    Islam And Female Protection
    Islam And Marriage
    Conclusion

  • Forward to the Book

                Praise be to Allah, the Lord of the Universe, the Creator and the Sustainer. There is no deity worthy of worship except He. And may Allah's Peace and Blessings be upon Prophet Muhammad, His Companions, His Family and followers all.

                The issue of sex has occupied a prominent position in the human thinking and activity. There is so much preoccupation with sex, which has led to remarkable studies and research dealing with the nature of sexual behavior, its arousal, its use and abuse. Sex, as a human activity, has led to deviant behavior and abuse of its pure human need by the sex industry all over the world.

                Sex, as a need and behavior, has been fully dealt with in Islam. Islam is a comprehensive system of life that takes into account the spiritual, the social, the physical and all human needs. Furthermore, Islam has recognized these needs, organized them and has described proper ways of their fulfillment. One of these needs is the sexual. Islam viewed the sexual act as sacred, private and a source of human reproduction. Therefore, it is recognized within the family context only.

                Throughout the Islamic history, Muslim scholars and writers have tackled the issue of "sex in Islam". Within the same line of thinking comes this contribution by Br. Abdul Rahman Al-Sheha. In this book, the author provided the Islamic perspective on sex, purity and chastity. Furthermore, the author tackled the issue of "sexual stimulants" especially those beyond the sacred bond between the husband and wife. Therefore, Al-Sheha stated:" Islam bans all actions that lead to arouse the sex other than the permissible. Islam, out of precaution, bans all activities that lead to unlawful practices". The Glorious Quran says:
    Say to the believing men
    That they should lower
    Their gaze and guard their modesty: that will make
    For greater purity for them:
    And God is well acquainted
    With all that they do
    And say to believing women
    That they should lower
    Their gaze and guard
    Their modesty; that they
    Should not display their
    Beauty and ornaments except
    What (must ordinarily) appear
    Thereof; that they should
    Draw their veils over
    Their bosoms and not display
    Their beauty … ”
    (24:31-32)

                In order to prevent social ills, Islam has promoted the marriage institution. Islam permits Muslims to satisfy their sexual needs only through lawful marriage. i.e., the relationship between the husband and the wife in the traditional structure of the family. Accordingly, Islam emphasized the importance of building the family on solid foundations. A primary step in this process is the selection of the wife and the selection of the husband. A second step is a lawful meeting of a prospective bride, a marriage contract and the establishment of a happy family guided by the divine revelation.

                Brother Al-Sheha has also tackled other issues that assure the continuity of the family structure. Some of these steps deal with the issues of sexual fulfillment, happiness, harmony and family peace. Furthermore, he spelled out the rights of spouses upon each other. Finally, he addressed the issue of divorce in Islam, which is considered as the most "hated" lawful act in Islam. He explained its meaning and conditions.

                This book is very informative, well researched and scholarly written. I ask Allah-Glory Be to Him- to reward the author for his work. I think that this book is of great benefit for Muslims and non-Muslims in their quest to live by the divine teachings that promote chastity, modesty and happiness.

    Ahmad Ibn Saifuddin Turkistani, Ph.D.
    Director of the Institute of Islamic and Arabic sciences in America. 
    Washington, D.C
    25th of Rabl' al-Awwal, 1423 H.
    7th of June, 2002.


    Translator's Word

                Sex is a subject that has overwhelmed the minds of many people. Sex is an urge and human desire that should be fulfilled. Islam therefore, does not neglect this vital and important issue in the human life.

                The segregation of men and women in Islam, as well as the Prudah, veil of Muslim women, have led many non-Muslims to think derogatory about Islam.

                Islam considers the sex experience a unique, private, decent, and meaningful. Consequently, all related issues must be dealt with on the same principle.

                Islam sets limits enabling both spouses to live in peace and harmony; yet, each spouse is entitled for specific rights and demanded certain duties from each. This is to run the family affairs in the best manner.

                The author, in this book, attempts to present the viewpoint of Islam concerning sex and the explanations underlying specific man-woman relationship.

                I hope that this book would offer a general bird view for those who are interested to know the standpoint of Islam about this important social issue.

                For more details and further information, we advise to explore further readings on the subject.

                The translator, and his editor, exerted every possible human effort to present an authentic, accurate, and committed translation to the spirit of the original text as much as possible.

                Quranic verses were quoted from Harf automated Quran and its translation of the meanings. Only minor editing was done to the text of the translation as deemed fit and suitable. The reader must keep in mind that the "words" of Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) are matchless and cannot be exactly translated to mean what Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) connotes. Therefore, the human efforts could only go to a humble extent of translating what appears to him the close, immediate, and right meaning. The translator likes to make candid this point here as to indicate that the presented translation is only for the apparent meanings of the verses. The actual Arabic text of the verses is cited, the translation is placed right underneath it, and both are indented to illustrate that these are direct quotation from Quran.

                The translator did the same for the text of Hadith. The best effort was put in order to render the closest meaning to the actual text in Arabic.

                If there is any shortcoming, the translator requests our dear readers to overlook, or point it out to him in writing. He is grateful to all those who point out his shortcomings in order to avoid them in the future work, InshaAllah God willing.

                Muslims and non-Muslims alike must learn the viewpoint of Islam on sex and marriage.

                This book, despite its size, is full of wisdom, live examples, true meanings, and super instructions about sex and family life in Islam. It makes the mind thinks and the heart feel the true emotions at times. I heartily and cordially invite every Muslim and non-Muslim to read it and benefit himself/herself accordingly.

                I would like to express my sincere thanks and appreciation to the following people: Mr. AbdulRahman al-Sheeha, the author, for his good work and for authorizing me to translate it.

                For my dear wife, for being patient, helpful, cooperative and understanding while I was spending long hours of our precious time, working on the book and being away from her.

                All those who supported, prayed, directed, and helped, directly or indirectly, have my full appreciation and warmest thanks.

                Finally, I hope and pray to the Almighty Allah to accept this humble work for His Cause, blesse all those who worked on it and make it beneficial to all readers. I request the readers kindly and sincerely to pray for my soul and if they come across any mistake or oversight to forgive and pardon. Readers are kindly requested to contact me either through writing to my address below, or through the publisher's address, or they may contact me through the email address dabas47@yahoo.com.

    Mohammed Said Dabas, PhD.
    P.O. Box 122.
    Aroba St. Tayyar Agency.
    Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia 11361.


    Introduction

                All Praise is due to Allah. May Allah's Peace and Blessings be upon His slave servant Messenger Mohammed (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), and his rightly guided Companions, his family members and his progeny.

                Islam assigns man value over and above the rest of the creations. Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) created a pair of male and female. He knows best. Human reproduction is impossible without the existence of such a complementary pair. This co-existence complements each other.

                Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) created the male and the female in a perfect order that indicates His Greatness. Each one is granted a specific mission.

                Both, male and female have a specific role to play in this life. No one should defy his role. Therefore, Islam illustrated these various roles in order to leave no room for speculations.

                This booklet is an attempt to shed some light on various issues related to this important subject.

                There are vague ideas about sex in Islam in the minds of the non-Muslims who accuse Islam with so many unfair and groundless accusations. We are trying to present Islamic views about an important issue in the life of man on earth. If the viewpoint of Islam becomes clear in the minds of critics, it is hoped that they would understand the rational underlying Islamic standpoint.

                We pray Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) to enable us to achieve the objective we set out to do in this booklet for the benefit of our fellow men. If we succeed, that is by Allah's (subhanahu wa ta'ala) Grace. If we don't, it is our own shortcoming.

                We hope this booklet would be an interesting, beneficial and instructive.

    Abdur-Rahman A. Al-Sheha
    P.O. Box 59565,
    Riyadh 11535,
    Saudi Arabia


    Islam and Sex

                Islam considers sex as one of the essential human needs that must be properly satisfied. It is a necessity of the human being that. It require favorable consideration. In fact, Islam considers it one of the requirements of life that should be properly and lawfully satisfied. Moreover, Islam does not treat it as a distasteful, filthy, or heinous act of man. Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) states in the Glorious Quran Sura Al-Imran [The Family of Imran] (3:14):“ Fair in the eyes of men is the love of things they covet: women and sons; heaped-up hoards of gold and silver; horses branded [for blood and excellence]; and [wealth of] cattle and well-tilled land. Such are the possessions of this world's life; but in nearness to Allah is the best of the goals [to return to]”.

                In addition, Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which reads as follows:“ Three items of this world were made attracted [or likeable] to me: women, perfume [but] the [utmost] pleasure of my eyes [soul] is in prayer”[1].

                In fact, Islam forbids controlling and deprivation of the sexual behavior. This is, simply, because Islam is the natural religion commensurate to pure human innate. Islam does not, at any time, conflict with the requirements of the human's requirements or desires. Islam rather attempts to answer and fulfill all human needs and requirements. Islam does so by setting certain lawful limits and restrictions to ensure satisfying these needs in a right and lawful manner. Islam endeavors to keep the sex within the framework of human needs and elevates it above the savage and uncivilized way. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which reads as follows:“ People enter Jannah, Paradise mostly based on Taqwa of Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) [full respect and obedience of the Commands of Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) and His Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him)], and based on their good conduct. [While] most people enter the Hellfire because of the [ill use] of the mouth and private parts”[2].

                We shall attempt to present in this booklet, the method, which Islam instituted for Muslims to regulate the use of the sex. In fact, Islam sets the mode for the better advancement of man, if he follows the Islamic rules on the subject. Islam looks at the proper use of the sex as an act of worship, Ibadah. A Muslim would be rewarded when he practices this act, as he is rewarded when he does any other acts of prescribed types of worship. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) alluded to this concept when he said, which reads as follows:“ [A Muslim] would have an intercourse with his spouse ad would be rewarded for it. The Companions (may Allah be pleased with him) asked: Oh Messenger of Allah! A person would be rewarded while satisfying his sexual need? Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) replied: Yes. Isn't it that he would be punished had he practiced sex illegally? The same applies if a Muslim practiced a lawful intercourse with his spouse. As such, he would be rewarded”[3].

                The only acceptable way for sexual satisfaction in Islam is a lawful "marriage". In fact, Islam urges Muslims to seek marriage and encourages them to practice it. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which reads as follows:“ Whoever is financially capable of marriage but does not marry, he does not belong to Me [i.e., Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him)]” [4].

                " Islam regards marriage as a natural necessity in order to achieve tranquility and peace of mind for the Muslim. To the society, Islam regards marriage as a place to foster love, affection, closeness, and self-denial. Further, Islam regards marriage as a requirement to maintain the human race. Yet, Islam regards marriage as a mean for better moral values, preservation of honor and dignity, and preservation of the moral values of the human society. Thus, neglecting marriage or rejecting it is regarded as a denial of all the normal human behaviors and pure code of social ethics"[5].

                Hence, the objective of marriage in Islam is to achieve tranquility and peace of mind for both spouses. Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) states in Quran Sura Rum (30:21):“ And among His Signs is this, that He created for you mates from among yourselves, that ye may dwell in tranquility with them, and He has put love and mercy between your [hearts]: verily in that are Signs for those who reflect”.

                In fact, one of the objectives of marriage is to protect both spouses against indulgence in unlawful sexual practices that may lead to corruption and immoral acts [such as prostitution, fornication and adultery or else] in the society. Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) states in Quran Sura Baqarah (2:187):“ They are your garments and ye are their garments”.

                Undoubtedly, there are certain individuals who reject the call of Islam for purity and chastity. Such individuals advocate unliceneced sexual freedom. We believe that such people do not enjoy a normal and natural human satisfaction. As for Islam, it refuses to degrade Believers to the state of lower creatures, such as animals. Animals alone are left to practice sexual freedom as they wish and without any restrictions. Islam regards it a great sin for man to place his semen in a womb that is unlawful to him. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) states, whihc read as follows:“ There is no greater sin after the sin of associating partners with Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala), than a man placing his semen in a womb [private part of a woman] that is unlawful for him to place” [6].


    Islam and Purity

                Islam instructs Believers purity and chastity. Islam further bestows on Believers on dignity and honor. Islam guides and directs its followers in the right direction by which they would be, Allah willing, morally respectable and productive. Listen to the story of the young man who came to Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) asking him to permit him to practice adultery, as he can't live without it, after embracing Islam. The Companions (may Allah be pleased with him) loudly rejected the young man appeal and denied it wholeheartedly. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), however, called the young man closer to him and said, which reads as follows:“ Do you accept [to see] your mother committing adultery?" The young man replied negatively. Thus, Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said, which reads as follows:" As such, other people refuse to see their mothers [or any other female in their families] being indulgent in adultery. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) further asked the young man, which reads as follows:" Do you accept [to see] your sister committing adultery?" The young man replied negatively. Thus, Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said, which reads as follows:" As such, other people refuse to see their sisters committing adultery as well". Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) further asked, which reads as follows:" Do you accept [to see] your daughter committing adultery?" The young man replied negatively. Thus, Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said, which reads as follows:" As such, other people refuse to see their daughters committing adultery as well". Thus, we notice that Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) was not harsh at all on the young man, but he rather prayed for the well-being of this young man saying:" Oh Allah! Purify the heart of this young man, chastise his private parts, and enable him to lower his gaze". This young man is reported to have said:" By Allah! I had never sought unlawful relations again ever” [7].

                This is Islam. It is a religion that doesn't condone monasticism and total negligence of the worldly affairs. Islam doesn't to reject all worldly goods and pleasures completely. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him)is reported to have said, which reads as follows:“ By Allah! I am, Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), the most God respectful amongst you and most obedient to His Commands. However, I observe fast [for some days] and break it [for other days]. I [stand up during the night] offering prayers [for some time], and I also sleep [some times of the night]. I also marry [women]. Hence, whoever chooses any other way, other than my Sunnah, tradition, he doesn't belong to me” [8].

                Islam doesn't condone a blind and uncontrolled satisfaction of personal whims and caprices. Muhammad Qutub, the renowned contemporary Muslim scholar, says:" We can find no problem for 'sex' in Islam. Islam erects barriers before all human desires, including sex, which do not totally block them or deny them. Nevertheless, Islam rather, elevates and controls such human desires. Islam designs these barriers like that of the regulating devices on a river during flood seasons. As such, the regulating devices attempt to raise the level of water temporarily to a level that can't normally reach, then it let the water run at a higher level. Similarly, Islam controls the level of human desires by raising it to a higher plateau. Islam sets rules and regulations for the sex not to restrict or deny it completely, but rather to permit it within the scope that Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala)permits to practice such human desires. These are the limits set by Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) as He states in the Glorious Quran Sura Baqarah (2:229):“ These are the limits ordained by Allah; so do not transgress them if any do transgress the limits ordained by Allah, such persons wrong [themselves as well as others]”. Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) , in His vast wisdom knows that these are the "safe" and "secured" limits to drain such energies stored in man through human desires. By releasing such energies in an organized, controlled and safe manner, man can achieve a great level of success for himself and his society. Nevertheless, even Jahiliyah, state of ignorance, acknowledges the necessity to organize, regulate, and control all the human desires, except for "sex". Sex, among all human desires drives, is the crazy one. Imagine if such a crazy drive is left without control, regulation, and restrictions, what would happen to the society, its morals, honor, and individuals? Jahiliyah doesn't permit the drive and desire of ownership without regulations. If such a desire left unrestricted, we could see man wanting to possess and own whatever he likes, through any mean. However, man made laws classify such acts as a punishable crime of theft by law. The same is practiced insofar as the food, clothing and housing drives and desires. All these drives and desires are controlled by laws and not left for personal or emotional whims"[9].


    Islam and Marriage

                Islam commands its followers to marry as early as they are able. Muslims should not fear poverty nor should they apprehend increase of family members as result of marriage, and thus, because of that, they stay away from marriage. Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) states in Quran Sura Nur [The Light] (24:32):“ Marry those among you who are single, or the virtuous ones among your slaves, male or female: if they are in poverty, Allah will give them means out of His Grace: for Allah encompasseth all, and He knoweth all things”.

                Moreover, Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which reads as follows:“ Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) takes it upon Himself to help three types of people. These are: A warrior, who is striving in the cause of Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala). A contracted slave, who wants to pay off the value set for his freedom of slavery, and, a person, who seeks marriage to chastise himself” [10].

                If a male Muslim can't afford to marry because of poverty, he is commanded to chastise himself. Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) states in Quran Sura Nur [The Light] (24:33):“ Let those who find not the wherewithal for marriage keep themselves chaste, until Allah gives them means out of His Grace”.

                Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) gives advice that makes it easier to a certain extent for a person, who is unable to marry for dearth of marriage expenses. This advice harnesses his desire to marry and enables him to control his sexual desires. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which reads as follows:“ Oh young men! Whoever is capable [financially and otherwise] to [afford the expenses] of marriage, let him do so. [Marriage] helps one control his eyesight and chastise his private parts. But, he who can't afford the marriage expenses, let him observe fast as it would [act] as a protector for him” [11].

                The Glorious Quran further illustrated the best example of subduing the sexual drive in the story of Prophet Yousuf (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) [Joseph]. Prophet's Yousuf (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) story is set as one of the best examples for the Muslim youth. Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) states in Quran Sura Yousuf (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) (12:23-24):“ But she in whose house he was, sought to seduce him from his [true] self: she fastened the doors, and said: Now come, thou [dear one]! he said: Allah forbid! Truly [thy husband] is my lord! He made my sojourn agreeable! Truly to no good come those who do wrong! And [with passion] did she desire him, and he would have rejected her, but that he saw the evidence of his Lord: thus [did We order] that We might turn away from him [all] evil and shameful deeds: for he was one of Our servants, sincere and purified”.

                Yousuf (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) overlooked the adverse results stemming from his denial to the request of the prestigious lady. The result of rejecting her request for evil acts was imprisonment. Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) states in Quran Sura Yousuf (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) (12:32-34):“ She said: There before you is the man about whom ye did blame me! I did seek to seduce him from his [true] self but he did firmly save himself guiltless! And now, if he doth not my bidding, he shall certainly be cast into prison and [what is more] be of the company of the vilest! He said: O my Lord! The prison is more to my liking than that to which they invite me: unless Thou turn away their snare from me, I should [in my youthful folly] feel inclined towards them and join the ranks of the ignorant. So his Lord hearkened to him [in his prayer], and turned away from him their snare: verily He heareth and knoweth [all things]”.

    [1] Amad and Nasai report this Hadith.
    [2] Trimithi reported this Hadith.
    [3] Ahmad reported this Hadith.
    [4] Al-Baihaqi reported this Hadith.
    [5] Al-Kholi, al-Bahi, 'Woman Between Home and Society'.
    [6] Ahmad reported this Hadith.
    [7] Tabarani reported this Hadith.
    [8] Bukhari and Muslim reported this Hadith.
    [9] The Islamic Education Curriculum, Dar-al-Shuruq, Vol.2, P.218-9.
    [10] Tirmithi reported this Hadith.
    [11] Bukhari and Muslim reported this Hadith.


    Islam and Sexual Stimulants

                Islam bans all actions that lead to arouse the sex other than the permissible. Islam, out of precautious, bans all activities that lead to unlawful practices. It is a bare fact that when a person is sexually aroused and overwhelmed with sexual emotions he would be tempted to involve even in prevented courses. Such a person will not hesitate to resort to any means to gratify his sexual passions. Such a sexually charged and aroused person may tend to discharge such drive unlawfully. The sexual prevention may be attained with mutual consent of the two parties involved, or by force, or rape. Both, adults and minors may participate in such unlawful activities. Some individuals may tend to discharge it by another unlawful mean that is homosexual, lesbian, or masturbation. All the above-cited forms are unlawful in Islam.


    Means to Restrict Stimulants

                Islam commands to apply the following methodology in order to restrict sexual intercourse:

    • Islam commands parents to separate male and female children, who reach the age of puberty and maturity as they sleep. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which read as follows:“ Command your children to [begin] offering prayers [on a regular basis] at age seven. [Then] discipline them if they don't maintain it [on a regular basis] when they become ten years of age. [Moreover] separate [male children from females] when they sleep at that age” [12].

                  Islam ordains, through Allah's Messenger's command and instruction (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), to avoid any contact between males and females while sleeping together alone in the same bed or room. Such contact may arouse the potential sexual urges.

       
    • Islam ordains that Muslim women be segregated from stranger males. This is ordained, Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) knows best, in order to maintain the honor and preserve the dignity of both and in order to avoid any sexual intimacy between both. Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) states in Quran Sura Ahzab [The Confederates] (33:59):“ Oh Prophet! Tell thy wives and daughters, and the believing women, that they should cast their outer garments over their persons [when abroad]: that is most convenient, that they should be known [as such] and not molested. And Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful”.

                  Islam, however, gave a permission to the elder, unmarriageable ladies, who are neither sexually desirous nor sexually attractive, to wear normal modest attire such as long garments and basic head cover [other than covering the face] and do not wear any facial makeup, to appear as such before stranger males. Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) states in Quran Sura Nur [The Light] (24:60):“ Such elderly women as are past the prospect of marriage, there is no blame on them if they lay aside their [outer] garments, provided they make not a wanton display of their beauty: but it is best for them to be modest: and Allah is One Who sees and knows all things”.

       
    • Islam commands to protect and lower the eyesight against all unlawful scenes. Eyesight may generate a sexual desire in the eyes of the beholder. As such, this may develop later on to a wanting, eager and meditating evil desire, and eventually executing these desires, unlawfully. Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) states in Quran Sura Nur [The Light] (24:30-31):“ Say to the Believing men that they should lower their gaze and guard their modesty: that will make for greater purity for them: and Allah is well acquainted with all that they do. And say to the believing women that they should lower their gaze and guard their modesty; that they should not display their beauty and ornaments except what [must ordinarily] appear thereof…”.

                  Furthermore, Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which read as follows:“ The look [of the eyesight] is a poisonous arrow of Iblis [Satan]” [13].

                  Imam Ibn-ul-Qayyim is reported to have commented on this issue as follows: "While eyesight or eye contact is the beginning of the sexual stimulants, Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) began with it first, prior to the protection and chastising of the private parts. In fact, all sexual drives begin with an eye contact. Similarly, the greatest fire begins with the smallest fire spark. A person begins with an unlawful look, then this develops into a thought in the mind and heart, then this develops into a step or an action of movement towards the sexual partner, and finally this would end up in a sin of an unlawful sexual intercourse. Therefore, it is wisely said: 'whoever preserves the following four items, would surely preserve his faith. These are as follows:
      1. Eyesight or looks and gaze.
      2. [Evil] thoughts that cross the mind and heart.
      3. [Sexually seductive] words that are uttered [with evil and unlawful intention] or flirting with women or men.
      4. Steps [that lead to unlawful sexual practices] [14].


                  Furthermore, as it is potentially possible to unlawfully glance at something, Muslims are commanded not to prolong such unlawful looks. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said to Ali (may Allah be pleased with him) which read as follows:“ Oh Ali [Listen]! Don't continue with looking [at unlawful items], as the first look is [permitted] for you, while the second is not” [15].

                  Islam urged and encouraged its followers and Believers to seek the Pleasure of Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) by protecting their looks. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which read as follows:“ Whoever lowers his gaze by not looking at the charms of a [stranger] woman, Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) would substitute him for this with a faith, which he would feel its sweetness in his heart” [16].

       

    • Islam ordains both adult and mature males and females to seek permission prior entering any private residence. Such permission, Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) knows best, is ordained in order to avoid looks at any unlawful scene. Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) states in Quran Sura Nur [The Light] (24:58):“ Oh ye who believe! Let those whom your right hands possess, and the [children] among you who have not come of age ask your permission [before they come to your presence], on three occasions, before morning prayer; the while you take off your clothes for the noonday heat; and after the late-night prayer: these are your three times of undress: outside these times it is not wrong for you or for them to move about attending to each other: thus does Allah make clear the Signs to you: for Allah is full of knowledge and wisdom”.

                  In addition, Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) states in Quran Sura Nur (24:59):“ But when the children among you come of age, let them [also] ask for permission, as do those senior to them [in age]: thus does Allah make clear His Signs to you: for Allah is full of knowledge and wisdom”.

       
    • Islam bans impersonation for both sexes; males and females. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him)is reported to have said, which read as follows:“ May Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) curse impersonating men [as females], and may Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) curse impersonating females [as males]”.

       
    • Islam bans listening to sexually oriented songs and the like. Naturally, such acts would mentally prepare and lead normal people to commit unlawful banned sexual practices. In fact, Muslim scholars of early generations described sexually motivating songs and singings: "It is the essential mean for committing adultery".

       
    • Islam bans sitting alone, for an extensive period, with young men, i.e., minor males, especially the attractive looking ones among them. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which read as follows:“ The fornication of the eye is to look [at unlawful items or actions]. The fornication of the tongue is to speak [using unlawful words, phrases, terminology, descriptions and stories]. The fornication of the hand is to commit [unlawful acts or actions]. The fornication of the foot is to walk [even steps] to an unlawful place or activity. The fornication of the ear is to listen [to unlawful items such as songs, stories, words, secrets and the like]. Yet, the human soul wishes for all of that or promises to obtain. However, the private parts would either confirm [any of these actions and activities] or falsify them”.

       
    • Islam bans male Muslims to be alone with any female, other than immediate relatives that are not permissible for marriage, or a spouse. Such privacy may lead to satanic seduction. Consequently, this may lead to adulterous acts or fornication. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which read as follows:“ Any man, who sits in a privacy with a female, [whom he can marry], would be accompanied by Satan as the third companion to the two” [17].

                  In fact, Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) explained the best method to be with a female saying, which read as follows:“ A man must not be alone with a woman, unless one of her male (Mahram) immediate relatives [i.e., a husband, a father, a son, a brother, a nephew, a grandson] is present with them” [18].

       
    • Islam further bans any mingled activities. This is because such activities and meeting may lead to suspicious relationships between non-related males and females. In fact, Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala)states in Quran Sura Ahzab [The Confederates] (33:53):“ And when ye ask [his one of his wives] for anything ye want ask them from behind a barrier [partition]: that makes for greater purity for your hearts and for theirs”.

                  Professor Muhammad Qutub in his book, 'Man between Materialism and Islam', comments as follows:" Innocent co-ed was a mammoth myth came from the West [i.e., Europe and the North Hemisphere]. The West, at the beginning of its dissolvence, wanted to treat its' sexual pressure. The Western social scientists and psychologists exaggerated the immense value of co-ed. Later, they denied it all and never mentioned it after that. They truly discovered the real picture and results of co-ed. As such, physiatrists, psychologists, and neurologists withdrew completely from their previous opinion regarding co-ed. Those even denied slow dance [innocent] parties, co-ed tea parties, and co-ed picnics under the supervision of parents and teachers. Today, the same scholars claim that any co-ed meeting would stir the sex and not the opposite. The personal feelings may be suppressed, or they are forced to be suppressed because of social circumstances. At other times, such personal feelings would be suppressed due to shyness before other people. Consequently, suppression of personal feelings would instigate psychological or mental anxiety and apprehension. Such anxiety occurs because of the social co-ed meetings. At such point, one of two things may take place. A young male may seek a different place where he can freely practice his personal feelings and emotions without any barriers or controls. Or else, the young male would remain under severe anxiety that may lead to certain disorders. Therefore, we can easily wonder: "What an innocent meeting these co-ed meetings are!"

       
    • Islam bans a wife to describe the physical details of another woman. This is so to prevent the slightest attraction of that married man to the other woman. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him)is reported to have said, which read as follows:“ A woman must not see another woman [exposed in a private females meeting], then describes the details of that woman to her husband” [19].

       
    • Islam bans women to get out of their homes wearing full make up and perfume. Such a practice would attract the attention of males to them. As such, the woman may be trapped into unlawful relationships with males who are awaiting such opportunities.

                  Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) states in Quran Sura Ahzab [The Confederates] (33:33):“ And stay quietly in your houses, and make not a dazzling display, like that of the former Times of Ignorance”.

                  In fact, Islam bans a female to speak softly and in an attractive tone with a male who is not related to her. This practice is a mean of protection for the female against males who are desirous for adultery and fornication. A female Muslim must speak with a male only as necessary. Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) states in Quran Sura Ahzab [The Confederates] (33:33):“ Oh Consorts of the Prophet! Ye are not like any of the [other] women: if ye do fear [Allah], be not too complaisant of speech, lest one in whose heart is a disease should be moved with desire: but speak ye a speech [that is] just”.

       
    • Islam further bans nudity and displaying women's physical attractions. Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) states in Quran Sura Aaraaf [The Heights] (6:26):“ Oh ye Children of Adam! We have bestowed raiment upon you to cover your shame, as well as to be an adornment to you. However, the raiment of righteousness, that is the best. Such are among the Signs of Allah, that they may receive admonition!”.

       
    • Islam instructs women allowed to appear before lawful relatives to do so with casual clothes and ornamentations. Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) states in Quran Sura Nur [The Light] (24:31):“ …and not display their beauty except to their husbands, their fathers, their husbands' fathers, their sons, their husbands' sons, their brothers or their brothers' sons, or their sisters' sons, or their women, or the slaves whom their right hands possess, or male servants free of physical needs, or small children who have no sense of the shame of sex; and that they should not strike their feet in order to draw attention to their hidden ornaments. And, Oh ye Believers! Turn ye all together towards Allah, that ye may attain Bliss”.

       
    • Islam bans a woman to travel alone. A woman must travel with an immediate relative described earlier as Mahram. This escort or companion must be one of the following relatives: a husband, a father, a brother, or a relative whom she is not allowed to marry on a permanent basis. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which read as follows:“ A woman must not travel without a Mahram. No male must enter the privacy of a woman without an immediate Mahram is available with that woman. A man raised a question to Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) saying: Oh Messenger of Allah! My wife set out to perform pilgrimage while I have registered for such and such Ghazwah [Fighting Troops, what should I do?]. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) instructed the man as follows: Go and join your wife for pilgrimage” [20].

    [12] Ahmad and Abu Dawoud reported this Hadith.
    [13] Ahmad reported this Hadith.
    [14] Ibn-ul-Qayyim, 'al-Jawab-ul-Kafi liman Saala 'an al-Jawabi-sh-shafi' [The Sufficient Answer for the Person Who Asks for the Healing Medicine], P.172.
    [15] Ahmad, Abu Daoud and Tirmithi reported this Hadith.
    [16] Tabarani and Hakim reported this Hadith.
    [17] Tirmithi reported this Hadith.
    [18] Bukhari and Muslim reported this Hadith.
    [19] Ahmad reported this Hadith.
    [20] Bukhari and Muslim reported this Hadith.


    Islam and Female Protection

                The real intent of Islam underlying all the rulings, restrictions, procedures, and commands for women is their own protection. Islam aims at preserving their honor, and upholding their dignity. Travel usually requires a lot of efforts and other expenses. Women, by nature are weak [in comparison with men]. Women are bound to have menses, after birth confinement, child nursing, and pregnancy. Women are, also, easily vulnerable to deception, as they usually follow their emotions, which may be, at times, misleading. Women are commonly passionate and easily influenced by the environment. A woman needs some kind of protection against evil people while traveling. Generally, a woman may not be able to defend herself physically against others due to her very nature. She also needs someone to care for her properly and take care of her needs. Islam requires a Mahram, immediate relative of a woman to take care of all her needs and provide her the best security and safety he could. Islam requires this from a Mahram, in order to suffice women any need for a stranger.


    Islam and personal desires

     

    • Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) commands a man, who glances a woman, which stimulates his sexual instinct to return home to his family [if he is a married man] and approach his wife. This should facilitate him to satisfy his sexual desires in a lawful and proper manner. By the same token, he would be deterred from the trap of satanic way of seduction. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which read as follows:“ A woman approaches in a shape of Satan and walks away in the same shape. Therefore, if a [married man] notices [physically] something of a woman that arouses him [sexually], let such a man go back to his home and approach his wife. Doing so would cool him if” [21].

       
    • Islam commands both spouses to satisfy their personal [sexual] desire with each other when either spouse is interested to do so. Islam bans a woman to refuse her husband's request to satisfy his needs. If a woman denies her husband's request, he may be led to evil thoughts searching for unlawful sources of satisfaction, or else, he would develop mental pressure. Both such situations are detrimental, both physically and mentally. Islam, therefore, is insistent on this issue. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which read as follows:“ If a man calls his wife to sleep with him and she does not respond, causing him to be angry with her, angels will [continue] to curse her until the morning” [22].

       
    • Islam applies the same towards the husband. A husband must satisfy his wife's sexual desire in order to protect her against evil thoughts and actions as well. Ibn Hazm, a renowned Muslim scholar comments as follows: "A husband must have an intercourse with his wife once a month, in the least possible ways, while he is capable of doing so. Otherwise, such a person is disobeying Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala). The evidence to this from Quran is from Sura Baqarah (2:222):“ But when they have purified themselves, ye may approach them in any manner, time, or place ordained for you by Allah. For Allah loves those who turn to Him constantly and He loves those who keep themselves pure and clean”.

       
    • Islam entitles a wife to seek a court judgment against her husband if he neglects to satisfy her sexual needs as well. This just and safe way maintains the peace, equality, and satisfaction in the family and society.

       
    • Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) promised individuals, who attempt to spread chaos and evil activities in the Islamic community to pour on them the severest penalty. Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) states in Quran Sura al-Nur (24:19):“ Those who love [to see] scandal published broadcast among the Believers, will have a grievous Penalty in this life and in the Hereafter: Allah knows, and ye know not”.

       

    If this is the case of the scandalous individuals, what about the doers and supporters of such unlawful activities? Surely, it is much more disastrous.

    [21] Muslim reported this Hadith.
    [22] Abu Daoud and Nasai reported this Hadith.


    Islam and Marriage

                Islam permits Muslims to satisfy their sexual needs only through lawful marriage. Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) ordained man to be different than all other irrational creatures. Sayyid Sabeq, in his book, 'Fiqhu-Sunnah', comments as follows:" Islam controls and organizes the sexual behavior and needs. A perfect system is laid down by Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) to maintain and preserve the honor, dignity, and respect of man. Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) ordained that a mutual acceptance and agreement must be secured for a marriage relationship between a man and a woman. The man and the woman who are to establish a marriage contract and relationship must perform a "Request" and an "Acceptance". Both spouses to be must have witnesses to testify that marriage contract. Thus, a proper and safe way for this relationship is established. Moreover, the progeny, which is a byproduct of this relationship is also protected, well preserved, and properly cared for. In addition, the woman in Islam is also protected by such contract against unlawful and harmful relationships. Islam established the basis of a nucleus family that is nourished by the mother, and supported by the father. Thus, the products of this marriage are lawful relationship, which would grow up in a fine and suitable environment. This is the system that Islam accepts and maintains for its Believers and as such, it ruins all other unlawful and meaningless relationships"[23].


    Wife Selection in Islam

                Islam established its own theory for a process of spouse. The issue of marriage in Islam is not an issue of mere sexual satisfaction. Islam considers marriage an institution to establish a family. Therefore, Islam urges marriage seekers to select a long lasting relationship, establish a beloved, and caring family, which should serve the society. All these conditions would not be fulfilled unless there is a pious and righteous wife, who is mindful of the commands of Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) and careful about all duties entrusted to her. However, other issues of social life must not be neglected. Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) states in Quran Sura al-Nur (24:32):“ Marry those among you who are single, or the virtuous ones among your slaves, male or female: if they are in poverty, Allah will give them means out of His Grace: for Allah encompasseth all, and He knoweth all things”.

                Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) explained the issues that urge a Muslim to marry. He also, emphasized the everlasting factor for marriage, which is righteousness. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which read as follows:“ A woman would be sought for marriage for the following four items: for her wealth, beauty, [honorable] lineage, or for her [strong commitment to] Islam. [When you seek a woman to marry], may Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) bless your hands; seek the one with a strong commitment to faith”[24].

                Islam seeks to prepare the best men as husbands. Islam cares a lot for the woman and urges Muslims to be the best for their families, and wives in particular. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which read as follows:“ The most perfect Believers in terms of faith are those, who possess the best character and manners. The best among you are those who are best to their women. I, as Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), am the best among you to my family” [25].

                In addition, Islam idealizes a wife as the best woman. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) describes such a woman as follows, which read as follows:“ [She is that woman] who pleases [her husband] when he looks at her, obeys him when he commands [instructs or requests], fulfills his demands and preserves his wealth” [26].

                Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is also reported to have said concerning the same subject, which read as follows:“ The best gain a Muslim acquires after [commitment to] Islam is a beautiful wife who pleases him when he looks at her, obeys his commands, protects his privacy when he is absent, and protects his wealth” [27].


    Lawful sight of a prospective bride

                Islam aims at long lasting marital relationship. If both, strong commitment to Islam and sound moral background are ensured in a marriage, good looks leads to a successful marital relationship. A bridegroom, however, and his bride, both must enter into this relationship with full conviction, mutual acceptance, and preliminary satisfaction of the essential marriage requirements.

                Therefore, Islam permits both spouses to look at each other. A man came to Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) and informed him that he sought marriage from a specific woman of Ansars. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which read as follows:“ Did you look at her? The man answered negatively. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said: Look at her. There is something [funny] about the eyes of Ansari women [i.e., some blemishing effect]” [28].

                This is, of course, a wise advice so as the bridegroom would not regret later if had seen the bride before marriage. He may think, 'I would had changed my mind had I known her to be like that!'

                Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) explained the wisdom of the lawful sight of the bridegroom to the bride, prior to concluding a marriage contract. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said to a man who came and told him about his engagement of a certain woman. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which read as follows:“ Did you look at her? The man replied negatively. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) commanded him: 'Go and see her. It is hoped that you both would become lovable to each other” [29].

                Love and affection, between a husband and wife, are normal feelings according to Islam. Therefore, so long as this love is pure, innocent, and lawful, Islam condones it and nourishes it by lawful means. A man came and asked Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) which read as follows:“ Oh Messenger of Allah! I have an orphan girl in my custody. Two men sought her for marriage. One is rich and the other is poor. We like the rich and she likes the poor. [to whom should we offer her in marriage?]. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: Nothing is known to be better for people who love one another than marriage” [30].


    Additional aspects on marriage preference

     

    • Islam urges Muslims to intercede between two loving and righteous spouses, if their marriage is on the verge of breaking. For example, a man called Mogheith was noticed following his wife Burairah, after she obtained divorce from him. The ex husband cried and begged his divorcee to come back to him [as a loving wife]. Upon noticing this Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said to Ibn Abbas (may Allah be pleased with him), which read as follows:“ Isn't it amazing how much Mogheith loves Burairah and how much she hates him? Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him)turned to Burairah and requested her: I wish you return to him [as a wife]! urairah asked: Oh Messenger of Allah! Do you command me to return to him? Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him)said: No, I Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) just interceding for him. She said: I have no need for him” [31].

       
    • A Muslim guardian of a woman may, based on the acceptance and approval of the woman, propose her for marriage to someone who is well acquainted with his character and qualities. A guardian is usually keen to serve the interest of the woman he is entrusted him for guardianship. Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) states in Quran Sura al-Qasas (28:22-27):“ And when he arrived at the watering (place) in Madyan, he found there a group of men watering (their flocks), and besides them he found two women who were keeping back (their flocks). He said: What is the matter with you? They said: We cannot water (our flocks) until the shepherds take back (their flocks): and our father is a very old man. Therefore, he watered (their flocks) for them; then he turned back to the shade, and said: O my Lord! Truly am I in (desperate) need of any good that Thou dost send me! Afterwards one of the (damsels) came (back) to him, walking bashfully. She said: My father invites thee that he may reward thee for having watered (our flocks) for us. So when he came to him and narrated the story, he said: Fear thou not: (well) hast thou escaped from unjust people. He said: I intended to wed one of these my daughters to thee, on condition that thou serve me for eight years; but if thou complete ten years, it will be (grace) from thee. But I intend not to place thee under a difficulty: thou wilt find me, indeed, if Allah wills, one of the righteous. He said: Be that (the agreement) between me and thee: whichever of the two terms I fulfill, let there be no ill-will to me. Be Allah a witness to what we say”.

     


    Marriage contract, dowry and wedding

     

    • Islam requires specific conditions in a marriage. The first requirement is the acceptance and approval of both parties. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which read as follows:“ A widow or divorcee [woman] must not be [forced to] married unless she approves it. The virgin, also, must not be [forced to] marrying unless she is sought permission. The Companions asked: How could we seek her permission? He (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) replied: If she observed silence it means she gave her permission”.

       
    • If a woman is forced to marry without her consent, she has the right to break that marriage. This is based on the action of Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) when a woman called Khansa bint Jutham was forced to marry, without her consent. She came to Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) and informed him that her father offered her in marriage without her consent. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) declared that marriage null and void. Of course, this is done with the intent to ensure the protection of the Muslim family. In addition, this would help eliminate the vices in the society, as it would protect against any marriage betrayals resulting from the dislike of spouses to one another.

       
    • The role of a legal guardian is also another requirement of a valid marriage. This is based on the Hadith reported of Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) saying, which read as follows:“ A marriage would not be valid unless a [bride] guardian and two just witness are [all] present” [32]. Again, all this is done in order to preserve the relationships among the family members. A [sound and matured] guardian is also keen and more careful to choose the best for his guarded woman. Thus, he would exert every possible effort to select the most suitable marriage partner for her.

       
    • If there is no guardian, or if the guardian forbids his guarded woman to marry, despite the mutual agreement of male and female, the guardianship would automatically transfer to the judge or authorities. This is based on the Hadith reported of Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) which read as follows:“ The governor [judge] is the guardian for [a woman or minor] who has no [relative] guardian”.

       
    • A dowry is another requirement for the validity of marriage. A dowry must be paid to the bride. Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) states in Quran Sura al-Nisa [The Women] (4:3):“ And give the women [on marriage] their dower as a free gift; but if they, of their own good pleasure, remit any part of it to you, take it and enjoy it with right good cheer”.

       
    • Muslims must not be extravagant in dowries. This is based on the Hadith reported of Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) saying, which read as follows:“ The signs of a good fortune of a woman are: the ease of engagement [when marriage is sought], the ease of dowry, and the ease of relationship with her relatives” [33]. Omar, the second Caliph (may Allah be pleased with him) said: " Don't exaggerate when you request for a dowry for your brides. If there were an honor to be given in this world, or a piety in the Sight of Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala), Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him)would have earned the best of these. I don't know of any marriage, which Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) performed, either for his wives, or for his daughters, that exceeded twelve Uqiyah[34]" [35].

       
    • In addition, all other lawful conditions that both parties agree upon for the marriage contract must be executed after marriage. This is based on the Hadith reported of Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) saying, which read as follows:“ The most entitled contracts' provisions to fulfill are that of the marriage contract” [36].

       
    • Islam ordains a wedding party to celebrate their happiness for the occasion. Such a party should invite the relatives and friends of the bride and the bridegroom in order to publicize and announce the marriage in the community. This is based on the Hadith reported of Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) saying when he noticed that he had married, which read as follows:“ May Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) bless you. Throw a [wedding] party, even if you slaughter [and prepare] one [head of] a female sheep” [37].

       
    • Islam does not condone lavishness on the wedding party. Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) states in Quran Sura Isra [The Night Journey] (17:27):“ Verily spendthrifts are brothers of the Evil Ones; and the Evil One is to his Lord [Himself] Ungrateful”.

       
    • Islam exhorts the invitees for a wedding party to attend it, unless he has a valid excuse. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which read as follows:“ [Attempt to] liberate the prisoner, honor the call of an inviter, and visit an ill person” [38].

       
    • Islam urges the people who attend the wedding meal party to pray for the inviters, as he (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) instructed, which read as follows:“ Oh Allah! Forgive them, be Merciful to them, and bless what You have provided them” [39]. Also, to pray for them, which read as follows:“ May Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) bless her for you, may Allah bless you, and may Allah gather both of you on good things” [40].

       
    • Islam permits the use of the flat drum only at this occasion, as well as morally encouraging songs and chanting. This is based on the Hadith reported of Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him)saying to our beloved mother of Believers Aeshah (may Allah be pleased with him) who attended a wedding of an Ansari woman:“ Did you have any fun [singing and playing the flat drum]? Ansar people liked to listen to that” [41].

     


    The etiquette at the night of wedding

     

    • At the first meeting after wedding night, the bridegroom is advised to present himself in a pleasant manner, with sweet conversations, and in a very kind way to the bride. This is the first meeting of a new life style. Doing so would bring the two spouses closer together. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) did the same on the night of marriage to Aeshah (may Allah be pleased with him). He sat next to her, requested a jug of milk, and drank of it, and then he passed it to her. She also drank of the same glass. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) told her to pass the jug to her peers, as reported by Imam Ahmad.

       
    • It is also an act of Sunnah to hold the hair bangs of the bride and offer a Sunnah supplication, as reported in Hadith, which read as follows:“ Oh Allah! I seek of you [to grant me] the best of this woman and the best of her characteristics. Oh Allah! I seek refuge with you to protect me against all the evils of this woman and her evil characteristics” [42].

     


    Joking and playing between spouses

                Islam regards the fulfillment of sexual instinct as natural, but with regulated and specific conditions. This sexual fulfillment is described in Quran Sura Rum (30:21), as follows:“ And among His Signs is this, that He created for you mates from among yourselves, that ye may dwell in tranquility with them, and He has put love and mercy between your [hearts]: verily in that are Signs for those who reflect”.

                Islam therefore encouraged the establishment of such relationship and stressed to promote it. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which reads as follows:“ Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) asked his Companion Jaber (may Allah be pleased with him): Did you marry? Jaber (may Allah be pleased with him) replied affirmatively. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him)asked: Is she a virgin or a divorcee or widow? Jaber (may Allah be pleased with him)stated that she was a widow. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) commented: Why didn't you get a virgin, as you would have fun with each other!”.

                Islam, in fact, places a great value for the fun between the two spouses. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which reads as follows:“ All the fun that man has is vain except for three items: shooting arrows, disciplining [training] a gorse and having fun with his wife. These three items are but truthful [or lawful] means of fun” [43].

                In fact, Islam encourages best grooming for both spouses. Decent grooming promotes love and increases affection between spouses. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which reads as follows:“ Truly, Allah is Beautiful and He likes beauty” [44].

                Ibn Omar (may Allah be pleased with him) also reported that Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have done as Ibn Omar (may Allah be pleased with him) does, which reads as follows:“ Ibn Omar (may Allah be pleased with him) used two types of perfume and said: this is the way that Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) perfumed himself” [45].

                Ibn Abbas (may Allah be pleased with him) is reported to have said, which reads as follows:“ I try to look best to my wife, as I like her to look best to me. I also do not like to demand all my rights onto her, as I, as Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) , am afraid she would also demand her full right onto me [in such a case I wouldn't be able to fulfill it for her]. Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) states in Quran Sura al-Baqarah (2:228): And women shall have rights similar to the rights against them, according to what is equitable; but men have a degree [of advantage] over them. And Allah is Exalted in Power, Wise”.


    Limits of fun between spouses Bed fun

     

    • Both spouses are permitted to see each other in the nude. Both are also entitled to enjoy one another to the utmost. Mu'awiyah (may Allah be pleased with him) asked Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), which reads as follows:“ Oh Messenger of Allah! To what extent should we protect [cover] our private parts? Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have replied: Protect [cover] your private parts [fully] except from your spouse or those whom your right hand possess” [46].

       
    • Both spouses are entitled to enjoy each other fully in terms of sexual intercourse in any position, if the husband approaches his wife in the proper place, i.e., where a baby is delivered. Tirmithi reported that Omar (may Allah be pleased with him) came to Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) and declared, which reads as follows:“ Oh Messenger of Allah! I've destroyed myself! Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) asked: What cause you to say this? Omar (may Allah be pleased with him) replied: I've changed the method of my intercourse tonight. [i.e., he approached his wife from the back, but in the proper place]. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) did not comment on the issue [as he doesn't have any jurisdiction to say]. Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) revealed to Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) , on the spot, the following verse in Sura al-Baqarah (2:223): Your wives are as a tilth unto you: so approach your tilth when or how you will; but do some good act for your souls beforehand; and fear Allah, and know that ye are to meet Him [in the Hereafter], and give [these] good tidings to those who believe”

                  Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, at this point, which reads as follows:“ You may approach her from the front, or from the back, provided that you avoid the anis and while the wife is in menses” [47].

                  This Hadith, however, means that a husband must avoid doing anything with his wife while she is in menstruation period. Aeshah (may Allah be pleased with hher) reported that:“ While I was in menstruation, I would drink from a cup, then Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) would take the cup, place his lips in the same place of mine on the cup, and drink. I would also take a piece of meat on the bone; bite of it, then put it down. Then, Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) would take the same piece and eat from it, placing his lips in the same place of mine” [48].

                  Similarly, a husband and wife may enjoy each other, while in menstruation, if they avoid the actual intercourse. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which reads as follows:“ You may do anything [with each other as a husband and wife, while in menstruation] except of actual intercourse” [49].

                  Jaber (may Allah be pleased with him) is reported to have said, which reads as follows:“ Jews used to believe that if a husband approaches his wife from the back, in the proper place, the born child would be cross-eyed. Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) revealed, the following verse in Sura al-Baqarah (2:223): Your wives are as a tilth unto you: so approach your tilth when or how you will; but do some good act for your souls beforehand; and fear Allah, and know that ye are to meet Him [in the Hereafter], and give [these] good tidings to those who believe” [50].

       
    • It is Sunnah to utter the name of Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) before approaching one's wife sexually. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which reads as follows:“ If a husband, before he approaches his wife sexually, supplicates as follows: Oh Allah! Protect us from Satan, and make him away from us. If the two spouses get a child as a result of this sexual intercourse, Satan would not be able to harm the child” [51].

       
    • The husband must play with his wife, talk to her nicely, and kiss her in order to arouse her sexually. In addition, a husband must wait for his wife to satisfy her sexual desire. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which reads as follows:“ If a husband has an intercourse with his wife he must be truthful with her. If he got sexually satisfied before she does, then he should wait for her to get her satisfaction” [52].

                  In addition, Omar bin AbdulAziz (may Allah be pleased with him) is reported to have narrated the following Hadith of Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), which reads as follows:“ Don't approach your wife sexually and have intercourse with her right away. You should wait until she is as sexually aroused as you are. The man asked: Oh Messenger of Allah! What should I do [in order to achieve that?] He (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) replied: Kiss her, touch her, and try to arouse her. If you notice that is she is as ready sexually as you are, then perform the intercourse” [53].

       
    • In addition, it is also an act of Sunnah to perform a complete ablution by taking a full bath, or a partial ablution, as one does to offer a prayer, if the husband desires to have another intercourse with her. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which reads as follows:“ If a husband has an intercourse with his wife once, and wanted to repeat it again, let him perform an ablution” [54].

    This good practice is purer, more hygienic and enables the person to have a stronger sexual strength and desire.

     


    Fun while taking a bath

                A fun with the wife is not confined to the bed only. A husband may have fun with his wife all the time, if privacy for both is well secured and maintained. It is reported of mother Aeshah (may Allah be pleased with her) that she said, which read as follows:“ Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) and I, bathed of the same pot of water that we placed between both of us. He (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) would beat me to take the water until I say to him, let me have some! Let me have some!” [55].


    Fun at home

                Mother Aeshah (may Allah be pleased with her) was once asked, which read as follows:“ What would Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) do first when he entered his home? She replied: He brushed his teeth with his Siwak, the wooden toothbrush. I would think that he cleans his mouth and makes it smell better in order to hug his family and kiss them”. Mother Aeshah (may Allah be pleased with her) also reported that, which read as follows:“ Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) kissed one of his wives and went straight out to the Masjid to offer his prayers. He did not perform Wudu ablution” [56].


    Fun with wife outside the house

                As we pointed out earlier, fun with the wife is permitted at all times and at all places if the full privacy is secured and maintained. No body must see a husband and wife having fun or playing with each other in public. Mother Aeshah (may Allah be pleased with her) is reported to have said, which read as follows:“ While I was young, before I put much weight on me, Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) and I were on a trip. He advised his Companions (may Allah be pleased with him) to go ahead of him and called me to race with him. I beat him in running. Then, Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) did not ask me any more to race with him for a while. Later on, after I gained weight and forgot that I've beaten him in the race, I was again on a trip with him. He advised his Companions (may Allah be pleased with him) to go ahead of him for a distance. Then, he told me: come let's have a running race! I totally forgot the previous incident when I beat him in the race. Mother Aeshah (may Allah be pleased with her) commented: Oh Messenger of Allah! How can I race with you and I am as heavy as you can see? He (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: You must do it. Thus, we raced and he beat me this time. He (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) began laughing and said: Oh Aeshah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon her), this win [of mine] by that win [of yours] in the race” [57].

                It is important to note here that it is completely unlawful to reveal the secrets of marriage. It is an unacceptable practice to talk about what takes place between a husband and his wife in privacy. Abu Horairah (may Allah be pleased with him) reported that once Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) , after we finished the prayer, turned to us and said, which read as follows:“ Remain seated! Is there among you who comes out of his house, after he does whatever he likes with his wife, comes out and tells other: I've done such and such with my wife? Those who were present did not reply anything. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) turned to the women and asked the same thing, and they did the same. A young woman, who was present then, sat on her knee, stretched up to be noticed and her voice heard by Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) , and said: By Allah! They all do, males and females. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said: Do you know the example of the person who does so? His example is like that of a male and female Satans who meets one another on the road, satisfy their sexual desire by getting their thrill while people are watching” [58].

                In order to perpetuate the matrimonial life, Islam sets forth certain rights and duties on each of the two spouses. This tends to protect family structure from disintegration at future time. Both spouses must understand their relative rights and duties.


    The rights of wife over her husband

                It suffices here to list some verses of Quran and traditions of Hadith of Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) that illustrate the rights of the wife in Islam.

    1. Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) states in Quran Sura Nisa (4:19):“ On the contrary live with them on a footing of kindness and equity. If ye take a dislike to them, it may be that ye dislike a thing, and Allah brings about through it a great deal of good”.

       
    2. Allah also (subhanahu wa ta'ala) states in Quran Sura Baqarah (2:228):“ And women shall have rights similar to the rights against them, according to what is equitable; but men have a degree (of advantage) over them. And Allah is Exalted in Power, Wise”.

       
    3. Allah's Messenger (subhanahu wa ta'ala)is reported to have said:“ The best among you is one who is best to his family [wife], and I as Allah's Messenger am the best among you to my family”.

       
    4. One of the Companions (may Allah be pleased with him) asked Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), which read as follows:“ What is the right of the wife? Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said: To feed her if you eat, clothe her if you clothe yourself, don't slap her on the face, don't be nasty to her and don't be away from her [physically] except while both of you are at the same house” [59].

       
    5. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which read as follows:“ The most perfect Believers are those who are best in moral conduct, and the best among them are those who are best to their women” [60].

       
    6. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which read as follows:“ Be mindful of Allah concerning women. You have taken them in by Allah's Trust and their private parts became lawful for you with Allah's Word” [61].

       
    7. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which read as follows:“ A [married male] Believer should not hate his Believing wife. He may dislike one of her attitudes, but he would [definitely] like another one of hers” [62].

    As such, we see that full perfection is due to Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) alone. No man is perfect one hundred percent on this earth.

     


    The rights of a husband over his wife

                The following are only hints from the Glorious Quran and Hadith concerning the rights of a husband over his wife.

    1. Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) states in Quran Sura Nisa [Women] describing the righteous women, (4:34):“ Therefore the righteous women are devoutly obedient, and guard in (the husband's) absence what Allah would have them guard”.

       
    2. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said to mother (may Allah be pleased with him) when she asked him, which read as follows:“ Whose right is the greatest on a woman [wife]? He (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) replied: Her husband. She continued: Whose right is the greatest on a man? He (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: His mother”.

       
    3. Hossain bin Mohsen reported that his aunt once said to him, which read as follows:“ I went once to Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) asking him about a certain matter. He (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) asked: Who is this woman? Does she have a husband? I replied affirmatively. He (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) further asked: How do you treat him? I replied: I do my best serving him, until I can't. He (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) commented: You better take care of him as he is [your husband], either your Jannah, Paradise or your Fire” [63].

       
    4. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which read as follows:“ The best of women is the one who pleases you if you look at her, obeys you if you commands her [to do a lawful item], and protects your privacy and wealth if you are absent”.

       
    5. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which read as follows:“ If a woman [wife] maintains her five daily prayers, observes the fast of the month of Ramadan, protects her private parts [by not committing adultery or fornication], and obeys her husband, she would be given the choice to enter Jannah, Paradise through any gate she likes” [64].

       
    6. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which read as follows:“ If I were to command someone to prostrate to another person, I would have commanded a wife to prostrate before her husband”.

     


    Divorce in Islam

                Islam regards marriage bond as sacred and blessed. As such, Islam is keen to strengthen the relationship between the two spouses. Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) indicates the great value of the marriage bond as He (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) states in Quran Sura Nisa (4:21):“ And how could ye take it when ye have gone in unto each other and they have taken from you a solemn covenant”.

                In fact, Allah's Mssenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which read as follows:“ Iblis [Satan], places his throne on water and sends his troops. The closest one [of his troops to him] is that who has the greatest trail and temptation [to mankind]. As such, Satan would bring that member of his troop closer to him [in honor and respect for what he did]. One of the members of Satan's troops would come forward and reports what [evil activities] he did. Satan would comment: 'You did not do anything. Then another one of his troops would come forward and report: I did not leave that man [a husband] until I separated him from his wife. Satan would bring that one of the members of his troop closer to him [in honor and respect] saying: Yes indeed. It is you [who deserves the honor]” [65].

                Similarly, Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) demonstrated the respect and honor of the marriage bond by saying, which read as follows:“ He is not considered among us [Muslims], who turns a woman against her husband” [66].

                Although Islam places a great importance on the marriage integrity and declares it holy and honorable, yet Islam legalizes divorce that breaks this great bond. Nevertheless, Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have described divorce, which read as follows:“ The most hatred lawful item in the Sight of Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) is divorce” [67].

                Islam reached this decision when marriage reaches a dead end between the two spouses and there is no other solution except divorce. Islam is keen to protect the Muslim family and the Islamic society. The anti-social behavior of husband or wife can cause chaos in the society. Such chaos may very well lead to mixed lineage, falsified inheritance, deprivation of genuine rights and spread of indecency in the community.

                Although divorce is lawful, it is still well restricted. In fact, divorce is not a toy in the hand of the person, which he may use it any way when he or she likes. Muslim scholars illustrate that divorce must take one of the four following forms:

    1. Divorce may be compulsory when the two assigned referees decide it in the case of the disputed spouses. Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) states in Quran Sura Nisa (4:35):“ If ye fear a breach between them twain, appoint (two) arbiters, one from his family, and the other from hers; if they wish for peace, Allah will cause their reconciliation: for Allah hath full knowledge, and is acquainted with all things”.

       
    2. Divorce is unlawful, if there is no sound and visible reason or ground for it.

       
    3. Divorce is permissible, if the wife is vicious in terms of character and attitudes.

       
    4. Divorce is required, if the wife is not committed to the Islamic teachings, or if she is indecent or vulgar.

                The same items also apply to the husband as well. If a husband does not commit himself to the Islamic teachings, if he is indecent or if he has a bad character, or bad personality, or if he has physical defects that make life miserable with him, a wife is entitled to seek divorce from such a husband on such grounds.

     


    Khul'u in Islam

                Khul'u is divorce on the instance of the wife's request in Islam, who must pay her husband compensation in order for him to accept divorcing her.

                If marriage were not based on love, affection, comfort, and agreement between the two spouses, life then would turn into misery rather happiness and comfort. Marriage, in such a case, would no longer be a harmony, peace of mind and comfort, but rather hardship and adversity. If one of the spouses hated the other, or doesn't trust him, there would be no hope for marriage continuation. Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) states in Quran Sura Nisa (4:19):“ On the contrary live with them on a footing of kindness and equity. If ye take a dislike to them it may be that ye dislike a thing, and Allah brings about through it a great deal of good”.

                Islam legalized khul'u however when life with the other spouse becomes unbearable. Of course, divorce normally is a right to the husband; therefore, he can issue it when he feels fit. However, if the wife hates the life with her husband and could no longer take it, then, in such a case, she may demand divorce by the process of Khul'u, paying the husband compensation for what he had already paid her in order to terminate the marriage.

                This is the justice in the best form, we believe. A husband paid the dowry, bore the marriage expenses, and paid other expenses as well. Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) states in Quran Sura Baqarah (2:229):“ It is not lawful for you, [men], to take back any of your gifts (from your wives), except when both parties fear that they would be unable to keep the limits ordained by Allah. If ye [judges] do indeed fear that they would be unable to keep the limits ordained by Allah, there is not blame on either of them if she give something for her freedom. These are the limits ordained by Allah; so do not transgress them if any do transgress the limits ordained by Allah, such persons wrong [themselves as well as others]”.

                Islam aims at preserving people's honor and dignity. Islam also aims to protect and secure the society by closing all doors for possible social corruption. The presence of a husband with a woman whom he does not like, and vice versa, would very likely lead to suspicious and unlawful relationships. Therefore, Islam legalized divorce. Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) states in Quran Sura Nisa (4:130):“ But if they disagree [and must part], Allah will provide abundance for all from His All-Reaching bounty: for Allah is He that careth for all and is Wise”.


    Results of sexual freedom and confusion

                Islam bans adultery and all types of fornication labeling it as one of the major sins in Islam. In fact, Islam bans all acts and means that may lead one to commit adultery or fornication. Sayyid Qutub illuminated in his book In the Shade of Quran:" Islam aims at eliminating all forms of pure animalistic sexual behavior. Islam wishes to help establish a proper home and a caring family resulting of the proper and lawful sexual relationship. Islam does not tolerate a mere sexual relationship that makes the human being very much like an animal, which is driven only by his mere sex for mating and reproduction. Islam erects a loving and caring relationship between two hearts and bodies of two human beings who live together and have the same hopes and common ground life. The proper "marriage nest" that is built on such basis would house the new generation under the custody, care, and guardianship of both Muslim parents. Hence, Islam instituted very strict and severe punishment for adultery and fornication. Islam considers adultery as animalistic behavior that abolishes all human manners and principles. If a person is merely interested and concerned to satisfy his sexual desires, he would turn into an animal in the shape and body of a human being. Such a person may not be trusted for being in charge of the prosperity on earth. In fact, there is no real emotional satisfaction of the mere sexual relationship. Emotional relationship is a continuous, everlasting, and caring one. It is not, in reality, what is categorized to be in terms of a short-term materialistic love as a response for the bodily attractions only, although some people may shed so many emotional characteristics on it. Islam does not, at all, fight, or stand in the way of the normal human behavior, but rather controls it, organizes it, purifies it, and elevates it above the level of the animalistic behavior. Islam promotes the human sexuality or lust to become the core of the personal morals, social attitudes, and relationships. As for adultery and fornication, and more precisely prostitution, one feels that it is, in reality, empty of all these feelings, emotions, and sense of belonging and relationship. Islam looks at prostitution as one of the lowest ill acts of a human society. Such a poor practice makes man below the level of animals in attitudes and behavior. In fact, there are many animals who live a decent and organized social life, away from the mess and confusion that prostitution creates in some human societies "[68].

                It is useful to list some of the bad results and the chaos situation that sexual confusion brings to a human society and to the morals of the people. One of the inevitable results is the spread of adultery and fornication in the society. These are some of the results of the sexual confusion in the human society:

    • The spread of epidemic and fatal diseases. Such diseases are not restricted to the person who practices such unlawful activities, but it rather spreads to others, whom he or she contacts. In fact, such diseases may, very likely, spread very wide in the community. Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) states in Quran Sura Isra (17:32):“ Nor come nigh to adultery: for it is a shameful [deed] and an evil, opening the road [to other evils]”.
      Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which read as follows:“ Be mindful of adultery [and fornication] as it possesses six traits. Three of these traits [are noticeable] in this world while the other three are felt in Hereafter. As for the worldly three traits, they are as follows: it would remove brightness from the face of the practicing person. It would also cause a person to feel poverty. In addition, it would shorten the life span of a person. As for the other three traits that would be felt in the Hereafter, they are as follows: it would entitle the practicing person to receive the wrath and anger of Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala). It would also cause such a person to have poor results when he/she is held accountable for what he did in this world. Lastly, it would entitle such a person to dwell eternally in the Fire of hell” [69].

      Adultery and fornication would remove brightness from the face of the practicing person because of the deprivation to enjoy full personal satisfaction, physically and spiritually. Such a person would feel low in morals and attitude. Thus, such a person would turn into an animal, in the shape of a human being. All what such a person cares for and interested in is to satisfy his sexual desire, regardless of the means. Furthermore, adultery would also cause a person to face poverty because of the huge amounts of money he would spend on such unlawful sexual activities. Such a person would exert lot of efforts and wastes lot of valuable personal energies as well, that he might have utilized it in a better and more productive form. Thus, spending such wealth and energy causes constant regret. Indulging in unlawful sexual activities would cause great harms to the health. In fact, adultery is a major health hazard. Thus, adultery and fornication would shorten the life span of a person because of the potential diseases that may endanger his life and possibly cut it short.

       
    • Illegitimate children: Such children are deprived the normal care and custody of real loving parents. As a result, such children would lack the objective and proper guidance and direction in their lives. No one, other than the real parents, could offer an honest, truthful, and meaningful guidance to a child. Consequently, such deprived class of children would grow up to be uncontrolled and full of hatred to the rest of the society members. Anna Freud, in her book Children without Families, comments on the psychological disorders that can't be corrected by a psychiatric specialist except with great difficulties[70].

       
    • Psychological disorders:Unlawful sexual relationships would lead to a lot of psychological diseases and disorders. People who practice and maintain such unlawful relationships would develop unease, lack of personal happiness and satisfaction, inferiority complex, guilt, and self-discern as a result of practicing unlawful sexual relationships. Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) states in Quran Sura Rum (30:21):“ And among His Signs is this, that He created for you mates from among yourselves, that ye may dwell in tranquility with them, and He has put love and mercy between your [hearts]: verily in that are Signs for those who reflect”.

       
    • Sexual confusion leads to moral confusion in the society. It is a well-established fact that money could easily trap and lure people to do anything evil. Money also enables a person to get all what he likes in terms of pleasures and satisfaction. Thus, if those who are practicing unlawful satisfactions lack the needed funds, they may commit any type of crime to satisfy their needs. Such individuals may steal, cheat, molest, rape, lie, deceive, bribe, or even kill in order to get what they want. They do not care where, or how they get the needed funds, even if this is on the account of others.

       
    • Descending of the Wrath promised by Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala). Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) promised the communities where adultery and fornication is practiced or condoned, to receive one of the severest punishments. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which read as follows:“ My Ummah, nation would continue to enjoy a blessed life so long as illegitimate children are not produced in their society. When illegitimate children become available in the society, then the punishment of Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) would become imminent” [71].

    [23] Sayyid Sabeq, 'Fiqhu-Sunnah', Vol.2, P.7.
    [24] Bukhari and Muslim reported this Hadith.
    [25] Abu Daoud reported this Hadith.
    [26] Muslim reported this Hadith.
    [27] Tirmithi reported this Hadith.
    [28] Tirmithi reported this Hadith.
    [29] Tirmithi reported this Hadith.
    [30] Ibn Majah reported this Hadith.
    [31] Bukhari reported this Hadith.
    [32] All reports of Hadith except for Muslim reported this Hadith.
    [33] Ahmad and Nasai reported this Hadith.
    [34] Uqiyah is a weight.
    [35] Ahmad, Tirmithi and Nasai reported this Hadith.
    [36] Bukhari and Muslim reported this Hadith.
    [37] All the members of the group of narrator reported this Hadith.
    [38] Bukhari reported this Hadith.
    [39] Muslim reported this Hadith.
    [40] Abu Dawoud and Tirmithi reported this Hadith.
    [41] Bukhari reported this Hadith.
    [42] Bukhari reported this Hadith.
    [43] Ahmad reported this Hadith.
    [44] Muslim reported this Hadith.
    [45] Ahmad reported this Hadith.
    [46] Abu Daoud and Tirmithi reported this Hadith.
    [47] Tirmithi reported this Hadith.
    [48] Muslim reported this Hadith.
    [49] All the reporters of Hadith except for Muslim reported this Hadith.
    [50] Bukhari and Muslim reported this Hadith.
    [51] Bukhari reported this Hadith.
    [52] Abu Ya'la reported this Hadith.
    [53] Al-Moghni, Vol.8, P.137.
    [54] Muslim reported this Hadith.
    [55] Bukhari and Muslim reported this Hadith.
    [56] Ahmad reported this Hadith.
    [57] Ahmad, Abu Daoud and Nasai reported this Hadith.
    [58] Ahmad and Abu Daoud reported this Hadith.
    [59] Ahmad reported this Hadith.
    [60] Tirmithi reported this Hadith.
    [61] Muslim reported this Hadith.
    [62] Muslim reported this Hadith.
    [63] Tirmithi reported this Hadith.
    [64] Ahmad and Tabarani reported this Hadith.
    [65] Muslim reported this Hadith.
    [66] Abu Daoud and Nasai reported this Hadith.
    [67] Abu Daoud and Hakim reported this Hadith.
    [68] In the Shade of Quran, Sayyid Qutub.
    [69] Baihaqi reported this Hadith.
    [70] Man between Materialism and Islam, Mohammed Qutub.
    [71] Ahmad reported this Hadith.


    Conclusion

                We have presented in this book some of the major highlights of Islamic standpoint on sex. We aim through this booklet to offer some introductory remarks about this very important issue of human life, and the method Islam follows to govern it to become as one of the acts of Islamic worships. A Muslim would be rewarded if he/she uses sex in the manner described and approved by Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) and His Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him).

                This booklet is hoped to urge a non-Muslim to further his knowledge about Islam; which offers the best way of life. Islam encompasses all aspects of life, the private, and the public as well. In fact, if a Muslim were serious about his Islamic practices, his reward would continue reaching him, even after death. If a Muslim left a good legacy or guidance behind him, or if he even guided and directed people to a certain good practice, he would continue to receive the promised reward after his departure of this world. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which read as follows:“ Upon the death of a human being, his [rewards for his worldly] actions would discontinue except for [the following] three items: a continuous charity, a beneficial knowledge he left behind, or a righteous son [or daughter] wholeheartedly would continue to pray for him” [72].

                Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is also reported to have said, which read as follows:“ Whoever calls people to a guidance [good practice] would receive the same reward as they do. Their rewards would not be decreased. Whoever calls people to a misguidance, [ill practice] would receive the same sin as they do. Their sins would not be decreased” [73].

                An indication to the fact that Islam pays attention to the minute details in the comprehensive life of a Muslim is the directive given to Muslims by Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) while going to answer the call of nature. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which read as follows:“ If a person wants to answer the call of nature, upon entering the [bathroom], let him enter with the left foot saying: in the name of Allah. Oh Allah! I seek refuge with You against filth and evil things. Then, when such a person leaves the bathroom should get out the bathroom area with the right foot saying: All praise is due to Allah (subhanahu wa ta'ala) , [He is] Who removed the harmful things away from me and made me healthy” [74].

                Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) is reported to have said, which read as follows:“ Don't face the Qiblah [Prayer] direction neither when you urinate, nor when you have bowl movement”.

                It is worthwhile mentioning the opinion of one of the Western canonists concerning the Islamic system and laws and their comprehensiveness to cover all aspects of life. Dr. Hopkins, the Professor of Philosophy in Harvard University, in his book The Spirit of International Policy writes:" The progress and development of the Islamic countries is not by following the Western styles, which claim that religion has no say over the daily life of the individual, the laws and the political system. Man must find in the religion a source for growth and progress. At times, some people wonder whether Islam is capable of generating new ideas and issue independent rulings that coincide with the requirements of the modern life. The response to this is: 'Yes. Islam is internally ready to grow, or rather one may say, Islam is better than many other similar systems in its ability to develop. Nevertheless, the difficulty is not in the ability of the religion of Islam because the lack of means, but rather the lack of inclination and desire to use them. I do feel that I can rightly decide that Islam possesses all the necessary requirements for success".

                It is, therefore, safe to say that Islam is the greatest religion that accompanies and guides man in every step of his life and affairs.

                A religion that can do this for the life of the Believers, is definitely worth holding tight on and invite others to embrace. Non-Muslims are invited to study the pure realities of Islam and see for themselves the benefits that can derive from Islam.

                Non-Muslims must not be partial in making a decision before learning the merits and characteristics of Islam.

                Islam is a religion that brings all good and stops all evils. Islam has the solutions for the entire problems of man on earth. The real problem, however, lies in the poor and incomplete commitment of its followers to apply its rules and spirit.

                Unfortunately, a great majority of Muslims tend to shun away from the full application of the Islamic rules and regulations. They do that, at times, to satisfy their own whims and desires, and at other times because the rules of Islam conflict with their personal interests, which aim at fulfilling their goals even if this was by cheating or exploitation of others and by all means of corruption.

    [72] Bukhari and Muslim reported this Hadith.
    [73] Bukhari and Muslim reported this Hadith.
    [74] Bukhari reported this Hadith.

     

     

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    Title:Islamic Perspective of Sex  
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