Q; Tell me about masturbating, The islamic stand on masturbating.
A; All-Praise is due to Allah,
Naturally as growing youth, a person comes across these issues in their life, and temptations and desires flow due to hormones chaining in the body as a boy or girl becomes a man or woman. No doubt amongst these desires a young man comes across masturbation. But the question stands is this practice of Masturbation an act that is permissible in the Islamic Law.???
Allah The All-High has warned us about following desires for He The Exalted said in verse translated close to the meaning,
'And Allah would turn to you in mercy; but those who follow vain desires would have you go tremendously astray.' (4/27)
And He The-Exalted said, 'And who is further astray than he who follows his desire without guidance from Allah.' (28/50)
Abu Muhammad 'Abdullah bin Amr bin al-'As, radiyallahu 'anhu, reported that the Messenger of Allah, sallallahu 'alayhi wasallam, said: "None of you (truly) believes until his desire or inclination is in accordance with what I have brought or subservient to what I came with."
[Related by al-Maqdidsi in his Book of Hujjah, and its graded Authentic]
It is clearly stated that the Shari'a orders a Muslim to leave all desires, and that it is a thing that will lead one astray and my be the cause of their Punishments on the day of judgement. Masturbation is a sexual desire that is not Islamicly approved according to Shari'a, and this is in the consensus opinion of amongst the Scholars from the four Imams up to the contemporary Scholars of our times. Sheikh Muhammed Salih Al-Munajjid (may Allah preserve him) said, 'Masturbation (for both men and women) is haraam (forbidden) in Islam based on the following evidence:
First from the Qur’aan:
Imam Shafi’i stated that masturbation is forbidden based on the following verses from the Qur’aan (interpretation of the meaning):
"And those who guard their chastity (i.e. private parts, from illegal sexual acts). Except from their wives or (the captives and slaves) that their right hands possess, - for them, they are free from blame. But whoever seeks beyond that, then those are the transgressors." 23.5-7 Here the verses are clear in forbidding all illegal sexual acts (including masturbation) except for the wives or that their right hand possess. And whoever seeks beyond that is the transgressor.
"And let those who find not the financial means for marriage keep themselves chaste, until Allah enriches them of His bounty." 24.33. This verse also clearly orders whoever does not have the financial means to marry to keep himself chaste and be patient in facing temptations (including masturbation) until Allah enriches them of His bounty.
Secondly, from the sunnah of the Prophet (peace be upon him):
Abdullaah ibn Mas’ood said, "We were with the Prophet while we were young and had no wealth whatsoever. So Allaah’s Messenger said, "O young people! Whoever among you can marry, should marry, because it helps him lower his gaze and guard his modesty (i.e. his private parts from committing illegal sexual intercourse etc.), and whoever is not able to marry, should fast, as fasting diminishes his sexual power." Bukhari:5066. The hadeeth orders men who are not able to marry to fast despite the hardship encountered in doing so, and not to masturbate despite the ease with which it can be done.' (Fatwa:329, to view click on link-http://www.islam/-qa.com/en/ref/329/masturbation)
Sheikh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah was asked about masturbation and he replied:With regard to masturbation, the basic ruling is that it is haraam according to the majority of scholars, and the one who does it should be given a ta’zeer punishment, but it is not like zina. And Allaah knows best.
(Al-Fataawa al-Kubra, 3/439.)
In the Fatwas of Permanent Committee, it was stated;
The preponderant of scholar's views about masturbation commonly referred to as "Secret Habit" is that it is an unlawful sexual activity. The majority of religious scholars held this view based on the generality of the saying of Allah (Exalted be He), And those who guard their chastity (i.e. private parts, from illegal sexual acts) Except from their wives or (the slaves) that their right hands possess, - for then, they are free from blame; But whoever seeks beyond that, then those are the transgressors; Allah (Exalted be He) praises those who fulfill their sexual desire with their wives or slave girls and considers those who fulfill their sexual desire elsewhere as transgressors who leave what Allah made lawful for them to commit unlawful sexual activities including masturbation. It has many harmful effects and bad consequences such as exhaustion of power and impotence. The Islamic Shari`ah protects man against anything that may cause harm to his religion, body, mind, money or honor. (Fatwa :1376 Part :22 Page :55 - 56)
But some fuqaha’ allow masturbation if a person fears for his religious commitment or physical well being, under the heading of committing the lesser of two evils.
Imam Ahmad has two opinions: one that it is permissible according to necessity (Fitnah); and the other that it is haram, because he can resolve to fasting instead.
(Al-Mowsou'a Al-Fiqhe 4/98)
Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah (may Allah have mercy on him) was asked about a man whose desire overwhelms him and he masturbates, and he knows that this may be dealt with by fasting but it is too difficult for him.
He replied: With regard to water (semen) that is emitted involuntarily, there is no sin on him for that, but he has to do ghusl if the water came out gushing. As for making it happen by choice, by means of masturbation, this is haraam according to most scholars, and it is one of the two opinions narrated from Ahmad; rather it is the stronger of the two. According to one report, it is makrooh, but if he is compelled to do it, such as if he is afraid of committing zina or becoming ill if he does not masturbate, then in this case there are two well-known scholarly opinions. In this case, several of the earlier and later (scholars) granted a concession allowing it, but others forbade it. And Allah knows best.
End quote from al-Fataawa al-Kubra, 1/302
Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen (may Allah have mercy on him) said: “The one who masturbates unnecessarily should be given a disciplinary punishment.” … “unnecessarily” means without having any need for that. Needs are of two types: spiritual and physical. As for spiritual needs, they are when a person fears that he may fall into zina, such as if he is in a country where it is easy to commit zina, so we say: If his desire becomes too strong, he will either extinguish it with this action (masturbation) or he will go to a place where he can find prostitutes and commit zina. So in this case we say to him: This is a legitimate need, because the principle in sharee‘ah is to ward off the greater of two evils with the lesser. This is in accordance with sound reasoning. If this person must fulfil his desire, in one way or the other, then in that case we say to him: This action is permissible because it is a case of necessity.
With regard to physical needs, if a person fears physical harm if this accumulated semen is not expelled, because in some people, if their desire becomes strong and this accumulated semen is not expelled, then they may develop psychological problems and hate to mix with people or sit with them…
So if he fears that he may be harmed, then it is permissible for him to do this action, because it is a physical need. If it is not necessary but he does it, he should be given a disciplinary punishment, i.e., a punishment that will serve as a deterrent.
End quote from al-Sharh al-Mumti‘, 14/318
Baring in mind that the meaning of it being 'permissible according to necessity' is not an excuse for one to resolve to masturbation if they cant control their desires, but rather the Scholars gave examples such as if a man was in-front of a woman and about to fornicate, instead of choosing to sleep with her he resolved to masturbation, or one was about to go to a prostitute and instead resolves to masturbation…
The final ruling to this is that it is Haram and is not an act thats expectable by Shari'a and one must repent to Allah for it, the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “The one who repents is like the one who did not sin.” Narrated by Ibn Maajah; classed as hasan by al-Albaani in Saheeh Ibn Maajah, 3427.
As for curing the habit of masturbation, Sheikh Muhammed Salih Al-Munajjid (may Allah preserve him) said,
we recommend the following suggestions:
1) The motive to seek a cure for this problem should be solely following Allaah’s orders and fearing His punishment.
2) A permanent and quick cure from this problem lies in marriage as soon as the person is able, as shown in the Prophet’s hadeeth.
3) Keeping oneself busy with what is good for this world and the hereafter is essential in breaking this habit before it becomes second nature after which it is very difficult to rid oneself of it.
4) Lowering the gaze (from looking at forbidden things such as pictures, movies etc.) will help suppress the desire before it leads one to commit the haraam (forbidden). Allaah orders men and women to lower their gaze as shown in the following two verses and in the Prophet’s hadeeth (interpretations of the meanings):
"Tell the believing men to lower their gaze (from looking at forbidden things) and protect their private parts (from illegal sexual acts, etc.). That is purer for them. Verily, Allah is all-aware of what they do. And tell the believing women to lower their gaze (from looking at forbidden things) and protect their private parts (from illegal sexual acts, etc.) ..... " 24.30-31
Allaah’s messenger said: "Do not follow a casual (unintentional) look (at forbidden things) with another look." Al-Tirmidhi 2777. This is a general instruction by the Prophet to abstain from all that may sexually excite a person because it might lead him/her to commit the haraam (forbidden).
5) Using one’s available leisure time in worshipping Allaah and increasing religious knowledge.
6) Being cautious not to develop any of the medical symptoms that may result from masturbation such as weak eyesight, weak nervous system, and/or back pain. More importantly, feeling of guilt and anxiety that can be complicated by missing obligatory prayers because of the need to shower (ghusl) after every incidence of masturbation.
7) Avoiding the illusion that some youth have that masturbation is permissible because it prevents them from committing illegal sexual acts such as fornication or even homosexuality.
8) Strengthening one’s willpower and avoiding spending time alone as recommended by the Prophet when he said "Do not spend the night alone" Ahmad 6919.
9) Following the Prophet’s aforementioned hadeeth and fast when possible, because fasting will temper one’s sexual desire and keep it under control. However, one should not overreact and swear by Allaah not to return to the act because if one does not honor one’s promise, one would be facing the consequences of not living up to one’s oath to Allaah. Also, note that medication to diminish one’s sexual desire is strictly prohibited because it might permanently affect one’s sexual ability.
10) Trying to follow the Prophet’s recommendation concerning the etiquette of getting ready for bed, such as reading well-known supplications, sleeping on the right side, and avoiding sleeping on the belly (the Prophet forbade sleeping on the belly).
11) Striving hard to be patient and chaste, because persistence will eventually, Allaah willing, lead to attaining those qualities as second nature, as the Prophet explains in the following hadeeth:
"Whoever seeks chastity Allaah will make him chaste, and whoever seeks help from none but Allaah, He will help him, and whoever is patient He will make it easy for him, and no one has ever been given anything better than patience." Bukhari:1469.
12) Repenting, asking forgiveness from Allaah, doing good deeds, and not losing hope and feeling despair are all prerequisites to curing this problem. Note that losing hope is one of the major sins punishable by Allaah.
13) Finally, Allaah is the Most Merciful and He always responds to whoever calls on Him. So, asking for Allah’s forgiveness will be accepted, by His will.
Wallahu a’lam. And Allah knows what is best and most correct…