According to Quran and Sunnah
...(Lawful to you in marriage) are chaste women from the believers and chaste women from those who were given the Scripture (Jews and Christians) before your time, when you have given their due Mahr (bridal-money given by the husband to his wife at the time of marriage), desiring chastity (i.e. taking them in legal wedlock) not committing illegal sexual intercourse, nor taking them as girlfriends. ...
"Shacking up" brings a curse taken to the grave
Hadith - Sahih Muslim, Narrated AbudDarda'
AbudDarda' related from the Prophet of Allah that he came upon a (slave) woman who was in the advanced stage of pregnancy at the
door of a tent. He said: Perhaps he (the man accompanying her) intends to cohabit with her. They said: Yes. Thereupon Allah's Messenger said: I had decided to curse him with such a curse as may go along with him to his grave. How can he own him (the child to be born) and that is not lawful for him, and how can be take him as a servant for that is not lawful for him?
Sex outside of marriage is prohibited
Hadith - Sahih Bukhari Volume 3, Book 48, Number 817, Narrated Zaid bin Khalid
Allah's Apostle ordered that an unmarried man who committed illegal sexual intercourse be scourged one hundred lashes and sent into exile for one year.
A Muslim cannot date and should always have the intentions not be alone with a non-mahram; if it is your intentions not to be alone with a non-mahram, but circumstances beyond your control mandate that you are (such as entering a store, placing an order, calling a plumber to fix an emergency leak), that is different. It must be your intentions not to be alone with a non-mahrahm person, though.
Islam protects us from ourselves by segregating men from women who are not directly related (these people are known as mahrham) as specific in the Qur'an. Instead of dating, a Muslim and Muslimah meet in a pre-arranged place (such as a room in the Masjid) with a wali/witness/guardian/escort present in the room. The couple will discuss a marriage contract and ask questions of importance to them regarding marriage. The best person to seek for a spouse is the pious.
Being alone with a non-mahram
Hadith - Ahmad and Al-Tirmidhi 3118, Narrated Umar ibn al-Khattab , Tirmidhi transmitted it.
The Prophet said, "Whenever a man is alone with a woman the Devil makes a third."
Hadith - Sahih Bukhari, Book 25, Number 5403, Narrated Abdullah ibn Amr ibn al-'As
Some persons from Banu Hisham entered the house of Asma' daughter of Umays when AbuBakr also entered (and she was at that time his wife). He (AbuBakr) saw it and disapproved of it and he made a mention of that to Allah's Messenger and said: I did not see but good only (in my wife).
Thereupon Allah's Messenger said: Verily Allah has made her immune from all this. Then Allah's Messenger stood on the pulpit and said: After this day no man should enter the house of another person in his absence, but only when he is accompanied by one person or two persons.
Hadith - Sahih Bukhari Book 25, Number 5399, Narrated Jabir ibn Abdullah
Allah's Messenger said: Behold, no person should spend the night with a married woman, but only in case he is married to her or he is her Mahram.
Hadith - Al-Tirmidhi 3119,
Narrated Jabir ibn Abdullah
Fatawa on Phone Usage
Question: What is the ruling concerning a young man who is not married speaking to a young lady who is also not married over the telephone?
There is no harm in casual speech due to some need if it is free from any sort of evil. However, such speech must be restricted to only what is necessary.
Shaikh ibn Jibreen
Note: "what is necessary" does not include emotional desires or 'needs'. This is referring to accomplishing things that are necessary and cannot be avoided, i.e. there is no appropriate person available to talk to in order to accomplish the needed goal or item. For instance, speaking with a doctor or mechanic, store clerk to inquire as to a price, etc., is that which is necessary. Socializing is not considered that which is necessary, even in the workplace.
The Noble Qur'an 24:30
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.
Narrated Ibn Mas'uud r.a.: A man kissed a woman and then came to Allah's Messenger saaws and told him of that, so this Divine Inspiration was revealed to the Prophet saaws:- "And offer prayers perfectly at the two ends of the day, and in some hours of the night; [i.e. (five) compulsory prayers]. (Verily, the good deeds remove the evil deeds (small sins). That is a reminder for the mindful." (Qur'an 11:114) The man said, "Is this instruction for me only?" The Prophet saaws said, "It is for all those of my followers who encounter a similar situation."
Action Items for the uttaqun:
Remember... Allah, subhana watala, sees everything we do!
According to Quran and Sunnah
And those who say: "Our Lord! Bestow on us
Those will be rewarded with the highest place
The order to Marry
Hadith - Sahih Bukhari Volume 7, Book 62, No. 1, Narrated Anas bin Malik
A group of three men came to the houses of the wives of the Prophet asking how the Prophet worshipped (Allah), and when they were informed about that, they considered their worship insufficient and said, "Where are we from the Prophet as his past and future sins have been forgiven." Then one of them said, "I will offer the prayer throughout the night forever." The other said, "I will fast throughout the year and will not break my fast." The third said, "I will keep away from the women and will not marry forever." Allah's Apostle came to them and said, "Are you the same people who said so-and-so? By Allah, I am more submissive to Allah and more afraid of Him than you; yet I fast and break my fast, I do sleep and I also marry women. So he who does not follow my tradition in religion, is not from me (not one of my followers)."
We were with the Prophet while we were young and had no wealth whatever. So Allah's Apostle 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."
Sufyân ibn ‘Uyaynah (rahimahullâh) said, "The most nimble of creatures still have need of a voice. The cleverest women still need to have a husband, and the cleverest man still needs to consult wise men."
Al-Mahr (The Dowry)
And give to the women (whom you marry) their Mahr (obligatory bridal money given by the husband to his wife at the time of marriage) with a good heart, but if they, of their own good pleasure, remit any part of it to you, take it, and enjoy it without fear of any harm (as Allâh has made it lawful).
Stipulations in Marriage Contract
Regarding contracts the Prophet (Peace be upon him) said: The rights are decided by the conditions.
Yahya related to me from Malik that he had heard that Said ibn al-Musayyab was asked about a woman who made a stipulation on her husband not to take her away from her town. Said ibn al-Musayyab said, "He takes her away if he wishes."
Malik said, "The custom among us is that when a man marries a woman, and he makes a condition in the marriage contract that he will not marry after her or take a concubine, it means nothing unless there is an oath of divorce or setting-free attached to it. Then it is obliged and required of him."
“If he married her on the condition that he should not make her move from her house or her city, then this condition is valid, because it was reported that the Prophet said: ‘The most deserving of conditions to be fulfilled are those by means of which sexual intercourse becomes permissible for you.’ If he married her on the condition that he will not marry another wife, then she has the right to leave him if he does take another wife.” In conclusion, then, the conditions of the marriage contract are divided into three types, one of which must be adhered to, which is of benefit to the wife, such as her being able to stipulate that he cannot make her move from her house or city, or travel with him, or take another wife or a concubine. He has to adhere to these conditions, and if he does not, then she has the right to annul the marriage.” [Al-Mughni by Ibn Qudaamah, part 7, Kitaab al-Nikaah]
“Question: a man married a woman and she stipulated that he should not take another wife or make her move from her house, and that she could stay with her mother, so he married her on this basis. Does he have to adhere to this, and if he goes against these conditions, does his wife have the right to annul the marriage or not?
Answer: yes, these conditions and similar ones are valid according to the madhhab of Imaam Ahmad and other scholars among the Sahaabah and Taabi’een, such as ‘Umar ibn al-Khattaab, ‘Amr ibn al-‘Aas, Shurayh al-Qaadi, al-Oozaa’i and Ishaaq. According to the madhhab of Maalik, the condition states that if he marries another wife, (the first wife) has the choice of what to do, and this is a valid condition. The woman has the right to leave him in this case. This is similar to the idea in the Madhhab of Imaam Ahmad. The basis for this is the hadeeth narrated by (al-Bukhaari and Muslim) in al-Saheehayn from the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him): ‘The most deserving of conditions to be fulfilled are those by means of which sexual intercourse becomes permissible for you.’ ‘Umar ibn al-Khattaab said: ‘Rights are in accordance with conditions.’ The Prophet dictated that the conditions which make sexual intercourse permissible are more deserving of fulfilment than others. This is the ruling on conditions of this nature.” [al-Fataawa al-Kubra, part 3, Kitaab al-Nikaah].
The noted scholar Ibn 'Uthaimeen has stated:
It is the right of the woman to make stipulations at the writing of the marriage contract as she wishes and if these stipulations do not contradict Islamic law then the husband must fulfill them. For example, that he not marry a second wife and that if he does to dissolve the first marriage. This is not a problem. However, a new prospective wife cannot stipulate that the first wife be divorced before he marries her. I must say however that a first wife should not make such a stipulation that her husband not marry a second wife. I fear that if a woman makes this stipulation that the husband will, if he desires to marry a second woman, simply divorce the first one straight away [i.e. not even give her consideration] and it would no be to her benefit. Therefore I advise the woman not to make such a stipulation because this may be a manner by which the husband is able to follow a good sunnah.
Limit of What can be seen of the Woman Whom One Seeks to Marry
Question: If a young man proposes marriage to a young lady is it obligatory that he sees her? Also, is it correct that the young lady uncover her head to show more of her beauty to her proposing fiance? Please benefit us and may Allaah benefit you.
Answer: There is no harm (in the man seeing her), however it is not obligatory. Rather, it is recommended that he sees her and she sees him, because the Prophet (Sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam) commanded the one who proposed marriage to look at the woman. This is because that is better for causing agreement and harmony between them. So if she uncovers her face for him, and her hands and her head, there is no harm in that according to the correct opinion. Some of the people of knowledge have said that it is sufficient for her to uncover the face and the two hands. However, the correct opinion is that there is no harm in him seeing her head, face, hands and feet, based upon the mentioned hadeeth (above). However, this is not permissible with him being alone with her. Rather, her father, or brother, or someone else must be with them. This is because the Prophet (Sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam) said, "A man must never be alone with a woman unless there is someone who is a Mahram with them." (Agreed upon in Saheeh Al-Bukhaaree and Saheeh Muslim.) He (Sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam) also said, "A man must never be alone with a woman, for verily the Satan is their third." (At-Tirmithee and Ahmad)
Source: Sheikh ibn Baz, Al-Fataawaa ash-Shar'iyyah fil-Masaa'il il-'Asriyyah min Fataawaa 'Ulamaa' il-Balad il-Haraam, pp. 498-499. Translated by Aqeel Walker
Rights over one another
Allah's Apostle said, "From among all the conditions which you have to fulfill, the conditions which make it legal for you to have sexual relations (i.e. the marriage contract) have the greatest right to be fulfilled."
The following examples of behavior of a husband are haram (prohibited) and can lead to disobedience (to Allah) in the wife.
"He [the husband] may cause his wife different forms of harm, such as cursing her or her family, reviling her, verbally abusing her for the tiniest of reasons. He may insult her because of her family, if it is less prestigious or honorable than his. Or he may try to bring harm to her by divorcing her and then, before the waiting period is finished, bring her back as his wife and then divorce her again. All this is done without the intention of returning to a real married life but simply to harm her and transgress her rights. Or he may avoid having sexual intercourse with her for no reason or legal sanction. This may lead the woman to lose her chastity and doing something forbidden."
...And they (women) have rights (over their husbands as regards living expenses, etc.) similar (to those of their husbands) over them (as regards obedience and respect, etc.) to what is reasonable, but men have a degree (of responsibility) over them. And Allâh is All-Mighty, All-Wise.
The Prophet said, "...Listen! You have your rights upon your wives and they have their rights upon you. Your right is that they shall not allow anyone you dislike, to trample your bed and do not permit those whom you dislike to enter your home. Their right is that you should treat them well in the matter of food and clothing."
Salman told Abu Ad-Darda', "Your Lord has a right on you, your soul has a right on you, and your family has a right on you; so you should give the rights of all those who has a right on you." Abu Ad-Darda' came to the Prophet and narrated the whole story. The Prophet said, "Salman has spoken the truth."
...The Prophet said, "The best amongst you is the one who pays the rights of others generously."
Amr heard the Prophet say in his farewell address on the eve of his Last Pilgrimage, after he had glorified and praised Allah, he cautioned his followers: 'Listen! Treat women kindly; they are like prisoners in your hands. Beyond this you do not owe anything from them. Should they be guilty of flagrant misbehaviour, you may remove them from your beds, and beat them but do not inflict upon them any severe punishment. Then if they obey you, do not have recourse to anything else against them. Listen! You have your rights upon your wives and they have their rights upon you. Your right is that they shall not allow anyone you dislike, to trample your bed and do not permit those whom you dislike to enter your home. Their right is that you should treat them well in the matter of food and clothing.' [Transmitted by Tirmidhi]
O you who believe! Fulfill (your) obligations. ...
Some Marriage Conditions That Must Not Exist
The adulterer marries not but an adulteress or a Mushrikah and the adulteress none marries her except an adulterer or a Muskrik [and that means that the man who agrees to marry (have a sexual relation with) a Mushrikah (female polytheist, pagan or idolatress) or a prostitute, then surely he is either an adulterer, or a Mushrik (polytheist, pagan or idolater, etc.) And the woman who agrees to marry (have a sexual relation with) a Mushrik (polytheist, pagan or idolater) or an adulterer, then she is either a prostitute or a Mushrikah (female polytheist, pagan, or idolatress, etc.)]. Such a thing is forbidden to the believers (of Islâmic Monotheism).
(Lawful to you in marriage) are chaste women from the believers and chaste women from those who were given the Scripture (Jews and Christians) before your time, when you have given their due Mahr (bridal money given by the husband to his wife at the time of marriage), desiring chastity (i.e. taking them in legal wedlock) not committing illegal sexual intercourse, nor taking them as girl-friends.
O you who believe! When believing women come to you as emigrants, examine them, Allâh knows best as to their Faith, then if you ascertain that they are true believers, send them not back to the disbelievers, they are not lawful (wives) for the disbelievers nor are the disbelievers lawful (husbands) for them. But give the disbelievers that (amount of money) which they have spent [as their Mahr] to them. And there will be no sin on you to marry them if you have paid their Mahr to them. Likewise hold not the disbelieving women as wives, and ask for (the return of) that which you have spent (as Mahr) and let them (the disbelievers, etc.) ask back for that which they have spent. That is the Judgement of Allâh. He judges between you. And Allâh is All-Knowing, All-Wise.
Yahya related to me from Malik from Yahya ibn Said that Said ibn al-Musayyab said, "It is forbidden to be married to a woman and her paternal or maternal aunt at the same time, and for a man to have intercourse with a female slave who is carrying another man's child."
Yahya related to me from Malik from Rabia ibn Abi Abd ar-Rahman that al-Qasim ibn Muhammad and Urwa ibn az-Zubayr said that a man who had four wives and then divorced one of them irrevocably, could marry straightaway if he wished, and he did not have to wait for the completion of her idda.
Yahya related to me from Malik from Abu'z-Zubayr al-Makki that a case was brought to Umar about a marriage which had only been witnessed by one man and one woman . He said, "This is a secret marriage and I do not permit it. Had I been the first to come upon it, I would have ordered them to be stoned."
The Prophet said about Hamza's daughter, "I am not legally permitted to marry her, as [Islamic] foster relations are treated like blood relations (in marital affairs). She is the daughter of my foster brother."
Yahya related to me from Malik from Ibn Shihab from Abdullah and Hasan, the sons of Muhammad ibn Ali ibn Abi Talib from their father, may Allah be pleased with him, that the Messenger of Allah forbade temporary marriage with women and the flesh of domestic donkeys on the Day of Khaybar.
Yahya related to me from Malik from Ibn Shihab from Urwa ibn az-Zubayr that Khawla ibn Hakim came to Umar ibn al-Khattab and said, ''Rabia ibn Umayya made a temporary marriage with a woman and she is pregnant by him.'' Umar ibn al-Khattab went out in dismay dragging his cloak, saying, "This temporary marriage, had I come across it, I would have ordered stoning and done away with it! "
How to Approach a Woman for Marriage
Hadith - Muwatta 28.1
Yahya related to me from Malik from Muhammad ibn Yahya ibn Habban from al-Araj from Abu Hurayra that the Messenger of Allah said, "Do not ask for a woman in marriage when another Muslim has already done so."
from Sheikh al Albaani
Each of them should fully carry out the duties and responsibilities with which Allah has obligated them toward the other...thus, the wife should not try to have all of the same rights as her husband, and the husband must never exploit the role of leadership and authority to which he has been assigned in the marriage relationship to oppress her, strike her or to be otherwise unfair to her.
Allah said: "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. [al baqarah:228]
Allah also said "Men are the protectors and maintainers of women, because Allâh has made one of them to excel the other, and because they spend (to support them) from their means. Therefore the righteous women are devoutly obedient (to Allâh and to their husbands), and guard in the husband's absence what Allâh orders them to guard (e.g. their chastity, their husband's property, etc.). As to those women on whose part you see illconduct, admonish them (first), (next), refuse to share their beds, (and last) beat them (lightly, if it is useful), but if they return to obedience, seek not against them means (of annoyance). Surely, Allâh is Ever Most High, Most Great. " [an-nisaa:34]
Mu'awiya ibn Haida radi Allahu anhu said "O rasulullah, what rights do our wives have over us?" Rasulullah salallahu alayhi wa sallam said "That you should feed them as you feed yourselves, clothe them as you clothe yourselves, never invoke ugliness upon them, (referring to the custom of the Arabs when they are angry they say 'May Allah make your face ugly) never strike them in the face, and in boycotting the marital bed, do not go outside of the house to sleep. How (could you do any of these things) after you have entered into one another, so do only that which is allowed with regard to her (for valid reasons). [ahmed/sahih]
In another hadith rasulullah sallallahu alayhi wa sallam said "The doers of justice will be on thrones of light at Allah's right Hand and both of Allah's hands are right hands- whose who were just in their ruling, with their families and in all that over which there were given authority." [Muslim]
When they both know and practice this, Allah subhana wa ta'ala grants them a good life and they will live for as long as they remain together- in the bliss of happiness. Allah said "Whoever works righteousness, man or woman, and has Faith, verily, to him will We give a new Life, a life that is good and pure, and We will bestow on such their reward according to the best of their actions." [an nahl:97]
A Pious Poor Pious Man is a Better Marriage Suitor than a Rich Man Who is Not Pious
A man passed by Allah's Apostle and Allah's Apostle asked (his companions) "What do you say about this (man)?" They replied, "If he asks for a lady's hand, he ought to be given her in marriage; and if he intercedes (for someone) his intercessor should be accepted; and if he speaks, he should be listened to." Allah's Apostle kept silent, and then a man from among the poor Muslims passed by, an Allah's Apostle asked (them) "What do you say about this man?" They replied, "If he asks for a lady's hand in marriage he does not deserve to be married, and he intercedes (for someone), his intercession should not be accepted; And if he speaks, he should not be listened to." Allah's Apostle (saaws) said, "This poor man is better than so many of the first as filling the earth."
Allah's Messenger (peace be upon him) said, 'When someone with whose religion and character you are satisfied asks your daughter in marriage, accede to his request. If you do not do so, there will be temptation on Earth and extensive corruption.' [Tirmidhi, Nasa'i and Ibn Majah transmitted it.]
Action Items for the uttaqun:
Remember... Allah, subhana watala, sees everything we do!
According to Quran and Sunnah
What is a wali?
Protector, Guardian, Supporter, Helper, Friend etc. [plural 'Auliyâ] see 33:17
The wali is the represention/mediator/guardian for women seeking marriage.
Who needs a Wali for marriage?
Men do not need a wali.
Women who have previously had marital relations with a man, can represent themselves and do not have to have a wali for seeking the husband, but they WILL need a wali for the actual marriage contract, i.e. Regardless, she still must not be alone with a non-mahram man, and she MAY of course, and is encouraged to, have a wali be involved to whatever level she is comfortable with. All of this is for her protection, so that she may be protected from inquiries by inappropriate men and possibly "fall in love" and regret it later. This way, the men's character is first screened for her, still leaving her with the ultimate decision.
Note that it may be argued that new reverts to Islam are as innocent as a virgin (since all sins are forgiven upon embracing Islam) and is recommended for new muslimahs have a wali for seeking marriage.
In all cases, the woman must consent to the marriage or the marriage can be ruled invalid. Virgins need not speak up to declare that they want a marriage; simply not speaking out against the marriage (her silence) is sufficient consent for a virgin.
Women who are virgins must have a wali when getting married.
If the woman does not have a male mahram relative, the Imam closest to her locality, of the same faith as her, becomes her wali.
If the wali is non-mahram, such as is the case with many new reverts to Islam, she should avoid ever being alone with him.
for more info:
Ummdat as-salik (The Reliance of the Traveller by Ahmad ibn Naqib al-Misri) Page 506 Book of Marriage section). This whole section deals with the subject of marriage and the conditions of marriage with a virgin and with a thayyibah (one who has been married before).
Risala Shafi'i page 225 section " A General Order of Prohibition in One Tradition Made Particular in Another" No: 328
Action Items for the uttaqun:
Remember... Allah, subhana watala, sees everything we do!