Masturbation-Islamic science perspective
Posted by rainier on Wednesday, January 29, 2003


Masturbation - A Disastrous Problem Faced by the Youth
by Moulana Abdullah Ismail

(PART 1) The Role of Youth, The Evil Planning of the Enemies of Allah, The Effect thereof, Masturbation - Fast Spreading, Vile act, The Ruling Regarding Masturbation, Proofs from the Quraan, Proofs from the Ahaadeeth, Sayings of Our Pious Predecessors, The Harms of Masturbation, Shar'ee (Religious) Harms, Physical Harms, Psychological and Social Harms, A Fatwaa (Shar'ee Ruling) on Masturbation

Compiler's Note (From the Print Edition)
Unless otherwise stated, most of the subject matter contained in this booklet has been taken from an Arabic booklet entitled Mushkilah fi Tariqatis Shabaab, (A Difficulty in the way of the Youth), prepared by Sheikh Salih At-Tameemy. May Allah Ta'aala accept it and make it a means of guidance and salvation for the whole Ummah in both the worlds. Ameen.

All praises are only for Allah. We praise Him, seek His Help and beseech Him to forgive us. We seek His Protection from the evils of our carnal selves and bad actions. None can lead astray the one whom He guides and none can guide the one whom He leads astray. We bear witness that none is worthy of worship except Allah, the One Who has no partner and Muhammed sallallahu alaihi wasallam is His slave and messenger.

The Importance of Youth
In all the phases of history, youth were the secret strength of their nations, the pillars of their progress, the cause of their honour and esteem, the tools of their future and the most important asset and useful capital in their possession. This is due to the fact that the youth are known for their spirit of courage, boldness and dedication, their purity of mind and intellect and their excess power and strength. These factors make them more capable to construct, lead and serve a nation.

The Role of Youth
In the early period of Islam, the youth played an important role in carrying and spreading the message of Islam to all the regions of the world. They also played a great role in the leadership of armies, the conquering of cities, the hoisting of the flag of Tauheed (the Oneness of Allah) and carrying the torch of hidayah (guidance). This role will always be played by the youth as long as the Muslim Ummah exists.

The Evil Planning of the Enemies of Allah
The enemies of Allah know the importance of the youth and the role they play in the construction of a nation. Hence, they have schemed various ways to eliminate and destroy this asset, to poison the thinking and minds of the youth and to plant the spirit of unsteadiness and moral depravity in their lives. Some of the despicable ways in which they achieve their objectives are as follows:

To employ every possible means to stimulate and excite the natural impulse in man through:-
colourful, captivating and stimulating pictorial illustrations and images;
female and male actors and sport-players whom the masses have accepted in order to frame their minds in such a manner that they can be easily influenced and to give them by means of these actors and sport-players a pattern and model of life;
magazines which deal with women employed in the field of fashion, art, cinemas, sports and beauty;
senseless music which is directed to degrade man;
collections of poetry which decreases the soul to sense its' natural feelings;
imaginary and fictitious love stories and narratives sold on street-corners; and
movies and films which the agents of the Jews produce to destroy the good-character of people so that it could become easy for them to rule the world.

To place imaginative obstacles and impediments on the straight path at a time when shaytaan is also working hard to stimulate the passion of man. To place social, individual, mental and economical barriers to impress upon the youth that the affair of marriage is a difficult matter. This second method of the enemies of Islam is, in reality, a closure of the legal doors whereby a person could satisfy his natural desires.

The Result
When the desire and passion of man is stirred-up due to various influencing factors, it ventures to search for the correct path for satisfaction. Instead of finding the door open it finds it closed. Consequently, it chooses the corrupted and distorted paths. Here it finds the doors wide open.

The Effect of the Evil Planning of the Enemy
The enemies of Allah have been successful to a considerable extent in achieving their objectives. They have extracted from the Muslim Ummah such youth whose primary concern is the fulfilment of carnal appetite. These youth have surrendered to the attack of the enemies. Their greatest desire is to enter into the world of arts, sports and fashion. They have been nurtured from childhood with lust, passion and lowly-desires. When they think, they think of evil. The beating of their heart is also for evil. They live, sleep and eat yearning for vice. These youth have thus only excelled in sports, music and hair styling. When the condition of the youth has become such then the fall of the Ummah and the collapse of society is evident.

Masturbation - A Fast Spreading, Vile Act
Amongst the distorted ways towards which the youth have resorted to satisfy their lust is masturbation - a fast spreading, vile act. This vile act has become common amongst a large sector of youth. Many young boys and girls have become entrapped in the snare of masturbation. Hence, it is necessary to explain the law of Islam with regard to this evil act, to list its harms and disastrous consequences and to prescribe some medicine and treatment to root-out this shameful act. These are a few words before you, O Beloved Reader! so that it could become a brick in the building of Islamic Knowledge and a step on the straight path. May Allah grant us the ability to benefit from it. Aameen.

The Ruling Regarding Masturbation is that it is Haraam (Unlawful)
This is the ruling of the 4 schools of thought viz. Malikiyah, Shafi'eyah and Hanafiyah and one riwayah (narration) from Imaam Ahmed. They have drawn their conclusions from the following proofs:-

Proofs from the Quraan
Allah Ta'aala says: "And those who guard their private parts save from their wives and those (slave-girls) which their right-hands own - so there is no blame upon them. Then whoever seeks beyond that (which is lawful), they are the transgressors." (Surah Al Mu'minoon : Verse 5 & 6)

The intended meaning of these aayat is clear. Allah Ta'aala has praised the believers for guarding their private parts from that which He has made forbidden upon them. Allah has permitted them to approach their wives and slave-girls. Thereafter, these Words of Allah Ta'aala follow:- Whoever seeks beyond that which is lawful are oppressors who overstep from halaal (permitted) towards haraam (prohibited).

Hafiz Ibne Katheer Rahmatullah alaihi writes: "Imaam Shaafie Rahmatullah alaihi and those who have agreed with him have concluded that masturbation is haraam from this aayah." He says: "Masturbation is excluded from these two types which Allah has made halaal, viz. wives and slave-girls."

Similarly, these Fuqahaa (Jurists) have drawn their conclusion from the following aayah: "And those who do not find the means to marry should remain chaste until Allah gives them resources by His Grace." (Surah Al Mu'minoon : Verse 32)

This aayah shows masturbation to be haraam because of two reasons: Firstly: In this aayah Allah Ta'aala has given the command of chastity and, according to the principles of fiqh, a command (an imperative) denotes wujoob (incumbency, obligation). Hence to remain chaste is wajib (compulsory) and wherever chastity is wajib it becomes wajib to refrain from that which is contrary to it, for example, adultery, fornication, and sodomy. This is due to the fact that obligatory chastity will not materialize except by complete refrainment from all that which is contrary to chastity.
Secondly, In this aayah Allah Ta'aala has made chastity obligatory on those who are unable to execute the command of nikah. Here Allah Ta'aala has not determined any connection or link between marriage and chastity. Hence, this demands that masturbation should be haraam. And if assuming, it was permissible, then Allah Ta'aala would have mentioned it at this point because this was the place of its explanation. The silence maintained by Allah Ta'aala with regards to it at a place which requires its explanation, denotes that masturbation is haraam.

Imaam Qurtubi Rahmatullah alaihi has written in the tafseer of this aayah: "And when Allah Ta'aala has not determined any order between nikah and chastity, then this shows that besides these two, everything else is haraam. However, this hurmat (unlawfulness) does not include slave-girls because another command of the Quraan makes them mubaah (permissible), viz. "That which the right-hands earn (i.e. slave girls)." Hence in this matter an addition of slave-girl has come. Masturbation, however still remains haraam."
"Those who seek beyond this (i.e wives and slave girls] are transgressors." (Surah Ma'aarij : Verse 31)
Under the tafseer of this aayah, Qadhi Thanaullah Paani Patti writes: "Imaam Baghawi has deduced from this aayat that masturbation is haraam."

Proofs from the Ahaadeeth
1. Similarly, the Fuqahaa have drawn their conclusion from a hadeeth reported by Abdullah bin Mas'ud Radiallahu anhu in Bukhari and Muslim. He says that Rasulullah sallallahu alaihi wasallam said: "O group of youth! Whoever from amongst you can marry should do so because it keeps the gaze low and it protects the private parts. And he who cannot marry should make it compulsory upon himself to fast because it breaks lust." (Bukhari : vol.6, pg.117 ; Muslim: vol.10, pg.172)

Nabi sallallahu alaihi wasallam has directed the person who is incapable of bearing the burden of nikah towards saum (fasting). If assuming, masturbation was permissible Rasulullah sallallahu alaihi wasallam would have mentioned it at this point. Rasulullah sallallahu alaihi wasallam however, maintained silence. Hence, this indicates that masturbation is haraam because the maintaining of silence at the place of explanation gives the benefit of restriction.

2. Some of the fuqahaa have drawn their conclusion from a narration reported by Hasan bin Arfah that Nabi sallallahu alaihi wasallam said: "Seven persons are such that Allah will not look at them on the Day of Qiyaamah nor will He purify them nor will He include them amongst the learned and Allah will enter them into Jahannum. They will enter Jahannum first except for those who repent. As for those who repent Allah will accept their repentence.

A person who masturbates.
A person who performs the act of sodomy.
The erson upon whom the act of sodomy is performed.
A perpetual drunkard
The person who hits his parents so much so that they appeal for help.
The person who harms his neighbours so much so that they curse him.
The person who commits adultery with his neighbour's wife." (Ibn Katheer: vol.5, pg.458)

3. Hadhrat Anas Radiallahu anhu narrates that Rasulullah sallallahu alaihi wasallam said: "The person who performs nikaah with his hands (i.e. he masturbates) is cursed." (Tasfseer Mazhari: vol.12, pg.94)

Sayings of our Pious Predecessors with Regard to Masturbation
Sa'eed bin Jubair Radiallahu anhu says: "Allah Ta'aala will inflict a punishment on a group of people because they played with their private parts."
Attaa Rahmatullah alaihi says: "Some people will be resurrected in such a condition that their hands will be pregnant, I think they are those who masturbate."

The Harms of Masturbation
Every harm is the result of sins. Hence, the harms of masturbation proves that it is a sin. Why should it not be so when sins are the root of misfortune and the key to all vices. Ibne Qayyim Rahmatullah alaihi says: "The reason for every loss, misfortune and evil in this world and the hereafter is sin and opposing the Laws and Commands of Allah Ta'aala. Moreover, sin destroys bounties and blessings as fire burns wood. It is possible to divide the harms of this vile act as follows:

Shar'i (Religious) Harms

The Shar'ee harms are many. Some of them are as follows: a decrease in taufeeq (success granted by Allah Ta'aala); corrupt ideas; hard-heardtedness, an aversion towards people, cheerlessness in the heart and to be deprived of knowledge. The greatest spiritual harm caused by this evil act is the inability to remain steadfast on Deen. As long as a person is entangled in this evil habit, shaytaan will gradually remove him from his friends until he dislikes their company. Thereafter, shaytaan will draw him into the mud of desires until he is deprived altogether from remaining steadfast on Deen.

How many youth have been deprived of Tahajjud, fasting, recitation of the Quraan, acquiring knowledge, associating with friends, etc. because of the commission of this evil. A person who commits this sin becomes weak in front of shaytaan and his nafs-e-ammarah (lowly-self) instructs him to do evil. Hence, he will not have the ability to oppose his nafs in order to carry out the Commands of Allah Ta'aala. Hasan Basri Rahmatullah alaihi has said: "A person deprives himself of performing Tahajjud by committing sins."

Moreover, masturbation causes the bladder to become weak. Consequently, involuntary urinal and seminal discharges occur from the private parts. This causes complications in wudhu, salaah and cleanliness of the clothes.

Physical Harms
Undoubtedly, masturbation causes physical harm - although some have exaggerated its harms - nevertheless, medical science has proven that masturbation is a cause of a number of diseases. Amongst them are:
It weakens the sexual organs and creates partial looseness in it.
It weakens the nerves generally - a result of the exertion caused by this action.
It affects the growth of the limbs especially the outer part of the urethra (duct through which urine is discharged from the bladder and the testicles). Hence it does not reach the limit of it's normal growth.
It creates seminal (spermatic) inflammation in the testicles which causes quick ejaculation of sperm.
It causes pain in the vertebra column, the spinal column from which semen is ejaculated. This pain creates crookedness and twisting in the back.
It causes some limbs like the legs to shake and shiver.
It creates weakness in the cerebral glands of the brain which in turn weakens the power of perception and reason. Similarly, it leads to the weakness of memory.
It weakens the eye-sight and reduces it's normal limit of vision.
It causes a person to become old before time.
It weakens the very delicate and fine nerves and veins of the sexual organs resulting in sexual impotency.
It causes an excessive loss of sperm by way of nocturnal emission (wet dreams).
It decreases the natural resistance of the body.
It causes harm to the four principal organs in the body viz. the heart, brain, liver and stomach.
It decreases the natural animal heat in the body, heat which strengthens the soul and body.
It causes an excessive loss of blood. Remember it takes 80 drops of blood to produce one drop of sperm.
It weakens the bladder.

Psychological and Social Harms
The psychologists say: "Here the awareness of a misdeed and the feeling of a sin occurs to those youth who practice this vile act in such a way that within themselves there is struggle between the desire to practice this vile act and the remorseful feeling of a sin."
Excessive practice of this vile act leads to cowardice, an increase in nervous agitation, no confidence in oneself, overwhelming disgrace, a decrease in the urge to study and desire towards isolation and introversion.
Similarly, excessive practice of this evil act leads towards it's addiction and attachment. Instead of practising it to rid oneself of an irresistible desire or to unleash a violent eruption of desire within oneself a person does it as a habit to attain and satisfy his carnal appetite and desire. Ibn Qayyim Rahmatullah alaihi has said: "Many sinners sin without deriving any pleasure from it and without any urge to do it except that they experience pain in quitting it."

A Fatwa (Shari'i Ruling) on Masturbation
Question: Is masturbation equal to zinaa (adultery) in sin? If a person masturbates while fasting does his fast break? Some people say that masturbation is not a sin. Please explain, you will be rewarded.

Answer: To masturbate is a grave sin. Such a person has been cursed in the hadeeth. It breaks the fast. To keep a qadhaa fast (another fast in place of the broken one) is Waajib, However, there is no kaffaraah (atonement). It is recorded in Sharhut Tanweer that masturbation breaks the fast.

Home - Quran & HadithCharity - Family & HealthIslamMiscellaneous – Matrimonials

Human Rights - Women – Newscenter – BoycottChechnya – Palestine - Links