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Ramadan 2014

She's Only a Friend

In today’s society an increasing number of young Muslims are having relationships with members of the opposite sex that are clearly outside the limits set by Islam. "She is only a friend" is the explanation often given, when men are asked with regards to forming relationships with a female. The question arises that are Muslim men allowed to be friends with the opposite sex? What is the Islamic point of view with regards to such friendships?

Holy Prophet (S.A.W) has stated that “whenever two strangers of the opposite gender are alone with each other, Satan becomes the third one between them.” [At-Tirmidhi]

From an Islamic point of view, a male and female who are Ghair Mehram (marriageable to each other) are not allowed to form friendships. Islam suggests segregation between genders and discourages environment where free mixing could take place. This is to eliminate the starting cause of extramarital relationship to develop. The Holy Quran says; “And do not even go near unlawful sex (adultery). Verily, it is an act of lewdness and is the most evil way” (Translation taken from Irfan ul Quran, Surah Bani Israil 17: Ayah 32).

There are many AHadith which mention the price one has to pay for such relationships. Only two are mentioned below.

It has been reported that “the person who touches a strange woman with lust, on the day of resurrection his hands will be shackled to his neck. If he kissed her, his lips will be cut off and thrown in the fire of Hell. If he committed adultery then his thighs will bear witness to it and testify against him on the Day of Qiyamah (judgement day). " [Kitâb-ul-Kaba'ir]

On the night of Mirage (Ascension), Holy Prophet (S.A.W) mentioned an event and said; "We walked until we came to something that looked like an oven. Its top section was narrow and the inside was broad. From it sounds of screaming and noise was heard." Rasoolallah (S.A.W) further says: "We looked inside and we saw naked men and women. We also saw flames from beneath them. When these flames scorched them, they screamed." I asked Jibra'îl (A.S): "Who are these people?" He replied, “These are the males and females who committed the grave act of Zina (adultery). This will be their punishment till the day of Qiyamah (judgement day)." [Bukhari]

It becomes apparent that having extramarital relationships is forbidden. All those Muslims who already have taken this path need to re-evaluate their practise and weigh-up the pleasures it holds against its punishment. It doesn’t take a genius to work out that the price is too great to pay for a bit of pleasure, so we need to repent today before it is too late. Allah (S.W.T) is all Merciful, and Forgiving.