Tuesday, February 21, 2006

~Can You have sexual act with your slaves and captives?~

InshaAllah I share an excerpt email that I ever composed for a Christian friend.

[in the name of Allah the Most Gracious and the Most Merciful]

Dear Mr Christian ….

May you are health… and alwasy in the state of highest spirit to searching of the truth …

From your profile you seem are very devote Christian.. Perhaps a missionary… as far as what I know…. Your people are very good trained to achieve the missions… very persistence [in preaching… approaching.. etc etc]..…

Never will the Jews or the Christians be satisfied with thee unless thou follow their form of religion……[Qur'an Al Baqaraah 2: 120]

But Since my friend has spoken about you, especially that she told me how she esteem and value you having the qualities of a devote and a respectable Christian.. So I hope you among one of Christian with all quality which Allah [God] has described in Holy Qur’an.

Strongest among men in enmity to the believers wilt thou find the Jews and Pagans; and nearest among them in love to the believers wilt thou find those who say, "We are Christians": because amongst these are men devoted to learningand men who have renounced the world, and they are not arrogant. [Qur’an Al Ma-idah 5:82]

Lets me recall and write here your question. You said…..

[Mr Christian]:
I have a question about a verse in the quran that i got in an email
[Mr Christian]:
"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]
[Mr Christian]:
does that mean you can actually have sexual acts with captives and slaves?

The short answer of that question is “yes”. Man can have sexual act with the captives and slaves they have.

If then you may ask … Why? How come?

The short answer of that is “because that what Allah says in Qur’an and that what our prophet Muhammad [peace be upon him] has taught us”

But I believe you will not satisfy with those short answers. You may wondering how Islam allow such of things…it seem Islam is immoral religion, support the slavery… etc etc..

This is very common perceptions of non Moslem about Islam. Some of them who call themselves as very honorable with high moral people, they use this verse to attack and mock Islam… astaghfirullah…

Actually to talk about this topic in this modern world where most of countries have been in agreement to refuse, to forbid any kind of slavery is seemed not relevent anymore….

I believe you asked me this question because you have some knowledge about slavery in this world. So that InshaAllah I will focus more to what the meaning of slave in Islam perspective.
Slavery had been appeared thousands year before Islam came. There were a lot of wars which cause some people being captured and then trapped in slavery to serve the people who won the battle.
People who had been trapped in slavery had to live miserable; no different like animal. [Even worse], they lost their freedom… they like human without wishes… their life fully belong to their master….

Slavery also happened at the glory of time in Jew and Christian people….Right ???

So, Islam came at the time when slavery was very acceptable, very common; as part of tradition, costume, life style…

At that time, in order to defense the religion… our prophet [peace and blessing of Allah be upon him] and his companions [peace be upon them] had to go war… If Allah enabled the Muslim to defeat unbeliever in wars, then the man may be killed, some being captured [man, woman and children]..

The leader/ruler of Moslem would decide what would do with those captivates….some were killed… some were released for ransoms… some who did not have any family to pay their ransoms they remained stay with Moslem as slaves… the Moslem ruler shared them out among Moslem people [who joined the battle].

May be you will ask…. if Islam indeed a honor, compassion and generous religion why they did not just let free all those captivates instead made them as slaves…?

The logic answer is…..

I think you agree…. This would sound very STUPID war strategy if Moslem people just let them free that way..…in fact in another side if Moslem was being defeated, the unbeliever would capture their people and made them slaves…

Above all it doesn’t mean Islam support slavery….

Islam limited the sources of slaves which existed before the mission of the Prophet [peace and blessing of Allah be upon him] to just one source, namely slavery resulting from capturing prisoners from among unbeliever, including woman and children.

So the reason why a person may be taken as a slave is his being an unbeliever and waging war against Allah and His Messenger.

A free woman can not become a slave unless she is an unbeliever woman from a state that at war with the Muslim and the Muslim have captured her.

[This opinion of the majority Islamic scholars – in interpretation of Holy Quran and the teaching of the prophet [peace and blessing of Allah be upon him]]…

wallahu alam bishshowab [Allah knows the best]

It’s rare nowadays to find slaves in above sense…that because Moslem has long since given up the obligation of jihad for the sake of Allah [I meant the jihad like what happened in the time of prophet and companions]

Nowadays… most of Islamic countries have signed the agreement that expressly forbids slavery. Even the king Faishal in year 1964 he announced very strict rule no slavery in Saudi Arabia. There was very big manumission in all over Saudi….even the king used kingdom money to pay the manumission of slaves…

Based on that …nowadays….Moslem has to careful in examining any case where people are bought and sold as slaves….

Before I come to the main topic why it’s allowed for Moslem man to have intimate with their slaves…. Lets me share you how Moslem should treat their slaves…

Allah and the prophet [Peace and the blessing of Allah be upon him] order Moslem to treat their slaves nicely. Even, having good attitude toward slaves is considered as one of the best righteous deeds….

It is not righteousness that ye turn your faces Towards east or West; but it is righteousness- to believe in Allah and the Last Day, and the Angels, and the Book, and the Messengers; to spend of your substance, out of love for Him, for your kin, for orphans, for the needy, for the wayfarer, for those who ask, and for the ransom of slaves; to be steadfast in prayer, and practice regular charity; to fulfil the contracts which ye have made; and to be firm and patient, in pain (or suffering) and adversity, and throughout all periods of panic. Such are the people of truth, the Allah.fearing. [Qur'an Al Baqaarah 2: 177]

I asked the Prophet, "What is the best deed?" He replied, "To believe in Allah and to fight for His cause."

I then asked, "What is the best kind of manumission (of slaves)?" He replied, "The manumission of the most expensive slave and the most beloved by his master." I said, "If I cannot afford to do that?" He said, "Help the weak or do good for a person who cannot work for himself."

I said, "If I cannot do that?" He said, "Refrain from harming others for this will be regarded as a charitable deed for your own good." [Sahih Al-Bukhari Hadith 3.694 Narrated by Abu Dhar]

Here some of the teaching our prophet [peace and the blessing of Allah upon him] how we should treat slaves:

Allah's Apostle said, "He who has a slave-girl and educates and treats her nicely and then manumits and marries her, will get a double reward." [Sahih Al-Bukhari Hadith 3.720, Narrated by Abu Musa]

I saw Abu Dhar Al-Ghifari wearing a cloak, and his slave, too, was wearing a cloak. We asked him about that (i.e. how both were wearing similar cloaks). He replied, "Once I abused a man and he complained of me to the Prophet. The Prophet asked me, 'Did you abuse him by slighting his mother?' He added, 'Your slaves are your brethren upon whom Allah has given you authority. So, if one has one's brethren under one's control, one should feed them with the like of what one eats and clothe them with the like of what one wears. You should not overburden them with what they cannot bear, and if you do so, help them (in their hard job).' " [Sahih Al-Bukhari Hadith 3.721, Narrated by Al Marur bin Suwaid]

The Prophet said, "When your servant brings your meals to you then if he does not let him sit and share the meals, then he should at least give him a mouthful or two mouthfuls of that meal or a meal or two meals, as he has prepared it." [Sahih Al-Bukhari HadithHadith 3.732, Narrated byAbu Huraira]

The Prophet said, "If somebody fights (or beats somebody) then he should avoid the face." [Sahih Al-Bukhari HadithHadith 3.734, Narrated byAbu Huraira]

Islam even elevates the value of believer slave higher than unbeliever free people…

Do not marry unbelieving women (idolaters), until they believe: A slave woman who believes is better than an unbelieving woman, even though she allures you. Nor marry (your girls) to unbelievers until they believe: A man slave who believes is better than an unbeliever, even though he allures you. Unbelievers do (but) beckon you to the Fire. But Allah beckons by His Grace to the Garden (of bliss) and forgiveness, a nd makes His Signs clear to mankind: That they may celebrate His praise. [Qur'an Al Baqaarah 2: 221]

Slaves is one of them who have right accept alms to help them free from any bondage,…
Alms are for the poor and the needy, and those employed to administer the (funds); for those whose hearts have been (recently) reconciled (to Truth); for those in bondage and in debt; in the cause of Allah. and for the wayfarer: (thus is it) ordained by Allah, and Allah is full of knowledge and wisdom. [Qur'an At Taubah 9:60]

………. if any of your slaves ask for a deed in writing (to enable them to earn their freedom for a certain sum), give them such a deed if ye know any good in them: yea, give them something yourselves out of the means which Allah has given to you. [Qur'an An Nuur 24:33]

Islam does not support slavery, the otherwise Islam is a religion that tries to dismiss slavery in this world.

The Prophet said, "Whoever frees a Muslim slave, Allah will save all the parts of his body from the (Hell) Fire as he has freed the body-parts of the slave." [Sahih Al-Bukhari Hadith 3.693, Narrated byAbu Huraira]

Al-Bara' reported: "A man came to the Prophet, upon whom be peace, and said to him: 'Guide me to a deed that makes me close to Heaven and far from Hell.' The Prophet, upon whom be peace, said: 'Free a person and redeem a slave.' [Fiqh-us-Sunnah, Fiqh 3.67]

Any slaves woman who have been freed can chose to stay with her husband [her husband is a slave] or leave him…

I bought Buraira but her masters put the condition that her Wala' would be for them. I told the Prophet about it. He said (to me),"Manumit her as her Wala' will be for the one who pays the price." So, I manumitted her. The Prophet called Buraira and gave her the option of either staying with her husband or leaving him.

She said, "Even if he gave me so much money, I would not stay with him," and so she preferred her freedom to her husband. [Sahih Al-Bukhari HadithHadith 3.713, Narrated byAisha]

A woman slave who gives birth to a child by her master, not allowed to be sold anymore…

Malik related to me from Nafi from Abdullah ibn Umar that Umar ibn al-Khattab said, "If a slave-girl gives birth to a child by her master, he must not sell her, give her away, or bequeath her. He enjoys her and when he dies she is free ." [Al-Muwatta Hadith 38.6]

A woman slave who gives birth to a child by her master, her child will have same status/right/position like other master’s child… You may not believe if in the time of Abassiyah Dynasty….most of the khalifah [ruler/kings] were born from slave women /concubines… [You can check it…inshaAllah]…
The Prophet (peace be upon him) decided regarding one who was treated as a member of a family after the death of his father, to whom he was attributed when the heirs said he was one of them, that if he was the child of a slave-woman whom the father owned when he had intercourse with her, he was included among those who sought his inclusion, but received none of the inheritance which was previously divided; he, however, received his portion of the inheritance which had not already been divided; but if the father to whom he was attributed had disowned him, he was not joined to the heirs.

If he was a child of a slave-woman whom the father did not possess or of a free woman with whom he had illicit intercourse, he was not joined to the heirs and did not inherit even if the one to whom he was attributed is the one who claimed paternity, since he was a child of fornication whether his mother was free or a slave. [Sunan of Abu-Dawood Hadith 2258, Narrated byAbdullah ibn Amr ibn al-'As]

'Utba bin Abi Waqqas said to his brother Sa'd bin Abi Waqqas, "The son of the slave girl of Zam'a is from me, so take him into your custody." So in the year of Conquest of Mecca, Sa'd took him and said. (This is) my brother's son whom my brother has asked me to take into my custody."

'Abd bin Zam'a got up before him and said, (He is) my brother and the son of the slave girl of my father, and was born on my father's bed." So they both submitted their case before Allah's Apostle. Sa'd said, "O Allah's Apostle! This boy is the son of my brother and he entrusted him to me."

'Abd bin Zam'a said, "This boy is my brother and the son of the slave girl of my father, and was born on the bed of my father." Allah's Apostle said, "The boy is for you, O 'Abd bin Zam'a!" Then Allah's Apostle further said, "The child is for the owner of the bed, and the stone is for the adulterer." [Sahih Al-Bukhari Hadith 9.293, Narrated byAisha]

Islam made setting of freeing slaves as obligation in the case of some kinds of expiation (kafaarah), such as

The expiation because have sexual intercourse with my wife on Ramadan (while fasting)
A man came to the Prophet and said, "I had sexual intercourse with my wife on Ramadan (while fasting)." he Prophet asked him, "Can you afford to manumit a slave?"

He replied in the negative. The Prophet asked him, "Can you fast for two successive months?"
He replied in the negative.
He asked him, "Can you afford to feed sixty poor persons?" He replied in the negative.
(Abu Huraira added): Then a basket full of dates was brought to the Prophet and he said (to that man), "Feed (poor people) with this by way of atonement." He said, "(Should I feed it) to poorer people than we? There is no poorer house than ours between its (Medina's) mountains." The Prophet said, "Then feed your family with it." [Sahih Al-Bukhari Hadith 3.158, Narrated byAbu Huraira]
The expiation for accidental killing,

Never should a believer kill a believer; but (If it so happens) by mistake, (Compensation is due): If one (so) kills a believer, it is ordained that he should free a believing slave, and pay compensation to the deceased's family, unless they remit it freely. If the deceased belonged to a people at war with you, and he was a believer, the freeing of a believing slave (Is enough). If he belonged to a people with whom ye have treaty of Mutual alliance,compensation should be paid to his family, and a believing slave be freed. For those who find this beyond their means, (is prescribed) a fast for two months running: by way of repentance to Allah.for Allah hath all knowledge and all wisdom. [Qur'an An Nisaa' 4:92]

The expiation for zihaar (a jaahili form of divorce in which a man said to his wife, “You are to me as my mother’s back”),

But those who divorce their wives by Zihaar, then wish to go back on the words they uttered,- (It is ordained that such a one) should free a slave before they touch each other: Thus are ye admonished to perform: and Allah is well-acquainted with (all) that ye do. [Qur'an Al Mujaadilah 58:3]

The expiation for breaking oaths.

Allah will not call you to account for what is futile in your oaths, but He will call you to account for your deliberate oaths: for expiation, feed ten indigent persons, on a scale of the average for the food of your families; or clothe them; or give a slave his freedom. If that is beyond your means, fast for three days. That is the expiation for the oaths ye have sworn. But keep to your oaths. Thus doth Allah make clear to you His signs, that ye may be grateful. [Qur'an Al Maa'idah 5:89]

Let’s now move to main topic regarding your question about it being permissible for a master to be intimate with his slave woman,

Like I have told you earlier …the short answer of this question is that because Allaah [God] has permitted it.

Who abstain from sex, Except with those joined to them in the marriage bond, or (the captives) whom their right hands possess,- for (in their case) they are free from blame, [ Qur'an Al Mu'minuun 23: 6-6]

And those who guard their chastity, Except with their wives and the (captives) whom their right hands possess,- for (then) they are not to be blamed, [Qur'an Al Ma'aarij 29-30]

This slave woman has to belong to him, either because he has paid money to buy her or he has fought for the sake of Allaah [and acquired her among the war booty]. And also this slave woman has not been given by her master in marriage to another man to whom she is still married.

These slaves woman only belong to their master, the master are not allowed to share their slave women [that they have intimated] to other people…..nor force them into the prostitution…even not allowed to share them to his own sons….

…..But force not your maids to prostitution when they desire chastity, in order that ye may make a gain in the goods of this life….. [Qur'an An Nuur 24:33]

Yahya related to me from Malik that he had heard that Umar ibn al-Khattab gave his son a slave-girl and said, "Do not touch her, for I have uncovered her." [Al-Muwatta Hadith Hadith 28.36]

Yahya related to me from Malik from Yahya ibn Said that Abu Nahshal ibn al-Aswad said to al-Qasim ibn Muhammad, "I saw a slave-girl of mine uncovered in the moonlight, and so I sat on her as a man sits on a woman. She said that she was menstruating, so I stood up and have not gone near her after that. Can I give her to my son to have intercourse with?" Al-Qasim forbade that. [Al-Muwatta Hadith Hadith 28.37]

All above explanations… give the impression that actually the teaching of Islam was trying to dismiss slavery step by step…. Allah often teaches us by this ways [step by step….by wisdom and compassion]….. All those rules are available in The Qur’an and The hadith, it is showing us Islam indeed a comprehensive religion…

I don’t hink there are any religions… books… which elevate the status and treat slaves like Islam do…

Wallahu alam bishshowab…

I end the topic of slaves in Islam here….

May all above explanation can give you some outlines about the position of slaves in Islam….. And May they can give you better understanding about the truth teaching of Islam…

Sorry if it becomes very big explanations …because I tried my best to provide valid evidences, arguments from the Qur’an and sahih hadist [valid saying prophet Muhammad sallahu alaihi wassalam]. I pray may they can help you to think objectively…

And those who strive in Our (cause),- We will certainly guide them to our Paths: For verily Allah is with those who do right [Qur’an Al ‘Ankabuut 29:69]

Finally I invite you to the light of Islam…

Invite (all) to the Way of thy Lord with wisdom and beautiful preaching; and argue with them in ways that are best and most gracious: for thy Lord knoweth best, who have strayed from His Path, and who receive guidance. [Qur'an Al An Nahl 16:125]

But it’s all up to you….. I only convey the messages

If then they run away, We have not sent thee as a guard over them. Thy duty is but to convey (the Message). And truly, when We give man a taste of a Mercy from Ourselves, he doth exult thereat, but when some ill happens to him, on account of the deeds which his hands have sent forth, truly then is man ungrateful! [Qur'an Asy Syuuraa 42:48]

No compulsion to accept Islam….

Let there be no compulsion in religion: Truth stands out clear from Error: whoever rejects evil and believes in Allah hath grasped the most trustworthy hand-hold, that never breaks. And Allah heareth and knoweth all things. [Qur'an Al Baqarah 2:256]

But I just can remind you that

The parable of those who reject their Lord is that their works are as ashes, on which the wind blows furiously on a tempestuous day: No power have they over aught that they have earned: that is the straying far, far (from the goal). [Qur'an Ibrahim 14:18]

May Allah open your heart to the light of Islam…

It is true thou wilt not be able to guide every one, whom thou lovest; but Allaah guides those whom He will and He knows best those who receive guidance. [Qur'an Al Qashash 28:56]

…..Verily never will Allaah change the condition of a people until they change it themselves (with their own souls). But when (once) Allaah willeth a people's punishment, there can be no turning it back, nor will they find, besides Him, any to protect. [Qur'an Ar Ra'du 13:11]

"…… Allaah will never change the grace which He hath bestowed on a people until they change what is in their (own) souls: and verily Allaah is He Who heareth and knoweth (all things)." [Qur'an Al Anfaal 8:53]

Please forgive me if I said something that offense you in giving explanation…. If there are any errors …they all come from me due of my shallowness… if there are the truth, they are all come from Allah the Almighty One…

wallahu alam bishshowab [Allah knows the best]

Subhanakallahumma wabihamdika ashadu ala ilaha illa anta astaghfiruka wa atubu ilaika
Bandung 22 Maret 2005
Rytha Nur’aini

Those whom Allah (in His plan) willeth to guide,- He openeth their breast to Islam; those whom He willeth to leave straying,- He maketh their breast close and constricted, as if they had to climb up to the skies: thus doth Allah (heap) the penalty on those who refuse to believe. This is the way of thy Lord, leading straight: We have detailed the signs for those who receive admonition. For them will be a home of peace in the presence of their Lord: He will be their friend, because they practised (righteousness). [Qur’an Al An’aam 6 :125-127]


Saquib 4:44 PM  

Assalam-o-alikum dear brother
ALthough you have tried to answer in the best way you can with all your good intentions, but i feel you have not done justice to such a delicate and crucial issue. You really need to emphasize on one point which i think u didnt, and that is that all such customs of treating slaves as animals and having sex with them or even kill them whenever you like were the customs of that society at that time. these were such deep rooted traditions that they were the part of the norms of the society and novone at that time see anything wromg in it. therfore its not like that Islam urged pepole to use slaves for their own pleasure rather Islam rather gradually demolishes that custom by giving directives.
keeping in view what the social customs were at the time, it should be understood that sexual intercourse with one's slave was considered part of the norm. The slaves too saw nothing wrong in this.

In fact, Before the advent of Islam the slaves were considered no more than their master's possessions and therefore absolutely anything could be done with them.
In other words, they could even take their slaves' lives when and as they pleased.
Islam removed such vices and raised them to the position of fellow humans with similar rights. However, as long as slavery was not completely removed, having sexual relations remained part of the master-slave relationship.

Rytha Nur'aini 9:23 PM  


Assallammu'alaikum warohmatullahi wabarokatuh

Jazakallah khair for your addition.... Indeed Islam come to bring mercy to anyone... There are many example from Rasulullah how to treat the slaves...

fi amanAllah