SEXUAL RELATIONS BETWEEN SPOUSES
AN ISLAMIC PERSPECTIVE
Islam is a perfect religion. It covers all aspects of human life, including spouses’ sexual relations.
The husband and the wife choose their sexual activities according to the teaching of Quran and Ahadith and in mutual respect for one another. In this context, following points are important.
1. Sexual relations are for the pleasure of both the husband and the wife and for the procreation of children.
2. Nothing should be done that is offensive or harmful or unacceptable to your spouse. Each has a duty to be sexually available to the other, but neither has the right to disgust or injure the other, physically or psychologically.
3. Sexual pleasure is not limited to vaginal penetration, as it includes other forms of caressing, love making, such as kissing and fondling of various kinds.
4. With a few exceptions, the couple can engage in any activities that they like, in any manner and in any position. Allah (swt) rewards permissible activities as surely as he punishes sinful activities. It is in Quran - "Women are your fields. Go then into your fields as you please." ( Al-Baqara - 223).
5. It is often reported by sexual counselors in Muslim countries that some modern men and women impose on their spouse on the night of marriage like animals and expect that the spouse will carryout certain prohibited things they have seen on commercial sex websites. This kind of behavior often ruins the life of both the partners.
6. It is forbidden in Islam to have vaginal intercourse while a woman is menstruating (Al Baqara - 222).
During menstruation, women often have mood swings. The husbands should give due consideration to this natural phenomenon. However, a man and his menstruating wife can give one another pleasure so long as the woman's genitals are avoided. On such occasions, women should not remove their lower garment (pajama).
It is in Hadith - Narrated Ummul Momineen A'isha (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا): "The Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) used to recite the Quran with his head in my lap while I used to be in my periods (having menses). (Bukhari, Volume 9, Book 93, Number 639)"
It is in Hadith - Ummul Momineen Maimuna (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا) reported: "The Messenger of Allah (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) contacted and embraced his wives over the waist-wrapper when they were menstruating. (Muslim,Book 003, # 0579).
It is in Hadith - Ummul Momineen A'isha (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہا) reported: "When anyone amongst us (amongst the wives of the Prophet -صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم ) menstruated, the Messenger of Allah (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) asked her to tie a waist-wrapper over her (body) and then embraced her. (Muslim, Book 003, # 0577).
7. Anal intercourse (sodomy) is forbidden in Islam – Period. It is the worst kind of sexual practice, not done by even wild animals.
It is in Hadith - "Allah (سبحانہ و تعا لی) does not look at one who comes to his wife in her anus". (Nasa'i: Hasan Isnaad; Tirmidhi and Ibn Hibbaan).
It is in Hadith - "Cursed are those who come to their wives in their anuses." (Abu Dawood, Ahmad and others with hasan isnaad).
8. The Quran and the Sunnah are generally silent as to the various positions during fondling/love making. Most Ulema consider that it is up to the husband and wife, in love and mutual respect, to decide how to physically and emotionally express their sexual desires.
9. What goes on in bedroom, is a private matter between spouses and should not be discussed or revealed to other persons unless there is some necessity, such as health or safety.
It is in Hadith - Abu Hurairah (رضئ اللہ تعالی عنہ) narrates that the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) said this about people who reveal and discuss openly their sexual practices: "Do you know what those who do this are like? Those who do this are like a male and female devil who meet each other on the road and satisfy their desire while the people look on."
It is in Hadith - The Prophet (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) said "The most evil of the people to Allah (سبحانہ و تعا لی) on the Day of Resurrection will be the man who consorts with his wife and then publicizes her secret. (Muslim).
10. If the husband is absent from his wife because he is traveling for a legitimate purpose or other legitimate excuse, in this case the husband should try not to be absent from his wife for too long. The husband is obliged to treat his wife in a kind manner, which includes sex. The majority of scholars set the time limit beyond which it is not permissible for the husband to forgo intercourse at four months. However, Ulema agree that there is no time limit; the husband should have intercourse with his wife according to her emotional and physical requirements.
It is in Hadith - Imam Bukhari reported from ‘Abd-Allah ibn ‘Amr ibn al-‘Aas, who said: “The Messenger of Allah (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) said: ‘O ‘Abd-Allah, have I not heard that you fast all day and stand all night in prayer?’ I said, ‘Yes, O Messenger of Allah (صلى الله عليه و آله وسلم) .’ He said: ‘Do not do that. Fast and break your fast, stand in prayer and sleep. For your body has rights over you, your eyes have rights over you, and your wife has rights over you.’ (Bukhari)
In the commentary on this Hadith, it says: “The husband should not exhaust himself in worship to the extent that he becomes too weak to fulfill her rights by having intercourse with her and by earning a living.” (Fath al-Bari).
11. Touching and caressing the genetelia of partners by hands is allowed. In this case, hands and private parts should be pre-cleaned thoroughly to avoid infections.
12. On the question oral sex (genital contact by mouth), some Ulema consider it forbidden as sexual fluids are najis, while some Ulema consider it ‘tolerated’.
In this context, following facts are important.
(a) Partners who regularly perform oral sex on each other, have found to suffer from Oral (mouth) Cancer.
(b) It is confirmed that diseases like Chlamydia, Human Papillama-virus (HPV), Gonorrhea, Herpes, Hepatitis (Multiple strains), and other Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) including HIV can be cause of oral sex.
(c) In 2005, a research study at the College of Malmo in Sweden suggested that performing unprotected oral sex on a person infected with HPV increases the risk of Oral Cancer. The study found that 36 percent of the Cancer Patients had HPV compared to only 1 percent of the healthy control group
(d) Another recent study suggests a correlation between oral sex and Head and Neck Cancer. It is believed that this is due to the transmission of human papillama-virus (HPV) a virus that has been implicated in the majority of cervical cancers and which has been detected in throat cancer tissue in numerous studies.
(e) If the (Oral Sex) receiving partner has wounds or open sores on his/her genitals, or if the (Oral Sex) giving partner has wounds or open sores in his/her mouth, or bleeding gums, this poses an increased risk of STD transmission.
(f) Brushing the teeth, flossing, undergoing dental work, or eating crunchy foods such as chips/Burgers/French Fries /coke relatively soon before or after giving oral sex can also increase the risk of transmission, because all of these activities can cause small scratches in the lining of the mouth. These wounds, even when they are microscopic, increase the chances of contracting STDs that can be transmitted orally under these conditions. Such contact can also lead to more mundane infections from common bacteria and viruses found in, around, and secreted from the genital regions.
In view of the above facts and the great health hazard to human life, the Ulema may agree that oral sex of all kinds is forbidden in Islam.