You Think You Know Islam’s Stance on Dating?

Dating does not exist among traditional Muslims where a man and a woman are in a one-on-one intimate relationship, spending time together alone, getting to know each other before marriage.


Credit: Muslim Blog

Islam does not prohibit women and men from talking to one another, but asks that they practice modesty and stay within the limits that Islamic law stipulates.

The culture of dating is not only a part of the West.

Today, religion for some is taken as a very casual concept. The beautiful religion of Islam is an integral way of life and teaches us about every stage in it. This includes teachings on the interaction between a male and a female, the halal way, which means something that is sanctioned as religiously proper for a Muslim.

In modern Western societies, it is unrealistic to try to avoid any and all interaction with members of the opposite sex. The issue between both sexes is a very controversial and sensitive issue; however, nobody seems to be taking it seriously.

Desires in Islam

Firstly, we should understand that Islam does recognize the notion of desires in both genders. Also, we are allowed to like someone but not to discover or begin a relationship with them through dating or making a relation without nikah (marriage).

A man and a woman are not allowed to be alone together, and any physical contact before marriage is forbidden. Because dating prevents us from being involved in it zina (adultery, fornication). Here, if a person does what will lead him to zina, he will be severely punished, so how painful shall the punishment be if he does it?

If a believing man has a desire to fulfill his manhood by getting married but he has no one in mind, his family or friends can help him get one suiting him, and this must be done as quickly as possible to prevent him from falling into illegal acts. This also applies to a girl who has reach an age suitable for marriage and is ready to get married.

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During and after the time of the Prophet Muhammad (Peace Be Upon Him), people lived in a society in which Islam dominated all aspects of life.

As a result, many marriages in the Muslim world are arranged in the same system although others have adopted the system traditionally due to the best influence of Islamic goodness. Each parent is responsible for the child’s growth until they get married and stand on their own.

In most countries, Islamic systems are considered backward especially for this marriage system due to a rapid modernization that has just happened in recent years. Many people do not know that Islam has its own way of uniting a man and a woman.

Islam has all these arrangements to avoid what has been proscribed by God. However, both couples cannot be forced to accept an arranged marriage and if a man likes someone (with the intention of marriage) that he knows from work, school, the neighborhood or an acquaintance.

Islam encourages Muslims to marry persons for whom they have special feelings and are comfortable with. Thus, Islam recommends that potential marriage partners see one another before proposing marriage. On this point, I would like to explain that seeing one another here does not mean dating; where a couple takes sometime “practicing.” This is haram (forbidden). But Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) recommended this seeing each other in other ways because that would enhance the bonding.

However the prospective couple shall not meet in private, this might lead to extremely unwanted situations, as Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said: “Whenever a man is alone with a woman, Satan is the third among them.”

In conclusion, Islam lays its social structure on the basis of a permanent relationship between a man and a woman in the form of a family.

Saira Rao is an editorial intern at Sharnoff’s Global Views. Read other articles by Saira.