Islamic View on the Concept of Dating “A One-On-One Intimate Relationship”


In the modern world we live today, Islam is experiencing issues that normally go within its Ummah regardless of its rulings. This article is a reminder to my fellow brothers and sisters, of the greatest sin we are accustomed to, yet we are aware of its consequence. It is a sin against which most youth shall normally turn their backs when one tries to put advice against it. It is a sin a young man will be laughed at, or be called sorts of backward names by his fellows when he tries to advice against it. It is the only sin for which a large number will be driven into hellfire without any doubt if they die with it as one of their deeds.

The most understandable way which Allah (swt) uses to prohibit something without getting us to ask for evidence is when He (swt) says: “Laa…” meaning “Do not…”. Allah (swt) has prohibited being close to zinaa “fornication” using “Laa”, to prevent us from being involved in it (zinaa). Here, if a person does what will lead him to zinaa, he will be severely punished, so how painful shall the punishment be if he does it (zinaa)? Nowadays and since long time ago, it has become a condition that if a man doesn’t date a woman for sometime before getting married, the marriage will not be successful. Dating is when a man and a woman (or boy/girl) are in a one-on-one intimate relationship, spending time together alone, getting to know each other in a very deep way before marriage.

A man and a woman are not allowed to be alone together, and any physical contact before marriage is forbidden. Hence, Dating is not permitted in Islam.

In Qur’an 5:5, Allah (swt) has forbidden the relationship between a boy and a girl/a man and a woman if they are not married:

“(Lawful to you in marriage) are pure women from the believers and pure women from those who were given the Scripture (Jews and Christians) before your time, when you have given their due Mahr (bridal-money given by the husband to his wife at the time of marriage), desiring purity (i.e. taking them in legal wedlock) not committing illegal sexual intercourse, nor taking them as girlfriends.*

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 fast as 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.

During and after the time of Rasool (saw) people lived in Islamic system in all aspects of life. As a result, many marriages in the Muslim world are arranged in the same system although others have extremely 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, most Islamic systems are considered backward especially for this marriage system due to a rapid modernization that has just happened in the 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 Allah (swt). 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, neighborhood or acquaintances, etc he shall propose to her in a manner as per shariah.

Islam also 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 clearly explain that seeing one another here does not mean dating; where a couple takes sometime “practicing”. This is haraam. 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 (Reported by At-Tirmidhi)..

And as a way of prohibiting this one-on-one intimate relationship, the Prophet (pbuh) prohibited the seclusion of a man and a woman (going together without a mahram) even if they are just walking, because satan will be more powerful to stir up their minds and throw a lustful desire in each heart.
At all times, Muslims should follow the commands of the Qur’an

“Tell the believing men to lower their gaze (from looking at forbidden things), and protect their private parts (from illegal sexual acts, etc.). That is purer for 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.

Therefore, to safeguard this marital relationship, it forbids all forms of temporary relationships between a man and a woman. Islam forbids pre-marital relationship and is considered disrespectful for either the man or the woman, it is also a shame to the religion having a family built in such a way in the name of Islam. Parents should not just put a smile at their daughter upon hearing that she has been picked by a guy; they should rather hurriedly consult the family of the other party and talk about the marriage of their children. Allah will make everything go easy between them. He is the All-Knower, the Most-Wise.


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