As far as I know, saving own life is farz. Now, if a person comes to me and holds a gun to my head and wants to kill me, can I defend my life by shooting him if I also have a gun in my hand?

Assume I didn't have any intention to kill him before he held the gun to my head.

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Yes, in Islam, it is permissible to kill your opponent as self defense. But it's best if you could wound him and save your life (only in case you think it is possible). But if someone attacks you, then there is nothing wrong in attacking back and killing the opponent. There wont be any sin on you.

This hadith gives clear answer to this point of view:

It was narrated that Abu Hurayrah (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: A man came to the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) and said: O Messenger of Allaah, what do you think if a man comes wanting to take my property? He said: “Do not give him your property.” He said: What if he fights me? He said: “Fight him.” He said: What if he kills me? He said: “Then you will be a martyr.” He said: What if I kill him? He said: “He will be in Hell.” Narrated by Muslim (140).

For more detail, you can go here: http://islamqa.info/en/78978.

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  • The hadith specifically mentions if the man wanted to take his property. So it's under a certain circumstance and not generally applicable. – Sayyid Mar 14 '15 at 18:41
  • @Sayyid, I think it is irrelevant how it started. Also you can assume your life is a property of yours and someone is trying to take it from you. – kalahari Mar 15 '15 at 1:52

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