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I see that Islam has given very good options for people to remain sexually fit. My question is that nowadays usually people have only one marriage and even that at an age of 25-37 (my own observation, which may be very wrong). Now there is a whole lot of time in between which is spent without having a wife.

In all of this time, if a person tries to control himself from doing sex, he can go weird and unusual (this creates a lot of tension, depression and other health problems, as I read). A man can not wait for so many years for sex. So if he is in a position that he can not control it any further, can he masturbate?

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    Nooo, it is still haram. Take fast if he can't control
    – Tachyons
    Oct 7, 2012 at 19:27
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    you mentioned health problems. Do you know the severe health problems caused by masturbation? physical and psychological prominently. Even Sigmund Fruid has mentioned that if you do a research.
    – rowman
    Oct 12, 2012 at 6:42
  • "if a person tries to control himself from doing sex, he can go weird and unusual (this creates a lot of tension, depression and other health problems, as I read)" - probably that is false, if he fasts and lowers his gaze, and he should be ready to wet dreams (nocturnal emissions). i cannot say surely even though i am not married, because i have an illness, and i am not normal in this regard, it is easier for me than to normal guy. but i have absolutely no additional health problems.
    – qdinar
    Jan 12, 2017 at 10:50

8 Answers 8

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Masturbation is called استمناء in fiqh. There are no Quranic verses or authentic hadith that directly mention it.

The view of the Shafi and Maliki schools of thought is that masturbation is unconditionally forbidden no matter what the circumstances:

The evidence presented by them is

Quran 23:5-7 And they who guard their private parts. Except from their wives or those their right hands possess, for indeed, they will not be blamed. But whoever seeks beyond that, then those are the transgressors.

With the interpretation that a person himself is neither a "wife" nor a "slave" and hence the prohibition extends to himself.

From Tafsir Al Qurtubi:

قال محمد بن عبد الحكم: سمعت حَرْملة بن عبد العزيز قال: سألت مالكاً عن الرجل يَجْلِد عُمَيرة، فتلا هذه الآية { وَٱلَّذِينَ هُمْ لِفُرُوجِهِمْ حَافِظُونَ ـ إلى قوله ـ ٱلْعَادُونَ }. وهذا لأنهم يَكْنُون عن الذَّكَر بعُمَيْرة؛ وفيه يقول الشاعر:

Muhammad bin Abdul Hakim said, I heard Harmalah bin Abdul Aziz saying that: "When we asked Imam Malik about the person who masturbates, he recited this ayah 23:5 ...

From Tafsir Ibn Kathir:

وقد استدل الإمام الشافعي رحمه الله ومن وافقه على تحريم الاستمناء باليد بهذه الآية الكريمة { وَٱلَّذِينَ هُمْ لِفُرُوجِهِمْ حَـٰفِظُونَ إِلاَّ عَلَىٰ أَزْوَٰجِهِمْ أَوْ مَا مَلَكَتْ أَيْمَـٰنُهُمْ فَإِنَّهُمْ غَيْرُ مَلُومِينَ } قال فهذا الصنيع خارج عن هذين القسمين، وقد قال الله تعالى { فَمَنِ ٱبْتَغَىٰ وَرَآءَ ذٰلِكَ فَأُوْلَـٰئِكَ هُمُ ٱلْعَادُونَ } و

Imam Shafi and his followers take this verse as evidence that masturbation is forbidden, because it is a distinct from the two options mentioned, and the one who masturbates is one who transgresses the limits.

They further argue that in Hadith the Prophet advised a group of youths to guard their chastity by observing fast, the argument being that if masturbation was permissible then he would have suggested that instead.


The view among the Hanafis and Hanbalis is that masturbation is permissible when the person fears falling into Zina (fornication), which is a major sin clearly mentioned in the Quran, and a lesser evil may be used to ward off a greater evil.

From Tafsir Al Qurtubi:

وأحمد بن حنبل على ورعه يجوّزه، ويحتج بأنه إخراج فضلة من البدن فجاز عند الحاجة؛ أصله الفَصْد والحجامة.

Imam Ahmad bin Hanbal, despite his piety, declared it permissible. His view was that its the expulsion of waste from the body and is permissible to excrete it when one feels it necessary, and that it is based on blood-letting and cupping.

From the view of the Hanbali scholar Ibn Taymiyah mentioned on islamQA:

Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah was asked about a man whose desire overwhelms him and he masturbates, and he knows that this may be dealt with by fasting but it is too difficult for him.

He replied: With regard to water (semen) that is emitted involuntarily, there is no sin on him for that, but he has to do ghusl (bathe) if the water came out gushing. As for making it happen by choice, by means of masturbation, this is haraam according to most scholars, and it is one of the two opinions narrated from Ahmad; rather it is the stronger of the two. According to one report, it is makrooh (disliked), but if he is compelled to do it, such as if he is afraid of committing zina (fornication/adultery) or becoming ill if he does not masturbate, then in this case there are two well-known scholarly opinions. In this case, several of the earlier and later (scholars) granted a concession allowing it, but others forbade it. And Allah knows best.

Hanafi view mentioned on IslamOnline:

This view is very close to the opinion held by the Hanafites (followers of the Hanafi school), who maintain that masturbation is basically forbidden, but it may be permissible under the following conditions:

  1. if the person is unmarried,

  2. if he or she fears that without masturbation he/she will commit Zina, and

  3. if the masturbation here is, rather than fulfilling a sexual desire, just to release the sexual tension resulting from stimulation.

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  • interesting, what are arabic terms for the allowedness degrees "makrooh (disliked), but if he is compelled to do it, such as ..." of hanbalis, and "may be permissible under the following conditions" of hanafits? (i think maybe something like "haram, but, conditionally, makruh" and "haram, but, conditionally, masbuh" (i got the term "masbuh" from answer of sakib arifin)).
    – qdinar
    Dec 13, 2019 at 11:17
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Salam,

First of all, I would like to say that this question is very relevant as it pertains to a lot of muslim youth in this modern world.

I'm planing on pursuing studies that will probably last until I'm in my 30's and I can't get married until I have a stable life.

So I'm in the same situation brother. I'm 22, and thinking that I cannot have any sexual stimulation for 8 years seemed like a challenge that was almost bound to fail and so I researched about masturbation.

After some research I came to the understanding that masturbation is in fact haram and that is highly disliked by God as it puts you in a state of impurity and has negative psychological and physical repercussions.

But honestly, what I came to understand was that one should just put their trust in Allah and believe that if their will is to really please Him, then he will guide them.

Take it step by step and if you feel the urge to succumb, remember Allah, say "Astighfiru'lah" and He will help you.

Remember that no hardships that a soul couldn't overcome were created for it.

After all, this life is a test and it may seem like a 100 years is a long time, but what is it compared to eternity?

My brothers and sisters, I ask Allah to guide us and forgive us. Allah, the the most merciful and the Supreme guide.

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Masturbation is neither halal, nor haram, it is mashbooh (doubtful). The Quran says (interpretation of the meaning):

And they who guard their private parts

Except from their wives or those their right hands possess, for indeed, they will not be blamed -

But whoever seeks beyond that, then those are the transgressors

[Qur’an 23:5–7]

Based on the verses above, some scholars have concluded that masturbation is Haram. However, some other scholars consider it to be halal in some specific circumstances. According to Ibn Hazm and the Hanbali school of thought, it is halal (permissible) only under two conditions: first, the fear of committing fornication or adultery, and the second, not having the means to marry.

The view of Ibn Abbas (a companion of the Prophet) regarding masturbation is recorded in the following narration:

One day after one of Ibn Abbas's classes, everybody left except a young man who stayed behind. Ibn Abbas asked him what he needed and he replied that he wanted to ask a question but was too shy to ask in front of other people. Ibn Abbas said: "The scholar [alim] is like a father, so speak to me frankly, as you would to your own father." The young man said: "I am an unmarried young man, and sometimes I fear hardship upon myself, so I masturbate [astamni] with my hand." Ibn Abbas turned his face from him and said: "Fie, alas! It would be better to marry even a slave-girl, and yet it is better than adultery.

Ibn Abbas did not say, it is haram. But his expression indicates that though it is not haram, it is highly disliked. He said, “it is better than adultery.”

So, if you follow the view of Ibn Hazm (may Allah have mercy on him), it is halal in the said situation.

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    That Ibni Abbas -may Allah be pleased with him- has stated masturbation is better than adaultry, does not mean masturbation is not forbidden/haraam. Along the same lines, watching forbidden scenes is for sure better than being practically involved in adultery, but it does not mean gazing at such scenes is permissible/Halal.
    – Itsme
    Jan 15, 2017 at 19:02
  • where is the hadith about ibn abbas from?
    – qdinar
    May 4, 2017 at 4:00
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According to Ibn-Taymiiah it's haram by most of scholars, and it's the most authentic sayings of Imam ahmad , and the other saying that it is Makruh. Most of them say it is haram whether he is struggling or not, and some of them said it is fine if he feared "Zina" , and he couldn't avoid Zina unless he masturbates, or to be afraid that he will be ill. Then he said:

but without the necessity , I don't know anyone who permitted it.

Also Ibn-Alarabi said:

Scholars in general say it's Haram

see: https://www.islamweb.net/ar/fatwa/94248

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  • in the answer of UmH it is said that the one of reported opinions of imam ahmad is "makrooh (disliked), but if he is compelled to do it, such as ...". conditional makruh is not equal to makruh.
    – qdinar
    Dec 13, 2019 at 11:05
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Salam

A narration attributed to Hasan ibn Arfah reports:

Nabi (Sallallaahu Álayhi Wasallam) said, 'Seven persons are such that Allah will not look at them on the Day of Qiyaamat nor will He purify them nor will He include them among the learned and Allah will make enter them into Jahannam. They will enter Jahannam first except for those who repent. As those who repent Allah will accept their repentance.

  1. Person who masturbates.
  2. Person who performs the act of sodomy.
  3. The person upon whom the act of sodomy is performed.
  4. A long time drunkard without any stop.
  5. The person who hits his parents so much that they appeal for help.
  6. The person who harms his neighbours so much so that they curse him.
  7. The person who commits adultery with his neighbour's wife.

"And those who guard their chastity, except in the case of their wives or those whom their right hands possess, - for then, they are free from blame; but whoever seeks beyond that, then those are transgressors." -23:5-7.

The Qur'an chapter 23 Al-Muminun verse 5 to 7

As the above ayah shows, masturbation is not allowed in Islam.

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    Can you give the reference of the above Hadith?
    – Aamir
    Oct 9, 2012 at 5:01
  • I have seen this hadith before and it is generally considered weak, please provide citations for hadith
    – 0x777C
    Jul 10, 2020 at 17:14
  • As said in the comment before. Please do not attribute hadiths that are weak to our prophet and spread unauthentic claims. I have done quite a bit of research with regards to the topic of masturbation and there seem to be no specific references other than some weak hadith, which certainly isn’t enough to provide a justification. Jan 24, 2021 at 22:35
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According to Ĥanafī jurisprudence masturbation is prohibited unless there is fear of falling into zinā or sodomy.

Here is a fatwā by a Ĥanafī jurist, Alahazrat Imām Aĥmad Riđā Khān al-Ĥanafī al-Qādirī al-Baraylawī [1272-1340 AH / 1856-1921 CE] writes:

❝This impure act is Ĥarām and impermissible. Allāh jalla wa álā has only mentioned the wife and the legally valid slave-girl in order to fulfil this need. He has clearly stated:

❛So those who desire more than this – it is they who are the transgressors.❜

It is in the Ĥadīth:

❛The one who weds his hand is cursed.❜

Yes, if an individual is young and has intense desire, and he has no wife or legally valid slave-girl, and the intensity of desire compels him, and at that time even by busying oneself in some work or sitting with men the heart is not calmed, in short, that desire does not decrease in any condition, to the extent that he has certainty or overwhelming idea that if he does not do this act at that time, that he will fall into Ĥarām, and thus in such a condition, in order to be protected from zinā and liwāţat [sodomy], only in order to calm the desire, not with the intent of obtaining pleasure and fulfilling desire, if this act occurs, then it is hoped that Allāh táālā shall not call to account for this. Then alongside this it is wājib, if he has the ability, to do nikāh immediately or purchase a legally valid-slave-girl, or else he is a severe sinner and deserving of curse.

This permission was not for this purpose that one make a habit of this impure act, and instead of the way beloved to Allāh and His Rasūl ﷺ, he be content with this [i.e. masturbation].

It is in Ţarīqah e Muĥammadiyyah:

❛As for masturbation, it is Harām, except with three conditions.

  1. That he be single and he have overwhelming desire,

  2. The desire is overwhelming to the extent that it is feared he may fall into zinā or liwāţ [sodomy],

  3. That he intends by it calming of desire, not it’s fulfilment.❜

Greater detail has been included from it’s Sharĥ, Ĥadiqatu’n Nadiyyah.

It is in Tanwīru’l Abşār:

❛It [nikāĥ] is wājib when desire is overwhelming.❜

It is in Raddu’l Muĥtār:

❛I say: Similarly what is apparent is that if it is not possible for him to prevent himself from forbidden gazing and masturbation, then marriage is wājib, even if there is no fear of him falling into zinā.❜

And Allāh táālā knows best.❞

enter image description here

[Fatāwā al-Riđawiyyah, vol. 22, pg. 202-203]

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conditionally it may be better than engaging your self in adultrie, but if desired is not beyond control automatically it's haram.My suggestions is that fattaqullah satta da'a

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  • I wonder if this actually answers the question (see How to Answer).
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    Mar 14, 2018 at 11:03
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    – III-AK-III
    Mar 14, 2018 at 12:43
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Masturbation is not forbidden in Islam. Adultery is (all the answered Hadiths/Quran reference point to Adultery).

Some scholars (like Imam Shafi) use the following Verses/Hadiths to say that it is haram:

And those who guard their chastity. 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]

And let those who find not the financial means for marriage keep themselves chaste, until Allah enriches them of His bounty.[24:33]

We were with the Prophet while we were young and had no wealth whatsoever. So Allah’s Messenger said, "O young people! Whoever among you can marry, should marry, because it helps him lower his gaze and guard his modesty, and whoever is not able to marry, should fast, as fasting diminishes his sexual power. [Bukhari:5066]

Tell the believing men to lower their gaze and protect their private parts. That is purer for them. Verily, Allah is all-aware of what they do. And tell the believing women to lower their gaze and protect their private parts. [24:30-31]

However, these do not speak of Masturbation but of sexual acts (Adultery) . This can be proven that if you are caught with a woman cuddling the Adultery rule does not apply unless there are four witnesses to an actual sexual penetration (between the male and female) as narrated by the prophet:

وروى مسلم (1498) عَنْ أَبِي هُرَيْرَةَ رضي الله عنه أَنَّ سَعْدَ بْنَ عُبَادَةَ رضي الله عنه قَالَ : يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ ، إِنْ وَجَدْتُ مَعَ امْرَأَتِي رَجُلًا أَؤُمْهِلُهُ حَتَّى آتِيَ بِأَرْبَعَةِ شُهَدَاءَ ؟ قَالَ : (نَعَمْ) .

Muslim narrated from Abu Hurirah, that Said Ben Obada Asked the prophet (when the Ayah for the witnesses came down), if I find my wife having intercourse with another man, I have to leave them until I get 4 witnesses to catch them in the act? The prophet answered Yes.

Unless someone can prove to you that Masturbation == Adultery, it is not forbidden in Islam. You can deduce it is forbidden by wild speculations, but not clear as day.

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