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Assalamu Alaikum. So I have a question regarding attraction in Islam.

Is it haram, when you’re seeking and wishing to marry someone, to have sexual attraction as a criteria? Because, and this is just a guess, I think EVERYONE wishes to marry someone who they think are attractive. But I of course want to follow Islamic rules and not be haram, I just want to know, is it haram to wish to marry a woman who’s attractive (body and face)? It’s a bit of an awkward question to ask, pllz don’t judge me. I’m just curious. Because I don’t want to marry someone I can’t be intimate with if you know what I mean. Of course there are other criteria like personality, behavior and so on but no one can deny that attractiveness is important. I want to gain knowledge and be a better Muslim.

If it’s haram, I ask you to let me know so I can have that in mind.

Thank you.

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There is no issue Islamically to have beauty as a criteria but don't make it the deciding/major factor in your consideration, as beauty doesn't last that long, and sooner or later, you'll get used to it and what remains are her personality, morals, and behavior; and that is what matters the most for a healthy and stable relationship. And most importantly, don't forget the Hadith of The Prophet ﷺ "A woman is married for four things, i.e., her wealth, her family status, her beauty and her religion. So you should marry the religious woman (otherwise) you will be amongst losers."

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No, rather it is encouraged to consider attractiveness among the other criteria. This is precisely why Islam recommends one to have a look at their spouse before marriage.

إذا خطب أحدكم المرأة فإن استطاع أن ينظر إلى ما يدعوه إلى نكاحها فليفعل

When one of you asked a woman in marriage, if he is able to look at what will induce him to marry her, he should do so.

Abu Dawud

There are ahadith which encourage a person to marry a spouse whom they find attractive:

قيل لرسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم أى النساء خير قال التي تسره إذا نظر وتطيعه إذا أمر ولا تخالفه في نفسها ومالها بما يكره

It was said to the Messenger of Allah: 'Which woman is best?' He said: 'The one who makes him happy when he looks at her, obeys him when he commands her, and she does not go against his wishes with regard to herself nor her wealth.'

Nasai

Ref: Arabic: Kashshaaf al-Qinaa‘, Mughni al-Muhtaaj, English: islamqa

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  • Perhaps it's an artifact of the translations, but both of those quotes are circumstantial when it comes to physical attractiveness. The first one can refer to almost anything (look at her riches, family, etc). The second quote does not necessarily refer to physical attractiveness either, at least not in a way I'd say I find a random person I haven't met attractive. I think it's more of a "I know this person and like them and I love seeing them". Am I getting something wrong here? Jun 1 at 10:05
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    @Gallifreyan The apparent meaning of "look at her" is to look at her body with the eyes. It is also evident from the version of the first hadith in Muslim which specifies looking at the eyes - that has to do with physical attractiveness. And the version of the second hadith in Musannaf Ibn Abi Shaybah which says: امرأة جميلة تسره إذا نظر إليها i.e. beautiful woman who pleases him when he looks at her. And this is how the scholars have interpreted it.
    – UmH
    Jun 1 at 12:39
  • I see, that makes sense. Thanks for the clarification! Jun 1 at 14:49

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