What I learned from my meta-analysis of fatwas on sex acts and Islamic content on sex and sexuality.
Summary of Halal & Haram Sex Acts
This is for those of you who just want quick answers and don’t want to read the entire post or the fatwas referenced.
- Cunnilingus — Allowed. Don’t swallow any sexual fluids
- Fellatio — Allowed. Don’t swallow any sexual fluids
- Facials, pearl necklaces, and the like — Allowed
- Spit or swallow?— Spit. Swallowing semen not allowed
- Rim job — Allowed. Don’t penetrate the anus with your tongue
- Anal fingering — Not allowed. You can massage her anus with your fingers without penetration
- Titty bang — Allowed
- Butt job — Allowed
- BDSM — Allowed
- Sex toys — Allowed. Don’t penetrate the vagina or anus with the toy
- Phone sex — Allowed. Masturbating during phone sex is not allowed
- Cyber sex — Allowed. Masturbating during cyber sex is not allowed
- Food play — Allowed. Keep it away from the genitalia, don’t let it touch any sexual fluids, and don’t waste any of it
One of my teachers clarified a few issues regarding the fatwas I presented below.
I have added his comments as footnotes to the article and referenced them in the post.
So, I’m the resident Islamist on r/islam.
One of the few voices of reasonable orthodoxy and orthopraxy in a sea of post-modern-anything-goes millenial Muslims.
A question that comes up a lot — the permissibility of specific sex acts.
Some examples of questions that come up about sex.
Aside from my annoyance at people being lazy af (people can study at MIT, online, for free, right now, but y’all can’t be bothered to do a google search on elementary subjects?) I got tired of seeing the same s*** over and over again.
So I wrote a detailed comment about it and link it whenever the issue comes up.
Then a friend of mine invited me on his Islamic talk show to do a series of episodes on various issues related to marriage — polygyny, spousal rights and responsibilities, and ‘taboos’ (i.e. sex.)
The first 15 minutes are slow. But then it gets RAUNCHY. FAST.
Luckily, I had already done the research and was ready to show up, fatwas blazing.
I went in.
Here’s a comment left by a scandalized auntie.
The content was INAPPROPRIATE for a family show like this. JUST BECAUSE a scholar said something in a book, DOES NOT MEAN you have to mention it in public.
I’m here today to present that ‘inappropriate content’ in all its Islamic glory.
But first, let’s talk about sex (baby, let’s talk about you and me, let’s talk about all the good things, and the bad things, that may be.)
Specifically, let’s talk about HOW we TALK about sex.
Have you ever watched those fatwa shows?
They’re wildly popular on TV and youtube.
From time to time, a question about sex comes up.
Here’s what I realized.
I have NEVER seen a subject as interesting as sex be made to sound SO BORING, as I have when Muslim scholars or preachers speak on the subject.
A couple of examples (don’t get me wrong, I have a lot of respect for both these scholars.)
Sheikh Muhammad Salah talks about blowjobs with a straight face:
Sheikh Muiz Bukhary talks about the etiquette of sexy times. Screaming orgasms are not mentioned:
Hena Zuberi, Saba Syed, and Haleh Banani talking about ‘feelings’ and s***:
Should ‘practicing’ Muslim women even be discussing this?
The requirements of female modesty are an invisible script that prevent them from doing this topic justice.
AND it was boring af.
In any case, I don’t trust women to discuss this objectively.
They are notorious for saying one thing and doing another.
See, for example, the 62% of (SIXTY TWO) women who have rape fantasies.
Muslim women in particular aren’t the innocent, demure flowers, oblivious to the ways between a man and a woman, we imagine them to be.
Y’all know the meme about ‘religious’ girls, right?
She attempted to restate the author’s argument. I teased her about it.
Many Muslim youth face an identity crisis when it comes to sexuality, and largely as a fragmented diaspora that is racialized, we are both viewed as oppressed but also hyper-sexualized. It creates a taboo, almost a shame, about sex — even if it’s sex that is entirely halal between a married couple. Many Muslim women are left torn between a dichotomy of desexualized and hypersexualized narratives tossed at them.
Please, shoot me in the face. Right now.
WHO TALKS LIKE THAT!
It sounds like it belongs in a frickin’ thesis defense.
Muslim scholars of the past preferred euphemisms when discussing sex.
Which is fine. I get it.
Modest prose for modest people.
I also totally understand it’s against the propriety and chivalry (in Arabic — Muru’ah مروئة) required of a Muslim scholar to speak lewdly or be perceived as speaking lewdly.
HOWEVER, in our age of pornography, masturbation, and premarital sex, EUPHEMISMS DO NOT CUT IT.
We can be explicit without being lewd.
DON’T use my article as an example.
My language is deliberately provocative in order to move the Overton window towards The Middle Way.
Because right now, with the ‘respectable modesty’ of observant Muslims, we are NOT doing our jobs when it comes to educating Muslims about sex.
And s*** like this happens.
My Own Research.
On realizing the need for accurate Ummah research, I decided to to a highly-optimized scientific study.
I asked Muslim men if they want their wives to savor The Ol’ Sauseej.
I asked Muslim women if they want their husbands to dine on The Pink Taco.
The overwhelming majority answered in the affirmative.
Sadly, I’ve since deleted those tweets.
Oral sex is common knowledge, though.
What about other, more exotic sex acts?
Muslims are into some kinky s***, yo.
OK, so now comes the part y’all been waiting for.
The guideline is that everything is allowed EXCEPT anal sex and period sex.(1)
Anyone who tells you a particular sex act is haram (impermissible) needs to PROVE IT.
I’m going to list the sex acts and summarize my findings.
I’m not going to go into technicalities unless necessary.
If you want to know the details, please read the linked fatwas.
- Cunnilingus — This is allowed. What’s interesting to note is that in medieval works of fiqh (law) our Islamic scholars mention the man going down on the woman and not the other way around. And they explicitly mention him kissing/licking/sucking the clitoris, the location most likely to bring about her orgasm. These works are hundreds, if not a thousand, years old. Compare this to the West’s ‘discovery’ of the clit in 1998! (Yes, you read that right. 1998.)
- Fellatio — This is like cunnilingus. There is some disagreement on ‘how much’ fellatio/cunnilingus is allowed, because of the consideration that one must not get needlessly filthy. Pre-cum is considered filth, so the husband/wife will get it in his/her mouth, and on his/her face and hands. One can get around this by wearing a condom/dental dam. Another opinion is that ‘spreading filth’ is a natural part of sex between couples, so the pre-cum that is spread during fellatio/cunnilingus is normal and not a problem. You can follow whichever of these opinions you are most comfortable with.
- Facials, pearl necklaces, and the like — Same considerations as the discussion in #2. You can choose either opinion.
- Spit or swallow?(2)(3)— Swallowing cum (the man’s or the woman’s) is not allowed because it is not permissible to ingest filth. Wash your mouth out when you’re done.
- Rim job — Allowed based on fellatio/cunnilingus being allowed. Don’t penetrate the anus with your tongue or swallow any filth. Wash your mouth out when you’re done.
- Anal fingering — Anal fingering is not allowed but you can massage the anus with a finger or rub your penis on it (without penetration.)
- Titty bang — He can rub his penis between her breasts.
- Butt job — He can rub his penis between her ass-cheeks.
- BDSM — It is allowed as long as both parties agree.
- Sex toys(4) — Sex toys (e.g. dildos, vibrators) are allowed but only during sex (not for masturbation.) They can only be used to stimulate her clit and not inserted into the vagina.
- Phone sex — Talking dirty on the phone is allowed between spouses but not if the objective is to help one or both of the spouses masturbate.
- Cyber-sex — Is like phone sex.
- Food play — Using food as a prop during sex is allowed as long as you keep it away from the genitalia, don’t let it touch filth, and don’t waste any of it.
OBVIOUSLY, all of the above only applies to heterosexual married couples.
ALSO OBVIOUSLY, both spouses must agree on what they are doing. You are not allowed to force your spouse to do something he/she doesn’t want to do.
Recommendations and Conclusion
Don’t be flippin’ autistic with your wife.
Learn Game. Learn social skills. Learn seduction. Learn how to bone.
DO NOT listen to women talking about feelings and emotional connections and s***.
Women say one thing and do another.
Don’t believe me? Why do ‘bad boys’ get the girls?
Learn to relax and enjoy yourself, gorramit.
Take a few slow, deep breaths before you bone.
Play with yourself while he’s giving you the stroke.(5)
Here’s some “Gender Equality” for you: YOU ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR YOUR OWN ORGASM.(6)
Don’t blame your husband because of your emotional hangups.
Get out of your head and lose yourself in the moment for five minutes so you can cum.
Let’s just use some common sense here.
Why are you making sex so complicated?
Get married, frack each others brains out and have screaming orgasms, but don’t stick it in her butt or her bleeding punani.
Is that so hard to get?
- “The guideline is that everything is allowed EXCEPT anal sex and period sex.” Yes, and one more thing is relevant apropos the discussion: ingesting filth.
- Semen is mustaqdhar (gross) — not najis. It is unlawful to ingest gross things. That’s in the event that someone were able to ejaculate without pre-cum rendering it filthy.
- Some vaginal secretions are considered pure, others filthy. They are mucus, which makes them mustaqdhar even if tahir. So licking and sucking the clitoris is fine, while doing the vagina runs into the aforementioned problem.
- Why can’t they be inserted into the vagina? Reasoning is needed. Fingers are fine. But the general rule is that your genitals are halal only to your spouse. Inanimate objects require research.
- “Play with yourself while he’s giving you the stroke” — that falls under masturbation, which is unlawful. Better: tell him what to do with the rest of his body while using his penis. Multitasking is possible.
- “You’re responsible for your orgasm” — sure, with the primary halal means of achieving it being to tell your husband what to do. The earliest sources mention him buttering her up mentally and physically before engaging in intercourse. Just as they mention that the husband should keep at it if he finishes before she does.
- I didn’t see mention of masturbating each other. (Nabeel — mutual masturbation is allowed.)