Why is Zina banned

What about pre-marriage sex in Islam?

Status: 02/14/2015 11:43 a.m. | archive
Is ready for dialogue: Reporter Michel Abdollahi.

"I'm a Muslim. What do you want to know?" Michel Abdollahi has stood on Hamburg's Jungfernstieg with a large sign - and many have accepted his offer to talk to. A teacher from Amrum carried the campaign into her classroom and spoke about the attacks on the editors of "Charlie Hebdo" and the anti-Islam movement Pegida. The eighth grade students have now collected their questions about Islam and sent them to Michel Abdollahi.

Moin Mr. Abdollahi,
This morning I heard the announcement about your campaign on NDR-Info-Radio and have now looked at the report on the Internet. Then I talked to my 8th grade about it. When asked "What do you want to know?", They found numerous topics. Perhaps you can help us answer these questions?
Your Anna Grütte
Teacher for French and English at Öömrang Skuul, Amrum

Dear Mrs. Grütte,
I am pleased that your class is interested and will try to answer the questions - always from my own point of view, because I am speaking for myself here.

Student question 1: What do you think of the attacks in Paris?

What every civilized person should think of it: horrific, cruel and unjustifiable.

2: Do you have to be afraid of the Islamists in some countries?

The eighth grade of the Öömrang Skuul on Amrum has a few questions for Michel Abdollahi.

One can certainly be afraid of people who try to enforce their own opinion with violence, just as one can be afraid of all other people who try to enforce something with violence. I don't think one should be afraid of a religion. How you approach the subject is up to you, but problems in some countries are always the political, social and economic issues that ultimately lead to people being kidnapped, for example. The Foreign Office issues travel warnings for many regions of the world, from South America to China, but I am not yet aware that these are of a religious, but always political, nature.

Islamists are not normal believers, but politically motivated, radical and often militant. Accordingly, it is certainly advisable to avoid countries or areas where military conflicts are currently taking place. This does not only apply to the Islamic states, but to many parts of the world.

3: What is forbidden in Islam besides pork?

I think this question is not so easy to answer because, as in all religions, there is a range of different do's and don'ts, which are discussed in the numerous Islamic currents and sometimes interpreted very differently. In addition, not everything is forbidden right away. The famous Hungarian orientalist Goldziher illustrates it very aptly: "According to the opinion of Muslim theologians, not everything that is ordered or prohibited in the traditional sources of Islamic law in the form of commandments and prohibitions has the same degree of imperative or prohibitive power." From this point of view, Islamic legal science broadly distinguishes five categories:

  • religious obligation (Vajib or Farḍ)
  • recommended (Mandūb also:mustaḥabb or Sunnah)
  • indifferent (mubāḥ or Ḥalāl) allowed
  • frowned upon (Makruh)
  • forbidden (Arām)

This shows how differentiated one has to deal with rules and prohibitions and how different the possibilities for interpretation are.

4: What about pre-marriage sex?

From a religious point of view no different than in Christianity. Whoever sticks to it is then certainly a personal question again. In addition, it must also be said that the rules are interpreted differently and that there are again Islamic currents that try to circumvent the problem. For example, the Shiite principle of temporary marriage permitted by the imam is not widespread in Sunni Islam.

Who is Michel Abdollahi?

With his actions, Michel Abdollahi researches and questions trends, zeitgeist and the cultural circus. Born in Tehran, in Hamburg since 1986, studied law and Islamic studies, poetry slam moderator, emcee, painter, creative cultural organizer and admirer of classical Persian poetry.

Temporary marriage here means marriage for a specific period of time, and that can be from a few hours to many years. The instrument, which is legally recognized in some Islamic countries, serves to legitimize the coming together, but also in particular the dissolution of the relationship, legally and religiously, but to keep the legal obligations that would result from a regular divorce as low as possible.

5: What about marriages among men or among women and from cousin to cousin?

It is similar with homosexuality in Islam. This topic has also been dealt with and interpreted over and over again over the centuries, until we have reached the current state where homosexuality is punishable in most Islamic states. However, the interpretation of the original Islamic laws comes to very different conclusions, so that legal regulations of the 21st century are mostly interpretations of the respective Islamic states. At this point it should never be forgotten that even in our enlightened Germany and the territory of the GDR, homosexual acts were punishable until the 1970s. Section 175 of the Criminal Code was only deleted in 1994.

Marriage between second-degree relatives is permitted in Islam, just as under German law. The Catholic Church, on the other hand, rejects this form of marriage, but sometimes offers special rules. Here, too, the legislation of the respective state must always be checked. Not all predominantly Islamic states have the same views on inheritance and family law and have their own codified laws for this.

6: How is a wedding celebrated and what would be the punishment for cheating in the case of strict believers?

The question is not that easy to answer, as there are very different laws from country to country. A distinction is also made as to whether it is a question of adultery by a married person or the "cheating" of unmarried couples. Islam only differentiates between permitted and prohibited sexual intercourse, whereby permitted always provides for marriage. According to classical Islamic law, as in Judaism, the punishment for unauthorized sexual intercourse is stoning, which is still used in Sudan, for example. In many other Islamic countries, such as Turkey, Egypt and Indonesia, illicit sexual intercourse is not a criminal offense.

And how weddings are celebrated is best seen for yourself. Because the manners and customs are very different and the couple certainly also have their own ideas about their own wedding.

7: How many women can a man have, is there still something like a harem?

This question is also discussed very differently, according to the prevailing opinion, four women are allowed, although there are very precise rules for this. The idea that a man can simply take four wives is certainly not correct, because with every right comes an obligation, in particular with regard to the equal treatment of all married women: the payment of alimony, the prohibition of neglecting marital duties and so on . The rules for this are very different and so are the cases used in practice. Here, too, the advice applies to check the respective laws of the individual states, because one cannot generalize this, since there are also Islamic states that prohibit plural marriage in principle. Unfortunately, I don't know what the harem looks like. But the ideas from 1,001 Nights are certainly no longer really relevant.

8: Why was there this radicalization and the attacks in the name of Islam? What's that to do with us, we live so far away and there are (almost) no Muslims here?

I think these two questions can best be clarified with a lot of background knowledge and joint discussions, since the reasons are far deeper than simply in religion. Why do i get angry? Why do I sometimes lose control? Why do I sometimes act wrong, including serious, bad deeds like in Paris? People are always different, their motives are often very individual and connected with what they have experienced, their own experiences and the environment.

And whether you live somewhere where there are people of different origins or of different beliefs certainly no longer plays a major role in our modern world, where everyone can network with everyone. Perhaps one should ask the other way round: What if my job eventually leads me somewhere where I am a stranger myself?

Best regards to the class and to Amrum.
Michel Abdollahi

"I'm a Muslim. What do you want to know?"

Everyone is talking about Islam. But who ever talks to a Muslim? Michel Abdollahi puts the test to the test. He is in downtown Hamburg and is ready for dialogue. more

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Culture journal | 02/14/2015 | 10:45 p.m.