Qur'an, Hadith and Scholars:Friendship with Non-Muslims
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The Quran and other Islamic sources prohibit certain degrees of relationship with non-Muslims in certain circumstances, including with some from among the "People of the Book". Its stance appears to have evolved over time at various stages of Muhammad's prophetic career, occurring in a context when the believers had been driven out from Mecca and there was a degree of enmity between them, as recorded in such verses as Quran 60:1. Certain hadiths too portray Muhammad as being skeptical of inter-faith friendships. Some contemporary views emphasize contextual issues, the unreliability of hadiths which often reflect a later period, and use particular verses and examples from Muhammad's life to argue that friendship with non-Muslims is permitted in most circumstances.
Do not take disbelievers as intimate friends or guardians / allies
A word common in many of these verses is awliyaa (plural of وَلِيٌّ waliyyun, from which we also have 'wali' - the male guardian of a female). It is often translated as friends and protectors, or allies.
The prohibiton in the above verse does not apply to all people of the book, some of whom are contrasted with "those who disbelieve" in the preceding verses Quran 3:113-114. This may be considered alongside verses 5:51, 5:57 and 5:82 quoted below.
A later verse in the same surah is more concilliatory regarding Christians, though not towards Jews and idolaters.
Muhammad softens his stance before the conquest of Mecca: Do not take guardians / allies from those who made war on you for religion and drove you out
Abraham's people, whom he declared enemies in the above verse, did nothing besides idolatry according to the tafsirs. But it should be noted that unlike the other verses listed in the section above, a softening of this stance occurs a few verses later in this surah. It says that Allah may put love / affection between the Muslims and those who had been their enemies, that they are permitted to show kindness and deal justly with them so long as they had not made war on the Muslims and had not helped drive them out. It is only those who did do such things that the believers should not take as guardians / allies (awliyaa).
The tafsirs say that verse 60:7 was uttered ahead of the conquest of Mecca because the previous verses were hard for the Muslims, telling them to disown their own relatives in Mecca, even their children in verse 60:3. Regarding verse 60:8, ibn Kathir cites hadiths that it came after Asma' bint Abu Bakr rejected her idolatress mother when she tried to visit her in Medina, and 'A'isha asked Muhammad's opinion on this.
Do not take your disbelieving family members as guardians / allies, and disassociate from them and do not love them if they are enemies of Allah
Surah 9 (at-Tawbah) came later chronologically than surah 60 quoted in the section above, after the conquest of Mecca. Here, even family could not be a Muslim's awliya if they love disbelief more than faith, though in context and according to some commentaries this may concern those who had refused to emigrate. Believers were not allowed even to have love for their relatives if they opposed Allah and Muhammad. Presumably, these restrictions did not apply otherwise.
(see also 60:4 above, where it says Abraham is a good example to follow).
An earlier (Meccan) surah tells believers to accompany their disbelieving parents with kindness / fairness in this world, even if they seek to make the believer commit shirk (which should be disobeyed):
Only pious Muslims where Muhammad's friends
Using the Qur'an, Umar kicked a Christian out of Medina
`Umar said, "Is he not pure Abu Musa said, "No, but he is Christian." Abu Musa said, "So `Umar admonished me and poked my thigh (with his finger), saying, `Drive him out (from Al-Madinah).' He then recited,"(O you who believe! Take not the Jews and the Christians as friends...) Then he reported that `Abdullah bin `Utbah said, "Let one of you beware that he might be a Jew or a Christian, while unaware." The narrator of this statement said, "We thought that he was referring to the Ayah,
A man follows the religion of his friend
Only stay with Muslims
The Prophet (ﷺ) said: Associate only with a believer, and let only a God-fearing man eat your meals.
Whoever joins a polytheist is like him
To proceed, the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said: Anyone who associates with a polytheist and lives with him is like him.
Muhammad was sent to stop friendship with Jews
ابن إسحاق; ابن هشام, سيرة ابن هشام ت السقا, vol.1, al-Maktabah al-Shamilah, p. 558, https://app.turath.io/book/23833
. . .
Allah said next, (unless you indeed fear a danger from them) meaning, except those believers who in some areas or times fear for their safety from the disbelievers. In this case, such believers are allowed to show friendship to the disbelievers outwardly, but never inwardly. For instance, Al-Bukhari recorded that Abu Ad-Darda' said, "We smile in the face of some people although our hearts curse them. Al-Bukhari said that Al-Hasan said, "The Tuqyah is allowed until the Day of Resurrection.
Muhammad Saed Abdul-Rahman
Muhammad Saed Abdul-Rahman
Kufr and Islam are opposed to each other. The progress of one is possible only at the expense of the other and co-existences between these two contradictory faiths in unthinkable.
The honor of Islam lies in insulting kufr and kafirs. One who respects kafirs, dishonors the Muslims. To respect them does not merely mean honouring them and assigning them a seat of honor in any assembly, but it also implies keeping company with them or showing considerations to them. They should be kept at an arm's length like dogs. ... If some worldly business cannot be performed without them, in that case only a minimum of contact should be established with them but without taking them into confidence. The highest Islamic sentiment asserts that it is better to forego that worldly business and that no relationship should be established with the kafirs.
The real purpose in levying jizya on them is to humiliate them to such an extent that, on account of fear of jizya, they may not be able to dress well and to live in grandeur. They should constantly remain terrified and trembling. It is intended to hold them under contempt and to uphold the honor and might of Islam.
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But this does not mean that a Muslim cannot interact with them in a nice manner that will encourage them to enter Islam, so long as that is within the guidelines of sharee’ah, as Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): [Quotes Quran 60:8]
The Muslim should strive hard to call non-Muslims to Islam through all possible permissible means, in the hope that they may benefit from that and respond, as Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): [Quotes Quran 16:125 & Quran 41:33]
[The fatwa goes on to quote the following Islamic scriptures:...Muslim narrated in his Saheeh (2674); Quran 4:97-98; Abu Dawood narrated in his Sunan (2645); al-Tirmidhi narrated in his Jaami’ (1640); Ibn al-Qayyim said in Tahdheeb al-Sunan (‘Awn, 7/304); Abu Dawood (2787); al-Haakim (2/141); Imam Ahmad (4/365); and al-Nasaa’i (4177)]
These texts indicate that the basic principle is that the Muslim should not settle among the kuffaar in their countries, and that he is obliged to move from those lands to the Muslim lands. An exception is made from that if his staying there is necessary, but necessity should not be blown out of proportion. If the Muslim has to be with them (the non-Muslims) physically, he should not be with them in his heart, and he must avoid mixing with them unnecessarily...
...Something else that will help you to stop mixing with non-Muslims is to remember that these kaafirs – even though they may have good manners and some good qualities – also do a number of seriously wrong things, any one of which is sufficient to nullify any good deeds that they may do. Among these evil things is the belief of the Christians – for example – that God is one of three (trinity), as Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): [Quotes Quran 5:73]
The other kaafir nations all attribute partners to Allaah, or else they do not believe in God at all.
The kuffaar in general do not believe in the Qur’aan or in the message of our Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), rather they reject the Qur’aan and they reject our Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him); so how can a Muslim be inclined towards them with their kufr and misguidance?
Islam Q&A, Fatwa No. 11793
“O you who believe! Take not the Jews and the Christians as Awliyaa’ (friends, protectors, helpers), they are but Awliyaa’ of each other. And if any amongst you takes them (as Awliyaa’), then surely, he is one of them. Verily, Allaah guides not those people who are the Zaalimoon (polytheists and wrongdoers and unjust)” [al-Maa’idah 5:51]
Islam Q&A, Fatwa No. 128632
Fatwa by Shaykh al-Shanqeeti
- Ruling on shaving the beard - Islam Q&A, Fatwa No. 1189
- Excerpted from Saiyid Athar Abbas Rizvi, Muslim Revivalist Movements in Northern India in the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries (Agra, Lucknow: Agra University, Balkrishna Book Co., 1965), pp.247-50; and Yohanan Friedmann, Shaykh Ahmad Sirhindi: An Outline of His Thought and a Study of His Image in the Eyes of Posterity (Montreal, Quebec: McGill University, Institute of Islamic Studies, 1971), pp. 73-74.