Does Islam Allow Sex with Female Captives of War? (Sex slavery in Islam)

One of the most troubling issues with Islamic morality comes from the Quran’s explicit permission to have sex with female captives of war. Muslims claim that Islam came with the perfect moral system and way of life, and that Prophet Muhammad was the primary example of this type of perfection. How can you square this with the fact that it allows taking advantage of vulnerable women who are slaves of war?

If slavery was truly inevitable (which it wasn’t), wouldn’t it have been morally superior that the Quran insisted that you cannot have sex with female captives but rather you have to marry them first? This simple change would have improved the lives of countless victims of slavery.  Women who are captives of war are in a vulnerable situation where they would not be able to consent. If Allah or Muhammad would have insisted that their rights be protected and they were married first, this would have been a million times better than what we have now.

Even today, 1400 years later, NY Times has reported that ISIS uses sex slavery as a recruiting tactic.  This is the heritage of Islam and Muhammad.  This is what he has brought to our world. A poisonous ideology that is not going away.

The Islamic Evidence

Allah says in the Quran,

وَالَّذِينَ هُمْ لِفُرُوجِهِمْ حَافِظُونَ
إِلَّا عَلَىٰ أَزْوَاجِهِمْ أَوْ مَا مَلَكَتْ أَيْمَانُهُمْ فَإِنَّهُمْ غَيْرُ مَلُومِينَ
And those who guard their private parts
Except from their wives or those their right hands possess, for indeed, they are not to be blamed –

Surah Maarij 70:29-30

Also this is repeated in Surah Muminuun:

وَالَّذِينَ هُمْ لِفُرُوجِهِمْ حَافِظُونَ
إِلَّا عَلَىٰ أَزْوَاجِهِمْ أَوْ مَا مَلَكَتْ أَيْمَانُهُمْ فَإِنَّهُمْ غَيْرُ مَلُومِينَ
And they who guard their private parts
Except from their wives or those their right hands possess, for indeed, they will not be blamed –

(Quran 23:5-6)

The companions of Muhammad were horny and wanted to have sex outside of marriage.  They understood they were allowed to have sex with their slave girls, but they didn’t want them to get pregnant so theyy asked for permission to  practice a form of birth control

I saw Abu Sa`id and asked him about coitus interruptus. Abu Sa`id said, “We went with Allah’s Apostle, in the Ghazwa of Bani Al-Mustaliq and we captured some of the ‘Arabs as captives, and the long separation from our wives was pressing us hard and we wanted to practice coitus interruptus. We asked Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) (whether it was permissible). He said, “It is better for you not to do so. No soul, (that which Allah has) destined to exist, up to the Day of Resurrection, but will definitely come, into existence.”

Sahih al-Bukhari 2542

Ibn Kathir and Al-Jalalayn in their tafseers say that “right hands possess” means slave girls

IslamQA in this fatwa explains that Intercourse with a slave girl is not considered Adultery

Allaah has permitted intimacy with a slave woman if the man owns her. This is not regarded as adultery

Also See What is a “right hand servant”? Does the owner of a “right hand servant” have to be married?

Shaykh al-Shanqeeti (may Allaah have mercy on him) said: The reason why a person may be taken as a slave is his being a kaafir and waging war against Allaah and His Messenger. If Allaah enables the Muslims who are striving and sacrificing their lives and their wealth and all that Allaah has given them to make the word of Allaah supreme over the kaafirs, then He allows them to enslave the kuffaar when they capture them, unless the ruler chooses to free them or to ransom them, if that serves the interests of the Muslims.

If a mujaahid takes possession of a female slave or male slave, it is permissible for him to sell them. In either case – whether one acquires a slave through battle or through purchase – it is not permissible for a man to have intercourse with a female slave until she has had a period from which it may be ascertained that she is not pregnant. If she is pregnant then he must wait until she gives birth.

Prophet Muhammad himself owned many slaves, 16 male ones according to this list. His female slaves included: Salma, Maymoonah bint Sa’d; Khadrah; Radwa; Razeenah; Umm Dameerah; Maymoonah bint Abi ‘Usayb; Maariyah and Rayhaanah.

Is it too much to ask that Prophet Muhammad not partake in the slave trade and enjoying personal benefits (sexually and otherwise) from slavery?  

Is it too much to ask that Allah would have asked Muslim men to free and marry their female slaves first before having sex with them?

There is a story about him sleeping with some of his female slaves and making certain wives angry, but that is a story for another day.

Slavery also had continued in the Muslim world almost until the 20th century.

Arab slave trade was the practice of slavery in the Arab world, mainly in Western Asia, North Africa, Southeast Africa, the Horn of Africa and certain parts of Europe (such as Iberia and Sicily) beginning in the era of the Roman Empire and continuing until the early second half of the 20th century. The trade was conducted through slave markets in the Middle East, North Africa and the Horn of Africa, with the slaves captured mostly from Africa’s interior.

Wikipedia on Arab slave trade

Slave women walk around topless

Back when I was Muslim, many many years ago I had a fellow Muslim brother (who was in Hizbut Tahrir) tell me that in Islam, the awrah for slave girls does not include their chest.  Thus some slave girls were not allowed to cover their chests. Apparently they even have a fatwa about this. I was really shocked when I heard this.


Merchant with a slave, Source unknown, obtained online


Examining Slaves” by Ettore Cercone, 1890, obtained online

Apparently there is evidence for this claim:

Narrated through Hamad Ibn Salama from Thamana Ibn Abdullah Ibn Anas from his grandfather Anas who said: “The slave-girls of Umar were serving us with uncovered hair and their breasts were shaking/wobbling ( تضطرب).”

Al-Albani: The chain of this Hadeeth is ‘Jayyid’ (at a level between Hasan and Saheeh) and all of it’s narrators are trustworthy except the teacher of Bayhaqi Abul Qasim Abdul Rahman Ibn Ubaidullah Al-Harbi and he is very Truthful as Al-Khatib says and Al-Bayhaqi said: “And the reports from Umar Ibn Al-Khattab concerning that matter are authentic.”

Ref: Irwa Al-Ghalil. Vol. 6, Pg. # 204

Umar hit the slave women from the family of Anas ibn Malik, when he saw them covered and said, “Uncover your head, and do not resemble the free women.” – Abd al-Razzaq al-Sanani (d. 211 AH/826 CE) in Al-Musannaf.   (Arab women pre-islam)

And here is another reference. The prominent Hanafi jurist, Imam Ibn Abidin (Allah have mercy on him) provides us with answers to these two questions in his authoritative work, Radd al-Muhtar.

Imam Ibn Abidin (Allah have mercy on him) expounds on the issue of a slave-woman’s Awra. He states here and in another chapter of his work that the Awra of a slave-woman (excluding one’s own) is similar to the Awra of a Mahram woman, in that it is permissible to see of a slave-woman that which is permitted to see of a Mahram woman. The area between the navel up to and including the knees was understandable but there was a need to define the stomach and back. As such, he clarifies what precisely is meant by the stomach and back and stipulates clearly that the chest including the breasts and the area parallel to the chest from the back are not considered to be part of the Awra of a slave-woman and a Mahram. Thus, strictly speaking, it is not necessary for a woman to cover these parts in front of a Mahram male.

Similarly, it is stated in al-Fatawa al-Hindiyya:

“It is okay for a man to see from his mother, mature daughter, sister and all other Mahram women such as grandmothers, grandchildren, paternal and maternal aunts, at their: hair, chest, locks, breasts, forearms (shoulders) and shins. It is not permissible to look at their back, stomach and the area between the navel and (including the) knees.”(Al-Fatawa al-Hindiyya, 5/328)

We read in Sunan al-Kubra by Imam Beyhaqi:

عن نافع ، عن ابن عمر ” أنه كان إذا اشترى جارية كشف عن ساقها ووضع يده بين ثدييها و على عجزها
Nafe’e narrated that whenever Ibn Umar wanted to buy a slave-girl, he would inspect her by analysing her legs and placing his hands between her breasts and on her buttocks”

Irwa al-Ghalil [6:201] by Sheikh Albani states:

أن ابن عمر كان يضع يده بين ثدييها ( يعني الجارية ) وعلى عجزها من فوق الثياب ويكشف عن ساقها
“Ibn `Umar (ra) used to put his hand between her [meaning the jariya’s] breasts and on her haunch from above (her) clothes and used to unveil her leg.”

Sheikh Hamza Yusuf says,

In an Islamic system in Medina there were women walking around bare breasted, and that is a fact, that is a historical fact and you can read it and look it up in the books.  Umar did not allow the ima (slave girl) to wear the hijab.  Source: Video on Youtube at 1min 16seconds

I find this quite strange, you can look at her breasts but not her stomach?

Females cannot sleep with male slaves

Also, A female cannot marry her slave.  How strange!  IslamQA states:

It is haraam for a slave to marry his mistress. Ibn al-Mundhir said: The scholars are unanimously agreed that marriage of a woman to her slave is invalid. Al-Athram narrated, with his isnaad from Abu’z-Zubayr, who said: I asked Jaabir about a slave marrying his mistress, and he said: A woman came to ‘Umar ibn al-Khattaab, when we were in al-Jaabiyyah. She had married her slave, and ‘Umar rebuked her and thought of stoning her, and he said: He is not permissible for you.

If a woman owns her husband [i.e., if he is a slave or she bought him, for example], her marriage becomes invalid. End quote.

You can sell your slaves you impregnated

In the following hadith the prominent companion Jabir admits that they used to sell the slaves they had children with and they saw no problem with that:

Jabir bin `Abdullah was heard to say:
“We used to sell our slave women and the mothers of our children (Umahat Awaldina) when the Prophet (ﷺ) was still living among us, and we did not see anything wrong with that.” (Ibn Majah)

In conclusion

In conclusion, the Quranic injunctions that allow men to sleep with their female captives of war are morally reprehensible. There is no way a just and loving god would allow taking advantage of vulnerable women in such a situation.

Further links:

14 thoughts on “Does Islam Allow Sex with Female Captives of War? (Sex slavery in Islam)

  1. I converted from Christianity to Islam (not that I care what non muslims think or say) and I did a lot of research before I did. Firstly, I would like to say it’s stupid to judge the medieval Arabian society (or any society) that existed thousands of years ago to our 21 century standard. Back in those days slavery was prevalent and existed In all societies. Unlike in the Bible, slavery was never endorsed by Islamic texts; rather it was something inherited from pre-Islamic cultures (pre-600s) that needed to be voluntarily and gradually weeded out of society through manumission, which was highly encouraged (Chapters 24:32-33 & 16:71). Islamic texts list a plethora of avenues to free slaves, as it was seen as a highly virtuous act. It’s difficult to find any references on how to make slaves out of people; rather the focus is always on ending slavery.

    Did we not show him the two paths? He should choose the difficult path. Which one is the difficult path? The freeing of slaves. Feeding, during the time of hardship… [90:10-14]

    Righteousness is not turning your faces towards the east or the west. Righteous are those who believe in God, the Last Day, the angels, the scripture, and the prophets; and they give the money, cheerfully, to the relatives, the orphans, the needy, the traveller, the beggars, and to free the slaves… [2:177]

    The charities are to go to the poor, and the needy, and those who work to collect them, and those whose hearts have been united, and to free the slaves, and those in debt, and in the cause of God, and the traveller. A duty from God, and God is Knowledgeable, Wise. [9:60]

    One of the big moral issues with the Quran is its explicit permission to have sex with female captives of war……

    False…..I don’t think you seem to realise that back in those days when men took part in battles and died, they left behind widows with children and these widows and children ended up as slaves and prostitutes, split apart from their parents and living in hardship.

    The Quran says Muslim men should marry these women first and provide them a dowry. They aren’t allowed to forcefully have sex with them, they are also not allowed to be passed on to other men to have sex. These women had to be treated equally to a believing Muslim wife, she wasn’t allowed to be forced converted to Islam, the husband should provide for her and treat any children she has with the same respect, kindness and equality as his own blood-related children. I won’t go into detail but there are numerous hadiths out there that says all this.

    [4:24] And [also prohibited to you are all] married women except those your right hands possess. [This is] the decree of Allah upon you. And lawful to you are [all others] beyond these, [provided] that you seek them [in marriage] with [gifts from] your property, desiring chastity, not unlawful sexual intercourse. So for whatever you enjoy [of marriage] from them, give them their due compensation as an obligation. And there is no blame upon you for what you mutually agree to beyond the obligation. Indeed, Allah is ever Knowing and Wise.

    [4:25] And whoever among you cannot [find] the means to marry free, believing women, then [he may marry] from those whom your right hands possess of believing slave girls. And Allah is most knowing about your faith. You [believers] are of one another. So marry them with the permission of their people and give them their due compensation according to what is acceptable. [They should be] chaste, neither [of] those who commit unlawful intercourse randomly nor those who take [secret] lovers. But once they are sheltered in marriage, if they should commit adultery, then for them is half the punishment for free [unmarried] women. This [allowance] is for him among you who fears sin, but to be patient is better for you. And Allah is Forgiving and Merciful.

    The term ‘ma malakat aymanukum’ (Literally: What your right hands possesses) is not gender specific and as an idiomatic expression, applies to ‘those that one keeps in protection and honour’. This can include captives, slave girls, maidens, servants (fatayatikum 4:25) etc. Please note that the ‘right hand’ has a somewhat glorified meaning in the Quran which is apparent from its usage in different contexts (e.g. those on the right hand in heaven; books of one’s deeds given to the right hand etc).

    Finally, I’d like to say is that Like many myths about Islam, the Quran and Muslims, I’ve always heard the worst from Islamophobic extremists and Islamist extremists alike. They tend to share pretty much the same language, online content and perpetuate the same awful narratives about Muslims and their supposed religious practices.

    It’s actually very very boring hearing non Muslims go on about the same old thing over and over again. Islam doesn’t allow rape too and during Muhammad’s time, rapists were stoned to death. Conveniently this is something the extremists ignore, and this example further enforces the point that religious illiteracy is a root cause of extremism. Islamophobic extremists as well as Islamist extremists (like Isis) who promote and validate sexual violence through unspecific passages in the Quran – or without context – do so to justify their own violent mindsets.

    1. The point of revelation from an Islamic perspective is so that they follow ‘ gods message ‘ I put that in inverted commas because I am an ex muslim atheist now.anyway according to Islam it’s the Last message and therefore don’t you think it’s logical for god to outlaw slavery or does s/he have a problem or difficulty. Couldn’t he outlaw it like he did with alcohol , gambling many other things! People use to drink and it was common and within a century or so there was no longer an an alcohol in arabia! How could you follow something that supports slave captives!

    2. You are wrong, the Quran does not say that men have to marry the slave first before being allowed to have sex with them. You are the one who is religiously illiterate as you have misinterpreted An Nisa 4.24. It means, leaving aside Married women and Slave, all other women should be offered dowry and wedded in order for them to be lawful.

      There are so many Quran quotes and Hadith that are clear on the issue, please read the following thread for clarity and I’d like to hear how you explain away and/or misinterpret all these;

      Its interesting how Muslims always say ‘but that’s what it was like back then in medieval times’ to so many issues however if the all knowing and all wise is responsible for the Quran then he would know that slavery was not necessary and that it would be abolished as we became civilised. You make out it was to do them a favour and to free them, well you need to have slaves in the first place in order to free them so why have them in the first place? Why didn’t the all wise simply say ‘look guys, slavery is wrong and not necessary in a long time from now it will be completely outlawed, so just kill the soldiers in battle and leave all the other non fighting men alone and they can look after the women and children left behind along with the rest of their families. Oh and don’t take all the war booty just leave some behind for them to live off because that’s the loving and compassionate and right thing to do’!

      I tell you why Allah never said that, its because the man/men who created the Quran did not realise slavery was wrong, not necessary or that it would be abolished in the future.

      People like ISIS are actually following the Quran and Hadith and are living like the Prophet and his men did back in medieval times which is completely wrong, hence another reason for it being man-made. Of course there are those ISI fighters that do not follow the teaching and violate the rules laid down by Allah and the Prophet but it is only those who are terrorists not all of them. That’s like saying all Muslims are terrorists!

      The so called miracles of the Quran are also a nonsense, most of them were plagiarised from the ancient Greeks (although they did not claim them to be miracles – great minds of their time worked things out) and even contain the same errors the Greeks made of their understanding of matters in those days. All the miracles have been debunked, they were always built on Muslims clutching at straws, making something out of nothing, mistranslating words to suit their needs of a miracle. Nothing mentioned in the Quran was out of the ordinary for the people of that time and place.

      There is nothing in the Quran or Hadith that proves Islam is real but there is plenty to prove that it is man-made by the fanciful and unbelievable stories it contains. The nail in the coffin for the Muslim however is the fact that the Quran is the ‘clear’ word of Allah and is the ‘perfect book’ and is the ‘only guide needed for all mankind’ yet it is the most difficult scripture known to man to translate, you need a PhD in Arabic to ‘fully understand it’ and even then you need to argue with other fully fluent Arabic scholars about the interpretation of the Arabic meaning.

      And that is the biggest joke of all, the fact it’s far from clear and straight forward to understand and so open to meaning different things. Surely an all wise being would foresee this to happen and that it would cause so much havoc amongst its own people let alone those outside of the religion.

      Anyway it doesn’t matter what I or anyone else thinks as long as you believe then you will be one whom it to be admitted to the garden of paradise and I the loser whom will enter the hell fire. Never mind the fact I’m a kind loving person to my family and friends and take part in charitable event to help the poor and donate to the poor I deserve to burn in hell for eternity. You however whom recites Arabic and have no idea what you are saying and follows the other arbitrary rules laid down, you will surely be deserved of paradise. HOW SILLY.

      1. The religion of Islam is a very beautiful religion when it comes to human equality and to liberation of slaves. When Prophet Muhammad peace be upon him brought Islam to his people from Allah Almighty, they used to practice the Judeo-Christian and Pagan slavery. They used to buy and sell slaves, abuse them, and flog them to death if slaves disobey. The Muslims had fought long and bloody battles against the Pagan Arabs to liberate slaves and women.

        The reason why Muslims had slaves is because when Islam was still weak and growing, the Arab Pagans’ tribes used to launch continuous attacks on the Muslims to destroy Islam once and for all. Muslims had entered many bloody and vicious battles against the non believers which had cost both sides many lives from the men. When the Muslims used to enter a city after defeating its army, they would face a new dilemma. They often meet hundreds of non believing women and young children and elderly left without any support because their men had died in the battle field.
        For this reason, Allah Almighty allowed for the Muslims to take those people as slaves to help them survive. Keep in mind that during that time, the Muslims didn’t have an Islamic government and welfare system to take care of the orphans and widows from the non believers. The Muslims had to take care of them from their own means.
        Prophet Muhammad peace be upon him ordered the Muslims to be very sensitive to their slaves. He ordered the Muslims to buy the slave young boys and girls the same quality of clothes and gifts that they would buy for their children. He also ordered Muslims not to hit or be violent to adult slaves. He ordered Muslims to be loving and caring for them.
        Prophet Muhammad also urged wealthy Muslims to buy slaves from the Pagan Arabs and to let them free after that. One of Prophet Muhammad’s best friends was a slave from Africa called Bilal Al-Habashi. Bilal was bought from his Pagan master by Abu Baker Al-Siddeek, one of Muhammad’s best friends. After Abu Baker bought Bilal, he set him free.
        Islam as I mentioned in the introduction came to fight slavery. Allah Almighty ordered the Muslims to gradually liberate slaves and to give them their freedom in many cases.

        Let us look at Noble Verse 4:92 “Never should a believer kill a believer; but (If it so happens) by mistake, (Compensation is due): If one (so) kills a believer, it is ordained that he should free a believing slave , and pay compensation to the deceased’s family, unless they remit it freely. If the deceased belonged to a people at war with you, and he was a believer, the freeing of a believing slave (Is enough). If he belonged to a people with whom ye have treaty of Mutual alliance, compensation should be paid to his family, and a believing slave be freed. For those who find this beyond their means, (is prescribed) a fast for two months running: by way of repentance to God: for God hath all knowledge and all wisdom.”

        In this Noble Verse, we see that Allah Almighty ordered to free a believing slave if a Muslim accidentally kills another Muslim. This Noble Verse came to encourage Muslims to liberate slaves.

        Narrated Abu Musa Al-Ash’ari: “The Prophet said, “Give food to the hungry, pay a visit to the sick and release (set free) the one in captivity (by paying his ransom). ” (Translation of Sahih Bukhari, Food, Meals, Volume 7, Book 65, Number 286) ”

        Narrated Asma: “No doubt the Prophet ordered people to manumit slaves during the solar eclipse. (Translation of Sahih Bukhari, Eclipses, Volume 2, Book 18, Number 163) ”

        “‘Abdullah b. ‘Umar reported that ‘Umar b. Khattab asked the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) as he was at ji’rana (a town near Mecca) on his way back from Ta’if: Messenger of Allah, I had taken a vow during the days of Ignorance that I would observe I’tikaf for one day in the Sacred Mosque. So what is your opinion? He said: Go and observe I’tikaf for a day. And Allah’s Messenger (may peace be upon him) gave him a slave girl out of the one-fifth (of the spoils of war meant for the Holy Prophet). And when Allah’s Messenger (may peace be upon him) set the war prisoners free. ‘Umar b. Khattab heard their voice as they were saying: Allah’s Messenger (may peace be upon him) has set us free. He (Hadrat ‘Umar) said: What is this? They said: Allah’s Messenger (may peace be upon him) has set free the prisoners of war (which had fallen to the lot of people). Thereupon he (Hadrat ‘Umar) said: Abdullah, go to that slave-girl and set her free. (Translation of Sahih Muslim, The Book of Oaths (Kitab Al-Aiman), Book 015, Number 4074) ”

        If a Muslim beats his slave or slaps him on the face, then he must set him free:
        “Zadhan reported that Ibn Umar called his slave and he found the marks (of beating) upon his back. He said to him: I have caused you pain. He said: No. But he (Ibn Umar) said: You are free. He then took hold of something from the earth and said: There is no reward for me even to the weight equal to it. I heard Allah’s Messenger (may peace be upon him) as saying: He who beats a slave without cognizable offence of his or slaps him , then expiation for it is that he should set him free. (Translation of Sahih Muslim, The Book of Oaths (Kitab Al-Aiman), Book 015, Number 4079) ”

        There are a lot more Noble Verses from the Noble Quran and Sayings from our beloved Prophet Muhammad peace be upon him that push for freeing of slaves. The Islamic attitude toward slaves is very clear and straight forward: All slaves are eventually to be freed! And they were all freed during the times of Islam from the Judeo-Christian and Pagan slavery.

        First, it is important to know that thousands of years ago life was different than today. Today, people wouldn’t accept slavery for any reason. The reason for this is because people are a lot more independent both financially, education wise, mentally, etc… But people back then were different. When a tribe or a group of people lose a major battle and their money is mostly, if not all, is taken as war booty by the other side, then people could and would accept being slaves for the following reasons:

        1- Both financial and social security. When their country or tribe lost the war, they also lost most or all of their money as war booty. Being out of money and food, it becomes necessary for an individual to find the means for basic survival in life. Living as a slave would provide this.
        2- Protection from hostile individuals. Even under the Islamic rule, you can still find hostile individuals who violate the Law and take matters into their own hands. An enemy family can be sometime in danger if they don’t have a “protector”.
        3- Widows, Orphans, and the extremely poor of the enemy side need the financial and social protection from a Master. Back then, there were no governments with good social system that protects everyone. Slavery back then was that social system in special cases.

        1. When Islam was reveled to Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him), slavery was a worldwide common social phenomenon; it was much older than Islam. Slavery was deeply rooted in every society to the extent that it was impossible to imagine a civilized society without slaves.

          In spite of this social fact, Islam was the first religion to recognize slavery as a social illness that needed to be addressed. Since slavery was deeply rooted in the society, Islam did not abolish it at once. Rather, Islam treated slavery in the same manner it treated other social illnesses. Islam followed the same methodology of gradual elimination in dealing with this social disease as it did with other social illnesses, for example: the prohibition of alcohol in three steps.

          Concerning having slave women, we would like to let you know that it happens to be a practice necessitated by the condition in which early Muslims found themselves vis-à-vis non-Muslims, as both parties engaged in wars. Slave women or milk al-yameen are referred to in the Qur’an as “Those whom your right hand possess” or “ma malakat aymanukum” ; they are those taken as captives during conquests and subsequently became slaves, or those who were descendants of slaves.
          Thus, it was a war custom in the past to take men and women as captives and then turn them into slaves. Islam did not initiate it, rather, it was something in practice long ago before the advent of Islam. And when Islam came, it tried to eradicate this practice, bit by bit. So it first restricted it to the reciprocal practice of war, in the sense that Muslims took war captives just as the enemies did with Muslims.

          But as it aimed at putting an end to such issue, Islam laid down rules which would eventually lead to eradicating the practice. So it allowed Muslims to have intercourse with slave women taken as captives of just and legitimate wars. In so doing, the woman would automatically become free if she got pregnant. What’s more, her child would also become free.
          Not only that, Islam also ordered a Muslim to treat the slave woman in every respect as if she were his wife. She should be well fed, clothed and given due protection. In the family environment, she had the opportunity to learn about Islam and was free to accept it or reject it. She also had the opportunity to earn her freedom for she could be ransomed.

          In the light of the above-mentioned facts, and the nature of the question posed by people, it’s clear that some people misunderstand the wisdom behind the permissibility of having female slaves and think that it is meant to unleash men’s desires and give them more enjoyment. Never! That is not the point! It is, rather, means of freeing slaves; and this is clarified above in the fact that if a master got a female slave pregnant, then he could neither sell her nor give her away as a present. And if he died, she would not be considered part of his property. She’d receive her freedom and her baby would also be free.

          But, we have to stress that this case should not be confused with that of female servants or maids, for they are free and not slaves. Therefore, it is forbidden to engage in sexual relations with them except through an Islamic marriage.

          Slavery has been abolished by international conventions, and goes in line with aims and objectives of Islam, as it has called for centuries ago.
          As for marrying slaves, it is something permissible under two conditions: first, if one is unable to pay the dowry of a free woman. Second, if there is fear of committing adultery if one doesn’t get married.

          This is clarified by the following verse: “And whose is not able to afford to marry free, believing women, let them marry from the believing maids whom your right hands possess. This is for him among you who feareth to commit sin. But to have patience would be better for you.” (An-Nisaa’: 25)

          This verse shows that Muslim men should abstain from illicit relations and seek enjoyment through marriage to free women or through their female slaves. We know many men have more urge towards sex although they are married to one many men cannot be satisfied with that, so such men should not go to illicit relationship rather they should marry another (During this period there is no war and they are not allowed to keep sex slaves, the only choice is to marry another one) earlier during war period those men had two choices either second marriage or keeping slaves to maintain their chastity from committing fornication.

          In conclusion, Allah has forbidden certain types of behavior and permitted other kinds of behavior as a safeguard to the individual and to the society. Allah has forbidden fornication and adultery. However, in the case of captives whom your right hands posses, it’s something necessitated by the special circumstances which were created when the Muslims were at war.”

          1. So you say that for freedom, a woman has to undergo the risk and effects of pregnancy and childbirth? What if she doesn’t want to be pregnant? Is she trapped?
            What about a woman who doesn’t want to have sex? Can she gain freedom by a way other than sexual services? Can she refuse sex in the first place, or is she like a wife and can’t refuse the master/husband’s sexual approaches?
            “although they are married to one many men cannot be satisfied with that”
            What about a woman who isn’t satisfied by one husband? Can she get a slave or marry another man? Or does Islam cater only to a man’s sexual desires?

          2. As for your bit on slavery being abolished, that’s man-made law. God’s law is superior to man-made law, and thus a true Muslim state must abide by God’s law and allow slavery.

    3. Thank you brother. This topic is a hot issue not only for non-Muslims but also for Muslim youth who do not read a lot from authentic references, but are perplexed when they read or hear about the verse about female slaves in Quran. Jazakallah.

    4. 1- The fact remains that Islam did not abolish slavery. Thus you can’t call it perfect unless you accept slavery.
      2- Why can’t a woman marry her slave? Is a woman having authority over her husband such a horrible thing?
      3-Slaves can’t be forced, but you forget that they generally follow the rulings on wives, and a wife doesn’t have the right to refuse sex.
      4- Why sex slaves? Why allow sex with slaves in the first place? Just make them regular slaves, and force the man the marry her if he desires her.

    5. Ebony,

      Thank you. I enjoyed reading your reply. Im sure it took a lot of effort to type it out. May Allah reward you. Ameen.

      If you don’t mind, Im going to plagiarize some of it.

  2. I am almost an ex Muslim who has studied Islam in great depth in a number of Islamic institutions.

    I find it hilarious reading the desperate attempts of Muslims to rationalise or deny even the hideous teachings of Islam that have always been unanimously accepted by the vast majority of Islamic scholars since the dawn of Islamic.

    Another sad aspect to Muslims like the above few clowns who have commented is that they are obviously so fearfull or so indoctrinated that any length of words big or a few line’s skeptical of Islam would be quickly skipped over and a desperate childishly apologetical response given.

    Islam like all religions is responsible for making it’s believer’s into intellectually dishonest cowards.

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