Question # 296: Assalamu Alaikum, Can you please throw light on halal way of sex with wife. is oral sex or anal sex with wife is allowed in Islam?

Bismi-llahi r-raḥmani r-raḥīm,

Assalamu ‘laikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh,

All praise and thanks are due to Allah (سبحانه و تعالى), and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger (صلى الله عليه و سلم).

Dear questioner,

First of all, we implore Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) to help us serve His cause and render our work for His sake.

Shorter Answer: All sexual acts are permissible between spouses as long as:

  • There is no intercourse during her menstrual period. Anything short of full intercourse is allowed.
  • There is no anal penetration by the penis (sodomy). Having intercourse in her back passage (with or without barrier) is a major sin and is one of the most heinous acts of disobedience. However, enjoying what is between the buttocks without penetrating is permissible.
  • There is no swallowing of/direct contact with any najasah (impurity: sperm, urine or feces) during oral sex. Hence, the basic rule is that it is permissible for the spouses to enjoy each other in any manner except for what is mentioned above. There are no Sharia’h texts that prohibit oral sex; hence, it is allowed if performed with mutual consent of both spouses and does not causes any health problem. Nevertheless, according to some scholars, the tongue that recites the Qur’an, and glorifies Allah should not touch such areas of the body. Therefore, although it is not prohibited, it would be better to avoid such practice.

Long Answer: All sexual acts are permissible between spouses as long as:

  • There is no intercourse during her menstrual period.
  • There is no anal penetration by the penis (sodomy).
  • There is no swallowing of any najasah (impurity: blood, urine or feces).

Intercourse During Menses

The fuqaha’ are agreed that it is haraam to have intercourse with a menstruating woman in her vagina, because Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) says in the Qur’an: “keep away from women during menses and go not unto them till they are purified (from menses and have taken a bath).” (Soorah al-Baqarah, 2:222)

And the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم) said: “Do everything except intercourse.” (Narrated by Muslim) Al-Nawawi narrated that there was consensus on this point.

Anal Penetration

It is haraam to have intercourse with a woman in her back passage, because Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) says in the Qur’an: “And when they have purified themselves, then go in unto them as Allah has ordained for you (go in unto them in any manner as long as it is in their vagina)” (Soorah al-Baqarah, 2:222) i.e., in the front passage, which is the place of tilth. This is confirmed by the verse in which Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) says in the Qur’an: “Your wives are a tilth for you, so go to your tilth (Have sexual relations with your wives in any manner as long as it is in the vagina and not in the anus), when or how you will, and send (good deeds, or ask Allah to bestow upon you pious offspring) for your ownselves beforehand. And fear Allah and know that you are to meet Him (in the Hereafter) and give good tidings to the believers (O Muhammad).” (Soorah al-Baqarah, 2:223)

From the word harth (tilth) we understand that what is permissible is only in the vagina (the front passage), especially because this is what will produce children. The back passage is not the place of tilth. The phrase translated as “when or how you will” means in any manner you wish, from behind or from the front, sitting or with the wife lying on her back or on her side, so long as it is in the place of tilth (i.e., the vagina, the place from which a baby is born).

There are many ahadith which indicate that it is haraam to have intercourse with a woman in her back passage, for example:

  • It was narrated that Abu Hurayrah (رضي الله عنه) said: The Messenger of Allah (صلى الله عليه و سلم) said: “Cursed be the one who has intercourse with his wife in her back passage.” (Narrated by Ahmad and Abu Dawood (2162); classed as hasan by al-Albaani in Saheeh Abi Dawood)
  • It was reported from Khuzaymah ibn Thaabit (رضي الله عنه) that the Messenger of Allah (صلى الله عليه و سلم) said: “Allah is not too shy to tell you the truth: do not have intercourse with your wives in the anus.” (Narrated by Imam Ahmad; a hasan hadith) (Narrated by Ibn Maajah; classed as sahih by al-Albani in Saheeh Ibn Maajah)
  • Ibn ‘Abbas (رضي الله عنه) said: “The Messenger of Allah (صلى الله عليه و سلم) said: “Allah will not look at a man who has intercourse with his wife in her anus.” (Narrated by Ibn Abi Shaybah; narrated and classed as sahih by al-Tirmidhi)
  • The Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم) said, “Whoever goes in unto a menstruating woman or a woman in her anus or a fortuneteller has disbelieved in what has been sent down to Muhammad.” (Narrated by al-Tirmidhi and it is in Sahih al-Jami`)

The scholars have stated that it is permissible to enjoy that which is between a woman’s thighs and between the buttocks, without penetrating the back passage. Imam al-Shaafa’i said in al-Umm: “With regard to enjoying what is between the buttocks without penetrating, there is nothing wrong with that.”

Ibn Qudaamah said in al-Mughni: “There is nothing wrong with enjoying that which is between the buttocks without penetrating because the Sunnah forbids the back passage and applies only to that. And it is haraam because it is harmful, and that applies only to the back passage, so the prohibition applies only to that.”

It says in Rawd al-Taalib: “What the husband is allowed to enjoy of his wife:  He may enjoy everything except her anal sphincter, even that which is between the buttocks. As for enjoying the anal sphincter it is haraam to have intercourse there, because of the report which says: “Allah is not too shy to tell the truth; do not have intercourse with women in their back passages.” (Narrated and classed as saheeh by al-Shafi’i)”

The intercourse that is forbidden is when the head of the penis disappears into the back passage, with or without a barrier, and even if one does not ejaculate. The ruling has to do with penetration, not with ejaculation or touching. Al-Suyooti (may Allah have mercy on him) said in al-Ashbaah wa’l-Nazaa’ir: “There is no difference whether penetration is with a cloth or not.” The fuqaha’ (may Allah have mercy on them) have stated that it is haraam to have intercourse with a menstruating woman even if that is with a barrier. It says in Asna al-Mataalib, and there is something similar in Tuhfat al-Muhtaaj, which are both Shafi’i books: “Similarly, it is haraam to have intercourse with her (i.e., the menstruating woman) in her vagina, even with a barrier”

(Most part of the above reply is based on various answers by Islamqa.info)

Oral Sex (Cunnilingus or Fellatio)

The following are the fatawa from the scholars of Assembly of Muslim Jurists of America:

Dr.Salah Al-Sawy said: “The basic principle is that it is permissible for either spouse to enjoy the other, and there are no exceptions to that rule save the anus and menses. He does not have the right to sodomize his wife or to have vaginal intercourse with her during her menstrual period. As for anything beyond that, it would be permissible by default as long as there are no obstacles from a medical perspective.” “…they can manipulate each other`s sexual parts with any part member of their bodies; with tongue, mouth, hand etc., unless there are some health worries that would cause harm to either party, and that would be better avoided. Some Shari`ah scholars have said that Muslims should avoid doing things that would take away modesty and bashfulness between the spouses, especially in marital relationships…” “There remains the issue that enjoyment should be within what the general Islamic mannerisms impose. A man sucking the reproductive organs of a woman or the opposite, even if there isn’t a straightforward text preventing it, it is still rejected by healthy taste, nevertheless what it involves of coming in contact with impurities during that. Hence, we advise raising oneself above such an act. It is not befitting of the tongue that remembers Allah, the Mighty and Majestic, and recites His book, to come in contact with filth. And what Allah has permitted of enjoyment is amply enough for the one whose innate nature hasn’t been spoiled!”

Dr. Main Khalid Al-Qudah said: “Oral sex is allowed if it is done with the mutual consent of both spouses and does not have any medical side effects…”

Mohammad Said Mitwally Ibrahim, Ph.D.: “…As far as oral sex is concerned, scholars are in disagreement. Some scholars of the Hanbalis school of law allowed kissing a woman’s organs only before intercourse. My view regarding this issue is that it is permissible to practice oral sex provided that: 1. It does not include direct touching or contamination with any impurities such as urine or stool. 2. The wife must stop before the emission of spermatorrhea or prostatic fluid since it is impure. …5. It should not be medically or physically harmful to any of the two parties because the Prophet prohibited any harm to be inflicted or reciprocated. 6. It is prohibited for the wife to swallow sperms or spermatorrhea since sperm is impure according to a large number of scholars and spermatorrhea is absolutely impure according to all of them…”

Allahu A’lam (Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) knows best) and all Perfections belong to Allah, and all mistakes belong to me alone. May Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) forgive me, Ameen.

Wassalaam