Ask A Muslim: Islam and Homosexuality

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By Maimoona Harrington

I’ve been considering converting recently, however there’s something I can’t agree with which is the topic of homosexuality. My friend says I can’t truly convert unless I fully believe in everything the Quran states. Is that true?

From a strict interpretation of Islam, it is true that one has to accept all aspects of religion in order to be a true believer and follower. You cannot be selective in religion. It’s a package. Islam teaches believers to treat everyone with respect, love, dignity and equality. In the eye of our Creator we are all equal. In Islam Allah (God) is also known by ninety-nine names or attributes, called ‎‎, asma-ul-husna (أسماء الله الحسنى).

The Beneficent
He who wills goodness and mercy for all His creatures.

One of Allah’s attributes is “Al-Rahman” (The Beneficent), “He who wills goodness and mercy for all His creatures.” So we leave this to our Creator to be a judge in this or any other matter and treat all human beings with equal respect, dignity and love as He is also “Al-Adl” (The Just).

Interpretation Varies

I am not saying that all followers of Islam feel the same way, yet the attributes of Allah will not be denied by any believer. Islam and its sacred texts emphasize on living and leading a good life and its interpretation on homosexuality or many other subjects and issues vary between its various sects and communities from state to state and culture to culture. Islam spread from the desert of Saudi Arabia to the South to South East Asia and Sub Sahara Africa. With this widespread, it also integrated and assimilated diverse cultural practices and norms. With the acceptance of new religion as Islam in this case, these societies also had their own views on the matter, and this also assimilated into Muslim societies. Thus homosexuality is considered taboo or unlawful not only in Islam but also in many Muslim societies around the world. Nevertheless , homosexuality is a subject that is open for dialogue in Muslim world and cultural norms and sacred readings are being discussed to learn and understand the matter more for inclusiveness. Rest Allah is the “Al-Alim” (The All Knowing one).  

Disclaimer: I am not a religious scholar. I tried to answer this question with the best of my knowledge and understanding of Islam as a Muslim.  

About Maimoona Harrington

Maimoona Harrington was born and raised in Pakistan moved to the United States with her family in 2008. She is married and a mother of two sons. She has a bachelor’s degree in Islamic studies and sociology from Pakistan and a bachelor’s degree in Middle Eastern Studies from United States. Along with her career as an interpreter, translator and monitor she is also an Islamic and Pakistani Culture Adviser.

As a practicing Muslim with the extensive world travel and living in the West, she has devoted herself to spread awareness of Islam as a goodwill gesture. In an effort to do this she started writing from her own personal experiences with religion, beliefs and life in a different culture. She also has special interest in all the religions and how and why they are all important to its followers. Her primary focus is on the co-existence and harmony between all human beings. Her message is to spread peace not division. She strongly believes that if you want to be closer to your creator then love His creation unconditionally and expect nothing in return for He loves us unconditionally and forgives us no matter how sinful we are!

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