can a sunni girl can marry to a shia boy?

The Details of the Question

I am belonging to a sunni family.... the boy who want to marry with me is a shia boy... i want to have clear answer about the marriage of a sunni girl to a shia boy according to islam.... i have seen there are many marriages in which girl is suunni bt boy is shia...... i have told from so many people some of them say marriage is possible bt apart from that some say nikah is not possible........ please do let me know clearly what islam says about that........ so i can take a dicision.

The Answer

Dear Brother / Sister,

Such a marriage may result difference of opinion. So you must be careful.

Shiah are also Muslims. If a shiah calls himself a Muslim and if one does not reject obeying Allah laws, it is allowable to marry him. A Muslim man can only marry a Muslim woman or a woman from the People of the Book. If a shiah woman believes like Muslims believe, it is also permissible to marry her. The difference of the sects does not matter in marriage. It matters whether one is Muslim or not.

Since a Muslim man can only marry a Muslim woman, first we should tell what a Muslim should be like. A Muslim is a person who accepts all basic rules of the religion of Islam and does not reject any of them. Namely, a Muslim is a person who accepts the Islamic rules like Salah (prayers), fasting, Hajj, ablution (wudu), etc and its prohibitions like adultery, alcohol, and interest. Whoever does not accept the things mentioned above or a part of it, he/she cannot be called Muslim and a Muslim cannot marry him or her. If they marry, their marriage is illegitimate. It does matter whether they are Sunni or Shiah.

It means that the criterion of getting married is being a Muslim. Unfortunately, today in our country and abroad, many Muslim women get married to men who are not Muslims without finding out about them and the judgment of Islam regarding the issue and they attract the curse of Allah over themselves.

Is marriage between Shia and Sunni is permissible in Islam?

The First answer: Since a Muslim woman can only marry a Muslim man, we should define “Muslim” first. A Muslim is a person who accepts all definite rulings of  the religion of Islam and does not reject any of them. That is, he is the person who believes in and accepts the orders such as salat (prayer), zakat (obligatory alms), hajj (pilgrimage), wudu (ablution), ghusl (full ablution), etc. and prohibitions such as fornication, alcoholic drinks, interest and so on. However, a person who does not accept all or some of the things specified above is not regarded as a Muslim and marrying him is not permissible. If a marriage has taken place, then that marriage life is illicit. It does not matter whether he is Sunni or Shi’a.

Then, the criterion in marrying is Islam. Unfortunately, many Muslim women within the country or abroad marry non-Muslim men without asking the circumstances and learning Islam’s decision and make themselves deserving of Allah’s curse till doomsday. (Halil GÜNENÇ, Günümüz Meselelerine Fetvalar (Fatwas For the Current Matters) II. 119)

The Second answer: Questions about that issue have been asked and answers have been expected for some time. First of all, I want to specify a particular point.

I will try to answer the question within that concept.

Firstly, we should specify what Alawism (adherence to Shi’a beliefs and practices) is so that we would be successful in making a decision. What is Alawism, really? Well, that is the question we seek an answer for. If we can specify what Alawism is, then the matter is solved and we can answer whether marrying a Shi’a is permissible or not. However, the Alawism concept in our country is not single and clear.

- Alawism cannot be out of the bounds of the Qur’an. It cannot be comprehended in contrast to sunnah. It cannot be interpreted in opposition to the Prophet’s way of living. All religious orders such as salat, sawm (fasting), hajj, zakat take place in Alawism. People claiming the opposite are those who want to use Alawism as a tool to realize their aims. One should not be up to their tricks and should not show respect to people who want to show Alawism outside Islam.

If Alawism is like that, there is no problem. We regard them as our brothers of religion; we even ignore some of their mistakes and deficiencies since we all can have defects and imperfections in our deeds…    
However, if Alawism is not like that but like some people claim it to be… Namely: If salat, sawm and zakat are lacking; and if they regard their worship only as a matter of heart and they deny five daily prayers; and if they fundamentally show disrespect to rightly-guided caliphs of Allah’s Messenger and have the idea of keeping enmity alive by carrying some historical events to present time; especially if they do not accept fard ghusl and they do not consider it right to have full ablution after janabah (the state of a person after sexual intercourse)… then it is not religiously permissible for people who accept those mentioned above and who do not to come together and it is not logically possible for them to set a peaceful marriage and live happily in a lovely manner together. Nowadays, some difficulties occur in getting along with even for people who share the same culture, then to what extent it can be realistic to consider that people from different cultures can carry on a happy family life in peace. Therefore,  I say: “We should first detect how parties consider Alawism!”

If they consider the Qur’an as the holy book fundamentally, if they accept the Qur’an’s meaning is explained in sunnah and if they take Allah’s Messenger’s and his family’s way of living as an example, then there is no difference between us fundamentally. It can be possible to tolerate other differences.

A person who accepts fards is a believer and a person who does not accept them is a denier. Determining it can be possible by meeting and talking. To give judgment before meeting and talking is having prejudice.
I want to indicate another important point:

One who interprets Alawism as within Islam is our coreligionist and who regards it outside Islam is our citizen. We want to live in mutual peace with our citizens. This is a necessity of Islam.

Alawism can not be outside the Qur’an. It cannot be comprehended in contrast to sunnah. It can not be interpreted in opposition to the Prophet’s way of living. All religious orders such as salah, sawm, hajj, zakat take place in Alawism. People claiming the opposite are those who want to use Alawism as a tool to realize their aims. One should not be up to their tricks and should not show respect to people who want to show Alawism outside Islam... It is our duty to love and esteem people whom the Prophet deems worthy to be his son-in-love and father-in-love.

Aile İlmihali, Cihan Yayınları (Catechism for Family, Cihan Publications)


Shias are divided into many categories and most of them expressed ideas outside of the Islamic line.

Shias are divided into 22 sub-sects. These are:

1. Sabaiyyah Sect: The founder of this sect is Abdullah bin Saba. Basis of their beliefs are; Ascribing Uluhiyyat (praying and obeying only to …) to Hazrath Ali (as) and his descendants. They claim that Hazrath Ali (as) is not death, the one who has died was a Satan incognito as Ali (as). Hazrath Ali (as) ascended to heaven. Thunder is his voice; flash of lightening is his scourge’s clatter.

2. Kamiliyyah Sect: According to this sect, Imamate (duties and rank of Imam) is a nur (heavenly light). One other attribute of imam is prophet at the same time. These people claim that sahaba (Companions of Prophet) are unbelievers.

3. Ulyaniyyah Sect: The followers of this sect who pray and obey to Hazrath Ali (as) and to his descendants claim that Hazrath Ali (as) sent Hazrath Mohammad (pbuh) as a messenger.

4. Mughapriyyah Sect: They say that Allah (swt) has a shape of a mortal man and carries a crown, which is made of a heavenly light and believe so many other outdated superstitions that would even amaze Satan himself.

5. Mansuriyyah Sect: “Imams are blameless; prophets are not free from mistakes. Imams are higher in ranks.” They believe such like superstitions and myths.

6. Hatabiyyah Sect: According to them world is eternal. There is no Hell. They do not accept Haram (anything that is prohibited by faith), or Halal (anything that is permissible under Islam).

7. Hashimiyyah Sect: They think of Allah in shape of a human.

8. Numaniyyah Sect: They are also called as Sataniyyah Sect. Just like Hashimiyyah Sect, they think of Allah in shape of a human.

9. Yonusiyyah Sect: They claim that Allah sits on a throne and the angels always see Him.

10. Nasriyyah Sect: They claim that Allah penetrated into Hazrath Ali (as) and his descendants. That is to say they became a united whole.

11. Canahiyyah Sect: They drivel by claiming that Allah’s spirit was with Hazrath Adam and passed to the other Prophets and to the twelve Imam.

12. Gurabiyyah Sect: These sect’s members by defending an opininion of Hazrath Ali’s (as) likeness to Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) claim that Angel Gabriel revealed to Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) by mistake.

13. Zarrariyyah Sect: They believe that all the other attributes of Allah except the Life Attribute came into being afterwards.

14. Zarramiyyah Sect: They say that Imamet came down from Ali (as) to his son Mohammad Hanafi and from him to the others.

15. Mufavizzah Sect: They are in dark by saying that Allah created Prophet Mohammad and he created the heavens and earth and the universe.

16. Badahiyyah Sect: Their situation is much weirder than the others are. They claim that Allah created his creations without thinking of their pasts and futures.

17. Banaiyyah Sect: Just like Nasriyyah Sect they believe in becoming one (Allah and Hazrath Ali and his descendants)

18. Salahiyyah Sect: They are mutazillah (man is the owner of his acts and they negate the effects of fate) in faith, Hanafis (school of the oldest of the four schools of thought or jurisprudence within Sunni Islam. The Hanafi sect named after its founder, Abu Hanifa) in practice.

19. Sulaymaniyyah Sect: They accept Hazrath Abu Bakr’s (as) and Hazrath Omar’s (as) Imamate however reject of their being imam prior to Hazrath Ali.

20. Imamiyyah Sect: According to them, Hazrath Mohammad (pbuh) appointed Hazrath Ali (as) as imam personally and he was the one who can choose the following imams because of Hazrath Mohammad’s will.

21. Garrudiyyah Sect: They claim that the words of our Prophet about Imamet clearly refer to Hazrath Ali (as) and blame Companions of Prophet of being blasphemous.

22. Ismailiyyah Sect: By the followers of this sect under the cover of religion, it had been tried to be founded a kingdom. Under the leadership of Ubaydullah whom was one of the descendants of ibn-i Meymoon it became an Empire spreading from Damascus to Morocco. After 270 years of ruling, it fell in the year 570 (Islamic calendar). These are also called as Batinis.

They, by keeping their imams distinct from others consider them as being approved by the divine enlightenment. According to them, their imams are blameless, they do not make mistakes, and they do not sin. They cannot be responsible for their acts because they know things, which anybody cannot.

It is haram to talk about the Companions unreasonably and offensively. A person who speaks like that is called ahl al-bid’a. It is very dangerous in terms of religion to disdain and insult especially the four caliphs. Those people cannot be called unbelievers but they are not from Ahl as-Sunnah, either.

Imama Ghazali mentioned Rafidis not Shiites in his book “Ihya”, pointing out that they insulted the Companions and added that their belief of “infallible Imam” was wrong. Besides, he stated that he wrote a book called “al-Mustazhari” by making use of the book entitled “Kashful-Asrar wa Hatkul-Astar” written by Qadi Abu Tayyib and that he explained the state of Rafidis there. (see Ihya, 1/489-Shamila)

Ghazali rejected the wrong thoughts of Shiites as all Ahl as-Sunnah scholars did. However, as it is emphasized above, the group that is targeted is Rafidis, one of the extreme groups of Shiite.

What we need to do today is to put forward the brotherhood, which is the common ground of belief, without arguing about the issues that are controversial  for the sake of the goodness of the Islamic world.

The Emergence of Shiism

There appeared quite a new era in the whole of humanity with the Qurans being sent down, which is the greatest torch through the way of Allah. People were rejoicing at embracing the True Religion, which was their souls most natural need. They reached to the Unity from polytheism, to light from darkness, to truth from superstitions, to knowledge from ignorance. The Qurans vital principles took them to both material and spiritual elevation any moment.

In the era of the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), Islam established its absolute sovereignty in Mecca, Medina, and Hijaz and in neighboring lands. The age of ignorance and darkness have been replaced by that of bliss and light.

With the magnificent conquests that were conducted at the times of Abu Bakr and Umar within a short time, the conquest of Syria, Egypt, Iraq, and Persia became successful.

This wonderful expansion caused the enemies of Islam, especially Jews, to increase their envy and hatred against Islam. Jews were horrified in the face of the advancement that Islam enjoyed within such a short period; they were bursting with envy. Furthermore, the conversion of most Jewish religious groups drove them crazy. This rapid and brilliant spread of Islam by all means should have been stopped.

It was quite necessary that the conspiracy, which once was organized against Christians, must be done for Muslims this time. They negotiated the matter and put Ibn-i Sebe on the stage. Abdullah Ibn-i Sebe was the chief rabbi and a master manipulator.

Ibn-i Sebe based his destruction plans on mainly two principles. First, he would prevent the advancement of Islam by causing diversity among Muslims and second, he would seek the ways for a diversity of opinions among Muslims, which would continue until the end of the world by inserting superstitions into the Islamic faith and creed. In order for these two ends to be achieved, he would set up covert groups and through them, he would conduct intense activities that would first debilitate and then obliterate the spiritual ties among Muslims such as the spirit of unity, love, brotherhood. There would be an immediate summing-up the situation just after every stage of mischief- making, the planned goals and received results would be evaluated, there would be new plans to achieve further aims under changing and developing conditions and these plans would be put into practice.

Ibn-i Sebe fully achieved his first goal for he caused disunity and battles within Muslims.

Ibn-i Sebe was approaching his main objective through these inside battles. For his main objective was to have Islam gone corrupt by introducing superstitions into the Islamic creed.

All fighting Believers might have made peace soon and re-set up the Islamic unity by coming together. It was vital that there be a controversy among them, which would continue until the end of the world, and disunite them in respect of faith and divide them into opposing parties. The most important task now to do was to make them swerve from the right way by inserting religious superstitions. The abuse of the love of the Prophets Family was the first thing to resort to by Ibn-i Sebe. He appeared to be the most zealous adherent to the Family of Prophet. He propagated that Ali needed to be incumbent of Caliphate and it was usurped from him unjustly. He attempted to distort the religion of Islam from its creed of Unity, as is the case in Christianity, by rendering Ali and his children (may Allah be pleased with them) so-called A Dynasty of Gods. Finally, a group of people headed by Ibn-i Sebe came before Ali and said to him, You are our God, you are our Lord. Ali had some of them burnt to death. He then decided not to have him burnt fearing that his death would provoke further mischief and weakness since he has many adherents in the army. He exiled him to Medayin, the former centre of government of Persia.

Unfortunately, Medayin was a very appropriate place for Ibn-i Sebes perverted ideas to flourish. Ibn-i Sebe met Kharijites (1) here, who in the past fled from Ali, and found their chief Ibn-i Evfa. Realizing that Ibn-i Evfa was about to take action against Ali, he told him, You cannot defeat Ali with such an action; on the contrary, you will be defeated. When Ibn-i Evfa asked him about his opinion, he said that they could finish him off with three assassins.

After this meeting, they agreed on the assassination of Ali, Muawiya, and Amr Ibnul-Âs (May Allah be pleased with them). To this end, they sent three assassins. Three Companions of the Prophet (PBUH) were to be killed on the seventeenth day of Ramadan while they were performing their morning prayer. Through Divine Determining, Muawiya and Amr Ibnul Âs survived these assassination attempts but the assassin named Ibn-i Mulcem succeeded in wounding Ali with a poisonous sword, which would soon occasion his martyrdom.

Having sent Ibn-i Mulcem on his way to kill Ali (may Allah be pleased with him), Ibn-i Sebe sent Ibn-i Meymoon together with a couple of men of his to the city of Kufa. Ibn-i Meymoon there was to disseminate superstitions such as Ali has never died, he has gone to heavens. He is over the clouds now. Soon he will be back and distribute justice to the whole of the world with his sword

Ibn-i Sebe together with his accomplices laid down the plans of treachery that they would carry out in Persia and they immediately set to work. The social conditions of that time were quite favorable for their putting their plots into practice.

Islam spread through a very large area within such a short time. It was an extraordinarily difficult task for a newly established Islamic state to convey all meanings and subtleties, wisdom and truths to the peoples who recently converted to Islam within such a large geography, and to make those who have different ways of life co-exist in the Islamic melting pot. People were converting to Islam in large numbers. Although this situation gladdened Muslims, but on the other hand, this spiritual dough could not be kneaded properly, Muslims were not brought up as properly as expected of them and consequently Muslims could not reach integrity as desired of them in terms of ideal way of sensing and of understanding. The masses were like uncultivated soil. This situation especially made it deeply felt in Persia.

The new converts were not fully free from their old fallacies. They deemed it rather difficult to embrace the pure, clear, unadulterated truths of Islam as they were which were far from being illusions, falsifications and superstitions since these people had been exposed to the influence of superstitions and false beliefs which dated back hundreds of years. Islam was not truly being comprehended by these pious people and the true religion was not being implanted in hearts and feelings exactly. As a psychological demand, they wished to continue their previous beliefs, customs, and common usages along with Islam. On the other hand, the institution of Caliphate was unable to conduct the services of warning and guidance properly. The service to establish Islam in those places with its all institutions and to remove their suspicions and hesitations was coming to a halt. For Islam spread through a large area, most of the Companions of the Prophet (PBUH) had died inner turmoil, some chose a life of a recluse, and some other were too old to interfere with the social life.

As a result of neglecting this sacred task, these new places remained unowned for a long time. With the first enthusiasm and knowledge they received during the conquest, they could not fully understand the truths with regard to the Quran and faith. Therefore, they did not reach a point to distinguish between true and false, superstition and truth.

A mischief-making society, Jews, achieved to make use of these social conditions.

Another important factor, which made it possible for Ibn-i Sebe to implant his evil ideas in Persia, was the psychological state of the people. Their inner worlds were prevailed by emotions rather than reasoning. Their hearts were vulnerable to myths and superstitions rather than truth. They could not analyze events within a harmony of logic and reasoning.

They were unable to stomach the demolition of their centuries-long dynasties and national prides by Arabs, whom they once were regarding as slaves, also showed great envy in the sense of feelings though not in the sense of reasoning.

Ibn-i Sebe masterfully made use of these factors. He gathered his friends around him and told them: We have just started the war. Know that this is the start of a war among Muslims, which would continue until the end of the world. We shall sanctify Ali and have others to do the same. Sometimes we shall call him god, sometimes prophet, sometimes we shall tell that Caliphate was incumbent on Ali, but Abu Bakr, Umar, and Osman usurped this right of his.

After taking this decision, Ibn-i Sebe and his fellow men commissioned their men around to spread these ideas. These men inculcated people with their lies such as, Ali should have been the Caliph, he and His sons deserve it more than anybody else. This right was usurped from them. Three other caliphates, especially Umar, opposed the will of Allah by usurping this right In order to obey the will of Allah, we should take sides with Ali When these mass suggestions are accepted by the people, going further, they endeavored to insert the incarnation of God, which attributes divinity to human beings, into the Islamic creed. By trying to distort the Islamic belief from its right path, they started to disseminate a belief, which is diametrically opposite to the creed of Unity. The belief of The incarnation of God existed in old religions of Persians. Thus, this false belief enjoyed a quick popularity among them.

First, they attributed divinity to Ali (May Allah be pleased with him). Then they asserted that this divinity passed to his children and consequently there appeared a dynasty of gods in Persia.

On the death of Ali (may Allah be pleased with him) Ibn-i Sebe commented that who died actually was not Ali but a devil taking on his form, he now went up the heavens and made a throne for himself over the clouds, by showing his death in the direction of the incarnation of God.

Eventually Shiism, which was first initiated in Egypt by the establishment of Sebeiyye Sect, started to grow and flourish in Persia. Then there emerged sub-sects out of this, which are more than twenty.

(1) Kharijites: These people are known to be the adversaries of Ali (may Allah be pleased with him). These people disliked the policies of Ali (may Allah be pleased with him) and always exhibited a tough attitude towards him and his rule. Therefore, there always took place controversies between Ali and Kharijites.

Questions on Islam

Was this answer helpful?
Questions on Islam
Subject Categories:
Read 662 times
In order to make a comment, please login or register