Shaking Hands With Opposite Gender


Your hands are dirty, your hands smell, your fingernails are black filthy, some of the reasons we don’t shake peoples hand, how about being modest and looking at what Islam has to say about this? I know some people are already thinking I’m extreme by talking about this, and already have the question going through their mind like how can it be impermissible to shake hands with an opposite gender? When i mean opposite gender i mean a person your not married to ( like a random woman in the workplace or in college or if your a female reading this then obviously a man for you ).

Although some people say its ok and in America its part of the corporate culture, their are others who completely reject it, me trying to be on the safe side, i pass the hand shake, It feels weird shaking a random woman’s hand, i mean check it, we have to lower our gaze, that’s part one, now hand shaking, you are a step in feeling the girl, that’s not real modest, as far as i see it, and what bugs me is that some brothers say its ok as long as you have the right intention and you do it quick, and if it happens then it happens. I don’t know, Islam prohibits any physical contact, and if your going to use culture as a reason to do it, then i have started seeing people kiss and hug to and to them its just “greeting”, so what you going to do you going to take shaking hands to the next level because its normative in our culture? Chill Yo!

My brother in law said instead of shaking a random woman’s hand at the workplace he would take out a pen and they can shake hands holding each side of the pen, pretty funny, but I think I’ll try that, honestly most woman respect when a Muslim guy refuses to shake their hand, i mean of course they will find it strange, but at the end of the day, it will get them thinking about why he doesn’t shake my hand and mash’Allah how modest and respectful he is, they will be astonished but that’s what Islam is about, its about doing certain acts that have wisdom, and you gotta let people know why? because Islam has an answer to everything . I mean its not necessary, you can greet a woman wherever without shaking her hand.

Whats even more surprising is Orthodox Jews are under the same restriction. Orthodox Jews are also not permitted to shake hands with members of the opposite sex. The same is true for Orthodox Hindus. There may indeed be other cultures out there that face similar restrictions.

Mutfti Abdul Rehman Ibn Yusuf says in respond to this issue:

No, it is not permissible to shake hands with women at all. There are many reports from the Prophet Sallallahi alayhi wasallam that he never shook the hands of any women, despite his status as a Prophet. All the allegiance [bay’a] he took was either without holding the hand or with a cloth tied around it. He explicitly informed the women when they extended their hands to him that he did not shake hands with women. [See Muhammad Ibn Sa’d, The Women in Madina, Chapter One: The manner in which the Messenger of Allah received women’s allegiance]

So chill out, just be yourself, be modest, respect everyone, and be on the safe side, Islam always comes first, don’t just do stuff, tell people why you do it, it will make your life easier as well as spread the deen, so remember save your hands for your wife and insh’Allah you will real the realness in following the Sunnah! hope we all become productive members of society..Ameen!

Let me know what you think about this issue?



90 Responses to Shaking Hands With Opposite Gender

  1. genuine_questioner October 16, 2007 at 10:44 pm #


    I don't disagree with what you have said.

    A question, when asked why we don't, we say its becasue we are not allowed to have any physical contact with the opposite gender. When questioned further, its becasue we believe in prevention, i.e. one thing leads to another, i.e. 1st a hand shake, and can 'possibly' lead to other things!!!

    Is my thinking correct?

    • Anonymous October 14, 2009 at 4:04 pm #

      You may believe in prevention, but have you learned of restraint

    • CAGLAR JUAN SINGLETA October 29, 2009 at 1:35 pm #

      HELLO.Alot of times,but not alaways,not shaking hands does mean either racism or prejudiced.

      • Al-Harbi November 8, 2009 at 9:11 am #

        uh…we're not thinking along those lines. In Islam racism is condemned as well as ranks and status etc.

      • CAGLAR SINGLETARY August 12, 2010 at 9:11 am #








        DEADLIFTS=3X275,6X175,7X13AT165LBS….POSTSCRIPT=my cousin said that if conscience bothers them about not shaking hands,they are usually either racially or a degree of non-race prejudice against you,race does not matter.-!ALLAH,THANKS FOR MY COUSIN!_

    • Fulan August 2, 2011 at 5:53 am #

      When questioned, I say it's all about modesty. I've never had to explain further, but if I did, this is how I'd explain it: For example, in western culture, hand shakes are acceptable between strangers of opposite gender. Are hugs generally acceptable? it's iffy, generally no. Is touching someone's neck or legs acceptable? Absolutely not. If you ask why? they'd say those parts are too private, it's beyond the lines of modesty, or you'd be invading the person's space… etc. Well, for muslims, hands are included in that personal space or line of modesty… etc. And Allah knows best.

  2. mahmud October 17, 2007 at 4:07 am #

    I was invited to meet the parents fo a friend. The mother , when she sees me for the first time, takes out her hand and says I know muslims should not, I shook hands with her because she was old enough to be my mother and she elooked my mothers age.

    when I left, she did the same, so I smiled and shook hands with her.

  3. MR October 17, 2007 at 4:22 am #

    This is something very hard for many Muslim men and women who work in the corporate world. May Allah (swt) make it easy for us all.

  4. Umm Layth October 17, 2007 at 4:27 am #

    If you inform the people before you get so involved with the job, in a very nice manner, it shouldn't be such a big deal. Of course, there are exceptions of people who do make a big deal out of nothing. But it's quite surprising how well people take it if we simply are honest, upfront, and stick to our principles.

  5. MR October 17, 2007 at 4:43 am #

    You should also read these:

    “Is it allowable for men and women [who are eligible to marry] to shake hands sometimes?” – Sh. Bin Bayyah

    <a>Dr. Yusuf al-Qaradawi: Shaking Hands With a Non-Mahram – Sh. Yusuf al-Qaradawi

  6. Saad October 17, 2007 at 5:33 am #

    Jazakullah Brother Mr and Umm layth for your insights…will check out the article…

  7. Umm Zaid October 17, 2007 at 5:59 am #

    Salaam 'Alaikum

    One suggestion I read once was for men and women to simply say, "I'm sorry, but I don't shake hands for religious / spiritual reasons," while slightly inclining their head and placing their hand over their heart (which is a trad'l way of greeting others in any case). Ya'ani, if you're humble and soft tongued about it (vs. being harsh or making a woman feel like an "untouchable"), then any problem they have with it is probably a problem with Islam itself, ykwim?

  8. Umm Zaid October 17, 2007 at 6:02 am #

    Salaam 'Alaikum

    I forgot to say that when I read this above suggestion, the brothers and sisters who did this said that they got universally positive responses from colleagues.

  9. Saad October 17, 2007 at 1:24 pm #

    Genuine Questioner, Yea Alhumduillah I agree with what you have stated, its about prevention, and Islam is strange, We are strange, and its all good……most people would agree with us, and for those who don't they still probably do inside, but i don't know, too much ego!

  10. H. Ahmed October 17, 2007 at 4:14 pm #

    Check out those links MR provided earlier: Very interesting. And these arent "liberal scholars", these are two shaykhs are probably two of the most knowledge and wisdom-filled scholars who understand life in the west better than most "traditional scholars".

    The Question:

    “Is it allowable for men and women [who are eligible to marry] to shake hands sometimes?”

    The Answer:

    “The origin [of this ruling] is that a man is not allowed to shake hands with a woman [who he is eligible to marry and vice versa]. However, if she is an elderly woman then the school of Abi Hanifa [may Allah have mercy upon him] considered shaking hands with her permissible. Perhaps, the questioner will state that, “By not shaking a woman’s hand it could lead to hardship or shared ill feelings and so forth?” If not shaking hands will lead to the actuality of those fears, then it is allowable to shake hands as long as there is no evil feelings or affection for the woman [and vice versa]. And if the opposite holds true, then it is not allowed to do so.

    Dr. Abdullah bin Bayyah

    & Shaykh Yusuf Al-Qardawi:

    "…What I conclude from the aforementioned narrations is that the mere touching is not haram. So, if there exists reasons for mixing as that between the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) and Umm Hiram and Umm Sulaim and there is no fear of fitnah, then there is nothing wrong with shaking hands…"

  11. Bilal October 18, 2007 at 12:31 pm #

    Salaam, I just found your blog recently and when I saw this topic I was like, wow, because I had a rough experience trying to resolve an issue involving High School graduation a few months back. The principal shakes your hand in front of the whole audience while you walk up to pick your diploma. I e-mailed her saying since I am a Muslim, it is an act of modesty that I do not shake hands with the opposite gender, and that I didn't mean to offend anyone. I didn't recieve a reply.

    I went to a school in Nashville, TN and my school had a good amount of Muslims (Kurdish), and there was also a Kurdish security guard. The principal (woman) sent him and he attempted to get me to go ahead and shake her hand, saying we live in America, etc. and how he and his wife do it all the time! I said I would not. The issue shouldn't be a big one, and they definitely made it one. I asked him what he did for Jum'ah prayers and he said he would go sometimes and not other times, because she respected him and he didn't want make a bad impression, etc. What I have learned that no matter what, you do not subordinate the deen for anyone. You don't offend anyone, yet do not let anyone take control of you as well. For example, if you get a job, you mention that you can work any days of the week etc., yet from 12:00 – 2:00 PM on Fridays, you have to go to Jum'ah.

    The issue actually lasted about 2 months, and my Government teacher got involved. He said he respected me since I was one of his better students (Alhamdullilah), and he helped me out.

    Anyways, there is still a large part to this escalated issue, but they worked it out and on Graduation I walked onto the platform and she simply handed me my diploma and I walked off.

    • OmahaMuslim May 1, 2010 at 5:13 pm #

      It's amazing how people would rather disprespect Allah. Good job holding your ground.

    • Fulan August 2, 2011 at 6:19 am #

      Good job man. May Allah keep you on the straight path, and guide more of the muslim youth to be like you

  12. Under Cover Sister October 21, 2007 at 10:03 am #

    salam bro.

    well said. May Allah reward you for your efforts.

    better safe than sorry.

  13. hash December 20, 2007 at 4:49 pm #

    i think we have to stop viewing women as sexual objects

  14. SS December 23, 2007 at 8:28 pm #

    There are instances where the Prophet shook hands with women (see: Sh. Qaradawi). In fact, he allowed a slave he once met to hold him by his hand and take him to meet someone.

    I'm not saying that we should go shoving our hands into people and shaking hands unnecessarily, but with the right intention, and necessity, I don't see how this can be sinful act.

    Allah knows best.

    • OmahaMuslim May 1, 2010 at 5:15 pm #

      Please bring proof with your statements. Sheikh Qaradawi is not an authentic soure, but I'm sure if he made such a statement he would provide a source. It would be best to use that source than to use him.

  15. Bedtz June 9, 2008 at 11:36 pm #


    If I could just add on.

    During my graduation, the prof giving out the certificates was a male and I would have to shake hands with him right?

    Interestingly, the organizing comm actually arranged for something like this… those who do not want to shake hands holds a red-coloured notebook in the other hand so that the prof knows who to shake hands with or not. Cool, eh?

    I guess it all boils down to doing something about it and informing non-Muslims about our beliefs.

    On a personal level, I agree it is best to avoid shaking hands. But there have been occassions where I had to shake hands briefly and it happened so fast that I didn't have time to stop and avoid.

    But as long as I know my intentions are right, I'm not really worried about it.

    Coz, every act that we do is based upon our intention.


  16. My opinion is better January 23, 2009 at 9:44 am #

    So, in other words, you muslims have so little self control and such animalistic feelings that you just know shaking a woman's hand will lead to sex? "We do not allow physical contact because one thing will lead to another" you said. What is wrong with you? Personally, I would NOT respect anyone's decision to not shake my hand, I think it is rude and primitive. I am the master of my own body and mind and I KNOW shaking a man's hand won't make "one thing lead to the other" You need to get a grip, honestly. Don't expect to get very far in the buiseness world.

    I'm very glad my community accepts a pat on the back, a high five, a hand shake, a hug and even a kiss on the cheek knowing there's nothing wrong with that. We can draw the line, we don't need to avoid touching to prevent anything, we can do that with free will.

    But whatever, to each his own stupid ideas.

    • Proud_Muslimah March 17, 2010 at 9:31 am #

      Yeah right! You said " i am the master of my own body and mind"..sure that is why you have the highest rate of AID's and divorce in the world.. If you look it up by being "muslim who have no self control" we dont need DNA to prove who our fathers are. And your are talking about a persons PERSONAL choice to not shake your hand as being rude?? What are you being right now?? When someone chooses not to shake another persons hand it is out of respect but if you took the time to read the article above and LISTEN to what others have to say you would know that!

      • Disturbed May 13, 2010 at 2:43 am #

        The difference between the disbelievers and the believers is that we have faith. With that faith we SHOULD have that self control. Shaking hands will lead to NOTHING unless you want it to. You must CONTROL yourself with your morality. Just as you are able to control your anger and restrain yourself, so too can you control your desires. It is the iman that gives you that control. If you CAN'T EVEN SHAKE HANDS you have NO IMAN!!! Is that what you're saying?

        There's NO excuse for NOT shaking hands unless you're a pervert. And yes you ARE RUDE when you refuse. You openly state your sick thinking. By NOT shaking hands you present yourself as a pervert. That is the only reason why you would refuse (see quran/hadith evidence).

        But don't speak for us all who can act in a civil manner with pure intentions just because you're a pervert. I think Muslims give themselves far to little credit when it comes to self control and lock themselves out of this world.

        This construct and notion of complete segregation of sexes is an ABOMINATION of the religion. Islam is a very progressive religion that has been hijacked by extreme interpretations that have become accepted mainstream practice.

        Very sad.

        • Fulan August 2, 2011 at 6:31 am #

          You say that you are a believer and "Islam is a very progressive religion…" so, I'm going to assume you're a Muslim. We know, as muslims, for a fact that the Prophet (s) refused to shake hands with women. We are also told by our Creator to "lower our gaze and guard our private parts." Allah mentions the two extremes of interaction between opposite genders in the prohibition (mere looking and the ultimate act of adultery/fornication). So, if we humans can use our brains and think for a second, we'd come to the conclusion that if the 2 extremes are prohibited, everything in between is also prohibited… goes w/out saying.

          I suggest you stop speaking for Islam and do some reading and thinking

  17. Bilal February 14, 2009 at 7:57 pm #

    In response to the post before mine… You might want to do some research before simply stating "you muslims have so little self control and such animalistic feelings that you just know shaking a woman’s hand will lead to sex?"

    Orthodox Jews also practice this.

  18. Bilal February 14, 2009 at 7:59 pm #

    Wait, actually please re-read the article above! It seems you have missed the text in bold.

  19. My opinion is better February 15, 2009 at 12:45 pm #

    Jews are just as stupid as muslims.

    Maybe you're thinking I'm jewish. I'm not.

    The only difference between judaism and islam is I've not read about jewish suicide bombers blowing up london underground trains and buses.

  20. R5 March 27, 2009 at 8:58 pm #

    But I'm sure you HAVE read about Jews killing thousands of innocent children and women and depriving a whole nation of food, water, aid, and everyday necessities causing a humanitarian crisis in Palestine, notably and ethnic cleansing.

  21. My opinion is better April 1, 2009 at 2:51 pm #

    If Hamas wants to hide in a populated town, and the people refuse to leave a battle zone, it's their fault for getting slaughtered like idiots. Any military strategist knows the first thing you do when there's any form of engagement is evacuate everyone. Hamas hides in schools, hospitals, markets and towns so they can blame the jews for killing innocent women and children. But I don't feel bad for them, because they welcome them, they jsut want to be martyrs.

    In any case, I'm not jewish and I don't give a fuck about them. It makes me laugh how you all think of Hitler as a hero, even though he also killed many muslims. Both your religions rule your way of life, and that's plain sad. Go eat some ham, pigshit.

  22. The MV April 1, 2009 at 6:45 pm #

    We dont think killers as a hero, you piece of trash.

  23. My opinion is better April 2, 2009 at 7:16 am #

    Well you could have fooled me!!

  24. Scotland. April 20, 2009 at 3:36 pm #

    The comment directly above me.

    Seriously. Get a grip. You seem like those people who are brain-washed by watching all the biased media. Oh great.

    Do your research before you say anything as such. I mean proper research. Go find out the real reasons as to why Muslims dont shake hands with the opposite sex.

    If you had done that then you would not have come up with comments as such.

    Anyways in regards to the article. Great and i agree. Can be hard at time living in a western state however thats part of our personal jihad, no one said it's going to be easy. Their are always people who are going to have a negative view on certain things no matter how much time we spend correcting them.

  25. Kareem April 22, 2009 at 2:57 am #

    I only shake hands with the opposite gender if the sister or female extends her hands first, otherwise I don't intialize it out of modesty and my etiquette as a Muslim.

  26. Muslimah July 24, 2009 at 12:33 pm #

    Assalamu alaikum,

    Brothers and sisters, do your best as to never shake hands with the opposite gender whatever happens and just as was mentioned in the article:

    'Islam always comes first'.

    May Allah keep us in the right bath always, ameen.

  27. Anonymous August 5, 2009 at 6:30 am #


    The article is great brother saad. Quick question, who is this psycho ass "my opinion is better than yours" In reference to her response:

    Also her saying "The only difference between judaism and islam is I’ve not read about jewish suicide bombers blowing up london underground trains and buses."

    MUSLIMS ARE NOT TERRORISTS. YOU BITCH ASS PPL MAKE THEM A TERRORIST. If you are an American you should know damn well, your govt makes the rules yet doesnt follow its own rules. Before you say anything else about Muslims you better shut your FUCKING MOUTH RIGHT THERE. ALSO GET ONE THING STRAIGHT THROUGH YOUR MIND.

    Like one of the brothers said above" you are brain washed by the biased media" You definately are because one thing said SO MANY TIMES begins to settles in the mind and it happened to you. You been listening to the phrase too much "Muslims are terrorists" Dont watch tv.. Go have SEX like you do everyday all day.

  28. My opinion is better August 5, 2009 at 9:10 am #

    I suppose it was the jews who crashed two airplanes into the twin towers then?

    Obviously not all muslims are terrorists. But don't you deny there aren't any muslim terrorists. And so you know, I'm not American, I'm Iranian.

    • Zahra October 13, 2010 at 10:01 am #

      Youre lying. Youre not Iranian. There is culture in words and tone. If youre going to post bull, at least have the heart to represent yourself as is.

    • Khany March 20, 2011 at 12:58 am #

      What do you call the state of Israel then?

    • Karen March 24, 2011 at 11:31 am #

      There are PEOPLE who are terrorists, only some of whom happen to be Muslim. There are terrorists from every part of the world, in every religion and culture – The Westboro Baptist Church, the Irish Republican Army, the KKK – these are terrorists just as much as the ones on 9/11. Yes there are terrorists who are Muslim, but lets keep in mind that they are terrorists first and Muslims second – every Muslim I know does not believe in killing in the name of God. It is not right to group people together and look at Muslims in a negative way just because of the actions of 1% of Islam.

    • neufneuf August 3, 2011 at 11:48 am #

      so what?

      there are "terrorists" in all religions and cultures, not just Islam.

      and, just because these people happen to be Muslim, it doesn't mean Islam told them to do so, or that all Muslims are the same way.

  29. Saad August 5, 2009 at 12:10 pm #

    Alright, no more unnecessary comments.

    Please keep the discussion peaceful and try to avoid uneducated responses.

    It's important we keep our cool, respect other visitors.

    Please remember, you can't win people over to your side by being angry, dissing them out, so on and so fourth.

    People won't be attracted to your beliefs from what you say intellectually, but importantly from your actions, etiquette's, and your dealings. Because this is what others see first, and this is what Islam teaches us.

    So as Muslims we need to represent ourselves in accordance to the Teachings and Principles laid down by Allah swt and his beloved Prophet (s).

    It's easy to make claims, but until we study our tradition we can't implement it.


  30. Anonymous August 5, 2009 at 6:47 pm #

    Brother Saad, I cant believe u deleted my comment above.

    I didnt say it out of anger.It was the truth.

  31. Saad August 5, 2009 at 7:11 pm #


    Brother Anonymous, I can't pass comments to that degree, especially if you haven't even identified yourself, sorry.

  32. Saadia August 6, 2009 at 6:21 am #

    OK now I have identified myself.

  33. Saad August 6, 2009 at 12:20 pm #

    Go ahead, make your educated responses.

  34. Saadia August 6, 2009 at 5:59 pm #

    educated responses? Brother Saad, I already did but you took them down. By the way even you don't get too excited by writing those articles. You have the knowledge good, doesn't mean you can put other people down. Can you or does your (our) religion allows you to do that? Does your religion allow you to hurt someone impulsively? No definately not, so make sure next time yo don't do that.

    Just because you are good at writing doesn't mean nothing can compare you. No one else in the world writes better than you? Damn sure there are people who THINK better than you, who WRITE better than you, who RESPECT women better than you ETC. Next time don't do that.

    Don't even bother writing back to this comment. No way I am going to waste my time writing back on one so called "Brother"

    May Allah guide you and us all. Ameen

    • Amatullah March 5, 2011 at 6:34 am #

      Assalamu 3alaykom

      May peace be upon you all

      I understand your anger when you read insults to Islam, but let's discuss it.

      I may not be the suitable one to give advice, but please read what I need to say; if it's of any use to you follow it so that we can share the Thawab, if not, ignore it and forgive me for any annoyance.

      The Prophet pbuh taught us good manners as he taught us prayer and fasting. It hurts me to hear muslim brothers or sisters using words, that the Prophet wouldn't have used, to emphasize a point. We must all remember that Allah hears every word we say, and before the person we're arguing with hears those words, Allah hears them. We must watch out what our tongues say, I say that to myself as well, so that we don't say something that Allah hates to hear.

      After all, we muslims are brothers and sisters. We are one Ummah that worships Allah. We should not give in to Shaytan's attempts to make us enemies. We should not act out of prejudice. We should give our brothers the benefit of doubt. Maybe they didn't mean it, maybe they meant good. Maybe they were aiming for the good that we don't see, or pushing away evil that we don't know. We should be very cautious about the image non-muslims get about Islam when dealing with us. If they did wrong, we don't do wrong. After all, we are followers of the Prophet pbuh who was sent as mercy to the world.

      I'm sorry again for any annoyance; it's from myself. As for any good it's from Allah. Alhamdulillah.

      Peace be upon you brothers and sisters in Islam.

      Assalamu alaykom.

  35. Saad August 6, 2009 at 6:12 pm #

    Ameen to your dua's.

    Your right their are people who write and think better than me, I'm just a ordinary student of knowledge.

    If I offended you then please refer to the following hadith especially on this blessed night.

    Those who show mercy to their fellow beings will be shown mercy by the Merciful Lord. So, show mercy to those on the earth, and He Who is in the heaven will show mercy to you.” (At-Tirmidhi)

    May Allah swt forgives us and accept our dua's, Ameen!

  36. Saadia August 6, 2009 at 6:49 pm #

    How about if you don't teach me this ISLAM. I probably know more than you do. May Allah forgive us all, but as far as I know Allah doesn't forgive those who hurt other people even "impulsively"

    I am not arguing with you or trying to be rude. Just going along with the flow. Sorry to bother if I have done so. Apperciate your time and effort.


    • sister September 13, 2009 at 1:44 pm #

      Assalamu Alaikum sis Saadia

      i just wanted to say, you wrote that "Allah doesn’t forgive those who hurt other people even “impulsively”

      please sis, dont think Allah is that powerless that he wont be able to forgive someone, Allah will forgive anyone who repents. the ONLY thing Allah will not forgive is shirk (i you die in the state of commiting) shirk


  37. BananaPancakes August 7, 2009 at 10:57 am #

    "My Opinion Is Better Than Yours":

    You do well as a troll. You get people riled up and everything, which is the total purpose.

    Everybody else checking out these articles: DON'T FEED THE TROLL! She/He is probably a bored junior high school student who has nothing better to do with her/his life, so they come on websites like this and take the proverbial piss. S'all good. If you actually get angry at the random BS they spew, they're just doing their job. If you ignore them, they will be dejected as a troll and leave the site, hanging their head in shame at a job very poorly executed.

    Anyhow, love this website, love the articles. Just found it today! On that note, I'm Canadian, and I know it's different in the US, but when I graduated high school last year, the school Principle let everyone know during rehearsals that if you're religion/belief system forbade you from shaking hands with him then just clutch them while walking past him on the stage and he'll get the hint instead of reaching his hand out and looking like a fool! I thought that was honorable of him. I think every high school principle had that system going actually…Anyways, it doesn't just apply to Islam, Judaism and some forms of Hinduism too, which just goes to show that lot's of cultures practice modesty.


  38. BananaPancakes August 7, 2009 at 11:00 am #


    My bad.

  39. Anonymous August 29, 2009 at 3:00 pm #

    LOL LOL LOL…ain't gana dedicate a special msg to any1 in particular yeh…but one ting those who came here to critize and try and create bullshit are a waste of space…think there all it…these ppl need to fix up man proper…i honestly feel 4u man, trust…stupid shamefull loosers…

    and to ma sis/bro's in Islam don't let uneducated fools get the best out of you…work for Allah iA will all enter paradise…we will all come forward to Allah one day…leave it for then…those who are arrogant will be punished…don't retaliate…j/k

  40. awakening89 September 14, 2009 at 9:25 am #

    Asalamualaykum, just want to thank the author of this article for taking time out to write this just so that he could benefit other Muslims.

    Every site that I visit and I see people making comments but in most cases I wouldn't know which one of them is a Muslim unless they identified themselves, I honestly would not be able to tell what faith they belong to. Muslims need more training on how to respond to the comments of other people, if theres a rude comment then Muslims tend to reply in even a worse way then they kuffar.

    We also need to be appreciative towards other people Rasulullah saw said: "He who does not thank people, does not thank Allah." (Ahmad, Tirmidhi) WHY do we always feel the need to find negatives in others, if we spent that time fixing up ourselves life would be much easier and better.

    Thinking that you know more than the other shows arrogance and arrogance destroys your emaan, we can never know enough of this religion, so one might have a better understanding of one aspect of this deen then the other. If someone is teaching you Islam with aunthentic proofs than accpet it, telling eachother that dont teach me I know better than you! or you should know better etc is nonsense, can you tell me which sahaba told the other one I know better than you so dont teach me!…I can go to the Prophet and learn myself etc etc? well is there any proof? no because this is not what their aim was, even with our great Imams they had to do research by asking other people to find information and collect hadiths etc for us, if they had sat there thinking who you tellin me? I know better than you! then we wouldnt have in hand what we have now.

    So please I just want all Muslims to STOP wasting their own and other peoples time and maybe work together to make a difference, this is a trick of shaytan so try and escape from arguing for the sake of Allah and put ego's to one side.

    "…anybody who believes in Allah and the Last Day should talk what is good or keep quiet." Sahih Al-Bukhari, Volume 8, Number 47

    "I guarantee a house in Jannah for one who gives up arguing, even if he is in the right; and I guarantee a home in the middle of Jannah for one who abandons lying even for the sake of fun; and I guarantee a house in the highest part of Jannahfor one who has good manners.''[Abu Dawud]

    Belated Ramadhan Mubarak and eid mubarak in advance, may Allah shower His rahma on the Muslims and guide us all to the straight path and make us of he saliheen ameen


  41. Saiful Mollah October 14, 2009 at 7:41 pm #

    assalamu aliakum, that was well-said previous brother. when i was reading this page of comments i got sad, i was like damn how did this happen to us Muslims, the comments just turned kinda hostile, not talking 2 any1 particular. i mean i have also have enormous problems and nobody is perfect, but these comments mad me sad. i a 17 year old who acts like any other teenager but recently i've trying to become a better Muslim. when these comments became disses at each other, i was ashamed to see brothers and sisters act like this. however anyways, for the person that strongly voiced her opinion, i would just like to say that please state your opinions without offending any1, it doesn't matter what you believe being polite is fundamental in every culture. i don't think any1's god likes people who start arguments and people who also partake in them, i mean u can have discussions, but please don't argue and anger one another. i know about this, i used talk like this and would win, but i would also feel bad when i thought about later on during the day. every1 needs to be more open-minded. if another belief or religion doesn't agree with our beliefs, then we cannot use force do bend them towards our will, it is forbidden. what the Taliban and terrorists have done is completely wrong and they cannot be considered Muslim even if they believe in Allah.

  42. AMATOU ALLAH October 16, 2009 at 6:12 am #

    i toltal share your opinion brother

    please let s give a great image of islam and each one shoud respect the other

    thanks for your advice for hands shaking am working for a multinational company and will have a visit of a VIp manager and i have just sent a mail to say i dont shake hands for religious reasons

  43. muslim sis November 3, 2009 at 8:57 pm #

    i hate when ppl argue or get into fights. ithink every1 should get alone.but this hand shaking thing once i went to my family doc and she ask why one muslim bro wouldn't shake hands with her.she thought she stunk or something.i didn't know wat to tell the doc i just told her i didn't know why tht men wouldn't want to shake hands with u.

  44. Mauroof May 1, 2010 at 3:13 pm #

    My friend was asking questions regarding hand shake with men to women.

    Alhamdhulilah I found good answers here.

  45. Naeema May 4, 2010 at 8:44 pm #

    Thank you for the wonderful article. It was well done and I really enjoyed your humor and advice. I'm only sorry some of the posts are….[halirious, to put it kindly].

    I used to not touch guys, then I recently found out it was okay. All i can ask is may allah forgive my sins and give me the strength as a young muslim in NYC. Ameen.

  46. amatullah92 May 17, 2010 at 9:13 pm #

    Assalamu alaikum wa rahamatullah, I recently found the website from random searches of 'muslim blog sites' and I must say Alhamdulillah I came across 'Chill yo Islam yo'. MashaAllah to the writer and great aritcle.Its so informational! JazakAllah khayr may Allah take you from strength to strength. May He also make it easy for you and us all. Ameen. Even though I attend a college where majority are muslims they still shake hands with the opposite sex but I considered maybe not everyone knows and so I try to explain to some of them. and also since I found this would just share the site inshaAllah. May Allah continue to guide us onto the right path ameen.

    @awakening89 jazakAllah khayr, you said it all!

  47. Mysi Anne June 8, 2010 at 2:31 am #

    I'm visiting Lebanon right now and have come across many many different "levels" of Muslims… Some shake hands, some even kiss faces (only women to other women?)and some do not shake hands at all. It is very confusing as an American in a country that is so different than mine, but it is so interesting and fun to learn and understand. The first time a man would not shake my hand, I was confused and upset… I thought it was because women are considered to be lower creatures than men. After talking to other people about it and reading articles online, I realized this isn't the case. Now, I simply hesitate until someone initiates a handshake or other form of greeting with me.

    Beirut and the surrounding areas are amazing because of the peace between Christians and Muslims here. I am neither (I am agnostic) but I find the beliefs to be absolutely beautiful… and I will miss the people here when I go home. I will also miss the Call To Prayer, as I find it to be soothing and lovely.

    Anyone who says that Muslims are terrorists or rude or perverts has spent no real time socializing or conversing with Muslims. I spent an entire evening with a wonderful family, drinking non-alcoholic beverages and smoking nargileh and attempting to understand each other in broken english and arabic, and laughing until our stomachs hurt. By the end of the evening, they told me to consider their house my house and to come back every year. And I will.

    • Ahmad October 13, 2010 at 3:06 am #

      i was reading your post, and what got me interested is that i'm from lebanon, i live and work in beirut.

      lebanese are a pretty diverse population, from conservatives to religious to progressive and so on.

      what got me really interested in replying to you is that i would love if you would give me the chance to talk about religion (i reaplize you're agnostic, yet maybe i can help out… i've had past experiences that were good)

      i hope brother saad won't erase my post because i placed my email, so here it is

      hope you'll contact me as soon as possible

      wa assalam

  48. paul July 13, 2010 at 3:51 pm #

    if you don;t shake hands with a woman BECAUSE she's a woman then you are being sexist. It means you are treating people differently because of how they were born.

    The first key basic question is… What's wrong with women? Why do they have to wear different cloths, be accompanied by a male (??), be treated less under the law? How can this be seen as anything but hatred toward woman? The only they did for all this was to be born a woman!

    The second key basic question is…what's wrong with sex? So what if people have sex? SO what if people have sexual feelings toward woman they aren't related to? who the hell made that Harem anyway? Imagine if people could just relax and enjoy consensual sex whenever they wanted. wouldn't that be great?

    The Islamist rules (Sura #4 or whatever) against women and sex have unleashed a terrible tragedy onto the world. We are forgetting to enjoy each other.

  49. Andi September 10, 2010 at 11:08 am #

    it's so hard avoiding this in the west, as it's such a basic part of society! And avoiding it is so hard!

    But for those who still aren't convinced of the fitna, here's an example of the wisdom of Allah s w t:

    In latin america, when a man wants to let a woman know he would like to have sex with her, he shakes her hand and uses his middle finger to tickle her palm.

    How much farther away from hayyah can you get? and yet, this starts with a simple handshake.

  50. Ziad September 14, 2010 at 9:06 am #

    "Let me know what you think about this issue?"

    It's really not an issue. Islam made it one.

  51. ~Muslimah~ March 8, 2011 at 4:46 pm #

    Salamo Alaikom Wr,Wb

    I'm happy with the choice of topic here, because many Muslims don't like to talk about this topic. It's obviously haram to shake hands with a non-mahram. I've had both Muslims, and non-Muslims put their hand out to shake, but I told them I couldn't because of relgion purpose. They weren't surprised, but rather they felt like they were being rude. I told them not to worry, and that it's alright because many people don't know.

    I think it's kind of upsetting that many Muslims choose to do it, and pretend like "Oh it was quick, I wont do it again." This is not right, cuz' many Muslims want to fit in or not upset their fellow non-Muslims. I advise my Muslim brothers and sisters to rethink the next time they run into a non-mahram that puts their hand out to shake, cuz' little things like that may seem ok, and that will lead to greater things that people will consider "ok" too.

  52. Khany March 20, 2011 at 12:56 am #

    Is it ok to shake hands with a mehram?

  53. Karen March 24, 2011 at 11:24 am #

    Very interesting! thank you for the information. Being a woman, I don't think it's weird at all – I think it's very respectful. 🙂

  54. thanaya April 27, 2011 at 11:55 pm #

    salaams brother! may Allah swt help you serve deen and reward you tremendously, ameen! im impressed by your efforts MA! keep up the good work IA!

  55. Hijr June 17, 2011 at 5:25 pm #

    Sala. what about female muslim doctors and her patients? I sometimes have difficulties in avoiding handshakes with my patients especially the elderly one.

  56. samra June 24, 2011 at 8:02 am #

    Assalam-o-Alaikum all,

    It's a really good chain, and an topic on which even some of my Muslim friends are doubtful.

    But I heard such a nice thing about it once…..

    you see its so simple – you cant reach the top of a stair case, without stepping on the first step so similarly when you do a big sin, you don't do it all of a sudden…there's a good deal of programming that is done before that…

    and Allah stops us from stepping on that very first step…i.e. "Lower your gaze". Once you start disobeying it, you will start thinking about the second one…and then the third one and it is how this leads to fitna or the bigger sin…

    May Allah give us the strength to stand straight in the face of all atrocities and save our Iman

  57. Muslim Marriage Even June 26, 2011 at 8:59 am #

    I think that the best greeting is to give your Salams

  58. Maryum June 27, 2011 at 12:47 pm #

    i like your article…its nice. i do believe n practice this in my life but some people use it against us and declare Muslims as fundamentalist

  59. Fulan August 2, 2011 at 5:42 am #

    When I first started avoiding hand shakes w/women (I'm a dude), the situation got extremely awkward as I didn't know what to say… especially with women I knew already and regularly shook hands with.

    I tried "I'm sorry, I don't shake hands with women… it's for religious reasons" and they looked offended (I'm assuming they thought Islam says women are dirty or something). Then I heard this phrase to say when a woman extends her hand: "Sorry, but I don't have the right to touch you!" It sounded beautiful when I heard it but it seemed to offend women even more that I can't even 'touch' them now. The philosophy behind it (that random men don't have the right to touch you) doesn't seem to click right away and only the word 'touch' sticks out and they look offended and it gets reeeally awkward.

    What finally worked for me is to say "I'm sorry, I don't shake hands with the opposite gender. It's for religious reasons" It seems to click with them right away when I mention 'opposite gender' as opposed to 'women'. In fact, I once said this to a male co-worker in case he introduces me to a lady. Right away he asked, "so, if I was to meet your wife, I shouldn't shake her hand?"

    I've also said "I avoid physical contact w/the opposite gender"

  60. neufneuf August 3, 2011 at 11:59 am #

    As a sister, I usually find myself in a awkward position, because usually its the male who extends their hand first.

    At first, I would just politly (as politly as possible I guess) ignore the hand and greet them with a simple smile and "Good Morning" or so, but after a while I felt guilty for not providing an explanation.

    So now its "I avoid physical contact with the opposite gender" and they (USUALLY) understand. Some are surprised since I'm younger (only in high school), but you should follow the rules as soon as you understand them and why you should follow them.

    I know non-Muslims give much importance to the handshake, but a simple statement, I've seen, easily compensates for that. Once again, being as polite as possible is also good idea.

    Also, I love the pen idea brother! haha 😀

  61. Annam C August 6, 2011 at 2:43 pm #

    1. Trolls suck

    2. THANK YOU! jazakAllah khair, like madd much!! i have been avoiding shaking hands with other dudes for a while, but I was always iffy about it. not sure if islam really forbade it or not. now, alhumdulillah, I can approach these situations with confidence. alhumdulillah for being guided to this page… in any professional setting, or even when casually greeting men (someone introduces themselves, asks about my deen) it gets sooo awkward when I have to turn down handshakes. its usually not embarrassing for me anymore, alhumdulillah, but I always feel guilty for leaving a dude hanging in public. must be embarrassing for him, or a blow to the ego for sure. form my experience tho, most people tend to be understanding. and yeah, I usually use phrases like those mentioned by the sister and brother in the comments just above.


  62. Saad August 7, 2011 at 9:15 pm #

    Thanks everyone for reading the article! Appreciate you all taking out time and leaving your comments as well. I think as more and more Muslims (both men and women) go about their professional life based on Sunnah practices and it becomes normative/more popular, then that reaction from non muslims won't be there as much as it is right now. We're still a minority here in the west but that will eventually change insh'Allah. Definitely It gets very difficult for all of us still, speaking for myself first. Especially since this situation arises suddenly, but I guess the more we train ourselves and keep conscious of it before HAND (haha) then we'll be able to avoid it cool and calmly. You can only be more safe and comfortable when you follow the Sunnah, and Subhan'Allah anytime a sunnah is revived the award is immense and we know that it's definitely opens the door for daw'ah. May Allah swt make it easy for us all, Ameen.

  63. BB August 8, 2011 at 3:53 am #

    As all,

    Do you have any advice on what to say during hand shaking situations? What has worked for all of you? I really liked the Im sorry, I dont shake hands with opposite gender of respect, modesty and religious reason.

    Please keep posting so we all may learn more!


  64. Annam C August 8, 2011 at 11:54 am #


    @bro saad: ameen

    @BB: there are suggestions a few comments above yours.

    Also, I was thinking about this after going to a few iftaaris, and it has been on my mind for a while now, but In the desi culture, men (uncles) often pat us girls on the head, some even go so far as to the touch our shoulders (repulsive) astaghfarAllah. I feel like this is similar to the handshake issue, except its in the desi culture, not the western culture (not sure if muslims from other cultures can relate). the fact that our parents readily accept this makes it something difficult to prohibit. i was wondering if any brothers or sisters could offer solutions to this problem.

    Jazakallah Khair

  65. I'm a Muslim August 26, 2011 at 12:44 am #


    Frankly, its not easy to avoid it but we as a muslim, we must to. Usually, I just smile, and say 'I'm Sorry, I can't, I don't shake hands with opposite gender'. yeah, not all, but some of them can accept and understand that.

    or u can try this idea, someone told me to do this. if u have a choc, its a best way to avoid it. it safe u actualy. If they extends their hand, just give them a small bar of dark chocolate or any choc u have and smile. cool right? so, lets bring choc all the time =)

  66. UFL September 10, 2011 at 10:57 am #

    Stop thinking what people might say. Think of what Allah say and be prepared to be hated.If you think your hands are yours, you are dreaming. They will be returned to the Owner, the One who created it and how you gona return them when they are defected with what you caused them? The only way for us to return what we owe is by taking care of it. These hands need to be taken care of,protected from using it the way the Owner prohibit you from doing.

    Glad tidings to strangers! Strangers are special aren't they?

  67. AbuAhmad January 9, 2012 at 1:27 pm #

    " I do not shake hands with women." What is the word use in the hadith Laa? lan?or Lam?

    If the word used in the said hadith is Laa it means there is exception to this action. Example Laa Ilaha illallah (There's no God but Allah). An laa ta'hbubudow illallah that you don't worship except Allah. Laa tudhrikuhul absaar No vision reaches him. But in jannah the vision of Prophets and Believers will reach/comprehend him. It means the Prophet most of the times does not touch women.Are not his wives women and did he not touch them?It is narrated on the authority of Ibn Hibban, Al-Bazzar, Al-Tabari, and Ibn Mardawih that Umm `Atiyyah said in respect of the story of taking the oath of allegiance of women, “The Messenger of Allāh (Sallallāhu 'alaihi wa sallam) held out his hand from outside the house and we (the immigrating women) held our hands from within the house, then he said, ‘O Allāh, bear witness.’” In another narration reported by Al-Bukhari, Umm `Atiyyah said, “… thereupon a lady withdrew her hand (refrained from taking the oath of allegiance)…” This narration indicates that they (the immigrating women) took their oath of allegiance by shaking hands. Al-Hafiz said: we reply to the first saying that holding out hands from behind a veil is an indication of the acceptance of the allegiance even if there was no shaking of hand.

    If the word used in the said hadith is "lam"(never) like: I never shake hands with women. Like in " Lam yalid Wa lam yuwlad" He never begets and he never is/was/will be begotten. Then, you can say it was absolutely forbidden for him to touch women. `A’ishah said, “By Allāh, the Messenger of Allāh (Sallallāhu 'alaihi wa sallam) only took the oath of allegiance from the women in the manner prescribed by Allāh, and the hand of the Messenger of Allāh (Sallallāhu 'alaihi wa sallam) never touched the hand of any woman. When he had taken their oath of allegiance he would say, ‘I have accepted your oath of allegiance verbally.’” [Reported by Al-Bukhari]

    Here," the hand of the Messenger of Allāh (Sallallāhu 'alaihi wa sallam) never touched the hand of any woman."It was said by our beloved Ummol Muhmineen(R.A.) not by the Prophet(S.A.W.)

    But we knew from history that not All the time Aisha(R.A.) was always accompanying our beloved prophet Muhammad (S.A.W.) so that's why she did not witness this incident in the said hadith: Umm `Atiyyah. It is narrated on the authority of Ibn Hibban, Al-Bazzar, Al-Tabari, and Ibn Mardawih that Umm `Atiyyah said in respect of the story of taking the oath of allegiance of women, “The Messenger of Allāh (Sallallāhu 'alaihi wa sallam) held out his hand from outside the house and we (the immigrating women) held our hands from within the house, then he said, ‘O Allāh, bear witness.’” In another narration reported by Al-Bukhari, Umm `Atiyyah said, “… thereupon a lady withdrew her hand (refrained from taking the oath of allegiance)…”

  68. Nikki January 21, 2012 at 2:40 pm #

    I respect everyone's right to a religion and am a practising strict Christian myself.

    In my opinion here the issue is cultural as well as religious. Not shaking hands with a woman has been part of middle-eastern/Islamic and Jewish culture AND religion for several centuries.

    If one refuses to shake hands in an Islamic country it is not perceived as bad manners, it is normal and no one will think twice about it. It is entrenched in the culture and it has no negative connotations. So even though it is based on religious beliefs the cultural systems around those beliefs have developed other ways of greeting which are socially acceptable and offend no one.

    However, in a Western context refusing to shake hands with someone has a completely different connotation. It is a symbol of peace and good manners showing that you have no bad intentions towards the person you are meeting. It could originate from times when people carried weapons and shaking someone's hand showed that your hands were empty – you harboured no ill will towards the person. That is why historically in the past only traitors shook your hand with their left hand – they had a knife concealed in their right – that is why we consider it bad manners to shake with the left hand. From the western cultural perspective refusing to shake hands is a symbol of hostility – we refuse to shake hands with enemies, people we dislike or even hate. In earlier times during racial segregation people would refuse to shake hands with people they had prejudices against, whom they considered to be lower than themselves or as a direct sign of disrespect. This is coded deeply into people's brains and into what I call historical or cultural memory. When someone therefore refuses to shake hands with a woman people's immediate connotation is one of disrespect, hatred or prejudice. You might as well spit in someone's face – it is a sign of contempt and that is the first thing that will come into someone's mind.

    This has nothing to do with whether it is right to shake a woman's hand or not. Muslims have a right to practice their religion in peace but must also be aware of how their behaviour may be interpreted by others.

    As I tolerant and open minded woman, I would never force anyone to shake my hand or put pressure on them to betray their religious views. But if I did reach out and someone refused I probably couldn't help feeling offended or hurt that this person had rejected my symbol of peace and friendship. I would not naturally reach out to shake hands with people I feared or didn't respect so if this wasn't returned I would find it hard to accept that this person respected me.

    A lot depends on how it's done and if someone explains kindly or warns you beforehand then it would probably soften the blow – but not all Muslim men are able to do this with grace and because they may find the situation difficult or stressful, that stress sometimes comes across as arrogance or harshness. It would be a good idea if the offer of a handshake were refused with some substitute symbol of reciprocated respect – perhaps a bow of the head and a smile, instead of the usual "I don't shake hands with women!". It would be good if Muslims adopted some other form of greeting which would be acceptable to Western women, without compromising their own religious views.

    I would also like to comment on what one of the writer on this forum wrote about one reason for not shaking hands being that 'One thing could lead to another'. I can understand this from a religious point of view because Christianity also teaches that uncontrolled thoughts and actions can lead to immorality. However, as an adult woman I would find such an explanation extremely offensive and would probably be very angry if a man gave it as a reason for not shaking my hand. In effect he would be saying that if I shook his hand I would want to sleep with him or would be 'available'. To insinuate this to someone you have just met is very disrespectful. I can assure you that I do not find every man I shake hands with attractive and would not want to sleep with them – to even suggest this would just make the whole experience worse for a woman. First someone shows you hostility and next they're calling you a potential slut. It's a double blow and insult.

    I would therefore suggest that Muslim men warn people in advance when attending meetings. If no advance warning can be given, and an awkward situation occurs where a woman has offered to shake your hand then perhaps you can smile, bow your head or nod as a sign of greeting/reciprocated respect and with a smile just say something like "I'm not being disrespectful – according to my religion and culture it is inappropriate to shake hands with a member of the opposite gender." If you say that it sounds ok and people will probably not feel hurt. It sounds a lot better than saying "I don't shake hands with women!"

    If asked why then it is sufficient to say – "In my religion/culture touching a woman who is not your mother or wife is considered disrespectful. We therefore show respect to women by avoiding any physical contact with them, unless they are related to us."

    This sounds respectful and would be understood in the western context, as hundreds of years ago men did not touch women in Europe either -for exactly the same reasons. It offends no one and does not imply anything about your relationship with the person to whom you are talking. Saying something along the lines of "I'm not shaking your hand in case you seduce me or we end up having sex." is just plain rude, offensive, disrespectful and horrible – however nicely you put it. It is difficult to explain religious doctrine in such situations and it just comes out sounding wrong.

    If respect is show and it is done in a way that show respect to the woman then there will be no problems. However, many Muslim men do it without grace and basically end up communicating "I'm not going to shake your hand because I don't think women are equally worthy of respect to the male colleagues present in this room. Furthermore I'm afraid to shake your hand in case you jump my bones, you western whore!"

    That's how it comes across too often!

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