The social manner in which others interact is a sign of their faith in Allah. Muslims follow the Quran and Sunnah guidelines about social interaction in Islam. The Quran outlines essential components of all relationships between people. These include respect, kindness, honesty, tolerance, self-respect, patience, and forgiveness. Such qualities apply to social interaction with people.
وَٱلْمُؤْمِنُونَ وَٱلْمُؤْمِنَٰتُ بَعْضُهُمْ أَوْلِيَآءُ بَعْضٍ ۚ يَأْمُرُونَ بِٱلْمَعْرُوفِ وَيَنْهَوْنَ عَنِ ٱلْمُنكَرِ وَيُقِيمُونَ ٱلصَّلَوٰةَ وَيُؤْتُونَ ٱلزَّكَوٰةَ وَيُطِيعُونَ ٱللَّهَ وَرَسُولَهُۥٓ ۚ أُو۟لَٰٓئِكَ سَيَرْحَمُهُمُ ٱللَّهُ ۗ إِنَّ ٱللَّهَ عَزِيزٌ حَكِيمٌ
The believing men and believing women are allies of one another. They enjoin what is right, forbid what is wrong, establish prayer, give zakāh and obey Allāh and His Messenger. Those – Allāh will have mercy upon them. Indeed, Allāh is Exalted in Might and Wise.
Which Social Interaction Is Prohibited in Islam?
There is a specific code of social interaction between men and women. According to the Islamic point of view, which applies regardless of one’s religion, and whether it is initiated from the male or the female side. There is no prohibition of social interaction between men and women itself. What is prohibited in Islam is a social interaction that has any “physical” dimension. Touching, talking, or even staring is unacceptable in the Islamic code of morals.
The Quran States About Social Interaction:
قُل لِّلْمُؤْمِنِينَ يَغُضُّوا۟ مِنْ أَبْصَٰرِهِمْ وَيَحْفَظُوا۟ فُرُوجَهُمْ ۚ ذَٰلِكَ أَزْكَىٰ لَهُمْ ۗ إِنَّ ٱللَّهَ خَبِيرٌۢ بِمَا يَصْنَعُونَ
Tell the believing men to lower their glances and guard their private parts. That is purer for them. Indeed, Allah is Acquainted with what they do.
وَقُل لِّلْمُؤْمِنَٰتِ يَغْضُضْنَ مِنْ أَبْصَٰرِهِنَّ وَيَحْفَظْنَ فُرُوجَهُنَّ وَلَا يُبْدِينَ زِينَتَهُنَّ إِلَّا مَا ظَهَرَ مِنْهَا ۖ وَلْيَضْرِبْنَ بِخُمُرِهِنَّ عَلَىٰ جُيُوبِهِنَّ ۖ وَلَا يُبْدِينَ زِينَتَهُنَّ إِلَّا لِبُعُولَتِهِنَّ أَوْ ءَابَآئِهِنَّ أَوْ ءَابَآءِ بُعُولَتِهِنَّ أَوْ أَبْنَآئِهِنَّ أَوْ أَبْنَآءِ بُعُولَتِهِنَّ أَوْ إِخْوَٰنِهِنَّ أَوْ بَنِىٓ إِخْوَٰنِهِنَّ أَوْ بَنِىٓ أَخَوَٰتِهِنَّ أَوْ نِسَآئِهِنَّ أَوْ مَا مَلَكَتْ أَيْمَٰنُهُنَّ أَوِ ٱلتَّٰبِعِينَ غَيْرِ أُو۟لِى ٱلْإِرْبَةِ مِنَ ٱلرِّجَالِ أَوِ ٱلطِّفْلِ ٱلَّذِينَ لَمْ يَظْهَرُوا۟ عَلَىٰ عَوْرَٰتِ ٱلنِّسَآءِ ۖ وَلَا يَضْرِبْنَ بِأَرْجُلِهِنَّ لِيُعْلَمَ مَا يُخْفِينَ مِن زِينَتِهِنَّ ۚ وَتُوبُوٓا۟ إِلَى ٱللَّهِ جَمِيعًا أَيُّهَ ٱلْمُؤْمِنُونَ لَعَلَّكُمْ تُفْلِحُونَ
And tell the believing women to lower their glances and guard their private parts and not expose their adornment except that which [necessarily] appears thereof and to wrap [a portion of] their headcovers over their chests and not expose their adornment [i.e., beauty] except to their husbands, their fathers, their husbands’ fathers, their sons, their husbands’ sons, their brothers, their brothers’ sons, their sisters’ sons, their women, that which their right hands possess [i.e., slaves], or those male attendants having no physical desire or children who are not yet aware of the private aspects of women. And let them not stamp their feet to make known what they conceal of their adornment. And turn to Allāh in repentance, all of you, O Believers, that you might succeed.
However, regular social interaction with a pure and decent atmosphere of politeness is lovely. So, The Quran itself is full of incidences where men and women interact within these boundaries.
“Now when he [Moses] arrived at the wells of Madyan, he found there a large group of men who were watering [their herds and flocks]; and at some distance from them, he came upon two women who were keeping back their flock. He asked [them]: “What is the matter with you?”
“We cannot water [our animals] until the herdsmen drive [theirs] home. For [we are weak, and] our father is a very old man.”
So he watered [their flock] for them. And when he withdrew into the shade and prayed:
فَسَقَىٰ لَهُمَا ثُمَّ تَوَلَّىٰٓ إِلَى ٱلظِّلِّ فَقَالَ رَبِّ إِنِّى لِمَآ أَنزَلْتَ إِلَىَّ مِنْ خَيْرٍ فَقِيرٌ
So he watered [their flocks] for them; then he went back to the shade and said, “My Lord, indeed I am, for whatever good You would send down to me, in need.”
So, decent social interaction happened everywhere during the time of the Prophet (PBUH), in the mosque, the street, and the market.
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