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What Is the Ruling on Shia Sunni Marriage?

Answered as per Hanafi Fiqh by DarulIftaBirmingham

Answered by: Maulana Burhaan Rahman


I want to know what is the ruling on Shia Sunni marriage, where the girl is Sunni and the guy is Shia. Is it forbidden or haram as it is for a Muslim girl to marry non-Muslims?

In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful


It is Haram for a Muslim to marry a non-Muslim. Allah mentions in the Qur’an:

وَلَا تَنْكِحُوا الْمُشْرِكَاتِ حَتَّىٰ يُؤْمِنَّ ۚ وَلَأَمَةٌ مُؤْمِنَةٌ خَيْرٌ مِنْ مُشْرِكَةٍ وَلَوْ أَعْجَبَتْكُمْ ۗ وَلَا تُنْكِحُوا الْمُشْرِكِينَ حَتَّىٰ يُؤْمِنُوا ۚ وَلَعَبْدٌ مُؤْمِنٌ خَيْرٌ مِنْ مُشْرِكٍ وَلَوْ أَعْجَبَكُمْ ۗ أُولَٰئِكَ يَدْعُونَ إِلَى النَّارِ ۖ وَاللَّهُ يَدْعُو إِلَى الْجَنَّةِ وَالْمَغْفِرَةِ بِإِذْنِهِ ۖ وَيُبَيِّنُ آيَاتِهِ لِلنَّاسِ لَعَلَّهُمْ يَتَذَكَّرُونَ

“And do not marry Mushrikaat (idolatresses) till they believe (worship Allaah Alone). And indeed a slave woman who believes is better than a (free) Mushrikah (idolatress), even though she pleases you. And don’t give (your daughters) in marriage to Mushrikoon till they believe (in Allaah Alone) and verily, a believing slave is better than a (free) Mushrik (idolater), even though he pleases you. Those (Al-Mushrikoon) invite you to the fire, but Allaah invites (you) to Paradise and forgiveness through his permission, and makes His signs (proofs, evidence, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.) clear to mankind that they may remember”. [Surah Baqarah verse 221]

So firstly, we have this verse above which clearly states those people who are mushrikeen i.e. worship someone/another being other than Allah.

And secondly, with regards to a Sunni Muslim marrying a Shi’a, we need to first understand that there are different types of Shias and it is difficult to branch all of them into one belief system.

As long as the Shi’a person doesn’t believe/practice anything that takes them out of the fold of Islam i.e. shirk, not believing in the final messenger, not believing in the Qur’an etc., you are allowed to marry them (although they might show superior love towards Ali [RA] and act upon other extreme matters)

But something that is worth mentioning is that marriage is a very important matter which holds onto a lifelong commitment. It is very naive to think that different beliefs will not become interference in one’s marriage. So looking for the right person who has/can have many doubts about them should be avoided.

A well-known hadeeth our beloved Prophet SAW had said:

دع ما يريبك إلى ما لا يريبك

“Leave that which doubts you for that which has no doubt to you”. [Tirmidhi hadeeth no: 2442]

Only Allah knows best.

Written by Maulana Burhaan Rahman

Checked and approved by Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah

Darul Ifta Birmingham

This answer was collected from DarulIftaBirmingham.co.uk, which is run under the supervision of Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah from the United Kingdom.

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