Quran doesn’t mention a specific word for “Bestiality”. It doesn’t mean it is allowed or it is not a sin. There are many things which Quran didn’t mention directly but yet rules of Quran apply on them. Bible doesn’t mention anything about Lesbianism, Necrophilia, Oral intercourse or anal intercourse with wife, Public intercourse, group intercourse, masturbation, Sex with machine, vibrator and one can argue about pederasty and pedophilia (As Talmud scholars did). Does it mean Bible allow these things?
Quran restricts the mating between man and woman
Per Fuqaha’(Scholars like Imam Nawawi) of Islam, Homosexuality, Bestiality and Masturbation are forbidden according to following verses of Quran:
Reference: Chapter 23: AL-MU’MINUN (THE BELIEVERS)>> Verse 5-7
Online Source: https://quran.com/23/5-7
5. And they who guard their private parts
6. Except from their wives or those their right hands possess, for indeed, they will not be blamed
7. But whoever seeks beyond that, then those are the transgressors
Repeated again in 70:29-31
- The Phrase “guard private parts” means abstain from unlawful sexual intercourse wherever this phrase is mentioned in Quran.
- The Phrase “right hand possesses” is used for “Slaves” in general (Read Quran: 30:28 4:36 4:3 24:58 24:33 and specifically used for “female slaves”( Read Quran: 16:71 33:55 33:50 4:3 4:24 4:25 24:31 33:52) when talking about carnal relations in Quran. Many translators have directly translated “right hand possesses” as “female slaves”. See http://www.islamawakened.com/quran/23/6/default.htm
- These verses are saying that only lawful intercourse for man is with his wives or concubines and other kinds of intercourses are unlawful.Hence there is direct Prohibition against any carnal relation that is not between a man and a woman e.g homosexuality, Bestiality, Masturbation,sex with toys, robots etc.
Another verse that say mating is only between man and women.
Reference: Chapter 30:AR-RUM (THE ROMANS)>> Verse 21
Online Source: https://quran.com/30/21
And of His signs is that He created for you from yourselves mates that you may find tranquility in them; and He placed between you affection and mercy. Indeed, in that are signs for a people who give thought.
Here “he created for you from yourselves” means “creation that are of same nature of men_ I.e. women”
Bestiality and Sodomy are immoral, indecent deeds and things against nature and Quran has strictly forbidden immorality and things against nature
Reference: Chapter 7: AL-A’RAF (THE HEIGHTS)>> Verse 33
Online Source: https://quran.com/7/33
Say, “My Lord has only forbidden immoralities – what is apparent of them and what is concealed”
Scholars have considered unnatural intercourse as immorality and bestiality and homosexuality are included in it.
Reference: Chapter 16: AN-NAHL (THE BEE)>> Verse 90
Online Source: https://quran.com/16/90
إِنَّ اللَّهَ يَأْمُرُ بِالْعَدْلِ وَالْإِحْسَانِ وَإِيتَاءِ ذِي الْقُرْبَىٰ وَيَنْهَىٰ عَنِ الْفَحْشَاءِ وَالْمُنكَرِ وَالْبَغْيِ ۚ يَعِظُكُمْ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَذَكَّرُونَ
Inna Allaha ya/muru bilAAadliwal-ihsani wa-eeta-i theealqurba wayanha AAani alfahsha-i walmunkariwalbaghyi yaAAithukum laAAallakum tathakkaroon
Indeed, Allah orders justice and good conduct and giving to relatives and forbids immorality and bad conduct and oppression. He admonishes you that perhaps you will be reminded.
This is one of the most celebrated verse of the Quran. In every Friday Sermon, Imam recites it. According to Famous Mufasir of Quran Obaid Ullah Sindhi, this verse is the concise definition and Summary of Islam.In this verse 3 things are ordered to do and 3 are forbidden to do. All of them have brought concept in it and consist of whole teachings of Islam.
Two highlighted words are those with whom this topic is related.
According to Scholars
Fahsha means any indecent thing which brings shame.
Munkar means anything that is against morality of nature of men.
Of course both of these words have broad meaning in fact they are broad topics but for our topic concern, these words do include unnatural and immoral sexuality and Indeed sodomy, bestiality, necrophilia etc are immoral and unnatural.
Here is Muhsin Khan Translation with commentary which will vanish any doubt
Verily, Allah enjoins Al-Adl (i.e. justice and worshipping none but Allah Alone – Islamic Monotheism) and Al-Ihsan [i.e. to be patient in performing your duties to Allah, totally for Allah’s sake and in accordance with the Sunnah (legal ways) of the Prophet SAW in a perfect manner], and giving (help) to kith and kin (i.e. all that Allah has ordered you to give them e.g., wealth, visiting, looking after them, or any other kind of help, etc.): and forbids Al-Fahsha’ (i.e all evil deeds, e.g. illegal sexual acts, disobedience of parents, polytheism, to tell lies, to give false witness, to kill a life without right, etc.), and Al-Munkar (i.e all that is prohibited by Islamic law: polytheism of every kind, disbelief and every kind of evil deeds, etc.), and Al-Baghy (i.e. all kinds of oppression), He admonishes you, that you may take heed
Logic against Homosexuality:
Logic used by Quran against sodomy/homosexuality of People of Lot(Sodom and Gomorrah) also apply on Bestiality. Quran condemns homosexuality because it is immoral and unnatural. Both of these qualities are in bestiality. Hence Quran condemns bestiality.
Online Source: https://quran.com/27/54-55
Reference: Chapter 27: AN-NAML (THE ANT)>> Verse 54-55
And [mention] Lot, when he said to his people, “Do you commit immorality while you are seeing?Do you indeed approach men with desire instead of women? Rather, you are a people behaving ignorantly.”
Here for bestiality the logic will be ”do you indeed approach animal with desire instead of women?”
Reference: Chapter 7:AL-A’RAF (THE HEIGHTS)>> Verse 80-81
Online Source: https://quran.com/7/80-81
And [We had sent] Lot when he said to his people, “Do you commit such immorality as no one has preceded you with from among the worlds?Indeed, you approach men with desire, instead of women. Rather, you are a transgressing people.”
Again, same logic can be used against bestiality.
The following one is concise of all previous verses mentioned in this article.
Reference: Chapter 26: ASH-SHU’ARA (THE POETS)>> Verse 165-166
Online Source: https://quran.com/26/165-166
Do you approach males among the worlds
And leave what your Lord has created for you as mates? But you are a people transgressing.”
Lord (Allah) created women for mating with men not men or beast and mating of a man with man or a beast is transgression.
There are few traditions which are reported from the Prophet SAWW about “Bestiality”. I will discuss them one by one on the basis of the topic.
Cursed on those who commits bestiality:
In these traditions the Prophet(SAWW) cursed those who commits bestiality. There are two Companions from which Such hadiths are reported. They are Ibn E Abbas and Abu Huraira(RA) making these traditions trustworthy. Also they are Sahih (sound) in Isnad(Narration).
Traditions about other topics are only reported from Ibn E Abbas(RA) which will be discussed later.
The tradition below is narrated from Ibn E Abbas and declared Sahih(Authentic) by Albani and Ahmed Muhammed Shakir while Darussalam and Shoaib Arna’oot declared it Hasan(good).
- Reference: Musnad Imam Ahmed Bin Hanbal >> volume 2>> Musnad of ‘Abdullah bin al-‘Abbas>> Hadith:1875
It was narrated that Ibn ‘Abbas said: The Prophet (SAWW) said:”Cursed be the one who reviles his father, cursed be the one who reviles his mother, cursed be the one who offers a sacrifice to anyone but Allah, cursed be the one who changes boundary markers, cursed be the one whomisleads a blind man from the road, cursed be the one who commits bestiality, cursed be the one who does the deed of the people of Loot”
[Its isnad is hasan] (DARUSSALAM)
Albani: Sahih (Source: http://shamela.ws/browse.php/book-10757/page-959 )(5891)
Ahmed Shakir: Its Isnad is Sahih (Source: https://ia601008.us.archive.org/27/items/WAQmusndaWAQ/musnda02.pdf)
Shu’ayb Arna’oot: Hasan (Source: http://islamport.com/d/1/mtn/1/89/3414.html)
This tradition is repeated again and again by Imam Ahmed bin Hanbal with different chain of narrators.
- Reference: Musnad Imam Ahmed Bin Hanbal >> volume 3>> Musnad of ‘Abdullah bin al-‘Abbas>> Hadith:2913
- Reference: Musnad Imam Ahmed Bin Hanbal >> volume 3>> Musnad of ‘Abdullah bin al-‘Abbas>> 2914
- Reference: Musnad Imam Ahmed Bin Hanbal >> volume 3>> Musnad of ‘Abdullah bin al-‘Abbas>> 2915
In English translation of following tradition in Tirmidhi, the whole tradition was not translated. That’s why the part which is related with “Bestiality” was Ignored but I wrote the complete translation here.
- Reference: Jami` at-Tirmidhi 1456
In-book reference: Book 17, Hadith 40
English translation: Vol. 3, Book 15, Hadith 1456
Online Source: https://sunnah.com/tirmidhi/17/40
Narrated Ibn ‘Abbas:
That the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said: “Whomever you find doing the actions of the people of Lut then kill the one doing it, and the one it is done to.”
(Missing Translation) Abu ‘Isa [al-Tirmidhi] said: It is through this line (wajh) that this hadith is known and Muhammad bin Ishaq reported this hadith from ‘Amr bin Abi ‘Amr, in which he said “he who does the act of the people of Lut is cursed” but did not mention killing and in that hadith it was also said that he who has sex with an animal is cursed. This hadith has also been reported from ‘Asim bin ‘Umar from Suhayl bin Abi Salih from his father from Abu Hurayrah from the Prophet who said, “Kill the one who performs the act and the one on whom it is performed”. Abu ‘Isa [al-Tirmidhi] said: the isnad of this hadith is a matter of contention; we do not know anyone who reported it from Suhayl bin Abi Salih except ‘Asim bin ‘Umar al-‘Umari and ‘Asim bin ‘Umar is considered weak in hadith before his hifz. And people of knowledge have differed regarding the penalty for one who does the homosexual act. Some of them said that he is to be stoned regardless of whether or not he is married. This is the view of Malik and Shafi‘i and Ahmad and Ishaq. And some people of knowledge among the fuqaha` of the Successors, including al-Hasan al-Basri and Ibrahim al-Nakh‘i and ‘Ata bin Abi Rabah said the hadd for a luti is hadd of zan and that is the view of Thawri and the scholars of Kufa.
The tradition is also reported from Abu Huraira in complimentary sources.
Reference: Majma Al-Zawa`id >>Reported by Ibn Hajar Al-Haithami on the authority of Abu Hurairah
Online Source: Mentioned by Imam Dhabi in his book “(70) Major sins” https://www.kalamullah.com/Books/major_sins.pdf
The Prophet (pbuh) said,
“Four people entail Allah’s wrath in night and day. ” It was asked, “Who are they, Messenger of Allah?”
He answered, “Effeminate men and masculine women, the adulterer of animals and sodomizers.”
I think these Traditions are sufficient to prove that Bestiality is not only Haram in Islam but a major sin . As for the Punishment is concern it is discussed below:
Traditons about Death Penalty for those who commits Bestiality:
English reference: Vol. 3, Book 20, Hadith 2564
Arabic reference: Book 20, Hadith 2661
Online Source: https://sunnah.com/urn/1268810
It was narrated from Ibn`Abbas that the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said:
“Whoever has intercourse with a Mahram relative, kill him; and whoever has intercourse with an animal, kill him, and kill the animal.”
Grade : Sahih (Darussalam)
Reference: Sunan Abi Dawud 4464
In-book reference: Book 40, Hadith 114
English translation: Book 39, Hadith 4449
Online Source: https://sunnah.com/abudawud/40/114
Narrated Abdullah ibn Abbas:
The Prophet (ﷺ) said: If anyone has sexual intercourse with an animal, kill him and kill it along with him. I (Ikrimah) said: I asked him (Ibn Abbas): What offence can be attributed to the animal/ He replied: I think he (the Prophet) disapproved of its flesh being eaten when such a thing had been done to it.
Abu Dawud said: This is not a strong tradition.
Grade : Hasan Sahih (Al-Albani)
Again repeated in the Trimidhi with same narrators.
Reference: Jami` at-Tirmidhi 1455
In-book reference: Book 17, Hadith 38
English translation: Vol. 3, Book 15, Hadith 1455
Online Source: https://sunnah.com/tirmidhi/17/38
Narrated Ibn ‘Abbas:
That the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said: “Whomever you see having relations with an animal then kill him and kill animal.” So it was said to Ibn ‘Abbas: “What is the case of the animal?” He said: “I did not hear anything from the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) about this, but I see that the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) disliked eating its meat or using it, due to the fact that such a (heinous) thing has been done with that animal.”
Tirmidhi said: “We do not find this hadith except from ‘Amr bin ‘Amr and he from ‘Ikrimah and he from Ibn ‘Abbas and he from the Prophet.”
Grade : Hasan (Darussalam)
Bulugh al-Maram » Hudud – كتاب الحدود
English reference: Book 10, Hadith 1255
Arabic reference: Book 10, Hadith 1216
Online Source: https://sunnah.com/urn/2015030
Ibn ‘Abbas (RAA) narrated that the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said:
“Whoever you find doing as the people of Lot did (i.e. homosexuality), kill the one who does it and the one to whom it is done, and if you find anyone having sexual intercourse with animal, kill him and kill the animal.” Related by Ahmad and the four Imams with a trustworthy chain of narrators.
Problems with the Traditions of Death penalty for Bestiality:
Commenty on Death penalty for bestiality is discussed here: http://www.islamicperspectives.com/Stoning5.htm
Traditions that there is no Hadd(prescribed Punishment) for Bestiality
There is one tradition which is considered more reliable by Muslim Scholars and on whom Majority of Muslim Scholars gave their verdict but there is one problem in this tradition. It is not sayings of The Prophet SAWW but it seems it is personal opinion of Ibn E Abbas RA.
Note that this tradition is only saying there is no hadd prescribed for bestiality. It doesn’t mean there is no sin in bestiality and also it doesn’t mean there is no punishment at all as scholars elobrated. Furthermore it is in common sense that Bestiality was considered a great sense that’s why it was questioned that what penalty is for such a crime
Reference: Sunan Abi Dawud 4465
In-book reference: Book 40, Hadith 115
English translation: Book 39, Hadith 4450
Online Source: https://sunnah.com/abudawud/40/115
‘Asim reported from Abu Razin on the authority of Ibn ‘Abbas saying:
There is no prescribed punishment for one who has sexual intercourse with an animal.
Abu Dawud said: ‘Ata is also so. Al Hakam said: I think he should be flogged, but the number should not reach the one of the prescribed punishment. Al-Hasan said: He is like a fornicator.
Abu Dawud said: THe tradition of ‘Asim proves the tradition of ‘Amr b. Abi ‘Amr as weak.
Grade : Hasan (Al-Albani) حسن (الألباني) حكم :
Abu Dawood considers this hadith more reliable but Albani graded as Hasan(may be sahih may be not). Muhadith Al Hakam says that this hadith might mean that Hadd of Zina which is prescribed Punishment wouldn’t be applied on such act but nevertheless Hadd of Tazir would be applied i.e Zoophile will be flogged but less than 100 stripes. This view is held by majority of Muslim Scholars all over the world in History. But famous scholar Hasan Al Basri say that Hadd of Zina would be applied I.e 100 stripes.
It is again repeated by Imam Tirmidhi with same narrators
Reference: Jami` at-Tirmidhi 1455
In-book reference: Book 17, Hadith 39
English translation: Vol. 3, Book 15, Hadith 1455
Online Source: https://sunnah.com/tirmidhi/17/39
Sufyan Ath-Thawri reported from ‘Asim, from Abu Razin, from Ibn ‘Abbas who said:
“Whoever has relations with beast, then there is no legal punishment for him.”
Trimidhi says this hadith is more reliable in the sight of people of Knowledge and such is the saying of Ishaq and Imam Ahmed.
Grade : Hasan (Darussalam)
Someone may object that Bestiality might not be allowed in Sunni Islam but It may be allowed in Shia Islam. Well I’m here producing verses from Al Kafi_ the most trustworthy book of hadiths for Shias.
Reference: Al kafi>> Volume:5>> Book: Marriage>> (Part 7)>> Chapter 179 – The Masturbation and copulating with the animals>> Hadith No 3
Book Reference: Al Kafi – V 5 – The Book of Marriage Ch 177 H 3
Online Source: https://www.hubeali.com/alkafivol5e/ (part 1)
Muhammad Bin Yahya, from Muhammad Bin Ahmad, from Ahmad Bin Al Hassan, from Amro Bin Saeed, from Musaddiq Bin Sadaqa, from Ammar Bin Musa,(It has been narrated) from Abu Abdullahasws regarding the man who copulates with an animal, or rubs (masturbates)’. So heasws said: ‘Everything what man causes his water to descend regarding this and what resembles it, so it is adultery’
Muhammad Baqir Mujallisi: Musooq(Trustworthy), And it is strong in Isnad and hence declared prohibition (of masturbation and bestiality)
Reference: Maratul Aqool>> Volume:20>> Book: Marriage>> Chapter>> Masturbation and Copulation with animals>> Hadith 3 http://books.rafed.net/view.php?type=c_fbook&b_id=1073&page=391
There is another hadith that is also mentioned in Sunni Sources
Reference: Al kafi>> Volume:5>> Book: Marriage>> (Part 7)>> Chapter 179 – The Masturbation and copulating with the animals>> Hadith No 5
Book Reference: Al Kafi – V 5 – The Book of Marriage Ch 177 H 4
Online Source: https://www.hubeali.com/alkafivol5e/ (part 7)
Ali Bin Muhammad Al Kulayni, from Salih Bin Abu Hammad, from Muhammad Bin Ibrahim Al Nowfaly, from Al Husayn Bin Al Mukhtar, from one of his companions,
(It has been narrated) from Abu Abdullah(ASWS) having said: ‘Rasool-Allah(ASWS) said:‘Accursed is the one who copulates with an animal’
Muhammad Baqir Mujallisi: Weak(but remember still trusthworthy because Shia Fiqh Manual Wasael E Sharia.
Reference: Maratul Aqool>> Volume:20>> Book: Marriage>> Chapter>> Masturbation and Copulation with animals>> Hadith 5 http://books.rafed.net/view.php?type=c_fbook&b_id=1073&page=391
Reference: Al Kafi >> Volume: 7 >> Book: Legal Penalties >>Chapter 25: The Penalty (Hadd) upon the one who goes to the animal (bestiality)>> Hadith 1
Online Source: https://www.hubeali.com/alkafivol7/
Muhammad Bin Yahya, from Ahmad Bin Muhammad Bin Isa, from Ibn Mahboub, from Is’haq Bin Jareer, from Sudeyr, (It has been narrated) from Abu Ja’farasws regarding the man who went to the animal. Heasws said: ‘He would be penalised less than the (complete) Penalty (Hadd), and would have to compensate the price of the animal to its owner, because he has spoilt it, and it would be slaughtered, and burnt, and buried, if it was from what its flesh is eaten; and if it was from what its back is ridden upon, he would have to compensate its price, and be whipped less than the (complete) Penalty (Hadd), and it would be thrown out from the city in which the act had been committed with it, to another city where no one recognises it. So it would be sold therein, lest it be scoffed at’.
Muhammad Baqir Mujallisi: Good and trustworthy (http://books.rafed.net/view.php?type=c_fbook&b_id=1076&page=318)
Reference: Al Kafi >> Volume: 7 >> Book: Legal Penalties >>Chapter 25: The Penalty (Hadd) upon the one who goes to the animal (bestiality)>> Hadith 2
Online Source: https://www.hubeali.com/alkafivol7/
Ali Bin Ibrahim, form Muhammad Bin Isa, form Yunus, from Sama’at who said, ‘I asked Abu Abdullahasws about the man who went to an animal, or a sheep, or a camel, or a cow. So heasws said: ‘Upon him is that he would be whipped a Penalty (Hadd) less that the (complete) Penalty (Hadd). Then he would be exiled from the city to another one’. And theyasws have mentioned that the flesh of that animal is Prohibited, along with its milk’
There is no direct mention of Bestiality in Quran. Furthermore, Bestiality and Homosexuality were not Practiced in Arabia at the time of the Prophet SAWW. But Quran without mentioning the name and Hadith traditions directly condemn bestiality and scholars unanimously agree that Bestiality is a big sin and not allowed in Islam. As for the punishment Scholars have dispute. Majority of Scholars order for Punishment of Tazeer i.e. lashes but less than 80 on sodomy and bestiality.
Here is part 2 about Scholars’ views and Penal laws of Muslim countries on Punishment for crime of Bestiality.