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Are illegitimate children devoid of goodness?


Question and Answer:
Q. The issue of illegitimate children, which born out of wedlock. Our imams in Russia often say in sermons that there is no grace (barakah) in people who born outside of marriage, from them cannot get good people. Is it true? I was born without Nikah, without marriage. How to be in such situation?

(Question published as received)

A. You should know that Islam is a just and fair religion and there is no discrimination against a person because of his/her social status. A person who was born out of wedlock can become the best of people due to his/her good conduct and piety and there are many shining examples of such people in Islam. In essence, it is based on the person’s own character and morals that determines him/her to be a good or bad person. This is why, the Prophet of Allah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said:

“The illegitimate child is not blameworthy at all for the sin of his parent. Allah says: No one shall bear the sin of another” (Mustadrak Hakim, Confirmed as authentic by Dhahabi, Hadith #: 7053)

In addition to this, it is stated in the Fatawa (legal verdicts) of the classical scholars:

“An illegitimate child who believes in Allah and does good actions will enter Jannah. If not, then he will be treated like others (he will be accountable for his evil actions just like others). Compensation is based on a person’s actions, not on his lineage. The only reason why an illegitimate child is looked down upon is because bad character is expected of him as it usually happens in such cases just as how those who come from noble lineage are expected to have good conduct. Most importantly, a person will be judged by his actions. And the most honourable people in the eyes of Allah are those who are most pious”

From the above quoted texts it is clear that there is no discrimination against you in Islam merely due to you being born out of wedlock. Allah honours a person according to their good character and piety and there is no difference between you and any other Muslim except in the aspect of piety and goodness.

Mufti Suhail Tarmahomed

Fatwa Department
Jamiatul Ulama (KZN)
Council of Muslim Theologians
223 Alpine Road, Overport, Durban

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