The Prohibition of Suicide


The human soul is a divine blessing bestowed upon people, thus humans are not allowed to hurt nor kill themselves, for suicide is generally forbidden and severely punished in all religions; because it is a form of injustice practiced against oneself. Thus, none of the religious texts permitted suicide, no matter how painful the oppression some humans may be subjected to, as Allah said, “And do not kill yourselves, Indeed, Allah is ever Merciful to you.And whoever does that in aggression and injustice, we shall cast him into Fire, and that is ever easy for Allah “[an-Nisa: 29-30]

The great scholar Ibn Jarir, said about the interpretation of this verse, “Allah the almighty indicates that humans are not permitted to kill themselves nor kill one another, thus Allah the almighty equated the killing of other Muslims with the killing of oneself, since both are a violation of the sanctity of blood.” [Tabari 8/229]. Al-Bukhaari also narrated in his Saheeh that Jundub ibn Abdullah said, that the Messenger of Allah, peace be upon him, said, “There was amongst those before you a man who had a wound. He was in [such] anguish that he took a knife and made with it a cut in his hand, and the blood did not cease to flow till he died. Allah the Almighty said, “My servant has himself forestalled me; I have forbidden him Paradise.”

Furthermore, Hafiz Ibn Hajar said about the reasons why that man was forbidden of paradise, “It is because he permitted suicide and thus became a non-believer, or that he was actually a non-believer thus was punished for this sin, or he was perhaps forbidden of paradise for a certain period of time. Also, it could be that he was forbidden of paradise and not heaven, or that the people of the previous religions fell into disbelief once they have committed major sins.Also, the Hadith indicates the prohibition of killing oneself, or others, since both are a violation of the sanctity of blood.” [Fath Al-Bari by Ibn Hajar 6/500]

Al-Bukhaari also narrated in his Saheeh, form Abu Hurayrah, that the Prophet, peace be upon him, said, “Whoever purposely throws himself from a mountain and kills himself, will be in the Hell falling down into it and abiding therein perpetually forever; and whoever drinks poison and kills himself with it, he will be carrying his poison in his hand and drinking it in Hell wherein he will abide eternally forever; and whoever kills himself with an iron weapon, will be carrying that weapon in his hand and stabbing his `Abdomen with it in Hell wherein he will abide eternally forever.” And Muslim narrated in his Saheeh from Thabit ibn Dahhaak, that the Messenger of Allah, peace be upon him, said, “He who kills himself with something, will be tormented with it on the Day of Resurrection.” Thus, all of those religious texts emphasized the prohibition of killing oneself, and the painful punishment that will befall upon those who kill themselves.

Moreover, Dr. Hassan Ali El Shazly, said in his search published the Islamic Fiqh Journal, “Humans are not allowed to do whatever they want with their bodies, nor are allowed to subject themselves to torment or injustice, for they are supposed to protect the blessing of life which Allah has bestowed upon them within the limits prescribed and accepted by Allah, the owner of everything in the universe. Therefore, Allah threatened to severely punish whoever harms himself, as Allah the Almighty said, “And do not throw yourselves into destruction”, and said, “And Do not kill yourselves, Allah is indeed Most Merciful to you.”

Furthermore, Allah called humans to deal with the misfortunes of this world with patience, and not kill themselves as Allah said, “O you who have believed, persevere and endure and remain stationed and fear Allah that you may be successful.”[Al-Imran: 200], and said,”O you who have believed, seek help through patience and prayer. Indeed, Allah is with the patient.”[Baqarah: 153], “You will surely be tested in your possessions and in yourselves. And you will surely hear from those who were given the Scripture before you and from those who associate others with Allah much abuse. But if you are patient and fear Allah – indeed, that is of the matters [worthy] of determination.”[Al-Imran: 186], “Moses Said to his people, “Seek help through Allah and be patient. Indeed, the earth belongs to Allah. He causes to inherit it that He wills of His servants. And the [best] outcome is for the righteous.” [Al-Arraf: 128], “And we caused the people who had been oppressed to inherit the eastern regions of the land and the western ones, which we had blessed. And the good word of your Lord was fulfilled for the Children of Israel because of what they had patiently endured. And we destroyed [all] that Pharaoh and his people were producing and what they had been building.” [Al-Arraf: 137]

Also, Al-Bukhaari narrated in his Saheeh from Abu Sa’eed al-Khudri, may Allah be pleased with him, that the Prophet, peace be upon him, said, “Whoever remains patient, Allah will make him patient. Nobody can be given a blessing better and greater than patience.” And Muslim narrated in his Saheeh from Suhaib, may Allah be pleased with him, said, “Strange are the ways of a believer for there is good in every affair of his and this is not the case with anyone else except in the case of a believer for if he has an occasion to feel delight, he thanks (God), thus there is good for him in it, and if he gets into trouble and shows resignation (and endures it patiently), there is a good for him in it.”

Abdullah bin Masood, said, “The Messenger of Allah, peace be upon him, said, “ahead of you are days which will require endurance, in which showing endurance will be like grasping live coals. The one who acts rightly during that period will have the reward of fifty men who act as he does.” Ibn Taymiyah, said, “Patience is obligatory on Muslims. Thus, patience includes patience in calamities, and patience in refraining from sins, for Allah has mentioned patience in the Quran in more than ninety verses, as Allah said, ” And seek help through patience and prayer, and indeed, it is difficult except for the humbly submissive [to Allah]”[al-Baqara: 45], and said, ” And We made from among them leaders guiding by Our command when they were patient and [when] they were certain of Our signs.”[as-Sajda: 24]” [Total of fatwas: 10/39]

Hence, it is quite evident that killing oneself by any means, whether through burning, stabbing, or strangling oneself, because of the injustice one went through is a major sin.