Can one make someone his sister?
Mu' meneen Brothers and Sisters,
As Salaam Aleikum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh. (May Allah's Peace, Mercy and Blessings be upon all of you)
One of our brothers/sisters has asked this question:
As Salaam Alaikum. I have a question which has been bothering me for a long time now. Recently I met a girl who is a Hindu and this girl doesn`t have any brothers and she treats me like one. So my question is : "Is it forbidden to accept her as my sister because many people said it is not allowed in Islam". I don`t know what justification they have for this but what I think is Islam cannot be narrowed down on petty things like this. I totally believe in Islam and I always try to be a better Muslim. So guide me in this matter if I am wrong and if it is not allowed to have a brother-sister relationship with people not from your own family then please give me a justification for this. I would really appreciate it. Thank you. Jazakh Allah Khair.
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Can one make someone his sister?
In the name of Allah, We praise Him, seek His help and ask for His forgiveness. Whoever Allah guides none can misguide, and whoever He allows to fall astray, none can guide them aright. We bear witness that there is no one (no idol, no person, no grave, no prophet, no imam, no dai, nobody!) worthy of worship but Allah Alone, and we bear witness that Muhammad(saws) is His slave-servant and the seal of His Messengers.
Allah says in the Holy Quran Chapter 60 Surah Mumtahina verse 8:Allah forbids you not with regard to those who fight you not for (your) Faith, nor drive you out of your homes, from dealing kindly and justly with them: for Allah loveth those who are just.
Islam encourages the believers to be good, kind, helpful, just, and righteous to people of other faiths; for they are indeed your brothers and sisters in humanity. But to actually choose one at will who is not a blood relative and give him/her all the rights that are due to a relative, would not be consistent with the nature of humanity. Allah has created relations by blood and by marriage, and have assigned each of these relatives due rights. If one just starts choosing his relatives at will, many legal things like inheritance, segregation of sexes, mehram / non-mehram issues, permissibility of marriages, etc. will be compromised. Therefore, to protect the interests of humanity, harmony of society, rights of the relatives, etc., Islam has commanded that only those who are related by blood and marriage will be legal relatives.
Just by calling someone a sister, or a brother, or a father, or a mother, etc. does not make them one’s legal relatives in the sight of Allah Subhanah.
Allah says in the Holy Quran Chapter 33 Surah Ahzaab verses 4-6:
4 Allah has not made for any man two hearts in his (one) body: nor has He made your wives whom ye divorce by Zihar your mothers: nor has He made your adopted sons your (real) sons. Such is (only) your (manner of) speech by your mouths. But Allah tells (you) the Truth and He shows the (right) Way.
5 Call them by (the names) of their fathers: that is juster in the sight of Allah, but if ye know not their father's (names call them) your Brothers in faith or your friends. But there is no blame on you if ye make a mistake therein: (what counts is) the intention of your hearts: and Allah is Oft-Returning Most Merciful.
The Prophet is closer to the Believers than their own selves and his wives are their mothers. Blood-relations among each other have closer personal ties in the Decree of Allah than (the Brotherhood of) Believers and Muhajirs: nevertheless do ye what is just to your closest friends: such is the writing in the Decree (of Allah).
Allah says in the Holy Quran Chapter 58 Surah Mujadila verse 2: If any men among you divorce their wives by Zihar (calling them mothers) they cannot be their mothers: none can be their (real) mothers except those who gave them birth. And in fact they use words (both) iniquitous and false: but truly Allah is one that blots out (sins) and forgives (again and again).
Besides, brother, when one grows up in the same household with his brothers and sisters, it is extremely clear to society that they are a family. But if one chooses any woman and makes her his sister, this would naturally instigate the onlookers to point a finger at the morality, chastity, and righteousness of the people involved. Just imagine the chaos this would create in society and the family, if a married man secretly and openly goes out with his so-called ‘sister’! To how many people will they be able to justify and convince that this un-related man and woman are not having an illicit secret relationship, but have accepted each other as brother and sister? If such a system of creating one’s relatives at will was allowed, just imagine the chaos that could be created by the unscrupulous and immoral people in society!
Whatever written of Truth and benefit is only due to Allah’s Assistance and Guidance, and whatever of error is of me. Allah Alone Knows Best and He is the Only Source of Strength.
Your Brother in Islam,