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Privacy and Islam

O ye who believe! Enter not houses other than your own until you have asked leave and saluted the inmates thereof. That is better for you, that you may be heedful. And if you find no one therein, do not enter them until you are given permission. And if it be said to you, ‘Go back’ then go back; that is purer for you. And Allah knows well what you do-Surah Nur

‘Abdullah Bin Busar (R ) narrated that the Prophet (S ) said, “When a person  goes to visit someone, he should not  stand right in front of the door, but to the right or left of it.”-Abu Dawud

Prophet (S ) said, “One who peeked  inside the house before having granted the permission to come in, did not truly ask for permission.”  (Abu Dawud)

Abu Hurairah (R ) reported that the Prophet (S) said, “You would have no blame if somebody peeks inside your house without permission and you hit him with a stone and it damages his eye.”  (Bukhari, Muslim)

Sahal Bin Sa‘ad (R) narrated that once the Prophet (S) was in his house combing his hair when someone came and peeked through the hole in the door.  When the Prophet (S) opened the door and noticed him peeking, he told him, “If I had known before that you were peeking, I would have struck your eye with the spear.”  The requirement to ask forpermission before entering someone’s home is meant to prevent people from freely looking in.  (Bukhari, Muslim)

Once somebody asked the Prophet (S) “O Prophet of Allah! Do I need to take permission even from my mother before entering her house?”  He replied, “Yes.”  The man asked, “O Prophet of Allah! I live alone with her in the house.”  Even then he replied, “Ask for her permission.”  The man said, “But, I serve her.”  The Prophet (S) replied, “Ask yourmother for permission before entering the house.  Do you wish to see her in nude?”  The man replied, “No.”  He said, “Then ask for her permission.” -(Mu’atta Imam Malik, p. 726)

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