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Over 130 Muslim Religious Leaders Release Statement Clarifying LGBTQ Position In Islam


LGBTQ statement

The Western Muslim community has spent over two decades post-9/11 attempting to secure ally ships that would protect itself from the onslaught of right-wing, neocon anti-Muslim bias. These concerns weren’t trivial and included racial profiling, surveillance and monitoring, informant programs, arbitrary detentions with no legal recourse, no-fly lists, and watchlists to name a few.

In navigating these concerns, the Muslim community allied itself with the political left as a form of self-preservation, specifically with the LGBTQ community. The working idea was that “securing their rights was securing our rights” according to Muslim political activists leading the charge in these discussions. Unfortunately, the demand of the LGBTQ community has expanded from a reciprocal recognition of rights to demanding a full-throated acceptance and of lifestyle and ideology.

Anything less than affirming belief in their ideas results in “cancellation”. Cancellation includes (and isn’t limited to) internet bullying, harassment, death threats to the person and their family, doxing, contacting employers, and even banning from countries. Disagreement of any sort is medicalized as trauma and the repeated refrain is that disagreement causes suicide.

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Unfortunately, our political activists and leaders haven’t provided sufficient direction in expressing the normative position of Islam regarding gender ideology and sexual ethics.  Rather than fighting for our right to live according to our position, our political activists have embraced the LGBTQ community, their talking points, and their agenda. Rather than representing Muslim interests to our political allies, they’ve become progressive left representatives pushing these ideas back into the Muslim community.

Coupled with the fear of reprisal for individuals speaking out, this has led to silence from most community leaders. Silence, however, is no longer an option given the threats not only to adults, but now to children as well.  Progressive left activists have infiltrated school boards, corporate boardrooms, and government institutions (both federal and local). We are now expected to believe that gender is a construct, that children can be told there are many genders, and that although they might not know what it is upfront, can figure it out and turn themselves into whatever they wish with puberty blockers, hormones, and mutilation.  All of us are now told not only is this allowable, but it can also happen without parental consent.

And it doesn’t stop there – school libraries have become repositories for pornographic gay books, public libraries have been the launching grounds for twerking drag queens to dress in nothing and shake their genitals at little kids, and progressive leftists are unabashedly defending this filth publicly on TV and other media platforms.

We are long past overdue for a statement from Muslim scholars, leaders, and thought leaders across the Sunni theological divide uniting and clarifying as one voice the normative Islamic position both generally as well as specifically in considering the new ideas that are mainstreaming in Western societies. This newly released statement – titled “Navigating Differences: Clarifying Sexual and Gender Ethics in Islam”– clarifies the following:

Moral Disagreement isn’t Intolerance

“We reject the notion that moral disagreement amounts to intolerance or incitement of violence.” Due to our faith, as the statement says, “…sexual relations are permitted within the bounds of marriage, and marriage can only occur between a man and a woman.” This also means we don’t consider premarital or extramarital sexual relationships as sanctioned by our faith. We don’t believe in viewing pornography, drinking alcohol, eating pork, and more fundamentally, worshiping other than Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) as moral behavior.

Does that mean that for every person’s lifestyle choices and ideas -that they have the legal right to make- we don’t affirm, we are intolerant? Of course not. And likewise, we don’t believe that other faith groups (or those with no faith) who disagree with our beliefs are intolerant of us either.

Islamic Marriage is the Only Way for Sexual Relationships

As mentioned earlier, the only type of sexual relationship recognized as morally sanctioned in our faith is between a man and a woman. This not only dis-includes homosexual relationships, but pre-marital and extra-marital heterosexual relationships. The statement also affirms the consensus position from Muslim scholars on homosexuality, that it is explicitly forbidden and considered an abomination as stated in the Quran.

Biological Sex, Gender Identity, and Gender-Affirming Care

“As such, as a general rule, Islam strictly prohibits medical procedures intended to change the sex of healthy individuals, regardless of whether such procedures are termed gender “affirming” or “confirming.””

The statement points out that Allah subḥānahu wa ta'āla (glorified and exalted be He) has created us as male and female, that we aren’t permitted to change our biology to match our internal state, and that men and women generally shouldn’t attempt to imitate the ways of the other.

Thoughts, Feelings, Desires, and Inclinations

“Islam distinguishes between feelings, actions, and identity. God holds individuals accountable for their words and actions, not for their involuntary thoughts and feelings.” For those experiencing feelings of same-sex attraction or gender confusion, they are not sinful for having such feelings or experiencing thoughts and inclinations – what’s important is whether they act on them and try to bring them to fruition.

For Muslim Political Figures

“We urge Muslim public figures to uphold the sanctity of our faith and refrain from making erroneous pronouncements on behalf of Islam. We reject any attempt to attribute positions to Islam concerning sexual and gender ethics that contravene well-established Islamic teachings.” This is for politicians and activists.  Many of them have gone well out of their lane in making pronouncements on behalf of the faith in terms of what we should support.

Final Thoughts

This statement marks a good start towards mainstreaming the normative Islamic position on LGBTQ issues proliferating throughout the West. For the purpose of sharing our positions with a non-Muslim audience, this document can be a good resource. Going forward we will need continual engagement from Muslim scholars in concert with subject matter experts on this while it remains a concern infiltrating all sectors of society, especially our children’s schools, the entertainment they consume, and the online spaces they follow.  This cannot and should not be a one-and-done effort. Likewise, our community has to be willing to stand behind our leaders when they take these stances at risk to themselves and their families. We have to be willing to risk ourselves and stand up for our principles and values and even bear the brunt of the consequences.

The full statement can be found here.

Here are what some of the signatories are saying about the statement:



The MM Recap: Islam And The LGBTQ+ Movement –

Fatwa Regarding Transgenderism –


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The Prophet (SAW) has taught us the best of deeds are those that done consistently, even if they are small. Click here to support MuslimMatters with a monthly donation of $2 per month. Set it and collect blessings from Allah (swt) for the khayr you're supporting without thinking about it.

Siraaj is the Executive Director of MuslimMatters. He's spent over two decades working in dawah organizations, starting with his university MSA and going on to lead efforts with AlMaghrib Institute, MuslimMatters, and AlJumuah magazine. He's very married with wonderful children



  1. Jamaal

    May 26, 2023 at 10:03 PM

    May Allah swt bless u brother Siraaj. InnShaa.Allah Allah will guide all of us and protect us from this horrible stuff ameen. To keep others safe it shows we love one another. To just say, “Do what makes you happy.” It shows one doesn’t care at all. Would someone allow their son to go on the train tracks because it makes them happy? No but we must talk to each other as you have done brother and protect each other from the horrible dangers lurking ahead. InnSha.Allah I will share this with family and friends because Allah loves us the most (even more than our mothers) and if we follow and encourage that which He loves, it means we love each other too. May Allah help us love one another with true love as taught by His beloved messenger (saw) ameen.

    Abdullah ibn Mas’ud reported: The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said, “O Allah, bring our hearts together, reconcile between us, guide us to ways of peace, and deliver us from darkness into light. Keep us away from immorality, outwardly and inwardly, and bless us in our hearing, our seeing, our hearts, our spouses, and our children. Accept our repentance, for You alone are the Relenting, the Merciful. Make us grateful for Your blessings, praising and accepting them, and give them to us in full.”

    Source: Sunan Abī Dāwūd 968

  2. UmmTalha

    May 26, 2023 at 10:39 PM

    It’s sad that a statement needs to be issued on such obviously deviant ways of lifestyle, but it’s the reality of the world we live in today.
    May Allah swt protect us and our kids from all the fitnah around.

  3. John Wick

    May 27, 2023 at 11:08 AM

    The reason for so many genders is to make people with mental illnesses, personality disorders, or who are mediocre feel better about themselves and feel special, without having to actually do anything to merit such.

    There is a good reason that selfish, delusional and narcissistic behaviour and having a gender identity go hand in hand. Look up cluster B personality disorders.

    Gender as it is used today just means imaginations and feelings. People who have nothing of any merit can use this as a way to stand out and demand preferential treatment. It is nonsense. It is like the fat is beautiful movement – it is apologism for negative personality traits or illnesses, a way of pretending that these bad things are good. Very often these are people with no life, no jobs, no prospects, no relationships. They are utterly toxic and delusional. Every deviation and perversion is justified and applauded.

    All of this is nothing more than a society spiritually bankrupt and morally hollow. People worship themselves, their desires and feelings are their God. And that is what these people are doing. They are worshipping their mediocrity and worse, expecting others to do the same

  4. Truth

    May 27, 2023 at 11:13 AM

    This article was long overdue. Please pin this and let it stay on the main page. MM authors should write frequently against the LGBTQIA+ movement.

  5. Yusuf Ravat

    June 3, 2023 at 10:00 PM

    Truth is the secular experiment is over/ending the the data and results are in… did not fair well. LGBTQ is not on the rise, toleration is going down. Most non-muslims, the silent majority, do not like or desire this for their children or fellow human beings. The tide is turning slow as it maybe. People are slowly turning back to religion for the laws and structure, leading yourself is not working. And Allah knows best.

    The social test of acceptance can be a great influence on our morals which we are willing to concede on. Worshipping the opinion of others. LGBTQ is not the issue desiring acceptance(at any cost) / sucking up is. The test is Status.

  6. FR

    June 6, 2023 at 10:21 AM

    Cannot believe MM has actually allowed this long needed article

    I still need to read the opinions of the western scholars cited, who unfortunately frequently engage in activities and opinions far from Deen

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