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Does Love Exist in Islam?

08 February, 2020
Q Salam! I want to ask if in Islam "love" exists, because many non-Muslims claim that love does not exist in Islam. They say that it promotes hatred between people and that Allah is not a loving God.


Short Answer: In Islam, one of God’s (Allah in Arabic) names or attributes is Al-Wadood, which means the “Most Loving”. It is derived from the root word “wadda”, literately meaning “loved”.


Asalamu Alaikum,

Thank you for contacting About Islam with your question.

In Islam, one of God’s (Allah in Arabic) names or attributes is Al-Wadood, which means the “Most Loving”. It is derived from the root word “wadda”, literately meaning “loved”.

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Allah mentions in the Quran:

{And He is Al-Ghafoor (Oft-Forgiving), Al-Wadood (the Most Loving; full of love)} (Al-Burooj 85:14)

Allah loves those who follow His religion, and He loves the believers in their different qualities as explained in His book:

{Say (O Muhammad to mankind): “If you (really) love Allah then follow me (i.e. accept Islam by following the Quran and the Prophetic tradition), Allah will love you and forgive you your sins. And Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.”} (Aal-e-Imran 3:31)

There are several verses pertaining to qualities that Allah loves in a believing person:

{[…] Allah loves Al-Muhsinun (the good-doers).} (Aal-e-Imran 3:134)

{[…] Allah loves As-Sabirun (the patient).} (Aal-e-Imran 3:146)

{[…] Allah loves those who put their trust (in Him).} (Aal-e-Imran 3:159)

{[…] Allah loves those who act justly.} (Al-Maeda 5:42)

We conclude from the verses above that Allah loves those who have the highest moral conduct.  Also, the Prophet (peace be upon him-PBUH) mentioned Allah’s love in the following hadith:

If Allah loves a person, He calls [angel] Gabriel saying: ‘Allah loves so and so; O Gabriel, love him.’ Gabriel would love him, and then Gabriel would make an announcement among the residents of the Heaven, ‘Allah loves so-and-so, therefore, you should love him also.’ So, all the residents of the Heavens would love him and then he is granted the pleasure of the people of the earth. (Bukhari)

There are many types of love in Islam.

Loving Allah and His Prophet Muhammad

Believers should love Allah, their Creator, more than anyone or anything. Allah should be loved the most since this will guarantee Allah’s love as mentioned above.  

The way we love Allah and His prophet (PBUH) is by obeying Allah’s commands the way shown to us by our prophet. The Prophet (PBUH) said:

Whoever possesses the following three qualities will have the sweetness (delight) of faith: 1. The one to whom Allah and His Apostle becomes dearer than anything else. 2. Who loves a person and he loves him only for Allah’s sake. 3. Who hates to revert to Atheism (disbelief) as he hates to be thrown into the fire. (Bukhari)

Loving the Prophet’s Companions and the Believers

We should have a special love for our Prophet’s companions and the believing people; a kind of love that is not based on any worldly benefit, loving just for the sake of Allah.

A man asked the Prophet about the Hour (i.e. Day of Judgment) saying, “When will the Hour be?” The Prophet said, “What have you prepared for it?” The man said, “Nothing, except that I love Allah and His Apostle.” The Prophet said, “You will be with those whom you love.” (Bukhari)

Anas then said: “We had never been as glad as we were on hearing that saying of the Prophet (i.e., “You will be with those whom you love.”) Therefore, I love the Prophet, Abu Bakr, and ‘Umar; and I hope that I will be with them because of my love for them though my deeds are not similar to theirs.”

Loving the believers will unite and strengthen the Muslim community; one easy way to increase this love is to give each other the greeting of Islam: “Peace be upon you”. Narrated Samurah ibn Jundub:

The Prophet (PBUH) commanded us to respond to the salutation of the imam, to love each other, and to salute each other. (Sunan Abudawood)

Loving Our Parents

Loving our parents and honoring them comes after worshipping Allah according to following verse:

{And your Lord has decreed that you worship none but Him. And that you be dutiful to your parents. If one of them or both of them attain old age in your life, say not to them a word of disrespect, nor shout at them but address them in terms of honor.} (Al-Isra 17:23)

Loving Our Spouses

Allah mentioned in His book that he puts love, affection, and mercy between husband and wife:

{And among His Signs is this, that He created for you mates from among yourselves, that you may find repose in them, and He has put between you love, affection, and mercy. Verily, in that are indeed signs for a people who reflect.} (Ar-Room 30:21)

“Mawadda” is the Arabic world used in this verse means cordiality, affection, and love which are all synonyms in the English language. So, love between husband and wife is very important in Islam.

Loving Everyone

In general, a Muslim should love all beings. Ali, the Prophet’s cousin (may Allah be pleased with him) said:

If people are not your brothers in faith then they are your brothers in humanity. 

Also, Allah mentions in the following verse:

{Lo! You are the ones who love them but they love you not, and you believe in all the Scriptures [i.e. you believe in the Torah and the Gospel, while they disbelieve in your Book, the Quran…} (Aal-e-Imran 3:119)

There is also emphasis in Islam to love little children and those who are less privileged such as orphans and the needy. There are also many narrations where the Prophet (PBUH) shows his love to animals and even plants.

In conclusion, Islam is the true religion of love and compassion.

I hope this helps answer your question.

Walaikum Asalam and please keep in touch.

(From Ask About Islam archives)

Please continue feeding your curiosity, and find more info in the following links:

Why Do I Love Allah?

Where’s the Love in the Quran?

Islam is Not Just Rituals: Love is at its Core

My Husband’s Character Made Me Love Islam

The Love I Found in Islam!

Love for Others what you Love for Yourself