Is Circumcision a Prerequisite to Conversion in Islam?
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Is Circumcision a Prerequisite to Conversion in Islam?

Questioner

Anonymous

Reply Date

Sep 11, 2019

Question

Islam talks about cleanliness. I am not circumcised, and I want to convert to Islam as soon as possible. I do not have the financial means to get the procedure done. Am I required to get circumcised before embracing Islam? Or am I supposed to do it at the time? I was told it is a very painful procedure. Please help me with this question.

Mufti

Answer


Is Circumcision a Prerequisite to Conversion in Islam?

In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful. 

All praise and thanks are due to Allah, and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger.


In this fatwa:

1- There is no such absolute requirement that you should get circumcised before you convert to Islam. It is up to you to decide when to do it. You may do it either before or after taking the formal shahadah (testimony of faith).

2- You need not worry about the procedure itself. So don’t let this thought hold you back unless you are suffering from some severe health complications that may adversely affect the healing process.


Responding to the question in point, Sheikh Ahmad Kutty, a senior lecturer and Islamic scholar at the Islamic Institute of Toronto, Ontario, Canada, states:

Circumcision for males is one of the important rites in Islam. The Prophet (peace be upon him) tells us that it is one of the five ingredients of natural religion and therefore part of the common legacy of Prophets (peace be upon them).

If lack of funds is holding you back from embarking on this procedure, there may be some Islamic centers or mosques that can assist you in this matter. You are eligible to apply for funds from zakah for this purpose.

As for your question whether you need to do it before converting to Islam, I should say, there is no such absolute requirement. It is up to you to decide when to do it. You may do it either before or after taking the formal shahadah (testimony of faith).

However, it is not recommended to postpone it indefinitely after you have embraced Islam.

You need not worry about the procedure itself. In most cases, it is not at all different from a minor surgery; it should normally take only a few days to heal. So don’t let this thought hold you back unless you are suffering from some severe health complications that may adversely affect the healing process.

If that is so in your specific case, then you need not undergo the procedure. This determination, however, is left to reliable, expert medical practitioners in the field. May Allah inspire us to do what is right and acceptable to Him.

Almighty Allah knows best.

Editor’s note: This fatwa is from Ask the Scholar’s archive and was originally published at an earlier date.




About Sheikh Ahmad Kutty

Sheikh Ahmad Kutty is a Senior Lecturer and an Islamic Scholar at the Islamic Institute of Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

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