Is It Sinful and Leads to Disbelief to Befriend Homosexuals and Atheists?

Answered by Mawlana Ilyas Patel


I have a question that has occupied my mind for so long and caused me much distress.

As Muslims, in the Quran, it is stated that we are to hate and reject atheists and homosexuals. I couldn’t bring myself to do that, I have friends that are atheists, and some are homosexuals, does that count as a sin that I’m befriending homosexuals and atheists even though the Quran states that it is a sin to be like them?

My Brother said that disagreeing with anything in the Quran makes me “non-Muslim.”

I’m a Muslim and want to remain a Muslim, I want to pray but without doubt and conflict in my head about my social beliefs and my religion.


In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful and Compassionate

I pray you are well. Thank you for your question.

Islam, like other major world religions, prohibits categorically all forms of same-sex behavior. We have to be sincere to our Abrahamic values; it necessitates belief in a moral code, in accountability in the Hereafter. As a Muslims, we have a moral compass, like others, they also believe, and they claim to have a moral compass. We believe in a Maker and Creator; He has given us a manual and guide of what is good and evil.

It is unfortunate that modern society is making us constantly believe daily with the unchallenged idea that same-sex attraction is natural, acceptable and not a sin. Just like society is wanting us to believe in something they hold now as a value and lifestyle, we have values, and we need to work in a compassionate way to get the people to see and experience our values that is from Allah (Most High), a higher system of reality and values, and show others what our purpose is, where we are going and to Whom we shall return.

Befriending Homosexuals and Atheists

If you have friends who are homosexuals and atheists, it will not make you sinful, neither it is disbelief, but like with all things in life, we always look for friendship and companionship who can benefit us in what we do, believe in, whether at work or study and not move us away from our values and lifestyle. If it happens to be that you have friends like this, you study and work with them with respect, not hate them, but hate the sin, like we would do if someone was committing another type of sin and pray to Allah (Most High) to always keep you away from it, as it has become a type of lifestyle, and not just a sin in itself. This is what your brother was worried about.

The Quran, Prophetic teachings and the sharia tells us to seek the best of company and who we mix with, for ourselves, spiritually and otherwise for our day-to-day life, work and studies.  The Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) said, “A man’s religion is like that of his close friend, so let each of you look at whom he keeps close friendship with.” [Abu Dawud, Tirmidhi, Ahmad]

Our life commitment as a Muslim, should be that we have as many practicing Muslim friends as we can, which Allah (Most High) has made a sunna because we don’t know which of our believing friends may intercede for us in the Hereafter.

Where Can I Find Good Company?
Friendship With Non-Muslims: Explaining Verse 5:51

Why not begin your search for knowledge by signing up for a course on Seekersguidance?

May Allah (Most High) give you ease and relief from the illness.

I pray this helps with your question.
[Mawlana] Ilyas Patel
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Mawlana Ilyas Patel is a traditionally-trained scholar who has studied in the UK, India, Pakistan, Syria, Jordan, and Turkey. He started his early education in the UK. He went on to complete the hifz of the Quran in India, then enrolled in an Islamic seminary in the UK, where he studied the secular and ‘Aalimiyya sciences. He then traveled to Karachi, Pakistan. He has been an Imam in Rep of Ireland for several years. He has taught hifz of the Quran, Tajwid, Fiqh, and many other Islamic sciences to children and adults onsite and online extensively in the UK and Ireland. He taught at a local Islamic seminary for 12 years in the UK, where he was a librarian and a teacher of Islamic sciences. He currently resides in the UK with his wife. His interest is a love of books and gardening.