The Stoning Myth
Punishment Contradicts Qur’an Legislation and Islam:
1. It is not in Qur’an to stone the adulterer. However, the concept of stoning
and its derivatives in Qur’an came in the form of infidels’ threatening of
believers and prophets (Hud 91, Miriam 46, Dukhan 20, Yassine 18, Kahf 20,
Shua’ra 116). The stoning punishment was found in the contemporary Torah. The
Moslems were affected by that and adopted this punishment for married
adulterers. This is pure forging as far as Islam is concerned.
2. The punishment of adultery in Qur’an revealed as follows: The adulterers, in
case they are caught, shall be flogged 100 lashes in front of crowd of people.
The verse Al-Noor, The Light, started with this unique epilogue:” A verse, we
revealed and enforced. We revealed in it clear and confirmed verses, so you may
realize them”. Then Allah, almighty, immediately said:” The adulterers, male and
female, shall be flogged one hundred lashes. Never feel mercy with them in the
cause of Allah religion if you believe in Allah and the hereafter. Also, a flock
of believers shall witness their punishment”.
It is very difficult to prove the case of adultery. Also, it is difficult to
have a unanimous agreement on the occurrence of such act that results flogging.
However, it is easy to label a woman that she has bad reputation. Observations
might be increased on her bad reputation. Hence, there must be an appropriate
punishment for it after proving such bad behavior through four witnesses despite
not being caught. This punishment is not flogging. It is by preventing her from
mixing with people till she dies or repents and marries. However, this is a
negative punishment. God, almighty, says: “And those of your women commit the
sin, have four witnesses to prove it. If they testified against them, hold those
women in their houses till they die or God may find alternative path from them”.
Nissa’a 15. Once she declares her repentance, she will be set free or marry. She
will get rid of the characteristic of committing sin.
Also, details were mentioned in Qur’an in the case of an owned maid who commits
the sin. If she commits the sin under the authority of her owner (master) and
she was forced to do so, no punishment will be performed, as she has no choice.
God, Almighty, says: “ Do not force your maids to perform prostitution if they
decided to protect themselves so as to pursue the pleasures of this life. And
whoever was forced to do so, God is mostly forgiving and compassionate” Al-Noor
33. If the owned maid gets married and frees herself from her master’s authority
and commits adultery, her punishment shall be fifty lashes, i.e. half of the
punishment of married free women if they commit the same sin. God says: “ If
they get married, and commit the sin, their punishment shall be half of those
free married women”. Nissa’a 25.
In all cases, the adulterous woman, that is the one who does not repent, is not
allowed to marry a believer. This is an additional punishment. God, Almighty,
says: “The male adulterer marries only a female adulterer or an infidel and vice
versa. This marriage is not allowed for the believers”. Al-Noor 3.
Even Qur’an quotes a very remote example to individuals that might commit
adultery and their exempted punishment. This remote case was the Prophet wives.
In this case the punishment is two hundred (200) lashes. That’s to say, double
of the punishment for free married women. In same token, they have double of the
reward for good deeds of the others. God, Almighty, says: “ The women of the
Prophet, if any of you commit a proven sin, she shall be punished as twice as
the others, and that is surely easy for God to do. And those of you who fear God
and do good deeds, We shall reward her as twice as the others, and surely we
established for them an honorable reward”. Al-Ahzab 30,31. Since the punishment
here has been doubled, the occurrence of the crime has to be proven, as the
Quranic phrase “Whoever of you commit proven sin”. Here it is specific for the
Prophet women and it is of a great importance and needs to be proven.
The Quranic legislation describes the adultery punishments as a torture or
suffering. This means that the villain should stay alive. In other words, no
place here fro stoning as it means death. Qur’an, when it mentioned the adultery
punishment, did not specify the marital status of the sinner. It came as generic
and the punishment was generic also. It says one hundred lashes (100) flogging.
So flogging is the suffering.
In case of the owned maid that commits adultery after her marriage, her
punishment shall be fifty lashes (50) as God, Almighty, said in Nissa’a 25. So,
it was described as suffering. So, those who advocate the stoning of the married
person are ignoring God’s saying of half the punishment. Is it possible to halve
the stoning? Is there “half” death?
In case of the Prophet women, the Quranic legislation says:” If any one of you,
the women of the Prophet, commits a proven sin, the punishment shall be as
doubled”. It described the flogging as double the suffering. Is it possible to
“double” the stoning? Does the person die twice? Can stoning twice kill the
If the man failed to prove that his wife committed adultery and failed to
provide witnesses, he can swear before the judge by God four times that he is
right. He also, swears for the fifth time that the wrath of God be upon him if
he was a liar. In reciprocation, the wife can defend herself by swearing four
times by God she is innocent. The fifth would be the wrath of God is upon her if
her husband was truthful. This is called “curse” situation. This was revealed in
Al-Noor 6-9. What’s important here that God described this punishment as
“suffering” or “tormenting”. So, the punishment of the married adulterer is
flogging and not stoning. Also, Qur’an legislations deal with an alive adulterer
after executing the punishment. Qur’an prohibits the marriage from an adulterer
who is addictive to adultery. Al-Noor verse 3 explains that fact. These
legislations might not be there if the punishment was death. It also, applies
for additional punishment on the divorced adulterer that prohibits her from
leaving the house or re-marrying till she pays back some of her dowry.
Moreover, God, almighty, threatens the adulterers to multiply the punishment and
stay in it for eternity in the Day of Resurrection if they died insisting on
committing this sin. Of course, those who repent shall be exempted. Those God
shall replace their sins with rewards. God said in this aspect: “ For those, the
tormenting shall be multiplied in the Day of Resurrection and they will stay
humbled in it for eternity. Those who repent and do good deeds, their sins shall
be replaced with rewards. God is truly the most forgiving and compassionate”.
Al-Forqan, 69-70. if the fate of the fate of the adulterer is stoning and hence
death, there would not be any chance for repentance and doing good deeds to
replace his/her sins. Also, the characterization of adulterer would be dropped
to be replaced by the good repentant. God, Almighty, says: “Do not kill the soul
that God made it sacred except with righteousness.” Ana’m 151, Isra’a 33. Also,
in Forqan 68, God, Almighty, says: “And those who do not believe in any god but
Allah, and do not kill the sacred soul but in righteousness and do not commit
adultery, whoever does this will gain sins.” It is forbidden to kill the soul
except in punishment and this is the Quranic right. The most sacred thing is the
human soul and its right in life. In the same token, the biggest crime is
killing this soul that created by God. The absolute crime is to devise a
legislation that kills this pure soul and then attribute this to God, Almighty,
and his Messenger.
The Lie of Stoning in Narrations (Hadith):
1. Although the stoning punishment was invented in Abbasid era, it was never
unanimously approved. The contemporary Sunnah scholars admit that Al-Mu’tazala
and Rejectionist (Khawarej) rejected the stoning. (Sayyed Sabiq, Sunnah
Scholarship, 2/347, the Encyclopedia of Scholarship based on the four dogmas,
5/69 written by Abdel-Rahman Al-Jazzeeri).
2. The oldest narrations about stoning were mentioned in Nowata of Malik in a
narration by Mohammad Ibn Hassan Sheibani. The narration started as: (Malik told
us that Yahya Ibn Saeed heard Saeed Ibn Mossayyab said: When Omar Ibn Al-Khattab
came from Mina …etc). That means the original narrator of this anecdote was
Saeed Ibn Mossayyab. He claimed that Omar delivered an oration claiming the
existence of the stoning verse in Qur’an, but it was omitted. However, Ibn
Mossayyab was two years old when Omar was assassinated. How can a crawling baby
telling stories about Omar. So, it is impossible for Ibn Mossayyab to be the
narrator. Also, it is impossible for Omar to say something like that. It means
that Omar accused the Qur’an of being forged and this is blasphemy. God,
Almighty, said: “We revealed this Qur’an, and we are protecting it.” Al-Hijr 9.
So, as far as the subject, this narration is false. In this narration, they
attribute a verse to stoning that says:” The senile man and women shall be
stoned if they commit adultery”. It is very well known the concept of senile
does not indicate the marital status. One can reach this stage and stays single.
Mohammad Ibn Hassan Sheibani felt this shortcoming in the meaning and realized
by commenting on another narration about the Jewish adulterers (Narration no.
694):( Any Moslem man committed adultery with a woman and was married to a free
Moslem woman and copulated with her, and then he shall be stoned. This is the
“married” man. If he did not copulate with her or she was A Jewish or Christian,
then he is not married and no stoning. He shall be flogged with hundred lashes.
This is the saying of Abu Haneefah and the majority of scholars). Sheibani (a
student to Abu Haneefah and one of the two scholars in the Hanafis) put a
specific definition and a correction to the narration of stoning related to Omar
that included adulterous “senile” people. In his definition, “senile” was no
longer the criterion for stoning the married adulterer, but also, the Moslem who
married a free Moslem woman. However, the one who married a Jew or a Christian,
his marriage is not complete and no punishment for his adultery.
3. There is another anecdote in Mowata no. 692. This anecdote is completely
false under all measures. Malik narrated this anecdote from Ibn Shehab
(Al-Zuhry) who narrated this by himself. Al-Zuhry lived towards the end of the
Umayyad era and was one of the followers who never met the Prophet, peace be
upon him, or lived his time. Even though we read the following in Mowata: (Malik
told us that Ibn Shehab told us that a man admitted committing adultery during
the reign of the Prophet. The man testified against himself and was ordered to
be stoned. Ibn Shehab said: For this, one can incriminate himself by
4. The narrations were iterated after Malik. Shafi’e, Bukhari and Moslem wrote
them. Sometimes these narrations claim that certain verses in Qur’an did exist
and omitted. Bukhari, died yr 256 A.H., narrated from Omar Ibn Khattab, who died
200 years before him, about verses that were omitted from Qur’an and Omar
declared them late. Some of these narrations claim that the stoning rite was
stemmed from the monkey’s society before Islam. Bukhari narrated in his anecdote
no. 3560:” Naeem Ibn Hmmad told us about Hasheem about Amr Ibn Meimoun saying: I
saw before Islam a bunch of monkeys stoning an adulterous monkey, and I did the
same with them. It seems that the monkeys’ society before Islam was ahead in
applying the stoning. Anybody asked about this monkey’s marital status? Did the
narrator discuss this issue with the Clergy of the monkeys and how to prove the
occurrence of adultery? Did the monkeys use four witnesses? All of these
narrations contradicting themselves.
5. Contradiction in narrations:
Contradiction is the main characteristic of Narrations. Two kinds of
contradictory characters appear in narrations: partial contradiction in the
details of the same story, and major contradiction among different stories. As
an example of the latter, Bukhari produced a narration about a man came to the
Prophet and admitted committing adultery. The prophet avoided him. The prayer
time came and the man witnessed the prayer with the Prophet. He reiterated his
confession to the Prophet and demanded to be punished. The prophet said to him:
did you not pray with us? The man said: yes. The Prophet said: God forgave your
sin. This means that prayer forgives the sins and negates the stoning. This is a
stark contradiction with other narrations that are damped with the stoned
While Bukhari, Shafi’e and Malik narrations emphasized that the punishment for
the married adulterer is only stoning, we found that Moslem narrated repeated
stories emphasizing in them that the Prophet said: The punishment of the single
is 100 lashes and one year exile. The married punishment is 100 lashes then
stoning. The danger in these narrations that it made the punishment for the
married adulterer was 100 lashes before being killed stoning. This is another
contradiction with other narrations.
These stories and anecdotes were written in the books of narrations to become
major source of legislation for Moslems. Especially, when the scholars and the
storytellers celebrated them and everyone re-iterated these narrations as “real”
and “rites”. This was emphasized by the application of these narrations that
sent many men and women victims to death based on legislation God never