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The Boundary of Male Awrah in Islam

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Awrah (private parts according to Islam) in Arabic is known as “An-Naqsu” which means less or shame, while in terms means something that should not be seen or shown to others. Awrah is often associated with women, whereas in Islam, males also have the obligation to conceal their awrah with the limits or guidance that already set in the Islamic shari’a (law) since the existance of Islam is to protect the honor and noble of man and woman so as not to be seen by others except by who has the right to see it. Learn more about : how a woman should dress in Islam


Allah gave a commandment that said,

“Tell thrring awrah can be said as one of the way keep out from adultery.

For more details, these are the following explanation concerning the boundary of male awrah in Islam.

Awrah Fellow (Between) Males

In daily life, male awrah is generally not too noticed, men are rarely considered as the cause an emergence of lust like women did.

Often encountered in the daily life when men wearing tight clothes and pants, wearing shorts up to the knees, even when in relaxed conditions such as at home or sports around the house, men only wear shorts and tight up on the knee and showing up his chest till his stomach and navel. Somethings like that could just cause lust and ease satan to launch their trickery.

The hadith and commandment of Allah below will explained how an obligatory of males clothes according to the Islam shari’a.

  • The Males Awrah are Between Navel and Knee

Rasulullah ever said,

“Because between navel until knee is awrah.” (Narrated by Ahmad)

These also applied between brothers and sisters, either with relatives, friends, or others. If exposing the body parts within the boundaries of the awrah are include as sinful because they do not performing the command of Allah SWT to conceal their awrah according to the Islamic shari’a.

So if a male believer wears shorts above his knees, obviously it is not in accordance to the Islamic shari’a. Allah loves his obedient servant, including his servants who keep His commandments in relation on covering his awrah. If the Islamic religion shari’a is truly done than it will give benefits and prevent from evil deeds (munkar), and vice versa.

  • Men Are Not Justified to Wear Short Pants up to His Knee

Because the thigh also belongs to awrah, in the Hadith of Jurhud, when the Prophet Muhammad SAW passes through it and the cloth covering his thigh is exposed, later he said :

“Conceal it (your thy), for it is aurat”. (Narrated by Malik).

This is also strengthened with the following hadith

“Do not show your thighs and also do not see the thighs of people who are still alive or dead” (Narrated by Abu Dawud)

It is clear from that hadiths we can concluded that men are also required to wear a decent dress, conceal the awrah and not showing his thighs to others. Generally thighs are associated with women, women who dress but not to covering her awrah until her thighs seen by others are identified as women who are not religious and other prejudices.

We have to avoid prejudices and it is better for Muslim to also learn how to avoid negative thoughs,  in fact not only women, men who show his thighs are also clearly not justified according to Islam. The law of looking at women’s awrah in Islam is clearly not allowed just like men.

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  • Men Are Not Allowed to Seen Another Men Awrah

Even they are brothers or close friends,

“And do not a man seen other manawrah….and a man should not be with another man in one cloth.” (Narrated by Muslim)

In the daily life for example a man who lives in a same place like a boarding house or a rented house, or are in a same matter such as hospitality (silaturahmi) by gathered together, sometimes fellow men wear clothes that he thinks are the most comfortable such as a very short clothes and pants cause they assuming that with a fellow man it does not matter wearing that kind of clothes, but that matter is not justified in Islam as described with the above hadith, so even though fellow men gathered or are in the same place either at home or wherever they still obligated to conceal his full awrah. Learn more about : benefits of modesty in Islam

  • Not Allowed on Wearing Thin and Tight Clothes

In the view of Islam this matter are as same as not wearing a clothes (naked}, cause it shown up the body curves,

“O children of Adam, We have bestowed upon you clothing to conceal your private parts and as adornment. But the clothing of righteousness – that is best. That is from the signs of Allah that perhaps they will remember.” (QS. Al A’raf : 26)

An example in daily life is a sportswear which men generally wears a thin and very tight clothes and shorts until the shape and curve of his body is clearly seen while in that place there are so many men and women who are not his mahram, because that will cause on lust.

It is better to wear a loose clothes or a jacket while exercising, beside its fit with Islamic shari’a, also make yourself feel more comfortable.

Another example is a man shorts and tight shirts so when he bends his body his back is shown. It can be concluded that men should wear a polite and loose dresses, not thin, and not shaping the body. Since we also have to know the ethical values of Islam on our daily life.

Awrah of Men with Women

The boundary of men’s awrah and other women not his mahram is same as the boundary of awrah between men, which is within his navel and knee, with the rules as follow :

  • Not Arousing Lust

It is way better for men to wear a decent clothes and conceal their awrah, do not wear flashy clothes in order to be seen by women, to look attractive, or with an intention to invite a lust.

  • Not in One Assembly (Face to Face)

It is not permissible for men and women to be close to or face to face sincec it may cause slander. There are various kinds of slander pal, including awrah that could trigger to it. Males awrah should only be shown to his wife as the following hadith of Rasulullah :

“Take care of yourawrah except from your wife.” (Narrated by Imam Lima)

So men are required to conceal his awrah wherever and with whoever he is unless while with his wife.

Awrah While Performing Prayer

Conceal awrah also one of the valid requirement in worship, Allah said,

 “O children of Adam, take your adornment at every masjid.” (QS. Al A’raf : 31)

Prayer is a worship where someone is directly face to face with Allah, so it should be wearing a decent clothes as a form submissive servant’s and honor to his Lord as said in the hadith of Rasulullah

“Conceal awrah when standing prayer before Allah is a form of exaltation towards Him” (Narrated by Al-Bada’i : 116)

Male awrah is within the navel to his knee, but various hadith narrated that when praying we should wear more covered clothes which covering the upper body (shoulders), Rasulullah ever forbade someone praying only wear a piece of cloth that does not conceal his shoulders at all.

Narrated by Buraidah,

“Rasulullah forbade a person to pray using a blanket without covering it on the shoulders and forbid praying that only wear a pants without a scarf (cloth covering shoulders).” 

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The above hadith shown that it is an obligation to conceal the upper body while praying. Learn more about : how to increase iman in Islam

It is proper when prayer is accompanied by every best thing, namely by wearing beautiful clothes, clean, and pure. If in front of human alone we try to wear good clothes, then how if we are in the presence of Allah? Of course you have to understood how the best clothes used while worshiping Him, for example by wearing a koko shirt or loose shirt.

Thus, an article on the boundaries of male awrah in Islam, every man must understand this since it directly related to the daily routine where men who will be the head of a family and the example for his family, certainly should be able to give an advice and role model.

It is inappropriate for a man to be always prejudiced against a woman who does not close her awrah perfectly while he is also imperfectly covering his awrah.

Later for men they should introspection of themselves from now on whether they have been wearing a clothes that conceal awrah according to the command of Allah? Self-preservation is also an obligation as an Islamic men, in order to avoid the temptation of satan and immorality. Hopefully it will be useful thanks.

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