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Can a shia sayed marry non sayed sunni?


I belong to a large and prominent practising Syed, Shia family Alhamdullilah . My family has for generations (since the start, as we are told) married within the family, to maintain the fortunate lineage, faith and grounding.
However, I have spent most of my time abroad, in Western countries. My parents have ensured that we have maintained out religious beliefs and have encouraged me to seek more knowledge and learn my religion, rather than just inherit it. I make the effort to pray all five namaz and fulfil other Islamic duties and attend Majalis and Jalsas; we host majalis and jalsas occasionally in our home as well.
I humbly ask for your advice for the religious ruling as per our faith and belief, and the relation of this to the cultural norms. I would be very grateful for your time in this regard and am indebted to you for your advice.
As I am growing older, it is also time to fulfill one of the tenants of our religion: marriage.
I do not e-mail you to ask for minor personal advice, but rather for your religious guidance in a time of confusion which has caused me great stress, and I am turning to religion for guidance, as I want to do the right thing and do not wish to violate any religious norms. Logically, it would be now time to pair with another member of my family, practicing Shia and Syed.
My question is: is it permissible to marry somebody who is not Shia or Syed, though I am both, if it does not stray my belief? If the other is a strong practicing Muslim, who is open and accepting of my faith, and willing to practice it to an extent as far as it does not clash with his Sunni belief? In this regard, would it be religiously wrong to put this forth to my parents, or would it be culturally taboo? I have never been in such a situation before, and I want to do it correctly and do not wish to disobey my faith at all. That is why I am e-mailing in this regard. It is very important to me, and I hope you will have the time to guide me.

I am not familiar with this, but do you believe Istikhara could be an option?

I ask for your guidance, and any suggestions you may have.


Wa alaykum salam

Thank you for your question

According to Islamic laws(fiqh), there is nothing wrong with marrying a Sunni or a non Syed.

As to whether you should raise this issue in front of your parents or not, totally depends on how open minded they are and what will be their reaction. If you decide that you want to go forward with this marriage, then you will have to look for ways to convey this to your parents.

But before you take any decision, I would like to ask you that is it really possible for people with two different beliefs to live side by side with one another. As you know marriage is not only a physical or an emotional union but it is also a spiritual union where two people side by side tread the path towards Allah swt’s pleasure with mutual respect and cooperation.

You must be aware that Sunnis don’t believe in one of the most fundamental beliefs of the Shia, which is the wilayah of our first Imam Ali a.s. Shias believe that without wilayah none of their deeds will be accepted and the only path towards felicitation (sa’adah) is through wilayah.

If you marry a Sunni Muslim who doesn’t believe in the wilayah of Imam Ali a.s,, will it be possible for you to spiritually grow together? Apart from that who will your children follow? what will be their belief?

I request you to think before taking any action.

Sukaina Taqavi