There is no explicit directive of the Sharī`ah
which forbids masturbation. In other words, it is silent on this issue.
Consequently, it cannot be regarded as a sin. The verses from which its
prohibition is usually derived, I am afraid, have another meaning.
The opinions of some of the companions of the Prophets
reproduced below from Ibn Hazam’s al-Muhallā (Vol:11, pp. 393-4) indicate that
they did not forbid it:
Ibn `Abbās: i) Marrying a slave girl is better than it,
and it is better than fornication (zinā).
ii) It is nothing but rubbing one’s private parts until
a fluid comes out.
Ibn `Umar: i) A person who does makes a fool of himself.
ii) It is merely rubbing an organ.
Jābir Ibn Zayd: It is your water; you can discharge it
[if you want].
Hasan Basrī: There is no harm in it.
At best, masturbation can be termed as an undesirable
act similar in nature to the emotions of anger and hate. Such emotions are
generally against good conduct, and a person should try to control them as
much as possible. However, there may be situations when they may play a
somewhat positive role -- especially when they save you from a sin.