Muslim sex shop launched online

2010-03-30 19:08

The Hague - Candid but demure, an online sex shop for Muslims has been launched in the Netherlands to tap into a demand for erotica that does not offend shari’ah law.

"We had about 70 000 hits in the first four days," founder Abdelaziz Aouragh told AFP of his site that went online last week and claims to be the world's first erotic webshop for Muslims.

The 29-year-old Dutch national said it targets married Muslim couples as an alternative to sites "that focus on pornography and the extravagant side of erotica" - things forbidden in Islam.

The home page of El Asira, which means "Society" in Arabic, is a sober black and grey street with a line down the centre, inviting women to enter on the left and men on the right.

No porn

Once inside, clients can browse in Dutch, Arabic or English through more than a dozen products, mainly massage oils, lubricants and tablets that claim to act as aphrodisiacs.

All ingredients are halaal, or "permissible under Islam", said Aouragh, and conspicuously absent are dildos, vibrators and any type of pornography.

"Most of the other products out there have pictures of naked people or foul language - it was very difficult to find ones that I could use in my business," he said.

Instead, the website shows only photos of boxes, tablets, tubes and bottles - mainly in pink or blue with the brand's logo, a black flame.

"We have chosen a respectful approach," it says, proclaiming itself "a novelty in the Islamic world".

In one sense, it is also a very Dutch product - like Aouragh himself. Of Moroccan parentage, he was born and raised in Amsterdam and remains a practicing Muslim while embracing typically Dutch tolerance and search for consensus.

Stereotypes

He says he, like many, used to think Islam looked upon sexuality as taboo until his friend-turned business partner Stefan Delsink prompted him to look further.

"There is a very stereotypical idea both inside and outside the community on Muslim sexuality," he said.

So Aouragh, who is married, set about consulting Islamic religious leaders and scholars to see what his business venture could sell and to whom.

"I have learnt a lot about what Islam says about sexuality, about how important it is to have a healthy sex life," he said.

Muslim clerics like Dutch Imam Abdul Jabbar see no harm in Aouragh's site.

"As long as he doesn't sell sex toys or those sorts of things there is no problem," he told AFP, adding: the Prophet Mohammed gave lots of advice about sex in marriage and "there need not be any shame".

Muslim immigrants

Aouragh, who also works for a firm that provides assistance to disabled people in public places like airports, contends his website has another goal, amidst tension over Muslims and Muslim immigrants in Europe.

In the Netherlands - where Muslims account for 5% of the 16.5 million population - strains have continued since filmmaker Theo Van Gogh was murdered in 2004 by an Islamic extremist upset over a documentary he made on Muslim women.

Today, support is growing for the far-right, anti-Islamic Party for Freedom (PVV), which some polls suggest is the country's most popular formation. Its leader Geert Wilders wants to ban the Quran, which he likens to Hitler's Mein Kampf, and wants a tax on wearing head scarves.

"Everybody is talking about Islam in a negative way," said Aouragh. "I am trying to get something positive out of the dark."

"Muslims also have to deal with stereotypical prejudices by some non-Muslims on the topic of sexuality within Islam," he said.

"We want to share with other Muslims in a positive way our contribution to a broader view of sexuality and eroticism within the Muslim community," the website says, "for Muslims themselves, as for others".

Not all want to enter the debate. Leyla Cakir, chair of the Dutch Muslim women's organisation Al Nisa, told AFP: "This is not a topic with which we choose to involve ourselves."

Read more on:    netherlands  |  offbeat  |  internet
NEXT ON NEWS24X

Nothing for Mahala!

2013-10-09 09:02
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

 

Inside News24

 
/News
 

Africa: Land of Billionaires!

Find out who are the richest of the richest in Africa!

 
 

Men24.com

Best bro movies 2014
Every man should be able to do these three things
Goalkeeper saves five penalties with his FACE!
Hottie of the day: Jesselyn

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Hot festive offers at kalahari.com!

Hurry! Stocks are limited. Don’t miss out. Shop Now!

Save up to 60% on toys!

Don’t miss out on this hot offer, save up to 60% on toys. While stocks last. Shop now!

Festive gifts!

Check out our awesome range of festive gifts to make everyone’s wishes come true. Shop now!

Seen something you like in our catalogue?

Find the perfect gift and save up to R5000 – As seen on the catalogue. Hurry and shop now!

Save up to R2200 on electronics! – As seen in the catalogue

Wishing for tech gadgets this festive? Save up to R2100 on hot tech products at kalahari.com. While stocks last. Shop now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

You may feel divided. Conflict between mind and emotions can create tension or indecision. This could lead to stressful feelings...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.