“You should have your hand cut off for stealing my heart.” This is probably the number one pick up line of ISIS.  No, scratch that. For ISIS, a pick up line probably just means ‘pick up the girl you like and put her in line with the others.’

Thankfully, this is not the case in most Islamic countries where even though love (dating, etc) is forbidden. People have found a way around it.

Let’s start with Iran, a place so rigid about its laws, that women are told to wipe clean their face before going to court so that there is not even a trace of lipstick, a place where boots are not allowed to be worn over the jeans because it is deemed too enticing; where dancing to a song called Happy, will make you end up jail along with 91 lashes. Now here, how would a man and woman (even the rich) meet, under the watchful eyes of the anti-love police?

Easy. One way is to meet on Iran Zamin street. Either park your car on the road and stand out waiting (posing is optional), or keep driving your car around in circles. Keep doing this until a woman or a group of women (this could take a while, so make sure your petrol tank is full) find you interesting enough to give you her/their number. It’s ok, you can stop the traffic while exchanging numbers. Everyone there is just waiting for that to happen to them anyway.

Now Nigeria is not a predominantly Muslim country. However, with the big presence of Boko Haram there, you might find this accepted practice a little surprising. Men usually force, yes force, the women they intend to marry, to get pregnant. Let’s read that again. They force the women to get pregnant, as this is the litmus test. Should they pass the “I am fertile” exam, only then will they marry them. If there is an issue with the man, of course, that is ignored, and another woman usually is brought into the picture.  Love normally comes attached with a baby there.

The extremely rich and other Muslim Nigerian men with some power, even if just the head of a village council, must have four wives. Not anywhere else in the world, do such happy wives exist. Wife number one is usually the head of the family, two would be the one who takes care of the children, three of the house and chores while the fourth would be the one to accompany the master, I mean husband, on outings, etc. It goes without saying, that wife number four will no doubt be the youngest. A Muslim man with just one wife? Ha! Laughable.

Pakistan! Now here, it is relatively easier to meet men and women. How? Well, 75% of the marriages are cousin marriages so you kind of have spent time with your potential spouse anyway.

If you just happened to have a crush your phupo’s daughter, how hard would it be to tell your mother you are going to your Aunt’s house.  Plus, with the average of five kids per family, I am sure you could latch yourself on to at least one sibling of your ‘love interest’ and use him as an excuse to visit.  The real trouble starts when you fall for someone outside of the family.

She has to be of the same religion, and when I say religion, I even mean sect, because all sects consider the other kafirs. Majalis and weddings are also good places to meet. For the parents I mean. They are usually the ones on the look out. It’s like the program “Soyambar”; only it’s done in one night, and by the parents.

Lastly, we have the amazing formidable Saudi Arabia. Men and women not related aren’t allowed to even dine together, so like the Iranians, they too have found a way. The women or men, drop little chits with their phone numbers nonchalantly at restaurants, etc. The other picks it up, they have conversations and if they hit it off, it is then taken to the next level. I am sure you are wondering where do they meet? There are mutawas (religious police) everywhere literally asking every couple to show their marriage certificate. So what is the number one dating spot in all of Saudi Arabia. The one place, where no religious man will ask you to prove you are married to the man you are sitting next to or even ask for your marriage certificate.

I’ll give you a hint, it has a big green clock and lots of hotels surrounding it.

I don’t think after this statement, any other country could beat this level of commitment to love.

 Shamila Ghyas is a fantasy fiction author, blogger, and freelancer who writes for Khabaristan Times. Follow her on Twitter