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Thursday, November 24, 2011

Do Not Forget Mum


| Mîrhân Muhsin|



A woman is naturally endowed to endure the physical, mental, and emotional stress of bearing a child in her womb for nine months. She has a heart endowed with love and compassion, and as a new mother, her eyes are made for sleepless nights, while her days are filled with worry and concern. She is, by instinct, a mother.

Great poets have written about the mother’s love – how she gives without limits, teaches so much, seeking nothing from her children in return. Our mothers have always been honored.

Times, alas, are changing. The new generation is neglecting its mothers like never before. Children have begun to leave their aging mothers in nursing homes, often abandoning them there, not even visiting them.

We spoke to one mother living in a nursing home in Cairo. She admits that her children are punctual in sending her the money that she needs to pay for her apartment at the nursing home, but she says that there is something more important than that. She needs to be treated with. She needs her children’s love and support.

She says: “I chose willingly to live in a nursing home after my husband’s death, my children being so busy with their lives. What makes me angry was how eagerly my children accepted the idea. None of them even offered to live with them at their home. That is when I realized how much a burden another person is – even a mother. At the home, I have made friends with other old ladies, and they save me from loneliness, but I still give the door a lot of long looks, hoping that one of my of my children will come visit me.”

We met with another, in this case a woman whose children were the ones who decided to put her in the nursing home, because they were all too busy to take care of her. Those children completely forgot their mother’s rights over them. They became so busy with their own lives that they that they neglected their mother entirely. They did not even remember her on `Îd. The mother has fallen into a deep silence. She does not speak at all. She just cries when her children are mentioned to her.

Fâtimah Rayyis, 75, is a mother of three. She says: “These days, the old idea of mothers and children has been turned on its head. In the old days, an elderly mother was revered and cared for in every way by her children. Today, children deny their parents everything.”

About her own experience, Fâtimah says: “Among my own children, there are some who – praise Allah – treat me well, care for me when I am sick, and always show me attention. Then there are others who never even ask about me except maybe once a year. I understand that he is busy, but it seems like he has forgotten that he even has a mother. His coldness and indifference really hurt. He is my oldest son. Nevertheless, I pray for him. I never let myself get angry with him, because I am scared that Allah might punish him.”

Widâd `Abd al-Ghaffâr, over seventy years old, has a son and a daughter. She considers the neglectfulness of children these days to be the most negative development in contemporary Muslim society. She claims that children need to realize that elderly mothers have needs, especially if they are widows, living all alone at home while her children are busy with their own lives. This is very bad for her mental and emotional state.

Children need to understand that their mothers’ psychological needs are greater at this time in their lives. A mother may not demand anything from her children, but at this sensitive age, she merely needs emotional support. The simplest show of kindness can make her happy. At the same time, a simple act of neglect can make her feel like a burden.

Najwâ al-`Ishmawî, a mother of four who has recently seen her seventieth birthday, points out that children, from an early age, watch how their parents treat their grandparents. This is how they learn what is expected from them when their parents grow old. A lot of people who neglect their parents find themselves, when they grow old, neglected in turn by their children. It is a case of “what goes around, comes around”.

Najwâ mentions one such case, a women who devoted everything to her children, even forsaking remarriage for the sake of her children. However, she died alone and neglected.

Najwâ, speaking about her own situation, adds: “I praise Allah that my own children treat me well. They never neglect me. I believe this is because I instilled in them strong religious values since they were very small.”

Islam Enjoins Kindness to Parents

Sheikh Mahmûd `Âshûr, former rector of al-Azhar University, believes that is a religion of social support in every way, and that the family is a key unit of mutual support. Islam lends strength to the family, so that it will have the strength to fulfill this important role. The Qur’ân speaks at length about the family, outlining the religious teachings that govern it. It encourages kindness to parents and commands that family ties be upheld. It makes neglecting parents a sin. Islam directly addresses the rights of the family. Islam is not merely a set of beliefs, but it is also a social system that addresses every aspect of society. This is why we still see in Muslim societies around the world a greater level of care for parents, children, and grandparents than we see elsewhere.

Allah says: “Worship Allah, and join not any partners with Him; and do good- to parents, kinsfolk, orphans, those in need, neighbors who are near, neighbors who are strangers, the companion by your side, the wayfarer (ye meet), and what your right hands possess: For Allah loves not the arrogant, the vainglorious.” [Sûrah al-Nisâ’: 36]

Allah also says: “We have enjoined on humankind kindness to parents.” [Sûrah al-`Ankabût: 8]

We see that Islam enjoins kindness to parents and close relatives. It does not stop their. It even commands that we show kindness and honor to our parents’ friends, extending the sphere of the elderly people who receive attention from the younger generation to include all of the elderly.

Indeed, Islam describes the person who fails to acknowledge the rights of the elderly to be someone undeserving of attribution to the Muslim community. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “He is not one of us who fails to show mercy to our children and honor to our elders.”

The elderly need to be shown kindness and affection. They need to be given cause for joy. Islam regards making other people happy to be one of the greatest acts of religious devotion to Allah. The duty to honor the elderly falls on each of us, starting with our closest relatives – our parents – and then extending from them to others.






Being part of the society in which we are existing, the expression/thought of modesty and righteousness may appear to be outmoded. Today’s woman, though modern, cultured and unshackled, is more oppressed than any woman in the most culturally oppressive village in Afghanistan. The oppression does not mean an inability to choose one’s clothing, one’s life style or one’s friends. The oppression is our inability to see the ingresses being made in the peace and tranquillity of a chaste society and unearth the real face of the crumbling society. The oppression is an idea that a woman’s beauty is public and that beauty admiration is equal to respect.

      If one can step out of this society/circle in which he/she lives one may be able to see the reality, which, being part of the society/circle, one cannot see. One cannot analyse that the highest paid woman are those who expose themselves to the public display, like actresses, models and even strip-tease dancers. If some how it becomes possible to detach oneself from the society/circle for some time, one will be able to see that the relationship between men and women is unfairly stacked in the men’s direction. A woman dresses to attract man and lives in a false state of living according to her own wishes, or living the way she feels like. It is a painful reality, even if one does not believe in it, that the woman feels pleased when she is admired by a man, and a man admires a woman who exposes herself to him, in keeping with his impious needs. It is not liberty, it can, however, be termed as exploitation of women by men, the exploitation taken by women as approbation. There is no way for a person to know that he is dirty if he has never been clean, similarly the oppressed person will never know about oppression till he/ she comes out of the darkness of that oppression. It is not oppression to protect yourself and society; instead oppression is to voluntarily throw yourself into the quagmire while denying it is dirty. A woman should be judged by society for her mind, soul and heart instead of loveliness and hype. A woman can make people respect herself by her self-respecting attitude, by refusing to become a source of hilarity and pleasure for the lewd men. A thinking mind, an insightful heart and an untainted soul should be able to analyse the events and adopt a suitable life style rather than following what is happening in the society or what is in vogue. The (metaphorically) ignorant, deaf, dumb, blind and void of wisdom, insist on doing what their forefathers had been doing “even though their fathers were void of wisdom and guidance”1. Ask the prettiness and loveliness saga from the women who have crossed the age of being stunning, pretty or appealing, a woman who has crossed the age of having an attractive body, irrespective of beauty of her character and spirit. 

      A woman should be able to carry out an in-depth analysis of the dress, outfit and interaction with the men, in vogue in the society and assess the genesis of the attire, costume and relation with men. She may discover certain sneaky facts, which were, perhaps, not known to her. Why a woman is lured to put on dresses wherein she is exposed to the men? The modern women may deny the fact and claim these dresses as their own choice out of their own free will etc. but the truth remains unchanged, that, it is only to quench the immodest desires of the male. Man has duped woman by ensnaring them in a magnificence/approbation syndrome. Has, ever, a man praised a good heart a clean soul and a chaste character of a woman; conversely, beauty of a woman is admired because it suits the lecherous desires of a man. Its time for us, the members of society, to take an account of our deeds and re-establish the forgotten principles concerning the good and the bad and adopt a way of life which will take us out of the quagmire in which the society is sinking at the moment. 

      The virtuous women are advised to “lower their gaze, guard their modesty and they should not display their beauty and ornaments except what must ordinarily appear thereof. They should cover themselves well (with care), cast their outer garments over their persons (when outside): that is most convenient that they should be known as such and not molested. They should not be seen (without a careful covering of themselves) except to their husbands their fathers their husbands' fathers their sons their husbands' sons their brothers or their brothers' sons or their sisters' sons or small children who have no sense of the shame of sex. They should not strike their feet in order to draw attention to their hidden ornaments”2. “Such elderly women who have passed the prospect of marriage there is no blame on them if they lay aside their (outer) garments provided they make not a wanton display of their beauty: but it is best for them to be modest”3.  Such women will attain bliss. “Impure women are for impure men and impure men are for impure women; and women of purity are for men of purity and men of purity are for women of purity”4. The most reverential women are the ones “who believe in God, devout, true, patient, constant, humble, who give charity, who fast (and deny themselves),  who guard their chastity and who engage much in God's praise for them has God  prepared forgiveness and great reward”5. A reward much valuable than few dollars.

      For a sterilized society, the most valuable object is chastity, of men and women, at all times, before marriage, during marriage and after the dissolution of marriage. Those guilty of illicit practices must be shutout of the marriage circle of chaste men and women. A woman deserves to be protected with great care; the worst are the ones who humiliate women through putting forward slanders or scandalous suggestions about them without adequate sanity. “If anything is said against a woman's chastity, it should be supported by evidence twice as strong as would ordinarily be required for business transactions, or even in murder cases.  Failing such preponderating evidence, the slanderer should himself be treated as a wicked transgressor and punished severely”6. Slandering "chaste women and chaste men, must be punished, however slandering women is more abhorrent.

      As mothers, best of the women are the one who, instead of doing what is done in society, can teach their child (the future of society/mankind):- "O my child!" if there be the weight of a mustard-seed and it were hidden in a rock or anywhere in the heavens or on earth it will be brought forth one day, so take an account of your deeds. "O my child “enjoin what is just and forbid what is wrong: and bear with patient constancy whatever happens to you; for this is firmness of purpose in the conduct of affairs. "And swell not your cheek (for pride) at human beings nor walk in insolence through the earth; because arrogance is detrimental and you can neither split the earth asunder nor reach the mountains in height. "And be moderate in your pace and lower your voice; for the harshest of sounds, without doubt, is the braying of the ass. “Do you not see that all things in the skies and on earth flow to you in exceeding measure (both) seen and unseen? Yet there are among the people who do not understand and deny the facts, in arrogance, without knowledge and without guidance” 7. You must understand that there is only one reality and “whatever else is invoked besides that, is falsehood”8. That reality is most high, most great, exalted in power, full of wisdom and “if all the trees on earth were pens and the ocean were ink with seven oceans behind it to add to its supply, yet that reality would not be exalted (in the writing)”9. That reality is the one who speaks to one of his beloved humans, son of a chosen woman (chosen above the women of all nations), “O Jesus the son of Mary! Recount my favor to you and to your mother.  Behold! I strengthened you with the Holy Spirit so that you speak to the people in childhood and in maturity. Behold! I taught you the Book and Wisdom the Law and the Gospel. And behold! You make out of clay as it were the figure of a bird by My permission and your breath into it and it become a bird by My permission and you heal those born blind and the lepers by My permission. And behold! You bring forth the dead by My permission”10.

      The most honorable members of a society are the ones who (instead of admiration hunt) “humble themselves, avoid vain talk and are active in deeds of kindness. These are the ones who abstain from sex, except with those joined to them in the marriage bond (but those whose desires exceed those limits are transgressors). These are the ones who faithfully observe their trust and their covenants”11. “These are the ones who walk on the earth in humility and when the ignorant address them they honorably avoid them. These are the ones who spend (complete or portion of) the night in adoration, in thinking and in a positive meditation. These are the ones who wish and strive to avert, from them, the wrath of grievous affliction (which is) evil indeed as an abode and as a place to rest in. These are the ones who, when spend, are not extravagant and not niggardly but they hold a just balance between those extremes. These are the ones who do not slay life as it has been made sacred except for just cause. These are the ones who do not commit fornication (and anyone that does this not only meets punishment but he dwell in ignominy. unless one repents, believes and works righteous deeds. Some day evil of such persons may be chanced into good). These are the ones who witness no falsehood and if they pass by futility they pass by it with honorable avoidance. These are the ones who when are advised with the truth, droop not down as if they were deaf or blind”12. These are the people who, “when listen to the truth, you will see their eyes overflowing with tears for they recognize the truth: they pray: "Our Lord! We believe; write us down among the witnesses”13. These are the ones “who wish to be granted unto them offspring who will be the comfort of their eyes and they desire to lead the righteous. These are the ones who will be rewarded with the highest place because of their patient constancy; therein shall they be met with salutations and peace”14. Salutations and peace from someone, there is “none other like him. He knows (all things) both secret and open; he is most gracious and most merciful. There is someone, there is none other like him the sovereign the holy one the source of peace and perfection.  The guardian the preserver of safety the exalted in might the irresistible the supreme: glory to him! (High is he). There is someone, there is none other like him the creator the evolver the bestower of forms or colors.  To him belong the most beautiful names: whatever is in the skies and on earth declares his praises and glory: and he is the exalted in might the wise”15.

      We may find our lost direction if we are aware of establishing a contact with God and the heartfelt approach of making a yearning, let all the human beings make a supplication that, “praise be to the one who is the cherisher and sustainer of the worlds, most gracious most merciful, and master of the day of judgment. Only you we adore and only your aid we seek. Show us the straight way. The way of those on whom you have bestowed your grace those whose (portion) is not wrath and who go not astray16. “Blessed are you, who made constellations in the skies and placed therein a light and a moon giving light. And it is you who made the night and the day to follow each other for such as they have the will to celebrate your praises or to show their gratitude”17. “You are the light of the heavens and the earth.  The parable of your light is as if there were a niche and within it a light: the light enclosed in glass: the glass as it were a brilliant star: lit from a blessed tree, an olive neither of the east nor of the west whose oil is well-nigh luminous though fire scarce touched it: light upon light! You guide whom you will, to your light”18. "O lord of power and rule you give power to whom you please and you strip off power from whom you please. You provide with honor whom you please and you bring low whom you please. In your hand is all good.  Verily over all things you have power. You cause the night to gain on the day and you cause the day to gain on the night. You bring the living out of the dead and you bring the dead out of the living; and you give sustenance to whom you please without measure”19.On no soul you place a burden greater than it can bear.  It gets every good that it earns and it suffers every ill that it earns. "Our Lord! Don’t condemn us if we forget or fall into error; our Lord! Don’t lay on us a burden like that which you did lay on those before us; Our Lord! Don’t lay on us a burden greater than we have strength to bear.  Blot out our sins and grant us forgiveness.  Have mercy on us.  You are our Protector; help us against those who stand against faith”20.

     What has been happening to the women in the past is nothing but absurdity. “Whenever news of the birth of a female child used to be brought to one of the fathers, his face would darken and he would be filled with inward grief. With shame he used to hide himself from people because of the bad news he has had! Shall he retain it on sufferance and contempt or bury it in the dust? Ah! What an evil choice they would decide on”21. Surely your place is not what a man of today decides for you or what an ignorant father of dark ages used to do. O, woman come back, find and insist on your right place in society, a place of respect dignity and security. O, woman you should be respected for your mind, your heart, your soul and your dignity. You are the nucleus of the society around which everything orbits, a scarlet thread of the social fabric. You are not for looking good to men, therefore, don’t be a slave to a man’s desires. Think and rethink you will see the light at the end of the tunnel.

           You can still come back, as someone assures you, “when people ask concerning me I am indeed close to them, I listen to the yearning of every suppliant when he calls me”22. “O human being! What has seduced you from your lord most beneficent? He who created you, fashioned you in due proportion and gave you a just bias; in whatever form he wills does he put you together”23. Remember a day is ordained to appear when the evildoer will say "It was God who gave you a promise of truth: I too promised but I failed in my promise to you.  I had no authority over you except to call you but you listened to me: then reproach not me but reproach your own souls.  I cannot listen to your cries nor can you listen to mine”24 


Are Muslim women oppressed?


Are Muslim women oppressed?

Among the many topics of interest to non-Muslims, the status of Muslim women and the theme of their rights -- or rather, the perceived lack of them – seems to be foremost. The media’s portrayal of Muslim women, usually outlining their “oppression and mystery” seems to contribute to this negative perception.

The main reason for this is that people often fail to distinguish between culture and religion -- two things that are completely different. In fact, Islam condemns oppression of any kind whether it is towards a woman or humankind in general.

The Quran is the sacred book by which Muslims live. This book was revealed 1400 years ago to a man named Muhammad –peace be upon him-, who would later become the Prophet –peace be upon him-. Fourteen centuries have passed and this book has not been changed since, not one letter has been altered.

In chapter 33, entitled Soorah Al-Ahzaab (The Clans), verse 59 Allaah The Exalted Almighty Says (what means): {O Prophet, tell your wives and your daughters and the woman of the believers to bring down over themselves (part) of their outer garments. That is more suitable that they will be known (as free respectable women) and not be abused. And ever is Allaah Forgiving and Merciful}. [Quran 33:59] This verse shows that Islam makes wearing a Hijaab necessary. Hijaab is the word used for covering, not only the headscarves (as some people may think) but also wearing loose clothes that are not too bright.

Sometimes, people see covered Muslim women and they think of this as oppression. This is wrong. A Muslim woman is not oppressed, in fact, she is liberated. This is because she is no longer valued for something material, such as her good looks or the shape of her body. She compels others to judge her for her intelligence, kindness, honesty and personality. Therefore, people judge her for who she actually is.

When Muslim women cover their hair and wear loose clothes, they are obeying the orders of their Lord to be modest, not cultural or social mores. In fact, Christian nuns cover their hair out of modesty, yet no one considers them “oppressed”. By following the command of Allaah, Muslim women are doing the exact same thing.

The lives of the people who responded to the Quran have changed drastically. It had a tremendous impact on so many people, especially women, since this was the first time that the souls of man and women were declared equal -- with the same obligations as well as the same rewards.

For the first time in history, women were granted economic independence in Islam. The money they bring in to marriage is theirs as well as the money they earn. In Islam, women are allowed to choose their own husbands and in extreme cases, ask for divorce. A woman has the right to be educated, contrary to what the contemporary world might think. The responsibility is that of the person who is raising her.

Islam is a religion that holds women in high regard. Long ago, when baby boys were born, they brought great joy to the family. The birth of a girl was greeted with considerably less joy and enthusiasm. Sometimes, girls were hated so much that they were buried alive. Islam has always been against this irrational discrimination against girls and female infanticide.

The Prophet Muhammad, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam, said: «Seeking knowledge is mandatory for every Muslim (male and female)» [Narrated By Ibn-Majah & was classified as Sahheeh By Al-Albani but other scholars have classified it as weak]. Men and women both have the capacity for learning and understanding. Since it is also their obligation to promote good behavior and condemn bad behavior in all spheres of life, Muslim women must acquire the appropriate education to perform this duty in accordance with their own natural talents and interests.

While maintenance of their homes, providing support to the husband and bearing, raising and teaching children are among the first and very highly regarded roles for a woman, if she has the skills to work outside the home for the good of the community, she may do so. However, this is allowed only as long as her family obligations are met and as long as she complies with the Islamic code of dress and conduct, with no intermingling with men in the workplace.

Islam recognizes and fosters the natural differences between men and women despite their equality. Some types of work are more suitable for men and other types for women. This differentiation in no way diminishes the effort or benefit of one gender over the other. God will reward both genders equally for the value of their work, though it may not necessarily be within the same sphere of activity.

The two great roles a woman plays in life are that of a wife and a mother. The Prophet –peace be upon him-, once said to a group of Companions:

Concerning motherhood, the Prophet Muhammad, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam, said: «Heaven lies under the feet of mothers» [Classified as Weak By Al-Albani in Daeef al Jamea']. This implies that the success of a society can be traced to the mothers who raised it. The first and greatest influence on a person comes from the sense of security, affection and training received from the mother. Therefore, a woman having children must be educated and conscientious in order to be a skillful parent.

«A man came to the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam, and asked: "Who among my kinfolk is worthy of my good companionship?" The Prophet –peace be upon him-, replied: "Your mother" three times before saying: "Your father» [Bukhari]. This indicates the impact that a mother has in a person's life. So women are highly honored in this great religion.

Islam is a religion that treats women fairly. The Muslim woman was given a role, duties and rights 1400 years ago that most women do not enjoy even today in the West. These rights are from God and are designed to maintain a balance in society; what may seem “unjust” or “missing” in one place is compensated for or explained in another place.

From: Al-Jumu’ah Vol. 14

«The best among you are those who are the best to their wives» [Narrated By Ibn-Majah & Classified as Sheeh By Al-Albani in Saheeh Ibn-Majah]. This shows that Islam highly encourages treating the wives well. They should be shown love, respect and care. To foster the love and security that comes with marriage, Muslim wives have various rights. The first of the wife's rights is to receive dowry, a gift from the husband, which is part of the marriage contract and required for the legality of the marriage.

The second right of a wife is maintenance. Despite any wealth she may have, her husband is obligated to provide her with food, shelter and clothing. He is not forced, however, to spend beyond his capability and his wife is not entitled to make unreasonable demands.

Display of Beauty


Tabarruj (Display of Beauty)

Saleh as-Saleh

Transcribed by Aboo Uthmaan [1]

1. Tabarruj is disobedience to Allaah and His Messenger (sall-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam)

The one who disobeys Allaah and His Messenger (sall-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) can only harm himself and can not in any way harm Allaah: The Messenger (sall-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: «All of my followers will enter Paradise except those who refuse.” It was asked: “O Messenger of Allaah, who would refuse?” He (sall-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: “He who obeys me enters Paradise and he who disobeys me has refused» [Reported by al-Bukhaaree].

It is reported that Mu’awiyyah (radee Allaahu ‘anhu) gave a sermon in Greater Syria and in it he mentioned that the Prophet (sall-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) prohibited seven things and he named tabarruj as one of them.

‘Abdullaah ibn Mas’ood (radee Allaahu ‘anhu) reported that the Prophet (sall-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) used to dislike ten kinds of behavior and he (‘Abdullaah ibn Mas’ood) mentioned that from amongst them is displaying and beautification which is done in an improper place.

Jalaal-ud-Deen as-Suyuti (d.911H) (rahimahullaah) said that: “Tabarruj by displaying beautification is showing off to strangers and this is disliked.” This is the explanation of the meaning of ‘Abdullaah ibn Mas’ood’s statement “improper place”, it is not the case if the beautification is done for the husband.

2. Tabarruj is a grave destructive sin

Umayymah, the daughter of Ruqayyah visited the Prophet (sall-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) to acknowledge the message of Islam and to acknowledge that he (sall-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) was and is the Messenger of Allaah. The Prophet (sall-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said to her: «I give my acknowledgment that you must not set partners to worship besides Allaah, that you do not steal, commit fornication or adultery, that you do not kill your child, that you do not commit any falsehood before your hands and between your legs, that you do not wail and that you do not make tabarruj like that of jahiliyyah (pre-Islamic era)». [Reported by Ahmad ibn Hanbal in his Musnad, Shaykh Ahmad Shakir graded the chain of the hadeeth as “good” and stated that Imaam ibn Kathir mentioned this hadeeth in his tafsir saying that the chain of this narration is “good”].

It’s clear that the Prophet (sall-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) associated tabarruj (display of beauty) with grave destructive sins.

3. Tabarruj brings the curse and expulsion from the Mercy of Allaah

The Messenger (sall-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: «There shall be (in the later) part of my nation women who are dressed but are in fact naked. On their heads are humps like those of camels. Curse them for they are surely cursed» [Reported by at-Tabaaranee, Shaykh al-Albaanee graded this hadeeth “Saheeh”].

4. Tabarruj is an attribute of the people of hell

The Messenger (sall-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: «Of the people of Hell there are two types whom I have never seen: The one possessing whips like the tail of an ox and they flog people with them. The second one the women who would be naked in spite of their being dressed, who are seduced to wrong paths and seduce others with their hair high like humps. These women would not get into Paradise and they would not perceive its odour, although its fragrance can be perceived from such and such distance» [Reported by Muslim].

5. Tabarruj is darkness on the Day of Resurrection

It is narrated that the Prophet (sall-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: «The parable of a woman who moves with a slow sweeping motion trailing her beautified clothes performing not for her husband is like darkness of the Day of Judgement, she has or comes with no light» [Reported by at-Tirmidhee in his Sunan, Shaykh al-Albaanee graded the hadeeth “weak”].

Abu Bakr ibn al-Arabi (d.543H) (rahimahullaah) said that although this hadeeth is weak: “…its meaning is correct because the enjoyment in disobedience is in fact torture and suffering. The meaning is that this type of woman will come on the Day of Resurrection black in darkness as if she physically originated from darkness. In contrast, what happens to be difficult and painful in performance of obedient acts is a true enjoyment because of the reward awaiting those who are obedient to Allaah and His Messenger (sall-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam).”

The odor of the mouth of a fasting person may not be a pleasant in this world, to Allaah however it is better than the odor of musk because the Muslim has obeyed Allaah and performed what is due upon him from fasting. Similarly the woman wearing her Hijab may be looked upon as “reactionist”, “old fashioned” or “a walking tent”, she however is the winner on the Day of Resurrection and those who mock her put themselves on a dangerous road and may be subjected to the wrath of Allaah (subhaanahu wa ta’aala).

6. Tabarruj is hypocrisy

The Prophet (sall-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: «The best of your women is the affectionate, the fertile (in productivity), the propitious (favorable), the consultative if they fear Allaah. The most evil of your women are the Mutabar’rijat (those who do at-Tabarruj [display their beauty]), the Mutakhayelat (who strut/swagger), and they are the hypocrites. Those who enter Al-Jannah (the Paradise) are like the Cough Crow» [Reported by al-Bayhaqi in his Sunan].

The cough crow has a red beak and red legs and is rare, so the expression in the hadeeth “cough cow” indicates that the women who will enter Paradise will be few.

7. Tabarruj is disgraceful

The Prophet (sall-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: «Any woman who takes of her clothes in other than her husband’s home has broken the shield between her and Allaah» [Reported by Ahmad ibn Hanbal & al-Haakim who said it is “Saheeh” according to the conditions of al-Bukhaaree and Muslim and adh-Dhahabee agreed].

Imaam Abu Zakariya an-Nawawee (d.676H) (rahimahullaah) commenting on this hadeeth said: “The saying of the Prophet (sall-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam): ‘Any woman who takes of her clothes in other than her husband’s home’, means showing off her beauty to strangers by taking off her shield of clothes, she has broken the shield between her and Allaah (subhaanahu wa ta’aala).”

Allaah (subhaanahu wa ta’aala) stated: {O Children of Adam! We have bestowed raiment upon you to cover yourselves (screen your private parts, etc.) and as an adornment and the raiment of righteousness, that is better…} [Al-A’raf 7:26].

So if a woman does not fear Allaah and uncovers her private parts then she is breaking the shield between her and Allaah, Most High, and because she uncovered and dishonored herself and committed a grievance against her husband then Allaah will uncover her shield, she will be in a scandal.

8. Tabarruj is an unchaste and disgraceful sin

The women is ‘awrah, a source of attraction, her body is not to be shown, to wear clothes that show off her body and its shape and features is disgraceful. Allaah (subhaanahu wa ta’aala) orders us to stay away from disgraceful sins: {And when they commit a Faahisha (evil deed, going round the Ka’bah in naked state, every kind of unlawful sexual intercourse, etc.), they say: ‘We found our fathers doing it, and Allaah has commanded us of it.’ Say: ‘Nay, Allaah never commands of Faahisha. Do you say of Allaah what you know not?} [Al-A’raf 7:28].

Rather, it is Shaytaan who orders such Faahisha, such disgraceful sins. Allaah (subhaanahu wa ta’aala) says: {Shaytaan (Satan) threatens you with poverty and orders you to commit Fahshaa (evil deeds, illegal sexual intercourse, sins etc.); whereas Allaah promises you Forgiveness from Himself and Bounty, and Allaah is All-Sufficient for His creatures’ needs, All-Knower} [Al-Baqarah 2:268].

The Mutabar’rijat (those who do at-Tabarruj [display their beauty]) create a sinful virus that spreads disgraceful sins amongst the Muslim society. Allaah (subhaanahu wa ta’aala) says:

{Verily, those who like that (the crime of) illegal sexual intercourse should be propagated among those who believe, they will have a painful torment in this world and in the Hereafter. And Allaah knows and you know not} [An-Nur 24:19

Tabarruj is the leading course for the spread of zina (illegal sexual relations).

9. Tabarruj is a Satanic way

The story of Adam and his wife demonstrates how the enemy of Allaah (i.e. Satan) was so keen to incite them to show their private parts in order to spread evil and disgraceful sins. It also shows that tabarruj of women is a primary goal for Shaytaan to achieve. Allaah (subhaanahu wa ta’aala) says: {O Children of Adam! We have bestowed raiment upon you to cover yourselves (screen your private parts, etc.) and as an adornment, and the raiment of righteousness, that is better} [Al-A’raf 7:26].

It is very clear that Satan is the one who established the call for Tabarruj and showing off and he is the leader of those leaders who call for the liberation of women. Shaytaan in the Imaam of everyone who obeys him and follows him in disobedience to Allaah, Most Merciful, especially those Mutabar’rijat (those who do at-Tabarruj [display their beauty]) who harm the Muslims and deceive their youth. The Prophet (sall-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: «I have not left after me any chance of turmoil more harmful to men than the harm done to them because of women» [Reported by al-Bukhaaree].

Adam (‘alayhis-sallam) forgot, made a mistake, repented and asked for forgiveness from Allaah and Allaah accepted his repentance. The struggle between Adam’s offspring and Shaytaan continues, the Devil still whispers to drive us (men and women) to disobey Allaah and follow sins and there is no safeguard except in returning to Allaah in good faith and repentance, remembering Allaah and asking Him for His help to overcome lusts and desires.

10. Tabarruj is the way of the Jews

The Jews have an important role in the destruction of nations through fitnah, the seduction and temptation of women. The spread of tabarruj is an effective weapon of their wide spread establishments. One just has to look around to see Hollywood and famous houses of fashion, advertising, x-rated movies and clothes are all wide spread. In fact, the Prophet (sall-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: «Watch out for this worldly life (safeguard yourself from its temptation) guard yourself from the allurement of women. Verily, the first trial for the people of Israel was caused by women» [Reported by Muslim].

Their (the Jews) books also testify to this fact. In the third chapter of Isaiah it is quoted that: “Moreover, the LORD said: ‘Because the daughters of Zion are proud and walk with heads held high and seductive eyes, and go along with mincing steps, and tinkle the bangles on their feet. Therefore the Lord will afflict the scalp of the daughters of Zion with scabs, and the LORD will make their foreheads bare’.” (Isaiah, Chapter 3, V.16-17)


“In that day the Lord will take away the beauty of their anklets, headbands, crescent ornaments, dangling earrings, bracelets, veils, headdresses, ankle chains, sashes, perfume boxes, amulets, finger rings, nose rings, festal robes, outer tunics, cloaks, money purses, hand mirrors, undergarments, turbans and veils.” (Isaiah, Chapter 3, V.18-23)

Although the Prophet (sall-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) warned against mimicking the non-believers and their ways, many Muslims don’t abide by this warning. This is a testimony for the Prophet (sall-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) who said: «You will tread the same path as was trodden by those before you, inch by inch and step by step, so that if they enter the hole of the lizard you will follow them into it also.” His companions asked him: “Do you mean the Jews and the Christians.” He (sall-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) replied: “Who else?!» [Reported by Muslim].

The similarity of those women who disobey Allaah and His Messenger (sall-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) to the Jews is very evident because their response to Allaah’s command was and is similar to that of the Jews: {We have heard and disobeyed} [Al-Baqarah 2:93].

This is unlike the response of the believing woman who would respond (to the commands of Allaah) saying: {We hear and we obey} [Al-Baqarah 2:85].

They remember the saying of Allaah (subhaanahu wa ta’aala): {And whoever contradicts and opposes the Messenger (Muhammad) after the right path has been shown clearly to him and follows other than the believers’ way. We shall keep him in the path he has chosen, and burn him in Hell - what an evil destination} (An-Nisa 4:115)

11. Tabarruj is a filthy Jahiliyyah (ignorance)

Allaah (subhaanahu wa ta’aala) says: {And stay in your houses, and do not display yourselves like that of the times of ignorance} [Al-Ahzab 33:33].

The Prophet (sall-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) described the times of ignorance as filthy and wicked and ordered us to reject them. Allaah (subhaanahu wa ta’aala) described the Prophet (sall-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) in that: {…he allows them as lawful at-Taiyibaat [(i.e. all good and lawful) as regards things, deeds, beliefs, persons, foods, etc.], and prohibits them as unlawful al-Khabaa’ith (i.e. all evil and unlawful as regards things, deeds, beliefs, persons, foods, etc.)} [Al-A’raf 7:157].

The call to bring about the times of jahiliyyah is similar to the call for tabarruj, both of which are wicked ways which the Messenger (sall-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) made unlawful. The Prophet (sall-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: «Verily, ever matter of jahiliyyah is under my hate» [Reported by Aboo Daawood, at-Tirmidhee, Ahmad and other].

Tabarruj and all forms of jahiliyyah such as false pride and haughtiness, ill thoughts about Allaah, call for falsehood, setting up rivals with Allaah, ruling by the laws of other than Islam, usury, etc., are all inclusive.

12. Tabarruj is an animal act

To reveal and expose of our natural behaviour to that of animals, whenever man inclines to such behaviour he starts his decline to a level lower than the level of manhood that Allaah has bestowed upon him. Allaah bestowed a natural inclination towards covering, preservation and safeguarding modesty, to consider the acts of display, exposition and uncovering as an act of beauty represents a corruption of the Fitrah (natural disposition / inclination) and is degeneration in state and a sign of decadence and decline.

The progress of mans stability is linked to his or her covering of the body. The Hijab cover is fitting to the instinct of ghareeh which draws its strength from the soul. The “so-called” liberation from the chains of covering is an instinct which draws its instincts from lusts which incites tabarruj and mixing of the sexes. The one who is satisfied with the second instinct must sacrifice the first one in order to silence the voice of the innate ghareeh in his heart in return for the “so-called” enjoyment of tabarruj and mixing. From this we understand that tabarruj is a sign of corruption of Fitrah (natural disposition / inclination), lack of bashfulness and insensitivity.

13. Tabarruj is a door to wide-spread evil

Anyone who carefully examines the Islamic texts, the Qur’aan and the authentic Sunnah and the lessons from history becomes convinced about the evils of tabarruj and its harms, both in religious and worldly matters, especially when it is associated with the mixing of sexes. Some of its underlying consequences are:

a) The competition amongst the displaying women in showing of their beauty, this is seduction, and it leads to the spoiling of morality and leaves women as merchandised articles for anyone to look at.

b) The corruption of the morality of men, especially the youth and those in adolescence, it pushes them to commit various kinds of sin. We have seen teenage kids on the corners of many streets in Europe, North America and other parts of the world roaming around smoking, at times half naked, on drugs and looking to engage in sexual relationships. Why, what happened? Many try to hide from the hard facts. The drive for lust and the materialistic life became the objective of the new generation, the Pepsi, Michael MTV Jackson generation. The result, AIDS and other sexually transmitted diseases!

c) The destruction of family ties and the causing of a lack of trust between family members and the threat of divorce.

d) The commercial abuse of women in the world of advertising, entertainment and other areas.

e) Doing harm to women by declaring their ill intentions and evil conscience thus rendering her venerable to harm by the wicked.

f) The spread of diseases. The Prophet (sall-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: «Sin did not spread in any particular nation until they openly conducted (their sins) and as a result plague and other illnesses that were not present amongst their predecessors because present amongst them»

g) The facilitation of the sin of zina and fornication of the eye. The Prophet (sall-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: «The adultery of the eye is the lustful look» [Reported by Muslim].

h) Tabarruj makes it difficult to lower the gaze.

i) It justifiably brings down the Punishment of Allaah and His Punishment is more severe then an atomic bomb. Allaah says: {And when We decide to destroy a town (population), We (first) send a definite order (to obey Allaah and be righteous) to those among them [or We (first) increase in number those of its population] who are given the good things of this life. Then, they transgress therein, and thus the word (of torment) is justified against it them). Then We destroy it with complete destruction} [Al-Isra 17:16].

The Prophet (sall-Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: «When people see wrong or evil and they don’t change it then it is eminent that the Punishment of Allaah will fall upon them» [Reported by Aboo Daawood and others].


[1] I (Aboo Uthmaan) transcribed (albeit not a verbatim transcription) this text from a lecture entitled “Tabarruj” by Dr. Saleh as-Saleh

Women in Islam: Oppression or Liberation?


For centuries, Muslim women in all corners of the world have been aware of the liberation that is achieved by adhering to the concept of hijab. Current world events have once again brought the issue of women’s liberation in Islam to the forefront of people’s minds.

Can a Woman Who Adheres to Hijab Be Liberated?

Can a religion that considers morality to be a part of faith clearly define the equality of men and women and their rights and responsibilities? The answer is a resounding “yes.” In a day and age when the basic tenets of Islam are being questioned by Muslim and non-Muslim alike, we must be cautious when evaluating Islam.

The general picture that is painted by the media is biased and unsubstantiated. The impression that some Muslims give to the world is often not a true reflection of the religion, one that is the completion of all religions. Islam, the religion for all people in all places and times, which takes the equality of men and women very seriously. It sees the liberation of women as essential and considers modesty, good character, and manners to be the way to achieve such liberation.

Too often, the image of a covered woman is used to represent what much of the world views as oppression. Her very existence is described in terms that convey ignorance and unhappiness. Words like “beaten,” “repressed” and “oppressed” are bandied about by the Western media in a desperate attempt to convince the readers that women in Islam have no rights. Descriptive and intrinsically oppressive terms such as “shrouded” and “shackled” are used to portray an image of women who have no minds and who are the slaves or possessions of their husbands and fathers. In the 19th century, T. E. Lawrence described women in Arabia as “death taking a walk,” and from that time forward, the true status of women in Islam has been shrouded by misunderstanding. The truth about women and Islam is far from this melodramatic portrayal.

Over 1,400 years ago, Islam raised the status of women from a position of oppression to one of liberation and equality. In an era when women were considered possessions, Islam restored women to a position of dignity.

In order to gain a true insight into the real and lasting liberation that Islam guarantees women, we must first examine the concept of liberation as viewed by the West. In Western countries where liberation encompasses unlimited freedom, many women are actually finding themselves living lives that are unsatisfying and meaningless. In their quest for liberation, they have abandoned the ideals of morality and stability and found themselves in marriages and families that bear little resemblance to real life.

What is liberating about working all day and coming home at night to the housework? What is liberating about having babies who, at six weeks old can be deposited in childcare centers to learn their behavior and morality from strangers? Girls as young as 6 years old have been diagnosed with eating disorders, teenage pregnancy is rampant, and women who choose to stay at home to raise their families are viewed as old fashioned or unemployable.

Women in the West are liberated: liberated to the point that they are no longer free to choose the life that is natural for them. They are free only to choose from the selection of consumer goods offered to them by their masters. The so-called liberated women of the West have become slaves. Slaves to the economic system, slaves to the fashion and beauty industries, and slaves to a society that views them as brainless machines, taught to look desirable, earn money, and shop. Even the career woman who has managed to push her way through the glass ceiling is a slave to the consumer society, which requires her to reside in a spacious house, wear only the latest designer clothes, drive a luxurious car, and educate her children at the most exclusive and expensive schools.

Is This Liberation?

The natural inclination of women is to please, comfort, and support their men: their husbands, fathers, brothers, or sons. The natural inclination of men is to protect, support, and provide for the women lawfully in their lives: wives, mothers, sisters, and daughters. Islam, the only true religion and infallible guide to life, requires that we follow such natural inclinations. It allows us to abandon ideas that are intrinsically foreign to human nature and supports us in developing and sustaining natural family relationships that spread out to form part of the wider Muslim community.

A Muslim woman knows her place in society and knows her place in the family infrastructure. Her religion is her first priority; therefore, her role is clear-cut and defined. A Muslim woman, far from being oppressed, is a woman who is liberated in the true sense of the word. She is a slave to no man or to any economic system; rather, she is the slave of God. Islam clearly defines women’s rights and responsibilities spiritually, socially, and economically. Islam’s clear-cut guidelines are empowering; they raise women to a natural and revered position.

Women in Islam have no need to protest and demonstrate for equal rights. They have no need to live their lives aimlessly acquiring possessions and money. With the perfection of Islam as the natural and only true religion came the undeniable fact that women and men are equal, partners and protectors of one another.

{So their Lord accepted from them; Never will I allow to be lost the work of any of you, be they male or female. You are of one another; so those who emigrated or were driven out from their homes, who suffered harm in My cause, and fought and were killed, I will verily expiate from them their evil deeds and admit them into gardens under which rivers flow: a reward from God; and with God is the best rewards.} [Quran 3:195]

{And whoever does righteous good deeds, male or female, and is a true believer in the Oneness of Allah, such will enter paradise; and not the least injustice, even to the size of a speck on the back of a date stone, will be done to them.} [Quran 4:124]

Women in Islam have the right to own property, to control their own money or money that they earn, to buy and sell, and to give gifts and charity. They have formal rights of inheritance. They have the right to an education; seeking and acquiring knowledge is an obligation on all Muslims, male or female. Married Muslim women are completely free from the obligation of supporting and maintaining the family, yet may work if they wish too.

They are in no way forced into marriage, but have the right to accept or refuse a proposal as they see fit. Women in Islam have the right to seek divorce if it becomes necessary, as they also have the right to save their marriages.

Islam teaches that the family is the core of society. In Western cultures, the fabric of society is being torn apart by the breakdown of the family unit. It is in these crumbling communities that the call for the liberation of women arises. It seems to be a misguided and feeble attempt to find a path of security and safety. Such security is available only when the human being turns back to God and accepts the role for which he or she was created.

Liberation means freedom, but not the freedom to do as one pleases. Freedom must never be at the expense of oneself or of the wider community. When a woman fulfills the role for which she was created, not only is she liberated but she is empowered.

The modestly dressed or covered woman you see in the street is liberated. She is liberated from the shackles that have tied the feet of her Western counterparts. She is liberated from the economic slavery of the West, and she is liberated from the necessity of managing a house and family without the support of her husband or the help of a wider community. She lives her life based on divine guidelines; her life is filled with peace, happiness, and strength. She is not afraid of the world, but rather embraces its tests and trials with patience and fortitude, secure in the fact that true liberation is only achieved by full and willing submission to the natural order of the universe.

Oppression is not defined by a piece of material, but rather by a sickening of the heart and a weakening of the mind. Oppression grows in a society that is crumbling because its members have lost sight of the true purpose of their existence. Liberation arises and takes root in a society that is just, cohesive, and based on natural order and divine guidelines. Islam is such a society, and this is what makes a Muslim woman is liberated.

Types of Istihaadah


Q: If a woman bleeds so much that it is istihaadah (non-menstrual vaginal bleeding), how should she pray?.

A: Praise be to Allaah.

Istihaadah means three things:

1 – The woman had a regular period before she experienced istihaadah. In this case she should refer to the regular period that she used to have, and during that time she should stop praying and she is subject to the rulings on menses, and anything other than that is istihaadah, and she is subject to the rulings on istihaadah at that time.

For example: A woman used to get her period for 6 days at the beginning of each month, then she began to experience istihaadah and she bleeds all the time. So her period is the first six days of every month, and everything else is istihaadah, because of the hadeeth of ‘Aa’ishah (may Allaah be pleased with her) according to which Faatimah bint Abi Hubaysh said: «O Messenger of Allaah, I am experiencing istihaadah and I never become pure; should I stop praying? He said: “No, that is a vein. But stop praying for the number of days that you used to menstruate, then do ghusl and pray.»[ Narrated by al-Bukhaari]. In Saheeh Muslim it says that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said to Umm Habeebah: «Stop praying for the number of days that your menses used to last, then do ghusl and pray.»Based on this, the woman who is experiencing istihaadah should stop praying for the number of days that her period used to last, then she should do ghusl and pray, and not worry about the bleeding at that time.

2 – If she did not have a regular period before the istihaadah, rather she has been experiencing istihaadah since the first time she got her menses, then she should distinguish between different types of blood. Her menses is when the blood is dark or thick or has a distinctive odour, and she is subject to the rulings on menses at that time. Anything other than that is istihaadah and she comes under the rulings on istihaadah.

For example: A woman sees blood when she first starts to , and it is continuous, but for ten days it is dark and the rest of the time it is red. Or she sees that it is thick for ten days and thin for the rest of the time. Or she notices that for ten days it has the odour of menstrual blood and for the rest of the time it has no odour. So her menses is the dark blood in the first case, the thick blood in the second and the blood that has an odour in the third. Everything apart from that is istihaadah, because the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said to Faatimah bint Abi Hubaysh:«When it is menstrual blood it is dark and recognizable, so when it is like that, then stop praying, and when it is otherwise, do wudoo’ and pray, for that is from a vein.» [Narrated by Abu Dawood and al-Nasaa’i; classed as saheeh by Ibn Hibbaan and al-Haakim]. Although the isnaad and text of this hadeeth are subject to further discussion, the scholars (may Allaah have mercy on them) followed it, and that is better than trying to make her follow the pattern of the majority of women.

3 - If she does not have a regular period and cannot distinguish it properly because the istihaadah is ongoing from the first time she saw the blood, and her blood is all the same or its characteristics are varied but it cannot be menstrual blood. This woman should act on the basis of what is the usual pattern among women, so her menses is six or seven days each month, and she should start from the first time when she saw blood; everything apart from that is istihaadah.

For example: if the first time she saw blood was on the fifth of the month, and it continued with no change to distinguish menstrual bleeding by colour etc, then her period is six or seven days of each month starting from the fifth of the month, because of the hadeeth of Hamnah bint Jahsh (may Allaah be pleased with her) who said:«O Messenger of Allaah, I bleed a great deal all the time. What do you think – should I stop praying and fasting?” He said: “I suggest you use a piece of cotton, for it will absorb the blood.” She said: It is more than that. In this report he said: “That is a kick from the shaytaan, so count your menses as six or seven days, which is something between you and Allaah, then wash yourself and when you see that you have become pure and you are certain of it, then pray for twenty-four or twenty-three days, and fast.»[This hadeeth was narrated by Ahmad and Abu Dawood, and narrated and classed as saheeh by al-Tirmidhi. It was narrated that Ahmad classed it as saheeh and that al-Bukhaari classed it as hasan].

The words of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), «six or even days»does not mean that one has the choice, rather it is for the purpose of ijtihaad, so the woman should look at those whose situation is closest to hers in terms of physical resemblance, age and relationship, etc., and see whose cycle most closely resembles hers. If the closest one has a six-day period then she should regard her menses as six days, and if the closest is seven days then she should regards her menses as seven days. End quote.

Risaalah fi’l-Dima’ al-Tabee’iyyah li’l-Nisa’ by Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen (may Allaah have mercy on him)

At the time when she decides that the blood is menstrual blood, then she is menstruating, and at the time when she decides that the period has ended, then she is pure and she should pray and fast, and may have intercourse with her husband.

Rulings on istihaadah


Q: What are the rulings to do with istihaadah (non-menstrual vaginal bleeding)?.

A: Praise be to Allaah.

We explained when bleeding is menses (hayd) and when it is isthaadah. When it is menses then it is subject to the rulings on menses, and when it is istihaadah it is subject to the rulings on istihaadah.

The rulings on istihaadah are like the rulings on purity (i.e., when one is not menstruating). There is no difference between a woman who is experiencing istihaadah and a woman who is not menstruating or bleeding, except the following:

1 – She has to do wudoo’ for each prayer, because the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said to Faatimah bint Abi Hubaysh:«Then do wudoo’ for every prayer.» [Narrated by al-Bukhaari in the chapter on washing away blood]. What that means is that she should not do wudoo’ for a prayer that is to be performed at a particular time until the time for it has begun. If it is a prayer for which there is no particular time, she may do wudoo’ for it when she wants to perform the prayer.

2 – When she wants to do wudoo’, she has to wash away the traces of blood, and put a piece of cotton over her private part to hold back the blood, because the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said to Hamnah:«I suggest you use a piece of cotton, for it will absorb the blood.” She said: It is more than that. He said: “Use a cloth.” She said: It is more than that. He said: “Then tie it tightly around yourself.»Then whatever comes out after that will not matter, because the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said to Faatimah bint Abi Hubaysh:«Do not pray during the days of your menses, then wash yourself and do wudoo’ for every prayer, then pray, even if the blood falls onto the mat.»[Narrated by Ahmad and Ibn Maajah].

3 – Intercourse. The scholars differed as to whether it is permissible when one is not concerned about suffering hardship as a result of giving it up. But the correct view is that it is permissible in all cases, because many women, ten or more, experienced istihaadah at the time of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), and neither Allaah nor His Messenger forbade them to have intercourse. Rather the words of Allaah – “keep away from women during menses” [al-Baqarah 2:222] { فَاعْتَزِلُواْ النِّسَاء فِي الْمَحِيضِ} Transliteration:Fā`tazilū An-Nisā' Fī Al-Maĥīđi – indicate that it is not essential to keep away from them at other times. Also, it is permissible for her to pray, and intercourse is a less serious matter. Drawing an analogy between intercourse with a woman experiencing istihaadah and a woman who is menstruating is not correct, because they are not the same, even in the view of those who think that it is haraam, and analogies are not valid if the two things concerned are different. End quote.

Risaalah fi’l-Dima’ al-Tabee’iyyah li’l-Nisa’ by Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen (may Allaah have mercy on him).

Rulings on menstruation


Q: What are the rulings on menses in women?.

A: Praise be to Allaah.

There are many rulings to do with menstruation, more than twenty, of which we will mention those which we think are most essential. They are:

1 – Prayer

It is haraam for a menstruating woman to pay both obligatory and naafil prayers, and they are not valid if she does them. She does not have to do a particular prayer unless she was pure or became pure with enough time to perform a complete rak’ah, in which case she has to do the prayer, whether it is at the beginning of the time for it or at the end. An example of that happening at the beginning of the time for prayer is a woman who got her menses after the sun set but she had enough time to perform a complete rak’ah (but she did not do it), so when she becomes pure she has to make up that Maghrib prayer, because she had enough time to perform a complete rak’ah before she got her menses.

An example of that happening at the end of the time for prayer is a woman whose menses ended before the sun rose and there was enough time left to perform a complete rak’ah. When she becomes pure she has to make up that Fajr prayer, because she had enough time to perform one rak’ah.

But if there is not enough time to perform a rak’ah, such as in the first scenario, if a woman gets her menses a moment after the sun sets or, in the second scenario, she becomes pure a moment before the sun rises, then she does not have to do that prayer, because the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: «Whoever catches up with a rak’ah of prayer has caught up with the prayer»[Agreed upon].

With regard to dhikr, takbeer, saying Subhaan-Allaah, praising Allaah, saying Bismillaah when eating and so on, and reading hadeeth, fiqh and du’aa’s, or saying Ameen to du’aa’s, and listening to Qur’aan, none of these things are forbidden to her. It is proven in al-Saheehayn and elsewhere that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) used to recline in ‘Aa’ishah’s lap (may Allaah be pleased with her) when she was menstruating, and he would recite Qur'aan.

In al-Saheehayn it is also narrated from Umm ‘Atiyyah that she heard the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) say: «Let the girls who have attained puberty, women in seclusion and menstruating women go out – i.e., to the Eid prayer – and witness good and the gathering of the believers. But let the menstruating women avoid the prayer place»

With regard to the menstruating woman reading Qur’aan, if she is looking at it or thinking of it in her heart, without speaking the words out loud, there is nothing wrong with that, such as if the Mus-haf is placed there, and she looks at the verses and reads them in her heart. Al-Nawawi said in Sharh Muslim: it is permissible and there is no difference of scholarly opinion on this point.

But if she is reciting it out loud, the majority of scholars are of the view that this is not allowed.

Al-Bukhaari, Ibn Jareer, al-Tabari and Ibn al-Mundhir said it is permissible, and this was also narrated from Maalik and from al-Shaafa’i in his former view. That was narrated from them in Fath al-Baari. And al-Bukhaari narrated in a mu’allaq report from Ibraheem al-Nakha’i that there is nothing wrong with her reciting a verse.

Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah said in al-Fataawa: There is no report saying that she should not read Qur’aan. The hadeeth “No menstruating woman or person who is junub should recite anything from the Qur’aan” is a weak hadeeth, according to the consensus of the scholars who are well-versed in hadeeth. Women used to menstruate at the time of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) and if reading was haraam for them as prayer is, this would have been something that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) explained to his ummah and the Mothers of the Believers would have known that, and it would have been something that they told to the people. But since no one narrated any prohibition concerning that from the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), it is not permissible to regard it as haraam, since it is known that he did not forbid that, and as he did not forbid that despite the fact that menstruation was widespread at his time, it is known that it is not haraam. End quote.

Since we know that there is a difference of opinion among the scholars concerning this, what should be said is: it is better for a menstruating woman not to recite Qur'aan out loud except when there is need for that, such as if she is a teacher and she needs to teach her students, or in the case of an exam when the student needs to recite in order to be tested, and so on.

2 – Fasting

It is haraam for a menstruating woman to fast, whether it is an obligatory or a naafil fast, and it is not valid if she does it. But she has to make up any obligatory fasts that she misses, because of the hadeeth of ‘Aa’ishah (may Allaah be pleased with her) who said: «That – meaning menses – used to happen to us and we were commanded to make up fasts but we were not commanded to make up prayers»[Agreed upon].

If a woman gets her menses when she is fasting, her fast becomes invalid even if that happens just before Maghrib, and she has to make up that day if it was an obligatory fast.

But if she feels that the period was coming before Maghrib, but no blood came out until after the sun set, then her fast is complete and is not invalidated, according to the correct view, because there is no ruling connected to blood that is still inside the body, and when the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) was asked about a woman who sees in a dream what a man sees (i.e., an erotic dream), does she have to do ghusl? He said: «Yes, if she sees water».So the ruling is connected to seeing water, not feeling body sensations. The same applies to menses: the rulings do not apply until it is seen outside the body, not just the body sensations.

If dawn comes when the woman is menstruating, it is not valid for her to fast that day even if she becomes pure even a moment after dawn.

If she becomes pure just before dawn and fasts, her fast is valid even if she does not do ghusl until after dawn. This is like the one who is junub – if he intends to fast when he is junub and dos not do ghusl until after dawn breaks, his fast is valid, because of the hadeeth of ‘Aa’ishah (may Allaah be pleased with her) who said: The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) used to wake up junub as the result of intercourse, not a wet dream, and he would fast in Ramadaan. Agreed upon.

3 – Tawaaf around the Ka’bah

It is haraam for a menstruating woman to circumambulate the Ka’bah, whether that is obligatory or naafil, and it is not valid if she does it, because the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said to ‘Aa’ishah when she got her menses:«Do everything that the pilgrims do, but do not circumambulate the House until you become pure»

As for the other actions of Hajj, such as saa’ee between al-Safa and al-Marwah, standing at ‘Arafah, staying overnight in Muzdalifah and Mina, stoning the jamaraat and other rituals of Hajj and ‘Umrah, they are not haraam for her. Based on that, if a female does tawaaf when she is pure, then her period begins immediately after she does tawaaf, or during sa’ee, there is nothing wrong with that.

4 – Tawaaf al-wadaa’ (the farewell tawaaf) is waived in her case

If a female completes the rituals of Hajj and ‘Umrah, then she gets her menses before she goes home and that continues until she leaves, she may depart without doing the farewell tawaaf, because of the hadeeth of Ibn ‘Abbaas (may Allaah be pleased with him) who said: (the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him)) told the people that the last thing they should do was (tawaaf) around the House, but he made an exception for women who were menstruating . [Agreed upon].

But the tawaaf that is required for Hajj and ‘Umrah is not waived, and she must do it when she becomes pure.

5 – Staying in the mosque

It is haraam for the menstruating woman to stay in the mosque and even in the Eid prayer-place, because of the hadeeth of Umm ‘Atiyyah (may Allaah be pleased with her), who said that she heard the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) say: «Let the girls who have attained puberty, women in seclusion and menstruating women go out – i.e., to the Eid prayer.” In this hadeeth it says: “But let the menstruating women avoid the prayer place»[Agreed upon].

6 – Intercourse

It is haraam for her husband to have intercourse with her, and it is haraam for her to allow him to do so, because Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): { وَيَسْأَلُونَكَ عَنِ الْمَحِيضِ قُلْ هُوَ أَذًى فَاعْتَزِلُواْ النِّسَاء فِي الْمَحِيضِ وَلاَ تَقْرَبُوهُنَّ حَتَّىَ يَطْهُرْنَ فَإِذَا تَطَهَّرْنَ فَأْتُوهُنَّ مِنْ حَيْثُ أَمَرَكُمُ اللّهُ إِنَّ اللّهَ يُحِبُّ التَّوَّابِينَ وَيُحِبُّ الْمُتَطَهِّرِينَ }

“They ask you concerning menstruation. Say: that is an Adha (a harmful thing for a husband to have a sexual intercourse with his wife while she is having her menses), therefore, keep away from women during menses and go not unto them till they are purified (from menses and have taken a bath)” Transliteration:Wa Yas'alūnaka `Ani Al-Maĥīđi Qul Huwa 'Adháan Fā`tazilū An-Nisā' Fī Al-Maĥīđi Wa Lā Taqrabūhunna Ĥattá Yaţhurna Fa'idhā Taţahharna Fa'tūhunna Min Ĥaythu 'Amarakumu Allāhu [al-Baqarah 2:222].

What is meant by maheed (translated here as menstruation) is the time of menses, and the location of this menses is the private part.

And the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: «Do everything except have intercourse» [Narrated by Muslim].

And the Muslims are unanimously agreed that it is haraam to have intercourse with a menstruating woman in her vagina.

But it is permissible for him to do that which will satisfy his desire without having intercourse, such as kissing, touching and intimacy that is less than intercourse, but it is better not to be intimate with that which is between the navel and the knee except through a barrier, because ‘Aa’ishah (may Allaah be pleased with her) said: The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) used to tell me to wear a waist wrapper, then he would be intimate with me when I was menstruating. [Agreed upon].

7 – Divorce

It is haraam for a husband to divorce a menstruating woman during her menses, because Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): {يَا أَيُّهَا النَّبِيُّ إِذَا طَلَّقْتُمُ النِّسَاء فَطَلِّقُوهُنَّ لِعِدَّتِهِنَّ}

“O Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him)! When you divorce women, divorce them at their ‘Iddah (prescribed periods)” Transliteration:Yā 'Ayyuhā An-Nabīyu 'Idhā Ţallaqtum An-Nisā' Faţalliqūhunna Li`iddatihinna [al-Talaaq 65:1].

and that can only be if they are divorced when they are pregnant or pure without having had intercourse since the menses ended. Because if a woman is divorced when she is menstruating she cannot start her ‘iddah, because the menstrual period during which she was divorced cannot be counted as part of the ‘iddah; and if she is divorced when she is pure but has had intercourse since her period ended, she cannot start her ‘iddah, because it cannot be known whether she became pregnant from this intercourse. So it should be reckoned by her pregnancy, or if she is not pregnant it should be reckoned by her menstrual cycle. If it cannot be ascertained what sort of 'iddah it is, it is haraam for him to divorce her until things become clear.

Divorcing a menstruating woman at the time of her menses is haraam because of the verse quoted above, and because of the report in al-Saheehayn and elsewhere from Ibn ‘Umar who said that he divorced his wife when she was menstruating. ‘Umar told the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) about that, and the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) got angry and said: «Tell him to take her back and keep her until she becomes pure, then menstruates, then becomes pure again. Then if he wishes he may keep her after that, or if he wishes he may divorce her before he touches (has intercourse with) her. That is the prescribed period within which Allaah has enjoined divorce of women«

If a man divorces his wife when she is menstruating, he is sinning and he has to repent to Allaah and take the woman back in order to divorce her in the prescribed manner as enjoined by Allaah and His Messenger. Then he should leave her alone after he takes her back until she becomes pure from the menses during which he divorced her, then menstruates again, then when she becomes pure again, if he wishes he may keep her or if he wishes he may divorce her before having intercourse with her.

There are three cases where an exception is made from the prohibition on divorcing a woman during her menses:

1 – If the divorce occurs before he spent time alone with her or touched her. There is nothing wrong with him divorcing her when she is menstruating, because in that case she does not have to observe any ‘iddah, so this divorce does not go against the words of Allaah, “divorce them at their ‘Iddah (prescribed periods)”.

2 – If the menses occurs during pregnancy.

3 – If the divorce takes place in return for some compensation, in which case there is nothing wrong with divorcing her when she is menstruating.

There is nothing wrong with doing a marriage contract with a woman who is menstruating, because the basic principle is that it is permissible, and there is no evidence to suggest otherwise. But the idea of the husband entering upon her when she is menstruating is subject to further discussion. If he can be trusted not to have intercourse with her, there is nothing wrong with it, otherwise he should not enter upon her until she becomes pure, for fear of his doing something that is forbidden.

8 – Reckoning the ‘iddah of divorce by means of the menstrual cycle

If a man divorces his wife after having had intercourse with her or being alone with her, then she has to observe an ‘iddah of three complete menstrual cycles, if she is a woman who menstruates and she is not pregnant, because Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):{وَالْمُطَلَّقَاتُ يَتَرَبَّصْنَ بِأَنفُسِهِنَّ ثَلاَثَةَ قُرُوَءٍ}

“And divorced women shall wait (as regards their marriage) for three menstrual periods”Transliteration:Wa Al-Muţallaqātu Yatarabbaşna Bi'anfusihinna Thalāthata Qurū'in [al-Baqarah 2:228].

If she is pregnant, her ‘iddah lasts until her pregnancy ends, whether the time is long or short, because Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): {وَأُوْلَاتُ الْأَحْمَالِ أَجَلُهُنَّ أَن يَضَعْنَ حَمْلَهُنَّ}

“And for those who are pregnant (whether they are divorced or their husbands are dead), their ‘Iddah (prescribed period) is until they lay down their burden”Transliteration:Wa 'Ūlātu Al-'Aĥmāli 'Ajaluhunna 'An Yađa`na Ĥamlahunna [al-Talaaq 65:4]

If a woman does not menstruate because she is old or she had had a hysterectomy, or for some other reason and there is no hope that she will menstruate again, then her 'iddah is three months, because Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): { وَاللَّائِي يَئِسْنَ مِنَ الْمَحِيضِ مِن نِّسَائِكُمْ إِنِ ارْتَبْتُمْ فَعِدَّتُهُنَّ ثَلَاثَةُ أَشْهُرٍ وَاللَّائِي لَمْ يَحِضْن}

“And those of your women as have passed the age of monthly courses, for them the ‘Iddah (prescribed period), if you have doubt (about their periods), is three months; and for those who have no courses [(i.e. they are still immature) their ‘Iddah (prescribed period) is three months likewise”Transliteration:Wa Al-Lā'ī Ya'isna Mina Al-Maĥīđi Min Nisā'ikum 'In Artabtum Fa`iddatuhunna Thalāthatu 'Ash/hurin Wa Al-Lā'ī Lam Yaĥiđna [al-Talaaq 65:4]

If a woman normally menstruates but her menses have ceased for a reason such as sickness or breastfeeding, then she should observe the 'iddah no matter how long it lasts, until her menses returns and she can count her 'iddah. If the reason ceases but her periods do not come back, such as if she recovers from sickness or stops breastfeeding and still does not menstruate, then she should observe ‘iddah for a full year from the time the reason ceased. This is the correct view which is based on Islamic principles, because if the reason ceases and her periods do not come back, she is like one whose periods have stopped for no apparent reason, and if her periods stop for no apparent reason then she should observe an ‘iddah of one year – nine months for pregnancy based on the usual length of pregnancy, and three months for the 'iddah.

*But if the divorce takes place after the marriage contract is done and before intimacy or being alone together, then there is no 'iddah at all, whether it is reckoned by the menstrual cycle or otherwise, because Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): {يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا إِذَا نَكَحْتُمُ الْمُؤْمِنَاتِ ثُمَّ طَلَّقْتُمُوهُنَّ مِن قَبْلِ أَن تَمَسُّوهُنَّ}

“O you who believe! When you marry believing women, and then divorce them before you have sexual intercourse with them, no ‘Iddah [divorce prescribed period, see (V.65:4)] have you to count in respect of them”Transliteration: Yā 'Ayyuhā Al-Ladhīna 'Āmanū 'Idhā Nakaĥtumu Al-Mu'umināti Thumma Ţallaqtumūhunna Min Qabli 'An Tamassūhunna Famā Lakum `Alayhinna Min `Iddatin Ta`taddūnahā [al-Ahzaab 33:49]

9 – Establishing the absence of pregnancy

This is required every time there is a need for a ruling that there is no pregnancy. There are many issues connected to this.

10 –Requirement of ghusl

When the menstruating woman’s period ends, she must do ghusl by purifying her entire body, because the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said to Faatimah bint Abu Hubaysh: «When the time of your menses comes, stop praying, then when it ends, do ghusl and pray»[ Narrated by al-Bukhaari].

*The minimum that is required for ghusl is to ensure that water reaches every part of the body, even beneath the hair. But it is better if it is done in the manner mentioned in the hadeeth from the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), when Asma’ bint Shakl asked him how a menstruating woman should do ghusl. He (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said:« One of you should take her water and lotus leaves and purify herself and purify herself well. Then she should pour water over her head and rub it vigorously, so that it reaches the roots of her hair, and pour water over herself. Then she should take a piece of cloth that is scented with musk and purify herself with it.” Asma’ said: “How should she purify herself with it?” He said: ‘Subhaan Allaah, let her purify herself with it.” ‘Aa’ishah said to her: “She should follow the traces of blood» [Narrated by Muslim].

*She does not have to undo the braids in her hair, unless they are tied so tightly that she fears that the water will not reach the roots, because of the hadeeth of Umm Salamah (may Allaah be pleased with her) that is narrated in Saheeh Muslim, where she asked the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) and said: I am a woman with braided hair; should I undo it when doing ghusl following menses or for janaabah? He said: «No, rather it will be sufficient for you to pour three handfuls of water on your head, then pour water over yourself and you will be purified»


If a menstruating woman becomes pure during the time for prayer, she must hasten to do ghusl so that she can offer the prayer on time. If she is travelling and does not have any water, or she has water but she is afraid that she may be harmed by using it, or she is sick and the water will harm her, then she should do tayammum instead of ghusl, until the reason for not doing it ceases, then she should do ghusl.

Some women become pure at the time for prayer, but they delay ghusl until later, saying that they cannot purify themselves fully in this time. But this is no excuse, because they can limit themselves to the minimum that is required in ghusl and do the prayer on time, then when they have more time they can purify themselves more fully. End quote.

These are the most important rulings that have to do with menses in women.

Kind Treatment of Wives


God instructs men to be nice to their wives and to treat them well to the best of their ability:

{…And live with them in kindness…} [Quran 4:19]

{...وَعَاشِرُوهُنَّ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ...} [النساء:١٩]

Transliteration: ... Wa `Āshirūhunna Bil-Ma`rūfi...

The Messenger of God said, «The most perfect of believers in belief is the best of them in character. The best of you are those who are the best to their women.» [1] The Prophet of Mercy tells us that a husband’s treatment of his wife reflects a Muslim’s good character, which in turn is a reflection of the man’s faith. How can a Muslim husband be good to his wife? He should smile, not hurt her emotionally, remove anything that will harm her, treat her gently, and be patient with her.

Being nice includes good communication. A husband should be willing to open up, and be willing to listen to his wife. Many times a husband wants to air his frustrations (like work). He should not forget to ask her about what annoys her (like when children would not do their homework). A husband should not talk about important things with her when he or his wife is angry, tired, or hungry. Communication, compromise, and consideration are the cornerstone of marriage.

Being nice includes encouraging one’s wife. The most meaningful admiration comes from a sincere heart that notices what really matters — what the wife really values. So a husband should ask himself what she feels most insecure about and discover what she values. That is the wife’s sweet spot of praise. The more the husband compliments it, the more the wife will admire it, the more on target this healthy habit will be. Kind words are like, “I like the way you think,” “You look beautiful in those clothes,” and “I love hearing your voice on the phone.”

Human beings are imperfect. The Messenger of God said,«A believing man should not hate a believing woman. If he dislikes something in her character, he should be pleased with some other trait of hers.» [2] A man should not hate his wife because if he dislikes something in her, he will find something he likes about her if he gives it a chance. One way to be aware of what he likes in his wife is for the husband to make a list of a half dozen things he appreciates about her. Marriage experts recommend that one be as specific as possible and focus on character traits — just as the Prophet of Islam recommended, not just what she does for the husband. For example, a husband may appreciate the way she arranges his clean laundry, but the underlying character trait may be that she is thoughtful. The husband should consider admirable traits such as being compassionate, generous, kind, devout, creative, elegant, honest, affectionate, energetic, gentle, optimistic, committed, faithful, confident, cheerful, and so on. A husband should give himself some time to construct this list, and review it in times of conflict when he is most likely to feel averse towards his wife. It will help him be more aware of his wife’s good attributes and far more likely to compliment them.

A companion asked the Prophet of God what is the right of a wife over her husband?’ He said, «That you feed her when you eat and clothe her when you clothe yourself and do not strike her face. Do not malign her and do not keep apart from her, except in the house.» [3]

Conflict in marriage is virtually inevitable and it leads to lot of anger. Although anger is one of the most difficult emotions to manage, the first step toward controlling it can be learning how to forgive those who hurt us. In case of conflict, a husband should not stop talking to his wife and emotionally hurt her, but he may stop sleeping in the same bed if it will improve the situation. Under no circumstance, even when he is angry or somehow feels justified, is a husband allowed to malign her by using hurtful words or cause her any injury.