[By: Majlisul Ulama]
THE DEGRADATION AND RUIN which ensue in the wake of immorality, shamelessness and all such acts and practices of immorality which introduce and lead to the commission of fornication do not affect only individual persons. The moral, spiritual and mundane destruction flowing in the wake of these evils engulf whole tribes and nations. Entire nations are ruined by the destruction of the moral character of its members. Carnal desire and bestial pleasures were the forerunners to many tumultuous upheavals which had afflicted humanity. The evils of immorality and the destructive consequences of illicit sexual indulgence have never been disputed by people of intelligence and decency even if they happen to be kuffaar and mushrikeen. Mankind, since its very inception on earth, has held a unanimous view regarding the ruinous consequences of sexual liberalism. All nations and all religions – even baatil religions – share in this common opinion. A divergent view has emerged only in this belated age of modernity and material progress which bears testimony to the calamity of spiritual retrogression.
It is only in this last of eras – aakhiruz zamaan – that the evil and contemptibility of immorality have left the minds of numerous people. People have become absolutely desensitized in this regard and no longer view sexual libertinism and illicit association between the sexes as evil. Whole nations reeling under the impact of the onslaught of Western libertinism have banished all shame and decency from their minds and hearts. The libertine culture of the West with its total advocacy of sexual mingling and illicit sexual relationships has ripped the veil of hayaa (shame and modesty), honour and purity from most nations. Undoubtedly, the promiscuous and carnal culture of the modern West has taken a disastrous grip on the minds of the majority of those who had the misfortune of being its cultural and educational slaves and students.
The modern culture of the West in relation to morality, spirituality and purity of character is indeed an aberration. There never existed a people or a culture given up so extensively and intensively to such a wide range of immoral acts of perversion. The history of mankind has had its share of evil communities, but the present culture of Western modernity excels in immorality. There has never been a people so perverse, so licentious, so immoral as Western man. Sexual libertinism and acts of sexual immorality have been accorded respectability and are considered virtues of the material cult of the West. The whole outlook of Western man is permeated with this attitude of licentious immorality. Evil and immorality existed in piecemeal among nations and communities of bygone times, but they are found conglomerate and intensified in Western civilization. Alas! Muslims too have fallen by the wayside and have allowed themselves to be scooped up and cast into the cauldron of Western libertinism. May Allah Ta’ala come to our rescue.
The lifestyles of Westernism which we have accepted as our way of life, have been designed to introduce immorality at every step of life. Shame and honour are not ingredients in a Western way of life. Shame has been utterly annihilated by Western civilization, by its obsession with illicit sex and emphasis on self-exhibition. Muslims too are increasingly banishing their Hayaa which Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said is an integral part of Imaan. Exposure and exhibition of the female body are the greatest acts of “art” offered by western civilization. All spheres of Western life are dominated by such exhibitionism. Indeed, the sexual exhibitionism offered by Western culture in degree of degradation is worse than the displays of the times of “jaahiliyyah” mentioned in the Qur’an Shareef in regard to the displays of lewd women of former times. In former times of ignorance, female exhibitionism was considered evil and disgraceful, but in the modern culture of the West such public displays of female bodies as are in vogue in our day are regarded as virtues and acts of artistic development. The sad fact is that Muslims too consider such revolting displays of immorality as progress and worthy of emulation.
Islam imposes as host of restrictions and prohibitions on mankind in order to keep human beings within the confines of humanity by upholding their morality and spiritual values. All acts, practices and attitudes which lead towards fornication and perversion are banned in Islam. The attitude of Islam in this regard is to prevent man from plunging into the abyss of immorality which destroys his moral fibre and reduces him to levels below that of even beasts. All things which direct man towards the boundaries of immorality are prohibited in Islam. The sum total of the Islamic measures ordained by Allah Ta’ala for man’s moral and spiritual preservation and progress is called Hijaab or Purdah.
Westernism has diligently pursued the task of destroying the mantle of Hijaab which Allah Ta’ala has ordained for the protection of the moral fibre of mankind. The pernicious motive underlining the destruction of Hijaab (Purdah) is to drive women into the amphitheatres of the inordinate lustful desire of the bestial nafs. The onslaught against Islamic Hijaab was initiated by the Western kuffaar, but today, the vile task of pillaging and plundering modesty and shame has been inherited by modernist Muslims who have lost themselves in the drunken stupor of the libertine ways of Westernism. Since the purpose of Hijaab is to guard the spiritual and moral purity of mankind, Islam has closed all avenues which lead to fornication and moral corruption. Without any doubt, discarding Hijaab leads to immorality. Among the initial steps towards fornication is to discard Hijaab. The Shariah prohibits not only the ultimate evil of fornication, but all ways and means leading to this abomination are forbidden by the Qur’aan Shareef. Hence, Allah Ta’ala declares: “Do not approach near to fornication”
All ways practices and institutions which engender zina (fornication) are prohibited in this Aayat. This Aayat is an eloquent expression of the prohibition of the ways and acts which are introductory to fornication. Thus fornication as well as all approaches to fornication are haraam. Among the approaches to fornication the greatest trap of shaitaan is the intermingling of sexes or the abandonment of Hijaab. Unrestricted intermingling of the sexes was never an acceptable conduct among the nations of the world right from the inception of mankind, from Aadam (alayhis salaam) to Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam). Women of respectable families among all nations of former times kept apart from male gatherings. Free mixing of the sexes was the way of ill-bred and immoral people.
The Qur’aan Shareef makes mention of “the exhibitions of the former times of ignorance”. Muslim women are warned by the Qur’an Shareef not to make such evil displays of themselves. The exhibitions of ignorance mentioned in the Qur’aan refers to the lewd and immoral ways of evil women of former times. Such evil displays by women of former times were not the practices of respectable women among the decent Arab families even during the days of jaahiliyyah. The shameless displays of Jaahiliyyah referred to in the Qur’aan were the devices of slave-girls and prostitutes and of women with loose morals. It never was the custom of respectable ladies among the pre-Islam Arabs to intermingle with men. The history of the Arabs bear testimony to this fact. Not only among the respectable Arabs of pre-Islam, but even among the Hindus, Buddhists and other kuffaar of Asia as well as of Europe, intermingling of sexes was not advocated nor practiced by ladies of honour and shame. Shame and respect are natural qualities in human beings. These qualities exist in greater measure in women. The West has abandoned its original culture which they too had inherited from Ambiya, (Alayhimus salaam). They have adopted a culture introduced by Nafs and shaitaan. Their bestial culture has for its salient feature free intermingling of the sexes and immorality which started off with the destruction of Hijaab which also was a custom which Christians had initially obtained from Ambiya (Alayhimus salaam).
The evil which set in the wake of promiscuous intermingling of sexes has already taken its toll of the Muslim nation, the world over. Their abandonment of Hijaab has imposed the libertine ways of the West on them. Without a high degree of morality and spirituality the Muslim nation can never progress. The Muslim Ummah is basically and essentially a spiritual Nation in which the Rooh is supposed to dominate. In the acceptance of Western libertine ways – in the destruction of Hijaab – the bestial nafs has overwhelmed the celestial Soul and the Muslim Ummah is wallowing in a quagmire of corruption and degradation from which it can never extricate itself as long as it plods the path of Westernization. Our moral fibre has been destroyed by the brutal onslaught of immorality which was unleashed by the abandonment of Hijaab.
Hijaab has been abandoned to such a degree that it now seems alien to Muslims. The propaganda of the kuffaar and their modernist Muslim votaries has led ignorant Muslims to believe that Hijaab is not of Islam in spite of the fact that Purdah is an inseparable part of Islam – not only of Islam, but of mankind. Therefore, the task to revive this custom of Islam is not simple. Even Ulama – those Ulama whose belief is correct in regard to Hijaab – have in practical life abandoned Hijaab. They too have fallen in the path of modernity and have adopted a stance of acquiescence to the norms and ways of the libertine Western culture. Reviving Hijaab in our day is, therefore, an ibaadat of the highest merit. Although it may be difficult to revive, the thawaab is tremendous, for Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said:
“He who adheres to my Sunnah at a time when my Ummah has become corrupt, will obtain the Thawaab of a hundred martyers.”
The Thawaab and Divine Pleasure for reviving Hijaab are colossal because in the words of Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam):
“There will soon dawn an age when the one who holds onto the Deen will be like one holding a burning coal”.
It is therefore essential that all Muslims strive to revive the suppressed practice of Hijaab in whatever measure is possible. If total Hijaab is not possible immediately, at least partial Hijaab should be instituted. Hijaab in whatever degree possible should be introduced and then constantly improved on until Hijaab is attained. If full Hijaab cannot be introduced due to circumstances and weaknesses, it does not follow that we should resort to total abandonment of this command of Allah Ta’ala. Strive and make dua. Allah will aid, for He declares in the Qur’aan Shareef:
“Those who strive in Our way, most assuredly, We shall guide them along Our Ways (which lead to our Home, Jannat)”.
Allah is the One Who grants Taufeeq and Hidaayah
MEN WEARING SHORTS ARE EXPOSING THEIR PRIVATE PARTS
Muhammad bin Jahsh (radiyallahu anhu) reports that the Messenger of Allah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) passed by Ma’amar (radiyallahu anhu) while his thighs were exposed. He said: “O Ma’mar, cover your thighs for verily thighs are private parts.” (Miskhaat – Sharhe Sunnat)
Ali (Radiyallahu anhu) reported that the Prophet (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said: “O Ali! Do not keep your thigh exposed, and do not look at the thigh of any living man or dead man.” – (Mishkaath – Abu Dawood ,Ibn Majah)
The Holy Prophet (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said: “For every religion of the world there is a distinctive morality, and the distinctive morality for Islam is Modesty.” – (Ibn Majah)
ISLAMIC HIJAAB (PURDAH)
“O Nabi! Say to your wives, your daughters and to the women of the Mu’mineen that they draw over them their jilbaabs (outer cloaks or burqah). That (i.e. covering themselves with jilbaabs) is the least (minimum requirement which they should adopt) so that they be recognized and not be molested (by shameless people of loose morals).” – (Surah Ahzaab, Aayat 59)
“And (O Women)! Remain within your homes and do not make an exhibition (of yourselves) like the displays (of the immoral women) of former times of ignorance.” – (Surah Ahzaab, Aayat 33)
Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said: “Women have no share in emerging (from their home) except in causes of necessity.” – (Tibraani)
The narrations of the Qur’aan Shareef and Hadith on the subjects of Hijaab (Purdah), Satr and Haya are numerous. These narrations with their attendant masaa-il (rule) will, Insha-Allah, be discussed in this article.
Two Qur’aanic verses and a Hadith have been mentioned at the commencement of this article. The purpose for this being:
1. To indicate that the Law of Hijaab is a Command of Allah Ta’ala and not a concept foreign to Islam as some people who have strayed from Siraatul Mustaqeem would like Muslims to believe. Their obsession with Westernism induces them to argue away the Islamic law of Hijaab as a practice unsubstantiated in Islam.
2. To derive Barkat, a discussion commenced with the auspicious words of Allah Ta’ala and Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) is blessed with the permeation of holiness.
Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said: “Hayaa (or shame and modesty) is a branch of Imaan”.
The importance and significance of shame are amply borne out by this statement of Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam). Imaan is fundamental to the existence of Believers. Without Imaan man has no true existence. Imaan is the basis of success and the pivot of najaat (salvation) in the Aakhirah. The attributes of Imaan are many and among such attributes Hayaa (Shame) is a very important and significant quality. The opposite of shame is audacity or shamelessness which according to the Hadith of Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) is a branch of kufr. The greater the degree of shame in a Mu’min, the more beautiful will be his Imaan. Shamelessness is an indicator of kufr of which there are varying categories and degrees. The greater the degree of kufr, the higher will be the degree of shamelessness and immodesty.
Divine Wisdom has willed shame as a natural quality of women. Woman’s natural quality of modesty becomes spiritually adorned and Lofty with the accompaniment and development of Imaan. The modesty of Muslim women – the women who have not fallen prey to the brutal onslaught of Western libertinism – is, therefore, a quality of unparalleled excellence, nobility and beauty.
Elimination of shame introduces its opposite, viz, immodesty in the wake of which ensues immorality. Immodesty is an essential requirement of immorality. Total elimination of shame results in corresponding total immodesty while partial elimination of hayaa (shame) brings about partial immodesty. It is a moral principle that immodesty in a human being will be in proportion to the degree of the elimination of shame. It is a natural law that when an attribute in man is destroyed, it’s counterpart asserts itself. Thus, when generosity is effaced, niggardliness sets in; when courage is destroyed, cowardice enters; when truth is destroyed, falsehood asserts itself. In the same way, when Hayaa is annihilated, immodesty with its accompaniment of vice and immorality overwhelms man.
It is also a natural law that the impact and intensity of an attribute will correspond to the impact and intensity of its opposite attribute. We, therefore, observe that the degree of immodesty and shamelessness in a lewd, shameless and immoral woman in unmatched. No one can become more audacious in vice and immorality than a woman who has utterly annihilated her natural attribute of Hayaa. The avalanche of immorality and exhibitionism of perversity centering around the female body, up for public display, bear loud and clear testimony to this natural law. The dismal mutilation of morals of the West being keenly imitated by present-day Muslims caught up in the full glare of the sexual cult of libertinism offered by the Western Kuffar is the bitter fruit of the destruction of the Divine measure of Hijaab which Allah Ta’ala has ordained for the preservation of man’s morality, from the very inception of mankind. Muslims should halt a while and ponder! To what extent have they wounded their Imaan by this vile pursuit of liberalism and libertinism? Let them assess the defect which they have introduced into their Imaan by the elimination of Shame which Nabi-e-Kareem (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said is “a branch of Imaan”.
Allah Ta’ala is the Khaaliq (Creator) of man and woman. He is Aleem (the One of knowledge) and He is Khabeer (the One fully aware). He has created in man and woman the capacity of the lowly nafs and He is thus fully aware of the carnal, bestial and inordinate promptings and demands of the nafs. Among the measures ordained by Allah Ta’ala to curb the desires of the nafs and to hold it imprisoned within the confines of purity, morality and spirituality are the rules, regulations, etiquettes, restrictions, prohibitions and exhortations which pertain to the Islamic practice of Hijaab (Purdah). Islamic Hijaab or the moral code of conduct to be observed by man and woman in their mutual conduct is a Divine institution designed by the All-Pervading and Ever-Wise Intelligence of Allah Ta’ala to maintain the dignity, spirituality and honour of human beings.
Islam demands of its adherents a moral life of the highest purity. Fundamental to this attainment is the strict segregation of the sexes or the observance of Hijaab. Mingling of the sexes is permitted only by two circumstance:
1) MAHRAMIYYAT and 2) NECESSITY
1) Mahramiyyat in the context of Hijaab is the family relationship (of blood ties) which initially and permanently prohibits marriage among people who are mahaareem to one another, e.g. between brother and sister; between father and daughter; between uncle and niece, etc.
2) Necessity in this context means all cases and circumstances which are considered by the Shariah as valid grounds for relaxation of, or concession in, the normal strict observance of Hijaab, e.g. an emergency; medical treatment; appearance in a court of law, etc.
This factor of necessity which is cause for concessions in the Islamic law of Hijaab cannot be interpreted loosely and subjected to the desires of the nafs. For example, a woman cannot leave the confines of her home on the pretext that she wishes to engage in trade or in some other mundane or spiritual activity. Concession to emerge will apply only if circumstance compel such emergence. A woman may have absolutely no income and no one to provide for her; there may be no mahram male or any other person from whom she is able to learn the necessary Shar’i masaa-il pertaining to her daily life or she has to attend to her ailing parents, for example, then such circumstances will be considered as necessity and grounds for relaxation of Hijaab partially.
Every case and outing which people regard as necessary will not fall under the Shar’i scope of necessity, and concessions in Hijaab will not be granted by the Shariah. Insha’Allah, these two factors viz. mahramiyyat and necessity, will be discussed in greater detail in this article
THE NORMAL AND GENERAL RULE OF HIJAAB PERTAINING TO NON-MAHAAREEM
MAHAAREEM IS THE PLURAL OF MAHRAM. A mahram in the context of the law of Hijaab is a male with whom marriage is initially and permanently prohibited. Marriage between mahaareem is forbidden at all times. Such permanent mahaareem are father, grandfather, son, brother, nephew, paternal uncle, maternal uncle, grandsons, etc. besides these close-relatives all other males whether strangers or secondary relatives, such as brother-in-law, uncle-in-law, cousin, etc, are described as ghair-mahaareem (non-mahaareem). Total Hijaab is compulsory for all ghair-mahaareem. Hijaab is somewhat relaxed for the father-in-law and mother-in-law. Although total Hijaab is not ordinarily decreed for those two secondary relatives, nevertheless, the Shariah exhorts caution and orders Hijaab for them as well if they happen to be young.
The normal and general rule of Hijaab to be observed for non-mahrams is total seclusion or segregation between the sexes. In this category of Hijaab the woman has necessarily to remain within the home environment and expose nothing of herself, not even her garments. In other words, she is not permitted to emerge from the home environment unnecessarily even clad in a Jilbaab with her face concealed. In this highest category of Hijaab commanded by the Qur’an Shareef, she has to speak from behind a screen if need compels her to speak to a ghair-mahram male. In the following verses the Qur’aan-e-Hakeem commands this high degree of Hijaab:
“(O Women)! Remain within your homes and make not a display (of yourselves) like the exhibition ((of immoral women) of former times of ignorance”. – (Surah Ahzaab, Aayat 33)
“And, when you (men) ask them (women) something (of need) then ask them from behind a screen. That (form of Hijaab of the separating screen) is purest for your hearts and their hearts”. – (Surah Ahzaab, Aayat 53)
The highest category of Hijaab – the total separation between the sexes – is also established by the Hadith of Rasulullah Sallallahu alayhi wasallam. Some of these Ahaadith are:
1) “Woman is an object of concealment. Thus, when she emerges (from her abode of concealment) shaitaan surreptitiously pursues her (and lies in wait to create his fitnah of immorality)”. – (Tirmizi)
2) “Allah curses the one who looks (at females) and the one to whom the gaze was directed (i.e. the woman who emerged unnecessarily from her home and thus caused men to glance at her.) “ – (baihaqi)
3) “Beware of mingling with women”. A man from the Ansaar asked: “What do you (O Rasulullah Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) say about the father-in-law”. Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam)replied: “A father-inlaw is the death (of his daughter-in-law).” – (Bukhari)
Contrary to common understanding, Hijaab for one’s father-in-law (i.e. husband’s father) is necessary, hence, Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) described him as the “maut” (death) of his daughter-in-law. From this will be understood the greater emphasis on purdah to be observed for brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law. Hijaab among such relatives who are mahaareem is practically abandoned by even those who subscribed to the law of Hijaab. Even Ulama frown upon Hijaab which the Shariah has ordered for one’s in-laws.
4) Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said: “Women have no share in emerging (from their homes) except in cases of need”. – (Tibrani)
5) Hadhrat Ali (Radiyallahu anhu) narrates that he was with Nabi (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) when he (Rasulullah Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said: “What is best for woman?” Hadhrat Ali (radiyallahu anhu) said: “All the Sahaabah remained silent. When I returned to Faatimah (Radiyallahu anha). I said to her: ‘What is best for woman?’ She replied: “They should not look at men nor should men look at them.’ I [says Hadhrat Ali (Radiyallahu anhu)] mentioned this to Nabi (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) who then exclaimed: ‘Fatimah is part of me.” – (Daarul Kutni)
6) Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said: “Women should not converse with men other than a mahram” – (ibn Sa’d)
Free, unrestricted and unnecessary conversation is not permissible between men and women.
7) Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said: “A man who casts a gaze at a woman, looks at her garments and discerns her bodily shape, will not smell the fragrance of Jannat.” (shaami)
On the basis of this Hadith, the following Shar’i decree is recorded in the authoritative book of Islamic Law, Shaami: “The import of this statement of Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) is that it is prohibited for a man to view garments of a woman in a way which reveals to him her bodily shape even if the garments are of heavy cloth which is not transparent.”
8) In a Hadith which appears in Abu Dawood, Nisaai, Mishkaat, etc., a woman handed a letter to Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) from behind a screen. This establishes that Hijaab was observed for even Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam).
9) Umm Humaid, the wife of Abu Humaid Saaidi (Radiyallahu anhu) came to Nabi (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) and said: “O Rasulullah! Verily, I love to perform Salaat with you”. Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said: “Verily, I know that you love to perform Salaat with me. But, your Salaat in your little room is superior to your Salaat in your big room…”
Thus, a room for Salaat was erected for her in the remotest corner of her house and she remained performing Salaat therein until she met (i.e. died) Allah Azza wa Jal – (Ahmad, Ibn Khuzaimah, Ibn Habbaan)
10) Hadhrat Abdullah Ibn Umme Maktoom (radiyallahu anhu) was an elderly and a blind Sahaabi of Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam). Once when he came to visit Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam), Umme Salmah and Maimunah (radiyallahu anhuma) two wives of Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said to his wives: “Adopt Hijaab for him” (Withdraw from the place and go into seclusion). Umme Salmah (Radiyallahu anha) said: “O Rasulullah! He is blind and cannot see us”. Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said: “What! Are both of you also blind? Can you not see him?” – (Ahmad , Tirmizi)
If such noble women as the Holy Mothers of the Mu’mineen had to observe Hijaab for even a blind Sahaabi, to what degree will Hijaab then be applicable to people of our lowly caliber dominated by evil and the nafs? Besides the aforegoing Qur’aanic and Hadith narrations there are numerous other Shar’i narrations which prohibit the unnecessary emergence of females from the home environment. The wasiyyat (last wish) of Hadhrat Faatimah (Radiyallahu anha) is most significant in demonstrating the Islamic emphasis on the concealment of women. When Hadhrat Fatimah (Radiyallahu anha) was on her death-bed she made wasiyyat that her janaazah be totally enshrouded with a screening outercovering so that nothing whatsoever of her body and even kafan be seen by men. Hadhrat Fatimah (Radiyallahu anha) expressed this wish despite the fact that:
a) A dead body is not an object of sexual desire
b) The dead female body is wrapped so thoroughly in large sheets that it is impossible to discern any shape of the body. Nevertheless, this wasiyyat was the last wish of the Leader of Womankind in Jannat, and to this day.
The Ummah is adhering to this Sunnah which will endure until the Day of Qiyaamah. This Sunnah of Faatimah (Radiyallahu anha) is a wonderful Tafseer and insight into the Islamic meaning of Hijaab. After all, Faatimah, in the words of Nabi-e-kareem (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) “is part of me”.
The Deen thus demands Hijaab for even the dead. But, in these times of kufr modernity, Muslim ladies have totally abandoned Hijaab at the behest of the libertine culture of the West. Let them take lesson from the wasiyyat of Faatimah (Radiyallahu anha). In contrast to a dead body, Hijaab is applicable in far greater measure to those who are alive. But, those who are alive, in spite of professing Islam, have sacrificed their bodies at the altar of immodesty which brings them within the scope of the Qur’aanic description of “exhibitions of the former times of jaahiliyyah”.
The following Shar’i ruling is stated in Majaalisul Abraar:
“Women should not emerge (from homes) onto the streets. Their emergence is regarded (in Islam) as shameless. It is, therefore, obligatory on a man to forbid his wife from emerging from her home”.
Hadhrat Imaam Hasan Basri (Rahmatullah alayh), the illustrious disciple of Hadhrat Ali (Radiyallahu anhu), criticizing the emergence of women from their homes, said:
“Do you (Muslim men) leave your womenfolk to wander around rubbing shoulders with the kuffar in the market places? May Allah Ta’ala destroy those devoid of honour and shame”. – (Ihyaaul Uloom)
Emergence of women for even the lofty purpose of performing Salaat in the Musjid is prohibited by Islam. In this regard the renowned and authoritative Law Book, Shaami, states:
“Women’s presence at Jamaat Salaat is prohibited even if it is Juma’ Salaat, Eid Salaat or for listening to (Deeni) lectures. This prohibition is general and applies to even old ladies even at night because of the mischief prevalent in our times. This is the authoritative verdict.”
Muslim women who are fortunate to observe Hijaab should understand well that it is not permissible for them to emerge from their homes in an ostensible manner even for attending religious talks and discussion. There can be no holier venue than the Musjid. There is no loftier act than Salaat. But it is prohibited for women to emerge from their homes for even this laudable purpose. People of intelligence may gauge from this prohibition the greater degree of prohibition applicable to woman’s emergence for other frivolous and unnecessary occasions.
Islam permits its females to emerge from the home only when need and circumstances dictate such emergence. When a need which is recognized by the Shariah as a true need exists, the second category of Hijaab will come into operation. This second category is inferior to the first category of Hijaab in which total concealment of the woman including her garments has to be practiced. In the second category of Hijaab emergence will be permissible with certain restrictions being observed.
THE SECOND CATEGORY OF HIJAAB
WHEN CIRCUMSTANCES OF REAL NEED ARISE women are allowed to emerge from their homes. When circumstances compel her to leave the precincts of her home, she has to compulsorily observe the conditions explained hereunder.
a) She must be properly and thoroughly covered in a loose outer-cloak which totally conceals her entire body including her face. In the following Aayat, the Qur’an Shareef commands this Hijaab: “O Nabi! Say to your wives, your daughters and the women of the Believers that they draw over them their jibaabs (outer-cloaks). That (covering with the jilbaabs) is the least (requirement) so that they be recognized (as respectable and honourable ladies) and not be molested (by evil men)”. – (Surah Ahzaab, Aayat 59)
A jilbaab is an outer sheet or cloak which during the time of Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) was large enough to conceal two women. The way in which the ladies during the time of Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) and the Sahaabah wore the jilbaab covered them from head to feet including the face. The term نيندي (yudneena – they should lower or draw down) appearing in the above Aayat orders that the cloak be drawn over from above and lowered in such a way as to conceal the face as well. Covering the face outside the home precincts was the standard and normal practice of the womenfolk during the time of Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam). In this regard Hadhrat Aishah (Radiyallahu anha) narrates:
“During the occasion of Hajjatul Wida when people passed near to us, we (the ladies) would draw the jilbaab over the head and the face. When they (the people) departed from us, we would open our faces”. – (Abu Dawood)
Imam Ghazaali (Rahmatullah alayh) mentions in Ihyaaul Uloom:
“Women emerged (during the time of Nabi (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam)) with niqaabs on their faces”.
Niqaab is a cloth which conceals the face and not a transparent veil. In a Hadith in Abu Dawood an incident is described in which a young man was martyred. His mother, wearing a jilbaab fully covering her face came into the battlefield to enquire about her son. With face fully covered she appeared in the presence of Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam). Some people were surprised to observe that the lady donned face-covering even during an emergency and on such a grave occasion. When she learnt of their surprise, the mother of the slain Sahaabi said:
“My son is lost, but my shame and modesty are not lost”.
In Durrul Mukhtaar, the authoritative Islamic Law Book, the following verdict of the Shariah is recorded:
“Young women are compulsorily prohibited from revealing their faces in the presence of men”.
These narrations are sufficient to indicate that it is an Islamic demand of compulsion for women to conceal their faces when circumstances compel them to leave the home boundaries. This practice of concealing the face was not a later introduction, but existed from the very time of Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam). Certain narrations which indicate that women appeared in the presence of Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) should not be misconstrued and understood to have been the normal practice. Such narrations pertain to either incidents prior to the revelation of the Law of Hijaab or to special circumstances which were exceptional cases and not the normal rule.
It has already been mentioned that this category of Hijaab in which women are allowed to emerge from the home apply to cases of necessity. Such emergence, i.e. even with proper jilbaab covering, is not permissible for trivialities and for participation in events and gatherings which the Shariah does not impose on women nor considers meritorious for women. Among unnecessary gatherings in relation to women are weddings, childnaming ceremonies, funerals, jamaat Salaat, visiting the market or other public places, schools, visiting friends, etc. The Ahaadith mentioning the merits of visiting the sick and rendering services to others outside the home apply in general to men. Special cases will also apply to women. But, in general, such Ahaadith do not apply to women who are not allowed to emerge for such purposes.
It devolves upon men as an obligation – a compulsory demand of the Shariah – to prevent their womenfolk from emerging unnecessarily from their homes and taking to the streets, markets and public-places where they are intentionally or unintentionally making themselves objects of exhibition for all and sundry. If men fail in discharging their obligation and permit their women folk free and unrestricted movement outside the home environment, they will be regarded as sinners along with their womenfolk. Allah Ta’ala commands Muslim men in the Qur’aan Shareef:
“Save yourselves and your family from the Fire (of Jahannam)”
The following appears in Shaami:
“The husband should forbid his wife from visiting strangers (i.e. ghair mahaareem) and attending wedding feasts. If he permits her, both of them will be sinners”.
b) When circumstances compel her to leave the boundaries of the home, she is not allowed to apply perfume. This has been expressly forbidden by Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) who said:
“Verily, a woman who applies perfume and passes by a gathering is like an adulteress”. – (Tirmizi)
What then is Islam’s view of women who emerge from the home scantily dressed, adorned and decorated with perfume and jewels, showing off their bodies and charms to every Tom, Dick and Harry on the public roads? Such women are constantly under the la’nat (curse) of Allah Ta’ala, curse of the Malaaikah and the curses of all creation. This has been stated by Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam).
c) She must not emerge in attractive garments. According to Islam the dress of women also has to be concealed by an outer-cloak which is not of attractive design. The aim of Hijaab is to make woman as
inconspicuous as possible. Attractive garments have the opposite effect. Attractive garments for women are confined to the home environment and for the pleasure of their husbands. Besides her home, all other places in relation to adornment are described by the Hadith as inappropriate places. Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) criticizing women who adorn themselves for purposes and motives other than their husbands, said:
“The likeness of a woman who is in adornment in a place other than her husband’s is that of the darkness which will prevail on the Day of Qiyaamah. There is no Noor for her”. – (Mishkaat)
Negating attractive dress and exhibition by women outside the home, the Qur’aan states:
“Do not make an exhibition (of yourselves) like the display of the former times of ignorance”.
During the age of jaahiliyyah prior to Islam, immoral and lewd women paraded the streets displaying their adornment and finery.
When Muslim women are obliged by circumstances to leave the home precincts, they should not imitate such evil ways of the kuffaar. Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) ordered:
“But, they should emerge in unattractive garments (should need force them to emerge)”. – (Abu Dawood)
Hadhrat Ibn Hummam (Rahmatullah alayh) said:
“If a woman has to emerge from home and go to a place which is permissible for her, she should not go without Hijaab nor in an adorned state. But she should go in an unattractive condition which will not capture the attention of men because Allah Ta’ala has commanded: ‘Do not make an exhibition (of yourselves) like the displays of former times of ignorance.” – (Majaalisul Abraar)
d) When they emerge on account of necessity, they must cast down their gaze and not stare audaciously nor cast surreptitious glances from behind the niqaab (face-covering veil). A niqaab is not a license nor a cover for unlawful glances. The Qur’aan Shareef commands:
“And, tell the believing women to cast down their gaze…” In this dignified and honourable manner Muslim women are permitted to emerge from their houses on account of necessity.
THE THIRD CATEGORY OF HIJAAB
IN THIS CATEGORY OF HIJAAB, besides the face and palms of the hands, the entire body has to be concealed. Permission is granted to set aside the jilbaab and emerge from the home unveiled. This degree of Purdah or Hijaab applies to only elderly women beyond the age of marriage. Granting these concessions, the Qur’aan Shareef says:
“Old women who have no longer hope of marriage (being beyond the age of marriage) – there is no sin on them if they put aside their (excess) garments (i.e. their jilbaabs) without exhibiting their zeenat (their bodies besides their faces and hands). And, if they refrain (from this concession), it is best for them.” – (Surah Noor, Aayat 60)
It is clear from this Qur’aanic Aayat that although a concession is granted for elderly ladies, it is best and Mustahab for them to retain the second category of Hijaab when they emerge. They too like young women should preferably don the jilbaab when they have to leave the home confines. However, it is permissible for them to set aside the jilbaab and leave the face open provided that they do not adorn themselves when they have to emerge from their homes. All other restrictions applicable to young women apply to them as well. They too are not allowed to emerge unnecessarily, with perfume and with finery decorated in the styles of the kuffaar and jaahiliyyah.
The aforegoing discussion has explained the Islamic categories of Hijaab. Some rules of the Shariah in relation to Hijaab will now be mentioned. These rules will adequately convey Islam’s emphasis on the concealment of women.
THE SPIRIT OF HIJAAB IN THE AHKAAM OF THE SHARIAH
1. It is not permissible for women to recite Qira’t audibly in the jahri (audbile) Salaat, viz., Maghrib, Isha and Fajr.
2. During Hajj it is not permissible for women to recite the Talbiyah aloud.
3. A woman who happens to be a muqtadi is not permitted to rectify an error committed by the Imam by calling out “Subhaanallah” as is the case with male muqtadis. To draw the attention of the Imam to the error she has to strike the palm of her right hand on the back of the left hand. Even if the Imam happens to be her mahram (father, husband, son, brother) and all the muqtadis in the jamaat happen to be her mahaareem then too she is not allowed to call out “Subhaanallah” in the way male muqtadis are instructed to do when the Imaam commits an error.
4. It is not permissible for a young woman to greet men even with the Islamic salutation of “Assalamu Alaikum”. In the same way it is not permissible for men to greet young women. If young women say “Assalamu Alaikum” to men it is not Waajib (compulsory) on the men to reply. In fact it is not permissible. The same applies if men great women.
5. It is not permissible to look at even the reflection of a woman in a mirror or in water.
6. Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) forbade men from looking at even the garments of a woman while the garments are on their bodies.
7. If a man knows that a particular woman drank from a glass, it is Makrooh for him to drink of the remaining contents in the glass, not because the contents are impure, but because awareness of the fact that a particular woman drank from the glass is likely to stir passion in the man when he drinks from the glass.
8. Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) advocated Hijaab for even fathers-in-law. In the same way a man has to exercise Hijaab for his mother-in-law if she happens to be a young woman.
9. It is not permissible for a man to look at the nails and hair of a female even after these have been separated from her body.
10. A woman is not allowed to proclaim Athaan and Takbeer.
11. The Salaat which a woman performs in a remote corner in her home is far superior to her Salaat performed in the Musjid, even if it is Musjidun Nabawi.
12. Even while standing in the presence of Allah Ta’ala during Salaat a woman’s entire body from head to feet, barring her face and feet, has to be thoroughly concealed. If even a portion of her hair remains visible for three seconds her Salaat becomes invalid. In Salaat she is obliged to observe the third category of Hijaab which has already been explained.
THE PURPOSE OF HIJAAB
THE AIM OF HIJAAB with its restrictions, prohibitions and exhortations is the preservation and the development of the morality and spirituality of mankind. Without a high degree of moral and spiritual development. Muslims have no hope of success. Intermingling of sexes brings in its wake the worst of immorality and corruption which wreck nations and lay them to waste and ruin.
The factor or reason to which Islam attributes its prohibition of intermingling of sexes is the fitnah (mischief) of lust inherent in the lowly nafs of man. The Qur’aan Shareef terms this fitnah as “Tama” (lowly desire). The Qur’aan Shareef declares that this factor of fitnah exists in all contact and communication between females and males of the non-mahaareem class. In Surah Ahzaab in the Aayat in which Allah Ta’ala commands the Hijaab of the screen, this factor of fitnah is specifically mentioned:
“That (the Hijaab of the Screen) is purest for your (men’s) hearts and their (women’s) hearts.”
In the verse in which Allah Ta’ala prohibits women to speak to men in soft alluring tones, the Qur’aan states the reason for the prohibition to be the lust of the heart, thus, the Qur’aan Hakeem states:
“And, do not speak in soft (and alluring) tones, for then, he in whose heart there is a disease will lust.”
It is noteworthy that the above verse is directed in the first instance to the noble and pure wives of Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam). The Qur’aan describes them as “Azwaajul Mutahharaat” or the Purified Wives. They are also described as the Mother of the Mu’mineen. But, in spite of their lofty rank, holiness, purity and piety, Allah Ta’ala states the existence of this factor of prohibition. Hence, the noble wives of Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) were prohibited to speak in soft tones with men who were at times obliged to speak to them. But, when the Sahaabah had to converse with the Mothers of the Mu’minnen, they did so from behind a screen and these noble ladies would consciously and deliberately alter their voices to border on harshness because of the Qur’aanic prohibition.
Now when this danger of nafsaani desire existed in men and women such as the illustrious Sahaabah and as a result of this danger they were compelled to observed Hijaab then to a far greater degree will this fitnah be present among people of this age who are exposed to immorality in great measure. If Hijaab was obligatory on men and women of the highest purity and piety, on the noble Sahaabah who lived in an age described by Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) as “Khairul Quroon” (the noblest of ages), then what fatwa (verdict) will the intelligence and Imaan of Believers issue regarding its applicability in our immoral times?
THE FEMALE VOICE
ALLAH TA’ALA says to the noble wives of Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam):
“Do not speak in soft (alluring) tones (with men), for them, he in whose heart there is a disease will lust.” – (Surah Ahzaab, Aayat 33)
The female voice possesses the ability to incite passion in man. In the libertine culture of the West this ability is even cultivated and intensified under tuition. Allah Ta’ala, the Creator, being fully aware of the propensities of all things He has created commands that women exercise Hijaab on even their voices and not speak to men – when there is a need to speak – in soft and tender tones. Such alluring speech as modern women demonstrate is intended to attract man and incite in him passion. This too is an introduction to zina (fornication). Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said:
“And, the tongue – its zina (fornication) is speech (with lust)” – (Muslim) Therefore, speech with ghair mahaareem too is a form of fornication in Islam. Such speech has been described as zina because it is a stepping stone towards zina.
The capacity of the woman’s voice to incite passion in the heart of man is expressly stated in the above-cited Aayat. Allah Ta’ala states the reason for this prohibition as:
“… for then, he in whose heart there lurks a disease will lust”.
On the basis of this Qur’aanic Aayat as well as other clear indications of the Sunnah, the Fuqaha (Jurists) of Islam have decreed that the female voice too is satr (to be concealed). It is, therefore, not lawful for a woman to unnecessarily converse with men. Like she is obliged to conceal her face and body from ghair mahaareem so too should she conceal her voice from them. Shaami, the authoritative Law Book of the Shariah, states in this regard:
“And, her voice (too is satr) in the most authentic view.. In cases of necessity it is permissible to speak with women. It is not, however, permissible for her to raise her voice nor Speak (to men) in tender tones, for this attracts men towards her and incites passion in them.”
The restrictions placed by the Shariah on the female voice will be clear from the following examples:
Women are not permitted to recite Qir’at audibly in Salaat.
Women are not permitted to rectify the Imam’s error by calling out “Subhaanallah” as men are ordered to do.
It is not permissible for women to say even “Assalamu Alaikum” to ghair mahram males.
Neither Athaan nor Iqaamat has been ordered for them.
They are not allowed to recite Talbiya (Labbaik..) aloud during Hajj.
MAKING SALAAM TO WOMEN
THE ISLAMIC GREETING OF “Assalamu alaikum wa rahmatullahi waba rakatuhu” is indeed the highest and holiest form of greeting. It is a Dua for the Rahmat of Allah Ta’ala. The one who greets in actual fact supplicates that Allah Ta’ala shower His mercy and bestows His protection on the one being greeted. The Islamic salutation is a pledge of safety and protection offered to the one being greeted. In spite of this noble aim and holiness of the Islamic Salaam, the Shariah has ordered that men do not greet ghair mahram females and females do not greet ghair mahram males.
It is Sunnat to commence the Salaam. When a Muslim meets another Muslim, it is an act of great merit and thawaab to greet him. The one who greets first is superior in relation to thawaab. Although it is Sunnat to greet, it is Waajib (compulsory) to reply to the Salaam. In spite of this significance and importance of Salaam and its reply, the Shariah has waived the obligation of replying to the Salaam of ghair mahaareem. Not only has the Shariah waived the obligation, but it has made it unlawful to reply. This prohibition indicates the high standard of moral purity and piety of the heart demanded by Islam.
This verdict of the Shariah is stated in Shaami in the following words:
“The salaams of a young woman should not be answered verbally. The same applies to a man (i.e. if he makes salaam to a woman, she should not verbally reply)“.
When a Muslim sneezes, it is Sunnat for him/her to say: “Alhamdulillah”. Although it is Sunnat for the sneezer to say so, it is Waajib upon the hearer to say:
“Yarhamu kallah” (May Allah have mercy on you).
But, this obligation has been waived in relation to ghair mahaareem in the same way as applicable to the Islamic salutation.
When Hijaab restrictions are applied by the Shariah to even acts of Ibaadat, then to a greater measure will such restrictions be applicable to mundane activity which invites participation by the sexes.
HIJAAB FOR FATHER-IN-LAW AND MOTHER-IN-LAW
WHEN A SAHAABI ASKED RASULULLAH (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) regarding the observance of Hijaab for one’s father-in-law (husband’s father), Nabi-e-Kareem (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) replied: “The Father-in-law is the death (of his daughter-in-law)”.
Hijaab or Purdah for fathers-in-law and mothers-in-law is nowadays non-existent. These relatives are regarded as permanent mahaareem, hence it is thought that Hijaab for them is not necessary. Even the learned who are fully aware of this Hadith of Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) as well as the exposition and verdict of the Fuqaha on this matter, pretend to be ignorant in this regard. For this reason, most people will be surprised to read many of the Shar’i rulings expressed in this booklet.
Although Hijaab for mothers-in-law and fathers-in-law is of a lesser degree than Hijaab for total ghair mahaareem, nevertheless, the Shariah orders that great caution be exercised. The disaster which can arise out of an illicit relationship between a man and his daughter-in-law is irreparable and irrevocable. Should a man merely touch his daughter-in-law with lust, his son’s nikah with his daughter-in-law will perpetually break. She falls out of his nikah and there is no way in which the couple can never be re-united. Marriage after even three talaaqs is possible under certain conditions, but a nikah broken by a haraam touch of the father-in-law on his daughter-in-law or by the son-in-law on the mother-in-law can never be rectified. The calamity is too great, hence the need for great caution. According to certain Mujtahideen even a lustful glance at one’s daughter-in-law or mother-in-law invalidates the nikah of the partners.
The need for Hijaab of this kind is stated in Shaami as follows: “If the mother-in-law is a young woman, the neighbours are entitled to prevent her son-in-law living with her if they fear any mischief between them.” The same ruling applies to a man and his young step-mother.
MUSAAFAHAH (SHAKING HANDS) WITH FEMALES
FROM ISLAM’S PROHIBITION of even making Salaam to females one can adequately gauge Islam’s prohibition on shaking hands with women. The fitnah in touching women is greater than the fitnah of speaking to women. Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam)said: “The fornication of the hands is to touch (ghair mahaareem)?” – (Bukhari and Muslim)
“It is better for you (men) that a metal rod be plunged into your head than you touching a female who is not lawful for you.” – (Tibrani, Baihaqi)
Hadhrat Aishah (Radiyallahu anha) said that Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) never touched a woman in his life. In our day, the practice of shaking hands with women is a haraam custom inherited from the kuffar and in the words of Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) it is the “zina of the hands”.
TEACHINGS OF ISLAM HAVING A BEARING ON HIJAAB
1. RASULULLAH (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said: “It is not lawful for a woman who believes in Allah and the Last Day to permit any man entry into her husband’s home, but with his consent, nor should she emerge (from the home for even a permissible purpose) while he dislikes it. In this matter she should not obey anyone (besides her husband)”. – (Tibrani, Haakim)
This Hadith establishes the following Shar’i rules: –
– It is not permissible for a woman to allow any ghair mahram male to enter her home in the absence of her husband. Brother-in-law, cousins and such relatives should therefore not visit a home in which the husband is not present.
– If the husband is not present, the wife should not even permit her father-in-law entry to the home.
– If the husband views with disfavor his wife’s relatives, even if they happen to be her mahaareem, coming to his home, she should not allow them to enter without his consent.
– In all such matters, the wife’s first obedience is to her husband and not her parents and relatives.
2. Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said: “Verily, a woman walks in the form of shaitaan. Her approaching and her receding are in the form of shaitaan.” – (Muslim)
This means that shaitaan uses women as a means to trap men into evil. In another Hadith, Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) explains this more clearly:
“I have not left behind me a greater fitnah (trail) for men than women.”
3. Hadhrat Jaabir (Radiyallahu anhu) narrates that he asked Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) regarding an accidental gaze falling on women (i.e. looking at them unintentionally). He said that Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) commanded him to turn away his gaze. This Hadith established that an accidental gaze on a woman is not sinful, for no intention was involved. However, if one does not divert one’s gaze then such looking will be intentional and sinful and will be in conflict with the following Qur’aanic command: “Tell the believing men to cast down their gazes.”
4. Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said: “A man is not alone with a woman, but the third one present being shaitaan”.
The danger of shaitaan being present at mixed gatherings is thus permanent.
5. In one Hadith narrated by Hadhrat Ammaar Bin Yaasir (radiyallahu anhu) “A dayyuth (cuckold) will never enter Jannat”. The Sahaabah said: Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) “What is a dayyuth?” Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) replied: “A man who does not care who visits his wife.”
In terms of this saying of Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) it is extremely dishonorable and shameless for a husband to allow ghair mahaareem to visit, view or converse with his wife. Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) described a virtuous wife as man’s most valuable treasure. A man of honour and decency cannot, therefore, allow this treasure to be misappropriated by the libertine culture inherited from the kuffaar.
6. Hadhrat Ibn Umar (Radiyallahu anhu) said: “Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) forbade that a man walk between two women” – (Abu Dawood)
7. Hadhrat Aishah (Radiyallahu anha) narrates: that Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) cursed a woman who imitates men (in her ways, styles and habits).” – (Abu Dawood)
8. Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said: “There are two screens for a woman. (screens which conceal and guard her dignity and honour) her husband and her grave. The greater concealer of the two is her grave:” – (Tibrani)
9. Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said: “O women! A woman should not describe another woman to her husband thereby a picture of that woman forming in his mind.” – (Muslim)
10. In Majaalisul Abraar it is said:
“As long as a woman remains concealed from men her Deen remains the safest because it has been narrated that Nabi (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said to his daughter, Faatimah: ‘What is best for a woman?” she replied: ‘That a woman should not look at any man nor should a man look at a woman. Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) praised her answer…”
Islam orders that Muslim women observe Purdah (Hijaab) for even non-Muslim females. In this regard the Shariah’s law is strict. The non-Muslim woman falls in the same category as a man in relation to the Islamic law of Hijaab. Thus, the Muslim woman has compulsorily to cover her entire body in the presence of a non-Muslim woman. It is not permissible for a Muslim woman to expose even her hair in the presence of a non-Muslim woman.
Husband’s elder and younger brothers are like death – keep aloof from them
By Maulana Mufti Ahmed Bemat (Shaikh Ul-Hadith)
HADITH: It is reported from Uqbah Ibn Aamir (Radiyallahu anhu) that Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said: “Save yourself from familiarizing with woman”. A Companion asked, “O Rasul of Allah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam)! What do you say regarding the older and younger brothers-in-law?” He said: “They are death” (Bukhari and Muslim).
Just ponder over it. The Rasul of Allah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) is asking women not to come in contact with male strangers (ghayr-mahram, who are not within the prohibited degrees and hence marriage with them is permissible). Similarly, he ordered the male strangers not to go near women nor sit and associate with them as otherwise they would be involved into mischief. The Companion asked, “What is the order regarding those male relatives and older and younger brothers of the husband who happen to live under the same roof? They have of necessity to come in the house” The Rasul of Allah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said: “As for them, they are death”
In explanation of this Hadith the scholars say that no one can save oneself from death. Similarly, it is very difficult to avoid and be aloof from brothers-in-law. The reason is obvious. Since they happen to live under the same roof, one can get many opportunities to meet and sit with them in privacy; and because of their kinship the people as well as the husband usually do not entertain any suspicion. However, through frequent meeting and association, a very precarious situation arises. Hence it is very necessary for the woman to keep herself aloof from her brothers-in-law (both the husband’s brothers and sister’ husbands). In our Muslim society this kinship with the two kinds of brothers-in-law is a subject of joking and jesting from which it is very necessary for the women to abstain shrewdly, as otherwise the arising of an undesirable situation would become the cause of the ruin of the family. Hence one should avoid meeting a ghair-mahram woman in privacy and should cultivate the fear of Allah. If one must approach such a woman, one should talk to her from the other side of the curtain and immediately move out when the talk is over. To sit down often for talking and to indulge in joking is the cause of the ruin of one’s faith and religion. The Qur’aan has given a warning to both men and women in this regard, even when it is necessary to talk from behind the curtain.
THE MODERN WOMAN
[BY MAULANA MUFTI AHMED BEMAT (Shaikh Ul-Hadith)]
ALL ARE PASSING THEIR LIVES according to their own liking. Today the woman is said to be free. But is she really free? On the contrary, her so-called freedom has reduced her to the position of a slave-girl; her life is worse than that of a maid-servant. Are men not exploiting her both at home and outside home in the name of economic betterment? Man, making her share his economic predicament, has compelled her to take up service and she, disregarding the Islamic commandment, has begun to live an outdoor life. Thus she has herself belittled her position and, as it would seem, surrendered her rights; otherwise Islam has told her: “You are the queen of your home. Your husband is liable for maintaining you and your children. Should he divorce you, you have the right to bring up your children and the husband would be responsible for bearing their expenses”.
But, nowadays, instead of maintaining and supporting the wife, it is considered a matter of pride if she is also made to earn money by serving in offices and institutions.
Today the woman is being used as a means of amusing and entertaining strangers. What surprises one is that she feels no shame or qualms in showing off her nakedness! The woman is instinctively modest and bashful but she shamelessly strips herself in cabarets and clubs, sometimes with her own hands and sometimes she asks the spectators to strip her. Does she feel glad in doing so or has she to make a show of gladness in showing off her naked body? In return for all this she gets money. But who has made her greedy and compelled her to sell her body? Today, there are many sympathizers of women but most of them are devils in the garb of human beings. They have no interest in women’s education; they are interested only in her person. When there is no one to check or chide her, how can the woman protect herself or save her honour? Because she is free, how can anyone dare to tell or advise her as to how she can preserve her honour and chastity?
Liberty has intoxicated the woman. She has lost her sense and balance. She cares a tinker’s damn for her honour, chastity and modesty. Even if she is openly dishonoured and insulted, she likes it because she thinks she is free. If someone passes a remark about her youth, beauty or charm even in the presence of her father, brother or husband, they do not feel outraged because they believe that she is a free person. It seems as if all believe her liberty to consist in her shamelessness and immodesty. Probably this is true, because in spite of her shameless and immodest life, all seem to be convinced that woman must be free and live freely. Only the sensible and the faithful – because they fear Allah and are afraid of the Holy Prophet’s (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) displeasure – take a lesson from this state of affairs; whereas all the rest, who think that modern civilization has freed them from the bonds of religion, want freedom and liberty for the women. May Allah reform them and bestow His grace upon them! Aameen.
UNIVERSITIES OF KUFR AND IMMORALITY
The Shariat position of many issues is a fact rarely understood by Muslims affected and spiritually disarmed by western civilization. This is so because their disregard for the fundamental purpose is generally some obscure and remote belief accepted and subscribed to by virtue of the fact that we have been born into Muslim homes from whence we have inherited our beliefs. The purpose of this discussion is to present the Islamic position on the question of Muslim girls being educated in kuffaar institutions of learning . . . on the question of Muslim girls vieing and competing in the acquisition of mundane education under kuffaar direction and dispensation. Muslims entangled in the ramifications of Western technological progress and caught up in the remifications of Western technological progress and caught up in the cesspool of moral and spiritual corruption and bankruptcy ensuing in the wake of the material cultures in vogue, will find it extremely difficult to understand the Islamic position on this question. It is, therefore, necessary to digress a bit from our main topic and dilate on the purpose of our creation and dispatch to this ephemeral existence which is merely a stage – a temporary halt – in our onward march, back home from where we have originally hailed, viz. Jannat, where our Father, Aadam (alayhis Salaam) and our mother, Hawwaa (Alayihimas salaam) were born. Jannat is our birth-place, our original and true homeland.
JANNAT – THE HOMELAND
When it is a cardinal teaching of the Qur’aan and a fundamental belief of all Muslims of the Ahle Sunnah Wal Jamaat that we heralded from Jannat and that we have to again depart from earth to once again and everlastingly inhabit Jannat, then our intelligence will establish that this dunyaa (world) is but a mere phase – a temporary phase – a halt – a tavern – in which we have taken up temporary residence, awaiting for the call to depart and proceed with our onward journey to Jannat. Describing this temporary phase of the world, the Qur’aan Shareef says:
“And for you on earth is a temporary halt and employment (earning livelihood and arranging the affairs of the world) for a while (i.e. an appointed time)”.
The Qur’aan Shareef notifies us of our temporary occupation of earth and clearly informs us of our recall and return from this abode. Lest we forget the temporary nature of our stay as a result of engrossment in material endeavours, the Qur’aan repeatedly reminds us of the worthlessness of worldly material. Says the Qur’aan Shareef:
“Say (O Nabi!) The wealth (and material) of the world is slight. And, the Aakhirah is best for those who fear (Allah Ta’ala)”.
“Know that, verily, the worldly life is play, amusement, adornment, mutual pride and accumulation of wealth and children.”
“And, the life of the world is but play and amusement. And, Aakhirah is best for those who fear (Allah Ta’ala). What! Do you have no intelligence!”
Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam): “The world and everything therein is not worth the wing of a mosquito by Allah”.
The Qur’aan and the Hadith are replete with reminders and exhortations pointing out the futility of the world and the need to be on guard against the deception of worldly glitter which brings about forgetfulness of the Aakhirah:
“Wealth and sons are the glitter of the worldly life; and everlasting righteous deeds are best by your Rabb for sawaab and best for hope.”
As long as the understanding that the world is temporary and that we have to return to Jannat remains obscure and hazy to us, we will lack the initiative to fulfill the purpose for which Allah Ta’ala has created us and sent us here. As long as our attention remains diverted from the Aakhirah, the belief in our purpose of creation will remain a long, distant and remote belief.
The one and only purpose for which Allah Ta’ala has created us and dispatched us for a temporary stay on earth in His Ibaadat. Hence, the Qur’aan Shareef states:
“I have not created jinn and man, but that they render Ibaadat to Me.”
There are many dimensions and categories of Ibadat. A Muslim’s entire life – all aspects of his life, be it material, spiritual or moral – operates within the confines of the Ibaadat for which Allah Ta’ala has created him. A Muslim venturing beyond the demarcation of such Divine Ibaadat which regulates his whole life, is guilty of transgression and rebellion against Allah Ta’ala. It is, therefore, of fundamental importance and in the interests of our salvation in the Aakhirah that we understand well that for a Muslim it is imperative to subject all facets of life to the understanding and demand of the Shariat. His opinion, whim, desire and interpretation must necessarily be sacrificed and abandoned when coming into conflict with the dictates of the Shariat of Allah Azza Wa Jal.
Since the purpose of creation of mankind and jinnkind and of our sojourn here is to render Ibadat – total obedience to Allah Ta’ala – and since our stay here is but for a while, it is only intelligent that we do not lose sight of the onward journey, the goal of which will be Jannat where the total and perfect victory and prosperity will be attained. Intelligence demands that we do not over-burden ourselves with mundane and material preoccupations which constitute impediments in our road unto the Aakhirat Sayyiduna Uthmaan Bin Affaan (Radiyallahu anhu) said in this regard:
“Verily, Allah Ta’ala awarded the dunyaa to you so that you may search for Aakhirah by means of it Allah Ta’ala did not give the world to you so that you incline towards it. Verily, the world will perish and Aakhirah will endure forever. Therefore, do not let this perishable abode reduce you to transgression nor permit it to divert your attention from the everlasting abode. So give priority to the everlasting over the perishable”.
The dunyaa is the means of attaining the Aakhirah – the success and prosperity of Jannat. It is not the end of our life. It is not the purpose of our life. It is a mere vehicle to transport us to the next phase of our march to Jannat. Therefore, it does not behove us to rivet our attention onto this world nor is it intelligent to expend all our energies, physical and moral resources in the attainment and perfection of our material life.
TAKE ACCORDING TO NEED
Since the dunyaa is not our end and goal, we are required to take from it only that much which is necessary for our stay here and which will be beneficial in our attainment of Jannat. Thus, Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said:
“Have you no shame! You accumulate (in excess) that which you cannot eat; you build (mansions) far in excess to your residential needs; you entertain long and distant hopes which you cannot attain. Have you no shame? O Mankind! You think that you are in an abode of comfort and rest whereas you are on a journey. The speed of your onward movement is swift. Therefore, make preparations for the long and difficult journey”.
What does the intelligence of the Mu’min now demand? Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said:
“Verily, of the signs of intelligence is diversion from the abode of deception (i.e to turn way the attention from the world) and to hasten towards the everlasting abode (Jannat). And, among the signs of intelligence is to prepare for the stay in the grave and to be equipped for resurrection.”
It will now be clear, in terms of Rasulullah’s (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) exhortation, that engrossment in the world and hankering after material, technological, economic pursuit and perfection at the expense of the Deen which is the pivot on which the attainment of Jannat hinges, is both unintelligent and self-destructive, besides the transgression of the Shariat which such worldly pursuit brings about.
THE ISLAMIC ROLE OF WOMEN
The role assigned to woman by Allah Ta’ala is essential for our orderly progress in the journey towards Jannat. If any cog in the machine – in the engine of the vehicle – which is to transport us to Jannat becomes defective or ceases to perform the function for which it was made, then our journey will become rough and fraught with disaster. The Shariat has assigned the development of the home unit – the internal affairs of the home unit – the internal affairs of the home – to woman. This is her primary function. It is of fundamental importance that she guards and protects that fortress, for she has been appointed by Allah Ta’ala to captain that bastion of culture and society which is a vital aspect of Divine Ibadat for which we have been created and sent here. Neglect in that bastion of Islamic civilization and Divine Culture, viz, the Muslim home, will bring about, not only weakening in Islamic social structure, but will cause the crumbling and total eradication of Islamic Order which is an important dimension of Divine Ibadat for which we have been created and sent here. The consequences of this neglect are clearer than daylight. We can witness the havoc which the destruction of Islamic society has brought about. The story is too bitter to be told. We all know of our utter demoralized and degenerate moral, spiritual and political condition. Denial of this self-evident fact should be assigned to the realm of absurdity.
In the discharge of her duty and responsibility, viz., the home affairs, it is essential that a woman subjects herself to all the advices, exhortations, commands and restrictions of the Shariat of Allah Ta’ala. Emergence from the Shar’i confines and prescribed limits will bring in its wake ruin and disaster. The Qur’aan states:
“These are the limits of Allah. Whoever transgresses the limits of Allah, verily, has wronged his soul”.
A healthy social structure – a culture – a civilization – will be an order which operates within the confines of Islamic Ibadat which covers the home life, the success of which is dependant on woman discharging her role of Ibadat. Any interference in this Divinely assigned role will be unlawful. Any act or activity which diverts her attention from the execution of her primary function of developing her home along the pattern commanded by Allah Ta’ala, will be un-Islamic, transgression and beyond the scope of the Ibadat for which Allah Ta’ala has created us and sent us here. It now remains to be seen if educating our girls along kuffar lines and sending them to kuffaar institutions of learning – schools, universities and colleges – facilitate or impede the Divinely assigned role of woman, the role which is an essential cog in the machine which has to transport us to our home land, Jannat. This will now bring us to our main topic of discussion for which the above digression was necessary.
WHAT IS THE PURPOSE OF WESTERN EDUCATION
The actual purpose of mundane educations or of those branches of worldly education which deal with materialism, is technological progress which is thought to be essential in the acquisition of comfort, peace, prosperity and power. Worldly education is pursued for purposes of livelihood, attaining good and high-placed employment which promises high salaries and position in worldly society. Viewing worldly education from this purpose, it is totally unnecessary for Muslim girls to pursue such education even upon the hypothetical assumption that the pursuit of such mundane education does not entail any conflict with any principles, teachings and commands of Islam. In reality, pursuit of Western education via the agency of kuffaar institutions is littered with pitfalls and dangers which are most destructive to Imaan and Hayaa. Allah Ta’ala has not assigned the role of earning livelihood on woman. The Qur’aan states very clearly:
“And men have a rank above women”.
Man’s position being higher than that of woman is further outlined in the following verse of Surah Nisa:
“Men are the rulers over women by virtue of the rank which Allah has assigned to come over others and because they spend (i.e. maintain financially) of their wealth”.
The Shariat has made men responsible for the maintenance of women. The duty of earning the livelihood according to the Quraan is not the obligation of the woman. It is the compulsory obligation of the husband and the father. The Qur’aan confines the scope of her role to within the home environment, hence the responsibility of earning the livelihood has not been burdened onto her. By nature as well as by the decree of Allah’s Law she is not suited to emerge from the home and earn livelihood. She has not been cast into that external mould by Allah Ta’ala hence the Shariat makes earning of the livelihood compulsory upon the man.
Now, since earning livelihood is not her responsibility. It is not at all necessary for her to explore and pursue avenues of livelihood among such avenues, worldly education is pursed. Schools and universities are, therefore, bridges in this pursuit. She is not responsible for earnings, hence there is no need for her to engage in worldly education designed towards this end, even if such education could be imparted in places and institutions which are free of the moral and spiritual corruption attendant to Western schools and universities. Pursuit of such education will severely impede her home activities and bring about total disruption of the home which is a unit of society. Disruption of these home-units will produce a society of disruption, chaos and degenerations which we are so much witnessing nowadays.
Islam assigns a sacred pedestal to livelihood, so much so, that Nabi (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said:
“Halaal earning is the compulsory duty after the compulsory duty of Salaat”.
Despite this importance, Islam has not made livelihood obligatory upon women. The obligation of earning has been decreed upon men because involvement in this pursuit leaves no time for attending to the affairs of the children and home affairs. Earning livelihood will constitute a serious impediment in her duty to execute her Islamic duty to the home. The Shar’i division of duties is designed for the healthy development of society within the confines of Divine Ibadat for which we have been created and sent here. Livelihood or pursuit of livelihood by woman will compel her to neglect her Divinely imposed duties, bringing disruption, transgression and corruption in its wake.
Since Islam has negated earning of livelihood from woman, the transgression of her attending school and university in this quest is manifest.
ANOTHER PURPOSE OF WORLDLY EDUCATION
Another purpose of acquiring worldly education is not for livelihood, but for the attainment of some fame, glory and position in society. This purpose is notorious and un-Islamic. It is haraam for both men and women to pursue worldly education for such a despicable purpose. Those who embark on the pursuit of mundane education for this reason are deviated and diverted from the Aakhirah from the very inception of their worldly careers.
Since there exists no worthy purpose of woman pursuing worldly education, there is absolutely no need for her to attend kuffaar institutions of learning.
NOT ONLY UNNECESSARY
Pursuit of worldly education and that too, aggravated by the agencies of kuffaar institutions, is not only unnecessary. When taking into consideration the evil, immorality, kufr, disruption of home-life, and elimination of Islamic value which are the resultant consequences of the liberalism and kufr of un-Islamic institutions of education, then without the slightest doubt, it will never be permissible for Muslims to send their daughters to schools and universities.
FUSSAAQ AND FUJJAAR ASSOCIATION
The Shariat commands that women do not appear in the presence of even pious and mut-taqi Muslim males. If this is the Divine Prescription pertaining to female presence in pious Muslim male company, then what says the intelligence of the Mu’min when his daughter is projected into the association of kuffaar – atheists, drunkards and fornicators? Hajj is a duty obligatory upon both men and women. But, in the absence of a mahram (a righteous male escort within the prohibited marriage category) it is not lawful for a Muslim female to go for even this great Ibadat of Hajj which is a fundamental of Islam. What, then, will be Islam’s attitude towards an association in which the daughters of Mu’mineen are entrusted to the care, direction and tutelage of kuffaar, fussaaq and fujjaar constantly engaged in schemes to plunder and pillage their shame, modesty, chastity and Imaan? Consult your heart and your Imaan!
If a blood-uncle or blood-brother of a woman happens to be a faajir (immoral person) and a fasiq (transgressor of the Shariah) then it is not lawful for the Muslim niece and sister to travel in the accompaniment of such men of irresponsibility and immorality. Yet, Muslim parents of today think nothing of assigning their daughters to the care of kuffaar in institutions of kufr where Iman is constantly exposed to the pressure of kufr and immoral indoctrination.
The evil and immorality which stem from Western institutes of learning are too well known to require any elaboration. The kuffaar press is replete with reports of vice and immorality perpetrated at Western schools and universities. So contagious is the malady of immorality of kuffaar institutions that of late we are witnessing the perpetration of such vice and immorality even in madrassahs where these children schooled in Western institutions come for Deeni Ta’leem. Elsewhere in this article is a report on the perpetration of such immorality inherited from the institutions of the kuffaar.
The illegitimate birth rate at Western schools is on the rise, yet Muslim parents choose to remain blind. Since schools and universities are considered respectable institutes of “Learning”, Muslim parents eject their daughters from the home environment and throw them to the wolves of kufr and immorality in the schools and universities of fisq and fujoor. What answer will you give unto Allah Ta’ala for devising this rape of your own daughter’s modesty and hayaa? Parents should hang their heads in shame. They cannot escape the Divine Punishment, the first effect of which they will experience right here on earth – the abode to which we have been sent for Ibadat and Zikrullah.
DESTRUCTION OF HAYAA
Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said:
“Hayaa (natural shame and modesty) is a branch of Imaan”.
This branch of Iman is to be found more developed in Muslim women than in men. It is a natural weapon which Allah Ta’ala has given them as a fortification against the satanic onslaught of evil and immorality. But, schools and universities are the very antithesis of such Islamic and Imaanic Haya. Schools and universities utterly destroy this Haya substituting in its place gross shamelessness which is so much responsible for the profusion of sexual offences and immorality witnessed today.
Elimination of shame and modesty is supplanted by immodesty of the worst type. It will therefore be seen that women from whom modesty has departed are the most audacious in shamelessness. Islam has said that woman is “aurah” – a person to be away from public gaze. Her body is an object of concealment in the words of Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam), but parents are responsible for projecting and exposing their daughters by sending them to schools and universities. The Qur’aan Shareef commands:
“And cling to your homes, and do not exhibit (yourselves, O daughter of Islam!) like the exhibitions of the times of Jaahiliyyah (ignorance of pre-Islamic time)”.
At schools and universities they are tutored to exhibit themselves, to display their “aurah”, to fling their arms and expose their legs shamelessly. Recently in a secular school with a predominant Muslim attendance, our daughters participated in a zina display of an exhibition known as “drum-majorettes”. Does your Imaan instruct you to ruin your daughter’s hayaa and chastity by the perpetration of such vile aspects of zina? Does your Imaan command you to reveal your daughter’s aurah in this gruesome and immoral display of body revelation? You, the parent, will answer unto Allah Ta’ala.
Even forms of pure Ibadat which necessitate emergence from the home have not been made obligatory upon women since emergence from the home impedes the orderly operation of her home affairs and it wroughts destruction to the natural hayaa of women. We, therefore, see that the Shariat has not ordered them to perform Salaat in jamaat, nor is Juma Salaat Waajib upon them. These constitute essential and vital forms of Ibadat for males. When such is the attitude of Allah Ta’ala, viz., restricting them from public performance of even vital acts of Ibadat, then what will be the Divine Attitude towards female participation in activities which are neither commanded nor necessary? What, indeed, will be Islam’s attitude towards female emergence from the home to pursue worldly education to which is attendant the foul factors of kufr, destruction of hayaa and immorality?
HAPPENINGS INSIDE KUFFAAR INSTITUTIONS
Are parents aware of the spiritual ruin and kufr which are being propounded and practiced in the schools and universities of the Kuffaar? Do they know in whose care have they entrusted their daughters? The writers of this article are fully aware of the inside going-on prevalent in schools and universities. We, therefore, speak with conviction, firm knowledge and the authority of the Shariat. What we are claiming cannot be dismissed or regarded lightly, for this matter concerns your Imaani life and your Aakhirah.
From the Shariat point of view all the instructors and teachers of kuffaar institutions are fussaq and fujjar. The exceptions are not considered here, for such exceptions are mere drops in the ocean of organized destruction of Imaan and hayaa. Islam emphasizes self-denial but schools and universities with their emphasis on liberalism propagate the doctrines of self-expression. Girls studying at such institutions are tutored to assert false independence, to exhibit themselves, to express themselves, to vie and compete in affairs which the Shariat has imposed upon men. It teaches them to parade their charms and beauty whereas the Shariat commands them to conceal their aurah. Schools and universities teach them that modesty and shame are psychological defects and barriers to progress, but Allah Ta’ala tells us that these are virtues of a very high order.
“The pious women are those who are obedient (to their husbands) and are protectors in the absence (of the husband) of that which Allah has (commanded) to protect”.
Universities instill into her that she is her own “boss”. She therefore has to employ all such means destructive to modesty and negatory of the restrictions and prohibitions of the Shariat. By her attitude of selfexpression she tries to assert herself, deceiving herself that she is on par with the “fadhilat” and rank Divinely accorded to men. In this process of self-assertion she ejects herself from her natural Haya which according to Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) is an integral part of Iman. Her end is disastrous. Her disastrous end is being daily witnessed, on the streets and in the newspapers; in the cinemas and on the television screens; in her attitude towards home and her Divinely assigned role. Modern woman, the product of kuffaar institutions of “learning” has become a stranger to the home, for she has been schooled to detest the role which Allah Ta’ala has suited and equipped her for. She thus detests children and regards her natural role of rearing children as a detestable burden. This is your modern woman, the graduate of kuffaar “learning”.
Extramural activities such as sport are important aspects of kuffaar schools and universities. This activity is dubbed “sport” which is defined: “Amusement; diversion; fun, etc.” The “sport” of the kuffaar are acts which truly divert from the remembrance of Allah and the Aakhirah. Muslim girls participate in such forms of amusement and diversion in which there are hideous exhibitions of woman’s aurah, the concealment of which is Waajib. Islam advocates this concealment, but the sport of the schools and universities negates such concealment. Girls are instructed to exhibit and demonstrate their charm and their bodies in totally un-Islamic and Haram displays. Do parents then think that such exhibitionism is conducive to safeguarding the morals and hayaa of their daughters?
FUTILITY OF WORLDLY EDUCATION
Insofar as women are concerned – Muslim women – the type of education provided in secular schools and universities is absolutely futile. There is absolutely no benefit to be gained by them from such education. Muslim women, in fulfillment of their divinely assigned role will have to take up their positions as wives and mothers. It is their obligatory duty to conduct the home affairs within the ambit of Divine Ibadat. In this sphere of their existence – which is the purpose which they have to honour and fulfill – neither mathematics nor biology will assist them; neither science nor proficiency in the languages of the kuffaar; neither geography nor physiology. In short, whatever has been acquired at schools and universities will be of no aid to the Muslim woman in her role as wife and mother. The over-whelming majority of mankind go through life without the aid of worldly education of the kind catered for in Western schools and universities. Most, men even know nothing of what they had learnt at school. It is unimportant in our daily lives.
Their years of childhood and adolescence are squandered in the acquisition of a destructive “culture” in the schools instead of being expended in the acquisition of that knowledge and practice which will be beneficial, not only in this world, but will be the basis of salvation in the everlasting Abode of the Aakhirah. Parents have a compulsory duty upon them to equip their children, not only their daughters, with the knowledge of the Deen so that their lives ahead could be regulated in conformity with the Shariat. But, most parents of these times have chosen to advance the education of the kuffaar and equip their children with the qualifications of kufr learning, and in the process they are not concerned of the spiritual disaster and calamity they are inviting upon themselves and their children.
PARENTS – THE ENEMIES OF THEIR DAUGHTERS
Parents, in their ignorance, labour under the notion that they are rendering a great service to their daughters by sending them to schools and colleges but, in fact, they are the number one enemies of their daughters. In Majalisul Abrar it is stated:
“A friend of a man is one who strives to develop the Aakhirat of his friend even if in such striving there be harm to the worldly life of his friend. And, the enemy of a man is one who strives to bring about ruin to one’s Aakhirat even if in such striving there be benefit to the worldly life of the one concerned”.
In sending their daughters to kuffaar institutions, parents are destroying the Aakhirat of their daughters even though in their short-sightedness, they discern worldly benefit. In sending their daughters to colleges and universities, parents are digging the grave of the Imaan of their daughters. In Shu’bul Iman it is narrated:
“Verily, Imaan and Haya are complimentary parts, existing together. The elimination of the one brings about the elimination of the other.”
There is absolutely no doubt in the fact that schools and colleges eliminate the Haya of women. The danger of the elimination of their Imaan is thus grave and real. Are parents then to be considered the friends or enemies of their daughters? Allah Ta’ala commands parents in the Quraan-e-Kareem:
“Save yourselves and your families from the Fire”.
Are parents saving their daughters from Jahannum by sending them to schools and universities? On the contrary, they are hastening the headlong plunge of their daughters into Jahannum. You can save your children from the Fire by guarding and developing their Imaan, not by destroying their Imaan in the guardianship of kuffaar tutors and fujjaar instructors operating on a syllabus impregnated with kufr.
NO CONCERN FOR AKHIRAT
It is because of indifference towards the Aakhirat that parents are behaving in such an irresponsible and un-Islamic manner by sending their daughters to schools and universities. Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said:
“He who is arrested by the love of his world will suffer the harm of his Aakhirat. And, he who remains in love with his Aakhirat will be in difficulty in his world. Give priority to the Everlasting over the perishable”
Here Nabi (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) instructs the Ummah to opt for the betterment of the Aakhirat even if worldly loss and disadvantages are entailed in this pursuit of the Aakhirat. The worldly life is but a temporary phase for which we must not exhaust our effort and morals. The Aakhirat is the Everlasting Abode. We, therefore, have to strive in its attainment no matter the worldly setbacks we may suffer in this direction. Hadhrat Salaman Faarsi (Radiyallahu anhu) said:
“When man detests worldly affairs, then his heart becomes illumined with hikmat (wisdom) and his limbs become active in the Divine Ibaadat. Therefore give priority to the everlasting over the perishable”.
You parents must now beware. You are paving the way for destruction of your daughters’ Imaan and Aakhirat. You will be answerable to Allah Ta’ala, but even before having to answer to Allah, most parents will witness the spiritual disaster which school and university education will bring upon their daughters.
PHYSICIAN AND ISLAMIC PROPRIETY
The free, unrestrained, and erotic routine medical examination by male doctors of female “patients” is a practice contrary to the teachings and spirit of the Shariah. Like Islam places restrictions on male/female relationships in other spheres of life, so does it in the medical field. The doctor by virtue of his qualification as a medical practitioner is not exempted from the Islamic restrictions of Hijaab. In Islam, medicine is not a license to ignore the Purdah restrictions.
Muslim doctors have to bear in mind that their first allegiance is unto Allah Ta’ala and His Divine Shariah and not to “medicine” and the “medical” ways and customs of the Kuffaar. The tenets of the “Hippocratic oath” – whatever the oath enshrines – has no preference and importance whatever if these are in contradiction of Islam.
According to the Shariah the male doctor is not at liberty to view unnecessarily any part of the female body. The Shariah emphasizes that wherever possible women patients should seek women doctors. In the absence of a female doctor then only should a woman report to a male doctor for treatment.
The Muslim physician when examining females should not adopt the ways and mannerisms of non-Muslim doctors, but should fear Allah Ta’ala, observe propriety and proceed with his examination endeavouring to observe the Islamic Hijaab restrictions to the very best of his ability. The shariah has left no facet of our life undefined. Rules have been prescribed by the Shariah for physicians when attending to female patients. The great Islamic Book of Law, Hidayaah, states:
“It is permissible for the physician to look at the affected part (of the female body) because of necessity. It is preferable that he administer the treatment of the female (patient) through the service of woman. If this (the obtainal of the services of a lady) is not available then it (is incumbent) that the entire body (of the female patient) be covered and that only the affected part be exposed. He may then (i.e. after covering the entire body of the female patient) look (at the exposed part) inhibiting his gaze to the best of his ability”.
In short, only that extent of the body is to be exposed which is absolutely necessary.
The shariah is well aware of the sexual misdemeanours which could result from the uninhibited examination of female by male physicians, hence the restrictions. Doctors too are aware of this fact – “erotic contact” with patients – which has been well-established by surveys conducted by doctors themselves. One such survey revealed that 13 percent of 460 doctors who participated in a confidential survey confessed “erotic contact” with patients . What is “erotic contact”? According to Professor Sheldon Kardner and Dr. Ivan Mensch who organized the survey of the medical doctors’ erotic antics – “erotic contact” with patients “meant everything from kissing to canoodling to sexual intercourse”. This study was done at the University of California, Los Angeles.
A report on the erotical behavior of the medical practitioners, which appeared in the “Sunday Times”, goes a long way to prove that the observance of the Shariah rules of Hijaab by both Muslim doctor and patient is of vital importance. Muslim women should fear Allah Ta’ala in this regard and visiting a male doctor should be the last – very last – resort.
A word of soothing and healing Islamic advice (in which there is “Shifa”) for Muslim ladies: if you observe the Divine Purdah restrictions rigidly eliminating the visiting to doctors for every minor illness, Allah Ta’ala will preserve you and cure you of the ailments which befall those who are reckless in discarding the Shariah Laws of Purdah. Allah Ta’ala is “Shaafiyul Mardh” – the Curer of illness.
LETTERS TO THE EDITOR
Why single out women?
This letter refers to all the millions of articles published every day by the concerned brothers who seem to have nothing better to do with their time other than instructing women about how to dress, how to behave, and so on. Surely man is no mediator between Allah and a woman.
It is true that a woman should dress respectable and should never intentionally wear clothes that would make her look desirable. But is it right to label a woman as not being really Islamic just because she chooses not to cover her hair? I am sure there are a few women who might even look better with their hair covered. I know I certainly would if I were to cover my hair with a luscious, silky wig! Wouldn’t intentions be important in this case? Anyway, why should women be always singled out to follow the Qur’aan word for word while the rest of society may do what it pleases? For example, do men always lower their gazes when they see a woman. Somehow it seems like they do quite the contrary.
Being a student in this country, I unfortunately have many opportunities to notice how the Muslim “brothers” behave. Most of them have American girl-friends galore while still making their attendance at Islamic meetings, prayers, etc. when it comes to marriage, however, they undergo a sudden “change” in ideas , fly home and marry a pure, innocent (and may I say unfortunate?) girl. To top it all, they have the audacity to instruct their wives to cover their hair, etc, etc. I have also know many “Muslim” men who enthusiastically clap and dance with a belly-dancer, while their wives, covered modestly from head to toe, try not to look uncomfortable. Now, why doesn’t somebody write articles about how these “Muslim Brother’s should behave?
As for the proper mode of dressing, there is one more point I would like to make. Aren’t the clothes that Muslim men wear, typically, tight-fitting. European – style pants with shirts tucked in far more attractive than a woman’s hair left uncovered? Do men have all the monopoly in “being attracted” and God forbid that a woman, too, may have such feelings therefore, I would like to suggest that the next time our concerned brothers are about to write articles or make comments about how a woman should dress, they should first look at themselves to make sure that they are wearing robes like some of the Arabs, or the loose-fitting tunic outfits that religious Muslim men wear in Pakistan.
VASEERN FIRDAUS, Highland Park, New Jersey Editor – we invite comments from our readers. (Reproduced from the journal, “Muslim”)
ISLAMIC DRESS: Our Comments
The above letter we have reproduced from the “Muslim”, the journal of the Fiji Muslim League. The letter, captioned “Why single out women”, originally appeared in the journal, “Islamic Horizon”. Comments have been invited. We give our comments here.
COMMENTS OF PARAGRAPH 1
If by “concerned brothers”, our sister refers to any specific group or organization in the United States then we will not contest her claim since there may be some validity in what she is saying. However, if her statement is are remark made in general, then we must disagree. In their Deeni activities, men of the truth, especially the Ulama-e-Haqq do not concentrate on any one aspect. Amr Bil Ma’ruf Nahy Anil Munkar is a command of many dimensions. It may be that because of the excessive prevalence of a particular sin, crime or un-Islamic practice greater attention be directed into that direction. But such attention would only be natural, reasonable and in full conformity with the Command of Allah Ta’ala. Thus, “instructing women how to dress” will come within the purview of the Shar’i duty of Amr bil Ma’ruf Nahy Anil Munkar. Condemnation of an evil will be proportionate to its prevalence and gravity.
COMMENTS ON PARAGRAPH 2
Our sister asks:
“But is it right to label a women as not being really Islamic just because she chooses not to cover her hair!”
Any “labeling” shall be by the command of Allah Ta’ala. If Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) has commanded anything, then neglect or transgression of such command will be labeled with the appropriate epithet prescribed by the Shariat. Therefore, if a woman or a man for that matter, dresses in a way which is in conflict with the commands of Allah Ta’ala then it shall be said that such action is un-Islamic. As far as a woman is concerned, the hair is part of her “SATR” (that part of the body which must be compulsorily concealed from all ghair-mahaareem). If she performs Salaat even in darkness and in solitude, enclosed in a room, but her head is uncovered, then her Salaat will not be valid. The concealment of her hair in even Salaat is of absolute importance. Without any doubt, the Shariat commands its female adherents to cover their hair, hence, exposure of the hair will be an un-Islamic and forbidden act. A woman guilty of such an aspect of nudity is deprived of the blessings of Allah Ta’ala. This has nothing to do with personal labeling. It is the command of Allah Ta’ala to which all sisters must submit. It is imperative that they sacrifice their reasoning and whimsical fancies when these come into conflict with the Deen.
Our sister remarks:
“I know that I certainly would (look better) if I were to cover my hair with a luscious, silky wig!”
If this is a sarcastic remark then let us warn her that she is guilty of mocking at a command of the Deen. Neglect or transgressing a command of the Deen is grave and sinful. But mocking and regarding light-heartedly a command of the Deen is termed “istikh-faf” and such istikh-faf is kufr which relegates one beyond the fold of Islam. If, therefore, our sister made the remark in jest, mocking at the Shar’i command to cover the hair, then she should turn toward Allah Ta’ala in repentance and renew her Imaan by proclaiming the Kalimah of Islam.
For her benefit it is necessary that she realizes that the “luscious” looks which she speaks of will be a dimension of zina if exhibited for any male other than her husband. The meaning of “covering the hair” is not covering it with some object like a “luscious-looking wig” which negates the very purpose of concealment. Covering the hair means total concealment – concealment designed to check evil and degenerate male glances and not a form of “covering” devised to attract the attention of men by means of lascivity. Such “covering” is not covering in Islam. It is exposure and exhibitionism which are the opposites of Islamic modesty and shame.
Our sister asks: “Anyhow why should women be always singled out to follow the Qur’an word for word while the rest of society may do what it pleases?”
We are in full agreement with her IF her observation refers to the socalled loud-mouthed, self-righteous modernist Muslim men who although devoid of Islamic knowledge and extremely deficient in Imaan and Islamic practice, blare up loud and long slogans of “Da-wah” and “Ummah” programmes. It is never the practice or the policy of the true Standard-Bearers of Islam. The Ulama-e-Haqq, to single out women as “targets” of Amr Bil Ma’ruf. Any reference to the evil practices of nudity and exhibitionism perpetrated by our sisters in Islam, is by the natural and compulsory function of the Divine Command of Amr Bil Ma’ruf Nahy Anil Munkar. Such Amr Bil Ma’ruf is directed at all sections of the Ummah by the Ulama-e-Haqq. But, we do agree that our modernist so-called sympathizers of the Deen professing their concern for the the Ummah seem to be afflicted with the obsession of women. At times they go to the one extreme of breathlessly attempting to expel woman from the home and project her into the Musjid and other activities under the name of Islam, and at times, they veer to the other extreme of SINGLING out women for their un-Islamic dress. But NEVER do they even breathe about the kuffaar dress which they themselves (the modernist so-called da-wah workers) don. In their imitation of kuffaar dress no Muslim who happens to be a stranger will recognize them as being Muslim. These then are the men guilty of singling out women for directing their remarks about Islamic dress. We shall go a step further and say that their external condition, the way of dressing, their attitude to the Sunnah of Nabi (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) and their flirtation with kufr beliefs demonstrate their hollowness and their insincerity. They single out women not because they have any concern for Islamic or the Hijaab teachings of Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) but on the contrary, they detest the fourteen-hundred year old teachings of Islam. Under the name of Islam they seek to give respectability for the projection of their obsession with women. What after all, could be expected of the modernist so-called da-wah exponent smitten by Western influences. The Western man with his culture, heavily emphasizes on female exhibitionism, hence our modernist Muslim dawah fan – he does not have the vaguest conception of da-wah – in total and blind imitation of his Western partner portrays his obsession, but attempts to give it an Islamic tag.
COMMENTS ON PARAGRAPH 3
Our sister speaks of “how the Muslim brothers in the United States behave”.
According to her “most of them have American girl-friends galore while still marking their attendance at Islamic meetings.”
What our sister has said is no secret. This behavior of Muslim students and Muslim men working in the United States and elsewhere in the Western world is exemplary of their hypocritical behavior. These fussaq and fujjar are the very culprits who sit at the conference tables of “Islamic” conventions and “da-wah” programmes. This very type of immoral character happens to be at the head of Muslim governments of the day. This very type of traitor to the Deen by day sit at some religious conference-table propounding selfrighteously lofty slogans of da-wah, unity and “Islamic” brotherhood, but by night he prowls the Western alleyways of gambling-dens and brothels.
The corruption and degeneration of these self-righteous proponents of da-wah, unity and brotherhood are of such a vile nature, that our sister quite rightly asks:
“Now, why doesn’t somebody write articles about how there ‘Muslim Brothers’ should behave?”
Sister, we share your feeling on this question. Send us some information on the un-Islamic activities of the self-righteous “Muslim Brothers” and we promise you some articles. It is essential that the un-Islamic and haram nocturnal and sleazy habits and practices of such modernists be exposed so that parents who send their sons and daughters to study kufr education abroad will not be in the dark. It is necessary that parents realize the corruption which lies festering under the outer facade of Western learning and education.
COMMENTS ON PARAGRAPH 4
Our sister writes: “Aren’t the clothes that Muslim men wear, typically, tight-fitting, European-style pants with shirts tucked in …”
Yes, indeed such garments adopted by modern Muslim men and older Muslim men suffering from the mental disease of inferiority, are in conflict with the type of dress which Muslim men should wear. An Islamic dress is one which along with the Islamic requirements of humility and modesty, serves the FUNDAMENTAL purpose of identifying a Muslim. A Muslim must be known to be a Muslim by his garb. Islamic identifying dress is among the Sha-‘air of Islam. The modernist man is most audacious in his hypocrisy to single out women for their un-Islamic dress while he blindly imitates every aspect of the Western kuffaar.
It is in the interests of their lowly desires to justify their un-Islamic Western-style dress because the adoption of an Islamic dress in a fast moving Western country of sin will deprive them of their “belly-dancers” and their “American girl-friends galore”. Islamic dress, in itself, is a great and wonderful barrier to immorality.
Our sister concludes her letter:
“Therefore, I would like to suggest that the next time our concerned brothers are about to write articles or make comments about how a woman should dress, they should first look at themselves to make sure that they are wearing robes like some of the Arabs, or the loose-fitting tunic outfits that religious Muslim men wear in Pakistan”.
We endorse this sound advice given by the sister to the “concerned brothers” of the United States and of other Western countries. It is food for their thoughts. It is advice worthy of accepting and reflecting on. However, we must add that, Al-Hamdulillah, the Ulama-e-Haqq who will write and speak about the immodest and un-Islamic female dress adopted by Muslim sisters, are in possession of this qualification stipulated by our sister. Therefore, should our sister read any article or comment by us on dress of Muslim women, then she should not interpret it as a case of “singling out women” and she should also know that we subscribe to the loose-fitting Islamic and Sunnat “tunies” she speak of.
INTERMINGLING OF SEXES VICE – The Natural Consequence
A Brother from Pretoria writes:
“I must bring to your notice a most disturbing event which has overtaken our children. Our children today are committing most un-Islamic acts in schools and public places. Any advice given to them is simply laughed off.
“Last week a few Muslim boys and girls at a local Madressa indulged in sexual acts. I am living in the same area and am utterly shocked by the revolting crime committed by Muslim boys and girls. Some quick solution must be found to the escalating evil being committed among our children”.
Our Answer: There is no quick solution. The greatest blame lies squarely on the shoulders of parents who are responsible for the immorality in which the children are groveling. The only solution to the commission of immorality and evil which are assigned the status of “culture” in the material society of today, is shame and modesty (Haya) based on Imaan. No amount of advice other than true fear of Allah and concern for the Aakhirah will be able to contain the bestiality of man. It is only “natural” and logical and reasonable that the children should laugh off the pious advice and Naseehat which they regard as a norm of orthodoxy.
What else could be expected from children whose shame and Imaan have been plundered at the behest of their parents? Do parents think that schools and universities with their emphasis on nudity and liberalism are bastions of Haya and chastity? Do parents think that institutions like schools and universities which instruct girls to fling their arms and rise their legs in the air displaying their modesty and exhibiting their privacy, are schools which will inculcate manners and decency into their children? Do parents think that their daughters romping with kuffaar boys at school will have any sense of Islamic decency and modesty?
You parents are responsible for the spiritual and moral destruction of your children. Do not bemoan the immoral fate which will slay your children. Do not be perturbed when you find your daughter running off with a kafir. Do not shed tears when you hear of your daughter’s illegitimate pregnancy. You are the cause and you will be punished by Allah Ta’ala for bringing spiritual ruin onto your children by throwing them into the schools of immorality and kufr.
The Aakhirah means nothing to most parents today, Islam and Allah are mere words and remote beliefs to you. Your attention is rivetted to material gain and worldly prosperity, hence you aspire to school your children in Western and kuffaar ethics and culture, no matter the spiritual destruction which follow in the wake of kuffaar schooling. You feel enamoured by the high marks your child attains at school. You are proud of a kafir degree conferred on your daughter at the university of the kuffaar. But, you are not concerned of the rape of your daughter’s chastity. You are not concerned of the elimination of the Haya which Allah Ta’ala has bestowed on your child. You are not concerned about the Reckoning which Allah Ta’ala will demand from you. That is because you are ignorant of the Deen.
Brother! Forget it! There is no solution. The drift into degeneration and spiritual and moral degradation must necessarily ensue in the wake of the immorality in which our children are being schooled at the institutions of the kuffaar.
THE ACTUAL AIM UNDERLINING THE DIVINE RESTRICTIONS AND PROHIBITIONS OF HIJAAB IS TOTAL CONCEALMENT OF WOMEN – THAT THEY DO NOT EMERGE FROM THEIR HOMES. THE MAIN DUTY OF WOMEN IS TO ENGAGE IN THEIR DOMESTIC AFFAIRS. THUS, TRUE AND ORIGINAL HIJAAB DIRECTED BY THE SHARIAH IS HIJAAB BIL BUYOOT (CONCEALMENT WITHIN HOMES). (Hakimul Ummah Hadhrat Maulana Ashraf Ali Thaanvi (Rahmatullah alayh)
HIJAAB FOR SOME MAHAAREEM
“Uqbah narrates from Aamir (radhiyallahu anhu) who said that Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said: “Beware of entry upon women (i.e. sitting in their company or meeting with them.)” Someone asked: “O Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam)! How do you consider ‘al-hamw?” Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said: ‘AL-HAMW’ is Maut (Death).’ “(Bukhari and Muslim)
This Hadith has been cited from the booklet, PURDAH KI HAQEEQAT (The Reality of Purdah) by Hakimul Ummat Maulana Ashraf Ali Thaanvi (Rahmatullah alayh) Translating the word ‘al-hamw’, Hadhrat Maulana Ashraf Ali Thaanvi says: “The husband’s brother or father etc.”
The Arabic dictionaries translate ‘al-hamw’ as: Father-in-law, brother-in-law, male relation of one’s husband.
Modernists and even some Molvis who are not favourably disposed to the Islamic rules of Hijaab have taken umbrage on account of the father-in-law being included in the scope of the word ‘al-hamw’. The views and rulings of the illustrious Fuqaha and our Akaabir Ulama are adequate interpretation of this word and its meaning. The views of modernists and unqualified persons have no validity in the Shariah.
The modernists reject the interpretation of the authorities of the Shariah on the basis of marriage not being valid with the father-in-law. Since marriage is not valid with the father-in-law, it is argued that all purdah/hijaab restrictions between a man and his daughter-in-law fall away. But this argument is palpably baseless and devoid of Shar’i substance.
MEANING OF HIJAAB
Many people understand Hijaab to be confined to wearing of a veil to conceal the face. But this is a misunderstanding. The Niqaab (facecovering) is simply an item of Hijaab. Hijaab is not restricted to the niqaab. Thus, when it is said that there should be hijaab between a man and his daughter-in-law, it does not necessarily mean that she has to appear in his presence with her face concealed by a niqaab, although circumstances may even render the niqaab also obligatory for even the father-in-law.
It should be well-remembered that if a man’s son had not married a certain woman, it would have been lawful for his father to have married the woman. Marriage to one’s daughter-in-law is prohibited on account of her marriage to the man’s son. But at one stage, marriage with her was permissible. This is sufficient evidence to indicate that in relation to her father-in-law she is mahl-e-shahwat (a woman of desire, i.e. sexual appeal and desire). In view of the element of sexual lust, the shariah rules that if a man touches or fondles his daughter-in-law with sexual desire, her marriage to his son is irrevocable annulled. Never again can she live with her husband.
Since marriage with her was lawful at one stage, common-sense advocates caution – that the man should not be too free nor in privacy with his daughter-in-law, nor see her in any condition which may excite passion in him. The consequences of such a development are exceptionally grave. Numerous marriages have broken down and ended in misery and annulment on account of such moral dismeanours between men and their daughters-in-law. Those who deal with the social affairs of the community are well-informed regarding such matters.
THE QUR’AANIC AAYAT
Another ‘proof’ which the modernists and short-sighted learned men tender in their bid to negate Hijaab for the father-in-law is the Qura’anic Aayat which prohibits marriage with the daughter-in-law. But this Aayat prohibit marriage. It does not prohibit hijaab. It does not negate hijaab for the father-in-law. Prohibition of marriage cannot be construed as prohibition of hijaab. A man may not marry his sister-in-law while her sister is still in his nikah. While marriage is not valid in this case, it does not follow that Purdah for the sister-in-law is relaxed. Similarly, a man may not marry his wife’s aunt while her niece is still in his nikah. This does not mean that he need not maintain Hijaab for his wife’s aunt.
THE DETERMINATION FOR HIJAAB
The factor of shahwat (sexual desire) is the basis for Hijaab. Wherever there exists shahwat, hijaab becomes incumbent even if the persons happen to be father and blood-daughter. A girl who has been sexually molested by her own father or if he had made any such advances on her, will have to incumbently adopt hijaab for him. She will have to wear niqaab and conceal her face from even her father. She may not be alone with him in view of his immoral conduct. Similarly, a woman will have to maintain hijaab for her own brother who is guilty of misconduct towards her. Such cases are not isolated, especially in these times of corruption and immorality.
The following ruling is stated in Ahkaamul Purdah:
“In view of the fasaad (corruption) of the age, the Ulama equated certain mahrams with non-mahrams on the grounds of caution, e.g. father-inlaw, the son-in-law of a young woman, a woman’s step-son, a man’s stepmother, milk brother etc. those of experience are aware of the fitnah (of immorality) lurking in such relationships.”
Hadhrat Maulana Ashraf Ali (Rahmatullah alayh) says his Bayaanul Qur’aan:
“However, in view of the fitnah of the times, some Fuqaha have prohibited privacy with Musaaharah and Radha.”
Musaaharah refer to in-laws. Radhaa refers to relationships created by breast-feeding.
“To be alone with a mahram is permissible except with a Radhaai’ sister and a young mother-in-law.”
Although marriage with one’s milk-sister and young (or old) mother-in-law is haraam, hijaab is necessary.
“If the mother-in-law is young and the neighbours fear fitnah between them (i.e. a man whose wife has died and his mother-in-law) they have the right of preventing her from (living) with him.”
In Azeezul Fataawa it is mentioned: “…But in places of fitnah and when there is fear of fitnah (sexual misconduct) the Fuqaha have ordered the adoption of purdah for even mahaareem, as is mentioned in Durr-e-Mukhtaar.”
Mahaareem are such persons with whom marriage is not valid.
Imdaadul Mufteen says: “The basis of the mas’alah of Hijaab is fitnah. Precaution (in regard to the institution of Hijaab) is proportionate with the element of finah.”
To close the avenue of fitnah (immoral conduct), the Shariah even cancels the right of custody of a minor girl, which certain relatives have. In certain cases, the blood-brothers of a minor girl have the right of custody of her if her parents have died. In some cases, this right devolves to her paternal uncles. However, the Shariah rules:
“If the brothers and paternal uncles are not trustworthy regarding the person of the girl or regarding her wealth, she shall not be assigned to them.” (Shaami)
In these times of moral degeneration when Muslims have largely adopted the libertine culture of the western kuffaar, the rulings of the Fuqaha regarding hijaab for the father-in-law and other relatives of a similar category have greater emphasis. In view of the preponderance of fisq and fujoor and weakness in the Imaan of people, and of sexual misconduct between men and their daughter-in-laws, men and their young stepmothers, men and their step-daughters etc., it is necessary that extreme caution be practiced. Women should not be in privacy with their fathersin-laws. They should maintain a respectable distance from them and not be free with them. Those who cast caution overboard and ignore the ruling of the authorities of the Shariah expose themselves to the snares of shaitaan and the nafs.
While the Shariah allows a woman to travel with a mahram (a male relative with whom marriage is not permissible), there are exceptions to this rule. If the mahram is not a pious and a conscientious person, a woman may not go on a journey in his company even if he happens to be her father or brother or son.
The purpose of a mahram is to ensure that the honour and Purdah of the woman are protected. If a mahram is to ensure that the honour and Purdah of the woman are protected. If a mahram is unable to fulfill this function or if he lacks sufficient piety or understanding of the incumbency of Hijaab, a woman may not travel with him. In reply to a question the following answer appears in Fataawa Rahimiyya:
“… The condition of the (the permissibility) of travelling with a mahram is that there should be no fear of fitnah (i.e. misconduct from the mahram). The mahram should be pious and steadfast on the Shariah. He should not be a faasiq. According to the Shariah it is not permissible (for a woman) to travel with a careless mahram. (citing from Shaami, Fataaqa Rahimiyya continues) : ‘And neither a faasiq (i.e. it is not permissible for a woman to travel with a faasiq mahram). This includes her husband and (any) mahram.”
Shaami states: “… On account of not safeguarding her. The fassiq is one who lacks honour. It is the same even if he happens to be the husband.”
Since the fassiq mahram will not execute the function of safeguarding the woman’s honour and hijaab as imposed by the Shariah, travelling with him is not permissible. Thus, on account of the fisq of a mahram, a woman is not allowed by the Shariah to go on a journey with such a mahram.
A father-in-law too is not an adequate mahram for a woman going for Hajj or on any other journey. Even if the father-in-law is not a faasiq, the element of shahwat is a fitnah. A woman may therefore not go in the company or her father-in-law on a journey.
CALAMITY OF DISCARDING HIJAAB
Shar’i purdah is based on the principle, the introduction to haraam is also haraam as well as on the principle of closing the avenue of vice and immorality. Abandonment of purdah leads to involvement in the promiscuous mingling of sexes, the immoral consequences of which are too well-known to require any elaboration. Everyone is aware of the vice and immorality rampant in the western world. The physical and spiritual fibre of mankind are laid to utter waste and ruin by the debilitating and disastrous effects of sexual misconduct arising in the wake of promiscuity.
The part of the human body which, according to the Shari’ah, has to be compulsorily concealed is called aurah. After a person accepts imaan, the very first practical injunction applicable, is concealment of the aurah. This was an incumbent duty from the very inception of creation. In every Shari’ah from Adam (alayhis salaam) to Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) covering the aurah was fardh (compulsory). Even for an age after the inception of the revolution of libertinism and Satanism in the western world, even non-Muslims were observing greater purdah and modesty in attire than westernized Muslims of the present age in which Zina dominates in varying degrees.
While the actual act of fornication is still frowned on by westernized Muslims, zina of the eyes, zina of the ears, zina of the hands and zina of the heart are no longer regarded as acts of vice and immorality. The restrictions of the Shari’ah in this sphere are not only ignored, but are mocked and openly rejected despite the Qur’aanic and Hadith emphasis on hijaab and segregation of the sexes.
Hijaab (purdah) is a Divine imposition calculated for the maintenance of Islamic human fibre. This fibre remains intact and develops only with spiritual purity. Without Hijaab spiritual purity and progress are impossible – unattainable goals. In this regard, the Qur’aan Majeed declares:
”O Wives of the Nabi! You are not like any other women. If you fear, then do not speak in alluring tones (with men), for he in whose heart there is the disease (of lust) will desire. And speak intelligently (Aayat 32 Surah Ahzaab)
“And remain resolutely in your homes and do not make a display (of yourselves) like the display of jaahiliyyah. Establish Salaat, pay Zakaat and obey Allah and His Rasul. Verily (by these injunctions) Allah only intends to eliminate from you filth (immorality), O people of the House! And He intends to thoroughly purify you.” (Aayat 33 Surah Ahzaab)
Thus spiritual and moral purification are the goals of Hijaab. When the Qur’aanic law of Hijaab is abandoned, rijz (filth/immorality) becomes the order of the day. The catastrophic consequences of immorality – moral filth (rijz) – are too glaring and prevalent to require any elucidation. Every intelligent person will acknowledge that the physical diseases stemming from promiscuity and the ascendance of vices pertaining to sexual misconduct are the direct product of hijaab abandonment.
Notwithstanding the piety and holiness of Rasulullah’s (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) household, the Qur’an commands:
“When they (men) ask you for something, they (men) should ask you from behind a screen.” (Aayat 54 Surah Ahzaab)
Even the Holy Wives of Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) were ordered to remain within the confines of their homes within the ambit of Hijaab. When there was a need for a Sahaabi to enquire about anything from the Wives of Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam), he had to do so from behind a screen. Yet Muslims of this age despise and even mock the Qur’aanic injunction of the segregation of sexes.
In this very same Aayat (No. 54 of Surah Ahzaab) Allah Ta’ala states the reason for Hijaab:
This (i.e. speaking from behind a screen) is purer for their (i.e. the Sahaabah’s) hearts and your heart (i.e. the hearts of the Holy Wives.)”
Now who can claim greater Taqwa and purity of heart than the Sahaabah and the Holy Wives of Nabi (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam)? When purdah was obligatory in that noblest age on men and women of the highest degree of Taqwa and holiness, what is the intelligence constrained to uphold in this regard in this age of total corruption and impiety?
ULAMA AND PURDAH
Even Ulama nowadays are guilty of having discarded Hijaab. Some even deliberately mislead the public by their presentation of an extremely liberal conception of purdah. Women are enticed into the public by a variety of ruses and stratagems which these Ulama fail to understand are the effects of shaitaani deception. Some Molvis invite women to participate in congregational Thikr sessions. By this ruse women abandon their homes in conflict with the Qur’aanic Aayat: “Remain resolutely in your homes…” (Qur’aan), to participate in Thikr programmes never designed or even intended for them by Islam.
Other Molvis again urge women to abandon their homes to attend Taraaweeh Salaat in the Musjid or in some Hall although they are fully cognisant of the Shar’i ban of female emergence from the home. From the very age of the Sahaabah women were prevented from attending the Musjid for even the Fardh Salaat. But they satanically lure women outside into the streets and public venues in direct violation of Rasulullah’s (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) exhortation:
“The best Salaat of a women is her Salaat in the darkest recess of her home.”
Others again sever the home-ties of girls by luring them into girls Madrassahs – a system Islam has never designed for females. In diametric opposition to: “Remain resolutely in your homes…” (Qur’aan), girls are induced to abandon their homes.
Some Ulama while propagating a lukewarm idea of purdah, excise Hijaab for female relatives from the Islamic conception of purdah. They mingle and speak freely with their sister-in-law, female cousins and other females belonging to the ghair mahram category inspite of Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) rejoinder: “The brother-in-law is maut (death).” Thus purdah in this domain has greater application and should be strictly observed. However, Ulama are observed to act in direct opposition of this Shar’i emphasis.
When the Ulama themselves are grossly and audaciously guilty of the perpetration of purdah violations, what can be expected of the general laity? It is appropriate to remind them that Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said: “When a woman emerges from her home shaitaan lies in ambush for her.”
Thus, whether her emergence from her home is for Salaat, Thikr, Tableegh or any other purpose, shaitaan stalks her, ready to entrap men into evil by his devious manipulation of the women in the street. How have our Molvis failed to grasp this point implied by Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam)? Any act or activity dependent on the emergence of females is cursed and in violation of Islam’s code of purdah, except when such emergence is a Shar’i injunction, e.g. Haj.
Some Ahaadith on Purdah:
1. “When a woman applies perfume and passes by a gathering of men, she is like this and that (i.e. like an adulteress).”
2. “The gaze (at ghair mahrams) is a poisonous arrow among the arrows of Iblees. He who restrains it (his straying gaze) for My fear, I shall exchange it for such solid Imaan, the sweetness of which he will experience in his heart,”
3. “A Dayyooth will not enter Jannat.” The Sahaabah asked “Who is a dayyooth?” Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said: “A man who does not care who (i.e. men) visits his wife.”
4. “Every eye is a fornicator.”
5. “The zina of the hand is to touch (a ghair mahram)”
6. “It is better that a steel rod be plunged into your head than you touch a woman who is not lawful for you.”
7. “When a man is alone with a women, the third one present is Shaitaan.”
8. “Beware of visiting women (who are unlawful for you).”
9. “Women should not speak with men except with a mahram.”
10. “It is not lawful for a woman who believes in Allah and the last Day TO ALLOW ANYONE ENTRY INTO HER husband’s home except with his permission. She should not go out of the house against his wishes, nor should she obey anyone in this regard.”
11. “Women may not emerge from their homes except when compelled to (by circumstances).”
RASULULLAH (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) AND PURDAH
In a battle a Muslim valiantly fighting for the cause of Islam, was martyred. When Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) who was present in the battle, was informed of this particular Sahaabi’s martyrdom, he went to view the slain soldier of Islam. On seeing the body of the martyred Sahaabi, Nabi-e-Kareem (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) turned away his face and looked in another direction. After a while other Sahaabah enquired of the reason for his action of Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam). Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) informed them that as he approached the martyr he saw a damsel from Jannat, the martyred Sahaabi’s heavenly wife, wiping the dust and sand from the face of the martyr. Thus, in obedience to Islam’s law of Hijaab, Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) turned his face away.
This episode is an adequate illustration of the significance and importance of observing the Shariah’s law of Purdah.
DOCTORS AND PATIENTS AND TRANSGRESSION
It has become fashionable in our times for Muslims to employ male doctors instead of females on occasions of child-birth. This practice in terms of the Shariah is immoral. The code of Islamic morality and modesty is very lofty. Hayaa (shame and modesty) is a part or branch of Imaan, said Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam). Practices which are nugatory of hayaa are not tolerated by the Shariah. Childbirth is no new event. Islam has its rules for this occasion as well and such rules were adhered to since the very beginning of Islam. There is, therefore, no need for Muslims to depart from the lawful Islamic way and adopt the styles and methods of the kuffaar.
According to the Shariah, the entire body of a woman is Satr which should compulsorily be concealed from all ghair mahaareem males and from different classes of people in varying degrees of concealment which shall be explained further on in this article, Insha’Allah. It is not permissible for a woman to expose her satr even in the presence of women. This, then will indicate the high degree of prohibition for a woman to expose her satr to males unnecessarily. And, in the vast majority of cases they are guilty of exposing themselves unnecessarily to male doctors because the engagement of male doctors in cases of childbirth is unnecessary in most cases.
Regarding the satr, there are various degrees of prohibition applicable to different classes of people (Satr is that part of the body which has to be compulsorily covered). The further the class of people is from one, the severer will be the degree of prohibition. Where there is an absolute need to reveal the satr, the classes of persons who are allowed to view the satr of Muslim women are listed hereunder in order of priority. First category: A Muslim woman Second category: A Non-Muslim woman
Third category: A Muslim male Fourth category: A Non-Muslim male.
Thus, according to the Shariah, when the need arises for childbirth or any other occasion which necessitates the exposure of a Muslim woman’s satr, it will be obligatory to firstly enlist the service of a Muslim mid-wife or Muslim female doctor. If a woman in this class is not available, it will be necessary to engage a non-Muslim female. If a non-Muslim female is not available, the service of Muslim male will be enlisted. If even a Muslim male doctor is unavailable, then only as a last resort will a non-Muslim male doctor be engaged. Where the services of one from a higher class are available, it will not be permissible to engage one from a lower category. But, the deplorable situation is to bypass the first three categories and go direct to the last category, viz., kuffaar male doctors. This is a major sin from which Muslims should abstain. From the Islamic point of view it is most shameless and immoral to engage a non-Muslim male doctor at the very first instance, before even attempting to obtain the service of a Muslim female. This attitude mirrors the abject indifference which Muslims nowadays display towards the Laws of Allah Ta’ala.
TRANSGRESSION OF PURDAH
Commenting on the immoral practice of male doctors unnecessarily attending to female patients, Hakimul Ummat Maulana Ashraf Ali Thaanvi (Rahmatullah alayh) said:
“Doctors when attending to female patients, are guilty of gross negligence. They audaciously view even the parts of the female body which do not fall within their scope of examination. An absolute need will render permissible the viewing of only the affected parts.”
Islam orders that Muslim women observe Purdah (Hijaab) for even non-Muslim females. In this regard the Shariah’s law is strict. The non-Muslim woman falls in the same category as a man in relation to the Islamic law of Hijaab. Thus, the Muslim woman has compulsorily to cover her entire body in the presence of a non-Muslim woman. It is not permissible for a Muslim woman to expose even her hair in the presence of a non-Muslim woman.
THE CORRECT WAY OF DRESSING FOR MUSLIM WOMEN
[By a Sister from Kenya]
At present we are living in an age of electronics and computers. Surrounding us is the very best of technology, which is coming from the Western side of the world. Everyone is struggling to catch up with the latest developments around the globe and that is why we have to go to schools and colleges to understand and learn them. Unfortunately learning the Western culture is also a part of the courses we take. Since almost the entire West in on Muslim, its way of life and our way of life are poles apart. Now the Muslim is torn between two cultures and doesn’t know which way to follow. He is faced with many questions and one of the most debated question among Muslims today is: “How should a Muslim lady dress?”
The non-Muslims encourage the exposure and exhibition of the female body regarding it as a great art. Public displays of female bodies in Magazines like Vogue are considered artistic developments. Careers like modeling, acting, singing and dancing are shortcuts for women to become famous and rich. They design clothes for fashion which hint at the femininity of the lady and emphasize her figure. In other words a non-Muslim lady should be ‘dressed to attract and entice the opposite sex’ at all times. Perfume and make-up should be her constant companions. She is adorned to attract the attention of the people around her so that she can be noticed, admired and desired.
Islam commands it’s women to cover themselves completely so that they do not attract any attention. The Qur’aan states in Surah Ahzab verse 59 “Oh! Nabi! Say to the believing ladies to draw over them their outer garments (or cloaks) so that they be recognized and not molested”. Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) says in a Sahih Hadith: “Shame is a branch of Imaan”. Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) has said that a lady who dresses and perfumes herself with the intention of creating interest in men is according to the Shariah an adulteress and she will be punished on the day of judgment for committing adultery or Zina. All the women-folk of Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) used to put on these outer cloaks which is called a Burqah or Buibui or Jilbaab. The Qur’aanic verse and Ahaadith of Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) apply to all Muslims regardless of the generation they are born in, not only to the time of Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam). The outer-cloak is of dull colour and extremely loose so that the Muslim lady is fully covered from head to toe and does not draw any attention to her femininity when she is outdoors. However she can dress well for her husband indoors.
The kuffaar say that Islam has enslaved its women by forcing them to stay in their homes and cover themselves when they come out. How very wrong they are! What have the kuffaar given their women: – prizes for displaying and exposing their bodies at the risk of rape and molestation, insecurity of losing their husbands to beautiful mistresses, constant battle with nature to look young and pretty enough to keep her man hooked to her? On the contrary Islam elevates its women to the peak of respect and saves women from disgrace and humiliation, giving them a chance to be treated like honourable human beings and not mere sex object for the lustful desires of bestial miscreants.
No doubt we should adopt from the kuffaar beneficial technology but why should we be led into believing that their culture is better than ours because it definitely is not! So when the kuffaar and the unfortunate misled Muslims laugh at the covered Muslim ladies calling them backward and fanatical, we can educate them on the advantages in covering ourselves. Not only will we gain true satisfaction and peace of heart by following the truth but we will also gain the pleasure of our Rabb Who in turn will reward us very handsomely for not forgetting the teachings of Islam even 15 centuries after Rasulullah’s (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) departure.
All the innocent Muslims who have strayed from the commands of Islam should know that the kuffaar also lose their respect for us when they see us abandoning our culture and fumbling like lost sheep trying hard to make ourselves at home in their alien and immoral society. Allah says in Surah Asr: “By the oath of time! Man is in loss, except those who believe…” Just when will we start believing and prevent ourselves from incurring more loss and ruin? Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam)has said: “He who imitates a nation will be raised with them on the day of judgement”. How many of us want to be raised with the kuffaar and be thrown into the depths of hell with them?
I hope with this article Muslim ladies will be able to decide for themselves what sort of life they want in this world and how they want to be treated on the Day of Judgement.
THE BEST TREASURE
The most valuable treasure on earth is a virtuous wife. (Hadith)
WOMEN OF PIETY
I take oath by Allah and say: Give women Deeni education and then see their superiority. You will then witness in them intelligence, understanding and even accomplishment in such worldly affairs which pertain to them. Women who possess degrees of B.A. and M.A. cannot vie in understanding and intelligence with women who have acquired Deeni knowledge. Yes, in deception and schemes the Western educated woman may be ahead. But, remember, that words of intelligence will emanate from only women of piety. – (Hadhrat Masihullah-Rahmatullah alayh)
THE ‘MALE’ WOMAN
Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) cursed the women who imitate males – (Mishkaat)
EVILS OF IMITATION
– Behaving like a man can sometimes land you in trouble especially if you are a woman. This is clearly shown in an article in this month’s Medical Journal. – (Evening Post)
– All kinds of problems are arising, physical and psychological – not to mention the sociological ones like the soaring female crime rate, use of bad language and blatant use of sexuality.
– Women are drinking more, smoking more and the graffiti in women’s toilets is as bad as it ever was in the men’s.
– Along with all this, women are suffering more and more from male diseases such as heart attack, lung cancer and emphysema.
According to the article in the Medical journal these evil are the consequences of the “liberation” of women.
It’s all to do with moving into the men’s world and over-running the traditional sexual barricades, says the journal”. – ( Evening Post)
– At the bottom of it all is the pill, which liberated women in a positively practical way and following hard along this path, came women’s Lib, which sought to capitalize on the new liberation. – (Evening Post)
The article asks: “What’s been the result?” … a transformation which necessitated abandoning the traditional female role of gentleness, submissiveness and dependence. Men confronted by the transformation have become less dominant”. – (Medical Journal)
THE DISEASE OF LIBERALISM
The liberalism and immorality of kuffar schools are fast overtaking the Muslim community of this country. The disease of shamelessness which is a consequence of the annihilation of Imaanic Haya (Shame and modesty) has become an accepted norm of respectability to many Muslims. Practices which Nabi (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) described as “zina” (fornication) are nowadays accepted as part and parcel of our society integrated into the civilization of the kuffar. And, worst of all is the complacency and acquiescence of those who are supposed to be the standard bearers of Amr bil ma’ruf nahy anil munkar. Zina-exhibition has become so much an accepted practice that even Ulama are turning a blind eye and maintain silence in the face of the satanic onslaught of modernism.
“O Nabi! Tell your wives, your daughters and the women of the Believers to draw over them their outer garments (thus concealing their bodies). That is the least (sign) of their recognition so that they may not be molested (by hooligans and immoral men)”. – (Qur’an, Surah Ahzaab)
“And remain within your homes and make not an exhibition (of yourselves) like the exhibitions (of the women) of the times of ignorance” – (Qur’aan, Surah Ahzaab)
Regarding women on the streets, the Medical Journal says:
“One of the major problems created by the lack of respect men now have for women, by their presence on the streets going to and returning from work and by their propensity to dress provocatively has been the rising incidence of rape”.
The established result of female emergence onto the streets in contradiction of the Qur’aanic command to “remain within your homes” and female exhibition in contradiction of the Qur’aanic command, “make not an exhibition”, is rape and molestation.
OLD MEN AND PURDAH
Purdah for an old man must be exercised to a greater degree. There is a need to be more careful because as his other physical powers and abilities are weakened so too is his ability to resist carnal lust. He is also stirred by lust and passion. He does not regard his inclination (towards females) as the dictate of carnal lust. He stirs his carnal lust by reflection. A young man after climax obtains carnal gratification whereas the old man does not attain sexual gratification. His inclination, therefore, towards females remains strong (despite his incapacity). He, therefore, continuously ruminates to obtain some satisfaction. This is the “zina” (fornication) of the heart which the Hadith speaks about. – [Hakimul Ummat Hadhrat Maulana Taanvi (Rahmatullah alayh]