Posts Tagged ‘Islamic feminism’

yes, a refutation to the argument will definitely be written (October 20 2010)

These are the words contained in a comment posted by the writer of said article. Bold statements,requiring an even bolder physical act; preparing,researching and penning the actual promised refutation.

Somehow it is not surprising at all that so many unqualified individuals feel bold enough to loudly announce their intentions to pen scholarly refutations. Where, pray tell are these promised literary works? How do you conveniently present half-truths,blatant lies,sloppy academic work,terribly “researched”  articles and then merely fade away into thin air when the going gets too tough?

To the reader : Please do note the date of the promised refutation and the publication date of our post today.

We have no problem with refutations being penned nor with scholarly articles being written.We have no problem with differing views.We do not claim that one person is always right.We do not believe that any non-Nabi is ma’soom.

Our problems:

1. We have a problem with unqualified individuals speaking on matters of Shariah.

2. Promises of academic refutations not being fulfilled.These promises are usually made in the heat of the moment so “save face” only to be conveniently forgotten later on.

3. We have a problem with blatant lies and half-truths being put forward as academic proof in matters of Shariah.

4. We have a problem when an individual reads a few blogs,googles a few proofs or spends a few years at campus and then considers his/herself worthy of presenting opinions and passing rulings on matters of Shariah.


NB: Google,Wikipedia,the Net and Campus do not make you a qualified scholar

Original article with promise of refutation:

The contentious issue of women attending the Eid Salaah has been plaguing some Muslims in South Africa of late. It is imperative that the sources of Fiqh be brought to the attention of the layman or laywoman in this case. There are many groups who would have you believe that it is the Indo-Pak Muslim clerical society who would like to keep you backward and prefer you to be brainwashed. Upon closer inspection however, the notion of brainwashing is rooted very firmly within these “modern-day” organisations.

The following proofs regarding the issue of women attending the Masjid aims to shed light on the subject. Please note that these are not my views but the views taken from Qur’aan, Ahadeeth, Sahaabah radhiAllahu anhum and illustrious Fuqahaa.

The Qur’aan

“O Nabi! Say to your wives, your daughters and the women of the Mu’mineen to hang over themselves their jalaabeeb.” (Al Ahzab: 59)

Allah Ta’ala says:”And, remain inside your homes and do not make a display like the exhibition of the times of jaahiliyyah.” (Al Ahzab:33)


Umm ‘Atiyyah (may Allah be pleased with her) said: The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) commanded us to bring them (women) out on (Eid) al-Fitr and (Eid) al-Adha, and to bring out adolescent girls, menstruating women and virgins, but the menstruating women were to stay away from the prayer, but were to witness goodness and the gathering of the Muslims. I said: “O Messenger of Allah, what if one of us does not have a jilbaab?” He said: “Let her sister lend her a jilbab.”

The first hadeeth clearly states the permissibility of women attending the Eid salaah but we must remember the conditions which were present at the time of Nabi sallAllahu alaihi wa sallam during this time. The conditions follow:

1st Condition: Women were to attend shabbily dressed or unattractive. Hadhrat Abu Hurairah (radhiallahu anhu) narrates that Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said: ” …………. but, they should emerge while they are shabbily dressed.” (Abu Dawood)

2nd Condition: Intermingling was prohibited even outside the Musjid, in a narration in Abu Dawood, the Sahaabi, Abu Usaid Ansaari (radhiAllahu anhu) says that once outside the Musjid men and women had mixed. Nabi (sallAllahu alaihi wa sallam) then said:”(O Women!) Move back! Verily, it is not permissible for you to spread in the road. The edges of the road are compulsory on you.”

The Sahaabi narrating this Hadith says: “As a result the women would walk so close to the sides that their clothing would brush against the walls (of the houses).”

3rd Condition: Perfume was forbidden. Women who came to Musjid in the early days were not permitted to apply perfume. In this regard Rasulullah (sallAllahu alaihi wa sallam) said:”Any woman who applies perfume and passes by a gathering is like an adultress.” (Tirmizi)

It is naïve to assume that the onus is on the person to ensure that the conditions for attending Eid salaah are met. During the time of the Sahaabah radhiAllahu anhum, they had taken it upon themselves to ensure that the women were PROTECTED. They were not discriminating against women, they were not being sexist, misogynists etc. Aisha radhiAllahu anha had said so herself that women would have been prevented from the Masjid if Nabi SallAllahu alaihi wa sallam were to see what women had introduced during her time.

So how do these Muslim feminists justify Aisha radhiAllahu anha’s opinion? Or do they see fit to disregard the view of the great Mother of the Believers? The wife of Nabi sallAllahu alaihi wa sallam?Or is it because this view does not tie in to their perfect world of female liberation? Does this view not tie in to the view of their illustrious jurists like Sheikh Albani, ibn Uthaymeen, bin Baz, ibn Jibreen etc.? They very often cite Aisha radhiAllahu anha when it comes to her willingness to learn and seek knowledge and also when the sahaabah radhiAllahu ahum would go to her in matters pertaining to Fiqh but how little credibility is afforded to her in this matter.

Rasulullah (sallAllahu alaihi wa sallam), when giving the initial permission for women to attend the Masjid, he stated what was indeed BEST for them.Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam} said:”Do not prevent your womenfolk from the Musjid, BUT THEIR HOMES ARE BEST FOR THEM.” (Sahih Muslim)

In spite of the fact that it has been narrated from Nabi sallAllahu alaihi wa sallam, “Do not stop women from the masjid and their houses are best for them.” This is a clear proof that houses are better for women than the masjid and this encompasses salaah and itikaf and other acts of worship. (Awjazul Masaalik vol 5 pg 462)

Imaam Ahmad has mentioned the wife of Abu Humayd as Saaidi said: “O Rasulullah, I love to read salaah with you.” He said: “I know that you love to read salaah with me and your salaah in the recess of your home is better than your salaah in an open room and your salaah in a room is better than salaah in any other part of your house and your salaah in your house is better than your salaah in the Masjid of your people and your salaah in the masjid of your people is better than salaah in my masjid.”

Hadhrat Abdullah Ibn Mas’ud (radhiallahu anhu) narrates that Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said;”The Salaat of a woman in her bedroom is better than her Salaat in (another) room (of her house), and her Salaat in the innermost recess of her home is better than her Salaat in her room.” (Abu Dawood)

The above ahadeeth confirm that the best place for woman’s salaah is in the innermost recesses of HER HOME. This is the answer to the following question: “Do you know that Musjid al Nabbawi and Musjid al Haraam are MOSQUES- so one should ask these scholars if the home is best for the women, should muslim women pray all their salaat in the hotel rooms when on Umrah as they have said that women must not attend the mosques?”

What we should in fact be asking is, when the above hadith was said by Rasulullah sallAllahu alaihi wa sallam himself, did he not know about the two Masaajid? Was he unaware of the fact that women could attend both these places? And so, despite being aware of the Masaajid in question, Nabi SallAllahu alaihi wa Sallam still made a point of saying that the home is the best place for a woman’s salaah.

Sahaabah radhiAllahu anhum

Amr Shaibaani narrates that he saw Hadhrat Abdullah Bin Mas’ud (radhiallahu anhu) expelling women from the Musjid on the Day of Juma’.(Majmauz Zawaaid)

Aatikah (radhiallahu anha), the wife of Hadhrat Umar (radhiallahu anhu), explaining her reason for having discontinued her practice of attending the Musjid said: “We used to come out when people were yet people.” (LaamiudDuraari

Arabi in his Sharhut Tirmizi states:”Aishah (radhiallahu anha) and Ibn Mas’ud (radhiallahu anhu} are of the opinion that women should be prevented from the Musjids and that they should necessarily cling to the dark corners of their home (when performing Salaat).”

“Yahya Ibn Saeed narrates from Umrah Binti Abdur Rahman that Aishah (radhiallahu anha) said: ‘If Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) had observed that which women have now introduced (i.e. after the demise of Rasulullah), he would most certainly have prevented them from attending the Musjid just as the women of Bani Israeel were prevented.”Yahya enquired: ‘What, were the women of Bani Israeel prevented from the Musaajid?’Umrah replied. ‘Yes.’ When Ameerul Mu’mineen Hadhrat Umar (radhiallahu anhu) finally enacted the prohibition to prevent women from going to the Musjid, they …complained to Aishah (radhiallahu anha). Answering their complaint, Hadhrat Aishah (radhiallahu anha) said: “If Nabi (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) had known what Umar now knows (of the condition of women), he would not have granted you permission to emerge (i.e. to leave your homes and come to the Musjid for Salaat).” (Jaamiur Rumooz)

Arabi in his Sharhut Tirmizi says:

“Sufyaan Thauri said: ‘It is forbidden for women to emerge from their homes. Ibn Mas’ud (radhiallahuanhu) said that a woman is an object of concealment and when she emerges shaitaan lays in wait (to create fitnah). Imam Abu Hanifah and Ibn Mubarak also stated this .”

Amr Shaibaani narrates that he saw Hadhrat Abdullah Bin Mas’ud (radhiallahu anhu) expelling women from the Musjid on the Day of Juma’.(Majmauz Zawaaid)


Abu Hanifa has mentioned the salaah area of her home is better than the mosque of her locality. (Bada’ius Sanaa’i vol2 pg 381)

The Hanafi and Maaliki jurists have agreed there is no permission for young women for Jumu’ah and the Eid salaah and/or any other salaah (Al Badaai 1/275, Ash Sharhus Saghir 1/530, Bidayatul Mujtahid 1/211)

Imam Abu Hanifa and his two companions, Imaam Abu Yusuf and Imaam Mohammed state: It is Makrooh for young women to attend Salaah in Jama’ah in totality. Imaam Abu Hanifa has mentioned: An elderly women may attend Fajr, Maghrib and Esha. The Fatawa of the Madhab is that it is reprehensible for women to attend Jama’ah, be it for Eid, for Jumu’ah or a lecture, even if it be for an old lady.

The Maalikiya say: In the event of even the slightest possibility of contravention of shari’ah taking place, it would not be permissible at all for a woman to attend the Masjid. If there is no mischief, her repeated going to the Masjid is highly reprehensible ( Ash Sharhul Kabir 1/335, Ash Sharhul Saghir 1/446)

Imaam Ahmad Bin Hambal and Tibraam record the Hadith of Umme-Humaid Sa’diyah who came to Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) and said:“O Rasulullah! I love to perform Salaat behind you.’ Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) replied:’I am aware of it. But, your Salaat in the innermost recess of your house is better than Salaat in (other places) of your house…”

Ibn Hajar (rahmatullah alayh) says:”The summary of the discussion of Nawawi and Zarkashi is that when intermingling of the sexes prevails whether in the Musjid or on the roads or there is the danger of mischief because of women’s adornment and exhibition of beauty, then it is forbidden for them to come out. It is incumbent on the Imaam or his representative to prevent women from emerging.”(Laamiud Duraari)

Hadhrat Ibrahim Nakhai (rahmatullah alayh) prevented his womenfolk from attending the Musjid. In Nailul Autaar, the following narration appears:”It (females going for the Eid Salaat) is forbidden. This has been narrated by Tirmizi on the authority of Thauri, Ibn Mubaarak. And, this is the view of Imaam Maalik, Abu Yusuf…. Ibn Qudaamah narrated it on the authority of Nakhai and Yahya Ibn Saeed Ansaari. ”

Islam does not require change, it changes us.

It is a common perception amongst non-Muslim folk that Muslim women are an oppressed bunch. It is even more commonly perceived by the Muslim Feminist that Muslim women are oppressed by the laws laid out by the “traditional” scholars of old. The solution to this oppression, as emphasized by many a Muslim feminist, lies in embracing an Islam which is more accepting to women, as the “old” Islam is just not working as well as it should be for a woman.

After all, once upon a time, in a land far, far away, the Muslim woman covered herself as was expected of a practising Muslim woman “of old”. She never intermingled with men, never saw the need to socialise amongst the opposite sex, never left her home unless it was absolutely necessary, never…never…never… Let’s just say she did a lot of “never-ing”.

The Muslim feminist, however, is a force to be reckoned with. She sees no need to stay cooped up in a dusty old house (no sir, that’s what a maid is for), tending to the needs of her children (yes, that would be the nanny), cooking for her husband (well, not always anyway. Who cooks when there’s take-out, right?), praying her salaah at home (What? No women in your Masjid!?! That’s an abomination!) etc. Yes, the Muslim feminist always fights hard to uphold her right to spirituality; the spirituality Islam has afforded her as a woman. It is her religiously-given right (I could not bring myself to say “God-given”, I don’t have the authority).

The same right those “by-the-book” indo/pak scholars had taken away from her, the right they had taken away from so many other helpless Muslim women the world over. They had taken away the Muslim woman’s right to pray, to offer herself to Allah, to submit to Him spiritually, in His house, a house not afforded only to men, but whomsoever proclaimed him/herself a servant of Allah. Or was it? Did these “selfish scholars” really think, really believe they had the right to pull off something so gender-discriminating? Did they not realise the consequences of their “heinous” actions? How could they oppress Muslim women like this and not be answerable? And so began the task of the Muslim feminist.

The Muslim feminist shouts slogans of oppression, of true gender equality and centuries of female repression hidden in the “fatawas” of bearded clergymen under the guise of Islam. It is only under these banners that the Muslim feminist has enshrouded herself under, that she is able to spread her message of “liberation” to the female masses. A voice which stands out, a refreshing song to the Islamically inclined soul, a soul yearning for a closeness to its Creator and a body aching to be freed from the chains holding it to the pillars of Islamic morality.

I chose the phrase “Islamic Morality” because a lot of what is being questioned today by Muslim feminists are issues which affect the morality of Muslim women. It has failed to become about what Islam really is and more about what Islam should be.

When I had first read about the intentions of the Muslim feminist movement in South Africa, I had initially thought that at last, we had a group of strong-willed Islamically-motivated women who were truly prepared to uphold the values and ethos of the true Islamic Woman. Sadly, this has not been so. It is a movement which has not been saved from the ill-intentions of a few to fuel a greater cause, to fuel a greater movement. And it has begun with the women; the mothers of our offspring, the first schools our babies will know; the teachers, the sisters, the aunts, grandmothers and daughters.

The Islamic laws formulated (Most feminists disagree on the principles of formulation) around Muslim women are in place to protect the sanctity of a woman, to protect her modesty; to safeguard her from evil, the very evil which Shaitaan (Satan, the Devil) had vowed to Allah he would create and spread on earth. It is in our best interest to uphold these laws, whether we agree with them or not and whether we practise upon them or not.

My advice to each and every person, male or female, who will read this or who will pass on the message to others is to learn and study true, authentic Islam from the true and authentic scholars. If we dedicate some time to learning about the principles of Islamic Sciences, we might understand the rationale behind certain laws, the wisdom behind the formulation and implementation of these laws and the foresight which the leaders in the respective sciences of Islam held.

Islam does not require change, Islam changes us.