[A+] [A-]

Fatwas Regarding Women

In the Name of Allâh, the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful


Questions of a Miscellaneous Nature

Meaning of the Women Having a Shortcoming in Reasoning and Religion

Question: We always hear the Hadith, "Women have a shortcoming in understanding and religion." Some of the men state it to insult women. We would like you to explain to us the meaning of that Hadith.

Response: The Prophet's words and their explanation is as follows:

" I have seen none having more of a shortcoming in reasoning and religion yet, at the same time, robbing the wisdom of the wisest men than you." They said, "O Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) what is the shortcoming in our reasoning?" He said "Is it not the case that the testimony of two women is equivalent to that of one man" They said, "O Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him), what is the shortcoming in our religion" He said, "Is it not the case that when you have your menses you neither pray or fast?''1

The Prophet (peace be upon him) explained that their shortcoming in reasoning is found in the fact that their memory is weak and that their witness is in need of another woman to corroborate it. Therefore, it is related to non-proficiency in witnessing due to woman's forgetfulness or she may add something in her witnessing. As for the shortcoming in her religion, it is because when they are menstruating or having post-partum bleeding, they neither pray nor fast, and they do not make up their prayers, and this is their shortcoming in the religion. However, they are not to be blamed for that shortcoming. This has been imposed by the Law of Allah. He is the one who laid down such legislation in kindness and ease upon her. This is because if she were to fast while menstruating or post-partum bleeding, this would harm her. It is from the mercy of Allah that she is sanctioned not to fast. As for the prayer, during menses, she is in a situation that keeps her from being purified. It is again from Allah's mercy that He has commanded that they do not pray while they are menstruating as well as during post-partum bleeding. He has also ordered that they do not make up their prayers. This is because if they were ordered to make up their prayers, it would be a hardship upon them. Prayer is repeated five times in a day and night. Menses may last for a number of days, up to seven or eight or more. Post-partum bleeding lasts for forty days. It is from the mercy of Allah and His goodness to them that they are not obliged to perform or make up the prayers of such conditions. However, this does not mean that they have a shortcoming in understanding in everything or that they have a shortcoming in religion in every matter. The Prophet (peace be upon him) made it clear that their shortcoming in understanding is with respect to their non-proficiency and in religion with respect to their not praying or fasting during menstruation or post-partum bleeding. This also does not mean that she is less than men in every matter or that men are superior to her in every aspect. Yes, as a class, men are superior to women in general. This is true for a number of reasons, as Allah has stated,

"Men are the protectors and maintainers of women, because Allah has made the one of them to excel the other, and because they spend [to support them] from their means"

(al-Nisa 34).

However, she may excel him in many matters. How many women are greater than many men with respect to their intelligence, religion and proficiency. It has been narrated from the Prophet (peace be upon him) that women as a species or class are less than men in understanding and religion from the point of view of the matters that the Prophet (peace be upon him) himself explained.

A woman may perform many good deeds and exceed many men in her good deeds, her fear of Allah and her place in the Hereafter. She may concentrate on some matters and her proficiency may be much greater than many men in many issues that concern her and in which she exerted her memory and proficiency. She may be a reference, for example, in Islamic history and many other matters. This is something very clear to anyone who pondered the state of the women during the time of the Prophet (peace be upon him) and afterwards. From this, one knows that her shortcoming does not mean that she cannot be relied upon for narrations. Similarly, if her witness is supported by another woman, it is accepted. There is nothing that prevents her fear o Allah from making her one of the best of the servants of Allah and one of the best women-servants of Allah. This is if she is steadfast in her religion and she is not obliged to fast or pray while menstruating or having post-partum bleeding. If she does not have to pray or make up her prayers that does not necessitate that she has a shortcoming in every matter related to fear and obedience of Allah or her fulfilling of her duties upon her. With respect to her proficiency, she has a specific shortcoming, as the Prophet (peace be upon him) explained, and that does not mean that it can be generalized. A believer may not accuse her of having a shortcoming in everything or a weakness in her faith in every matter. It is a particular shortcoming in her religion and a particular shortcoming in her reasoning that is related to the proficiency of the witness and so forth. One must be fair to her and understand the words of the Prophet (peace be upon him) in the best and most appropriate manner. And Allah knows best.

Shaikh ibn Baz


Footnote

1. Recorded by al-Bukhari and Muslim.--JZ

There is no Harm in Joking as long as it is Truthful

Question: What is the ruling concerning joking? Is it considered useless and vain speech? Note that it does not contain any ridiculing of the religion.

Response: There is no harm in joking by words and anecdotes, if they are truthful and real, especially if it is not done often. The Prophet (peace be upon him) used to joke but he would only speak the truth. If it is with lying, then it is not allowed. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said,

"Woe to the one who speaks and tells a lie in order to make the people laugh at it. Woe to him. Then again, woe to him."

This was recorded by Abu Dawud, al-Tirmidhi and al-Nasal with a good chain.

Shaikh ibn Baz

The Hadith of the Seven is Not in Reference to Men Only

Question: Is the hadith that talks about the seven whom Allah will shade on the Day in which there is no shade except Allah's specific just for men or is it for anyone, such as women, who perform those acts and, therefore, they will receive that reward mentioned in the hadith?

Response: The merits mentioned in the hadith are not specifically for men. In fact, they are general for both men and women. If a young woman grows up in the worship of Allah, she is included among them. Similarly, two women who love each other for the sake of Allah alone are also included. Again, any woman who is invited to illegal sexual intercourse by a man of nobility and beauty and she refuses his advances, saying, "I fear Allah," will be one of those in the shade of Allah. Any woman who gives in charity from her legal earnings to the extent that her left hand does not know what her right hand has given will be included among them. If a woman remembers Allah when she is alone by herself, she will be included among them like any man. However, the righteous leader is something specific for men. Similarly, performing the prayers in congregation in the mosque is something specific for men. The prayer of the woman in her house is more virtuous as has been stated in the authentic Hadith of the Prophet (peace be upon him).

Shaikh ibn Baz

Ruling Concerning Women Driving Automobiles

All praises are due to Allah. May the peace and blessings of Allah be upon the Messenger of Allah, his family, his Companions and all who follow his guidance. To proceed:

There have been numerous questions concerning the ruling of women driving automobiles. The response is the following:

There is no doubt that such is not allowed. Women driving leads to many evils and negative consequences. Included among these is her mixing with men without her being on her guard. It also leads to the evil sins due to which such an action is forbidden. The Pure Law forbids those acts that lead to forbidden acts and considers those means to be forbidden also. Allah has ordered the wives of the Prophet (peace be upon him) and the women of the believers to remain in their houses, to wear hijab and not to display their adornments to non-mahram males as that leads to promiscuity that overruns a society. Allah has stated,

"Stay in your houses and do not display yourselves like that of the times of ignorance and offer prayer perfectly and give Zakat and obey Allah and His Messenger" (al-Ahzab 33).

Allah also says,

"O Prophet! Tell your wives and your daughters and the women of the believers to draw their cloaks (veils) all over their bodies. That will be better, that they should be known (as free respectable women) so as not to be annoyed. (al-Ahzab 59)

Yet another verse states,

"Tell the believing women to lower their gaze and protect their private parts and not to show off their adornments except only that which is apparent and to draw their veils over necks and bosoms and not to reveal their adornments except to their husbands, their fathers, their husband's fathers, their sons, their husband's sons, their brothers or their brother's sons, or their sister's sons, or their women or the (female) slaves, or old male servants who lack vigor, or small children who have no sense of the shame of sex. And let them not stamp their feet so as to reveal what they hide of their adornment. And beg Allah to forgive you all, O believers, that you may be successful" (al-Nur 31).

The Prophet (peace be upon him) himself said,

"A man is never alone with a woman except that Satan is the third."1

The Purifying Law forbids all of the causes that lead to depravity. Such depravity leads to the innocent and pure women being accused of indecencies. Allah has laid down one of the harshest punishments for such an act in order to protect society from the spreading of the causes of depravity. Women driving cars, however, is one of the causes that lead to that. This is something obvious. But some people are ignorant of the laws of the Shariah and the evil ends that being lax lead to. When such evils are also accompanied by what has inflicted many of diseased hearts of love for promiscuity and the enjoyment of looking at women, it leads to people jumping into this discussion without knowledge and without any consideration of the evils that are behind it. Allah has clearly stated.

"Say: The things that my Lord has forbidden are illicit acts, whether committed openly or secretly, sins [of all kinds], un-righteous oppression, joining partners [in worship] with Allah for which He has given no authority, and saying things about Allah of which you have no knowledge" (al-Araf33).

Another verse in the Quran states,

"Follow not the footsteps of Satan. Verily, he is to you an open enemy. [Satan] commands you only what is evil and sinful, and that you should say against Allah what you know not" (al-Baqara 168-169).

The Prophet (peace be upon him) said,

" I have not left behind me any temptation more harmful for men than women."2

Hudhaifah ibn al-Yamaan said, "The people used to ask the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) about good but I used to ask him about evil out of fear that it may reach me. I said, 'O Messenger of Allah, we used to be living in the Times of Ignorance and Evil. Then Allah brought this good [to us]. Will there be after it evil again?' He said, 'Yes.' I said, 'After that evil, will there be good again?' He said, 'Yes, but it will be tainted.' I said, 'How will it be tainted?' He said, 'There will be a people who would guide without guidance, you will approve of some of their deeds and disapprove of some others.' I said, 'Will there b evil after that good?' He said, 'Yes, there will be callers from the gates of the Hell-Fire. Whoever responds to them shall be flung into it.' I said, 'O Messenger of Allah, describe them to us.' He said, 'They will be from our own people and speak our language. I said, 'What do you order me to do if I should come across the time?' He said, 'Stick to the community of the Muslims and their leader.' I said, 'Suppose they do not have a leader or community?' He said, 'Then separate yourself from all of those factions, even if you have to eat the roots of trees until death comes t you while you are in that state."'

Recorded by al-Bukhari and Muslim

I call upon every Muslim to fear Allah in his speech and action and to be wary of the trials and temptations. Also, be wary of those who call to such things. Everyone must remain far away from that which brings about Allah's anger or leads to it. Each must take every precaution from those callers that the Prophet (peace be upon him) has spoken about in this noble Hadith. May Allah protect us from the evil of temptation and trials and its people May Allah protect for this Nation its religion and repel the evil of those callers to falsehood. May Allah bless and guide all the Muslims to what pleases Him and what is best for them and their success in both this life and the Hereafter. He is the One who is in Control of that and Able to do that.

And may the peace and blessings of Allah be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family and his Companions.

Shaikh ibn Baz


Footnote

1. Recorded by Ahmad and al-Tirmidhi. Al-Albani says it is sahih. Al-Albani, Sahih al-Jami, vol. 1, p. 234.-JZ

2. Recorded by al-Bukhari and Muslin--JZ

Women Working Alongside Men

Question: What is Islam's view of women working alongside men?

Response: It is known that when women go to work in the workplaces of men this leads to mixing with men and being in private with them. This is a very dangerous matter that has dangerous consequences and negative results. It is in clear opposition to the texts of the Shariah that order the women to remain in their houses and to fulfill the type of work that is particular for her and upon which Allah has fashioned her nature, which is far from the place where she will mix with men.

The clear, authentic evidences that indicate that it is forbidden for men and non-related women to be in private together and for men to look at women are numerous. There are also much evidence that what leads up to those forbidden ends are also forbidden. The evidences are many, clear and decisive that the mixing between the sexes is forbidden as it leads to negative and blameworthy results. Among those evidences are the following:

"Stay in your houses and do not display yourselves like that of the times of ignorance and offer prayer perfectly and give Zakat and obey Allah and His Messenger. Allah only wishes to remove evil deeds and sins from you, O members of the family [of the Prophet] and to purify you with a thorough purification." (al-Ahzab 33).

"O Prophet! Tell your wives and your daughters and the women of the believers to draw their cloaks (veils) all over their bodies. That will be better, that they should be known (as free respectable women) so as not to be annoyed. And Allah is Ever Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful" (al-Ahzab 59).

"Tell the believing women to lower their gaze and protect their private parts and not to show off their adornments except only that which is apparent and to draw their veils over necks and bosoms and not to reveal their adornments except to their husbands, their fathers, their husband's fathers, their sons, their husband's sons, their brothers or their brother's sons, or their sister's sons, or their women or the (female) slaves, or old male servants who lack vigor, or small children who have no sense of the shame of sex. And let them not stamp their feet so as to reveal what they hide of their adornment. And beg Allah to forgive you all, O believers, that you may be successful" (al-Nur 31).

"And when you ask them, ask them from behind a screen, that is purer for your hearts and for their hearts" (al-Ahzab 53).

The Prophet (peace be upon him) himself said,

"Beware of entering upon women. the women who are non-mahram." They said, "O Messenger of Allah, what do you say about the in-laws?" He said, "The in-laws are death."1

The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) categorically prohibited privacy between a man and a non-related woman. He said,

"Satan is the third."2

He also prohibited traveling except in the presence of mahram males in order to close the door to the roads that lead to evil and sins and to protect the two parties from the plotting of Satan. That is why it is confirmed from him that he said,

"Be wary and cautious of this world and be wary and cautious of women. Verily, the first trial that afflicted the Tribes of Israel was with respect to women."3

Another hadith states,

"I have not left behind me any temptation more harmful for men than women."4

These clear verses and Ahadith indicate that it is obligatory to avoid the mixing of the sexes that leads to evil and lewdness and the destruction of societies. When we look at the plight of women in some of the Muslim countries we see that she has become a disrespected working servant because of her leaving her house and taking roles that are not her responsibility. The wise people in those lands and in the lands of the West are calling for the return of the woman to her natural roles that Allah has prepared her for and for which her body and mind are me attuned to. But this call is coming too late.

There are enough jobs for women in their houses, teaching positions and other places related to women that make unnecessary for her to take on jobs in the workplace of men. We ask Allah to protect our land and the lands of all Muslims from the plots and machinations of their enemies. May Allah guide those charge and the rest of the media to lead people to what is best for them in both this life and the Hereafter. May Allah guide them executing the commands of their Lord and Creator who is most knowledgeable of what is in their best interests. May Allah bless and guide the leaders of the lands of the Muslims to what is be for the Muslims and the country with respect to their livelihood here and their resurrection. May Allah save us and them and all the Muslims from the misguidance of temptation and the causes of destruction. He is the One with the Power and Ability to do that.

Shaikh ibn Baz


Footnote

1. Recorded by al-Bukhari and Muslim. It implies that such close relations can easily lead to adultery which has the death penalty.--JZ

2. Recorded by Ahmad and al-Tirmidhi. Al-Albani says it is sahih. Al-Albani, Sahih al-Jami, vol. 1, p. 234.-JZ

3. Recorded by Muslim.--JZ

4. Recorded by al-Bukhari and Muslim.--JZ

Ruling Concerning a Woman Remaining with Her Alcoholic Husband

Question: I have three sons and a daughter. My husband, may Allah protect us, is an alcoholic. He has be imprisoned in the past. He is addicted to alcohol and has injured me and my children. I have been divorced from him and I am currently with my family. He does not spend anything on us and I do not have any desire to return to him. However, he has threatened to take my children and that would be something that I could not bear. After all, I am, first and foremost, a mother. Please help me.

Response: This is something that definitely needs to be taken up in the courts of law. One should not remain with an alcoholic as he harms his wife and his children. One should remain away from him unless Allah guides him and he returns to what is correct. If the judge separates the two, usually, the children are given over to the mother as she is most qualified for them while he is not qualified. As long as he has the problem of being an alcoholic, he is not suited to bring up his children as he will destroy and ruin them. Therefore, she has more right to her children than him, even if they be boys. This is what is usually done by the judges and this is what is obligatory. The children must be with her because she is better than him and he is an evildoer. If she refuses to go back to him, she has done well, as such a living condition is harmful and dangerous for her. If he also does not pray, then it is obligatory not to return to him for the one who abandons the prayer is a disbeliever-- and protection is sought from Allah. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said,

"The covenant between us and them is the prayer. Whoever abandons it has committed disbelief."l

It is not obligatory to remain with the one who does not pray.2

"They are not lawful [wives] for the disbelievers nor are the disbelievers lawful [husbands] for them" (al-Mumtahina 10).

[That is,] until Allah guides them and they repent. The woman should go to her family or stay with her children and not let her husband come to them until he repents to Allah and returns to what is right.

If he prays but drinks alcohol, then that is a great sin and great crime. However, he is not a disbeliever but an evildoer. The woman has the right to prevent him from her and to leave him. She is excused for that act. If she remains patient and has the ability to be patient, there is no harm in that option either.

Shaikh ibn Baz


Footnote

1. Recorded by Ahmad, al-Nasal, al-Tirmidhi and ibn Majah. Al-Albani calls it sahih. Al-Albani, Sahih al-Jami, vol. 2, p. 760.--JZ

2. This sentence, as is clear from the remainder of the response, must not be misunderstood. It does not mean that one may stay with one who does not pray if one wishes to do so. It is not an option to remain with a husband who has been deemed a disbeliever.--JZ


Ruling Concerning Producing Deviant Magazines, Working for Them, Distributing Them and Buying Them

Question: What is the ruling concerning producing magazines that display women uncovered and in seductive manner. What about magazines that are concerned only with news about actors and actresses? What is the ruling concerning those who work for such magazines, who distribute them and who buy them?

Response: It is not allowed to produce or support magazines that are comprised of distributing pictures of women encouraging people to fornication, lewdness, homosexuality, drinking alcohol or any other type of wrong act. It is not allowed work for such magazines, either by writing for it or distributing. This would be a type of helping one another in sin and transgression as well as spreading evil on earth and calling others to ruin society a spread depravity. Allah has stated in his Clear Book,

"Help you one another in righteousness and piety, but do not help one another in sin and transgression. And fear Allah, verily, Allah is severe in punishment" (al-Maidah 2).

The Prophet (peace be upon him) also said,

"Whoever calls to guidance shall receive the same reward as the one who follows that guidance, without the reward of either of them being lessened. And whoever calls to misguidance shall bear that sin as well as the sin of the one who follows his call without the burden of either of them being lessened."

This was recorded by Muslim in his Sahih.

The Prophet (peace be upon him) stated in another hadith,

"There are two groups of people from the inhabitants of Hell that I have not yet seen: Men having flogs like oxen tails with them and they would be beating people and women who would be dressed but naked, their heads would be like the humps of the bukht 1camel inclined to one side. They will not enter Paradise and they would not smell its odor although its odor can be smelled from such and such a distance."

This was also recorded by Muslim in his Sahih.

The verses and Ahadith with this meaning are many. We ask Allah to bless and guide Muslims to what is best for them and their salvation. We ask him to guide those in charge of the media in all of its forms to what is best for society. We also ask Allah to protect them from the evils of their own souls and from the plots of Satan. He is Generous, Noble.

Shaikh ibn Baz


Footnote

1. This is a certain type of camel.

You Must Order what is Good Even if the One You Ordered Becomes Upset

Question: If we try to keep people away from spreading tales and backbiting among people, the one who orders good and stops evil is usually abused. The people get angry with him. Are we committing sins because of their anger? Even if it is with respect to one of our parents, shall we stop them or let them be and not consider that matter important?

Response: One of the most important obligations is that of ordering good and preventing evil. Allah says,

"The believers, men and women, are helpers and supporters of one another; they enjoin the good and forbid evil" (alTauba 71).

In this verse, Allah has made it clear that one of the obligatory attributes of believing men and women is ordering good and eradicating evil. Allah also says,

"You are the best of peoples ever raised for mankind, you enjoin what is good and you forbid evil and believe in Allah" (ali-lmran 110).

The Prophet (peace be upon him) said,

"When one of you sees an evil he must change it by his hand. If he is not able to do so, he must change it by his tongue. If he is not able to do so, then by his heart and that is the weakest of faith."

This was recorded by Muslim in his Sahih. The verses and Ahadith concerning the obligation of ordering good and eradicating evil as well as blaming those who do not do such are many. Therefore, it is obligatory upon you and upon every believing man and woman to order good and eradicate evil, even if those who you are rebuking should get upset with you and even if they abuse you. You must have patience. You should follow the example of the messengers (peace be upon all of them) and follow them in the good they performed. While addressing the Prophet (peace be upon him) Allah has stated,

"Therefore, be patient (O Muhammad) as were the Messengers of strong will"

(al-Ahqaf 35).

Another verse states,

"Be patient. Surely, Allah is with those who are patient" (al-Anfal 46).

In another place, Allah quotes the wise man Luqman as saying,

"O my son! Establish the prayer and enjoin the good and forbid evil, and bear with patience whatever befalls you. Verily, that is of the firmness of the affairs" (Luqman 17).

There is no doubt that the reformation of society and its being built on solid ground comes about by it being, first, for the sake of Allah and then by the ordering of good and eradicating of evil. Evil in society tears it apart and presents itself for a general punishment. One of the greatest causes for such a general punishment is the lack of ordering what is good and preventing evil. It has been authentically narrated from the Prophet (peace be upon him) that he said,

"If the people see an evil and they do not change it, soon Allah will inflict them all with His punishment."1

Allah has warned His servants from following the way of the disbelievers of the Tribes of Israel. He says,

"Those among the Tribes of Israel who disbelieved were cursed by the tongue of David and Jesus, son of Mary. That was because they disobeyed [Allah and the messengers] and were transgressing beyond bounds. They used not to forbid one another from the evil which they committed. Vile indeed was what they used to do" (al-Maidah 78-79).

We ask Allah to bless all Muslims with rulers and ruled who establish and fulfill this obligation in the best possible way. We also ask Him to make their affairs good and to protect them from all of the causes of His wrath and punishment. He is Hearing, Responding.

Shaikh ibn Baz


Footnote

1. Recorded by Ahmad with a slight change in the word order. Al-Albani has graded it sahih. Al-Albani, Sahih al-Jami, vol. 1, p. 398.--JZ

Ruling Concerning Exchanging Old Gold for New

Question: A woman goes to the market with her old gold and says to the goldsmith or jeweler, "Estimate for me its price." He does so and then she says, "Give me, for that price, new gold." Is there any contradiction between this act and what the Shariah states?

Response: Such a transaction is not allowed because it is selling gold for gold without making sure it is for an equivalent amount. It has been authentically narrated from the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) who said,

"Gold for gold must be like for like, the same amount for the same amount, weight for weight and in a hand to hand transaction. Whoever adds more or requests more has taken interest."

Recorded by Muslim in his Sahih with more than one wording. It is not allowed to sell gold for an additional amount of gold. This contradicts the equivalency principle that makes the transaction valid. The Shariah's way to handle such a transaction is to sell the gold that she has first for a specific price that she receives from the goldsmith. Then she can buy whatever she needs from him or from someone else in another independent transaction. Therein there will be no interest. One of the allowed transactions of this nature is for her to buy a gold item for currency note or silver currency, hand to hand, or for other wealth, such as coffee, cardamom, rice, sugar, clothes or so forth, even if payments are made over time. This is because there is no interest between the gold item and these commodities.

Shaikh ibn Baz

Sins and Effacing of Blessings

Question: I read that one of the results of sins is punishment from Allah and effacing of blessings. I cried out of fear of that. Please guide me, may Allah reward you.

Response: Every Muslim man and woman must be aware of sins and repent for what sins he did previously. He must also have good expectations of Allah and hope for His forgiveness as well as fearing His anger and punishment. In Allah's Noble Book, He says about His righteous servants,

"Verily, they used to hasten on to do good deeds, and they used to call on Us with hope and fear, and used to humble themselves before Us" (al-Anbiya 90).

Another verse states,

"Those whom they [the disbelievers] call upon [like Jesus and others] desire (for themselves) means of access to their Lord, as to which of them should be the nearest and they hope for His Mercy and fear His torment. Verily, the torment of your Lord is something to be afraid of" (al-lsra 57).

Again,

"The believers, men and women, are helpers and supporters of one another; they enjoin the good and forbid evil. They offer their prayers perfectly and give the zakat and obey Allah and His Messenger. Allah will have His mercy on them. Surely, Allah is All-Mighty, All-Wise" (al-Tauba 71).

At the same time, believers must follow the causes that Allah has allowed them. They must combine together the aspects of fear and hope. In their actions, they must apply the outward causes and put their trust in Allah, trusting in Him to bring about the desired result free from any blemish. Verily, He is the Generous, the Noble. Allah has said,

"Whoever fears Allah and keeps his duty to Him, He will make a way for him to get out [from every difficulty]. And He will provide him from (sources) he never could imagine." (al-Talaq 2-3).

And Allah also says,

"Whosoever fears Allah and keeps his duty to Him, He shall make his matter easy for him" (al-Talaq 4).

And again Allah says,

"And beg Allah to forgive you all, O believers, so that you may be successful"

(al-Nur 31).

It is a must upon you, O sister for the sake of Allah, to repent to Allah for the sins you committed in the past and to become steadfast in His obedience. At the same time, you should have good thoughts and expectations of Allah. Be aware of all of the causes of His anger. Accept the glad tidings of plentiful good and a praiseworthy end.

Shaikh ibn Baz

The Voice of a Woman

Question: Some say that the voice of the woman is aurah [something which must be concealed and not displayed publicly]. Is this correct?

Response: Women are a place for fulfillment of desire for men. They are inclined to them by natural impulses that make them desire and appreciate them. If a woman is flirtatious in her speech, it increases the temptation and desire. For that reason, Allah has ordered the believers, that when they ask anything of women, that they ask from behind a curtain. Allah states,

"And when you ask them, ask them from behind a screen, that is purer for your hearts and for their hearts" (al-Ahzab 53).

He has also prohibited women, when they speak with men, to be flirtatious or soft in their speech in order that those in whose hearts is a disease may not desire them. Allah has stated,

"Be not soft in speech, lest those in whose heart is a disease should be moved with desire" (al-Ahzab 32).

If that was the situation at a time when the believers were strong in their faith, what must be the situation in a time like now when faith has been weakened and very few stick to the religion? You must mix with non-mahram men as little as possible and speak to them but little. You must do so only if there is truly a need to do so and, when doing so, you must not use flirtatious and soft speech, as is stated in the above verse.

Based on that, one can see that the voice, free of soft or flirtatious speech, is not aurah in itself. The women used to speak to the Prophet (peace be upon him) and ask him questions about the religion. Similarly, they used to speak to the male Companion when they needed to do so and no one objected to that.

The Standing Committee

Ruling Concerning a Woman Leaving Her House without Her Husband's Permission

Question: What is the ruling concerning a woman going out to the marketplace without her husband's permission?

Response: If a woman wants to leave her husband's house, she may inform him of where she wants to go and he may permit her to go there as long as it is not someplace where harm is expected, as he is most knowledgeable of what is in her best interest. This is based on the generality of Allah's statement,

"And they (women) have rights similar to [those] over them according to what is reasonable, but men have a degree [of responsibility] over them'' (al-Baqara 228).

And Allah's statement,

"Men are the protectors and maintainers of women, because Allah has made the one of them to excel the other" (aI-Nisa 34).

The Standing Committee

A Forbidden Gift

Question: I used to live in a society in which men and women intermix. One man gave me a present as a sign of his devilish desire. It was an expensive necklace. All praises be to Allah, I have left that society and I now know the way of truth. I feel remorse for what I did. Do I have a right to that gift and is it allowed for me to adorn myself with it or should I give it in charity or what should I do? I am not able to return it to its giver due to my dislike for that society.

Response: Thank Allah for your safety and what He saved you from. As for that gift, do not return it to its giver but give it away in charity.

The Standing Committee

Keeping a Dog in the House

Question: We have a female dog in our house that we imported. We did not know the ruling concerning owning dogs and we were not in need of the dog. After we knew the ruling, we threw the dog out but he would not leave because he grew up in the house. We did not want to have him killed. What is the solution?

Response: There is no doubt that it is forbidden to keep a dog except for those cases that the Shariah has specifically permitted. Whoever has a dog-- unless it be a hunting, livestock or farm dog-- will lose a qirat's [a very large portion] worth of his reward for every day. If he loses a qirat's worth of reward, it means that he is committing a sin because one does not lose reward except by committing sin. Hence, both of these aspects show that it is forbidden, due to the result of that. In this case, I advise all of those who are deceived into following what the disbelievers do concerning having dogs as pets, that such dogs are evil and a great impurity. They are one of the most impure of animals. The impurity of the dog is not cleansed except by washing a container [in which it licked] seven times, one of them being with soil. Even the pig, that Allah has declared in the Quran to be unlawful and impure, has not reached that extent. Therefore, dogs are impure and dirty. However, with deep apologies, we find some people deceived by the ways of the disbelievers who like impure things and, therefore, they also keep dogs as pets without

any need or necessity. They keep the dogs, bring them and clean them, although they can never become cleansed even if one uses an entire sea. This is because their impurity is a physical impurity. Furthermore, they waste a lot of money on such dogs and this is wasted money. The Prophet (peace be upon him) has forbidden the wasting of money. I advise those who have been deceived to repent to Allah and to get the dogs out of their houses. As for those who need the dogs for hunting, farming or livestock, there is no harm in that because the Prophet (peace be upon him) has permitted that.

The question still remains to be responded to. I say to you that if you let the dog leave your house and throw him out, then you will not be responsible for him. Do not leave him in your house. Perhaps if you leave the door open for him to leave, he may go out and eat from what Allah has provided them, as the other dogs do.

Shaikh ibn Uthaimin

Interpretation of Seeing the Deceased in a Dream

Question: What is the interpretation of seeing a deceased every time in dreams?

Response: If one sees a deceased in a good state in a dream, this lends hope that he is in a good state. If one sees him in another type of state, this could simply be devils taking on the form of people. Devils take on the shapes of people in a disliked situation in order to grieve the living. This is because devils are very avaricious to do anything that brings grief, worry and sadness to the believers. Allah has said,

"Secret counsels are only from Satan, in order that he may cause grief to the believers. But he cannot harm them in the least, except as Allah permits" (al-Mujadalah 10).

So if a person sees something evil for a deceased in a dream, he must seek refuge in Allah from the evil of Satan and the evil of what he saw. He should not communicate that dream to anyone concerning that deceased. In that way, the deceased will not harm whatsoever. In fact, any time a person sees something disturbing in a dream, he should then seek refuge in Allah from the evil of Satan and the evil of what he saw. Then he should spit three times on his left side. He should then change his side upon which he was sleeping to the other side. If he makes ablution and prays, that is better and superior. He should not communicate that dream to anyone and, in that case, he will not be harmed by it at all.

Shaikh ibn Uthaimin

Buying Magazines

Question: I am very much bent on reading beneficial magazines. I benefit from them in my life. However, the problem of the pictures in those magazines disturbs me. Is there any harm on my part if I buy them? What shall I do with them as I keep them with me, for I am in need of them, or should I simply bum them?

Response: You may read beneficial magazines or newspapers that contain aspects related to religion, literature, manners or so forth. As for the pictures, you may blot them out with ink or remove them or disfigure them when you are storing the magazines in a storage or box. When you are finished with them, have them burned.

Shaikh ibn Jibreen

Plastic Surgery or Other Operations to Fix a Disfigurement or Deformation is Permissible

Question: What is the ruling concerning operations done for beautification? What is the ruling concerning learning how to be a beautician?

Response: Beautification is of two types. One is beautification to remove a blemish or disfigurement that is the result of an accident or something else. There is nothing wrong with that. The Prophet (peace be upon him) allowed a man who had his nose broken in a battle to wear a nose made of gold.

The second type of beautification is superfluous and is not done to remove a blemish or disfigurement. It is done only to increase one's beauty. This is forbidden and not permissible. This is based on the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) cursing the one who had her eyebrow hairs removed, the one who does the act of removing eyebrows, the one who adds hair to hers and the one who does the adding, the one who gets tattooed and the tattooer. This is because this is simply to add to one's beauty and is not in order to remove a blemish or disfigurement. As for one who is studying and in his coursework he takes courses on plastic surgery and the like, there is no harm in taking those courses and learning such but one may not use them in forbidden ways. I advise the one who wants such a surgery to remain away from it as it forbidden. Perhaps if this advise came from a doctor himself it would have more of an effect on the people.

Shaikh ibn Uthaimin


Ruling Concerning a Wife Taking from Her Husband's Wealth and then Making an Oath that She Did not Take Anything

Question: What is the ruling concerning a wife who took money from her husband on a number of occasions, without his knowledge, to spend it on her children, and she swore that she did not take anything from him? What is the ruling concerning such an act?

Response: It is not allowed for a woman to take wealth from her husband without his permission. Allah has forbidden anyone from taking anybody else's wealth. The Prophet (peace be upon him) announced that during his Farewell Pilgrimage, when he said,

"Verily, your blood, wealth and honor are inviolable like the inviolability of this day of yours in this month of yours in this land of yours. Have I not conveyed the message?"1

However, if her husband is miserly and does not give her and her children what is sufficient for them of maintenance, according to what is customary, then she has the right to take that amount of maintenance from his wealth for her and her children. She may not take more than that. She may not take something more than what is needed for herself and her children. This is based on the Hadith of Hind bint Utbah who came to the Prophet (peace be upon him) and described her husband as a stingy man who does not give her what is needed for her and her children. The Prophet then said to her,

"Take from his wealth what is sufficient for you and your children."

In another narration, it states,

"What suffices for you and for your child according to what is reasonable and customary."2

In the question, the woman states that she swore to her husband that she had not taken anything. Her swearing is forbidden unless there is some explanation behind it. For example, she could have meant by what she said, "By Allah, I did not take anything which was forbidden for me to take," or, "By Allah, I did not take anything in addition to the maintenance that is obligatory upon you," or some other kind of interpretation that is consistent with that she rightfully deserved. Such an interpretation or way of speaking is permissible for the one who is being wronged. However, if a person is wronging another, or is neither wronging another nor being wronged, then such reinterpretation or way of speaking is not permissible. A woman whose husband is being miserly that he is not spending upon her or her children is a woman who is being wronged.

Shaikh ibn Uthaimin


Footnote

1. This was recorded by al-Bukhari.--JZ

2. This translator is not familiar with the first version stated above. However, the second version has been recorded by Muslim and many others. JZ

Remove the Uncommon Hairs from Your Face

Question: Is it allowed for a woman to remove or lighten the hairs of her eyebrows if they appear in a disfigured manner?

Response: This question has two aspects to it. The first if that is done by plucking out those hairs. That is forbidden. Indeed, it is a great sin. It is an act whose performer the Prophet (peace be upon him) cursed. Second is to have the hair trimmed clipped. On this point there is a difference of opinion among scholars. Is this also a kind of removing the eyebrows or not? It is best to avoid that act and for the woman not to do it. As for hair that is uncommon or unusual for women to have, such as what grows on part of the face wherein women usually do not have hair growth, such as a woman having a mustache or cheek hair growth, there is no harm in removing that kind of hair. This is because it goes against what is normal and is a kind of disfigurement for woman. As for eyebrows, it is normal for them to be either very thin or very thick and wide. Both of these are normal. If something is normal, it should not be opposed because the people will not view it as a blemish. In fact, they may consider its non-existence or its existence as a thing of beauty. Therefore, it is a type of blemish that calls for removal.

Shaikh ibn Uthaimin

Women Wearing Their Hair in a Fashion Wherein it is Gathered On Top of the Head

Question: What is the ruling concerning a woman putting a hair in a fashion where all of it is gathered on the top of the head?1

Response: If the hair is gathered on top of the head then, according to the scholars, such a fashion is prohibited as the Prophet (peace be upon him) warned about it in his statement,

"There are two groups of people from the inhabitants of Hell that I have not yet seen..."

He mentioned the women who would be dressed but naked, their heads would be like the humps of the bukht2 camel inclined to one side.3 So it is prohibited if it is all gathered on top of the head. However, if it falls upon the neck, for example, there is no harm in it-- unless, of course, the woman goes out to the marketplace like that. Then that would be a type of displaying her adornments as [her amount of hair and hair style] could be clearly noted even when covered by her outer garment. Hence, that would be a type of public display of her beauty and a source of temptation. Thus, it would not be allowed.

Shaikh ibn Uthaimin


Footnote

1. Like the beehive style that was popular in the United States during the 1950s and 1960s.--JZ

2. This is a certain type of camel.

3. This was recorded by Muslim in his Sahih.--JZ

That Deed is not Allowed

Question: Is it allowed for a woman to trim her eyebrows if they are long and wide, similar to that of men, in order to beautify herself for her husband?

Response: That is not allowed no matter what the case may be. The Prophet (peace be upon him) has cursed the one who does it and the one who has it done. A curse implies prohibition of the act whose doer has been cursed. There is no doubt that beauty lies in the way that Allah has made the creation. Eyebrows are created on the human body as part of the beauty of the face. They are also beneficial, protecting the eyes from what falls from above. Removing them or trimming them is a type of changing the creation of Allah and is not allowed.

Shaikh ibn Jibreen

The Worse People are the Two-Faced

Question: I witness some people who are two-faced in their speech with respect to me and others. Should I be silent about that or inform them of it?

Response: It is not allowed to be two-faced. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said,

"You will find the worse people to be the two-faced ones who come to this one with one face and to the other with another face."1

The meaning of that is that he greatly praises a person to his face for some worldly benefit and then in his absence he berates him in front of the people. This is usually done by people who have no dignity or class. It is obligatory upon one who knows about such behavior to advise such people and to warn them about that behavior, which is one of the characteristics of the hypocrites. Furthermore, people will definitely find out that such a person has this terrible characteristic sooner or later. They will then despise him, be wary of him and remain away from him. Therefore, he will not meet his goal. If he does not change after being advised, then you must warn the others about him and what he is doing, even behind his back. This is based on the hadith that states,

"Mention the characteristics of the evildoer so that the people may be warned about him."2

Shaikh ibn Jibreen


Footnote

1. Recorded by al-Bukhari and Muslim.--JZ

2. This is part of a hadith recorded by Abu Yala, al-Tirmidhi al-Hakeem, al-Uqaili, ibn Adi, al-Tabarani, al-Baihaqi and others. It is from Jarood ibn Yazid onthe authority of Bahz. Jarood has been deemed a liar and forger of hadith by some. After recording the hadith, al-Uqaili said, "It has no source in the hadith of Bahz whatsoever, nor in the hadith of anyone else and there is no corroboration for it." Al-Daraqutni stated that Jarood fabricated it. Al-Tabarani also records it with another chain that contains liars. It is very strange that the Shaikh would mention a hadith of this caliber in his response to the question-- especially without pointing out the great weakness of this hadith. See Abu Jafar al-Uqaili, Kirab al-Dhuafa al-Kabeer (Makkah: Dar al-Baaz. 1984),vol. l, p. 202; al-Sakhawi, p. 562;--JZ

Ruling Concerning Giving Preference to Some Children Over Others

Question: Is it allowed for a woman to give preference to one child over another with respect to greeting and welcoming them, while in their treatment of her they are the same? What about for the grandchildren while they are also the same with respect to how they treat and greet her?

Response: The father1 must be just and equitable among his children. He cannot give preference to one over the other with respect to what he gives them, grants them or presents to them. This is based on the hadith,

"Fear Allah and be just among your children."2

The Prophet (peace be upon him) also said,

"Don't you like for them to be the same with respect to their being dutiful to you? So treat them all the same."3

Some of the great scholars used to prefer to be equitable among their children even with respect to kissing them, smiling and welcoming them based on the clear order to be just among the children. However, one may be pardoned concerning that matter sometimes. A father may prefer one child due to his being younger or ill and so forth, out of compassion for him. Otherwise, the basic rule is that one must be just with respect to all dealings with one's children.

Shaikh ibn Jibreen


Footnote

1. The question explicitly mentions "woman" while the answer explicitly

mentions "the father". However, the ruling for both parents is one and the same.-JZ

2. Recorded by al-Bukhari and Muslim.--JZ

3. Until now, this translator could not find a hadith with such a wore even in the relevant section of Kanz al-Ummal. Perhaps the closest narrations are: "Fear Allah and be equitable among your children in the same way that you love for them to be dutiful towards you,"; "Fear Allah and be just between them as you have a right upon them to be dutiful to you." In Kanz al-Ummal, it states that both of these have been narrated from al-Numan ibn Basheer by al-Tabarani. However, this translator could not locate it there and they were not mentioned by al-Haithami in Majma al-Zawaid. Another interesting aspect is al-Albani's declaring this narration weak in Dhaeef al-Jami al-Sagheer and then adding the footnote, "Until now I have not come across its chain. I do not think it is authentic. In the Sahihs of al-Bukhari and Muslim there is the hadith without the additional words, 'in the same way that you love themů'" Previous to al-Albani, al-Syuti gave it the notation of being weak and al-Manawi did not comment upon that. See Ala al-Din al-Hindi, Kanz al-Ummaal fi Sunan al-Aqwal wa al-Afaal (Beirut: Muassassat al-Risalah, 1989), vol. 16, pp. 444-445; Muhammad Nasir al-Din al-Albani, Dhaeef al-Jami al-Sagheer (Beirut: al-Maktab al-Islami, 1988), p. 19; Abdul Rauf al-Manawi, Faidh al-Qadeer Sharh al-Jami al-Sagheer (Beirut: Dar al- Marifah, 1972), vol. 1, p. 127.--JZ

Removing Extra Teeth

Question: What is the ruling concerning removing extra teeth?

Response: There is no harm in removing extra teeth because it is a visible deformation and it disturbs the one who has it. Similarly, it is allowed to straighten them by braces and so forth. However, it is not allowed to add spaces between them or file them down. These have been prohibited.

Shaikh ibn Jibreen

Ruling Concerning Beating Students [as a Matter of Discipline]

Question: What is the ruling concerning beating students that need some instruction in their manners or learning?

Response: It is best for teachers to be gentle and soft with younger and older students. However, if the situation calls for them to be punished or beaten, without causing injury to them, then it is permissible. It is the custom of the foolish and ignorant not to have proper behavior and respect. Therefore, sometimes it is needed to treat them with harshness and force. The effect of this, in their cases, is greater than kindness and gentleness.

Shaikh ibn Jibreen

Is it or Is it Not Sunnah to Bury One's Nails and Hairs After Cutting Them?

Question: I have seen some people, especially women, burying their hair and nails after they have cut them on the basis that leaving them in the open is a sin. To what extent is this correct?

Response: The scholars state that it is best and preferred to bury such hairs and nails. Such has been reported from some of the Companions. However, it is not true to say that leaving them in the open or throwing them in a specific place is considered a sin.

Shaikh ibn Uthaimin

The One Who Reads the Quran Without Knowing Its Meaning will be Rewarded

Question: I continually read the quran but I do not understand its meaning. Will I be rewarded by Allah for that?

Response: The Noble Quran is full of blessings. Allah has said,

"[This is] a Book which We have sent down to you, full of blessings that they may ponder over its Verses, and that men of understanding may remember" (Sad 29).

A person is rewarded for reciting the Quran regardless of whether he comprehends it or not. But a believer must not recite the Quran without understanding it while he is responsible to apply it. If a person wants to learn medicine, for example, and he studies the books of medicine, he will not benefit from them until he understands their meanings and explanations. In fact, he will be very desirous to take advantage of every opportunity to understand their meanings in order to apply them. If that is the case with books like medicine, what must be the case with respect to reading the Book of Allah without thought and understanding of its meaning while it is a cure for what is in the hearts and an admonition for mankind? This is why the Companions would not go beyond ten verses until they understood the meanings of those verses with respect to what they contain of knowledge and how to apply them. A person is rewarded and recompensed for reciting the Quran whether he understands it or not. However, he must be most anxious and use every opportunity to understand its meaning and to take that meaning from the trustworthy scholars, like [studying] the Quranic commentaries by ibn Jariral-Tabari, ibn Katheer and others.

Shaikh ibn Uthaimin

An Invalid Bequeath

Question: My father wrote that his son is to be the owner of a farm after his death. He has four daughters other than that son. Is that permissible? If that farm is divided over the son and four girls, how is that division to be?

Response: Allah has made it clear how the estate of deceased is distributed:

"Allah commands you as regards your children's [inheritance]; to the male, a portion equal to that of two females" (al-Nisa 11).

The Prophet (peace be upon him) also said,

"Allah has allotted his share to everyone who has a right. Therefore, there is no bequeathing on behalf of an heir"1

Based on that, the bequest of that father for that child is an invalid bequest and it is not allowed to be executed--unless all the other heirs are pleased with it and they agree that there is no harm in it. If they do not agree to it, that farm must be returned to his estate and divided according to the portions Allah has designated in the Quran. It will be divided among all of the heirs. If he does not have an heir besides that one child and those daughters, then the male receives twice the share of one female. The value of that farm is then distributed. Similarly, any shares that the deceased left behind will be one share for each daughter and two shares for the son.

Shaikh ibn Uthaimin


Footnote

1. Recorded by al-Tirmidhi. Al-Albani has graded it sahih. Al-Albani, Sahih al-Jami, vol. 1, p. 354.-JZ


Ruling Concerning Women Attending Educational Meetings

Question: Is it allowed for Muslim women to attend educational meetings and fiqh study sessions in the mosques?

Response: Yes. It is allowed for her to attend educational meetings, regardless if they are related to practical matters or to matters of faith and monotheism. This is given the condition that she is not perfumed or displaying her beauty. She must also be distant from the men and not mixing with them. This is based on the Messenger of Allah's (peace be upon him) statement,

"The best rows for the women are the last ones and the worst are the front ones."1

This is because the front rows are those closest to the men and, therefore, the back rows are better than the front rows.

Shaikh ibn Uthaimin


Footnote

1. Recorded by Muslim.--JZ

Ruling Concerning Suicide

Question: What is the ruling concerning suicide?

Response: Suicide is for a person to intentionally kill himself regardless of the reason. It is a forbidden act and is one of the great sins. It falls under the general meaning of the verse,

'Whoever kills a believer intentionally, his recompense is Hell to abide therein, and the Wrath and the Curse of Allah are upon him, and a great punishment is prepared for him" (al-Nisa 93).

It is also confirmed in the Hadith from the Prophet (peace be upon him) that if anyone kills himself with something, he will be punished with that thing in the hell-fire forever. In general, the one who commits suicide does so due to difficulties he is facing in life, regardless if those are the acts of Allah [such as, what the West calls "natural disasters"] or the acts of creation. He is not able to bear what has happened to him. He is, in reality, like one who jumps from the frying pan into the fire. He has, perhaps, moved from one bad situation to a worse one. If he were to be patient, Allah would help him bear his troubles. As it is said, it is impossible for one state to continue forever.

Shaikh ibn Uthaimin

Permissible Work for a Woman

Question: What are the permissible types of work for a Muslim woman to work in without being in contradiction with the teachings of her religion?

Response: The places of work for women are those places that are specific for women. For example, she may work in woman's education, either in administration or otherwise. She can also work in her house by being a tailor for women and so forth. It is not allowed for her to work in areas which are exclusive for men because in that case she must mix with men and this is a great source of trial and temptation that one must beware of. One must realize that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said,

"I have not left behind me any temptation more harmful for men than women."1

"Verily, the [first] trial that afflicted the Tribes of Israel was with respect to women."2

A man must keep his family and wife from falling into such temptations and their causes under all circumstances.

Shaikh ibn Uthaimin


Footnote

1. Recorded by al-Bukhari and Muslim.--JZ

2. Recorded by Muslim. The Arabic text of this work presents these two hadith as one hadith. In reality, they are two hadith.--JZ

Light Sporting Between Spouses

Question: Can we understand from the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) racing with his wife Aisha that women can participate in athletics? We would like you to clarify this issue.

Response: That race was in a particular circumstance. It is apparent that it was at night and the people had retired to their quarters. The race took place in the mosque, close to it or at the end of the city. Perhaps the purpose behind it was to complete the good relations between them and increase the love and affection between the spouses. Based on that, one may use that as evidence for similar acts. Therefore, it is allowed for a man to do something similar with his wife on the condition that they are concealed and not a source of distraction or temptation. As for her practicing publicly in athletics, be it sports, racing, wrestling or so forth, one cannot derive that from that story of the Prophet (peace be upon him). That story is limited to actions between spouses and in the manner we have described. And Allah knows best.

Shaikh ibn Jibreen

The Wealth and Dower of a Wife

Question: Is it allowed for a husband to take his wife's wealth and to include it with his if such was done with her permission or must he first get the permission of their children?

Response: There is no doubt that a woman has the most right to her dowry and her wealth that she got through her work, as a gift, inheritance and so forth. It is her wealth and her possession. She may dispose of it herself and no one else may do so. But if she allows her husband to take all of it or part of it, this is permissible and it becomes permissible for him. As Allah says in the Quran,

"And give to the women their dower with a good heart, but if they, of their own good pleasure, remit any part of it to you, take it, and enjoy it without fear of any harm [as Allah has made it lawful]" (al-Nisa 4).

This is conditional upon her giving it of her free will and pleasure. There is no need for the approval of her children or anyone else as long as she is competent and mature. However, it is not allowed for the wife to then use that for her benefit, continuing to praise what she did and continuing to remind her husband of the favor she did for him. In the same way, it is not allowed for the husband to mistreat her if she refused to give him her wealth. He cannot make things difficult for her or harm her if she does not give it to him as it is her personal property and she has the most right to it. And Allah knows best.

Shaikh ibn Jibreen

Looking at Pictures of Women in Magazines or in Films

Question: Is it allowed to view pictures of nude women in magazines or to see them in movies?

Response: It is not allowed to look at pictures of non-related1 women who are not wearing hijab. It is not allowed to buy such films or magazines which contain such pictures. In fact, they must be burnt so that the evil is not spread and lewdness does not occur due to the existence of its causes.

Shaikh ibn Jibreen


Footnote

1. It seems that the Shaikh has understood the question to mean " women who are not wearing hijab". This is one possible understanding. Allah knows best.--JZ

Ruling Concerning Listening to Music and Watching Depraved TV Shows

Question: What is the ruling concerning listening to music and singing? What is the ruling concerning watching TV shows in which women are shown displaying their beauty and adornments [that is, without proper hijab]?

Response: Listening to music and singing is forbidden. There is no doubt about its prohibition. Some of the Companions and Followers stated that singing develops hypocrisy in the heart and listening to singing is a kind of idle amusement and indulging in it. Allah has said,

"And of mankind is he who purchases idle talk [music singing] to mislead (men) from the Path of Allah without knowledge, and takes it [the Path of Allah] by way of mockery. For such there will be a humiliating torment." (Luqman 6).

In explaining this verse, the Companion ibn Masud said, "By Allah, this refers to singing." The explanation of a Companion is authoritative. It comes third in the sources of Quranic commentary. Quranic commentary has three levels to it: explaining the Quran by other verses of the Quran, explaining the Quran by the sunnah of the Prophet (peace be upon him) and explaining the Quran by the statements of the Companions. In fact, some scholars even state that the statements of the Companions in Quranic exegesis are considered to have come from the Prophet (peace be upon him) himself. However, the correct opinion is that they do not have such a ruling. This is the closer opinion to what is right. In addition, the Prophet (peace be upon him) warned about such listening to music and singing when he said,

"Them will be a people from my Nation who will try to make fornication, silk, alcohol and musical instruments permissible."1

That is, they will consider permissible fornication and alcohol. They will also make silk permissible although for men it is not allowed. And musical instruments are the tools of idle amusement. This was recorded by al-Bukhari from the hadith of Abu Malik al-Ashari or Abu Amr al-Ashari. Based on that, I advise all of my Muslim brethren to be on one's guard concerning listening to singing and music. I also advise them not to be deceived by the statements of those people of knowledge who say that musical instruments are permissible. The evidence showing their prohibition is clear and straightforward.

As for watching shows which contain women, this is forbidden since it leads to temptation and attachment to such women. Most of the shows are harmful, even if they do not show women. Their purpose, in general, is to harm society's culture and behavior. I ask Allah to protect the Muslims from this harm and to guide the Muslim leaders to what is best for the Muslims.

Shaikh ibn Uthaimin


Footnote

1. Recorded by al-Bukhari.--JZ

It is Not Allowed to Shake Hands with a Woman Even if She is Wearing Gloves

Question: Is it allowed to pray while facing a scenic landscape? Is there a sin upon a woman if she shakes hands with a man while she is wearing gloves?

Response: It is not allowed for a woman to shake hands with a man who is not mahram to her, even if she is wearing gloves or if her hand is under a garment or such. All of this is handshaking even if there is some barrier between the two hands. As for the aforementioned prayer, it is not allowed if the landscape is an illustration and something that takes the person's attention while he is praying. If it is something one is accustomed to, there is no harm in it.

Shaikh ibn Jibreen

Performing Voluntary Fasts is Not Proper Before Making Up What Was Missed

Question: If a woman has to make up some days from Ramadhan, is it allowed for her to perform voluntary fasts, like fasting the Day of Ashura, while she has yet made up those days from Ramadhan?

Response: One must make up the missed days of Ramadhan quickly. It is not proper to perform voluntary fasts before those days are made up. If a person fasts the Day of Ashura or a similar day with the intention of performing a voluntary fast, then she still has to make up her obligatory days that she missed. If, however, she fasts it with the intention that it is one of the days that she must make up, this is then proper and she will be rewarded for that, Allah willing.

Shaikh ibn Jibreen

It is not Allowed for a Husband to Spend the Wife's Wealth

Question: Does the husband have the right to object to the fact that I have given my inheritance to my mother? Does he have the right to spend the wealth and salary of the wife?

Response: A wife's wealth is her possession and she has the right to spend it, give it as a gift, give it in charity, pay off loans, give up her right to some money, such as when someone owes her money or her inheritance, to whomsoever she wishes, a relative or non-relative. The husband has no right to object to that as long as she is adult and mature. Her husband has no right to spend her wealth unless she approves of that. If she has a job and receives a salary and the job makes her not fulfill some of his rights, then he could keep her from that job unless she agrees to the condition that they share the salary in return for his allowing her to work and her not fulfilling some of his rights and also in return for him taking her back and forth to work.

Shaikh ibn Jibreen

Shall I Serve My Father-in-Law?

Question: I am a woman who serves my father-in-law. He has no one except my husband. Do I have the right to wash him and see him?

Response: As for your serving your father-in-law, this is a deed that deserves to be thanked as it is part of your goodness to that elderly man and to your husband also. You may wash him except for his private parts (back and front). As for his private parts, if he can wash them himself, he should do so and it would not be allowed for you to wash them. However, if he cannot do so, there is no harm upon you doing it for him with the condition that you wear gloves on your hands, so you do not directly touch his private parts. At the same time you must lower your gaze and not look at his private parts. It is not allowed for you to look at anyone's private parts except for that of your husband.

Shaikh ibn Uthaimin

Cheating on Scientific/Secular Exams

Question: What is the ruling concerning cheating in English classes or science classes, like math classes, and so forth?

Response: Cheating is not allowed in any class whatsoever. The purpose of the examinations is to determine the level and the grades of the students in that class. Cheating also is laziness and deception. It allows a weaker student to excel beyond those who actually work.

The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said,

"Whoever deceives us is not one of us."1

Deception here is general for any kind whatsoever. Allah knows best.

Shaikh ibn Jibreen


Footnote

1. Recorded by Muslim.--JZ

Cutting One's Hair

Question: What is the ruling concerning a woman cutting her hair?

Response: Among the Hanbalis, it is disliked for a woman to cut her hair. But if the haircut is like that of men, it becomes forbidden. This is based on the Prophet's saying,

"Allah has cursed those women who imitate and be like men."1

Similarly, if she cuts her hair in such a way as to resemble the disbelievers, it is also forbidden. It is not allowed to imitate the disbelieving, Godless women. The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said,

"Whoever resembles or imitates a people is one of them." 2

If it is neither an imitation of men or of the disbelievers, then it is disliked among the Hanbali scholars.

Shaikh ibn Uthaimin


Footnote

1. Recorded by Ahmad. In the version by al-Bukhari and others, it Prophet (peace be upon him) who cursed such women.-JZ

2. Recorded by Abu Dawud. Al-Albani has graded it sahih. Al-Al Sahih al-Jami, vol. 2, p. 1058.--JZ

Does the Harshness of Illness Remove Sins?

Question: Does the harshness of the pangs of death remove sins? Similarly, does illness also remove sins?

Response: Yes, everything that afflicts a person of illness, difficulty, grief or sadness, even a thorn that pricks him, acts as an expiation for sins. Furthermore, if he is patient and hoping for rewards from Allah, then in addition to it being an expiation, he is also rewarded for that patience with which he faced that affliction. There is no difference on this point between that which afflicts a person at death or beforehand. Afflictions are an expiation of sins for the believer. This is indicated in Allah's words,

"And whatever of misfortune befalls you, it is because of what your hands have earned. And He pardons much" (alShura 30).

If it is due to what our hands have earned, this indicates that it is an expiation for what we have done and earned. Similarly, the Prophet (peace be upon him) stated that a believer is never afflicted by any grief, sadness or injury, even a prick of a thorn, except that Allah expiates sins from him due to it.

Shaikh ibn Uthaimin

It is Permissible to Use Eggs, Honey and Milk to Cure

Question: Some of my friends use eggs, honey and milk to remove freckles and spots that appear on the face. Is that allowed?

Response: It is well-known that those are types of food that Allah has created to feed the body. If a person needs to use them for another purpose, that is not improper, such as a cure, then there is no harm. This is based on Allah's statement,

"He it is Who created for you all that is on earth" (al-Baqara 29).

His saying, "for you," means that, in general, it may be used in any beneficial way as long as there is nothing to indicate its prohibition. As for using it for beautification, there are other sources that are preferred to be used. However, there is nothing wrong with beautification. In fact, Allah is beautiful and He loves beauty. However, to exaggerate in this matter until it becomes the number one concern, and one neglects many other things and forgets many of the beneficial aspects of his religion and worldly life, is not allowed. It is a type of extravagance and Allah does not love extravagance.

Shaikh ibn Uthaimin

Ruling Concerning Applauding and Whistling

Question: What is the ruling concerning applauding (clapping) and whistling that many people do at parties?

Response: The ruling concerning that is that it is something that has been taken, apparently, from the non-Muslims. Therefore, Muslims should not do it. If a person is very pleased by something, he should extol Allah's greatness [say Allahu akbar] or glorify Allah [say Subhanallah]. Furthermore, this should not be done as a group chant, like some people do today. A person says such things between himself and his soul. There is no basis whatsoever for everyone saying Allahu akbar together in an audible voice when something occurs which pleases them.

Shaikh ibn Uthaimin

It is Not Allowed to Cheat on Exams

Question: I gave my classmate the answers to some questions during the exams after she has exhorted me to give her the answer in any way possible. What is the view of the religion on such a practice?

Response: It is not allowed to cheat during exams or to help someone cheat on something, regardless if it be by whispering or any other form of trickery and deception. It is something that harms everyone for the cheater then receives positions that he is not qualified for or deserving of. This is harmful and deceiving. And Allah knows best.

Shaikh ibn Jibreen

Ridiculing Teachers and Giving Them Nicknames

Question: Some of the female students ridicule their teachers and give them foul and evil nicknames or they laugh about them. They say that they do not mean those things and that they are only joking.

Response: A Muslim must guard his tongue from anything that hurts another Muslim or degrades him. A hadith states,

"Do not harm Muslims nor search for their private matters"1

Allah says,

"Woe to every slanderer and backbiter" (al-Humazah 1).

And,

"A slanderer going about with calumnies" (al-Qalam 11).

And, finally,

"Nor insult one another by nicknames" (al-Hujurat 11).

To belittle or harm a Muslim is forbidden.

Shaikh ibn Jibreen


Footnote

1. Recorded by al-Tirmidhi. Al-Albani called it hasan sahih. Muhammad Nasir al-Din al-Albani, Sahih Sunan al-Tirmidhi, vol. 2, p. 200.-JZ

It is not Allowed for a Teacher to Cheat a Student

Question: Some teachers do not give students their full rights and fail them simply because of the teacher's emotions and feelings. What is the opinion of the Shariah concerning that?

Response: It is forbidden for a teacher to wrong a student and to keep him from getting what he deserves, whether it be a particular grade or advancement to the next level. When he does not give him what he deserves, he is hurting the student's interest. Instead, he must be just and fair and give everyone what they deserve.

Shaikh ibn Jibreen

She Did Well and She Did Wrong

Question: A woman collected her husband's money that was in addition to what was needed for household items and stored them until they became thousands of dollars, without telling her husband about it. She did that so she could repay a debt that he had from her brother. Then, all of a sudden, she told him about it and he was pleased with what she had done. Then, afterwards, he became disturbed about it and began to doubt her and not trust her anymore, even though she is a very religious believer and her

intention was good. However, he has some evil friends that are pushing him to think such thoughts. She wants to know if she was sinful or not in what she did.

Response: That woman did well in some aspects and wrong in other aspects. She was doing well in trying to relieve her husband of the debt as he was in debt to another and she wanted to free him from that. Her intention could have also been to help her brother by giving him his right as her husband was delaying in returning what was rightfully his although he had the ability to do so. She wanted her brother to receive his right that he was in need of. But the method she took was one of deception. However, she was wrong in doing it in a deceiving fashion that was like stealing and hiding some of the money that she had taken to meet the household needs. In that case, she was lying. I advise the husband to forgive her and have good thoughts about her. And he should return to trusting her and believing in her.

Shaikh ibn Jibreen

Perhaps You Dislike Something Whereas Allah Has Put a Great Deal of Good Therein

Question: I have been at my place of work for about five years now and I am not happy with my situation. I would like to change my job because I am not able to fulfill it properly. Before I thought of moving to another place, I prayed Salat al-Istikhaara hoping that my steps would be on a firm foundation. My heart was resolved to leave that job and I stated to do so. However, every hope I had to leave was soon exhausted and everything returned to how it used to be. Since that time I have been trying to leave this job but without any benefit.

Is Salat al-lstikhaara in those circumstances permissible or not? If it is legally sanctioned, what is the Divine wisdom behind me staying in my work for five years while I hate it and have not had an opportunity to change it?

Response: Do not dislike your staying in that job, even for a long period of time. Perhaps, it is better for you than other jobs. You should fulfill your job to the best of your ability and if you have any shortcomings, they are to be pardoned. There is nothing wrong with you also trying to find another job. However, do not despair of Allah's mercy and do not think that the response is slow in coming. Perhaps it is best for you. Salat al-lstikhaara is a sunnah and virtuous act. Perhaps Allah knows that you staying in that job is better for you although you personally dislike it.

"And it may be that you dislike a thing which is good for you and that you like a thing which is bad for you Allah Knows but you do not Knows. (al-Baqarah 216)1

Shaikh ibn Jibreen


Footnote

1. Verse added by publisher


Back to Index



print this page bookmark this page

preloaded image preloaded image preloaded image preloaded image preloaded image