Dan’s Course on Islam

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Rulings on Women

Ask-Imam is an online site providing authoritative rulings on all matters pertaining to Islam. It can be accessed through the website of al-Jamiah al-Islamiyyah Darul Uloom, Bolton. It carries extensive rulings on women. Here are some examples:

  • Women may not attend mixed-gender universities. Men should try to avoid them.

  • Masturbation for women and men is a "filthy and evil practice."

  • Rather than study, women should remain at home unless forced to go outside.

  • A woman who has been raped is jointly responsible for the crime with the man who raped her if she "does not cover properly and wears revealing clothing, which seduces men."

  • Men have authority over women. A woman is not permitted to serve as the head of any organization.

  • Female circumcision [female genital mutilation] is commendable (mustahabb).

  • A Muslim woman may not marry a non-Muslim man.

  • Women must speak to men in stern voices [in order to avoid using soft, "seductive" tones that may incite lust].

  • Men are more intelligent than women.

  • There must be no free mixing of men and women.

  • The Western view of sexual equality is false, claiming that a woman can do what a man can do.

  • It is not permissible for strange males and females to talk to one another without any valid Shar'ee excuse. If there is a valid reason, the talk should be restricted to the necessity. In that situation too, it is prohibited for the female to talk in a soft and alluring tone as that conduct excites a male's passion. And Allah Knows Best. Mufti Ebrahim Desai.

  • Allah has bestowed on man the capability to rule, become prime minister/ president or simply speaking as a leader of any community. Allah mentions, "Men are overseers over women" (Qur'an). Men are meant to go out into the world and seek a living, unlike women who are embodiments of concealment. They are not meant to go out into the world and become public figures. It is in the home where the honor, respect, and dignity of women lie. Today, pandemonium has broken out because women have emerged from their homes. Women are being treated as advertisement tools. They are being used disgracefully to market even the pettiest item. Therefore, women are urged to return to their abodes, live or mingle with them; the legal punishment for adultery is stoning.

"Music, Chess, and Other Sins"

Middle East Quarterly
Summer 2009, pp. 78-82



Temporary Marriage is Allowable

Maide 5:87.....O ye who believe! Make not unlawful the good things which Allah hath made lawful for you, but commit no excess; for Allah loveth not those given in excess.
Bukhari 5.87 & 7.62.130.....We used to participate in the holy battles led by Allah’s Apostle and we had nothing (no wives) with us. So we said, “Shall we get ourselves castrated?” He forbade us that and then allowed us to marry women with a temporary contract.”
Bukhari 7.62.52.....While we were in an army, Allah’s apostle came to us and said, “You have been allowed to do the Mut’a (marriage), so do it.” Salama bin al-Akwa’ said: Allah’s Apostle said, “If a man and a woman agree (to marry temporarily), their marriage should last for three nights, and if they like to continue, they can do so; and if they want to separate, they can do so.” I do not know whether that was only for us or for all the people in general. Abu Abdullah (al-Bukhari) said: “‘Ali made it clear that the Prophet said, ‘The Mut’a marriage has been canceled (made unlawful).”
Bukhari 9.86.91.....’Ali was told that Ibn ‘Abbas did not see any harm in the Mut’a marriage. ‘Ali said, “Allah’s Apostle forbade the Mut’a marriage on the Day of the battle of Khaibar and he forbade the eating of donkey’s meat.” Some people said, “If one, by a tricky way, marries temporarily, his marriage is illegal.” Others said, “The marriage is valid but its condition is illegal.”
“Whether temporary marriges were cancelled or are still permitted is disputed among the different sects of Islam. The Shi’ite sect allows temporary marriages, but the Sunni sect does not.”

Dr. Ergun & Emir Caner, Voices Behind the Veil, p. 78.

“The... Arab custom called mut’a, which is a “marriage of pleasure”, or a “temporary marriage”. Such a marriage can last from one hour to ninety-nine years. When a man indicates to the woman that the temporary marriage is over, the two part company without a divorce ceremony. The Sunni sect of Islam, which dominates Saudia Arabia, considers such a practice immoral, condeming the arrangement as nothing more than legalized prostitution. Still, no legal authority would deny a man the right to such an arrangement... The Kor’an... says, ‘You are permitted to seek out wives with your wealth, in decorous conduct, but not in fornication, but give them a reward for what you have enjoyed of them in keeping with your promise.’ While this verse is interpreted by the Shiite sect of the Muslim faith as endorsement of the practice, these temporary unions are not common with the Sunni Muslims.” Jean Sasson, Princess Sultana’s Daughters, pp. 23-24.

The Marriage Contract
İmam Malik: declares the marriage contract is a contract of ownership of the benefit of the sexual organ of the woman and the rest of her body.
İmam Şhafi’i: The most accepted view is that what has been contracted upon is the woman, that is the benefit derived from her sexual organ. According to this view the wife can not demand sex from her husband because it is his right (not hers).
İmam Abu Hanifa: The right of sexual pleasures belongs to the man, not the woman, by that it is meant that the man has the right to force the woman to gratify himself sexually. She on the other hand does not have the right to force him to have sex with her except once (in a lifetime). But he must, from a religious point of view, have sex with her to protect her from being morally corrupt.
İmam İbn Hanbal: holds the view that the wife can demand to have sex with the husband.
W.L. Cati Married to Muhammad, pp. 71-72.

The Woman is a Prisoner in Her Husband’s Home
The support of the woman (nafaqa) is obligatory on the man in return for the woman being locked up in the man’s house, and for being exclusively his.
W.L. Cati Married to Muhammad, p. 66.

The Woman is Seen as a Sort of Slave
The woman must also know that she is like a slave to her husband, so she should not do anything affecting herself or her husband’s wealth except with his permission.
W.L. Cati Married to Muhammad, p. 62.
The great Muslim scholar and philopher Ghazali... some seven hundred years ago... summed up the situation as follows: “The most satisfying and final word on the matter is that marriage is a form of slavery. The woman is man’s slave and her duty therefore is absolute obedience to the husband in all that he asks of her person.”... The belief that the wife is the slave of the man is also shared by great scholars such as Razi and İbn al-‘Araby... by virture of the payment of the dowry.
Dr. John Ankerberg, Fast Facts on Islam, p. 60.

The Woman’s Obedience to the Husband

is Her Key to Paradise
All the woman’s piety is considered useless if she disobeys her husband. Her disobedience to her husband represents an unlawful and irrational act. But obedience to her husband is the key to Paradise, as is clear from the following Hadith by Musnad Ahmad, 21275, 21318 (Ihya’ Al-Turath’s numbering system).
“...Whosoever female dies while her husband is pleased with her, will enter Paradise.” “The Prophet once said to a woman: ‘Watch how you treat your husband for he is your Paradise and your Hell.’”
“I came to Allah’s messenger (SAW) for some need, so he asked, ‘You there! Are you married?’ I replied, ‘Yes.’ He then asked, ‘How are you towards your husband?’ She responded, ‘I do not fall short in his service except with regared to what I am unable to do.’ He said, ‘Then look to your standing with him, for indeed he is your Paradise and your Fire.” (Sahih, reported by al-Haadim and others)
Dr. John Ankerberg, Fast Facts on Islam, p. 57.

W.L. Cati Married to Muhammadi, p. 86.


Veiling or “Purdah”

There are three grades of Purdah (veiling):

1. The first is that the woman covers every part of her body except her face, her hands, and her feet.

2. The second is that the woman covers her face, her hands, and her feet also.

3. The third is that woman keeps herself indoors or keeps herself hidden in such a veil that no-one can ever see her clothes. This stage is the greatest of all the three.

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