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Chapter: Types of haj

Types of haj | 4. Haj for women

Haj for women
In the narration of a Hadith by Hadrat Abu Saeed Khudri Radhiallahuta’la Anhu it has been found that the Prophet sallallaahu alaihi wasallam said: “It is not permissible for a woman to travel alone on a journey of more than three days.” (Tabrani, Al-Muajjam Al-Aousath, 6:267, Number 6376).
Hadrat Abu Umamah Baahali RadhiAllahuta’la anhu narrates that the Holy Prophet sallallaahu alaihi wasallam said: “It is not permissible for a Muslim woman to perform Hajj without her husband or without any mahram” (Ibn Khazeemah Al-sahih, 4:134, number : 2522), (Tabrani, al-Muajjam Al-Kabeer, 8:261, Number :8016)

It has been explained in the light of these ahadith and commandments of the Shariah according to the prevailing laws of Saudi Arabia that without  maharam, no women is being issued with a visa for Hajj.  Hence, in these days, it is not possible for a woman to perform Hajj or Umrah without a maharam.

01-    Question:   Who are accounted to be Maharam?

          Answer:      The maharam to accompany a woman for Hajj or Umrah are :

Father, Paternal Grand Father Maternal Grand Father, Paternal Grandson, Maternal Grandson, Brother, nephew, sister’s son, Uncle, Father in Law. Except these all others are not Mahram, may it be elder or younger Brothers-in-Law, Sons of Paternal or Maternal aunts and sister’s husband.

02-    Question:   Can a woman perform Hajj without the permission of her husband?

Answer:      Hajj is also an obligation on the part of a woman like on the man. Hence, for the performance of Hajj, a woman need not have permission from her husband.  It is better to perform this obligation as immediately as possible.  The holy Prophet said:  “Should not obey anyone for disobeying Allahuta’la”.  Hence, once the necessary means are present, a woman should perform Hajj, the obligation on her part. (Ibn Shabibah, Al-Musannif, Kitab Al-Jihad, Number: 33046)

03-    Question:   Can a woman go for Hajj during the period of her Iddath (waiting period in seclusion)?

Answer:      If a woman is in her iddath, (waiting period in seclusion), she cannot go for Hajj.  It has been mentioned in Al-Qur’an : “And do not send them out from their homes.”  Hence, the Iddath may have been due to her husband’s death or due to divorce, she cannot go for Hajj during this time.

04-    Question:   With respect to the Shariah, during the journey of Hajj or Umrah, could the use of medicines for delaying or stopping the menstrual cycle be permissible?

Answer       Yes!  In order to remain clean in such a holy journey, women could use such medicines. When it was asked to Hadrat Abdullah Bin Umar RadhiAllahuta’la Anhu that “Could a woman use such a medicine where she could remain clean till she comes back from Hajj?  He said: “I do not feel to have any reservation on this.  For this purpose, the juice of pilu (a sort of miswak tree, botanical name “salvadora persica”) seems to be the best!

05-    Question:  What is the difference between the Ihram of a man and of a woman?

Answer       A man cannot wear stitched cloths as Ihram, whereas it is permissible for a woman to wear stitched cloths, as if she used to be in her normal cloths.  However, she has to keep her face visible (uncovered) because the Ihram for woman is in her face, hence she has to cover the head with her scarf.  Whereas the Ihram for a man is in his face and on the head.  Hence, a man should not cover both, the face and the head.

06-    Question:   Can a woman wear Ihram while she is menstruating?

Answer       Yes!  She can wear Ihram while she is in the state of menstruation. Hadrat Ibn Abbas RadhiAllahuta’ala Anhu narrates that the menstruating women could take bath and wear Ihram and perform all rituals of Hajj, except performing Tawaf (circumambulation) of the holy Ka’bah, till they become clean. (Tirmizi Al-Jamea Al-Sahih, Chapter Maja, Taqzi Al-Haidh Minalmanasik, 3:282, Number 946).

07-    Question:   During the Hajj, which of the rituals a menstruating woman can perform and which cannot?

Answer:      During the Hajj, a menstruating woman can stay at Mina, Arafah and Muzdalifah and do Dhikr.  She can perform Rami and give Sacrifice.  Apart from this she could sit at the outer courtyard of the mosque, do Dhikr, ask Supplications etc.  But she cannot perform Tawaf (circumambulation).

          The holy Prophet sallallaahu alaihi wasallam said about the women who are in the state of menstruation that:

          “They could perform all rituals (of Hajj) except Tawaf (circumambulation)”.

          (Ibn Majah Al-Sunan, Kitaab Al-Manasik,Baab Al-Haaiz, Tawdha Al-Manasik Al-Tawaf 3:447 – 448, Number:2963)

08-    At the holy Harmain Sharifain few women perform Jama’a salah (prayers in congregation) with the men.  What is the ruling about this?

Answer       At the holy Harmain Sharifain Mosques those women who come with the men during the time of the prayers proceed inside along with them, though there is place allotted specifically for women. But specifically during the Hajj season, due to the unlimited rush, they remain unable to reach their place thus, stay in between men and start to pray.  This is not permissible.

          It must be remembered that it would be better for them even in Makkah Mukarramah and in Madina Munawwara to pray at home in the same way they pray at home in their respective countries, without Jama’a. The virtues got by men in Masjid-e- Haram and Masjid Nabwi sallallaahu alaihi wasallam is also available for women who pray at home.  Hence, while staying there, they must pray in their place itself.  However, in order to perform Tawaf at the holy Haram Sharif, and to submit salaam to the Prophet sallallaahu alaihi wasallam, they may present at the holy Masjid-e-Nabwi.  And during this period if the prayer time comes, they could pray with Jama’a in the place allotted for them.

          But, it must be remembered that by chance if any woman caught in between the rows during prayer times, she could sit silently without taking part in the congregation prayers with the men. If she prays with the men, then the prayer of men standing each at the right, left and at the back would become invalid.  Hence, when the imam completes the prayers, she can go separately in her place and pray over there.

          If the prayer time comes during Tawaf (circumambulation), finish the Tawaf quickly and go over to the allotted place for women for prayers to pray with congregation.  If that is not possible, then leave performing Tawaf and pray at the allotted place and after the prayers, continue to complete the Tawaf from where it was left.

09-    Question:   In order to maintain hijab, if a woman wants to hide her face with anything like a hand fan, and such time the fan covers her forehead, nose or mouth, what would be the ruling for this condition?

Answer       It is narrated by Hadrat Ibn Umar RadhiAllahuta’ala anhu saying that the holy Prophet sallallaahu alaihi wasallam said: “In the state of Ihram, a woman should not wear the face veil and gloves.”  (Tirmizi, Al-Jaame’Al-Sahih, Baab Maajah fi malakouz lil mahram, 3:194-195, Number 833).

          In order to veil her face if a woman use anything like hand fan, then she should be careful not to cover her face, mouth, nose etc., because if the thing used covers or remains touching her face, a Sadaqah (penalty) equal to a sadaqah fitr becomes wajib (obligatory) on her part.

10-    In the state of Ihram the misconception of women and its compensation

          During the time of Umrah or Hajj or before completing the same, if any man happens to see the face of the women, or if she removes the scarf, no Dam or Kaffarah (Penalty) is applicable.  In the state of Ihram wearing a veil and gloves is prohibited.  The holy Prophet sallallaahu alaihi wasallam said: “The woman wearing Ihram should neither veil nor wear the hand gloves.” (Bukhari: 1741).

          Note:  “Veil means the piece of cloth which is put on the face, having holes to see through eyes”

          However, during the time of Hajj or Umrah, in place of veil and gloves, the women could wear scarf and any type of dress which covers their bodies, because though the veil and gloves are prohibited in the state of Ihram, hijab must be observed before the strangers.  For doing this, in place of veil any other cloth could be hanged from the head downwards.  This would prove not to be a veil while maintaining hijab.  This was the practice of Sahabiath also.  There is a narration of Hadrat Syedah Ayesha RadhiAllahu anha that “While we go out with the holy Prophet sallallaahu alaihi wasallam in the state of Ihram, and if we met any caravan, we used to hang a cloth over our faces.  (Abu Dawood:1833)

11-    Question:   Can a woman say Talbiah at a higher pitch like men do?

Answer:      No! A woman cannot say Talbiah at a higher pitch like men do.  However, she could say Talbiah in such a way that she only could hear this.

12-    If a woman cuts her hair while she is in the state of Ihram, what is the ruling for this ?

Answer:      If a women cuts her hair in the state of Ihram to the extent of one joint of the index finger, covering her entire head or one-fourth of the head, then she has to give sacrifice of a lamb or goat and if she cuts less than the specified length of hair she can give wheat of half measure equal to sadaqah fitr or its value in cash.

13-    If a woman starts menstruating during the time of Tawaf (circumambulation), what would be the ruling for this?

Answer:      If a woman starts menstruating during the time of Tawaf (circumambulation), she should forthwith abandon performing Tawaf.  If that was a Tawaf for Umrah or Hajj, she could continue after she gets cleaned.  If that was of a Nafil Tawaf, then it should be done afresh on her becoming clean. This is because if any Nafil performance abandoned after the start, it is not necessary to complete the same.

14-    Question:   If a woman performs Tawaf (circumambulation) in the state of her menstruation or without wodu (ablution), what is the ruling for this?

Answer:      If a woman performs a complete Tawaf (circumambulation) or four rounds in the state of her menstruation or without wodu (ablution)  then a Dam (penalty) is applicable.  If she does perform Tawaf of less than four rounds or without wodu (ablution), then she has to give sadaqah for each round of Tawaf she performed.

15-    Do the women perform Ramal like the men do?

Answer:      No!  The women do not perform Ramal like the men do.  This is sunnah only for men.

16-    Is it a condition to be clean from the state of Menstruation to stay at Arafah.

Answer       No!  During the Hajj time, Menstruation does not hinder these rituals from being performed:  Staying at Ararah, staying at Muzdalifah and Rami of the Jumrath.

17-    Question:   During the Hajj, what is the measure a woman could have her hair cut?

Answer:      It is necessary for a woman to have her hair cut to the extent of a joint of the index finger.  Hadrat Abndullah Bin Abbas RadhiAllahu Anhuma narrates that the holy Prophet sallallaahu alaihi wasallam said: “Shaving of head is not for women. For them cutting the hair to the extent of one joint of the finger is enough.”

          Women would get the same amount of virtues as per the men who are required to shave the entire head.

18-    Question:   What is the ruling for a woman who menstruate prior to Tawaf Ziarah?

Answer:      If a woman menstruate prior to Tawaf Ziarah, do not perform the Tawaf and wait till she becomes clean, though the days of sacrifice may pass, no Dam (penalty) would become applicable for this delay. However, during the period of sacrifice, if she becomes clean and had time to perform most of the rounds of Tawaf, but she delayed, then a Dam (penalty) becomes applicable. If she has completed the stay at Arafah and Tawaf Ziarah and then  during the time of Tawaf Wida’a (Farewell Tawaf) if she menstruate, then Tawaf Wida’a considered to be complete, and no fidya or penalty would become obligatory on her part.

          It has been narrated by Hadrat Ayesha RadhiAllahuta’la Anha that it was informed to the holy Prophet sallallaahu alaihi wasallam that Hadrat Safiah Bint Habba was menstruating during the days of Mina.  The Prophet sallallaahu alaihi wasallam said: ‘Is she going to hold us back?”  Sahaba kiraam said: “She has completed the Tawaf Ziarah.  The holy Prophet said: “Now it is alright”.  It has been narrated by Hadrat Ayesha RadhiAllahuta’la Anha that once a woman finished Tawaf Ziarah then start menstruating, and if she comes, then nothing is going to be wajib on her part. (Tirmizi, Al-Jame’a Al-Sahih, Kitaab Al-Hajj, Baab Maajah Fil Mar’a taheedh ba’dal izafa, 3:280, Number:943.