Clarification on Hijab

Assalamu aleykum,

I need some clarification concerning :

1.  What punitive measures can be meted out to Muslim women  for not wearing
hijab or for exposing any or part of that which should not be exposed.?
References form Quran and Hadith will be appreciated.

2.  Same as above but for Muslim male?

3.  Does any circumstance ( say job interviews, social exclusion ) exist
when Muslim female may not wear Hijab outside of their homes and when not in
the midst of dhi-muharram ( ie. blood brothers, uncles etc)? We know that
health reasons may be "grounds" for  abortion et al.

4. Can women give public lectures ( islamic or scientific ) directly  to a
mixed but separate audience? If this is not allowed can they deliver the
lectures indirectly via TV monitors, screens, radios etc.  Example, the
woman lecturer can be talking directly to the women audience while the male
audience can be LISTENING in another hall via modern technologies.

I hope I can get some clear responsee on the above.
Jazzakullah Khair

Moyijo Fulbe


Assalamu Alaikum.

Hijab is indeed one of the most sensitive issues of Islam that Allah -subhanahu wa taala- has put as a trial to Us. It affects Men and Women equally. The Believer and the non-believer also. To the disbeliever it’s hell. Very intolerable. To the believer it’s an injunction he drives pleasure in worshiping his Lord with. And a lot of others fall within the spectrum, each according to the power or weakness of his faith.

A western thinker was quoted as saying that the West cannot succeed over the Muslims until when it is able to remove the hijab from the Muslim woman and then cover the Quran with it.  And in recent times there was a roar over some female university students wearing the headscarf in turkey. In fact no statement can over emphasize the prejudice. One thus could understand why some Muslims this day try to give a compromising ruling on the issue in trying to please people by concocting lies against Allah and his Prophet.

The prescription of hijab during the time of the prophet went through stages just like the prohibition of alcohol. If one thus quotes the following verse as evidence that alcohol is only forbidden during prayers:”O ye who believe! Draw not near unto prayer when ye are drunken, till ye know that which ye utter, nor when ye are polluted, save when journeying upon the road, till ye have bathed. And if ye be ill, or on a journey, or one of you cometh from the closet, or ye have touched women, and ye and not water, than go to high clean soil and rub your faces and your hands (therewith). Lo! Allah is Benign, Forgiving.‏” [4/43], that will be considered a misguidance. So the same when one quotes instances when there was a mixing of both sexes during the time of the prophet before the prescription of hijab towards the end of the fifth year after hijra.  From then on there was no more mingling even in times of travel. This lead to the incidence of lies against Aisha the wife of the prophet in the sixth year when she was left behind because the man who pulls her camel thought she was inside her howdah [camel litter] were as she has gone out of it looking for her jewel that dropped.

The prophet was narrated as saying “The woman is pudendum [aurah], when ever she goes out the Satan looks up to her”. [tirmizi]. Malik then ruled base on this hadeeth and others, that the VOICE of a woman is ‘Aurah’ therefore it is haram to listen to it with the aim to be enjoyed. Allah said: {O Consorts of the Prophet ye are not like any of the (other) women: if ye do fear (God), be not too complaisant of speech, lest one in whose heart is a disease should be moved with desire: but speak ye a speech (that is) just}.‏[33/32]. 

Men are no doubt moved by the feminine voice. Even by a woman’s movement and dalliance. Muslim narrated from jabir that “The prophet [peace be upon him] saw a woman, then went to his wife zainab, she was then cleaning a new goat skin of hers, then he satisfied his needs [from her], then went out to his companions and said: Women come and go in the shape of Satan, therefore who ever among you sees a woman he should go to his family, for that will remove away what is in his mind”

In light of the above, it is easy to see why Islam has chosen the home and child-upbringing as the best role for a woman.  (And stay quietly in your houses, and make not a dazzling, display, like that of the former Times of Ignorance; and establish regular Prayer, and give regular Charity; and obey God and His apostle. And God Only wishes to remove all abomination from you, Ye Member of the family, and to make you pure spotless.‏}33/33.

The prophet [peace be upon him] has prophesied the ‘metamorphosis’ the Muslim women will undergo in the end of the world. Muslim narrated the prophet saying:” Two kinds of companion of the Hell I have not seen. Men with lashes/whips like the tails of cows beating people. Women dressed, nude, attractive to men, attracted by men, their heads like an inclined hump of a he-camel, they will never enter the paradise, nor will they smell it’s sent. And its fragrance can be found from the distance of so and so.” Ahmad bin Hanbal also narrated the prophet as saying:” Before the hour, greetings will be for the known [i.e. not to strangers], trading will spread until a woman will help her husband in trading and foe between relatives”. Ahmad also narrated from jabir: he said the prophet came on one of the lava fields of medina and we were together with him, then he said: “what a good land medina is, when Dajjal will come out, all the passes leading to medina will have an angle at them so he will not enter it, then when its like that, the city will quake with its people three times until no hypocrite man or woman will be left without going out to meet Dajjal and the most in number that will go out to meet him are the women  ...  ”

This looks just like a prophesy of women libs. Worldwide women are echoing it. Statistics has shown that one out of every Four American woman is raped. And virtually all were at least once sexually harassed in their lifetime. But still they are mesmerized by this new found ‘freedom’.

Islam stands both corrective and punitive. So what is the punishment for a man or a woman that exposes any part of his/her body that is considered private? This is an offence that the Law has left the Leader to decide what is the best punishment that should be mated out to such people with the view of deterring others from committing it. It does differ from community to community. From the forgoing it will become clear that there is absolutely no excuse for a woman to go out without:

1.    A lawful reason, which will be left to her conscience.

2.    Properly applying the hijab, which may exclude the face and both palms if she is not attractive.

3.    Avoid fragrances.

4.    Avoid shaking and chatting with men.

5.    Avoid being in seclusion with men.

It is therefore very irrelevant for a woman to stand in front of men lecturing them except of course if necessity demands that or if she falls into the group below:

{Such elderly women as are past the prospect of marriage, there is no blame on them if they lay aside their (outer) garments, provided they make not a wanton display of their beauty: but it is best for them to be modest: and God is One Who sees and knows all things}[24/60]}



Amin aleykumussalam,

Many thanks for your kind explanation on my questions. I was hoping that
some more comments may flow in but form the look of things yours has
encompasses all other opinions.

I fully agree with what is written on the importance and relevance of Hijab
and I will leave the issue of "minimal" exposure for the sake of survival to
the consensus of Ulema to identify if there may be some accomodation  in the
verse  ( Surat Al Mumin)  where women are instructed to "........ lower ther
gaze and cover thier necks, bossoms etc...." since as you qouted the saying
of the Prophet (SAW) that a woman is pudendum (aurah)!  - thanks for the new
word !. It is the same like the mortgage issue in the west, I suppose.

 What I am trying to get to is the heart of the argument usually offered by
those you rightly refer to as inclining to " compromise".   My main concern
is on women lecturers because of obvious implications on the future of our
very well educated sisters, daughters etc. You pointed out that the
exception to prohibtion to women lecturers is only those who are  " ... past
the prospect of marriage ... " and I comment as follows:

From my very limited knowledge and understanding of the sense of the seerah
particualrly on Aisha ( RA) , ( I blame the " terminal degree" fervour for
this ! LOL ( laugh out loud )  I found out the following :

1.  She married the Prophet (SAW) when she was 9 years old and was 18 years
when the Prophet (SAW) passed away. This may be news to some of us on the
web , but please before you say anything go and dust out your books to check
this !

2. Aisha (RA) narrated almost 90% ( to various Sahabas RA)  of the hadeeth
concerning domestic life of the Prophet (SAW) as evident from Vol 6 of the
works of Imam Hanbali ( RA) among others.  I have no doubts she had her
Hijab at all times.

3.   Aisha (RA), was  according to many narrations  ".. the BEST person with
the knowledge of  legal, shariah, medicine and the BEST ORATOR....." because
ALL of the Sahabas concur to this. This a great feat for an 18 year old !.
>From this  it can be assumed or interpreted by the "compromise" scholars
 please correct me here ) that Aisha (RA)  did met, gave lectures to female
and mixed audience in and outside her home. We are all aware of the hadeeth
that implore us and especially our sisters to follow in the glaring example
of the Wives (RA ) of the prophet  (SAW) for theirs is the best of example.

4. Another likely area where a "compromise" conclusion can be offered is
the sense of the hadeeth where the prophet (SAW) is reported as saying the
..." best rows for MEN are in the front while the best rows for WOMEN are in
the back..." an analyses of this and other narrations  alongside the fact
that during the life of the prophet (SAW) women went to the mosque to pray
and there was NO physical barrier between the sexes in the mosque ( I hope
am correct ) and also they attended circles.  It may be argued here that
there was some controlled and limited  mixing of the sexes.  I hope this
should not be seen as, making it permissible at all times and locations.

With these in mind, I would urge you and anyone amongst us to please give us
a few moments of their time to examine your previous position on .. " those
past marriage ... "  may  give public lectures because from the foregoing
there may be room for argument that an 18 year old orator ( say 25 years)
is in high demand in the matrimonial market. Please   comment on these
points so as to preempt the possibility of going for the  "compromise"  and
we ALL become a more informed Ummah.

Seeking for more knowlegde and Jazzakullah Khair.

Moyijo Fulbe