differnce between a man and a womans salat

Last updated: 6th February 2007
Question ID: #3751
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aishah
6th February 2007

 
IS THERE A DIFFERNCE IN THE WAY A MAN AND WOMAN PERFORMS SALAT,
[ SUCH AS THEWAY TO DO SAJOOD]

AND IF THERE IS WHAT IS THE CORRECT WAY FOR AWOMAN TO PERFORM SALAT.PLEASE GIVE WITH EVIDENCE OF HADEETH,AS I HAVE BEEN TOLD THAT PEOPLE IN THE SUBCONTINENT HAVE NOT BEEN DOING IT CORRECTLY.



Answer
Bismillah

Al-jawab billahi at-taufeeq (the answer with Allah's guidance)


Below is an extract from 'The Salah Of Women,' published by Madrasah Arabiyyah Islamiyah (Aazadville). I hope this will answer your questions.


Imam Bayhaqi has mentioned a principle which is the basis of the differences found in the salah of males and females.

He says:

"The separating factor between the laws of salah of males and females is that of concealment . A woman is commanded to do all those actions which are more concealing for her. " (as-Sunan al-Kubra alil-Bayhaqi: vol. 2 p 222)

When a woman stands in prayer her feet should be kept close to eachother, as it is mentioned above, 'A woman is commanded to do all those actions which are more concealing for her.' This ruling also applies for placing the feet close to eachother whilst in Sujood.

RAISING THE HANDS

Hafidh Nur ud-Din Haythami states:

Wa'il ibn Hajr states that Rasulullah said to him, "O Ibn Hajr, when you perform salah, raise your hands till your ears while a woman should raise her hands till her chest . "

(Majma' uz-Zawaa'id: vol. 2 p 103, and I'laa us-Sunan: vol. 2 p 156)

Imam Abu Bakr Ibn Abi Shaybah narrates:

"Abd Rabbih Ibn Zaytun said that he saw Umm ud-Dardaa raising her hands parallel to her shoulders when beginning salah. "

(al-Musannaf li-Ibn Abi Shaybah: vol. 1 p 239)

Ibn Abi Shaybah has also narrated:

"`Ataa was asked how a woman should raise her hands in salah. He replied that she should raise them till her breast " (Ibid)

Based at Makkah, Ataa [the great Follower (tabi`i) and imam] used to issue this fatwa.

Ibn Abi Shaybah narrates:

"Hammad ibn Salamah al-Basri used to say that a woman should raise her hands parallel to her breast when beginning salah. "

(Ibid)

Hammad was based at Kufa and he used to issue this fatwa.

The narration of Ibn Jurayj has been mentioned as follows:

Ibn Jurayj said, "I asked Ataa whether a woman should gesture with her hands like a male when making takbir. Ataa replied that she should not raise her hands like a male. Then he practically indicated with his hands how it should be done by lowering his hands and drawing them very close to his body. Then he said, "In the raising of the hands, a woman is unlike a man . And if she leaves that, there is no harm. ""

The Muslim Ummah continued this practice over the centuries. Imam Zuhri used to issue the same fatwa in Madinah.

PLACING THE HANDS

Allamah Abdul-Hayy Luckhnawi writes:

"As for women, the jurists are unanimous that it is sunnah for them to place their hands on their bosoms. "

(as-Si'aayah: vol. 2 p 152)

There is Ijmaa' on this Mas'alah.

RUKU

It is stated in the Fataawaa Aalamgiriyyah:

"As for a female she must bend slightly in Ruku' without spreading her fingers out. She must keep them together on her knees by merely placing the palms. She must bend her knees slightly and not spread her arms out."


SAJDAH

Imam Abu Dawud has narrated the following hadith in his Maraaseel:


"Yazid ibn Abi Habib states that Rasulullah passed by two women who were performing their salah. He said to them, "When you prostrate, then make the parts of your body touch the ground because a woman is unlike a man in these aspects. " (Maraaseel Abi Dawud p 118; and its like in as-Sunan al-Kubra alil- Bayhaqi: vol. 2 p 223)

Imam Bayhaqi narrates the following hadith:

Abdullah Ibn Umar reports that Rasulullah said, "When a woman sits during Salah, she should place her one thigh over the other and when she prostrates, she must attach the stomach to her thighs so that is more concealing for her. Indeed, Allah looks at her and tells the angels, "O My angels! Bear witness that I have forgiven her. ""

(As-Sunan al-Kubra alil-Bayhaqi: vol. 2 p 223)

Imam Abu Bakr Ibn Abi Shaybah narrates the following statement of Ali:

"It is reported that Ali said: "When a woman performs Salah, she must practise Ihtifaaz and keep her thighs close together. ""

(al-Musannaf li-Ibn Abi Shaybah: vol. 1 p 270, and it has been taken many ways, Abdur-Razzaq has taken it from Isra'il from Abu Is'haq from Harith from Ali and Ibn Abi Shaybah took it from Abul-Ahwas from Abu Is'haq and Bayhaqi took it from Abul-Ahwas, with the mentioned Sanad)

Imam Abdur-Razzaq has quoted the following Hadith in his Musannaf:

Ali says, "When a woman prostrates, she must practise ihtifaaz and keep her thighs close to her stomach. "

(al-Musannaf li-Abdir-Razzaq: vol. 3 p 138)

"Ihtifaaz": to lean on one side and rest on the posterior.

(See Lugaat al-Hadith: vol. 1 p 98)

The following narration has been quoted by Bayhaqi:

"Ali said: " When a woman performs Sajdah she must keep her thighs close together. ""

(as-Sunan al-Kubra alil-Bayhaqi: vol. 2 p 222)

The following narration appears in Kanz ul-Ummal:

"Ibn Umar states that when a woman prostrates, she must let her stomach touch her thighs in order to make herself completely concealed. "

(Kanz ul-Ummal: vol. 4 p 117)

Imam Ibn Abi Shaybah narrates:

"Ibrahim says that when a woman prostrates she should join her thighs to her stomach without raising her posterior and without stretching her limbs out like a male. "

(al-Musannaf li-Ibn Abi Shaybah: vol. 1 p 270)

The following words have been narrated by Ibrahim Nakha'i:

"Ibrahim said that when a woman prostrates she must draw her thighs inwards and place her stomach on them. " (Ibid)

Mujaahid:

"Muhaahid used to dislike that a man attach his stomach to his thighs as a woman does. "

(Ibid)

Hasan al-Basri:

"Hishaam reports from Hasan who says that woman should draw herself closely together in Sajdah. "

(Ibid)

Imam Abdur-Razzaq narrates:

Ibrahim says, "A woman used to be commanded to place her arm and her stomach on her thigh when she goes into Sajdah and not to spread her limbs out as a male does so that her buttocks are not raised. "

(al-Musannaf li-Abdir-Razzaq: vol. 3 p 138)

Allamah Muhammad Taahir al-Gujaraati narrates:

"When a lady performs salah, she must contract herself when she sits down and when she goes into sajdah and she must not spread her limbs out. "

(Majma' Bihar l-Anwaar: vol. 1 p 521)

Based on these narrations, the Fuqahaa have issued the following ruling:

"A woman should contract herself in Sajdah and join her stomach to her thighs because this is more concealing for her. "

(al-Hidaayah: vol. 1 p 53)

THE SITTING POSITION

It is mentioned in the Musnad of Imam Abu Hanifah (RA):

"Abdullah ibn Umar was asked how women performed their Salah during the era of Rasulullah. He replied that initially they performed Tarabbu'. Then they were ordered to themselves close together and lean onto one side by resting on their left buttocks and completely contracting themselves. "

(Jaami' ul-Masaaneed: vol. 1 p 400)

Taraabu' is to sit cross legged. This narration indicates that initially the women sat in the position of Tarabbu' but this command was later abrogated and they were ordered to draw themselves close together and lean onto one side by resting on their left buttocks and completely contracting themselves.

Sheikh Abuíl-Wafaa Afghaani writes:

"This is the most authentic narration of this chapter i.e. the sitting position of women . It is for this reason that Imam Abu Hanifah has made it the basis of his Madh'hab. "

(Ta'leeqash-Sheikh Abul-Wafaa Afghaani ala Kitab il-Aathaar lil-Imam Muhammad ash-Shaybaani: vol. 1 p 208)

Abu Bakr Ibn Abi Shaybah narrates:

When Ibn Abbas was asked about the Salaah of a woman, he replied, "She must draw herself close together and lean onto one side by resting on her left buttock. "

(al-Musannaf li-Ibn Abi Shaybah: vol. 1 p270)

in another narration of Musannaf Ibn Abi Shaybah (vol . 1 p270), one finds the following words:

Ibrahim said: "A woman should sit in Salah as a man does. "

This quotation indicates permissibility. However, Naasir ud-Din al-Albaani has interpolated the words of this narration thus:

"A woman should so as a man does in Salah. "

(Sifatu Salatin-Nabiy p 207)

This interpolation has clearly changed the meaning of the words and is a misleading act.

The following narration is also quoted by Ibn Abi Shaybah:

Khalid ibn Lajlaaj said that women were commanded with Tarabbu' when they sat in Salah and they should not sit like men on their buttocks. That is in order that nothing happens. "

(al-Musannaf li-Ibn Abi Shaybah: vol. 1 p 270)

The Fuqahaa took these narrations into consideration and delivered

the following ruling:

"A woman should sit on her left buttock and position her legs out on her right hand side because that is more concealing for her. "

(al-Hidaayah: vol. 1 p 55)

The above narrations indicate that Ibrahim Nakha'i used to issue the Fatwa in Kufain accordance with this practise, while in Madinah Mujhaahid did likewise as did Hasan Basri in Basrah.

These Ahaadith and Aathaar clearly indicate that the Salah of females differs from that of males.


And Only Allah Ta'ala Knows Best.

Mufti
Answer last updated on:
25th August 2007
Answered by:
Ulamaa ID 04
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