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Hijaab In Islam

Hijaab is seen as a very controversial issue and many argue that the ones ‘under cover’ are undeniably attracting the most attention, a belief which confuses the logic of Hijaab.

- How Hijaab Came To Being

- Hijaab In The Era Of Prophecy

- The Observance Of Hijaab In Time Of Difficulty

- Hijaab From A Blind Person

- The Neccessities Of Hijaab And Consequences Of Negligence

- Violations Of Hijaab

- Quranic Tafseer Upon Hijaab

- Conclusion

This article portrays a broad representation of the issues of Hijaab. Hijaab is seen as a very controversial issue and many argue that the ones ‘under cover’ are undeniably attracting the most attention, a belief which confuses the logic of Hijaab.

Firstly, the observers of Hijaab may be a minority within certain regions which is the case in many a town or city, however, this is obviously the case due to the number of Muslim sisters whom have chosen to neglect such a worthy act, and it is these very persons whom chose to voice such discouraging and demeaning statements. Such a statement however is a representation of sheer ignorance and is denial of faith which is bestowed by the All Provider: the Almighty Allah.

The observance of Hijaab will Insha’Allah reap a glorious Hereafter and uncountable benefits in this world. With anything in life determination is a much needed characteristic.

Is it not time that we allowed our faith to snub out feelings of doubt and inferiority which are merely emotions created by the forever menacing Shaitaan?

How Hijaab Came To Being

Islam being an eternal religion has thus catered for man’s life upon this world in the most stringent of ways and so Islam has not only defined the lawful from the unlawful, however, it has also made unlawful all acts/objects which would resultantly procure unlawfulness, i.e. The act of drinking alcohol has been defined as unlawful, in conjunction to this any acts/objects which could lead to the consumption of alcohol are also defined as unlawful for example the selling of alcohol, working within a brewery etc.

In the same manner adultery is unlawful within Islam and so in view of this any such acts which may lead to this e.g. Lustful gazing have also been defined as unlawful. In order that such acts are ruled out the revelations governing Hijaab were ordained upon mankind.

These revelations were revealed unto mankind within the actual era of Prophecy. This era was a period of time which held many highly ranked and pious households whom, through their piety did not allow free mingling of the opposite sex. Thus, the people of this era were the refined and decent of man however, from the very beginning the free mingling of the opposite sex was an act which held dislike and opposition.

The actual date of the revelation governing Hijaab is one of differing opinions however, Hijaab was ordained as compulsory within 3.A.H or 5.A.H.

The Holy Quran contains 7 verses altogether concerning Hijaab, 3 of these are featured within Surah Noor and 4 in Surah Ahzaab.

The Quranic Tafseer (commentary) upon these mentioned verses can be read within this booklet.

There are more than 70 invaluable Ahadith which are concerned with matters regarding Hijaab. From amongst the 7 Quranic verses, scholars are unanimous upon the fact that the verses within Surah Ahzaab were revealed before those of Surah Noor.

Hazrat Umar once suggested to the Holy Prophet that the wives of the Prophet should observe the veil as many differing persons of differing manners and natures visit the houses of the Prophet . The Holy Prophet himself found this a desirable suggestion however, he was unable to turn the suggestion into a practicality as the Prophet was in wait of divine revelation. Shortly afterwards the revelations of Hijaab were revealed successively.

The first of the revelations concerning Hijaab is as follows:

"Do not enter the houses of the Prophet unless you have been granted permission." (Surah Ahzaab)

Hijaab In The Era Of Prophecy

Many a time people have argued whether Sahaabiyaat (the female Companions of the Prophet used to observe Hijaab or not. Such arguments are predominantly centered around the actual veiling of the face, proclaiming that such an act was not alive within the Sahabiyaat. This argument however, is merely false consolation and bears little or no weight.

There are many evidential Ahadith and incidents which reinforce the observance of Hijaab and actual veiling of the female face within the era of the glorious prophecy.

Hazrat Ali narrates that once he was in the presence of the Holy Prophet when the Holy Prophet questioned, "Tell me what is the most worthy act of a woman?" Upon hearing this all the Companions of the Holy Prophet remained silent. Hazrat Ali further reports that when I returned to my house I forwarded the same question to Hazrat Fatimah . She replied, "A woman should not see any man nor should a man see her." Hazrat Ali says, "I then related this to the Holy Prophet and he stated that Fatimah is my beloved child, for this reason she has understood properly." (Musnad-e-Bazzaar)

From this Hadith we have learnt that Hijaab is the most important item in a woman’s life. The whole aim for a woman is to keep her beauty hidden so that it is not revealed to a ‘non-Mehram’ (to whom marriage is permissible) which could finally lead to evil acts.

Hazrat Aa’isha narrates that on one occasion a female fellow Muslim wanted to give a letter to the Holy Prophet , the letter was delivered to the Holy Prophet from behind a curtain. (Abu Dawood, Nasai and Mishkaat)

Considering the fact that all female believers are the daughters of the Prophet and that the Holy Prophet himself was flawless, the above incident is evidence enough of the fact that the Sahaabiyaat were observers of Hijaab.

Hazrat Umme Atiyyah has narrated that the Holy Prophet once ordered that upon the day of Eid, that even the menstruating women and the veiled girls should also join the Eid congregation (in order that the congregation may project a greater number of Muslims for onlooking non-Muslims).

Some Muslim women questioned, "If one of us does not have a veil should we still attend the congregation?"

The Holy Prophet answered, "Her (Muslim) sister should cover her in her cloak." (Mishkaat)

The Observance Of Hijaab In Time Of Difficulty

Hazrat Qais Ibne Shammas reports that Umme Khallad came to the Holy Prophet to inquire about her son who had been killed in one of the battles in the path of Allah. When she arrived she had a veil covering her face. Upon seeing this one of the Companions of the Holy Prophet said, "How is it that even under such unfortunate conditions (inspite of such grief and sorrow) you wear the Hijaab?"

Hazrat Umme Khallad replied, "If I have lost my son I have not lost my modesty." (i.e I should not lose them both)

Then the Holy Prophet replied, "Your son will gain the reward of two martyrs."

She asked, "How can this be possible?"

The Holy Prophet replied, "Because ‘Ahl-e-Kitab’ (people of the book, i.e. Jews, Christians ) have killed him." (Narration of Abu-Dawood)

From this we can learn how the Sahabiyaat (those women who saw the Holy Prophet after accepting Islam) remained firm upon the observance of Hijaab even at times of difficulty and misery.

Hijaab From A Blind Person

Hazrat Umme Salamah narrates that once Hazrat Maimoona and I were in the presence of the Holy Prophet when Hazrat Abdullah Ibne Umme Maktoom arrived. As he was blind it never occurred to us that it was necessary to observe Hijaab, therefore we remained seated. The Holy Prophet ordered us to observe Hijaab. I replied "Oh Prophet of Allah , he is unable to see us." Upon hearing this the Holy Prophet said, "Are you both also blind? Are you not casting your sight upon him?" (Mishkaat, Tirmizi and Abu Dawood)

Thus, we see the Holy Prophet ordering his wives to observe Hijaab even in the presence of a blind person.

The above highlighted incidents stand as proof enough of Hijaab in the era of Prophecy. How is it that as wrong doers we can throw wild accusations in the direction of the beloved Sahaabiyaat?

May the Almighty provide us with wilful understanding and keep us safe from joining the slanderers of this world. Aameen.

The Neccessities Of hijaab And Consequences Of Negligence

"O Prophet! Tell thy wives and thy daughters and the women of the believers to draw over them their Jilbaabs (cloaks). That in the least so that they be recognised and not be molested." (Surah Ahzaab)

"And remain within your homes and do not make an exhibition ( of your selves) like the displays (of the immoral women) of former times of ignorance." (Surah Ahzaab)

One of the fundamental principles of Islam is to establish a system of virtue, goodness and justice. For this reason Islam teaches both men and women in order to secure such a society. Amongst other things it disciplines the human urge for the opposite sex so that both sexes can live in pure wedlock and have full control over their bestial desires. To achieve this objective Islam has a code of behaviour. Breaching these codes of principles may resultantly endanger the purity and goodness of society. This code protects, wards off evil inclinations and bad influences. This observation of rules is termed as Hijaab/ Purdah.

The Prophet is reported to have said, "Verily a woman walks in the form of Shaytaan. Her approaching and recoiling are in the form of Shaytaan."

Commentary: This means that Shaitaan used women as a means to trap man into doing evil.

In another tradition the Holy Prophet said, "Verily the woman is Aurah ( anything that is concealed by shame and prudency) whenever she leaves the home, the Shaitan raises his eyes and looks towards her. When she is in the innermost part of the home it is then that she is closest to her Lord."

From the above Hadith we learn that the Shaitan used the women as his avenue to create evil in society.

In the second Hadith we learn that a woman should not be revealed to strangers and that the coming out of the home can only cause mischief as Shaitan awaits and gives her his evil and full attention.

In Islam a woman feels a great sense of security and enjoys a high status of honour and dignity within her home and out, which in a way is greater than man’s. Each sex have their own responsibility and duties to perform according to their emotional and biological nature. Her great responsibility lies in the upbringing of the nation’s next generation. On her shoulders does not lie the burden of financial problems, therefore she has no need to venture out of her home unlike the non-Muslim women.

Insecure feelings, financial, moral and physical problems have driven the non-Muslim women from the boundaries of her home. In the process she has had to abandon her modesty and dignity at the cost of moral and spiritual life, hoping that through this she can overcome her insecurity and inferiority against men.

In Islam a woman’s real worth is not accounted by exhibiting a half exposed body, or the fascination that the opposite sex has for her, rather it is by her modesty, piety and moral conduct.

The main aim of Purdah or Hijaab is to guard the spiritual and moral purity of man. Caution is taken in the very first steps so that man is prevented from plungering into the abyss of immorality and shamelessness which can be witnessed today.

The Quran reads,

“And tell the believing woman to lower their gaze and be modest.” (24.31)

The same has been ordered for man as well.

The Quran proclaims,

"Do not approach near fornication."

Shame and respect are natural qualities in man. When these cannot be found in him and his whole community, what can be the outcome of this? You only have to look around us today to witness these atrocities caused by the negligence of immodesty.

The Prophet said, "There is nothing left after me more dangerous to man than the temptations of women."

Is not the unveiling of women in our time along with the free mixing of both sexes the cause to some of the social and moral ailments? Many complain that the Hijaab enjoined upon Muslim women is far too restrictive and rigid and is in order to keep inferior to man. Ignorance and misunderstanding can only be the cause of such beliefs. Besides Islam which other religion or nation has given homes full protection from exploitation from strangers? While at the same time Islam guides women upon importance of purity and morality as well as upholding her status and dignity.

A woman is likened to a sweet creature, everything about her is an attraction for spectators. Islam protects her by enjoining her to wear Hijaab so that the covering of herself does not attract men like the swamps of flies and dirty creatures are attracted to uncovered sweets as in the case of today’s women who falls prey to this.

The Prophet was ordered to tell his wives and believing women to wear Purdah so that they could be recognised as believing women and not molested. Is this not the case of today’s women?

The Holy Prophet is reported to have said, "Every religion has a characteristic. The characteristic of Islam is modesty." (Ibn Majah)

He also said, "Verily modesty and faith are inter-related. If one is taken out the other diminishes simultaneously". (Bayhaqi)

Violations Of Hijaab

Many women today say that the wearing of veil is difficult and unimportant.

In the Holy Prophet’s era the modesty and observance of Hijaab amongst the Sahaabiyaat was at it’s peak despite the lesser need for it than today. Communities and nations progressed and were successful due to such social conduct.

The evils of shamelessness, of low morals and over liberated people are the main cause of destruction of any member or nation; as humans we all bear testimony to this, be it that our testimonies are voiced or unvoiced. Only in this belated age of modernity do people have a divergent view on modesty. Today, Hijaab may pose difficulties for Muslim women due to the environment surrounding them. If we actively create an environment of Hijaab i.e. if our mothers, sisters, and friends who we daily visit become observers of Hijaab then the situation would become one of the norm, eliminating feelings of awkwardness and difficulty.

In the sixties when our elders first came to Britain it was impossible to keep a beard or wear a Topi, rouges would mock such persons. But today Alhamdulillah we see many Muslim youngsters in the middle of the town dressed in Jubbas and turbans without the slightest hesitation or fear.

The Thawaab and divine pleasure for reviving Hijaab can be deduced from the following Hadith.

The Holy Prophet said, "He who adheres to my Sunnah at a time when my Ummah has become corrupt will obtain the Thawaab of a hundred martyrs."

Quranic Tafseer Upon hijaab

"O ye who believe! Enter not the dwellings of the Prophet for a meal without waiting for the proper time, unless permission be granted you. But if ye are invited, enter and when your meal is ended then disperse. Linger not for conversation. Lo, that would cause annoyance to the Prophet and he would be shy of (asking) you (to go) but Allah is not shy of the truth."

The above is a part revelation of verse: 53 - Surah Ahzaab.

In a narration of Bukhari , Hazrat Anas explains: "I am the most known amongst the people, concerning the causes of the first revelation of Hijaab. Reason being, I was present throughout the whole incident and I witnessed the acts of the Sahaabaa and the Prophet ."

After Hazrat Zainab bint Jahash enjoined in marriage with the blessed Prophet , she was brought into the small house situated in the Haram of the Prophet . The Prophet had a meal prepared in aid of the blessed marriage i.e. Waleemah. After the dinner was served many people stayed behind and lingered for purposes of conversation. In a narration of Tirmizi it is stated that the blessed Prophet and Ummul Mu’mineen Hazrat Zainab also remained there. Hazrat Zainab had turned her face towards the wall in shame. To see such actions caused discomfort to the Prophet , who took leave and visited the other blessed wives. Upon return he found the gathering had not yet dispersed. Again the Prophet left in annoyance. Seeing this act of the Prophet many people understood and took leave. Hazrat Anas reports: “The Prophet came outside the small building and I was present there too. It was then that the above verses were revealed to the Prophet .”

Although the verses do not openly explain the form and procedures of Hijaab, they have given an explanation as to refrain from going to the Prophet’s houses, because discomfort was resultant not only for the Prophet but also for the blessed wives too.

Following onwards the Quran portrays:

‘And when ye ask of them (the wives of the Prophet anything, ask it of them from behind a curtain. That is purer for your hearts and for their hearts.’ (Part revelation of verse: 53 Surah Ahzaab)

Although the cause of revelation refers only to the blessed wives of the Prophet , the rule applies to the whole Ummah. So that the hearts and intents of both the believing men and women can stay clean and purified.

We learn that if such a revelation was related to the blessed wives of the Prophet who in all means stand as our pillars of guidance, then we, the unworthy, too must also consider the matter and follow in accordance, as no man can ever level with the standards of piety and purity of the blessed Sahaabaa/Sahaabiyaat. If there were such restrictions, then we, in all circumstances should restrict ourselves more severely in matters such as these.

Allah Ta’aalaa has stated in the Holy Quran:

"And stay in your houses, adorn not yourself with the adornment of the times of ignorance." (Part revelation: Surah Ahzaab)

The times of ignorance mentioned in the Aayah indicate the days of darkness previous to the light and expandations of Islam. The Holy Qur’an has referred to these days as, ‘The first/early days of ignorance.’ This reveals to us the fact that there will be another period when darkness will over power the true light to cause disruption within the living people again.

Reflecting upon the present situation of the ways of the world, we can witness this fact. We see the evil growth of ignorance is casting it’s magnitudinal force, unfortunately the very ways and teachings of the Holy Prophet are being neglected.

If one looks towards the inner meaning of the Aayah, it becomes apparent that a woman was created with a homely character, her duties lie within her home, therefore the Islamic law requires her to stay at home. However, if the need arises she is permitted to leave her home, enclose herself within the ‘Jilbaab’ and accomplish her needs.

Allah Ta’aalah has further stated in the Holy Quran:

‘O, Prophet! Tell thy wives and thy daughters and the women of the believers to draw their cloaks close round them (when they go out). That will be better so that they may be recognised and not annoyed. Allah is ever Forgiving, Merciful.’ (Verse: 59 Surah Ahzaab)

Hazrat Ibne Jareer has reported the description of ‘Jilbaab’ from Hazrat Abdullah Ibn Abbas : ‘A thick cloth in which a woman conceals herself from head to toe allowing a narrow opening by the eye for means of seeing.’

Along with this limitation, the woman must walk to one side of the path, refrain from mingling in crowds of men, not apply perfume or any other forms of scent, or wear tinkling jewellery that cause attraction, as these give invitation towards corruptive acts.

In the above mentioned Aayah, Allah Ta’aalaa has ordained the blessed wives, daughters and believing women of the Prophet to observe ‘Hijaab’, according to the specification of Abdullah ibn Abbas .

A woman is like a precious rare stone, the most valuable and attractive recognition is her face. It would be considered useless if she concealed her whole body, and revealed her face, for this is where a woman’s beauty lies. What could be more worthy of being kept ‘well hidden’ than her face?

Hazrat Abdullah Ibne Mas’ood has given the following definition for the ‘Jilbaab’: ‘The large cloth which is worn over the large head scarf (Dupattah).’

Imam Mohammad Ibn Seereen inquired to Hazrat Ubaydah Salmaani about the ‘Jilbaab’ and its form of concealment. Hazrat Ubaydah taught through demonstration by drawing a large cloth over his head and then covered the face allowing a small opening by the left eye for purposes of seeing.

Both explanations of Ibne Abbas and Ubaydah Salmaani are focused upon the word ‘Yudneena’ (in the Aayah). The Aayah openly explains the necessity of ‘Hijaab’ for women of all ages and times.

Hazrat Maulana Shabbir Ahmed Uthmani has stated:
"It can be found in many narrations that the believing women would go out in such concealment that only one eye would be revealed for means of seeing. So, accordingly in the age of corruption, to cover the face would fall as a compulsory act upon every Muslim woman."

However, if unintentionally any loss or misconduct occurs within the observation of Hijaab, Allah Ta’aalaa is most forgiving.

Commentary upon ‘Hijaab’ is covered sufficiently under the verses of Surah Ahzaab, which was revealed at the time of the respected marriage of Hazrat Zainab bint Jahash at the blessed hands of the Prophet .

The scholars’ views differ as to when this incident took place. Many scholars view this incident to have taken place in the year 03. A.H. In contrast several others as mentioned in ‘Tafseer Ibn Katheer’ and ‘Naylul-Awtaar’ give a stronger view towards the occurrence of the incident to have taken place in the year 05.A.H. This has also been narrated from Hazrat Anas . However, an agreement was finally made on the narration of Hazrat Anas .

The verses upon ‘Hijaab’ in Surah Noor were revealed in the year 06.A.H. The observance of Hijaab was obediently adhered to in result of the revelations of Surah Ahzaab. The following part revelation of verse: 60, Surah Noor explains:

"In such a way as not to show adornment."

One interpretation of the Aayah explains that having dressed accordingly as the Quran, old womenfolk may go out unveiled yet in such a way that adornment is not revealed.

The Holy Prophet once said to his blessed wives: "I permit you to leave your homes whenever the need arises."

It is said that the blessed wives of the Prophet would pay visits to their parents, friends, relatives etc. They would also take leave for purposes such as performing the blessed pilgrimage as well as the optional Umrah. Many Sahaabiyaat would accompany the blessed Sahaabaa at the time of battle, nursing the wounded etc.

"Tell the believing men to lower their gaze and guard their modesty, that is purer for them. Lo! Allah is aware of what they do. And tell the believing women to lower their gaze and be modest, and to display of their adornment only that which is apparent, and to draw their veils over their bosoms, and not to reveal their adornment save to their own husbands or fathers or husband’s fathers or their sons or their husband’s sons or their brothers, or their brother’s sons or sister’s sons or their women or their slaves, or male attendants who lack vigour, or children who know naught of women’s nakedness. And let them not stamp their feet so as to reveal what they hide of their adornment. And turn unto Allah together, O, believers in order that you may succeed." (Surah Noor, verses: 30-31)

"And tell the believing men to lower their gaze."

Yaguddoo‘ is originated from the word ‘gad‘ which means: "To lower the gaze." Relating to this Aayat Ibne Katheer and Ibne Hibban have commentated as follows: To turn the gaze away from such things upon which the Islamic law has forbidden, e.g. To look at a non Mehram of the opposite sex with bad intent, to even glance at any male/females’ ‘Satar’, to disturb others privacy by looking into their homes, living quarters etc., are extremely forbidden and the outcomes are severe (in this World and in the Hereafter).

"And guard their modesty."

To over-rule ones unlawful desires from bad intents and doings e.g. To indulge within adultery, to be sexually attracted to members of the same sex (Homosexuality, Lesbianism), to fulfil evil desires by means of forbidden touching, glancing etc. Hazrat Abdullah bin Mas’ood has reported from the Holy Prophet : "Sight is a poisonous spear amongst the many spears of the Shaitaan. One who resists it in the fear of Allah, is rewarded with strong faith, whose sweetness is withheld in the heart of the resistor."

Hazrat Jareer ibn Abdullah once questioned the Holy Prophet regarding a man who unintentionally glances at a woman. The Holy Prophet replied: "The man must turn away instantly and his first glance will be forgiven." (Muslim)

"And tell the believing women to lower their gaze and guard their modesty." Part revelation - Surah Noor.

This Aayah is in accordance with the same command as above, except that this Aayah relates to women. The above Aayah ordained that the believing men should lower their gaze. Usually the orders for women follow along accordingly although the Aayah may be directed to men alone. The woman’s order was specified so that subsequently it may strengthen the point and highlight its outcome effectively.

"And to display of their adornment only that which is apparent."

The literal definition of ‘Zeenat’ is the accessories which adorn a woman, e.g. Outstanding garments, jewellery etc. The majority of commentators have given an explanation as follows: Looking at the accessories of Zeenat is permissible but, to look at the bearer of such accessories is forbidden.

"Only that which is apparent."

The Aayah reveals an exception as to what is apparent of a woman’s adornment. These exceptions are when a woman is working or constantly moving and her hands/face may be revealed then this is dealt with as an exception. Hazrat Ibne Ma’sood gives the following commentary regarding this exception:
“The Aayah relates to the cloth or garment worn above the inner clothing eg. Burqa’.“

Hazrat Ibn Abbas commentates as follows:
“The Aayah gives the exception to uncover the face and hands when the need arises.“

Again the scholars’ views differ as to whether it is compulsory for a woman to cover her face or not? Hazrat Ibne Ma’sood states:
“To unveil the face or hands in the presence of a non Mehram is not permissible. Hence this is an unlawful act.”

Hazrat Ibne Abbas states:
“To uncover the face and hands is permissible for a woman when there is no fear of bad intents and doings. And men should consider the fact that the Qur’an has ordained them to lower their gaze and be modest. “

"And to draw their veils over their bosoms."

Khumur’ is originated from the word ‘Khimaar’ which means a large head scarf which covers the head and the chest. Before the revelation of the Aayat-e-Hijaab women used to cover their hair and let the scarf fall down the back, baring the front parts from the scarf. However, we see today that the same fashion of the days of ignorance is being adopted. ‘[I]Juyoob[/I]’ is originated from the word ‘[I]Jayb[/I]’, this word holds the meaning of the breast pocket, but within the Arabs this word connotates the meaning of the upper front half.

"And not to reveal their adornment save to their own husbands or fathers or husband’s fathers or their sons or their husband’s sons or their brothers or their brother’s sons or sister’s sons or their women, or their slaves, or male attendants who lack vigour, or children who know naught of women’s nakedness."

The ‘men’ mentioned above are a women’s Mehram, along with these Mehrams is her own husband. A woman is permitted to reveal herself fully in the presence of her husband. However, this is not permissible in the presence of her Mehrams also. They are not entitled or permitted to even glance at her ‘Satar’. A woman’s Mehram is there to protect her and was created as a protective model for the purpose that he will not cause any harm to her. Grand father and great grand father fall into the category of a father to which Hijaab is not necessary.

"Or their women." This means the Muslim women. These are like her Mehrams, not permitted to see a woman’s ‘Satar’. Otherwise there is no harm to unveil in their presence. The Aayah indicates that Muslim women should refrain from maintaining acquaintance with ‘Kaafir’ women as consequently ill influences are very likely.

"Or their slaves."

Although there is no restriction governing whether the permittance concerns male slaves within the Aayah, many scholars have commented that this relates only to the female slave.

Hazrat Saeed ibn Musayyib spoke these last words before taking leave from this world: ‘Do not let the Aayah of Surah Noor mislead you as this refers to the women slaves not the men.’

"Or male attendants who lack vigour."

Hazrat Abdullah Ibn Abbas has stated:
“This means one who has no interests and desired pleasure in sexual matters. “

"or children who know not of women’s nakedness."

This refers to such children who have not yet approached adolescence, and who are not aware of sensual features of a woman. However, if the case is such that the child approaching adolescence displays an interest in women and their features then to unveil oneself in the child’s presence is prohibited. (Ibne-Katheer)

"And let them not stamp their feet so as to reveal what they hide of their adornment."

If jewellery is worn around the ankles e.g. Anklets, which create noise and tend to attract men towards the tinkling sounds then this again is considered within the violations of Hijaab. To let a non Mehram become aware of this attraction is extremely prohibited. If restrictions are such for the sounds of tinkling or heels, then for a woman to raise her voice reaches well beyond the border. Within the same category falls the use of perfume and scent, these are a source of attraction whether applied intentionally or unintentionally, these should not be applied when going out or in the presence of non Mehrams.

"And turn unto Allah, O, believers in order that you may succeed."

Finally Allah Ta’aalaa mentions in the Aayah which reveals the fact that if any sins or faults are committed then O believers turn to Allah so that you may succeed. Whilst asking for forgiveness from our great, most forgiving Lord one must express shame and regret over ones previous misconducts and resultantly never approach or intend to advance towards any bad.


The 7 Quranic verses which have been portrayed give rise to 3 differing grades of Hijaab. The highest of these 3 grades of Hijaab is that a woman should remain within her home as far as it is possible.

The second grade of Hijaab is that if the need should arise that a woman must go out then this should be carried out in such adornment which conceals her entirely. Whilst observing this grade of Hijaab, the application of scent, the wearing of tinkling jewellery, to exercise caution when walking so as not to enter the heart of a mixed crowd etc, are also points to be borne in mind.

The third and lowest grade of Hijaab is in accordance to the Aayah of Surah Noor, "Except that which is evident." This verse is one of differing interpretations. Some scholars believe that ‘evident’ connotates the actual Burqa and Niqaab whilst other scholars have interpretated that ‘except that which is evident’ refers to the face and hands.

From amongst the 4 Imams, Imam Malik, Shafi and Ahmed (R.A) have unanimously agreed upon the first of the two interpretations. According to the schools of thought related to these three Imams, no room has been given to the unveiling of the face and hands regardless of the fear of unlawful acts or not.

Imam Abu Hanifa has differed in his opinions favouring the latter of the two interpretations, however, he has only accepted the unveiling of the face and hands if there is no fear of unlawful acts arising in the process of this third grade of Hijaab.

However, such unveiling within this day and age would obviously give rise to unlawful ways and so the necessity of entire concealment becomes much reinforced, consequently the great scholars after Imam-e-Aazam also agreed with the thoughts of Imam Malik, Shafi and Ahmed (R.A).

In view of this, the third grade of Hijaab has become invalidated and impermissible. Conclusively, Muslim women should observe either of the two valid and permitted grades of Hijaab. 'Respond to the call of Allah, Verily Allah will help and guide you to righteousness.'

Page created: 16/12/2007
Page last updated: 28/07/2008
Page views: 603

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