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Women’s attendance in the masjid

Never limit yourself as a believing Muslim woman. To those who do not know, Muslim women are seen as oppressed, less than men, and in need of libration. However, to those who have the ability, Muslim women are empowered, have their lifestyles, and have different roles in this world.

In the book the ideal Muslimah, Dr. Muhammad points out one situation where a husband is not allowed to prevent a Muslim woman from attending Jummah or prayer in the Masjid. A masjid is a place of worship, seeking knowledge, and being surrounded by other Muslims. Those who prevent women from attending or do not allow space for women are not following the sunnah.

There is one hadith that Dr. Muhammad reiterates in the ideal Muslimah, which shows the characteristics of women’s right to attend the masjid, and no one, not even her husband, can say no.

One of the wives of `Umar (bin Al-Khattab) used to offer the Fajr and the `Isha’ prayer in the congregation in the Mosque. She was asked why she had come out for the prayer as she knew that `Umar disliked it, and he has great ghaira (self-respect). She replied, “What prevents him from stopping me from this act?” The other replied, “The statement of Allah’s Apostle (p.b.u.): ‘Do not stop Allah’s women-slave from going to Allah s Mosques’ prevents him.”

{Reference: Sahih al-Bukhari 900; Sahih Bukhari English translation: Vol. 2, Book 13, Hadith 23)

This hadith is so beautiful because it shows Muslim women’s rights. Whatever Allah allows for Muslim women, no one can stop her. It offers so much power. This hadith was about the wife of Umar bin al Khattab. He was known to stick to his religion, be jealous, and be robust in faith. For this hadith to be related to him, it shows the power of the Muslim women when their rights are outlined to her.

Another example of the women attending the masjid is the story of the wives of the Prophet (Sallahu Alayhi wa Salam) who would attend fajr and isha prayer in the masjid but would go without being noticed. There was no saying of attending only with supervision or going out with another woman. It only said she would go unnoticed, in the Idea Muslimah Dr. Muhammad said,

“Behave in accordance with Islamic teachings of purity of thought and behavior.”

This quote is related to women attending the masjid to pray, attending masjid to seek knowledge, for lectures, and to be a part of the community. Being modest in action, thoughts, and appearance all go together. Having the intention of attending the masjid for Islamic growth. These are all acts that go into women attending the masjid. Reviving the Sunnah of attending the masjid is important at this time while also keeping in mind the goal of modesty.

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