Fatwa: # 15695
Category: Jurisprudence and Rulings...
Country: South Africa
Date: 27th September 2007

Title

If Muslim woman are not allowed to go to university, how will they be able to study medicine and become doctors.

Question

If Muslim woman are not allowed to go to university, how will they be able to study medicine and become doctors. My muslim wife becomes ill and needs a gynaecologist's opinion or examination. There is no way I'll send her to a male doctor. Furthermore, in this day and age of fitna, muslim brothers (in the blood and muslim sense) are not prepared to look after their widowed sisters who may have children. These poor people are kicked pillar to post and some end up in prostitution. What a crime! I read in one book where a molvi said that such muslim women should sell samoosas from their homes to earn a living! What was he thinking? Who would come to buy such things? Men of course since woman are barred from leaving their homes! If a woman had proper education even if secular, she could fend for herself and children. We place too much goodness in the hands of Muslims nowadays when the reality is that the majority do not care what happens to these poor people and in some instances even exploit them. What is your opinion on this issue...

 

 

 

 

Answer

In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful

Assalaamu `alaykum waRahmatullahi Wabarakatoh

There are two issues in your query. You seem to mix them. One is a Muslim female becoming a doctor. The other is taking care of others. There is no justification of a female becoming a doctor just because people do not take care of others. One does not have to be a doctor to do that. Women are not barred from leaving their homes. If there is a need that is valid and acceptable in Shariah, a woman my leave her home to fulfill her need. Studying medicine in itself is not prohibited. It is in fact a need. This is apart from the fact that Shariah permits a female to be treated by a male doctor. Your sentiment is a different issue. If a female can study medicine without violating the laws of Shariah and with her maintaining her chastity, then it is permissible for her to study medicine. The real issue is whether a female can fulfill these conditions. If she can not, it is an issue between her Islamic values and a worldly qualification for a possible benefit to other women. In such a situation, she will have to give preference to preserving her Islamic values.

And Allah knows best

Wassalam

Mufti Ebrahim Desai
Darul Iftaa

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