Category: Jurisprudence and Rulings (Fiqh)
Fatwa#: 38314
Asked Country: United Kingdom

Answered Date: May 14,2017

Title: A brief response to Dr. Jonathan AC Brown with regards to the issue of women leading men or mixed gender in congregational prayer

Question

Salams,

Could you kindly read the section on women leading congregational prayer in Jonathan AC Brown’s book ‘Misquoting Muhammad’?

He claims that the consensus of impermissibility is invalid.

Answer

Alḥamdulillah, there are many sincere Muslims who love Islām and wish to defend Islām. However, in doing so, it is important to maintain the rules and principles of Islām. If one violates fundamental rules of Ḥadīth and Fiqh in a sincere attempt to defend Islām, he will end up causing more harm.

Dr. Jonathan A.C. Brown has made an attempt to prove the validity of women leading a mixed congregation in Ṣalāh in his book, ‘Misquoting Muhammad’, Chapter Five. However, he has erred in his approach.

Muftī Mu’ādh Chati has analysed Dr. Jonathan A.C. Brown’s article on the issue and pointed out the academic flaws in his approach to this topic that inevitably led to his incorrect conclusion.

This article makes for an interesting read for the ‘Ulamā.

Unfortunately, some individuals are mesmerised by people’s writing styles and presentation without analysing and measuring the contents of the writing through established academic rules and principles.

Mufti Ebrahim Desai


In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.

As-salāmu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullāhi wa-barakātuh.

The Darul Iftaa is currently preparing to close for its Ramaḍān break. Accordingly, we are unable to provide a detailed response. Nonetheless, we shall provide a brief response.

We have read the chapter in reference.

It is clear from his approach that Dr. Jonathan A.C. Brown considers it permissible for women to lead obligatory congregational Ṣalāh for males and females (mixed genders).

He has based his reasoning upon the following:

  1. The narration of Ḥaẓrat Umm Waraqah Raḍiyallāhu ‘Anha
  2. The statements of Muḥy Al Dīn Ibn ‘Arabī
  3. The claim that there is no consensus upon its impermissibility due to the difference of opinion of Imām Abū Thawr Raḥimahullah (d.240 AH), Imām Al Muzanī Raḥimahullah (d.264 AH), and Imām Muḥammad ibn Jarīr Al Ṭabarī Raḥimahullah (d.310 AH)

Analysis:

Before continuing further, it must be clarified that there is a legitimate difference of opinion amongst the scholars of the four schools of thought with regards to women leading other women in congregational Ṣalāh. Our discussion below pertains to the issue of women leading men/men and women (mixed genders) in obligatory congregational Ṣalāh.

Dr. Brown begins the chapter by writing:

In March 2005, web traffic and media in the Muslim world convulsed with new controversy. Its source was unusual. Muslims in America rarely contribute to the regular flow of scandals or outrageous fatwas that provide standard media fodder. In New York, a collection of Muslim activitists along with the organization MuslimWakeUp.com had helped organize what they described as the ‘first punlic Juma prayer of its kind’ in the history of Islam. It would be led by a woman, who would deliver the Friday sermon leading the congregation in prayer.

The Manhattan prayer received premier attention in the US media. Motives were mixed among the organizers. For many, asserting a woman’s right to lead men or a mixed-gender group in communal prayer and deliver a Friday sermon was a necessary step toward reclaiming Muslim women’s parity with men and their legitimate role in Islam’s public religious life. For the American Muslim scholar and activist who was asked to lead the prayer, Dr. Amina Wadud, it was the continuation of her own spiritual struggle to realize Islam’s liberation of all people, an outgrowth of the African-American stuggle for equality. For author and media activist Asra Nomani, who buzzed around the event coordinating publicity for an upcoming book, it was a step in her ongoing public cry for reform in Islam (She had some days earlier taped ’99 [sic] Precepts’ to the door of her local mosque in West Virginia).

[Misquoting Muhammad by Dr. Jonathan AC Brown, page 189 – Oneworld – ISBN 978-1-78074-420-9]

We shall now analyse the evidences presented by Dr. Brown.

1)    The Ḥadīth of Ḥaẓrat Umm Waraqah Raḍiyallāhu ‘Anha

 

Dr. Brown writes:

 

The proponents of women leading prayer, including the MuslimWakeUp.com organizers, cited as proof the Hadith of the female companion Umm Waraqa. In this Hadith, the Prophet instructs Umm Waraqa to lead her household in prayer, even assigning an old man to act as her muezzin and perform the call to prayer. Even the medieval scholars most opposed to woman-led prayer acknowledged that the word ‘household’ (dar) used in the hadith should be assumed to include men and women.

 

Much better attested than the previous Hadith banning woman-led prayer, the hadith of Umm Waraqa has been deemed ‘sound’ (sahih) by respected medieval scholars such as Ibn Khuzayma and Hakim Naysaburi, and the ultra-conservative modern Salafi Hadith critic Albani rated it as ‘good’ (hasan), the status of most Hadiths used in law.

 

[Misquoting Muhammad by Dr. Jonathan AC Brown, page 194 – Oneworld – ISBN 978-1-78074-420-9]

 

The narration quoted by Dr. Brown is as follows: Al Walīd ibn Jumay’ narrates from ‘Abdul Raḥmān ibn Khallād regarding Ḥaẓrat Umm Waraqah Raḍiyallāhu ‘Anha:

 

كَانَ رَسُوْلُ اللهِ صَلَّى الله عليه وسلم يزورُها في بيتها وجعلَ لها مُؤَذناً يُؤذّنُ لها وأمرَها أن تَؤُمَّ أهلَ دارِها

Translation:

“The Prophet Ṣallallāhu ‘Alayhi Wasallam would visit her house, and he designated for her a Mu’adhin who would give Adhan for her and he commanded her to lead the people of her house in alāh

 

This Ḥadīth has been proven to be weak. You may read the following article written by Muftī Zameelur Rahman Ṣāḥib: http://www.askimam.org/public/question_detail/28165   

 

In summary, besides the inconsistency (Itirāb) in the actual words of the narration, the narration also has the following flaws:

 

1-    The inconsistency (Itirāb) in narrations leading from Al Walīd ibn ‘Abdillah Al Jumay’

 

Every chain of narration contains the narrator Al Walīd ibn ‘Abdillah Al Jumay’. 

 

The inconsistency (Itirāb) may be seen from the fact that the narration has been narrated by:

 

  • Ø Al Walīd from his grandmother Laylā Bint Mālik from Ḥaẓrat Umm Waraqah Raḍiyallāhu ‘Anha

 

  • Ø Al Walīd from ‘Abdul Raḥmān ibn Khallād from Ḥaẓrat Umm Waraqah Raḍiyallāhu ‘Anha

 

  • Ø Al Walīd from his grandmother Laylā Bint Mālik from her father Mālik from Ḥaẓrat Umm Waraqah Raḍiyallāhu ‘Anha

 

  • Ø Al Walīd from ‘Abdul Raḥmān ibn Khallād from his father Khallād from Ḥaẓrat Umm Waraqah Raḍiyallāhu ‘Anha

 

  • Ø Al Walīd from his grandmother Laylā Bint Mālik from her mother from Ḥaẓrat Umm Waraqah Raḍiyallāhu ‘Anha

 

[See: Tuḥfatul Ashrāf, volume 13, page 110, (n.a: Al Maktab Al Islāmī, n.a)]

 

[Also see: Itḥāf Al Maharah, volume 18, page 323-324, (Madīnah: Wuzārah Al Shu’ūn, 2002)]

 

[Tahdhīb Al Tahdhīb, volume 2, page 113, (Cairo: Al Fāruq Al Ḥadīthiyyah, 2009)]

 

Indeed, the inconsistency (Itirāb) in the chain of narration leading from Al Walīd ibn ‘Abdillah Al Jumay’ is undeniable.

 

2-    The doubts over the reliability of Al Walīd ibn ‘Abdillah Al Jumay’

 

Every chain of narration contains the narrator Al Walīd ibn ‘Abdillah Al Jumay’. 

 

The statements of ‘Allāmah Al ‘Uqaylī Raḥimahullah (d.322 AH), ‘Allamah Ibn Ḥibbān Raḥimahullah (d.354 AH), and Imām Al Ḥākim Raḥimahullah (d.405 AH) regarding Al Walīd ibn ‘Abdillah Al Jumay’ have been mentioned in the article.

 

‘Allāmah Al ‘Uqaylī Raḥimahullah (d.322 AH) said:

 

فِيْ حَدِيْثِهِ اضْطِرَابٌ 

Translation:

 

“There is inconsistency (Iḍṭirāb) in his narrations”

 

[Tahdhīb Al Tahdhīb, volume 11, page 139, Cairo: Al Fārūq Al Ḥadīthiyyah, 2009)]

 

‘Allamah Ibn Ḥibbān Raḥimahullah (d.354 AH) said:

 

يَنْفَرِدُ عَنِ الْأَثْبَاتِ بِمَا لَا يَشْبَهُ حَدِيْثَ الثِّقَاتِ فَلَمَّا فَحُشَ ذَلِكَ مِنْهُ بَطَلَ الْإِحْتِجَاجُ بِهِ

Translation:

 

“He narrates singular narrations from reliable narrators that are such that they do not resemble the narrations of reliable narrators, thus when this became extravagant from him, it became invalid to use him (i.e. his narrations) as evidence”

 

[Tahdhīb Al Tahdhīb, volume 11, page 139, Cairo: Al Fārūq Al Ḥadīthiyyah, 2009)]

 

Imām Al Ḥākim Raḥimahullah (d.405 AH) said:

 

لَوْ لَمْ يَخْرُجْ لَهُ مُسْلِمٌ لَكَانَ أَوْلَى 

Translation:

 

“If [Imām] Muslim had not presented his narration, it would have been better”

 

[Tahdhīb Al Tahdhīb, volume 11, page 139, Cairo: Al Fārūq Al Ḥadīthiyyah, 2009)]

 

In addition to the above, Ḥāfiẓ Al Mundhirī Raḥimahullah (d.656 AH) writes:

 

وَفِيْ إِسْنَادِهِ الْوَلِيْدُ بْنُ عَبْدِ اللهِ بْنِ جُمَيْعٍ الزُّهْرِيُّ الْكُوْفِيُّ وَفِيْهِ مَقَالٌ وَقَدْ أَخْرَجَ لَهُ مُسْلِمٌ

 

Translation:

 

“It its chain of narration there is Al Walīd ibn ‘Abdillah Jumay’ Al Zuhrī Al Kūfī, and there is [some] talk over him and indeed [Imām] Muslim has narrated from him”

 

[Mukhtaṣar Sunan Abī Dāwūd, page 181, (Riyāḍ: Maktabatul Ma’ārif, 2010)]

 

Imām Al Bazzār Raḥimahullah (d.292 AH) said:

 

وَالْوَلِيْدُ بْنُ جُمَيْعٍ فَمَعْرُوْفٌ إِلَّا أَنَّهُ كَانَتْ فِيْهِ شِيْعِيَّةٌ شَدِيْدَةٌ وَقَدْ احْتَمَلَ أَهْلُ الْعِلْمِ حَدِيْثَهُ وَحَدَّثُوْا عَنْهُ 

 

Translation:

 

“Al Walīd ibn ‘Abdillah Jumay’ is known, except that there was a huge amount of Shī’ism in him, and indeed the scholars have accommodated his narration and they have narrated from him”

 

[Musnad Al Bazzār, volume 7, page 228 (Beirut: Dārul Kutub Al ‘Ilmiyyah, 2009) ed. Maḥfūẓ Al Raḥmān]

 

Ḥāfiẓ Ibn Ḥajar Al ‘Asqalānī Raḥimahullah (d.852 AH) concludes in Taqrīb Al Tahdhīb:

 

صَدُوْقٌ يَهِمُ وَرُمِيَ بِالتَّشَيُّعِ  

Translation:

 

“He was [a] truthful [narrator] who made mistakes, and he was accused of being a Shī’ah

[Taqrīb Al Tahdhīb, page 612, Jeddah: Dārul Minhāj, 2009), ed. Muḥammad ‘Awwāmah]

3-    Along with the inconsistency of narrations leading from Al Walīd ibn ‘Abdillah Al Jumay’, none the narrations leading from Al Walīd ibn ‘Abdillah Al Jumay’ are free from one of the following two narrators[1]:

 

  • Ø Laylā bint Mālik, the grandmother of Al Walīd ibn ‘Abdillah Al Jumay’
  • Ø ‘Abdul Raḥmān ibn Khallād

Laylā Bint Malik 

Ḥāfiẓ Ibn Hajar Raḥimahullah (d.852 AH) concludes in Taqrīb Al Tahdhīb:

لَيْلَى بِنْتُ مَالِكٍ لَا تُعْرُفَ 

Translation:

“Laylā Bint Mālik is not known”

[Taqrīb Al Tahdhīb, page 785, Jeddah: Dārul Minhāj, 2009), ed. Shaykh Muḥammad ‘Awwāmah]

The strict assessor of Ḥadīth, Abul Ḥasan ibn Al Qatṭān Raḥimahullah (d.628 AH) writes:

وَجَدَّةُ الْوَلِيْدِ كَذَلِكَ لَا تُعْرَفُ أَصْلًا 

Translation:

“The grandmother of Al Walīd is also like this, she is completely unknown

[Bayān Al Wahm Wal Īhām, volume 5, page 23, (Riyāḍ: Dār Ṭībah, 2011) ed. Al Ḥusayn Āyat Sa’īd]

From amongst the contemporary scholars of Ḥadīth, Shaykh Shu’ayb Al Arnaout and Shaykh Muḥammad ‘Awwāmah have stated that Laylā bint Mālik is an unknown (Majhūl) narrator.

[Musnad Aḥmad ibn Ḥanbal, volume 45, page 254 (Beirut: Mu’assassah Al Risālah, 2008) ed. Shu’ayb Al Arnaout, et al.]

[Muṣannaf Ibn Abī Shaybah, volume 18, page 220 (Jeddah: Dārul Qiblah, 2006) ed. Shaykh Muḥammad ‘Awwāmah]

‘Abdul Ramān ibn Khallād

Ḥāfiẓ Ibn Hajar Raḥimahullah (d.852 AH) writes in Al Talkhīṣ Al Ḥabīr:

وَفِيْ إِسْنَادِهِ عَبْدُ الرَّحْمَنِ بِنُ خَلَّادٍ وَفِيْهِ جَهَالَةٌ 

Translation:

 

“In its chain of narration there is ‘Abdul Raḥmān ibn Khallād and there is ambiguity regarding him”

 

[Al Talkhīṣ Al Ḥabīr, volume 2, page 57, (n.a: Mu’assassah Qurṭubah, 1995), ed. Abū ‘Asim]

Ḥāfiẓ Ibn Ḥajar Raḥimahullah (d.852 AH) concludes in Taqrīb Al Tahdhīb:

مَجْهُوْلُ الْحَالِ

Translation:

“His state [as a narrator] is unknown”

[Taqrīb Al Tahdhīb, page 372, Jeddah: Dārul Minhāj, 2009), ed. Shaykh Muḥammad ‘Awwāmah]

From amongst the contemporary scholars of Ḥadīth, Shaykh Shu’ayb Al Arnaout and Dr. Māhir Yasīn Al Faḥl have concluded that ‘Abdul Raḥmān ibn Khallād is unknown (Majhūl). 

 

Conclusion

 

Ḥāfiẓ Abul Walīd Al Bājī Raḥimahullah (d.474 AH) writes:

 

هَذَا الْحَدِيْثُ مِمَّا لَا يَجِبُ أَنْ يُعَوَّلَ عَلَيْهِ 

Translation:

 

“This narration is from amongst those that are not necessary to be relied upon”

 

[Al Muntaqā Sharḥul Muwattā, volume 2, page 203, (Beirut: Dārul Kutub Al ‘Ilmiyyah, 1999) ed. Muḥammad ‘Abdul Qādir]

 

‘Allāmah Ibn Al Mulaqqin Raḥimahullah (d.804 AH) writes:

هَذَا الْحَدِيْثُ سَكَتَ عَنْهُ الْبَيْهَقِيُّ فِي "السُّنَنِ" وَعَبْدُ الْحَقِّ فِي "الْأَحْكَام" وَقَدْ عَلِمْتَ مَا فِيْهِ مِنَ الإِضْطِرَابِ وَالْجَهَالَةِ 

 

Translation:

 

“This narration; Al Bayhaqī in Al Sunan and ‘Abdul Ḥaq in Al Aḥkām have remained silent over it, and indeed you are aware of all that it contains from inconsistency (Iḍṭirāb) and anonymity (Jahālah)

 

[Al Badrul Munīr, volume 4, page 392, (Riyāḍ: Dārul Hijrah, 2004), ed. ‘Abdullah ibn Sulaymān, et. al]

 

Qiwām Al Dīn Al Kākī Raḥimahullah (d.749 AH) writes:

 

فِيْ حَدِيْثِ أُمِّ وَرَقَةَ مَقَالًا عِنْدَ أَهْلِ الْحَدِيْثِ 

Translation:

 

“The scholars of Ḥadīth have made some comments over the narration of Umm Waraqah”

 

[Mi’rāj Al Dirāyah, ب/ق١۲٠/١, Fayḍullah Effendī]

 

In his bibliogprahy, Dr. Brown has quoted the authentication of ‘Allāmah Badr Al Dīn Al ‘Aynī Raḥimahullah (d.885 AH) for this narration.

 

‘Allāmah Badr Al Dīn Al ‘Aynī Raḥimahullah (d.885 AH) understood Qiwām Al Dīn Al Kākī Raḥimahullah (d.749 AH)’s statement above as a reference to the anonymity of ‘Abdul Raḥmān ibn Khallād. Al ‘Aynī Raḥimahullah (d.885 AH) has then attempted to refute Qiwām Al Dīn Al Kākī Raḥimahullah (d.749 AH).

 

However, Qiwām Al Dīn Al Kākī Raḥimahullah (d.749 AH) was not only referring to the anonymity of ‘Abdul Raḥmān ibn Khallād. Indeed, there are other issues with the narration other than the anonymity of ‘Abdul Raḥmān ibn Khallād.

 

Accordingly, ‘Allāmah Badr Al Dīn Al ‘Aynī Raḥimahullah (d.885 AH)’s authentication of this narration would not be accepted as he has only attempted to address the issue of the anonymity of ‘Abdul Raḥmān ibn Khallād, he has not addressed the other issues with the narration.

 

Interestingly, ‘Allāmah Badr Al Dīn Al ‘Aynī Raḥimahullah (d.885 AH) has also interpreted the narration of Ḥaẓrat Umm Waraqah Raḍiyallāhu ‘Anha as women leading other women in congregational prayer.

 

[See: Sharh Sunan Abī Dāwūd, volume 3, page 96 (Riyad: Maktabah Al Rushd, 1999) ed. Khalid ibn Ibrahim]

 

Perhaps not entirely related to our discussion, but Dr. Brown has mentioned in his bibliography that ‘Allāmah Badr Al Dīn Al ‘Aynī Raḥimahullah (d.885 AH) has authenticated the narration in his Sharḥ Sunan Abī Dāwud. This is incorrect. ‘Allāmah Badr Al Dīn Al ‘Aynī Raḥimahullah (d.885 AH) has authenticated the narration in his book Al Bināyah Sharḥul Hidayah, not Sharḥ Sunan Abī Dāwud.

 

[Al Bināyah Sharḥul Hidayah, volume 2, page 395 (Multan: Al Maktabah Al Haqqaniyyah, n.a)]

 

It is for the reasons mentioned above that Shaykh Shu’ayb Al Arnaout and his team of researchers that worked on Musnad Aḥmad ibn Ḥanbal concluded that the narration is weak.

 

[See: Musnad Aḥmad ibn Ḥanbal, volume 45, page 254 (Beirut: Mu’assassah Al Risālah, 2008) ed. Shu’ayb Al Arnaout, et al.]

 

[Also see: Sunan Abī Dāwud, volume 1, pages 442-443 (Damascus: Al Risālah Al ‘Alimiyyah, 2009) ed. Shu’ayb Al Arnaout]

 

Dr. Al Ḥusayn Āyat Sa’īd has also concluded that the narration is weak in his research on Bayān Al Wahm Wal Īhām.

 

[Bayān Al Wahm Wal Īhām, volume 2, page 220, (Riyad: Dār Ṭībah, 2011) ed. Al Ḥusayn Āyat Sa’īd]

 

Dr. Māhir Yasīn Al Faḥl has also concluded that the narration is weak in his research upon aī Ibn Khuzaimah.

 

[See: Mukhtaṣar Al Mukhtaṣar Min Musnad Al Ṣaḥīḥ An Al Nabī Ṣallallāhu ‘Alayhi Wasallam, volume 3, page 169 (Riyāḍ: Al Maymān, 2009) ed. Dr. Māhir Yasīn Al Faḥl]

 

Dr. Brown rightly states that the narration has been authenticated by Ibn Khuzaimah Raḥimahullah, indicating towards the fact that Ibn Khuzaimah Raḥimahullah has presented the narration in his Ṣaḥīḥ Ibn Khuzaimah. However, there are weak narrations in aī Ibn Khuzaimah as well as pointed out in our previous Fatwā, see: http://www.askimam.org/public/question_detail/35532

 

Also, it is interesting to note that Ibn Khuzaimah Raḥimahullah presents this narration under the chapter:

بَابُ إِمَامَةِ الْمَرْأَةِ النِّسَاءَ فِي الْفَرِيْضَةِ

Translation:

 

“The chapter of a woman being an Imām for women in obligatory Ṣalāh”

 

This clearly shows that although Dr. Brown presents Ibn Khuzaimah Raḥimahullah’s authentication, he has interpreted the narration differently to how Ibn Khuzaimah Raḥimahullah has interpreted it.

 

[See: Mukhtaṣar Al Mukhtaṣar Min Musnad Al Ṣaḥīḥ An Al Nabī Ṣallallāhu ‘Alayhi Wasallam, volume 3, page 169 (Riyāḍ: Al Maymān, 2009) ed. Dr. Māhir Yasīn Al Faḥl]

 

Indeed, the strict assessors of Ḥadīth have not spared this narration either. ‘Allāmah Ibn Al Jawzī Rahimahullah (d.597 AH) writes after recording the narration of Ḥaẓrat Umm Waraqah Raḍiyallāhu ‘Anha:

 

وَهَذَا لمْ يَصْحَّ 

Translation:

 

“This [narration] is not authentic”

 

[Al Taḥqīq Fī Aḥādīth Al Ta’līq, volume 1, page 255 (Beirut: Dārul Fikr, 2001)]

 

Abul Ḥasan ibn Al Qatṭān Raḥimahullah (d.628 AH) writes:

 

وَذَكَرَ إِمَامَةَ أُمِّ وَرَقَةَ بِقَوْمِهَا وَسَكَتَ عَنْهُ وَهُوَ لَا يَصِحُّ 

 

Translation:

 

“He has mentioned [the narration of] Umm Waraqah leading Ṣalāh and has remained silent over it, and it is in not authentic.

 

[Bayān Al Wahm Wal Īhām, volume 5, page 685, (Riyad: Dār Ṭībah, 2011) ed. Al Ḥusayn Āyat Sa’īd]

 

Beyond the analytical aspect of the Ḥadīth, the Ḥadīth of Ḥaẓrat Umm Waraqah Raḍiyallāhu ‘Anha does not explicitly mention that she led the obligatory congregational prayer of males and females (mixed gender).

 

It is interesting to note that Dr. Brown does not discuss any of the above except very briefly in his bibliography.

 

2)    The statements of Muḥy Al Dīn Ibn ‘Arabī

 

Dr. Brown writes:

 

But even Gomaa’s fatwa tacitly acknowledged the dearth of any real scriptural evidence against women-led prayer. This lay behind the decision by the epochal Sufi sage Ibn Arabi to actually affirm women’s categorical right to lead prayers. Ibn Arabi was no lacklustre jurist and Hadith scholar, and he noted that none of the ulama who prohibited women-led prayer had any scriptural proof (nass) to support their views. Thus, ‘they should not be listended to’. Indeed, the Qur’an is silent on the question of woman-led prayer, and the only Hadith cited directly in classical modern discussion, which quotes the Prophet as ordering, ‘A woman will not lead a man in prayer, nor a Bedouin a townsman, nor an iniquitous man a believer,’ has never been updehld as reliable at all. Rather, it has always been rated as ‘weak’ or even ‘feeble.’

 

Much of the verbiage on the prohibition of woman-led prayer in classical works of Shariah law consists of derivative arguments. Each leaves ample opening for objection. In a sophisticated inversion of the a fortiori argument, Bayhaqi puts forth as his strongest evidence the tangentially related Hadith that ‘A community that entrusts its affairs to a woman will not flourish.’ One could object that not allowing a woman to serve as the ruler of a state in no way necessitates disqualifiying her from the significantly lesser charge of leading the men in her family in a daily prayer at home. Another standard argument, that women lack the spiritual and intellectual faculties to lead prayer, is dispended with summarily by Ibn Arabi. At various points in history, he explains, women have been affirmed by revelation as leaders and bearers of prophecy. Women are, as such, no different as a class than men regarding the capacity to lead religious rituals.

 

[Misquoting Muhammad by Dr. Jonathan AC Brown, page 190 – Oneworld – ISBN 978-1-78074-420-9]

 

Muḥy Al Dīn Ibn ‘Arabī did consider it permissible for women to lead the congregational prayer of mixed genders.

 

It is interesting to note, however, that when presenting his evidence, Muḥy Al Dīn Ibn ‘Arabī does not quote the Ḥadīth of Ḥaẓrat Umm Waraqah Raḍiyallāhu ‘Anha. Rather, Ibn ‘Arabī simply presents his evidence with the following:

 

شَهِدَ رَسُوْلُ اللهِ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ لِبَعْضِ النِّسَاءِ بِالْكَمَالِ كَمَا شَهِدَ لِبَعْضِ الرِّجَالِ وَإِنْ كَانُوْا أَكْثَرَ مِنَ النِّسَاءِ فِي الْكَمَالِ وَهُوَ النُّبُوَّةُ وَالنُّبُوَّةُ إِمَامَةٌ فَصَحَّتْ إِمَامَةُ الْمَرْأَةِ وَالْأَصْلُ إِجَازَةُ إِمَامَتِهَا فَمَنِ ادَّعَى مَنْعَ ذَلِكَ مِنْ غَيْرِ دَلِيْلٍ فَلَا يُسْمَعُ لَهُ 

Translation:

 

“The Prophet Ṣallallāhu ‘Alayhi Wasallam gave testimony for some women that they are complete, just as he gave [this] testimony for some men, although they (the men) were more than women in completeness, and completeness is Prophethood and Prophethood is the position of a leader, thus it is permissible for a woman to be an Imām. The principle position is of the permissibility for her to lead alāh, so he who claims that it is impermissible without evidence shall not be listened to

 

[Futūḥāt Al Makkiyyah, volume 1, page 447, Būlāq Edition]

 

Firstly, the analogical deduction (Qiyās) utilised in the quote has been based upon the assumption that women were also granted Prophethood, despite the fact that the vast majority of scholars have agreed that no woman was sent as a Prophet.

 

Allah the Almighty says:

 

وَمَا أَرْسَلْنَا مِنْ قَبْلِكَ إِلَّا رِجَالًا نُوْحِيْ إِلَيْهِمْ

Translation:

 

“And we have not sent before you except men to whom we sent revelation”

 

[Surah Al Naḥl, verse 43]

 

Ḥāfiẓ Ibn Kathīr Raḥimahullah writes:

 

يُخْبِرُ تَعَالَى أَنَّهُ إِنَّمَا أَرْسَلَ رُسُلَهُ مِنَ الرِّجَالِ لَا مِنَ النِّسَاءِ وَهَذَا قَوْلُ جُمْهُوْرِ الْعُلَمَاءِ 

Translation:

 

“The Almighty informs that he has sent Messengers from men, not women, and this is the view of the majority of scholars

 

[Tafsīr Ibn Kathīr, volume 4, page 544, (Beirut: Dār Ibn Al Jawzi, 1431 AH) ed. Ḥikmat ibn Bashīr]

 

[Also see: Al Tafsīr Al Kabīr by Fakhr Al Dīn Al Rāzī, volume 8, page 47, (Beirut: Dār Iḥyā, n.a)][2]

 

Furthermore, Ibn ‘Arabī has used analogical deduction (Qiyās) to prove the permissibility of women leading obligatory congregational prayer for mixed genders. This is despite the fact that that there can be no analogical deduction (Qiyās) in acts of worship as the intellect cannot decide how an act of worship is to be performed without a command from Sharī’ah (Tawqīf).

 

Ḥaẓrat ‘Alī Raḍiyallāhu ‘Anhu said:

 

لَوْ كَانَ الدِّيْنُ بِالرَّأْيِ لَكَانَ أَسْفَلَ الْخُفَّ أَوْلَى بِالْمَسْحِ مِنْ أَعْلَاهُ وَقَدْ رَأَيْتُ رَسُوْلَ اللهِ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ يَمْسَحُ عَلَى ظَاهِرِ خُفَّيْهِ 

 

Translation:

 

“If religion (i.e the commands of Sharī’ah) was based on intellect, the bottom part of the Khuf (“leather socks”) would be more worthy of being wiped than the top part of it, [whereas] indeed I have seen the Prophet Ṣallallāhu ‘Alayhi Wasallam wipe the top part of his Khuf (“leather socks”)”

 

[Sunan Abī Dāwud, volume 1, page 525 (Jeddah: Dārul Minhāj, 2010) ed. Shaykh Muḥammad ‘Awwāmah)

 

Mullā ‘Alī Al Qārī Raḥimahullah writes:

 

وَقَدْ قَالَ أَبُوْ حَنِيْفَةَ رَحِمَهُ اللهُ لَوْ قُلْتُ بِالرَّأْيِ لَأَوْجَبْتُ الْغُسْلَ بِالْبَوْلِ لِأَنَّهُ نَجِسٌ مُتَّفَقٌ عَلَيْهِ وَالِوُضُوْءُ بِالْمَنِيِّ لِأَنَّهُ نَجِسٌ مُخْتَلَفٌ فِيْهِ

 

Translation:

 

“Indeed, [Imām] Abū Ḥanīfah, may Allah have mercy upon him, said, ‘If I were to rule according to my opinion, I would have made ghusl necessary after urination as it (urine) is impure by consensus and [I would have made] wudhu [necessary] from semen as its impurity is disputed’”

 

[Mirqātul Mafātīḥ, volume 2, page 480, (Beirut: Dārul Fikr, 2010)]

 

Moreover, the dissent of one scholar against a consensus cannot be used as evidence. This is especially when Muḥy Al Dīn Ibn ‘Arabī held the rejected view that any type of consensus other than the consensus of the Ṣaḥābah is invalid, as mentioned by some legal theorists.

 

Mullā Jīwan Raḥimahullah writes:

 

قَالَ بَعْضُهُمْ لَا إِجْمَاعَ إِلَّا لِلصَّحَابَة 

Translation:

 

Some of them said, ‘There is no consensus except for the Sahabah’

 

[Nūrul Anwār, volume 1, page 624, (Karāchī: Maktabatul Bushrā, 2011)]

 

Under this statement, Maulānā Muḥammad ‘Abdul Ḥalīm Al Lucknawī Raḥimahullah writes:

 

(قَالَ بَعْضُهُمْ) كَالشَّيْخِ مُحْيِ الدِّيْنِ ابْنِ الْعَرَبِي وَأَحْمَدَ بْنِ حَنْبَلَ فِيْ إِحْدَى الرِّوَايَتَيْنِ عَنْهُ 

Translation:

 

“(Some of them said) such as Muy Al Dīn Ibn Al ‘Arabī and Aḥmad ibn Ḥanbal in one of the two narrations from him”

 

[Qamrul Aqmār, volume 2, page 103, (Beirut: Dārul Kutub Al ‘Ilmiyyah, 1995)]

 

  1. Dr. Brown claims that Imām Abū Thawr Raḥimahullah (d.240 AH), Imām Al Muzanī Raḥimahullah (d.264 AH), and Imām Al Ṭabarī Raḥimahullah (d.310 AH) also held the view that it is permissible for a woman to lead the congregational obligatory Ṣalāh of men.

 

He writes:

 

The appeals to consensus in the responses of Gomaa, Qaradawi and many other ulama who spoke out against the Manhattan prayer also ring hollow. They noted, as had the prayer organisers, that the great tenth-centure Tabari (d. 923) had allowed women to lead prayer categorically, as had two of Shafi’i’s leading students, Muzani (d. 878) and Abu Thawr (d. 854). We have already mentioned Ibn Arabi’s position. A cadre of Hanbali scholars had allowed women to lead men and women in the optional nightly prayers in Ramadan (Tarawih) if the women in question were learned in the Qur’an and all the available males ignorant (and also provided the women stood out of the men’s sight, behind them).

 

This was no mean gaggle of supporters. Tabari was so respected a jurist in Baghdad and beyond that a madhab formed around his teachings. Although it eventually became extinct. Tabari’s madhab flourished among Sunni ulama for two centuries after his death. Just decades after the scholar died, a leading intellectual historian of the age counted his school among the eigh amdhabs recognised at the time. Abu Thawr also constituted his own madhab, which attracted numerous adherents in Azwrbaijan and Armenia. Muzani was one of the main disciples of Shafi’i, and his abridgement of the Shafi’i’s teachings became the basis for all later books of substantive law in the Shafi’i school.

 

The claim of consensus made by Gomaa and others is unconvincing in light of this dissent. For consensus to be binding, the vast majority of classical Sunni legal theorists allowed no difference of opinion among the qualified scholars of an era, a position to which Gomaa himself subscribes. Making a claim of consensus when three of the most famous legal scholars of a generation fidagreed is thus problematic. Gomaa and others may be referring to the common Sharih principle that an early diversity of opinion is erased and replaced when later scholars come to consensus, but even this is hardly agreed upon. Even those who insist on such late-round consensus must recognise, as the fourteenth century luminary of Cairo, Zarkashi, reminds us, that it is not the rock-solid consensus that quashes all objection. It is only a ‘probable consensus’. More importantly, a lengthy roster of the greatest medieval legal theorists denied that consensus wipes out the dissent of the earlier scholars, for their arguments remain nvalid, as if the dissenting scholar himself still sat in debate. As Shafi’i himself once said, ‘madhabs do not die with the death of their practitioners.

 

[Misquoting Muhammad by Dr. Jonathan AC Brown, page 193 – Oneworld – ISBN 978-1-78074-420-9]

 

However, Imām Al Muzanī Raḥimahullah (d.264 AH) writes:

 

كُلُّ مُصَلٍّ خَلْفَ جُنُبٍ وَامْرَأَةٍ وَمَجْنُوْنٍ وَكَافِرٍ يُجْزِئُهُ صَلَاتُهُ إِذَا لَمْ يَعْلَمْ بِحَالِهِمْ  

Translation:

 

“Every person who performs Ṣalāh behind a person who is in the state of major impurity, or a woman, or an insane person or a non-Muslim, his Ṣalāh shall be valid when he does not know of their state (i.e. he does not know that the Imām is in the state of major impurity or is a woman or an insane person or a non-Muslim)”

[Mukhtaṣar Al Muzanī, page 37, (Beirut: Dārul Kutub Al ‘Ilmiyyah, 1997)]

 

As for the views of Imām Abū Thawr Raḥimahullah (d.240 AH) and Imām Al Ṭabarī Raḥimahullah (d.310 AH), it cannot be said with certainty that their view was of the permissibility of women leading congregational obligatory Ṣalāh for mixed genders. In fact, some scholars have narrated their view differently.

 

Fakhrul Islām Al Qaffāl Al Shafi’ī’ Raḥimahullah (d.507 AH) writes:

وَلَا تَصِحُّ إِمَامَةُ الْمَرْأَةِ لِلرِّجَالِ وَحُكِيَ عَنْ أَبِيْ ثَوْرٍ وَابْنِ جَرِيْرٍ الطَّبَرِيِّ أَنَّهُ يَجُوْزُ إِمَامَتُهَا فِيْ صَلَاة التَّرَاوِيح إِذَا لَمْ يَكُنْ هُنَاكَ قَارِىٌء غَيْرَهَا وَتَقِفُ خَلْفَ الرِّجَالِ

Translation:

 

“It is not permissible for a woman to be an Imām for men, and it has been related from Abū Thawr and Ibn Jarīr Al abarī that it is permissible for them to be an Imām in the alāh Al arāwī when there are no other reciters present, and she shall stand behind the men

 

[Ḥilyatul ‘Ulamā, volume 2, page 170 (Beirut: Mu’assasah Al Risālah, 1980) ed. Yāsīn Aḥmad]

 

Abū ‘Abdillah Al Tamīmī Al Māzirī Raḥimahullah (d.536 AH) writes:

 

وَحَكَى بَعْضُ أَصْحَابِنَا عَنِ الطَّبَرَيِّ وَدَاوُدَ وَأَبِيْ ثَوْرٍ جَوَازَ إِمَامَتِهَا رِجَالًا وَنِسَاءً وَرَأَيْتُ فِيْ نَقْلِ غَيْرِهِمْ عَنْ أَبِيْ ثَوْرٍ وَالْمُزَنِيْ وَالطَّبَرِيِّ أَنَّهُمْ أَجَازُوْا أَنْ تَؤُمَّ الرِّجَالَ فِي التَّرَاوِيْحِ إِذَا لَمْ يَكُنْ غَيْرُهَا وَتَقِفُ خَلْفَ الرِّجَالِ 

 

Translation:

 

“And some of our scholars have related from Al Ṭabarī and Dāwūd and Abū Thawr the permissibility for her to lead the Ṣalāh for men and women. And I have seen in the quotes of others from Abū Thawr and Al Muzanī and Al abarī that they permitted for her to lead men in arāwi alāh when there is no one besides her, and she shall stand behind the men

 

[Sharḥ Al Talqīn, volume 1, page 670, ed. Muḥammad Mukhtār (n.a.: Dārul Gharb Al Islāmī, 1997)]

 

Qiwām Al Dīn Al Kākī Raḥimahullah (d.749 AH) writes:

 

حُكِيَ عَنِ ابْنِ جَرِيْرٍ الطَّبَرِيِّ أَنَّهُ يَجُوْزُ إِمَامَتُهَا بِالتَّرَاوِيْحِ إِذَا لَمْ يَكُنْ هُنَاكَ قَارِئٌ غَيْرُهَا 

 

Translation:

 

“It has been related from Ibn Jarīr Al abarī that it is permissible for her to be an Imām in arāwi alāh when there are no other rectiters other than her

 

[Mi’rāj Al Dirāyah, ا/ق١۲۲/١, Fayḍullah Effendī]

 

‘Allāmah Badr Al Dīn Al ‘Aynī Raḥimahullah (d.855 AH) writes:

 

حُكِيَ عَنِ ابْنِ جَرِيْرٍ الطَّبَرِيِّ أَنَّهُ يَجُوْزُ إِمَامَتُهَا بِالتَّرَاوِيْحِ إِذَا لَمْ يَكُنْ هُنَاكَ قَارِئٌ غَيْرُهَا 

 

Translation:

 

“It has been related from Ibn Jarīr Al abarī that it is permissible for her to be an Imām in arāwi alāh when there are no other rectiters other than her

[Al Bināyah Sharḥul Hidayah, volume 2, page 392 (Multan: Al Maktabah Al Ḥaqqāniyyah, n.a)]

 

Imām Muḥammad Al Shawkānī Raḥimahullah (d.1250 AH) writes:

 

وَأَجَازَ الْمُزَنِيُّ وَأَبُوْ ثَوْرٍ وَالطَّبَرِيُّ إِمَامَتَهَا فِي التَّرَاوِيْحِ إِذَا لَمْ يَحْضُرْ مَنْ يَحْفَظُ الْقُرْآنِ

Translation:

 

“And Al Muzanī and Abū Thawr and Al Ṭabarī permitted for her to lead the alāh of Tarāwī when those who have memorised the Qur’ān are not present

 

[Nayl Al Awṭār, volume 4, page 153, (Riyāḍ: Dār Ibn Al Qayyim, 2005), ed. Abū Mu’ādh]

 

These quotes prove that there is ambiguity over the actual view of Imām Abū Thawr Raḥimahullah (d.240 AH), and Imām Al Ṭabarī Raḥimahullah (d.310 AH). We have shown that there is no ambiguity over the actual view of Imām Al Muzanī Raḥimahullah (d.264 AH); that he only validated the Ṣalāh when the congregation were not aware that a woman is leading the Ṣalāh.

 

Ibn Al Mundhir Raḥimahullah (d.318 AH) has mentioned with regards to the view of Imām Abū Thawr Raḥimahullah (d.240 AH):

 

وَكَانَ أَبُوْ ثَوْرٍ يَقُوْلُ صَلَاتُهُمْ مُجْزِيَةٌ وَهُوَ قِيَاسُ قَوْلِ الْمُزَنِيِّ

 

Translation:


“Abū Thawr would say, ‘Their Ṣalāh is valid’, and this is the analogical deduction (Qiyās) of the statement of Al Muzanī

 

[Al Awsaṭ Fī Al Sunan Wal Ijmā’ Wal Qiyās, volume 4, page 162, (Riyad: Dār Ṭībah, 1991), ed. Aḥmad ibn Muḥammad Ḥanīf]

 

Similarly, Ibn Qudāmah Al Maqdisī Raḥimahullah (d.620 AH) writes:

 

وَقَالَ أَبُوْ ثَوْرٍ لَا إِعَادَةَ عَلَى مَنْ صَلَّى خَلْفَهَا وَهُوَ قِيَاسُ قَوْلِ الْمُزَنِيْ 

 

Translation:

 

“Abū Thawr said, ‘Those who perform Ṣalāh behind her do not need to repeat [their Ṣalāh]’ and this is the analogical deduction (Qiyās) of the statement of Al Muzanī

 

[Al Mughnī, volume 2, page 414, ed. Muḥammad Sharaf Al Dīn and Muḥammad Sayyid (Cairo: Dārul Ḥadīth, 2004)]

 

The analogical deduction (Qiyās) of Imām Al Muzanī Raḥimahullah (d.264 AH) as mentioned by Imām Al Muzanī Raḥimahullah (d.264 AH) is:

 

الْقِيَاسُ أَنَّ كُلَّ مُصَلٍّ خَلْفَ جُنُبٍ وَامْرَأَةٍ وَمَجْنُوْنٍ وَكَافِرٍ يَجْزِيْهِ صَلَاتُهُمْ إِذَا لَمْ يَعْلَمْ بِحَالِهِمْ لِأَنَّ كُلَّ مُصَلٍّ لِنَفْسِهِ لَا تُفْسُدُ عَلَيْهِ صَلَاتُهُ بِفَسَادِهَا عَلَى غَيْرِهِ 

Translation:

 

The analogical deduction (Qiyās) is that every person who performs Ṣalāh behind a person who is in the state of major impurity, or a woman, or an insane person or a non-Muslim, his Ṣalāh shall be valid when he does not know of their state (i.e. he does not know that the Imām is in the state of major impurity or is a woman or an insane person or a non-Muslim). This is because whoever is performing his own Ṣalāh, his Ṣalāh shall not become invalid when the Ṣalāh of another [individual] becomes invalid”

[Mukhtaṣar Al Muzanī, page 37, (Beirut: Dārul Kutub Al ‘Ilmiyyah, 1997)]

 

Thus, it seems more appropriate to say that Imām Abū Thawr Raḥimahullah (d.240 AH)’s view was similar to the view of Imām Al Muzanī Raḥimahullah (d.264 AH) that (according to them) the Ṣalāh of the men who are praying behind women is valid if the men were not aware that a woman is leading alāh.

 

This is further supported by another similar difference of opinion. In the issue of a non-Muslim leading the congregational prayer, the majority of scholars have stated that the Ṣalāh is invalid whether the congregation knows that the Imām is a non-Muslim or not.

 

However, once again, the same scholars, Imām Abū Thawr Raḥimahullah (d.240 AH), and Imām Al Muzanī Raḥimahullah (d.264 AH) have stated that if the congregation were not aware that the Imām was a non-Muslim, then their Ṣalāh is valid.

 

Ibn Al Mundhir Raḥimahullah (d.318 AH) writes:

 

وقَاَلَتْ طَائِفَةٌ لَا إِعَادَةَ عَلَى مَنْ صَلَّى خَلْفَهُ هَذَا قَوْلُ أَبِيْ ثَوْرٍ وَالْمُزَنِيِّ 

Translation:

 

“A group have said, ‘There is no repetition [of Ṣalāh] upon he who prays Ṣalāh behind him (i.e. behind the non-Muslim)’, and this is the view of Abū Thawr and Al Muzanī

 

[Al Awsaṭ Fī Al Sunan Wal Ijmā’ Wal Qiyās, volume 4, page 162, (Riyad: Dār Ṭībah, 1991), ed. Aḥmad ibn Muḥammad Ḥanīf]

 

Ibn Qudāmah Al Maqdisī Raḥimahullah (d.620 AH) writes:

 

وَقَالَ أَبُوْ ثَوْرٍ وَالْمُزَنِيِّ لَا إِعَادَةَ عَلَى مَنْ صَلَّى خَلْفَهُ وَهُوَ لَا يَعْلَمُ لِأَنَّهُ ائْتَمَّ بِمَنْ لَا يَعْلَمُ حَالَهُ فَأَشْبَهَ مَا لَوْ ائْتَمَّ بِمُحْدَثٍ

Translation:

 

Abū Thawr and Al Muzanī have said, ‘There is no repetition [of Ṣalāh] upon the one who prays behind him (i.e. behind the non-Muslim), when he is not aware [that the person is a non-Muslim]. This is because he has performed Ṣalāh behind someone whose state he was unaware of, thus he is similar to the one who performs Ṣalāh behind a person who does not have wuḍū”

[Al Mughnī, volume 2, page 413, (Cairo: Dārul Ḥadīth, 1995), ed. Muḥammad Sharaf Al Dīn and Muḥammad Al Sayyid]

 

Even in his commentary upon Mukhtaṣar Al Muzanī, Nihāyah Al Maṭlab, Imām Al Juwaynī Raḥimahullah states that the Shafi’ī’ scholars are unanimous upon the impermissibility of a woman leading a mixed gender congregation in obligatory Ṣalāh. Hence, he writes:

 

وَلَكِنَّهُ مُتَّفَقٌ عَلَيْهِ لَا نَعْرِفُ فِيْهِ خِلَافًا 

Translation:

 

“However, it is agreed upon, we do not know any difference of opinion in it”

 

[Nihāyah Al Maṭlab, volume 2, page 379, (Jeddah: Dārul Minhāj, 2007) ed. ‘Abdul ‘Azīm]

 

Dr. Brown then does well to give the impression that the consensus of the prohibition of women leading mixed genders in congregational prayer has been made by the later scholars.

 

He writes:

 

“The claim of consensus made by Gomaa and others is unconvincing in light of this dissent”

 

He says:

 

“Even those who insist on such late-round consensus must recognise…”

 

The great scholar and jurist, Imām Abū Bakr Al Jassās, who passed away in 370 AH and was fifteen years old at the time of Imām Al Ṭabarī Raḥimahullah (d.310 AH)’s death, and who was also no short of a luminary scholar praised by the likes of Al Khatīb Al Baghdādī Raḥimahullah (d.463 AH)[3], writes:

 

أَمَّا الْمَرْأَةُ فَلَا خِلَافَ فِيْ امْتِنَاعِ جَوَازِ اقْتِدَاءِ الرَّجُلِ بِهَا 

Translation:

 

“As for a woman, there is no difference of opinion in it being impermissible for a man to follow her [in Ṣalāh]”[4]

 

[Sharḥ Mukhtaṣar Al Ṭaḥāwī, volume 2, page 68, (Beirut: Dārul Bashāir Al Islāmiyyah, 2010), ed. Said Bakdash]

 

The great Muḥaddith Ibn Ḥazm Al Zahirī Raḥimahullah (d.456 AH) writes in Marātib Al Ijmā':

وَاتَّفَقُوْا أَنَّ الْمَرْأَةَ لَا تَؤُمُّ الرِّجَالَ وَهُمْ يَعْلَمُوْنَ أَنَّهَا امْرَأَةٌ فَإِنْ فَعَلُوْا فَصَلَاتُهُمْ فَسَادَةٌ بِإِجْمَاعٍ 

 

Translation:

 

“And they have agreed that a woman shall not be an Imām for men when they know that she is a woman, and if they do this, then their Ṣalāh is invalid through consensus

 

[Marātib Al Ijmā', page 33, Dārul Ifāq Al Jadīdah]

 

One will notice that Ibn Ḥazm Al Zahirī Raḥimahullah (d.456 AH) adds the condition ‘when they know that she is a woman’ as he was aware of the view of Imām Abū Thawr Raḥimahullah (d.240 AH) and Imām Al Muzanī Raḥimahullah (d.264 AH).

 

Ibn ‘Abdil Barr Raḥimahullah (d.463 AH) writes in Al Istidhkār: 

 

وَأَجْمَعَ الْعُلَمَاءُ عَلَى أَنَّ الرِّجَالَ لَا يَؤُمُّهُمُ النِّسَاءَ 

 

Translation:

 

“And the scholars have a consensus that a woman shall not be an Imām for men”

 

[Al Istidhkār, volume 2, page 77, Dār Iḥyā Al Turāth Al ‘Arabī]

 

Ibn Qudāmah Al Maqdisī Raḥimahullah (d.620 AH) writes: 

 

وَلَا خِلَافَ فِيْ أَنَّهَا لَا تَؤُمُّهُمْ فِي الْفَرَائِضِ 

 

Translation:

 

“And there is no difference of opinion that she shall not lead them in the obligatory Ṣalāh”

 

[Al Mughnī, volume 2, page 414, (Cairo: Dārul Ḥadīth, 1995), ed. Muḥammad Sharaf Al Dīn and Muḥammad Al Sayyid]

 

It should be noted that Ibn Qudāmah Al Maqdisī Raḥimahullah (d.620 AH) has made this statement after mentioning the views of Imām Abū Thawr Raḥimahullah (d.240 AH), and Imām Al Muzanī Raḥimahullah (d.264 AH).

 

The great Shafi’ī’ scholar, Ibn Al Qaṭtān Raḥimahullah (d.628 AH) writes:

 

وَاتَّفَقُوْا أَنَّ الْمَرْأَةَ لَا تَؤُمُّ الرِّجَالَ وَهُمْ يَعْلَمُوْنَ أَنَّهَا امْرَأَةٌ وَإِنْ فَعَلُوْا فَصَلَاتُهُمْ فَسَادَةٌ بِإِجْمَاعٍ 

 

Translation:

 

“And they have agreed that a woman shall not be an Imām for men when they know that she is a woman, and if they do this, then their Ṣalāh is invalid through consensus

 

[Al Iqnā’ Fī Masāil Al Ijmā’, volume 1, page 144 (Cairo: Al Fārūq Al Ḥadithiyyah, 2003) ed. Ḥasan ibn Fawzā]

 

‘Allāmah Ibn Al Hummām Raḥimahullah (d.816 AH) writes

 

وَبِدَلَالَةِ الْإِجْمَاعِ عَلَى عَدْمِ جَوَازِ إِمَامِتِهَا لِلرَّجُلِ 

 

Translation:

 

“And through evidence of a consensus upon the impermissibility of her leading the Ṣalāh for men”

 

[Fatḥul Qadīr, volume 1, page 312, (Peishawar: Maktabah Al Ḥaqqāniyyah, n.a)]

 

‘Allamah Badr Al Dīn Al ‘Aynī Raḥimahullah (d.885 AH) writes:

 

وَفِي الْمُجْتَبَى يُتَمَسَّكُ فِي الْمَسْأَلَةِ بِالْإِجْمَاعِ وَالْمُرَادُ بِهِ إِجْمَاعُ الْمُجْتَهِدِيْنَ 

 

Translation:

 

“And it is mentioned in Al Mujtabā [of Al Zahidī] that an evidence in the issue [of the impermissibility of women leading a mixed congregation] is consensus, and by consensus it is meant the consensus of the Mujtahid scholars

 

[Al Bināyah Sharḥul Hidāyah, volume 2, page 392 (Multan: Al Maktabah Al Ḥaqqāniyyah, n.a)]

 

Ibn Ḥajar Al Haytamī Raḥimahullah (d.974 AH) writes:

 

(وَلَا تَصِحُّ قُدْوَةُ رَجُلٍ) أَيْ ذَكَرٍ وَلَوْ صَبِيًّا (وَلَا خُنْثَى) مُشْكِلٌ (بِإِمْرَأَةٍ وَلَا خُنْثَى) مُشْكِلٌ إِجْمَاعًا فِي الرَّجُلِ بِالْمَرْأَةِ  

 

Translation:

 

“And the the peforming of Ṣalāh of a man, i.e. a male even if it is a child, and [the peforming of Ṣalāh of] a mixed hermaphrodite, is impermissible behind a woman or a mixed hermaphrodite; by consensus in a man [performingalāh] behind a woman

 

[Tuḥfatul Muḥtāj, volume 1, page 289, (Beirut: Dārul Kutub Al ‘Ilmiyyah, 2011) ed. ‘Abdullah Maḥmūd]

 

The great Shafi'ī' scholar, Qāḍī Ṣafad, Muḥammad ibn ‘Abdil Raḥmān Al Dimishqī Al ‘Uthmānī Raḥimahullah (d. post 780 AH) writes:

 

وَلَا تَصِحُّ إِمَامَةُ الْمَرْأَةِ بِالرِّجَالِ فِي الْفَرَائِضِ بِالْإِتِّفَاقِ 

 

Translation:

 

“And it is not permissible for a woman to be an Imām for men in the obligatory prayers by agreement [of the scholars]”

 

[Raḥmatul Ummah Fī Ikhtilāf Al A’immah, page 53, Al Maktabah Al Tawfīqiyyah]

 

Sheikh Ẓafar Aḥmad ‘Uthmānī Raḥimahullah (d.1394 AH) writes:

 

وَلَكِنَّ الْمُجْتَهِدِيْنَ اسْتَنْبَطُوْا مِنْهَا بِذَوْقِهِمْ فَسَادَ صَلَاةِ الرِّجَالِ خَلْفَهُنَّ وَأَجْمَعُوْا عَلَى ذَلِكَ  

 

Translation:

 

“However, the Mujtahid scholars extracted from this, based upon their methodology, the invalidity of the Salah of the men who perform Salah behind them (women), and they held a consensus over this

 

[I’lā Al Sunan, volume 4, page 252, (Karachi: Idāratul Qur’ān, 1414 AH)]

 

The authors of Al Mawsū'ah Al Fiqhiyyah Al Kuwaytiyyah write:

 

يُشْتَرَطُ لِإِمَامَةِ الرِّجَالِ أَنْ يَكُوْنَ الْإِمَامُ ذَكَرًا فَلَا تَصِحُّ إِمَامَةُ الْمَرْأَةِ لِلرِّجَالِ وَهَذَا مُتَّفَقٌ عَلَيْهِ بَيْنَ الْفُقَهَاءِ

 

Translation:

 

“To be an Imām for men [in Ṣalāh], it is a condition that the Imām is a man, thus it is impermissible for a woman to be an Imam for men, and this is agreed upon amongst the jurists

 

[Al Mawsū'ah Al Fiqhiyyah Al Kuwaytiyyah, volume 6, page 204, Wuzāratul Awqāf]

 

It is worth noting that Imām Al Nawawī Raḥimahullah (d.676 AH) has also related a strong statement in support of the view of impermissibility, though he then goes on to quote the supposed statements of the three scholars in question.

 

Commenting on the view of the impermissibility of women leading obligatory congregational Ṣalāh of men, he writes:

 

هَذَا مَذْهَبُنَا وَمَذْهَبُ جَمَاهِيْرِ الْعُلَمَاءِ مِنَ السَّلَفِ وَالْخَلَفِ رَحِمَهُمُ اللهُ وَحَكَاهُ الْبَيْهَقِيْ عَنِ الْفُقَهَاءِ السَّبْعَةِ فُقَهَاءِ الْمَدِيْنَةِ التَّابِعِيْنَ وَهُوَ مَذْهَبُ مَالِكٍ وَأَبِيْ حَنِيْفَةَ وَسُفْيَانَ وَأَحْمَدَ وَدَاوُدَ  

Translation:

 

“This is our view and the view of the majority of scholars from the early scholars and the late scholars, may Allah have mercy upon them, and Al Bayhaqī has related it from the seven jurists of Madīnah who were Tabi’ūn, and it is the view of [Imām] Mālik, [Imām] Abū Ḥanīfah, [Imām] Sufyān [Al Thawrī], [Imām] Aḥmad [Ibn Ḥanbal], and [Imām] Dāwūd [Al Ẓāhirī]”

 

[Al Majmū’ Sharḥ Al Muhadhab, volume 4, page 151, (Jeddah: Maktabatul Irshād, n.a.) ed. Muḥammad Najīb Al Muti’ī’]

 

Even if, perchance, the view of Imām Al Ṭabarī Raḥimahullah (d.310 AH) is established, a lengthy roster of scholars have mentioned that a dissenting opinion shall be invalidated by a consensus. ‘Allāmah Ibn Al Hummām Raḥimahullah (d.861 AH) writes:

 

أَكْثَرُ الْحَنَفِيَّةِ وَالْمُحَقِّقُوْنَ مِنَ الشَّافِعِيَّةِ وَغَيْرِهِمْ لَا يُشْتَرَطُ لِحُجِّيَّتِهِ انْتِفَاءُ سَبْقِ خِلَافٍ مُسْتَقَرٍّ 

Translation:

 

“The majority of the Ḥanafīs and the researchers from the Shāfi’ī’s and others do not make a condition for it (consensus) to be a proof that no difference of opinion settles before it”

 

[Al Taḥrīr, volume 3, page 112, (Beirut: Dārul Kutub Al ‘Ilmiyyah, 1999) ed. ‘Abdullah Maḥmūd]

 

‘Allāmah Zarkashī Raḥimahullah (d.794 AH) writes:

 

وَبِهِ قَالَ أَكْثَرُ الْحَنَفِيَّةِ مِنْهُمْ مُحَمَّدُ بْنُ الْحَسَنِ وَأَبُوْ يُوْسُفَ وَالْكَرْخِيُّ...قَالَ الْأُسْتَاذُ أَبُوْ مَنْصُوْرٍ "وَهُوَ قَوْلُ أَصْحَابِ الرَّأْيِ وَأَكْثَرِ الْمُعْتَزِلَةِ وَالْحَارِثِ بْنِ أَسَدٍ الْمُحَاسِبِيِّ وَأَبِيْ عَلِيِّ بْنِ خَيْرَان وَكَذَا حَكَاهُ عَنْهُمَا الْقَفَّالُ الشَّاشِيُّ وَقَالَ إِنَّهُ الْأَصْوَبُ وَاخْتَارَهُ الْإِصْطَخْرَيُّ وَالْقَاضِيْ أَبُو الطَّيِّبِ وَابْنُ الصَّبَّاغِ وَالرَّازِيُّ وَأَتْبَاعُهُ

Translation:

 

“And this is what has been said by the majority of the Ḥanafīs, from them Muḥammad ibn Al Ḥasan, Abū Yūsuf, and Al Karkhī…the teacher Abū Manṣūr said, ‘It is the view of the people of Al Ra’y and the majority of the Mu’tazilites and Al Ḥārith ibn Asad Al Muḥāsibī and Abū ‘Alī ibn Khayran’ and Al Qaffāl Al Shāshī has related it from them like this and has said, ‘It is the more correct view’ and it has been adopted by Iṣtakhray and Al Qāḍī Abū Al Ṭayyib and Ibn Al Sabbāgh and Al Rāzī and his followers”

 

[Al Baḥr Al Muḥīṭ, volume 4, page 524 (Cairo: Dār Al Ṣafwah, 1988) ed. ‘Umar Sulaymān]

 

Indeed, ‘Allāmah Ibn Al Hummām Raḥimahullah (d.861 AH) mentions that this consensus (one which has been preceded by a difference of opinion) shall be a consensus in which there is some doubt (Shubhah). Dr. Brown interprets this as a ‘probable consensus’ giving the indication that it holds little weight.

 

In fact, the notion that this consensus has some doubt (Shubhah) in it means that one who denies it shall not be considered an apostate or misguided. Ibn Amīr Al Ḥāj Al Ḥalabī Raḥimahullah (d.879 AH) writes:

 

بِمَنْزِلَةِ خَبْرِ الْوَاحِدِ فَإِنَّهُ لَا يَكْفُرُ جَاحِدُهُ وَلَا يُضَلَّلُ

Translation:

 

“It is equivalent to a single report, for indeed the one who denies it shall not be an apostate and shall not be considered misguided”

 

[Al Taqrīr Wal Taḥbīr, volume 3, page 114, (Beirut: Dārul Kutub Al ‘Ilmiyyah, 1999) ed. ‘Abdullah Maḥmūd]

 

As for following the action upon which this consensus has taken place, these scholars agree that it is necessary (wājib).

 

Ḥāfiẓ Al Dīn Al Nasafī Raḥimahullah (d.710 AH) writes:

 

(ثُمَّ إِجْمَاعُهُمْ عَلَى قَوْلِ مَنْ سَبَقَهُمْ فِيْهِ مُخَالِفٌ) فَإِنَّهُ بِمَنْزِلَةِ خَبْرِ الْوَاحِدِ فِيْ كَوْنِهِ مُوْجِبًا لِلْعَمَلِ غَيْرَ مُوْجِبٍ لِلْعِلْمِ 

Translation:

 

“(Then their consensus upon a view in which a dissenter has passed) for indeed this is equivalent to a single in it being such that it necessitates action but not belief”

 

[Kashful Muṣannif ‘Alal Manār, volume 2, page 194 (Karachi: Qadīmī Kutub Khānā, n.a)]

 

All of the above is made stronger when we consider that a consensus was related by Imām Abū Bakr Al Jassās Raḥimahullah (d.370 AH), who lived during the time of Imām Al Ṭabarī Raḥimahullah (d.310 AH).

 

Also, when there are differing views as to the actual position of Imām Abū Thawr Raḥimahullah (d.240 AH) and Imam and Al Tabari Rahimahullah (d.310 AH), it could be argued that there was no actual difference of opinion over the impermissibility of women leading men in obligatory congregational prayer. In this case, the consensus would be very strong indeed.

 

Even if the views of the three scholars are established the way Dr. Brown claims, these views have been labelled as irregular (Shādh) by the scholars.

 

In his commentary upon Mukhtaṣar Al Muzanī, the early Shafi’ī’ jurist Abul Ḥasan Al Māwardī Raḥimahullah (d.450 AH) writes after quoting Imām Al Shafi’ī’ Raḥimahullah’s ruling of impermissibility of women leading obligatory congregational prayer for mixed genders:

 

وَهَذَا صَحِيْحٌ لَا يَجُوْزُ لِلرَّجُلِ أَنْ يَأْتَمَّ بِالْمَرْأَةِ بِحَالٍ فَإِنْ فَعَلَ أَعَادَ صَلَاتَهُ وَهَذَا قَوْلُ كَافَّةِ الْفُقَهَاءِ إِلَّا أَبَا ثَوْرٍ فَإِنَّهُ شَذَّ عَنِ الْجَمَاعَةِ فَجَوَّزَ لِلرَّجُلِ أَنْ يَأْتَمَّ بِالْمَرْأَةِ 

Translation:

 

“And this is correct, it is impermissible for a man to perform Ṣalāh behind a woman under any circumstance. Hence, if he does it, he shall repeat his Ṣalāh, and this is the view of the overwhelming majority of jurists except Abū Thawr for indeed he has deviated from the group and has permitted for a man to perform Ṣalāh behind a woman”

 

[Al Ḥāwī Al Kabīr, volume 2, page 326, (Beirut: Dārul Kutub Al ‘Ilmiyyah, 1994)]

 

‘Abdul ‘Azīz ibn Bazīzah Al Tūnisī Raḥimahullah (d. 606 – 673 AH) writes:

 

وَشَذَّ قَوْمٌ مِنْهُمْ أَبُوْ ثَوْرٍ وَالطَّبَرِيُّ فَأَجَازُوْا إِمَامَتَهَا مُطْلَقًا لِلرِّجَالِ وَالنِّسَاءِ

Translation:

 

“A group have adopted an irregular opinion(Shādh), from them is Abū Thawr and Al abarī, thus they have permitted for her to be an Imām in general, for men and women”

 

[Rawḍatul Mustabīn, volume 1, page 369 (Beirut: Dār Ibn Ḥazm, 2010), ed: ‘Abdul Laṭīf]

 

‘Allamah Badr Al Dīn Al ‘Aynī Raḥimahullah (d.885 AH) writes:

 

وَشَذَّ أَبُوْ ثَوْرِ وَالْمُزَنِيُّ وَمُحَمَّدُ بْنُ جَرِيْرٍ الطَّبَرِيُّ فَأَجَازُوْا إِمَامَةَ النِّسَاءِ عَلَى الْإِطْلَاقِ لِلرِّجَالِ وَالنِّسَاءِ

Translation:

 

Abū Thawr, Al Muzanī, and Muammad ibn Jarīr Al abarī have adopted an irregular opinion (Shādh) as they have permitted for a woman to be an Imām in general, for men and women”

 

[Al Bināyah Sharḥul Hidāyah, volume 2, page 392 (Multan: Al Maktabah Al Ḥaqqāniyyah, n.a)]

 

In fact, even the view that we have mentioned above that Imām Abū Thawr Raḥimahullah (d.240 AH), and Imām Al Muzanī Raḥimahullah (d.264 AH) had actually adopted has also been labelled irregular (Shadh) by the scholars.

 

Ibn Ḥajar Al Haytamī Raḥimahullah (d.974 AH) writes:

 

...إِجْمَاعًا فِي الرَّجُلِ بِالْمَرْأَةِ إِلَّا مَنْ شَذَّ كَالْمُزَنِيْ 

 

Translation:

 

“A consensus in a man [performing Ṣalāh] behind a woman except those who deviated such as Al Muzanī”

 

[Tuḥfatul Muḥtāj, volume 1, page 289, (Beirut: Dārul Kutub Al ‘Ilmiyyah, 2011) ed. ‘Abdullah Maḥmūd]

 

Adopting irregular (Shādh) opinions has been heavily criticised by the scholars.

 

Imām Al Awzā’ī’ Raḥimahullah (d.157 AH) said:

مَنْ أَخَذَ بِنَوَادِرِ الْعُلَمَاءِ خَرَجَ مِنَ الْإِسْلَامِ 

Translation:

 

“Whoever takes the odd opinions of the scholars has left Islām”

 

[Tārīkh Al Islām, volume 4, page 120, (n.a: Dārul Gharb Al Islāmī, 2003) ed. Bashār ‘Awwād Ma’rūf]

 

Ibn ‘Abdil Barr Raḥimahullah (d.463 AH) has narrated from ‘Abdul Raḥmān ibn Mahdī Raḥimahullah (d.198 AH) that he said:

 

لَا يَكُوْنُ إِمَامًا فِي الْعِلْمِ مَنْ أَخَذَ بِالشَّاذِ

Translation:

 

“He cannot be a scholar in the field of [Islāmic] knowledge who takes irregular opinions (Shādh)”

 

[Jāmi’ Bayān Al ‘Ilm Wa Faḍlih, volume 2, page 820, (Riyad: Dār Ibn Al Jawzī, 1994) ed. Abul Ashbāl]

 

This is all beyond the consideration that the independent views of scholars such as Imām Al Ṭabarī Raḥimahullah (d.310 AH) should not be acted upon until their views are authentically established from them, which is not the case here as there is no explicit statement found from Imām Abū Thawr Raḥimahullah (d.240 AH) and Imām Al Ṭabarī Raḥimahullah (d.310 AH) while there are differences over their actual view.

 

Ibn Amīr Al Ḥāj Al Ḥalabī Raḥimahullah (d.879 AH) writes:

 

وَحَاصِلُ هَذَا أَنَّهُ امْتَنَعَ تَقْلِيدُ غَيْرِ هَؤُلَاءِ الْأَئِمَّةِ لِتَعَذُّرِ نَقْلِ حَقِيقَةِ مَذْهَبِهِمْ؛ وَعَدَمِ ثُبُوتِهِ حَقَّ الثُّبُوتِ لَا لِأَنَّهُ لَا يُقَلَّدُ

 

Translation:

 

“The summary of this is that it is impermissible to follow anyone besides these [four] scholars, due to it being difficult to record their actual views and due to them (views) not being established properly, not because they (the other Mujtahidūn) were not worthy of being followed

 

[Al Taqrīr Wal Taḥbīr, volume 2, page 451, (Beirut: Dārul Kutub Al ‘Ilmiyyah, 1999)]

 

Despite Dr. Brown’s claims that all three scholars were Imāms of a school of Fiqh, in consideration of how Al Qaffāl Al Shāfi’ī’ Raḥimahullah (d.507 AH), Al Mazirī Raḥimahullah (d.536 AH), Al Kākī Raḥimahullah (d.749 AH), Al ‘Aynī Raḥimahullah (d.885 AH), and Imām Muḥammad Al Shawkānī Raḥimahullah (d.1250 AH), have portrayed their views, it is obvious that their schools of Fiqh were not codified properly and their actual views cannot be ascertained with certainty.

 

The issue of the impermissibility of women leading congregational pray for mixed genders is some-what unique in the sense that three of the four Imāms from the four major schools of thought have explicitly mentioned that it is impermissible.

 

Imām Mālik Raḥimahullah (d.179) has mentioned as related in Al Mudawwanah in the chapter of Ṣalāh:

 

لَا تَؤُمُّ الْمَرْأَةُ 

Translation:

“A woman shall not be an Imām”

 

[Al Mudawwanah, volume 1, page 140 (Cairo: Darul Hadith, 2005), ed. ‘Amir Al Hazzār and ‘Abdullah Al Minshāwī]

 

Imām Muḥammad ibn Al Ḥasan Al Shaybānī Raḥimahullah (d.189 AH) writes in Al Aṣl:

 

لَا يَنْبَغِيْ لِلْمَرْأَةِ أَنْ تَؤُمَّ الرَّجُلَ 

 

Translation: 

“A woman should not be an Imām for a man”

 

[Al Aṣl, volume 1, page 256, (Beirut: Dār Ibn Ḥazm, 2012) ed. Muḥammad Bwenukālin]

 

Imām Muḥammad ibn Al Ḥasan Al Shaybānī Raḥimahullah (d.189 AH) has not mentioned a difference of opinion over this impermissibility. This ruling of impermissibility is mentioned under the chapter of Ṣalāh. At the beginning of the chapter of Ṣalāh, Imām Muḥammad ibn Al Ḥasan Al Shaybānī Raḥimahullah (d.189 AH) writes:

 

قَدْ بَيَّنْتُ لَكُمْ قَوْلَ أَبِيْ حَنِيْفَةَ وَأَبِيْ يُوْسُفَ وَقَوْلِيْ وَمَا لَمْ يَكُنْ فِيْهِ اخْتِلَافٌ فَهُوَ قَوْلُنَا جَمِيْعًا 

Translation:

 

“I have narrated (i.e. will narrate) for you the view of Abū Ḥanīfah, Abū Yūsuf, and my view. And wherever there is no difference of opinion [in the book], then it is our collective view

 

[Al Aṣl, volume 1, page 5, (Beirut: Dār Ibn Ḥazm, 2012) ed. Dr. Muḥammad Bwenukālin]

 

The phrase ‘should not’ here refers to impermissibility as mentioned by a plethora of Ḥanafī jurists, including Imām Al Qudūrī Raḥimahullah (d.428 AH) who writes in Sharḥ Mukhtaṣar Al Karkhī:

 

وَالْأَمْرُ بِتَأْخِيْرِهَا نَهْيٌ عَنِ الصَّلَاةِ إِلَى جَانِبِهَا وَخَلْفِهَا 

Translation:

 

“The command of moving them (the women) back [in the rows of Ṣalāh] is a prohibition from performing Ṣalāh next to her or behind her

 

[Sharḥ Mukhtaṣar Al Karkhī, أ/ق١٠٥/١, Al Maktabāt Al Hindiyyah]

[Ghāyah Al Bayān, أ/ق٦٥/١, Fayḍullah Effendī]

 

Shamsul A’immah Al Sarakhsī Raḥimahullah (d.483 AH)[5] writes in Al Mabsūṭ:

 

الْمَرْأَةُ لَا تَصْلُحُ لِإِمَامَةِ الرِّجَالِ 

Translation:

 

“A woman does not have the capability to be an Imam for men”

 

[Al Mabsūṭ: volume 1, page 180 (Damascus: Dār Al Nawādir, 2013)]

 

‘Allāmah ‘Alī ibn Abī Bakr Al Murghīnānī Raḥimahullah (d.593 AH) writes:

 

وَلَا يَجُوْزُ لِلرٍّجَالِ أَنْ يَقْتَدُوْا بِإِمْرَأَةٍ 

Translation:

 

“It is impermissible for men to perform Ṣalāh behind a woman [as their Imam]”

 

[Al Hidāyah Sharḥ Bidāyatul Mubtadī, volume 2, page 400, (Multan: Al Maktabah Al Ḥaqqāniyyah, n.a.) – From Al Bināyah Edition]

 

This is supported by the statement of the master researcher Dr. Muḥammad Bwenukālin who writes:

 

وَتُسْتَعْمَلُ أَلْفَاظُ "لَا يَنْبَغِيْ" "لَيْسَ يَنْبَغِيْ" بِمَعْنَى عَدْمِ الْجَوَازِ أَوِ الْبُطْلَانِ أَحْيَانًا

 

Translation:

 

“The words ‘should not’ ‘it is not appropriate’ are at times used for impermissibility or invalidation”

 

[Muqaddimah of Al Aṣl, page 257, (Beirut: Dār Ibn Ḥazm, 2012) ed. Muḥammad Bwenukālin]

 

This statement has been reiterated by Aḥmad ibn Muḥammad Al Naqīb in his book, Al Madhab Al Ḥanafī. [Al Madhab Al Ḥanafī, volume 1, page 378-379 (Riyad: Maktabah Al Rushd, 1998)]

 

Imām Al Shāfi’ī’ Raḥimahullah (d.204 AH) said as quoted by Imām Al Muzanī Raḥimahullah in his Al Mukhtaṣar:

 

وَلَا يَأْتَمُّ رَجُلٌ بِإِمْرَأَةٍ وَلَا بِخُنْثَى فَإِنْ فَعَلَ أَعَادَ 

Translation:

 

“A man shall not perform Ṣalāh behind a woman nor a hermaphrodite, if he does so he shall repeat [the Ṣalāh]”

 

[Mukhtaṣar Al Muzanī, page 37, (Beirut: Dārul Kutub Al ‘Ilmiyyah, 1997)]

 

Imām Al Shafi’ī’ Raḥimahullah (d.204 AH) has emphatically written in Al Umm:

 

وَلَا يَجُوْزُ أَنْ تَكُوْنَ إِمْرَأَةٌ إِمَامَ رَجُلٍ فِيْ صَلَاةٍ بِحَالٍ أَبَدًا

Translation:

 

“It is not permissible for a woman to be an Imām for a man in Ṣalāh under any circumstance at all”

 

[Al Umm, volume 2, page 321, (n.a: Dārul Wafā, 2001) ed. Rif’at Fawzī]

 

This was also the view of Imām Aḥmad ibn Ḥanbal Raḥimahullah (d.241 AH). ‘Allāmah Mardāwī Raḥimahullah (d.885 AH) writes:

 

وَلَا تَصِحُّ إِمَامَةُ الْمَرْأَةِ لِلرَّجُلِ هَذَا الْمَذْهَبُ مُطْلَقًا قَالَ فِي الْمُسْتَوْعَبِ هَذَا الصَّحِيْحُ مِنَ الْمَذْهَبِ وَنَصَرَهُ الْمُصَنِّفُ وَاخْتَارَهُ أَبُو الْخَطَّابِ وَابْنُ عَبْدُوْسٍ فِيْ تَذْكِرَتِهِ وَجَزَمَ بِهِ فِي الْكَافِيْ وَالْمُحَرَّرِ وَالْوَجِيْزِ وَالْمُنَوَّرِ وَالْمُنْتَخَبِ وَتَجْرِيْدِ الْعِنَايَةِ وَالْإِفَادَاتِ وَقَدَّمَهُ فِي الْفُرُوْعِ وَالرِّعَايَتَيْنِ وَالْحَاوِيَيْنِ وَالنَّظَمِ وَمَجْمَعِ الْبَحْرَيْنِ وَالشَّرْحِ وَالْفَائِقِ وَإِدْرَاكِ الْغَايَةِ وَغَيْرِهِمْ وَهُوَ ظَاهِرُ كَلَامِ الْخَرْقِيِّ

Translation:

 

“And it is invalid for a woman to be an Imām for a man, this is the unconditional view of the Madhab. He has said in Al Mustaw’ab, ‘This is the correct view from the Madhab’, and the author has supported this, and Abul Khattāb has preferred this [as has] Ibn ‘Abdūs  in his Al Tadhkirah, and this has been asserted in Al Kāfī and Al Muḥarrar and Al Wajīz and Al Munawwar and Al Muntakhab and Tajrīd Al ‘Ināyah and Ifādat, and he has put it first in Al Furū’ and the two Ri’āyah books and two Al Ḥāwi books and Al Naẓm and Majma’ Al Baḥrain and Al Sharḥ and Al Fāiq and Idrāk Al Ghāyah and others. It is the apparent of the statement of Khārqī”

 

[Al Inṣāf Fī Ma’rifah Al Rājiḥ Minal Khilāf, volume 2, page 263-264, n.a.: n.a, 1955) ed. Muḥammad Ḥāmid Al Fayqī]

 

Dr. Brown attempts to validate his stance by stating that “a cadre of Hanbali scholars had allowed women to lead women to lead men and women in the optional nightly prayers in Ramadan (Tarawih) if the women in question were learned in the Qur’an and all the available males ignorant”.

 

[Misquoting Muhammad by Dr. Jonathan AC Brown, page 193 – Oneworld – ISBN 978-1-78074-420-9]

 

Although a number of Ḥanbalīs have adopted this view, the view has been considered a weak view in the Ḥanbalī school of Fiqh by Ibn Qudāmah Al Maqdisī Raḥimahullah (d.620 AH). In fact, after a half-a-page discussion on the issue, Ibn Qudāmah Al Maqdisī Raḥimahullah (d.620 AH) concludes:

 

...تَحَكُّمٌ يُخَالِفُ الْأُصُوْلَ بِغَيْرِ دَلِيْلٍ فَلَا يَجُوْزُ الْمَصِيْرُ إِلَيْهِ 

 

Translation:

 

“… [It] is a ruling which contradicts the principles without evidence, and thus it is impermissible to turn towards it”

 

[Al Mughnī, volume 2, page 414, (Cairo: Dārul Ḥadīth, 1995), ed. Muḥammad Sharaf Al Dīn and Muḥammad Al Sayyid]

 

Although Ḥāfiẓ Ibn Taymiyyah Raḥimahullah (d.728 AH) states that this is a famous narration from Imām Aḥmad ibn Ḥanbal Raḥimahullah (d.241 AH), he too does not mention any opposition to the consensus related by Ibn Ḥazm Al Ẓāhirī Raḥimahullah (d.456 AH) of it being impermissible for a woman to lead Ṣalāh in obligatory congregational prayers for mixed genders.

 

[Naqd Marātib Al Ijmā’, page 290 (Beirut: Dār Ibn Ḥazm, 1998) ed. Ḥasan Aḥmad]

[Majmū’ Al Fatāwā, volume 12, page 140, (Cairo: Dārul Ḥadith, 2006)]

 

Perhaps not entirely related to our discussion, but in attempting to prove that patriarchy and later scholars negatively influenced women’s rights in Islām, Dr. Brown writes:

 

Abu Hanifah concluded that women did not need a male guardian’s permission to marry and this became the main stance on this issue in the Hanafi school. 

 

[Misquoting Muhammad, page 197-198]

 

In this passage, Dr. Brown has referenced an article written by Rudolf Peters titled ‘What does it mean to be an official Madhab? Ḥanafism and the Ottoman Empire’

 

The actual view of Imām Abū Ḥanīfah Raḥimahullah (d.150 AH) was that the marriage of a woman who marries herself to a man who is compatible for her without the permission of her guardian is valid and the guardians do not have a right to annul the marriage. However, if she marries a man who is not compatible for her, then her guardians shall have a right to rescind the marriage.

 

In Al Asl, the most important book in the Ḥanafī school of Fiqh and the source of its rulings, Imām Abū Ḥanīfah Raḥimahullah (d.150 AH)’s opinion has been mentioned:

 

وَإِذَا زَوَّجَتِ الْمَرْأَةُ بِكْرًا كَانَتْ أَوْ ثَيِّبًا نَفْسَهَا زَوْجًا بِشَاهِدَيْنِ وَهُوَ كُفْؤٌ لَهَا فَهُوَ جَائِزٌ ...وَإِنَّمَا يَبْطُلُ النِّكَاحُ إِذَا كَانَ غَيْرَ كُفْءٍ لَهَا  

Translation:

 

“And when a woman, whether she is virgin or not, marries herself to someone and he is compatible for her, then it is permissible…and indeed the marriage shall be annulled [by the guardians] when he is incompatible for her

 

 [Al Aṣl, volume 10, page 198, (Beirut: Dār Ibn Ḥazm, 2012) ed. Muḥammad Bwenukālin]

 

Peters also affirms this when he quotes Multaqa Al Abhur, as he writes:

 

“The authoritative rule, ascribed to Abu Hanifah, is that such a woman can validly contract her own marriage and that her marriage guardian can demand recission of the contract by the judge in the event she has married herself to a person who is not her coequal

 

By missing out that final crucial statement, Dr. Brown creates the impression that there is a huge difference between the view adopted by Imām Abū Ḥanīfah Raḥimahullah (d.150 AH) and the view adopted by one of his students. He then continues:

 

“But when employing their sultanic right to pick which legal opinion to make state law, the Ottomans had opted for an obscure opinion from a solitary early Hanafi scholar who did require a woman to secure her guardian’s approval

 

[Misquoting Muhammad, page 198]

 

It is unclear from Dr. Brown’s statement ‘a solitary Hanafi scholar’ whether he is referring to the opinion of Imām Muḥammad ibn Al Ḥasan Al Shaybānī Raḥimahullah (d.189 AH) or Imām Ḥasan ibn Ziyād Al Lu’lu’ī’ Raḥimahullah (d.204 AH).

 

The opinion of Imām Muḥammad ibn Al Ḥasan Al Shaybānī Raḥimahullah (d.189 AH) was that the marriage of a woman who marries without the permission of her guardians shall be suspended upon the permission of her guardians, irrespective of whether the husband is compatible or not. If the guardians allow the marriage, it shall be valid. However, if the husband is compatible and the guardians do not allow the marriage, then the judge shall allow the marriage.

 

[Sharḥ Mukhtaṣar Al Ṭaḥāwī, volume 4, page 256, (Beirut: Dārul Bashāir Al Islāmiyyah, 2010), ed. Said Bakdash]

According to Peters, this was the view imposed by the Ottoman Sultan. However, it would seem strange for Dr. Brown to refer to Imām Muḥammad ibn Al Ḥasan Al Shaybānī Raḥimahullah (d.189 AH) as ‘a solitary Hanafi scholar’, considering that he was one of, if not the, most celebrated Ḥanafī jurist in Islāmic history.

 

It seems more probable that Dr. Brown was referring to the view of Imām Ḥasan ibn Ziyād Al Lu’lu’ī’ Raḥimahullah (d.204 AH), a view which, according to Peters, was not the view that the Ottoman Sultan imposed, despite what Dr. Brown has written.

 

The opinion of Imām Ḥasan ibn Ziyād Al Lu’lu’ī’ Raḥimahullah (d.204 AH) was that the marriage of a woman who marries without the permission of her guardians to a man who is compatible shall be valid. In this case, the guardians shall not have a right to annul the marriage. However, if she marries a man who is incompatible without the permission of her guardians, then her marriage shall be invalid.

 

Regardless of which of the two opinions Dr. Brown intends, he has labelled the opinion as ‘obscure’ – giving an impression to the innocent reader that the view is an irregular opinion.

 

We shall present some reasons to show that neither of these opinions are obscure:

 

1-    The opinion of Imām Muḥammad ibn Al Ḥasan Al Shaybānī Raḥimahullah (d.189 AH) is supported by an explicit Ḥadīth. The Prophet Ṣallallāhu ‘Alayhi Wasallam said:

 

لَا نِكَاحَ إِلَّا بِوَلِيٍّ

Translation:

 

“There is no marriage except with [the permission of] a guardian”

 

[Sunan Al Tirmidhī, volume 2, page 568, (Beirut: Dār Al Risālah Al ‘Ālimiyyah, 2010) ed. Shaykh Shu’ayb Al Arnaout]

 

In fact, the opinion of Imām Muḥammad ibn Al Ḥasan Al Shaybānī Raḥimahullah (d.189 AH) has been explicitly mentioned in Al Aṣl, the most important book in the Ḥanafī school of Fiqh and the source of its rulings:

 

وَقَالَ مُحَمَّدُ بْنُ الْحَسَنِ لَا يَجُوْزُ النِّكَاحُ إِلَّا بِوَلِيٍّ وَإِنْ تَزَوَّجَتْ بِغَيْرِ أَمْرِ الْوَلِيِّ فَالنِّكَاحُ مَوْقُوْفٌ حَتَّى يُجِيْزَهُ الْوَلِيُّ أَوِ الْقَاضِيْ 

 

Translation:

 

“[Imām] Muḥammad ibn Al Ḥasan says, ‘Marriage is impermissible without [permission of] a guardian, if she marries without [the permission of] a guardian, then her marriage shall be suspended until the guardian allows it or the judge allows it”

 

[Al Aṣl, volume 10, page 199, (Beirut: Dār Ibn Ḥazm, 2012) ed. Dr. Muḥammad Bwenukālin]

 

2-    The opinion of Imām Ḥasan ibn Ziyād Al Lu’lu’ī’ Raḥimahullah (d.204 AH) was not an opinion adopted by the Ottomans alone, Ḥanafī jurists well before the Ottomans such as Ibn Al Hummām Raḥimahullah (d.861 AH) had adopted this opinion

 

[Fatḥul Qadīr, volume 3, page 157, (Peishawar: Maktabah Al Ḥaqqāniyyah, n.a)]

 

3-    Every opinion of the students of Imām Abū Hanifah Raḥimahullah (d.150 AH) was a narration from Imām Abū Hanifah Raḥimahullah (d.150 AH) himself.

 

‘Allāmah ‘Abdul Rashīd Al Walwāljī Raḥimahullah (d. post 540 AH) writes:

 

قَالَ أَبُوْ يُوْسُفَ رَضِيَ اللهُ عَنْهُ مَا قُلْتُ قَوْلًا خَالَفْتُ فِيْهِ أَبَا حَنِيْفَةَ رَضِيَ اللهُ عَنْهُ إِلَّا قَوْلًا قَدْ كَانَ قَالَهُ وَرُوِيَ عَنْ زُفَرَ رَضِيَ اللهُ عَنْهُ أَنَّهُ قَالَ مَا خَالَفْتُ أَبَا حَنِيْفَةَ رَضِيَ اللهُ عَنْهُ فِيْ شَيْءٍ إِلَّا قَدْ قَالَهُ ثُمَّ رَجَعَ عَنْهُ 

Translation:

 

“[Imām] Abū Yūsuf, may Allah be pleased with him, said, ‘I have not said a statement in which I have contradicted [Imām] Abū Ḥanīfah, may Allah be pleased with him, except that it was a statement that he himself had said’. It has been narrated from [Imām] Zufar, may Allah be pleased with him that he said, ‘I have not contradicted [Imām] Abū Ḥanīfah, may Allah be pleased with him in anything except that he himself had said and then moved away from it”

 

[Sharḥ ‘Uqūd Rasmil Muftī, page 371, (Beirut: Dārul Bashāir Al Islamiyyah, 2015), ed. Dr. Ṣalāḥ Abul Ḥāj]

 

Aḥmad ibn Muḥammad Al Ghaznawī Raḥimahullah (d.593 AH) writes:

 

رُوِيَ عَنْ جَمِيْعِ أَصْحَابِنَا مِنَ الْكِبَارِ كَأَبِيْ يُوْسُفَ وَمُحَمَّدٍ وَزُفَرَ وَالْحَسَنِ رَضِيَ اللهُ عَنْهُمْ أَنَّهُمْ قَالُوْا مَا قُلْنَا فِيْ مَسْأَلَةٍ قَوْلًا إِلَّا وَهُوَ رِوَايَتُنَا عَنْ أَبِيْ حَنِيْفَةَ رَضِيَ اللهُ عَنْهُ وَأَقْسَمُوْا عَلَيْهِ أَيْمَانًا غِلَاظًا 

Translation:

 

“It has been narrated from all our elderly jurists such as [Imām] Abū Yūsuf, [Imām] Muḥammad, [Imām] Zufar, [Imām] Al Ḥasan, may Allah be pleased with them, that they said, ‘We have not held a view in any issue except that it was a narration from [Imām] Abū Ḥanīfah, may Allah be pleased with him’ and they took strong oaths upon this”

 

[Al Ḥāwī Al Qudsī, volume 2, page 563 (Beirut: Dār Al Nawādir, 2011) ed. Dr. Ṣāliḥ Al ‘Ayli]

 

Accordingly, the opinions of the students of Imām Abū Hanifah Raimahullah (d.150 AH) hold a valid stance in the Hanafi school of Fiqh and cannot be labelled as obscure.

 

An early proof for this is found in the Al Nawāzil of Abū Layth Al Samarqandī (d.373 AH), an influential Ḥanafī jurist. He writes:

 

وَقَالَ نُصَيْرُ سَأَلْتُ شَدَّادًا فِيْ مَرَضِ الَّذِيْ مَاتَ إِنْ نَزَلَتْ بِنَا نَازِلَةٌ بَعْدَكَ وَنَحْنُ نَعْرِفُ قَوْلَ أَبِيْ حَنِيْفَةَ وَأَصْحَابَهَ رحمهم الله أَيَسَعُنَا أَنْ نعمل بِهِ وَنُفْتِيْ بِهِ قَالَ نَعَمْ قَالَ فَإِنْ اخْتَلَفُوْا قَالَ إِنْ كُنْتَ تَحْسُنُ أَنْ تَخْتَارَ فَاخْتَرْ مِنْ كَلَامِهِمْ وَإِنْ لَمْ تَحْسُنْ أَنْ تَخْتَارَ قَوْلُ أَبِيْ حَنِيْفَةَ أَنْجَى لَكَ

 

Translation:

 

“Nuṣayr [ibn Yaḥyā] said, ‘I asked Shaddād [ibn Ḥakῑm] during the illness in which he passed away, ‘If something (a Mas’alah) were to come upon us after your demise and we know the view of [Imām] Abū Ḥanῑfah and his students, is it permissible for us to use it and issue Fatwā according to it?’ He replied, ‘Yes’, he (Nuṣayr) asked, ‘and if they have differed amongst themselves?’ He (Shaddād) replied, ‘If you have the capability to choose (you are from the first four categories of Fuqahā), then choose from their statements, and if you do not have the capability to choose (you are not from the first four categories of Fuqahā), then the view of [Imām] Abū anfah is safest for you’”

 

[Al Nawāzil, ا/ق۲٣٤, Al Maktabāt Al Hindiyyah]

 

Shaddād ibn Ḥakīm Raḥimahullah (d.210 AH) was a student of Imām Abū Ḥanifah Raḥimahullah (d.150 AH) and was 7 years older than Imām Muḥammad ibn Al Ḥasan Raḥimahullah (d.189 AH).

 

In conclusion, the Ottomans did not issue a Fatwā upon an ‘obscure’ view.

 

It seems that Dr. Brown’s main purpose in presenting this argument was to show that the later scholars adopted views that were detrimental to the freedom of women, indicating that the same has occurred with the issue of prohibiting women from leading congregational prayer. This argument is flawed for the following reasons:

 

1-    Imām Abū Ḥanīfah Raḥimahullah (d.150 AH) also added the stipulation that if a woman marries a man who is not compatible for her, then her guardians shall have a right to rescind the marriage. Thus, in terms of the role of a guardian in the marriage of a woman, there is not a huge difference between the views of Imām Abū Ḥanifah Raḥimahullah (d.150 AH), Imām Muḥammad ibn Al Ḥasan Raḥimahullah (d.189 AH), and Imām Ḥasan ibn Ziyād Al Lu’lu’ī’ Raḥimahullah (d.204 AH).

 

2-    There was a reason as to why Imām Abū Ḥanīfah Raḥimahullah (d.150 AH)’s opinion was not adopted by the later Ḥanafī jurists. It was not to simply undermine the rights of women. Shamsul A’immah Al Sarakhsī Raḥimahullah (d.483 AH) writes:

 

وَعَلَى رِوَايَةِ الْحَسَنِ رَحِمَهُ اللهُ تَعَالَى قَالَ إِذَا زَوَّجَتْ نَفْسَهَا مِنْ غَيْرِ كُفْءٍ لَمْ يَجُز النِّكَاحُ أَصْلًا وَهُوَ أَقْرَبُ إِلَى الْإِحْتِيَاطِ فَلَيْسَ كُلُّ وَلِيٍّ يَحْتَسِبُ فِي الْمُرَافَعَةِ إِلَى الْقَاضِيْ وَلَا كُلُّ قَاضٍ يَعْدِلُ

Translation:

 

“Based upon the narration of Al Ḥasan, may Allah have mercy upon him, he (Imām Abū Ḥanīfah) said, ‘If she marries herself to someone who is incompatible, then the marriage is completely invalid’. This [position] is more precautionary, for indeed, not every guardian can properly raise the issue to a judge and not every judge is just

[Al Mabsūt, volume 5, page 13 (Damascus: Dār Al Nawādir, 2013)]

 

Thus, it was due to legitimate impracticalities in following the opinion of Imām Abū Ḥanīfah Raḥimahullah (d.150 AH) that another legitimate opinion in the Ḥanafī school of Fiqh (that was also a narration from Imām Abū Ḥanīfah Raḥimahullah (d.150 AH) himself) was adopted. It had nothing to do with undermining the rights of women.

 

3-    The consensus related on the issue of the impermissibility of women leading congregational prayer has been related by the early scholars as well as we have elaborated above

 

Concluding Remarks 

 

Although Dr. Brown has in this chapter tried to defend Islām from the attacks of the atheists and secularists, by choosing rare opinions in Sharī’ah, he has done more harm than good. This is because in order to appease the fickle-minded secularists, he has opposed a consensus of the scholars of Islām.

 

It is evident to anyone who has read the chapter in question that even before writing the chapter, Dr. Brown had a predetermined opinion that he wanted to validate. He then went to great lengths in asserting and defending his predetermined opinion, even ignoring the legitimate criticism of the narration he has used as evidence for his opinion.

 

Furthermore, Dr. Brown’s methodology is very questionable. When deciding the opinion he intends to base his ruling upon, he chooses the minority (supposed) opinion of three scholars, while ignoring the view of the majority. Yet when applying the laws of legal theory (Uṣūl Al Fiqh), he insists on holding onto the view of the majority. This is the insignia of those who are willing to choose any of the opinions of the scholars in order to justify their position.

 

Women have undeniably been given their due rights in the religion of Islām. We respect and value our Muslim mothers and sisters who play an immense role in the success of Islām and the Muslims. It is strange that secularists hinge their campaign of ‘feminism in Islām’ upon hopes of gaining credence to allow a woman to lead men in congregational Ṣalāh.

 

We conclude with the statement of the Prophet Ṣallallāhu ‘Alayhi Wasallam as narrated by Ḥaẓrat Abū Huraryrah Raḍiyallāhu ‘Anhu:

 

خَيْرُ صُفُوفِ الرِّجَالِ أَوَّلُهَا وَشَرُّهَا آخِرُهَا وَخَيْرُ صُفُوفِ النِّسَاءِ آخِرُهَا وَشَرُّهَا أَوَّلُهَا

Translation:

 

“The best of the rows of men [in Ṣalāh] are the first ones and the worst are the last ones, and the best of the rows of women [in Ṣalāh] are the last ones and the worst are the first ones”

 

[Ṣaḥīḥ Muslim, volume 2, page 257, (Damascus: Dārul Qalam, 2006)]

 

As a final note, this article is not intended to be an ad-hominem attack on Dr. Jonathan A.C. Brown. We wish him well. With that being said, the chapter in reference needs to be revised.

 

Due to a shortage of time, we have been able to provide only a short response. There are other points that Dr. Brown has made in this chapter that are also questionable, however, due to them being subsidiary issues and due to time constraints, we have decided to delay our response to them. Insha’Allah, we shall respond to them in due time.

 

And Allah Ta’āla Knows Best 

Mu’ādh Chati

Student Darul Iftaa
Blackburn, England, UK

Checked and Approved by,
Mufti Ebrahim Desai.



[1] Mufti Zameel Sahib’s article makes for a very interesting read as it demonstrates the weakness of this narration. Kindly note, however, that Al Walid ibn Jumay’ did not narrate from his grandfather Jumay’ at all. This was an error made by Al Mizzi in Tahdhib Al Kamal as pointed by Ibn Hajar Al Asqalani in Tahdhib Al Tahdhib. Bashar Awwad Ma’ruf has also pointed this out in his research on Tahdhib Al Kamal. And Allah knows best.

 

جميع" جد الوليد بن عبد الله الزهري عن أم ورقة في امامتها النساء وعنه حفيده الوليد على اختلاف فيه قلت هذه الترجمة من الأوهام التي لم ينبه عليها المزي بل تبع فيها صاحب الكمال وليست لجميع هذا رواية في سنن أبي داود وإنما فيه عن الوليد بن عبد الله بن جميع حدثتني جدتي عن أم ورقة وهكذا في أكثر الطرق المروية في كثير من المسانيد والأبواب ووقع في بعض طرق الطبراني في المعجم الكبير حدثني جدي والظاهر أنه تصحيف للمخالفة وقد مشى الذهبي على هذا الوهم

[Tahdhib Al Tahdhib, volume 2, page 113, (Cairo: Al Faru Al Hadithiyyah, 2009)]

[2] Note: some did hold that women were also sent as prophets, such as Imam Al Qurtubi in his Tafsir.

[3] (Al Tamimi, “Al Tabqat Al Saniyyah”, (Riyad: Dar Al Rifa’i’, 1983), v.1, pg.412.)

 

[4] While there is a difference of opinion over whether ‘لا خلاف’ shall be validated as consensus, the quote shows that early Mujtahidin also related a consensus on this issue.

[5] There is some difference of opinion over his death date, see: [Allamah Lucknawi, “Al Fawaid Al Bahiyyah”, (Karachi: Idaratul Qur’an, 1998) pg.207.]

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