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Stats: 17,469 members, 69,352 Topics, 15,454 Comments. Date: Jun 18 2019, 6:38 pm

Rufai Oladimeji
Lagos State University
English
100Level, Nigeria.
Question
We always hear the hadeeth,
“Women are lacking in reason and
religious commitment” and some
men quote it in order to annoy
women. We hope that you can
explain the meaning of the hadeeth.

Answer
Praise be to Allaah.
The Messenger of Allaah (peace and
blessings of Allaah be upon him)
said: “I have not seen any lacking in
reason and religious commitment
but (at the same time) more able to
rob the wisdom of the wise, except
one of you [women].” They said:
How are we lacking in religious
commitment and reason, O
Messenger of Allaah? He said: “Is
not the testimony of a woman like
half the testimony of a man?” They
said: Yes. He said: “That is how she
is lacking in reason. And when she
menstruates, does she not refrain
from praying and fasting?” They
said: Yes. He said: “That is how she
is lacking in religious commitment.”
So the Prophet (peace and blessings
of Allaah be upon him) explained
that her lacking in reason refers to
her weak memory, and that her
testimony must be supported by the
testimony of another woman, in
order to confirm the testimony,
because she may forget, and add
something to or take something
away from her testimony, as Allaah
says (interpretation of the
meaning):
“And get two witnesses out of your
own men. And if there are not two
men (available), then a man and
two women, such as you agree for
witnesses, so that if one of them
(two women) errs, the other can
remind her”
[al-Baqarah 2:282].
With regard to her lacking in
religious commitment, that is
because when she is menstruating
or bleeding following childbirth, she
does not pray or fast, and she does
not make up the missed prayers, so
this is lacking in religious
commitment. But this lacking is not
something for which she is called to
account or blamed, rather it is
something that happens by the will
of Allaah; for He is the One Who has
prescribed that out of kindness
towards her and so as to make
things easier for her, because if she
were to fast during menses and
nifaas, that would harm her. By His
mercy Allaah has prescribed that
she should not fast at the time of
menses and nifaas, and she should
make it up after that.
With regard to prayer, at the time
of menses she is unable to purify
herself, so by His mercy Allaah has
prescribed that she should not pray,
and the same applies to nifaas, and
He has not prescribed that she
should make it up, because making
it up would be very difficult, as
prayers are offered five times a day,
and menses may last for several
days, seven or eight or more, and
nifaas may last as long as forty
days. So by His mercy and kindness
towards her, Allaah has waived the
duty of offering and making up
prayers.

This does not mean that her reason
is lacking entirely, or that her
religious commitment is lacking
entirely, rather the Messenger
(peace and blessings of Allaah be
upon him) explained that the lack in
her reasoning has to do with what
may happen of her testimony not
being accurate, and the lack in her
religious commitment has to do
with what may happen of her
missing prayers and fasts at the
time of menses and nifaas. But
that does not imply that she is less
than a man in everything, or that a
man is better than her in
everything.
Yes, the male gender is superior to
the female gender in general, for
many reasons, as Allaah says
(interpretation of the meaning):
“Men are the protectors and
maintainers of women, because
Allaah has made one of them to
excel the other, and because they
spend (to support them) from their
means”
[al-Nisa’ 4:34].

But a woman may sometimes
surpass a man in many things. How
often has a woman surpassed men
in her reason, religious commitment
and memory. What is narrated from
the Prophet (peace and blessings of
Allaah be upon him) with regard to
the female gender being inferior to
the male gender in reason and
religious commitment is from this
point of view, which the Prophet
(peace and blessings of Allaah be
upon him) explained.
A woman may do a great deal of
righteous deeds and thus surpass
many men in her righteous deeds,
fear of Allaah and status in the
Hereafter. She may have a great
deal of interest in some matters
and thus able to give proper
testimony, better than that of
some men in some issues in which
she has an interest. She may strive
in memorization and understanding
these issues, thus becoming a
reference point with regard to
Islamic history and many other
things. This is clear to anyone who
studies the state of women at the
time of the Messenger of Allaah
(peace and blessings of Allaah be
upon him) and after that.

Thus it is clear that this lack does
not mean that women cannot be
relied on in narration (of hadeeth
etc) or in giving testimony, if it is
supported by another woman. It
also does not mean that she does
not fear Allaah or that she cannot
be among the best of Allaah’s slave
and the best of the female slaves of
Allaah, if she adheres strictly to
Islam. Although fasting is waived
for her at the time of menses and
nifaas, she has to make it up, and
even prayer is waived in her case,
but she does not have to make it
up. This does not imply that she is
lacking in all things when it comes
to fearing Allaah, obeying His
commands and becoming well-
versed in matters that are of
interest to her. It is a lack that is
specific to reason and religious
commitment, in the way that the
Prophet (peace and blessings of
Allaah be upon him) explained. So
the believer should not accuse her
of being lacking in all things, or of
being weak in religious commitment
in all aspects, rather it is a specific
type of lacking that has to do with
her religious commitment and
reason, which has to do with
accuracy of testimony and so on. So
she should be treated fairly and the
words of the Prophet (peace and
blessings of Allaah be upon him)
should be interpreted in the best
possible manner. And Allaah knows
best.
Shaykh ‘Abd al-‘Azeez ibn Baaz (may
Allaah have mercy on him)

islamqa.info/en/answers/111867/meaning-of-the-lack-in-reason-and-religious-commitment-in-women

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