Can women attend Eid prayers?

Fatwa ID: 02857

Answered by:  Ustadh Moinul Abu Hamza​

Question:

Assalamu Alaikum Wa Rahmatullah

A friend of mine has quoted the below Hadith saying that women should attend the Eid Prayers. Moreover, he says that going to markets isn't a fitnah for the women but attending Eid Prayers is a fitnah. He says that those who are successful in stopping women from going to markets then you should stop your women from attending Eid Prayers.

 

Hadith No: 96

Narrated/Authority of Aiyub

Hafsa bint Sirin said, "On Eid, we used to forbid our girls to go out for Eid prayer. A lady came and stayed at the palace of Bani Khalaf and I went to her. She said, 'The husband of my sister took part in twelve holy battles along with the Prophet and my sister was with her husband in six of them. My sister said that they used to nurse the sick and treat the wounded. Once she asked, 'O Allah's Apostle! If a woman has no veil, is there any harm if she does not come out (on Eid day)?'

The Prophet said, 'Her companion should let her share her veil with her, and the women should participate in the good deeds and in the religious gatherings of the believers.' " Hafsa added, "When Um-'Atiya came, I went to her and asked her, 'Did you hear anything about so-and-so?' Um-Atiya said, 'Yes, let my father be sacrificed for the Prophet (p.b.u.h). (And whenever she mentioned the name of the Prophet she always used to say, 'Let my father be' sacrificed for him).

He said, 'Virgin mature girls staying often screened (or said, 'Mature girls and virgins staying often screened – Aiyub is not sure as which was right) and menstruating women should come out (on the Eid day). But the menstruating women should keep away from the Musalla. And all the women should participate in the good deeds and in the religious gatherings of the believers'." Hafsa said, "On that, I said to Um-Atiya, 'Also those who are menstruating?' " Um-Atiya replied, "Yes. Do they not present themselves at 'Arafat and elsewhere?"

Sahih Bukhari

 

بِسْمِ اللهِ الرَّحْمنِ الرَّحِيْم

             

In the name of ALLAH the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.

In the hadith above it mentions that Hafsa bint Sirin said: "On Eid, we used to forbid our girls to go out for Eid prayer". This Hadith is relating to 'jawariy' as stated in the hadith quoted in your question which refers to prepubescent girls, not women. This is why the exact opposite conclusion of your friend is mentioned in another hadith "We were ordered to go out (for `Id) and also to take along with us the menstruating women, mature girls and virgins staying in seclusion.."(1) This would be a specific response to the question.

In general, however, there are also numerous hadith on the matter that relates to women going to the mosque outside of Eid, and so by greater reason, the special occasion of Eid prayers would be even more encouraged unless there was a specific text saying otherwise. Nevertheless, here are a few shreds of evidence to furnish your understanding on the matter.

By way of one example, Ā'isha, the wife of the Prophet (), said,

"Allāh's Apostle used to offer the fajr [morning] prayer when it was still dark and the believing women used to return [after finishing their prayer] and nobody could recognise them owing to the darkness, or they could not recognise one another".

The Prophet () is also narrated to have instructed,

"Do not forbid the female servants of Allah from the masājid of Allah." (Muslim, 886)

"If one of your women asks permission from you [to go to the masjid] then do not prevent them" (Bukhari, Vol I, Hadith 832)

"Do not prevent your women from visiting the mosques; but their houses are better for them (for praying)." (Sunan Abu Dawud, No. 567) (See also No. 570)

 

And Allah (swt) knows best.

 

Written by Ustadh Moinul Abu Hamza

Checked and approved Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah

Darul Ifta Birmingham

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