Anyway going back to the topic. Mukhannathun in arabic means-"effeminate ones", "men who resemble women", singular mukhannath) is classical Arabic for people we would now call transgendered, or male-to-female transsexuals. Various "mukhannathun" appear in several hadith. In one hadith the Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) protects a mukhannath from an unruly mob. It can be said that they were and are Muslim transsexuals accepted as they are "within the boundaries of Medina and Makkah". Outside of the religious text they are strongly associated with music and entertainment.
Reports of Mukhannathun from the Qur'an, Hadith and Sunnah
There are many references to these people both direct and indirect in the Qur'an, Hadith and Sunnah. In the Qur'an:
The Quran Sura 24 verse 31 (as translated by Shakir): And say to the believing women that they cast down their looks and guard their private parts and do not display their ornaments except what appears thereof, and let them wear their head-coverings over their bosoms, and not display their ornaments except to their husbands or their fathers, or the fathers of their husbands, or their sons, or the sons of their husbands, or their brothers, or their brothers' sons, or their sisters' sons, or their women, or those whom their right hands possess, or the male servants not having need (of women), or the children who have not attained knowledge of what is hidden of women; and let them not strike their feet so that what they hide of their ornaments may be known; and turn to Allah all of you, O believers! so that you may be successful.
Two reliable hadith are:
Sunan Abu-Dawud, Book 41, Number 4910: Narrated Abu Hurayrah (RA): A mukhannath who had dyed his hands and feet with henna was brought to the Prophet (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam). He asked: What is the matter with this man? He was told: Apostle of Allah! he affects women's get-up. So he ordered regarding him and he was banished to an-Naqi'. The people said: Apostle of Allah! should we not kill him? He said: I have been prohibited from killing people who pray. Abu Usamah said: Naqi' is a region near Medina and not a Baqi (in other words not referring to Jannat al-Baqi cemetery. Indicating they were not punished.)'
Sunan Abu-Dawud, Book 32, Number 4095: Narrated Aisha, Ummul Mu'minin:
A mukhannath (eunuch) used to enter upon the wives of Prophet (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam). They (the people) counted him among those who were free of physical needs. One day the Prophet (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) entered upon us when he was with one of his wives, and was describing the qualities of a woman, saying: When she comes forward, she comes forward with four (folds in her stomach), and when she goes backward, she goes backward with eight (folds in her stomach). The Prophet (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said: Do I not see that this (man) knows what here lies. Then they (the wives) observed veil from him.
According to the Scholar and hadith collector An-Nawawi (RA):
A mukhannath is the one ("male") who carries in his movements, in his appearance and in his language the characteristics of a woman. There are two types; the first is the one in whom these characteristics are innate, he did not put them on by himself, and therein is no guilt, no blame and no shame, as long as he does not perform any (illicit) act or exploit it for money (prostitution etc.). The second type acts like a woman out of immoral purposes and he is the sinner and blameworthy.
Furthermore there is the observation of Ibn Abd Al-Barr who was a contemporary of An-Nawawi:
The mukhannath is not only the one who is known to be promiscuous. The mukhannath is (also?) the one who looks so much like a woman physically that he resembles women in his softness, speech, appearance, accent and thinking. If he is like this, he would have no desire for women and he would not notice anything about them. This is one of those who have no interest in women who were permitted to enter upon women. "
The Mukhannathun were given a high status in the times of the Prophet (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) as being "guardians of sacred boundaries" even gave them the privilege to guard not only the "harem" of women, but also the most sacred "harem" in Makkah and the one in Madinah. From the 12th century on it is reported that they were the dignified guardians of the grave of the noble Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam), a custom that held on until the end of the Ottoman rule over the two sacred cities.
Sadly the high place given to the mukhannathun in Muslim society did not survive the colonial times. It was the beloved Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) who first gave such a high position of authority to the Mukhannathun but when Ottoman rule ended then that is when Islams rule ended.
When the kufaar regimes moved in the high position of the Mukhannathun was over. So it is Islam which gave the Mukhannathun such a high position. Afterwards ignorance spread and unfortunatley we are in a state of ignorance today about many issues and matters.
May Allah open our eyes and make us the best towards others. Ameen
And Allah knows best in all matters