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nousername
07-30-2010, 04:35 AM
It is 5:50 in the morning, and dark shadows scurry through narrow alleys to the mosque, as the call to prayer echoes from a minaret in Kaifeng. This city in central China's Henan province has an Islamic enclave, where Muslims have lived for more than 1,000 years.
In an alleyway called Wangjia hutong, women go to their own mosque, where Yao Baoxia leads prayers. For 14 years, Yao has been a female imam, or ahong as they are called here, a word derived from Persian.
As she leads the service, Yao stands alongside the other women, not in front of them as a male imam would. But she says her role is the same as a male imam.
"The status is the same," Yao says confidently. "Men and women are equal here, maybe because we are a socialist country."
Enlarge Ariana Lindquist for NPR Yao Baoxia is a female ahong, or imam, at Wangjia Hutong Women's Mosque in Kaifeng, in central China. She sits alongside believers during prayers, not in front of them like male imams. She believes male and female imams are equal in their role as teachers and leaders of prayers.


Ariana Lindquist for NPR Yao Baoxia is a female ahong, or imam, at Wangjia Hutong Women's Mosque in Kaifeng, in central China. She sits alongside believers during prayers, not in front of them like male imams. She believes male and female imams are equal in their role as teachers and leaders of prayers.


China has an estimated 21 million Muslims, who have developed their own set of Islamic practices with Chinese characteristics. The biggest difference is the development of independent women's mosques with female imams, something scholars who have researched the issue say is unique to China.
Yao studied to become an imam for four years, after being laid off from her job as a factory worker. First she studied under a female imam, then with a male imam alongside male students.
Her main role is as a teacher, she says.
"When people come to pray, they don't know how to chant the Quran, so my job is teaching people about Islam, helping them to study one line at a time and leading the prayers," she says.
Mosques Began As Quranic Schools
The modest courtyard of Wangjia Hutong Women's Mosque contains within it the entire history of China's mosques for females. It's the oldest surviving women's mosque in China, with one gray plaque high up on a wall dating back to 1820.
Like other women's mosques, it began as a Quranic school for girls. These sprang up in the late 17th century in central China, including Shanxi and Shandong provinces. They morphed into women's mosques about 100 years ago, starting in Henan province.
Remembering her own childhood, 83-year-old Tang Guiying says even then the women's mosque was the only place a girl could receive education.
Enlarge Ariana Lindquist for NPR Women at the Wangjia mosque work early in the morning in the kitchen. The mosques began as Quranic schools for girls in the late 17th century. They were the only places girls could receive an education; now, they also serve as community centers.


Ariana Lindquist for NPR Women at the Wangjia mosque work early in the morning in the kitchen. The mosques began as Quranic schools for girls in the late 17th century. They were the only places girls could receive an education; now, they also serve as community centers.


"I didn't go to school when I was small," she chuckles. "We were all too poor; none of us girls studied. But I came here to play and study. The old imam was very, very old — she was 80-something, and she had bound feet."
Tang is sitting in the mosque's washroom as she talks. This is where women conduct ritual ablutions before prayer. This space — and the mosque itself — doubles as a social center for these women, the heart of a community.
In Kaifeng, there are 16 women's mosques, one-third the number of mosques for males.
A Unique Chinese Tradition
Shui Jingjun, of the Henan Academy of Social Sciences and co-author of a book on the phenomenon, says that so far there are no women's mosques in other countries. In most of the Muslim world, women pray behind a partition or in a separate room, but in the same mosque as men.
Shui points out that the women's mosques in China are administered independently, by women for women, in addition to being legally separate entities in some cases.
"After reform and opening up [in 1979], some female mosques registered independently, which shows the equality of male and female mosques," she explains.
Controversy still rages in the Muslim world about whether women can be imams. In 2006, Morocco became the first country in the Arab world to officially sanction the training of female religious leaders.

Credit: Adrienne Wollman/NPR



China is the only country to have such a long history of female imams. However, there are things that, according to the customary practices of Chinese Muslims, female imams can't do.
They can't, for instance, lead funeral rituals or wash male corpses.
Forty miles away in the provincial capital of Zhengzhou, white-sashed mourners wail as they process through the streets carrying the coffin from a mosque. No female imams are participating.
Opposition Still Exists To Women's Roles
In central China, most Muslims support the female mosques, but there is some resistance closer to China's border with Pakistan and Afghanistan, closer to the harder-line Wahhabi and Salafi influences.
"Historically in northwestern China, there were no female mosques," says Shui, the researcher. "There was resistance because people thought that building female mosques was against the rules of religion. But in central China and most provinces, people think it's a good innovation for Islam."
In the past decade, some women's mosques have been established in northwest China. The phenomenon appears to be spreading, helped politically by the Islamic Association of China, a state-controlled body that regulates Islam and issues licenses to practice to male and female imams alike.
Enlarge Ariana Lindquist for NPR Women pray at a the Wangjia mosque in Kaifeng. There are 16 women's mosques in the city, one-third the number of mosques serving male Muslims.


Ariana Lindquist for NPR Women pray at a the Wangjia mosque in Kaifeng. There are 16 women's mosques in the city, one-third the number of mosques serving male Muslims.


This is part of the anomaly that is religion in China — the atheist Chinese authorities are endorsing a practice some Muslims find unacceptable.
While there is broad support among Kaifeng's Muslims for female mosques and imams, there is also some opposition.
"The education of Islamic women is a very important job," says Guo Baoguang, of the Islamic Association of Kaifeng. But he admits that he has been criticized for organizing religious education forums for Muslim men and women to take part in together.
"There were some criticisms that women ought to be in the home, and ought not take part in social activities. I think these criticisms are too conservative, and don't account of the importance of women's education in Islam," he says.
Guo believes that when it comes to female imams, China is leading the way.
"Given the fast development of China's economy, and as its political status rises, I think Chinese Islam will become more important in the Islamic world," Guo says. "The developments Chinese Islam has made, like the role played by Chinese women, will be more accepted by Muslims elsewhere in the world."
Enlarge Ariana Lindquist for NPR For Bai Yanlian becoming a female imam took seven years of study, including three years of Arabic-language training. She then had to take an exam to get a license from the state.


Ariana Lindquist for NPR For Bai Yanlian becoming a female imam took seven years of study, including three years of Arabic-language training. She then had to take an exam to get a license from the state.


Greatest Challenge Is Economic
In the women's mosques, most of the faithful are elderly. Young women with families often don't have the time to worship, especially given the lengthy purification rituals several times a day.
Third-generation imam Sun Chengying, who has been practicing for 21 years, worries about the future.
"I haven't had any students since 1996," she says, shaking her head. "Women don't want be imams anymore, because the salaries in the mosques are too low. No one is willing to do it."
Female imams sometimes earn as little as $40 a month, one-third of what can be earned in other jobs. Younger women need to earn more to support their families.
And so it appears the future of female imams in China is threatened — not by the state, not by resistance from inside Islam, but by the forces of market economics.
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nousername
07-30-2010, 04:37 AM
MashaALLAh it would be so amazing to go to an all woman mosque! No more being stuffed in the back in the tiny women section of the mosque! I think it's a great thing
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Muslim Woman
07-30-2010, 05:47 AM
Salaam Alaykum

not sure about women Imam concept . During the time of the Prophet pbuh , was there any women only mosque or woman Imam ?
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nousername
07-30-2010, 06:17 AM
They're not doing anything that a woman can't do- such as they don't wash male bodies for funerals or lead the funeral prayers for example. and when they pray in the mosque, the female imam prays alongside the other women, not in the front. If their is no men behind her or anything like that, what is wrong with it? It's better than going to a mosque and to be stuffed like sardines in the back, esp. during Ramadan. And it also means no freemixing at all.
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Muslim Woman
07-30-2010, 06:22 AM
Salaam

Mothers of the Beleivers were Imams at any women only mosque ? Muslim women have so many problems in daily lives. Instead of solving those problems , I think it's unnecessary to work for creating a new concept.

Also , for women , reward is same for offering salat at res and mosque.

And Allah Knows Best.
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nousername
07-30-2010, 06:32 AM
A Woman Leading Other Women in Prayer

Regarding a woman leading ONLY women in Prayer, there are a number of hadiths such as these:

The hadith of `A’ishah and Umm Salamah (may Allah be pleased with them). `Abdur-Raziq (5086), Ad-Daraqutni (1/404) and Al-Bayhaqi (3/131) reported from the narration of Abu Hazim Maysarah ibn Habib from Ra’itah Al-Hanafiyyah from `A’ishah that she led women in Prayer and stood among them in an obligatory Prayer. Moreover, Ibn Abi Shaybah (2/89) reported from the chain of narrators of Ibn Abi Layla from `Ata’ that `A’ishah used to say the Adhan, the Iqamah, and lead women in Prayer while standing among them in the same row. Al-Hakim also reported the same hadith from the chain of narrators of Layth Ibn Abi Sulaim from `Ata’, and the wording of the hadith mentioned here is Al-Hakim’s.

Furthermore, Ash-Shafi`i (315), Ibn Abi Shaybah (88/2) and `Abdur-Raziq (5082) reported from two chains of narrators that report the narration of `Ammar Ad-Dahni in which he stated that a woman from his tribe named Hujayrah narrated that Umm Salamh used to lead women in Prayer while standing among them in the same row.

The wording of `Abdur-Raziq for the same hadith is as follows: “Umm Salamah led us (women) in the `Asr Prayer and stood among us (in the same row).”

In addition, Al-Hafiz said in Ad-Dirayah (1/169), “Muhammad ibn Al-Husain reported from the narration of Ibrahim An-Nakh`i that `A’ishah used to lead women in Prayer during the month of Ramadan while standing among them in the same row.

Further, `Abdur-Raziq reported (5083) from the narration of Ibrahim ibn Muhammad from Dawud ibn Al-Husain from `Ikrimah from Ibn `Abbas that the latter said, “A woman can lead women in Prayer while standing between them.”

Would that our sisters who are so enthusiastic about women’s rights revive this act of Sunnah—a woman leading other women in Prayer—instead of innovating this rejected novelty: a woman leading men in Prayer.

The following is stated in Al-Mughni:

The narrations differ as to whether it is desirable for a woman to lead other women in congregational Prayer. It is reported that the matter is desirable, as the following scholars said that a woman can lead other women in Prayer: `A’ishah, Umm Salamah, `Ata’, Athawri, Al-Awza`i, Ash-Shafi`i, Ishaq, and Abu Thawr. Furthermore, it is narrated that Ahmad ibn Hanbal (may Allah be merciful to him) said that the matter is desirable. However, ahul ar-ra’i (scholars who mostly depend on reason in deducing rulings) regard the matter as undesirable, but if such congregational Prayer is done, it will be sufficient for the women who perform it. As for Ash-Sha`bi, An-Nakh`i and Qatadah, they say that women can perform Prayer this way in supererogatory Prayers but not in obligatory ones.

Read more: http://www.islamonline.net/servlet/S...#ixzz0v92D4Dn7
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TrueStranger
07-30-2010, 06:49 AM
If anything this is something beautiful. As women are actually getting educated in Islam and the Qu'ran. I'm proud of my Muslim Sisters. There is nothing wrong with having a women only mosque where women could educated themselves about Islam.

May Allah guide them and protect them.

If anything, we should be worried about those Muslims that are burning down girl's schools.
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Muslimeen
07-30-2010, 08:47 AM
Originally Posted by TrueStranger
If anything, we should be worried about those Muslims that are burning down girl's schools.
Like who? I don't know of any.
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Muslim Woman
07-30-2010, 12:37 PM
Salaam

Originally Posted by nousername
....`A’ishah used to say the Adhan,

tha'ts interesting , did not know about that . She gave Athan inside the mosque ?
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Rhubarb Tart
07-30-2010, 01:06 PM
Mashallah!

I dont see anything wrong with this! Only women, so what? Honestly I dont see anything wrong with this as women are allowed to lead prayers for women only.

There is a mosque in somalia near my family home and it is men only. That was the only mosque I saw that was male only mosque in the country though.
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Maryan0
07-30-2010, 01:36 PM
Originally Posted by nousername
They're not doing anything that a woman can't do- such as they don't wash male bodies for funerals or lead the funeral prayers for example. and when they pray in the mosque, the female imam prays alongside the other women, not in the front. If their is no men behind her or anything like that, what is wrong with it? It's better than going to a mosque and to be stuffed like sardines in the back, esp. during Ramadan. And it also means no freemixing at all.
I agree with both points. This is a very nice idea.
Salam
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Danah
07-30-2010, 05:18 PM
Interesting!! MashaAllah very nice to be in place like this without men around.


Women leading prayers

Can women pray in congregation ( Jamaah ) with a woman performing as Imaam ?

Praise be to Allaah.

It is not prescribed for women to recite the adhaan and iqaamah as it is for men. If a woman does recite the adhaan and iqaamah, it may be one of the three following scenarios:

1 – She recites the adhaan and iqaamah for a group of men only, or for a mixed group of men and women. This is not prescribed in Islam and her adhaan and iqaamah for a group of men do not count

2 – She recites them for a group of women only.

3 – Or she recites them for herself when she is alone.

It is permissible for her to recite the adhaan for a group of women or for herself, but it is not like the case with men. For men it is more emphatically required, whereas for women, if they give the adhaan it is permissible, and if they do not, it is also permissible. If a woman does recite the adhaan, she must keep her voice low and make it just loud enough for her companions to hear.

If a woman says the iqaamah for herself or for a group of women, that is better and is closer to what is mustahabb, but if she does not do that, the prayer is still valid.

With regard to a woman leading the prayers and acting as an imaam, one of the two following scenarios may apply:

1 – A woman leading men, or a mixed group of men and women. It is not correct for a woman to lead men in prayers at all, regardless of whether it is a fard (obligatory) prayer or a naafil (supererogatory) prayer.

2 – A woman leading women in prayer. It is mustahabb for women to pray together (in jamaa’ah) when they get together in a place. One of them should lead the others, but she should stand with them in the middle of the row. It is permissible and correct for a woman to lead other women in prayer.

From Wilaayat al-Mar’ah fi’l-Fiqh al-Islami




Source: http://www.islam-qa.com/en/ref/14247
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TrueStranger
07-30-2010, 05:19 PM
Originally Posted by Muslimeen
Like who? I don't know of any.

Like the Taliban.

In 2009, the Taliban destroyed 10 girls' schools in the tribal district of Dir in Northwest Pakistan - schools which Maryam Bibi's charity, Khwendo Kor, had helped to build.

http://english.aljazeera.net/program...639673345.html
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Insaanah
07-30-2010, 05:32 PM
:sl:

There is proof from the ahadeeth that women can lead other women in prayer, and I don't feel that's the issue here.

The issue is of a mosque that is for one sex only. I know there are some mosques that don't have facilities or room for women, however from an Islamic viewpoint, even though it's better for women to pray at home, mosques are still for everyone, regardless of gender.

I wonder what Rasoolullah :saws: would have thought of this.....
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Rhubarb Tart
07-30-2010, 07:54 PM
I know mosque where it only for men. I dont see anyone complaining about that...

or complaining about small rooms given to sister in mosque, so small that most women cant pray in the mosque in Eid.... again I dont see anyone complaining about that... The idea of mosque is for everyone doesnt really reflect real life..

I dont see anything wrong with this, there is plenty of mosque for the brothers. This idea of women mosque would be good for reverts, they would have a proper place to go to not some small room in the corner. The mosque is sometimes the only place to learn their deen for some sisters.

There isnt anything in Islam that say we arent allowed to do this... why make it haraam?
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~Raindrop~
07-30-2010, 07:57 PM
Originally Posted by Insane Insaan
.

I wonder what Rasoolullah :saws: would have thought of this.....
That was the first thought that came to my mind, too. It's worrying, to say the least.
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marwen
07-30-2010, 08:00 PM
I dunno if it's correct or not to have a women only mosque. Probably it's ok, but I dunno it seems a little bit weired. Besides, we never seen this before in islam so I smell some little bida'ah here. But my question is why don't they pray in ordinary mosques ? is there a reason to pray without men ? (i'll read the op again, may be I missed the answer)
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Rhubarb Tart
07-30-2010, 08:03 PM
What if this was called Islamic eduaction centre maybe that would make some of you happy?
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Insaanah
07-30-2010, 08:09 PM
Originally Posted by sweet106
I know mosque where it only for men. I dont see anyone complaining about that...
As I said in my post, there are mosques that don't have enough room (sometimes no room) or facilities for women.

Our example is not to look at the wrong things done now, and then emulate it. We look at the sunnah. At no stage was there a men only mosque or women only mosque. Mosques are for Muslims, with no distinction or discrimination, in race, sex, age or anything else.

If some mosques have no room and women can't go, nobody is saying that's good. But from the sunnah we are not suppose to respond to a wrong by doing another wrong.

Originally Posted by sweet106
This idea of women mosque would good for reverts, they would have a proper place to go to not some small room in the corner. The mosque is sometimes the only place to learn their deen for some sisters.
Nothing is stopping them going to someone's house, or the house of the most knowledgable one in the community.

Originally Posted by sweet106
I dont see anything wrong with this
Dscriminating against which Muslim can or can't go into a mosque is. And before we get the whole "men have plenty of room is mosques" argument, remember, men are commanded to go to the mosque, and although men are not supposed to stop their womenfolk going to the mosque, from the sunnah it is preferable for a woman to pray at home.

Again, I wonder what Rasoolullah :saws: would have thought of this....
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Rhubarb Tart
07-30-2010, 08:13 PM
Originally Posted by Insane Insaan

As I said in my post, there are mosques that don't have enough room (sometimes no room) or facilities for women.

Our example is not to look at the wrong things done now, and then emulate it. We look at the sunnah. At no stage was there a men only mosque or women only mosque. Mosques are for Muslims, with no distinction or discrimination, in race, sex, age or anything else.

If some mosques have no room and women can't go, nobody is saying that's good. But from the sunnah we are not suppose to respond to a wrong by doing another wrong.



Nothing is stopping them going to someone's house, or the house of the most knowledgable one in the community.



Dscriminating against which Muslim can or can't go into a mosque is. And before we get the whole "men have plenty of room is mosques" argument, remember, men are commanded to go to the mosque, and although men are not supposed to stop their womenfolk going to the mosque, from the sunnah it is preferable for a woman to pray at home.

Again, I wonder what Rasoolullah :saws: would have thought of this....
All you have written is said over and over again in the UK. Is a muslim willing to help out a sister in need, in my experince no!

You and others like you make this deen seem so oppressive. the space is excuse is getting old. You may prefer to stay at home, mashallah good for you. I am sure as hell wont. I prefer the mosque, with other womenfork and islamic resource at my reach.
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Rhubarb Tart
07-30-2010, 08:13 PM
Make Way for the Women!
Why Your Mosque Should be Woman Friendly, by American convert, Saraji Umm Zaid.

"Do not stop the maid servants of Allah from going to the mosques of Allah." (Muwatta of Imam Malik)

"When the wife of one of you asks about going to the mosque, do not stop her." (Bukhari)

I recently took a trip with my family to the state of Colorado, and I was looking forward to visiting a different Muslim community. To my great dismay, when we went to an (unnamed) Colorado city to pray Jumu'ah in their masjid [mosque], we were told that there were no women in that masjid, and that I would be unable to pray there. With my children and (non Muslim) mother in tow, I went off to a park while my husband prayed. As a Muslima, I felt humiliated and angry, and I was embarrassed for the Ummah that my non Muslim mother should have to see Muslims barring me from Bait Ullah [house of God] for no reason other than my gender. Nothing like reinforcing negative stereotypes, is there? Later, the brothers there told my husband that it was nothing against me, there just "wasn't room" for women in this masjid.

A few years ago, I visited a masjid in New York, intending to make 'asr prayer while I was out shopping for things for my new home with my daughter and a friend. Instead, the sister and I were greeted at the door by a very angry teenager, who railed at us to return to our homes, that women have no place in the masjid, and that we were a fitna [a trial, calamity or affliction] upon the brothers who were there (all three of them). Mind you, we were a group consisting of a small child, a sister in hijab and jilbab [a loose-fitting garment covering the entire body], and a sister in niqab [face veil]. Subhan'Allah, if a small child and two sisters in hijab are a fitna upon these men, then whatever do they do as they walk around New York City and encounter women who cover nothing more than what they are legally required to cover (meaning the genitalia)? As we were leaving, one of the brothers caught up to us, and apologized for the incident. Then he said, "It's not that women aren't allowed, just that there isn't any room for you in this masjid." I fail to see how a two bedroom apartment with a living room converted into a masjid where there are only three brothers present at the time doesn't "have enough room."

I don't know. Maybe it's just me, but the "we don't have room for you" excuse is getting old. I visited a masjid in Monterey, California that was about the size of my living room. If any masjid had a valid reason to use this excuse was this place. However, the brothers here had the foresight to curtain off a corner in the back for women. If no women showed up, they would keep the curtain drawn to the side, and there would be more room for men. If a sister or two did show up, they would close the curtain, and the men would have to make do with the space they had left.

Yes, some spaces for masajid are very small, but to use that as an excuse to bar women from praying there is unacceptable. Proof of that is offered in the example of the Monterey masjid. Because the Prophet, aleyhi salatu wa salaam, specifically forbad keeping women from the masjid, no one is going to come right out and say that they bar women from entering. "We don't have room" becomes code for "We don't want you here. Go home." If people were really interested in keeping with the Sunnah of ar Rasul, aleyhi salatu wa salaam, they should make sure that their masjid doesn't aid them in violating the Prophet's command, aleyhi salatu wa salaam.

People in these communities who speak out against this injustice are often labeled as "troublemakers." When I wrote a letter to that NY masjid, giving reasons from Qur'an, Sunnah, and the writings of our esteemed scholars as to why it is haram to block women from the masjid, I was labeled a "radical feminist." Subhan'Allah. Is anti-feminism so ingrained in our community now that any speech for the rights of women should be dismissed, even when that speech comes directly from Allah and His Messenger?

Besides the inconvenience such masajid pose to women who are traveling, or working, or in some other way unable to be at home or another masjid to pray, these masajid also detract from the community as a whole. There is a void in that community. An multitude of viewpoints, ideas, and energy have been eliminated. More than 50% of the local community is invisible and excluded. I say more than 50%, because it is almost always the case that when a masjid excludes women, it automatically excludes children as well. Is this the face of our da'wa? A face that is exclusively male? How can we tell non Muslim women that Islam is a sheltering peace for them if we show them a community wherein women are virtually invisible?

It was not the face of the da'wa of the Sahaba, and it was not the Sunnah of the Prophet, aleyhi salatu wa salaam, to exclude women. Not from the masjid, and not from the community as a whole. Much is made of the hadith wherein the Prophet, sallalahu aleyhi wa salaam, told a woman that prayer in her home is better than prayer in the masjid. (Ustadh Abdullah Adhami has taught this hadith from a common sense, traditional point of view, and discusses misinterpretations that people have made of this hadith to justify banning women from the masajid, and you can hear this on his tape set "Ibadah of Women," from Ihya Productions.) The point that I am making here is that while the Prophet, aleyhi salatu wa salaam, told the woman that the prayer in her home is better for her, he did not forbid her from coming to the masjid at all. In fact, we know that the contrary is true, that he forbad men from preventing women to go to the masjid, as seen in the ahadith cited at the top of the page. If you are in a masjid that does not have a space for women, you are preventing them from entering this masjid. If you stand by while another brother tells a woman to go home, you are preventing her from entering the masjid. Do you really want to take that position?

If your masjid space truly is very small, there are very easy ways for you to make it availalble to women who need to pray there, while opening up the entire space for the men when no women are present. Many home improvement and home decorating stores sell decorative screens (like the rice paper ones seen in Japan), for a relatively low price. They fold up and are easy to store when not in use. Office supply stores sell cubicle walls with wheels. They also fold up for easy storage. If your masjid doesn't have enough of a budget for these items, take up a special collection. In the meantime, you can install an extended curtain rod across the intended space for women and put up floor length curtains. You can use a table or chairs to mark the space reserved for women. Or you can do as masajid have done for hundreds of years, and just designate a space behind the men as women's space, without hijab (barriers) or walls. However, be aware that some women (and men) might not be comfortable with this style, since they may need to breastfeed an infant or adjust their coverings in the course of a Jumu'ah khutba.

If you have been blessed by Allah subhannahu wa ta'ala to have a larger amount of space for your masjid, then do the right thing by your sisters. Make sure that the space reserved for them is adequate. Make sure the floor is clean. Make sure it is heated in the winter, and has air in the summer. Make sure the roof doesn't leak when it rains. Are there shoe racks and coat hangers? Make sure copies of the Qur'an are on hand for them to read. Make sure that the women's bathroom has hooks for their hijabs (when they are making wudhu), paper towels for them to dry with, slippers to wear, and soap to wash with. Make sure the bathroom is clean. If you have the room, you should add a changing table. It is a fact of life that where there are Muslim women, there are bound to be Muslim children, and the smallest of those children will need to have their diapers changed. Should the mother change it on the musallah floor, or on a wet, dirty, bathroom floor?

When you ensure that women are included in the masjid, you are ensuring that the entire community has access to the teachings of Islam. You are showing non Muslims that Islam does not stand for the exclusion of women and children, that Islam is not a "man's religion." You are showing non Muslims that a woman can be modest, can be religious, and can still participate in community life. You are showing the next generation of Muslims that cultural ideas about excluding women and keeping them in the home are not from Islam. And you are following the teachings and example of our beloved Prophet, aleyhi salatu wa salaam. It is time for us to start undoing the damage done to our communities by pre-Islamic cultural ideas about "women's places." It is time for us to erase the misconceptions and misunderstandings of the diyn (religion) that many still cling to. The only way that we can be sure that the next generation understands Islam as it was truly taught by the Prophet, sallalahu aleyhi wa salaam, is to be sure that women and children are fully included in the masjid.
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Insaanah
07-30-2010, 08:14 PM
Originally Posted by sweet106
Original Quote has been edited, and reworded


I am shocked at your comment.

Please read my post, I said there is nothing stopping a woman going to the house of knowledgable women.

And I clarified in my first post that men shouldn't stop their womenfolk from going to mosques, and in both posts that it's not right for mosques to have no room for women.
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glo
07-30-2010, 08:21 PM
Originally Posted by sweet106
Make Way for the Women!
Why Your Mosque Should be Woman Friendly, by American convert, Saraji Umm Zaid.

"Do not stop the maid servants of Allah from going to the mosques of Allah." (Muwatta of Imam Malik)

"When the wife of one of you asks about going to the mosque, do not stop her." (Bukhari)
That's a very powerful article, sweet106.
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Rhubarb Tart
07-30-2010, 08:24 PM
Originally Posted by Insane Insaan

Read my post, I said there is nothing stopping a woman going to the house of knowledgable women.

And I clarified in both posts that it's not right for mosques to have no room for women.
I am sorry you dont see the sunnah that men are not allowed to stop women from going to the mosque.

If these women above called it "islamic education centre" would you be fine with it....

You dont get it, do you? I dont think the muslim community are open enough to help out another sister unless they are in a mosque including "knowledgable women".

I have to travel to another city to gain proper Islamic eduaction...

This is a result from men stopping women to enter a mosque....there would be no such thing as the above case. Good for them.
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Insaanah
07-30-2010, 08:29 PM
Originally Posted by sweet106
I am sorry you dont see the sunnah that men are not allowed to stop women from going to the mosque.

If these women above called it "islamic education centre" would you be fine with it....

You dont get it, do you? I dont think the muslim community are open enough to help out another sister unless they are in a mosque including "knowledgable women".

I have to travel to another city to gain proper Islamic eduaction...

This is a result from men stopping women to enter a mosque....there would be no such thing as the above case. Good for them.
Selective reading does wonders.

I am sorry you don't live in an open Muslim community.

I've said all I needed to say, and will withdraw from this.

Peace.
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Rhubarb Tart
07-30-2010, 08:32 PM
Originally Posted by Insane Insaan

Selective reading does wanders.

I am sorry you don't live in an open Muslim community.

I've said all I needed to say, and will withdraw from this.

Peace.
Im sorry the muslim community or members dont have similar "outrage" when it comes to men excluding women from mosque but that is fine with you because women are meant to stay at home...

You were the one using the no space excuse...

There is no real excuse if you think about it...
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Insaanah
07-30-2010, 08:36 PM
Originally Posted by sweet106
You were the one using the no space excuse...
Originally Posted by Insane Insaan
I know there are some mosques that don't have facilities or room for women, however from an Islamic viewpoint, even though it's better for women to pray at home, mosques are still for everyone, regardless of gender
As I said, selective reading does wonders.

This is my final post on the topic.

Peace.
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Rhubarb Tart
07-30-2010, 08:42 PM
Originally Posted by Insane Insaan
As I said, selective reading does wonders.

This is my final post on the topic.

Peace.
Salam

oh I read your posts, you were using the "no space excuse" as well "women meant to stay at home sunnah".


And before we get the whole "men have plenty of room is mosques" argument, remember, men are commanded to go to the mosque, and although men are not supposed to stop their womenfolk going to the mosque, from the sunnah it is preferable for a woman to pray at home.
If some mosques have no room and women can't go, nobody is saying that's good. But from the sunnah we are not suppose to respond to a wrong by doing another wrong.
Peace
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Asiyah3
07-30-2010, 08:45 PM
Originally Posted by Insane Insaan
As I said, selective reading does wonders.

This is my final post on the topic.

Peace.
Masha'Allah. May Allah bless you and reward you for you patience. I loved your posts on this topic.
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Rhubarb Tart
07-30-2010, 08:50 PM
I'm sure if these women were to call it "islamic Education centre" you would still have a probelm with it. I''m sorry to see a sister dont express similar "outrage" when mosque for men are bulit because of the excuse "women meant to stay at home".

If you really were suggesting mosque is for everyone, would not have mentioned that particular sunnah.


ameen to dua.
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Woodrow
07-30-2010, 09:14 PM
One thing we all to be aware of. With the spread of Islam, in non-Muslim areas. Unusual situations are happening. It is very probable there will be areas in which the only active Muslims are female. I do not know the solution, but there must be a method by which an all female Masjid can be available without violating what is Sunnah. It is a problem our scholars need to address.
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~Raindrop~
07-30-2010, 09:14 PM
Originally Posted by **muslimah**
Masha'Allah. May Allah bless you and reward you for you patience. I loved your posts on this topic.
Ameen thumma Ameen.
Me too. May Allah SWT grant us true love for all the Sunan of the Prophet :saws:
Reply

TrueStranger
07-30-2010, 09:34 PM
Salaam Aliakum.

I really do not see what is wrong with a woman's only Mosque. A Mosque is not only a place to Pray. It's a place where the community comes to interact and educate themselves about Islam and their social problems. And even if there was a Mosque that provides a space for both men and women, those two do not interact and they are separated by a wall usually. It is as if there are two sections inside the mosque, one for men and one for women. And we know that during the Prophet (PBUH) days that was not the norm.


Sisters could stay home and pray, but they can not educated themselves about Islam without the help of other knowledgeable sisters.


Let's not focus on small issues and focus on the bigger issues that are causing more harm to the Muslim Ummah. Let's worry about the double standards and injustices that are within the Muslim Ummah. Let's worry about educating the Muslim youth about their religion. Let's worry about protecting our Muslim brothers and sisters around the world, etc.....

As for these Women Mosques, Insha'Allah , they were all build with good intentions and at the end of the day it is the intentions that count.
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Danah
07-30-2010, 09:38 PM
Now this article from islamonline.com might clarify the issue a bit, but unfortunately its in Arabic. Its about a Indian lady (who is active in Dawah field) who built a mosque that is basically for women only to pray but she allow men later to pray there.

The article said that this is Bid'ah because there were nothing called mosques for women only on the time of the prophet. Men and Women were praying at the same mosques on the time of the prophet so this is considered as an invention.

http://www.islamonline.net/servlet/S...ah%2FSRALayout

Also this article is very good one at the same topic about Egypt where they said that they won't allow any mosques for women only. The article says that women is a part of society and she has to be involved in worshiping practices with the other parts of the society:
http://www.islamonline.net/servlet/S...=1209357663076


I am in hurry, so I hope someone else will come along and do a rough translation for the above articles.
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Rhubarb Tart
07-30-2010, 09:40 PM
I know a solution for these sisters, dont call it mosque. Just call it islamic centre for sisters or something similar. That way those that have a probelm with it can bother with something else.
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Rhubarb Tart
07-30-2010, 09:44 PM
Originally Posted by Danah
Now this article from islamonline.com might clarify the issue a bit, but unfortunately its in Arabic. Its about a Indian lady (who is active in Dawah field) who built a mosque that is basically for women only to pray but she allow men later to pray there.

The article said that this is Bid'ah because there were nothing called mosques for women only on the time of the prophet. Men and Women were praying at the same mosques on the time of the prophet so this is considered as an invention.

http://www.islamonline.net/servlet/S...ah%2FSRALayout

Also this article is very good one at the same topic about Egypt where they said that they won't allow any mosques for women only. The article says that women is a part of society and she has to be involved in worshiping practices with the other parts of the society:
http://www.islamonline.net/servlet/S...=1209357663076


I am in hurry, so I hope someone else will come along and do a rough translation for the above articles.
the page will load. It is blank.
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Danah
07-30-2010, 09:53 PM
Originally Posted by sweet106
the page will load. It is blank.
If its still blank try this or this

I hope it will work inshaAllah
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marwen
07-30-2010, 09:56 PM
Originally Posted by sweet106
I know a solution for these sisters, dont call it mosque. Just call it islamic centre for sisters or something similar. That way those that have a probelm with it can bother with something else.
I don't think the name is the problem here. I think it's how the place is used. If they used the place for other activities (islamic learning etc.) and they find themselves there in prayer time, so they pray that's fine. But if they just use the place for prayer, then it must be called a masjid/Mosque, and in this case we will have different opinions.
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Rhubarb Tart
07-30-2010, 10:00 PM
Originally Posted by marwen

I don't think the name is the problem here. I think it's how the place is used. If they used the place for other activities (islamic learning etc.) and they find themselves there in prayer time, so they pray that's fine. But if they just use the place for prayer, then it must be called a masjid/Mosque, and in this case we will have different opinions.
Reading through the OP post, they do other activities there too.
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Rabi'ya
07-30-2010, 10:30 PM
:sl:

A lovely idea and its a shame that the "advanced" western societies fail to allow women to attend mosques. Sometimes when I go out with my daughter I am forced to delay my salaah because the local masjid cannot provide a few square feet for women to pray. I mean seriously, most masjids only have a few women praying at each salaah(except Ramadan) and women tend not to attend Jumuah so the men can have their few square feet back. :(

I pray these women continue what they are doing and bring many more people to Islam.
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glo
07-31-2010, 08:20 AM
Originally Posted by ~SilverOrchid~
:sl:
A lovely idea and its a shame that the "advanced" western societies fail to allow women to attend mosques.
But it's not the "advanced" western societies which are the problem.
In fact, under the umbrella of equality, freedom of expression and religious freedom, such things probably wouldn't happen in places run by western societies. (For example, praying facilities offered in Council or NHS run establishments would almost certainly not turn women away)
It isn't western societies who fail to allow women at mosque, it is mosques who do so ...

Sometimes when I go out with my daughter I am forced to delay my salaah because the local masjid cannot provide a few square feet for women to pray. I mean seriously, most masjids only have a few women praying at each salaah(except Ramadan) and women tend not to attend Jumuah so the men can have their few square feet back. :(
Perhaps this is a question of how great the demand is.
If only very few women attend, then keeping space aside (even if only a few square feet) might seem like a waste.

But imagine if many, many women started coming to mosque regularly ...
What difference it could make! :statisfie
Would the mosques not have to look at their space, and how it is distributed? Or consider getting a bigger place altogether?

I know that is Islam women aren't obligated to come to mosque for prayers - but it must be disheartening if women desire to pray with others in the masjid and end up being turned away.
There is something very powerful about praying in groups!
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Ramadhan
08-01-2010, 09:04 AM
Originally Posted by glo
It isn't western societies who fail to allow women at mosque, it is mosques who do so ...

Mosques fail to allow women in?
Interesting that you have so much knowledge about this, glo.

I have never set foot in a mosque in Indonesia which does not have a section for women, and the section is usually very ample.
Even in smallest praying rooms (musalla), there is always section for women.

I know that is Islam women aren't obligated to come to mosque for prayers - but it must be disheartening if women desire to pray with others in the masjid and end up being turned away.
There is something very powerful about praying in groups!
I see no obligation for women to pray in mosques as a dispensation in Islam for women. Can you imagine if women are obligated to pray in mosque while they have extremely busy schedule (raising children, household work, office work, etc).

Again, I am admiring your knowledge that women are turned away when they go to mosque. Such interesting info you have about women and Islam.
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glo
08-01-2010, 11:05 AM
Originally Posted by naidamar
Mosques fail to allow women in?
Interesting that you have so much knowledge about this, glo.

[...]

Again, I am admiring your knowledge that women are turned away when they go to mosque. Such interesting info you have about women and Islam.
You are right, naidamar. My own knowledge is very limited. The only mosque I have ever visited does have a very own room for muslimahs.

Because that's the limit of my own experience, I have based my comments on the statements of those muslimahs who spoke in this thread about having difficulties to access their local mosques for prayer. They are the ones who speak from their own experience, and they are the ones talking about not always being able to attend mosque for prayer..
What your or my experiences are, really isn't at issue here. Neither you nor I can contradict the women who have spoken about their own experiences - to do so would be to call them liars ... :hmm:

I know that I am not speaking as a Muslim, but as a Christian I love to attend my place of worship to pray and praise God in the company of my brothers and sisters.
So I can empathise with my Muslim sisters who aren't always able to do so themselves.
I think especially women reverts to Islam often feel a great desire to attend mosque, and they feel (rightly or wrongly) rejected when there is no space for them.
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Ramadhan
08-01-2010, 12:05 PM
Originally Posted by glo
Because that's the limit of my own experience, I have based my comments on the statements of those muslimahs who spoke in this thread about having difficulties to access their local mosques for prayer. They are the ones who speak from their own experience, and they are the ones talking about not always being able to attend mosque for prayer..
What your or my experiences are, really isn't at issue here. Neither you nor I can contradict the women who have spoken about their own experiences - to do so would be to call them liars ... :hmm:
AFAIK, only silverorchid in post #40 that has voiced her experience having to delay her salah because the mosque she went to did not have space for women.
I'm not sure where are these "women" not being able to go to mosque for prayer, according to you...
Funny how the word "liar" is easily thrown about...
:hmm:

I think especially women reverts to Islam often feel a great desire to attend mosque, and they feel (rightly or wrongly) rejected when there is no space for them.
With your wealth of info about Islam, I'm sure you are very familiar with the fact that the door of mosques are open to all muslims for ibadah, men and women (except those who are on period).
Some mosques in western countries might be forced to omit space for women maybe because of scarcity of space which cannot accommodate all muslims, which is still wrong according to sunnah.
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Asiyah3
08-01-2010, 03:13 PM
Originally Posted by glo
It isn't western societies who fail to allow women at mosque, it is mosques who do so ...

[...]

I know that is Islam women aren't obligated to come to mosque for prayers - but it must be disheartening if women desire to pray with others in the masjid and end up being turned away.
There is something very powerful about praying in groups!
Peace,
Thanks glo, but this is Muslims' issue not a Christian.
Reply

glo
08-01-2010, 05:58 PM
Originally Posted by **muslimah**
Peace,
Thanks glo, but this is Muslims' issue not a Christian.
Fair enough. I understand.
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sister herb
08-01-2010, 06:06 PM
Salam alaykum

I don´t like one gender only places to worship.
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cat eyes
08-01-2010, 06:26 PM
Originally Posted by Muslim Woman
Salaam Alaykum

not sure about women Imam concept . During the time of the Prophet pbuh , was there any women only mosque or woman Imam ?
:sl:

Aisha RA was the very first woman scholar.
Reply

TrueStranger
08-01-2010, 06:40 PM
Originally Posted by **muslimah**
Peace,
Thanks glo, but this is Muslims' issue not a Christian.


Salaam Aliakum

I think glo has the right to voice her opinion, it really doesn't matter if it is a Christian, Muslim or Jewish issue.
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sister herb
08-01-2010, 06:46 PM
Originally Posted by TrueStranger
Salaam Aliakum

I think glo has the right to voice her opinion, it really doesn't matter if it is a Christian, Muslim or Jewish issue.
Salam alaykum

I agree.
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Muslimeen
08-02-2010, 07:02 AM
Originally Posted by marwen
I dunno if it's correct or not to have a women only mosque. Probably it's ok, but I dunno it seems a little bit weired. Besides, we never seen this before in islam so I smell some little bida'ah here. But my question is why don't they pray in ordinary mosques ? is there a reason to pray without men ? (i'll read the op again, may be I missed the answer)
I agree, I don't know if it should be encouraged or not I will leave that to the scholars. Exactly the same question comes to my mind, If it was good and encouraged then why has it not been done in the 1400 year existence of Islam??
Surely there was something our pious ancesters and scholars knew or were aware of that they never encouraged or built any womens only masjids. I am quite sure the Sahaba (RA) would have established such women only masjids if it was better for women. So why not??
Reply

Muslimeen
08-02-2010, 07:25 AM
Originally Posted by TrueStranger
Like the Taliban.
Another Taliban hater. May allah guide you to the truth. This is not a taliban thread but none the less the truth must be spoken.

Allah forbid, but if these coward muslim haters invaded your country, imprisoned you and raped you over and over again like they did in Abu Ghraib you will realise the courage of the Taliban. The very same Taliban will be prepared to lay down their lives to save you just because you are their sister in Islam. Don't believe the media sister, when a person of group of people become firm on the Haqq (Truth) then no matter how hard the world may try to demolish and demonise them, there is nothing they will be able to do to stop them.
The western forces are on their KNEES. Do you not remember the condition of the Sahaba (Ra) the very beginning of Islam when the entire world was against them, yet they triumphed!! I believe the condition of the Taliban is the same, Insha allah they will triumph, truth will be separated from falsehood and they will spread to the four corners of the globe. Ameen.
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