Question:

It is agreed that there is a difference between the salaat of a male and female for which there are numerous dalaail, the only ikhtilaaf here is regarding the ruku and sujood.

 

Some of the ulama are insisting that this is a deoband issue of teaching the females to make ruku by just touching the tip of the knees (so the complete ruku is not done)and the sajdah of the females with the arms firmly on the ground (which goes against so many ahaadith) in contrast to the hadith in the maraaseel of Abu Dawood which indicates that the salaat of the female should be more astar therefore the ruku and sujood should be done in that manner to conceal the hayaa and shame of the female.

 

The questions are:

 

1. Is this issue of the salaat of the female regarding her ruku and sujood a deoband issue (as some of these scholars are saying) or it has come to us from our early hanafi fuqahaa the mataqaddimeen or mutaakhireen?

 

2.Which early hanafi kitab gives reference to this issue from the classical hanafi kutub?

 

 

Answer:

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

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

 

The method of a female’s Rukū and Sajdah has been discussed in great detail by many early and latter-day Hanafi Fuqahā (Jurists). Consider the following Ibārāt (Jurisprudic texts):

Allāmah Sarakhsi Rahimahullāh (483 A.H.) states the following in his Mabsūt regarding the method of a female’s Sajdah:

 

فَأَمَّا الْمَرْأَةُ فَتَحْتَفِزُ وَتَنْضَمُّ وَتُلْصِقُ بَطْنَهَا بِفَخِذَيْهَا وَعَضُدَيْهَا بِجَنْبَيْهَا هَكَذَا عَنْ عَلِيٍّ - رَضِيَ اللَّهُ تَعَالَى عَنْهُ - فِي بَيَانِ السُّنَّةِ فِي سُجُودِ النِّسَاءِ وَلِأَنَّ مَبْنَى حَالِهَا عَلَى السِّتْرِ فَمَا يَكُونُ أَسْتَرَ لَهَا فَهُوَ أَوْلَى» (المبسوط للسرخسى، ج 1، ص 23، دار المعرفة – بيروت)

Regarding the Sajdah of a female, she should keep herself contracted and should keep her stomach attached to her thighs. Her arms should be by her sides. This is what has been reported by Alī Radhiyallāhu Anhu regarding the Sunnah method of a female’s Sajdah. This is so because the natural condition of a female is that she must be concealed. Hence, the method that is more concealing for her is preferred. (Mabsūt)

 

Allāmah Nātifī Rahimahullāh, a Hanafī Faqīh of the 5th century states the following regarding the Sajdah of a female:

 

وإذا سجدت، وضعت بطنها على فخذيها، ولا تجافى كما يجافى الرجل (كتاب جمل الأحكام، ص 110، مكتبه نزار مصطفى الباز)

When a female prostrates (performs Sajdah), she should place her stomach on her thighs. She should not expand her body like a man expands his body (in Sajdah). (Kitāb Jumal al-Ahkām)

 

Allāmah Zailaī Rahimahullāh (743 A.H) states the following in Tabyīn al-Haqāiq regarding the Sajdah and Rukū of a female:

 

وَلَا تُجَافِي بَطْنَهَا عَنْ فَخِذَيْهَا.....وَلَا تَفْتَحُ إبْطَيْهَا فِي السُّجُودِ..... وَلَا تُفَرِّجُ أَصَابِعَهَا فِي الرُّكُوعِ (تبيين الحقائق، ج 1، ص 118،  المطبعة الكبرى الأميرية - بولاق، القاهرة)

A female should keep her stomach together with her thighs (during Sajdah)….. She should not keep her underarms open (in Sajdah so as to expose them)….. and she should not spread out her fingers while in Rukū (rather the fingers should be kept together). (Tabyīn al-Haqāiq)

 

Allāmah Ebrāhīm al-Halabī Rahimahullāh (956 A.H.) states the following regarding the Rukū of a female:

 

أما المرأة فتنحني بالركوع قليلا ولا تعتمد ولا تفرج أصابعها بل تضمها (حلبى صغير، ج 1، ص 96)

Regarding a female, she should slightly bend in Rukū without leaning completely. She should not spread out her fingers rather she should keep the fingers together. (Halabī Saghīr)

 

Allāmah Ibn Nujaim Rahimahullāh (970 A.H) states the following regarding the Sajdah and Rukū of a female:

 

وَتَضُمُّ فِي رُكُوعِهَا وَسُجُودِهَا وَلَا تُفَرِّجُ أَصَابِعَهَا فِي الرُّكُوعِ (الأشباه والنظائر، ج 1، ص 323،  دار الكتب العلمية،بيروت،لبنان)

A female should contract herself in Rukū and Sajdah. She should not spread out her fingers whilst in Rukū. (al-Ashbāh wan-Nadhāir)

 

Allāmah Tahtāwī Rahimahullāh (1231 A.H.) states the following regarding the Rukū and Sajdah of a female:

 

ولا تفرج أصابعها في الركوع وتنحني في الركوع قليلا بحيث تبلغ حد الركوع فلا تزيد على ذلك لأنه أستر لها وتلزم مرفقيها بجنبيها فيه وتلزق بطنها بفخذيها في السجود (حاشية الطحطاوى على مراقى الفلاح، فصل: فى بيان سننها)

A female should not spread out her fingers in Rukū. She should bend slightly in Rukū such that she fulfills the minimal requirement of bending in Rukū and she should not bend more than this because this is more concealing for her. She should keep her elbows attached to her sides. She should keep her stomach attached to her thighs whilst in Sajdah. (Hāshiyah at-Tahtāwī Alā Marāqī al-Falāh) 

 

Allāmah Shāmi Rahimahullāh (1252 A.H.) states the following in Radd al-Muhtār regarding the Sajdah and Rukū of a female:

 

وَتَنْحَنِي فِي الرُّكُوعِ قَلِيلًا، وَلَا تَعْقِدُ وَلَا تُفَرِّجُ فِيهِ أَصَابِعَهَا بَلْ تَضُمُّهَا وَتَضَعُ يَدَيْهَا عَلَى رُكْبَتَيْهَا.....وَتَنْضَمُّ فِي رُكُوعِهَا وَسُجُودِهَا، وَتَفْتَرِشُ ذِرَاعَيْهَا (رد المحتار، ج 1، ص 504، سعيد)

A female should bend only a little during Rukū. She should not spread out her fingers rather she should keep them together. She should merely place her hands on her knees….. She should keep herself together (contracted) during Rukū and Sajdah. She should spread her arms on the ground whilst in Sajdah. (Radd al-Muhtār)

 

The following text of Fatāwā Hindiyyah is clear with regards to the Rukū of a female:

 

وَالْمَرْأَةُ تَنْحَنِي في الرُّكُوعِ يَسِيرًا (الهندية، ج 1، ص 74، دار الفكر)

A female should only bend a little in Rukū. (al-Hindiyyah)

 

Note: Rasūlullāh Sallallāhu Alaihi Wa Sallam has prohibited men from spreading their arms on the ground like a dog while in Sajdah.  This prohibition is specific to men and does not extend to females.  Consider the Hadīth recorded by Imām Muslim Rahimahullāh:

 

وَيَنْهَى أَنْ يَفْتَرِشَ الرَّجُلُ ذِرَاعَيْهِ افْتِرَاشَ السَّبُعِ (صحيح مسلم)

Nabī (Sallallāhu Alaihi Wa Sallalm) prohibited that a man should spread his arms (in Sadjah) like a dog spreads its arms. (Sahīh Muslim)

 

In fact, there are many Ahādīth that prove that a female should keep herself contracted while in Sajdah.  Consider the following Ahādīth:

 

عن يزيدَ بن أبي حبيب أنَّ رسولَ الله مَرَّ عَلَى امرأتينِ تصليانِ، فقال : «إذَا سَجَدْتُمَا فَضُمَّا بعضَ اللحمِ إلى الأرضِ، فإنَّ المرأةَ لَيْسَتْ في ذلِكَ كالرجلِ (مراسيل لابي داؤد، ج 1، ص 117، مؤسسة الرسالة – بيروت)

“When you make prostration, keep your body attached to the ground because a woman has not been created like a man” (Marāsī Li Abī Dāwūd)

 

وعن على قال إذا سجدت المرأة فلتحتفز ولتلصق فخذيها ببطنها (مصنف عبد الرزاق، ج 3، ص 138، المكتب الإسلامي) 

Alî (Radhiyallahu Anhu) says, “When a woman prostrates, she must practise ihtifâz and keep her thighs close to her stomach.” (Musannaf Abd ar-Razzāq)

 

قال إبراهيم النخعي: كانت المرأة تؤمر إذا سجدت أن تلزق بطنها بفخذيها كيلا ترتفع عجزتها ولا تجافي كما يجافي الرجل (السنن الكبري للبيهقي، ج 2، ص 314، دار الكتب العلمية)

Ibrâhîm رحمه الله says that when a woman prostrates, she should join her thighs to her stomach without raising her posterior and without stretching her limbs out like a male.(As-Sunan al-Kubrā Lil-Baihaqī)         

 

And Allah Ta’āla Knows Best

Abdul Azīm bin Abdur Rahman,
Student Darul Iftaa
U.S.A.

Checked and Approved by,
Mufti Ebrahim Desai.

 

 

 

 

KHARWASTAN

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