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Hijaab and Nqaab

This is advice from Islamic Education Guidance Centre so you can benefit insha Allah. Please if you have any concern about the Hijab or Niqab contact our center and read  this carefully.

Those who have converted to Islam have had other Muslims harassing them for wearing Niqab. For those who have converted to Islam, the problems come from a wide range of people, husbands, father in laws, sister in laws, other Muslims some who are not practicing Islam and sometimes from those who appear to be practicing parts of Islam but not up to par with the Islamic teachings. It appears most of the problems that Niqabi sisters face is from Muslims born into Muslim families. Although on rare occasions some convert sisters too have harassed Niqabi sisters. 

Let us look at firstly at the Issue of Niqab in brief. Niqab is covering the face. Righteous Islamic scholars have talked about the issue of Niqab in detail. Some of them believe Niqab is fard (compulsory) and others believe it is not fard but it is a highly recommended Sunnah. 

For instance Sheikh 'Abdul-'Aziz 'Abdullah bin Baaz, Sheikh Muhammad Nur Qawi and Sheikh Muhammad bin Saalih Al-'Uthaimeen said that the Niqab is indeed wajib (compulsory upon the believing women and their argument is strong and convincing, Others such as the Muhaddith of our time Sheikh Muhammad Naasiru-Deen Al-Albaanee said that the Niqab is not wajib (compulsory) but rather Mustahab (highly recommended) and this argument is also strong and convincing. 

therefore both sides believe that it is highly recommended for Muslim women to wear Niqab and the sisters should wear it. The dispute between the scholars is weather a sister sins if she does not wear Niqab. Even those who believe that Niqab is not Fard say that when the Muslimah is very close to the men. She MUST cover her face. Or if she knows that such men will look at her with desire or a wrong way then she MUST also cover her face. 

Many of the great Ulumaa of the past have also said that Niqab is fard (compulsory). Therefore the safe option to take is to wear the Niqab. 

For if you wear it and it was not fard (compulsory). Then you will Insha’Allah at least get the reward for practicing something that the Prophet peace be upon him approved of and his wives and the sahabiyat did. And they are the roles models for the women of this Ummah with regards to how a women should dress and behave. So you do not lose out at all if you wear the Niqab.  

Niqab is indeed a practice of the Sahabiyat and the mothers of the believers 

Sheikh al-Islam Bin Taymiyah said: 

The truth of the matter is that Allah has made two types of adornment: visible and invisible. It is permissible for a woman to show her visible, outward adornment to people other than her husband and mahrams. Before the verse of hijab was revealed the women used to go out without a jilbaab and the men could see their faces and hands. When it was permissible for a woman to show her face and hands, it was permissible to look at them because it was permissible for a woman to show them. Then when Allaah revealed the verse of hijab and said (interpretation of the meaning): 

“O Prophet! Tell your wives and your daughters and the women of the believers to draw their cloaks (veils) all over their bodies (i.e. screen themselves completely except the eyes or one eye to see the way). That will be better, that they should be known (as free respectable women) so as not to be annoyed. And Allah is Ever Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful” 

[al-Ahzaab 33:59] 

then the women began to observe hijab in front of men. 

It was narrated that ‘Aisha (may Allah be pleased with her) said:

“May Allah have mercy on the women of the Muhaajireen. When Allah revealed the words (interpretation of the meaning) 
‘and to draw their veils all over Juyoobihinna (i.e. their bodies, faces, necks and bosoms)…” 

[al-Noor 24:31], they tore their aprons and covered their faces with them.” 

(Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 4480) 

The Mufassireen, such as Al-Qurtubi, site in their Tafseer of the Ayah on Jilbaab (Al-Ahzaab 33:59) that the Jilbaab is: "a cloth which covers the entire body... Bin 'Abbaas and 'Ubaidah As-Salmaani said that it is to be fully wrapped around the women's body, so that nothing appears but one eye with which she can see." [Tafseer Al-Qurtubi]. 

However, aside from this Tafseer, we do in fact have an authentic Ahadeeth mentioning Niqab. The Prophet (peace be upon him) commanded: "A woman (pilgrim) does not cover her face with a Niqab (i.e. does not tie or affix) nor should she wear gloves." [Al-Bukhaari, Muslim; Saheeh Abi Dawood.  #1600; authenticated by Al-Albaanee]. 

Thus, from this authentic Ahadeeth, we can clearly see that the Sahabiyat (RA) were accustomed to covering their faces with Niqab otherwise, there would not have been any need for the Prophet (peace be upon him) to specifically forbid it during the state of Ihram. Likewise, during Ihram, men are forbidden to cover their heads which shows that outside of being in the state of Ihram they were accustomed to covering their heads, and Allah knows best. 

It was narrated that ‘Aisha said:

 “The riders used to pass by us when we were with the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) in ihram. When they came near, each of us would lower her jilbaab from her head over her face, and when they passed by we would uncover (our faces).” 

Narrated by Abu Dawood, 1833; Ahmad, 24067 

Sheikh al-Albaani said in Jilbaab al-Mar’ah al-Muslimah (107): its isnaad is hassan because of the existence of corroborating reports. 

This Ahadeeth indicates that a Muslimah does not wear a fixed Niqab when in ihram but when men come near she can cover the face by lowering the jilbaab from her head over her face and uncover the face when the men pass by during Ihram. 

Abu Dawood (1783) narrated that Jaabir bin ‘Abd-Allaah said:

 “The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: ‘When any one of you wants to propose marriage to a woman, if he can look at that which will motivate him to go ahead and marry her, then let him do so.’ I proposed marriage to a girl and I used to hide myself until I saw that which motivated me to go ahead and marry her, and then I married her.” Classed as hasan by al-Albaani in Saheeh Abi Dawood, no. 1832. In the report narrated by Bin Maajah it says that he hid in her garden to see her. 

That This Ahadeeth indicates the women of the Sahabah used to cover their faces, because if it had been the custom for women to uncover their faces, there would have been no need to hide, because he would have been able to see her in any place if she had been uncovering her face. 

It was narrated from ‘Aisha… that Safwaan bin al-Mu’attal al-Sulami al-Dhakwaani was lagging behind the army. He came to where I had stopped and saw the black shape of a person sleeping. He recognized me when he saw me, because he had seen me before hijab was enjoined. I woke up when I heard him saying ‘Inna Lillaahi wa inna alayhi raaji’oon (verily to Allah we belong and unto Him is our return),’ when he saw me, and I covered my face with my jilbaab.” 

(Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 3910; Muslim, 2770) 

Look at how our mother Aisha, who is regarded as one of the best scholars of all time, understood the commandment of hijab. She speaks of Safwaan bin al-Mu’attal al-Sulami al-Dhakwaani recognizing her because he had seen her face before the commandment of hijab and further again she covered her face. This thus shows the importance of covering the face. 

My dear brothers and sisters. The issue of both men and women covering their aura is not a light issue. It is the goal of shay tan (Satan) to cause mankind to become naked and his shame be exposed from the time Adam, the father of the whole of humanity, was created. 

Allah promised our father Adam, that in jannah (heaven) he would never be naked and he will never go hungry. Allah honored Adam and the whole of mankind by creating for us clothing. Such an honor was not bestowed upon the animals, Satan and the jinn’s. They do not have cloth. 

The Story of Satan enmity towards Adam and whole of Humanity is repeated in almost every juz of the Quran. Every Muslim should know this story and understand its implication.

may Allah Guide us to the right path and may he stregngthen the Sunnah. Hadaa wallaahu a’lam. Wa’ilmullahi Attam WA Akmal. Wassalamu Alaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakaatuhu.   

Thanks

yours sincerely.
I.E.G.C

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