Is a Woman’s Prayer at Home Better?


Answered by Shaykh Muhammad al-Hassan al-Dado | Translated and Abridged by SuhaibWebb.com

Question:

Some jurists say that the increased reward for praying in the masjid does not apply to women because of the known hadith, “A woman’s prayer in her house is better than in her courtyard, and her prayer in her own room is better than her prayer in the rest of the house” (reported by Abu Dawud). Does this hadith apply to all women?

Answer

The more favorable opinion is that it does not apply to every woman. The Prophet (ﷺ) told this to Umm Humayd Al-Sa`idiyyah, and it appears to be specifically pertaining to her because other women would pray Fajr and all the other prayers with the Prophet (ﷺ).

It is also confirmed that he said: “Do not prevent the female servants of Allah from (entering) the Houses of Allah and they should go out unadorned.” He also said: “If any woman puts perfume on, she should not pray with us the last `Isha’.” And, from the hadith of `Aisha in al-Muwatta’, “The women would pray Fajr with the Prophet (ﷺ), and they would return wrapped in their garments, unknown in the darkness.”

The Prophet would order the men not to leave the masjid until the women did, and he ordered the women not to rise up (after prostrating) until the men had sat down in case the men’s privates became uncovered (many of the Prophet’s companions were poor and only wore garments that covered their navel to their knees). He also left the last rows in the masjid for the women, and said that the best of the men’s rows are the first ones, and the worst are the last; and the best of the women’s rows are the last and the worst are the first.

So, all this indicates that women also gain more reward for praying in the masjid, just like men. This is especially true when the masajid in our times have designated areas for women. During the Prophet’s (ﷺ) time the men and women were not separated in the masjid; the women simply prayed in rows behind the men.

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41 Comments

  1. khaled says:

    What does Allah swt says in suraht alahzab verse 33…..thank you.

  2. Jazzak Allahu Khayr for posting this.

    Shaykh Abdallah Adhami gives a detailed explanation regarding this interpretation of the hadith of Umm Humayd in his audio series “Family and Society Today.”

    It is interesting to note that the Shaykh includes having designated women’s sections as a factor which makes it more beneficial in our times for women to attend the masajid…of course many women are calling for the removal of these separate sections (for good reason as they are often small, uncomfortable spaces that do not allow for meaningful connection with the imam in salah.)

    It just draws our attention to the fact that both understanding the time and society of the Prophet (saw) enough to understand the revelation and also understanding our own society well enough to apply those lessons to our situations requires tremendous fiqh (understanding) and hikma as well as a deep sincerity because it is so easy (on any side of an issue) to fall into being guided by one’s desires and then use knowledge of the sources to rationalize/justify one’s own desires rather than truly to seek guidance in the revelation.

    May Allaah (swt) grant our scholars wisdom and sincerity.

  3. Umm says:

    I’m not sure I understand some things:

    – If the hadith was directed only to Umm Humayd, why is the wording “A woman’s prayer in her house is better…” and not “Your prayer in your house is better…”

    – The evidence shows definitely women attended the masjid and should not be prevented from the masjid, even at Isha prayers. Further, there was clear etiquette in place to guard the anonymity of women, orchestrated time delays to protect/block the sight between the genders and, in reserving space at the back for women, a clear delineation of space for each gender. However, how does evidence that women prayed in the masjid constitute evidence that praying at the masjid gains more reward for women? It just shows that some prayed at the masjid, some prayed at the masjid.

    We know from the evidence cited that the back lines are better for her than the front, when in congregational prayer at the masjid, but – again – does it follow that the back lines are better than her prayer at her home?

    – What about sunnah prayers? Is there any hierarchy in that? I thought some of men’s sunnah prayers were best done at his home. Is that also true for women, or based on the above evidence are all a woman’s prayers, including her sunnah prayers, better at the masjid?

    Jazakum Allahu khairan

    • ISMAEEL MARIKAR says:

      For men the best prayers are what they pray at home,
      except the obligatory prayers which should be prayed in congregation in the Masjid

  4. Umm says:

    I meant to say, it shows that some women prayed at the masjid, some prayed at home.

  5. al-suyuufi says:

    You definitely proved that it’s okay for a woman to pray at the masjid, but there’s no evidence that the issue of REWARDS doesn’t apply because the Hadith was general with nothing to contradict it. I understand that there’s more benefit for women to go to the masjid sometimes, because they’d get to mix with fellow sisters, bring their kids to a good place, gain ilm for themselves and their kids, etc. This especially applies today since all we have at home now is Television and internet to raise our families. But in the strict sense of Ajr/Hasanaat, how can you say that anything other than the Hadith applies? Just because the Sahabiyaat didn’t always stay at home doesn’t mean the Hadith is limited, because there’s a difference between the Ajr you get and the other benefits you might gain. Also, the issue of what deeds are rewardable and by how much is a matter of Ghayb since our intellect can’t tell us what gains us more reward, so we have to depend on Revelation to tell us that.

  6. brother_bruce says:

    i’m inclined to agree with what ‘Umm’ and ‘al-Suyufi’ said. everyone agrees that its OK for women to pray at the Masjid… as Rasoolullah (sal Allahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said, we shouldnt prevent them from going to the Masjid.

    so the option to pray at the masjid is definitely there. but where is it best to pray? during the time of Rasoolullah (sal Allahu ‘alayhi wa sallam), the added benefit of being in the masjid was that our Teacher (sal Allahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) was there, so listening to his naseeha and commands could definitely outweigh the benefit of staying at home, and maybe this is why the female companions came to the masjid more often?

    For our times, the situation is different in a few ways. On the one hand, the Prophet (sal Allahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) is no longer amongst us. On the other, there isnt the same level of etiquette between the genders (although we should strive to change this).

    As for the hadith, the wording of the hadith is general… it (the wording) wasnt directed towards any sahaabiya in general. How can we take anything BUT the face value of the hadith, that more ajr would be accrued if a woman were to pray at home?

    I’d love to see a reconciliation.

    wsalaams

  7. Umm says:

    – another example about the generality of the hadith came to me…The hadith about the man asking the prophet (pbuh) for advice, and he replied, “La tardab” (don’t be angry). This was advice specific to the individual, and he is advised him using the “you”. He didn’t say, “A man should not become angry.” Yet we generalize this hadith to everyone, male and female.

    I hope I’m not being confrontational. I pray in the masjid, and at home. When there’s a class, or lecture at the masjid I often go. I take the kids to the masjid especially to learn good manners and be with the muslims, I enjoy seeing my sisters there. Some Fridays I have heard a khutbah that has really benefited me. I hope to gain rewards for all those things (learning, sisterhood, etc.) as well as the prayer.

    However, if all things being equal — there is no class or special lecture, it is not Friday, the kids are not with me, etc. — and the time for dhuhr or asr comes in for example, and I am equidistant from the masjid and my home (and this situation commonly arises), I would choose my home inshaAllah, and hope to gain more reward from Allah ta’ala for that prayer, specifically on the basis of that hadith. So is the sheikh saying the reverse?

  8. Suhaib Webb says:

    Asalamu alaykum,

    Dear Umm:

    Awesome comments and interaction. I would like to note that their are verses of the Qur’an and hadith of the Prophet (sa) that disprove of anger which speak to everyone, and when coupled with the hadith of Abu Hurairah (ra) are applied to the general body of the Muslims.

    Some examples,

    The Qur’an:

    “Those who spend [in Allâh's Cause - deeds of charity, alms, etc.] in prosperity and in adversity, who repress anger, and who pardon men; verily, Allâh loves Al-Muhsinûn (the good doers).”

    Hadith:

    “The best of you are those who are slow to anger and swift to cool down…Beware of anger, for it is a live coal on the heart of the descendants of Adam.” – Realted by al-Tirmidhi

    I would hope that is sufficient to show why your usage of the hadith of Abu Huraira is out of place here? It would be like taking the hadih of the Prophet (sa), when he said to a man “Pray” and forgetting the other verses and hadith that mention prayer as an act of worship for all.

    Secondly, one of the important principles for understanding texts mentioned by our scholars is that “Actions speak louder than words.” Thus, while we have the statement of the Prophet, we have the actions of the Sahabiyat which are considered tafsir of those statements.

    One example:

    I remember, while preparing the Mothers of the Believers, that ‘Aiesha specifically requested that her home be respected in a way that would allow her to pray with the congregation. Would she have done so if praying in her home alone would have been of less reward?

    So, while I respect your contentions, I agree with the sheikh, the general statements of the Prophet and with the actions of the Sahabiyat and Aiesha.

    Allah knows best
    Suhaib

  9. al-suyuufi says:

    Also, the blog post itself says this: “The Prophet would order the men not to leave the masjid until the women did” – in fact, this was to the extent that the Prophet saws would not turn around after the fardh salah [which was his sunnah to do] until all the women left. He would wait a few seconds for the women to leave, then turn around. So even though the women were praying at the masjid, their time there [at least for the salah] was minimal since they left right after the tasleem, and Allahu a’lam when they’d arrive beforehand.

  10. Furhan says:

    As salam u alaikum,
    A few thoughts:
    – There are other narrations besides the one mentioned in the question that encourage women to offer their prayers at home:
    Sayyida Umm Salama (ra) narrates that the Messenger of Allah (saw) said: “The best Mosque for a woman is the inner part of her home.” (Musnad Ahmad & Tabrani)

    Sayyiduna Abd Allah ibn Umar (ra) narrates that the Messenger of Allah (saw) said: “Do not prevent your womenfolk from attending the Mosque, even though their houses are better for them.” (Sunan Abu Dawud)
    Sayyida Umm Salama (ra) narrates that the Messenger of Allah (saw) said: “A woman’s prayer in her inner room is better than her prayer in the outside room, and her prayer in the outside room is better than her prayer in the courtyard, and her prayer in the courtyard is better than her prayer in the Mosque.” (Mu’jam of Imam Tabrani)
    The wording of these narrations is general (‘aam).
    – The Sheikh says, “all this indicates that women also gain more reward for praying in the masjid, just like men.” The narrations he mentioned show that the sahabiyyat (ra) used to pray in the masjid; how do they establish that women also gain more reward for doing so?
    – Sheikh Suhaib: you mention that Aisha (ra) requested that her home be respected in a way that would allow her to pray with the congregation. By doing so, wasn’t she still technically praying at home? (pls correct me if I’m off on this)
    Lastly this is a link to an answer given by Mufti ibn Adam regarding this issue. Its long, but worth reading. http://www.daruliftaa.com/question.asp?txt_QuestionID=q-21225280

    Furhan

    • Suhaib Webb says:

      Asalamu alaykum,

      Akhi Furhan:

      Many thanks for your time and stopping by to contribute. I will try and note a few points about the hadiths you mentioned above and hope, inshallah, that Allah will guide us to the truth.

      Also, let me commend everyone here for having such amazing adab and expressing such honesty coupled with a critical eye. Both are certainly needed if we are going to grow and move forward as a community.

      The first hadith you mentioned is:

      Sayyida Umm Salama (ra) narrates that the Messenger of Allah (saw) said: “A woman’s prayer in her inner room is better than her prayer in the outside room, and her prayer in the outside room is better than her prayer in the courtyard, and her prayer in the courtyard is better than her prayer in the Mosque.” (Mu’jam of Imam Tabrani)

      The chain of this hadith contains زيد بن المهاجر بن قنفذ
      Ibn Hajar noted that he is “Abandoned.”

      The Second Hadith:
      Sayyida Umm Salama (ra) narrates that the Messenger of Allah (saw) said: “The best Mosque for a woman is the inner part of her home.” (Musnad Ahmad & Tabrani)

      In its chain is ابن لهيعة and he is considered weak and known for narrating rejected hadith.

      As for the hadith of Ibn Umar, although many of the great scholars of hadith considered it sound, there remains some questions regarding its isnad that perhaps some of our mashaikh and senior tulab al-’ilm can answer for me?

      It is related on behalf of حبيب بن أبي ثابت who, although considered a faqih and sound by al-Dhahabi and others, was known for his irsal and tadlis as well. Secondly, this statement, “And her prayers in her home are better for her.” does not appear in any narration save that of Abu Dawud with the isnad mentioned above. The hadith that states “Do not forbid the female servants of Allah from the houses of Allah” is found in other authentic reports without this statement.

      In fact, it goes against that actions of Ibn ‘Umar himself who punished a man, in some narrations saying he hit the man on his chest, who said “By Allah I will not let her (his wife) go.”

      So, that takes us back to the axiom, “Actions speak louder than words” and “If actions contradict words, the actions are given preference.”

      As for what is without a doubt authentic and, in some cases, reaching that status of tawatur or istifadah, we find the following:

      From Abdu al-Razaq (thiqa) from Sufyan al-Thawri (thabit) from Hisham bin ‘Arwa (thiqa) that during the time of Umar bin al-Khatab, the latter asked Suliman to lead the women in prayers during Ramadan in the back of the masjid.

      From Abd al-Razaq (thiqa) from Mu’amr (thabi) from al-Zuhri (tahbit faqih) that ‘Atika, the wife of ‘Umar, used to pray in the mosque and he told her, “By Allah, you know that I don’t like this.” She replied, “I will not stop unless you stop me.” He responded, “Indeed, I will not stop you.” On a side not, she was in the masjid when he was stabbed (May Allah be pleased with them). In another narration from al-Bukhari in his Sahih, “What kept him from doing that was the Prophet’s words, “Don’t forbid women from the masjid of Allah.” (1/305)

      May Allah guide us to what pleased Him and grant us insaf.

      Suhaib

      • Furhan says:

        As Salam u alaikum,
        Sheikh Suhaib, jazakAllah khair for your reply. May Allah (swt) increase us in knowledge and action.
        I will look into the sanad of the hadith of ibn Umar (ra), inshAllah. As for the axiom “Actions speak louder than words” and “If actions contradict words, the actions are given preference”, I don’t think it comes into play here because his punishing the man for not letting his wife go doesn’t contradict his narration.
        As for the narrations you mentioned, they establish that its permissible for women to pray at the masjid ( no disagreement on that) and that they did so at the time of the Prophet (saw) and afterwards, but does it establish that women also gain more reward for praying in the masjid, just like men? I don’t want to sound like I’m repeating, I want to have a good understanding of this issue.
        Also, is there any way I can get at you through email?
        Furhan

        • Suhaib Webb says:

          Asalamu alaykum,

          It is a pleasure to learn from you and benefit, sidi. May Allah make our steps, breaths and words for His sake alone and unite us with our Master, Muhammad (sa).

          SDW

      • ISMAEEL MARIKAR says:

        The Prophet sallallahu alaihi wa sallam ,while saying that we should not prevent women going to masjids, STRESSED that a woman’s prayer in her house,in her room in a corner is better.Mind you you he said this as regards a woman who expressed her desire to pray in the Prophet’s mosque with him,where the prayer is 1000 times more than in any other mosque.When we have a clear text, there is no room for conjecture.Obeying the Messenger, sallalahualaihi wa sallam,when he says something is better, can bring more merit.
        Allah knows best

  11. ummbudimary says:

    i didnt understand something u noted towards teh end of your comment, Sh Suhaib. You said Aisha requested that her home be respected in a way that would allow her to pray w/ the congregation?
    –Did u mean constructed?

    I didn’t understand the implication of that also. Does she want it like that so that she can pray w/ the congregation *in* the mosque? or somehow pray in her home while following congregation(since their homes were right next to the mosque?-not sure if that’s even valid or not ?)

    just confused. can u please explain.

    • Suhaib Webb says:

      Asalamu alaykum

      When the masjid grew she wanted to insure that her home would not be situated in a way that would not allow her to pray with the congregation when they prayed. It could be argued that she was acting on both hadith!

      SDW

  12. ummbudimary says:

    ok i researched on the net a bit more about this issue because this answer seems so different from the hadith i’ve heard before.

    so i found this hadith and now i’m wondering how this hadith fits into the picture ?
    “Do not prevent the female slaves of Allaah from coming to the mosques of Allaah, but their houses are better for them.”

    i do not know the source/authenticity. i apologize for that. If someone knows, can they please post.

  13. ummbudimary says:

    ok another realization..that just hit me..

    the sheikh is actualy not talking about the mosque being better for women. he said the reward for praying in congregation applies to women as well.

    alhamdulillah.

    • sabirah says:

      salam, I would assume that Ai’sha (r) would have been at high risk of assassination and it therefore would have been better for her to have congregational prayers at home – her home be recognized like a masjid then? It doesn’t say if it’s just women or if it’s mixed prayers at her house?
      @ Umm, I understand that the shaykh is talking about praying at the masjid in the above transliteration.
      I have heard opinions/fatwas that state that prayer in the masjid is invalid if the individual can’t see the imam, how is it with women when they can’t see the imam due to the screens?

      • ISMAEEL MARIKAR says:

        Why all this debate,when there is a clear text,which I have quoted above.We are told to obey Allah and His Messenger.s.a.w.s.
        The Imams have clearly stated that we should not follow their opinion,when their is a saheeh hadith
        “It is not for a believer man or woman,when Allah and his Messenger have decreed a matter,that they should have any option in their decision.and whoever disobeys Allah and his Messenger,he has indeed strayed into plain error” surah al ahzab-ayah 36

        I would advise my brothers and sisters to read
        the entire Surah

        To have a screen is an innovation.

        One must see the Imam or the one in front who sees him.

        The best rows for men are from the front.
        i.e.the first row
        and for women from the rear
        i.e. the last row

        During the the Prophets time, the men woulddelay a bit until, the women had left.

        .

  14. rosy says:

    AA
    Not sure about the practicality of women attending regular daily prayers in masjid…i certainly cannot :-) If indeed reward is greater in masjid, it would mean a lot of women who need to stay at home, missing out!

    Unless the masjids are very local, almost adjecent to homes, it would be quite a trek for a lot of women with children, or other care responsibilities in the home.

    Is it possible to designate an area of the home as a ‘masjid’?

  15. Student says:

    Assalamu `alaykum,

    The report of Umm Humayd is not the only evidence that suggests that the prayer of a woman is superior in her home. Here is another text that clearly shows that the ruling applies to the generality of women:

    عن ابن عمر قال قال رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم لا تمنعوا نساءكم المساجد وبيوتهن خير لهن

    Abdullah b. Umar reported that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “Do not prevent your women from [attending] mosques. Yet, their homes are better for them.”

    Ibn Hajar says in Fath al-Bari: “It was related by Abu Dawud and declared sahih by Ibn Khuzayma.” It was also related by Hakim, who said it meets the criteria of Bukhari and Muslim, and Dhahabi agreed. Nawawi declared it sahih in his Majmu`, saying it meets the criteria of Bukhari, and Albani graded it sahih in Sahih al-Targhib wa al-Tarhib.

    Allah knows best.

  16. Abu Ahmad says:

    So on a complete side note; is it al-Dado, al-Dido, al-Didou, or al-Dedo? All of which I believe I have seen on this blog alone.

  17. Umm says:

    Assalaamu Alaikum,

    Barak Allah feekum, Sheikh Suhaib. This certainly provides a broader/deeper knowledge base on this topic. Jazakum Allahu khairan to all the contributors. Ameen to the du’as above.

    What Sheikh Suhaib said about Ayesha’s arguably acting on both ahadith – by having all female congregation in her home – was a lovely observation and makes me even more in awe of our “mother’s” intelligence – may Allah be pleased with her!

    To show how these ahadith relate to “real life”, I just wanted to share another scenario where I have regularly tried to apply the hadith(s) on prayer in the home being better. That is, on many jumuahs.

    I find the masajid in my area have major parking space shortages. Since jumuah prayer attendance is mandatory for men, and not for women, I feel uncomfortable knowing I’ve got my big ole van parked in the masjid parking lot, while other brothers have to park a mile away from the masjid and get late for jumuah having driven around for 15 mins. trying to find parking. I don’t have to take off time from work for jumuah like most brothers, and usually have the luxury of coming way early.

    So — I tend to pray dhuhr at home to leave space for the brothers, again relying on the hadith about prayer to make me feel even better about my choice, as well as hopefully exercising the spirit of cooperation with my brothers.

    Now, I want to stress I don’t always keep away from the jumuah prayers, and I have benefited from many jumuah prayers alhamdulillah. This is not a plug for keeping women away from the masjid. I’m highlighting a particular situation in which I tend to apply the hadith(s) about prayer being better at home for women.

    More parking space, prayer hall space and more actual masajid will inshaAllah make the masjid experience more accomodating for everyone. (Again, Ayesha (ra) requesting the construction of more space shows her leading the way!)

    I’m not sure what I will change, if anything, based on the discussion above. I’ll have to kind of chew it over. But I will certainly enjoy praying at home with my daughters even more now.

    Jazakum Allahu khairan

    • ISMAEEL MARIKAR says:

      Sister, may Allah reward you abundantly.
      On my trips to San Jose , I have attended Jummah
      at MCA, where there are two prayers due to parking problems.
      I go for Umrah every year, but after my Umrah I avoid TAWAF when it
      is crowded with those who will be doing their Tawaf
      al Qudoom and Umrah. Making this sacrifice,I feel
      Allah will reward me for the consideration for the convenience of others.
      This is what Islam is about.

  18. Student says:

    Assalamu alaykum,

    After my previous comment, I realized that the video clip and its translated excerpt refer to two separate hadiths altogether, and then unfortunately mix them with one another.

    The hadith of Umm Humayd is related by Ahmad, and it is different from the hadith in Abu Dawud, which is narrated by Abdullah b. Mas`ud.

    The First Hadith:

    حَدَّثَنَا هَارُونُ، حَدَّثَنَا عَبْدُ اللهِ بْنُ وَهْبٍ، قَالَ: حَدَّثَنِي دَاوُدُ بْنُ قَيْسٍ، عَنْ عَبْدِ اللهِ بْنِ سُوَيْدٍ الْأَنْصَارِيِّ، عَنْ عَمَّتِهِ أُمِّ حُمَيْدٍ امْرَأَةِ أَبِي حُمَيْدٍ السَّاعِدِيِّ، أَنَّهَا جَاءَتِ النَّبِيَّ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ فَقَالَتْ: يَا رَسُولَ اللهِ، إِنِّي أُحِبُّ الصَّلَاةَ مَعَكَ، قَالَ: ” قَدْ عَلِمْتُ أَنَّكِ تُحِبِّينَ الصَّلَاةَ مَعِي، وَصَلَاتُكِ فِي بَيْتِكِ خَيْرٌ لَكِ مِنْ صَلَاتِكِ فِي حُجْرَتِكِ، وَصَلَاتُكِ فِي حُجْرَتِكِ خَيْرٌ مِنْ صَلَاتِكِ فِي دَارِكِ، وَصَلَاتُكِ فِي دَارِكِ خَيْرٌ لَكِ مِنْ صَلَاتِكِ فِي مَسْجِدِ قَوْمِكِ، وَصَلَاتُكِ فِي مَسْجِدِ قَوْمِكِ خَيْرٌ لَكِ مِنْ صَلَاتِكِ فِي مَسْجِدِي “، قَالَ: فَأَمَرَتْ فَبُنِيَ لَهَا مَسْجِدٌ فِي أَقْصَى شَيْءٍ مِنْ بَيْتِهَا وَأَظْلَمِهِ، فَكَانَتْ تُصَلِّي فِيهِ حَتَّى لَقِيَتِ اللهَ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ

    On the authority of Umm Humayd, who came to the Prophet (peace be upon him) and said, “O Messenger of Allah, I love to pray with you.” He replied, “I know that you love to pray with me. However, your prayer in your storage room is better than your prayer in your bedroom; your prayer in your bedroom is better than your prayer in your courtyard; your prayer in your courtyard is better than your prayer in the prayer area of your relatives; and your prayer in the prayer area of your relatives is better than your prayer in my mosque.” So she ordered that a prayer-place be built for her in the furthest and darkest part of her house, and she always prayed there until she met Allah.

    Once again, it was related by Ahmad, declared hasan by Ibn Hajar and Arna`ut, and sahih by Ibn Khuzayma, Ibn Hibban and Albani.

    The Second Hadith:

    حَدَّثَنَا ابْنُ الْمُثَنَّى أَنَّ عَمْرَو بْنَ عَاصِمٍ حَدَّثَهُمْ قَالَ حَدَّثَنَا هَمَّامٌ عَنْ قَتَادَةَ عَنْ مُوَرِّقٍ عَنْ أَبِي الْأَحْوَصِ عَنْ عَبْدِ اللَّهِ
    عَنْ النَّبِيِّ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ قَالَ صَلَاةُ الْمَرْأَةِ فِي بَيْتِهَا أَفْضَلُ مِنْ صَلَاتِهَا فِي حُجْرَتِهَا وَصَلَاتُهَا فِي مَخْدَعِهَا أَفْضَلُ مِنْ صَلَاتِهَا فِي بَيْتِهَا

    Abdullah b. Mas`ud narrated that the Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “A woman’s prayer in her bedroom is better than her prayer in her courtyard; and her prayer in her storage room is better than her prayer in her bedroom.”

    This hadith is related by Abu Dawud and Hakim, who said that it meets the criteria of Bukhari and Muslim, and Dhahabi agreed. Albani also declared it sahih.

    Even if we accept Shaykh Dado’s interpretation with regards to the first hadith, which is a direct response to Umm Humayd, the second hadith speaks of women in general, and there seems to be no evidence to suggest that it has anything to do with Umm Humayd.

    Wallahu a`lam.

  19. Servant of God says:

    As-salam 3laium,

    Alhamdulillah! I need any reward I can get! You have to love ther diversity of opinions in Islam- for the very fact that there are differences of opinions it may save the ummah from punishment! Insha’Allah!

    May women including myself be more attached to Allah(Swt) house more then malls, places we work, school, and homes filled with; distractions, negligence, backbiting on the phone, tv, and heedlessness of God.

    May Allah(swt) send peace & blessings on the Prophet Muhammad(Saw) & his family. Ameen.

  20. Asif says:

    There is no doubt that a woman’s prayer in her house is better than praying in the mosque, as is indicated by the Sunnah of the Prophet PBUH. He said: “Do not prevent your women

    from going to the mosque, even though their houses are better for them.” Abu Dawud 567 and Jami Sagheer 13415.

    Narrated Abdullah ibn Masud RA that the Prophet PBUH said, “The dearest prayer of a woman to Allah is that which she prays in the darkest place of her home.” Ibn Khuzaimah 1691

    and authenticated by Albani in Sahih Targheeb wa Tarheeb 348

    In the above two hadith the Prophet PBUH give permission to women to pray in mosque but at the same time He PBUH discouraged women to pray in mosque when he said “their houses are

    better for them” and “dearest prayer of women to Allah is that performed in farthest place in home”. Although He PBUH has given the permission but He PBUH wants women to pray in

    their houses to avoid fitna and to get more reward.

    Narrated Abdullah bin Masud RA that the Prophet PBUH said: “A woman’s prayer in her house is better than her prayer in her courtyard, and her prayer in her bedroom is better than

    her prayer in her house.” Abu Dawud 570, Mustadrak al Hakim 757 also Jami Sagheer 7280, authenticated by Ibn Hajar Asqalani in Fath al bari (2/350)

    Narrated Umm Salma that the Prophet PBUH said,”The best mosque for women is in the qar (farthest point) of their Home” Musnad Ahmad 26584, Hasan by Al Aranout. also Ibn Khuzaimah

    and Mustadrak al Hakim

    Umm Humayd, the wife of Abu Humayd al-Saa‘idi reported that she came to the Prophet PBUH and said: “O Messenger of Allaah, I love to pray with you.” He said: “I know that you love

    to pray with me, but praying in your house is better for you than praying in your courtyard, and praying in your courtyard is better for you than praying in the mosque of your

    people, and praying in the mosque of your people is better for you than praying in my mosque.” So she ordered that a prayer-place be built for her in the furthest and darkest part

    of her house, and she always prayed there until she met Allaah (i.e., until she died). Musnad Ahmed 27135 Hasan by Al Aranout, Ibn Khuzaimah 1689, Majma Zawaid 2106, Ibn Hibban

    2217 and Sahih Targheeb wa Tarheeb 340.

    All the above ahadith states that women prayer in their houses are much better than which is prayed in the mosque, but it is permissible for women to offer their prayer in mosques

    also.

    Statements of the Companions on this Issue.

    The Companions also discouraged women to pray in mosques and they want women yo pray in their houses, the evidences are as follows.

    Amra, daughter of Abd al-Rahmin, reported: I heard ‘A’isha, the wife of the Prophet PBUH. say: If the Messenger of Allah PBUH had seen what new things the women have introduced

    (in their way of life) he would have definitely prevented them from going to the mosque, as the women of Bani Isra’il were prevented. Muslim :: Book 4 : Hadith 895

    Aisha RA was talking about the time in which She was present and she had formed such an opinion by seeing the women out there, so what about today, when Men and Women both dont

    have that faith, taqwa and character?

    Narrated Abdullah bin Masud, “In truth, women are nothing but Awrah (something to be hide). Indeed, a woman may go out of her house not wishing any mischief, but then Satan makes

    her the center of attention and says, “You do not pass by anybody except that you attracted him.” A woman puts on her cover and someone asks her, “Where are you off to?” and she

    says “I am going to visit a sick person,” or “I am going to attend the funeral prayer for a dead person,” or “I am going to pray in the mosque”; however, no woman ever worshipped

    her Lord the way she worships him in her home. Majma Zawaid No 2118 (2/46), Haythami said all narrators are trustworthy also authenticated by Albani in Targheeb wa Tarheeb (1/84)

    The statement, “No women ever worshipped her Lord the way she worships him in her home” is evident that women should pray in their homes to achieve better reward and mercy from

    Allah.

    Narrated Abu Amr Al Shaibani that he saw Abdullah ibn Masud put the women out of the mosque at friday prayer saying to them, “Go back to your homes that is better for you.” Majma

    Zawaid 2119 (2/47), Haythami said narrators are utterly reliable.

    This action of Ibn Masud is also evident that women should offer their prayers in their homes.

    Many people will say that this is a particular action/advice of Ibn Masud RA so we are not obliged to follow him in this regard. For these people I would like to say that our

    Prophet PBUH commanded this Ummah to follow the advice of Ibn Masud RA and also the Prophet PBUH authenticates in advance with which Ibn Masud RA pleased with for this Ummah, the

    hadith in support are quoted below.

    The Prophet PBUH said, “Stick to the advice of Ibn Masud” Tirmidhi 3831
    The Prophet PBUH said, “what Ibn Mas’ud narrates to you confirm that” Tirmidhi 3799.
    The Prophet PBUH said, “I am pleased for my Ummah with what Ibn Masud is pleased with for it”. Mustadrak al Hakim 5387 also Silsilah sahiha 1225.

    So instead of taking our religion from present days scholars, it is better to refer back to such a high rank Companions like Aisha Ra and Abdullah Ibn Masud RA as said by Ibn

    Sireen That “This Knowledge is religion, so be careful as to whom you take your religion from”. (Narrated by Imam Muslim in the Introduction of Sahih Muslim) also Mishkat ul

    Masabih 273, Sahih by Albani

    So as per the Sunnah of the Messenger of Allah PBUH and the Sunnah of His Companions we can permit women going to mosques but at the same time we should discouraged them going to

    mosque and tell them that their houses are better for them.

    And logically also all the deeds or Worship which we Muslims do is to get reward from Allah, so if our Prophet PBUH recommended something which is “better” for women, then women

    should opt this option instead of choosing the option which is “not better”.

    And Allah Knows Best.

  21. S says:

    Salam Alaikum Ustadh Suhaib,

    Min fadhlik, the Arabic for: “Actions speak louder than words” and “If actions contradict words, the actions are given preference.”

  22. Abu Ahmad says:

    Jazak Allah Ya Ustadh! I was under the impression that none would answer my humble yet foolish question.

  23. Abu Ahmad says:

    And I love the tone of this discussion. I remember reading on this very blog; “The scholars difference of opinion is a mercy on us.”

  24. ISMAEEL MARIKAR says:

    Sheikh Albani (رحمه الله) said in “Silsilat al-Ahadith ad-Da’eefah” ( no. 58 ) :

    ” Disagreement among my ummah is a mercy ”

    (BASELESS) The muhadditheen have tried to find an isnaad for it but have not found one, to the extent that Suyooti said in his “al-Jaami’ as-Sagheer” : ” Perhaps it was collected in one of the books of the huffaadh which did not reach us ” !

    This suggestion is very far-fetched. since it would mean that some of the sayings of the Prophet (صلّى الله عليه وسلّم) have been lost to the ummah forever, something which is not permissable for a Muslim to believe

  25. UmmIbraheem says:

    As salaamu ‘alaykum wa rahmatullah,

    All of the hadith above show that women are ALLOWED to go to the masjid and that they should not be prevented, but which hadith shows that they are rewarded more for praying at the masjid or that they are encouraged to pray at the masjid?

    Also, how do we reconcile this opinion with the hadith that have been quoted above that say that the best place for a woman is to pray at home?

    Please don’t take offense to my questions, anyone :) I know it’s hard to tell online, but I’m sincerely asking, as this is against everything I have been taught by my mother growing up: that the best place for a woman is to pray at home. I was also also taught the hadith of not PREVENTING women from the masjid and my mother took me to the masjid regularly growing up. just clarifying :)

    Also, just a personal note: for mothers like me, it is extremely difficult to go to the masjid on a regular basis with little babies and it would be a great cause of sadness to find out that I would get more ajr in the masjid :(

    May Allah keep us all steadfast and on the straight path. I have to say that i love the tone and respectfulness of everyone on this forum.

  26. ISMAEEL MARIKAR says:

    Wa alaikumus salam wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu.
    In fiqh, there is ‘Aam” and “Khaas”
    That is the General and the Specific.
    The hadith, giving permission to women to go to masjid is the “‘Aam”
    The hadith, which specifically states that the prayer of a woman, in her house in her room in a corner is the “Khaas”.
    This was the response to a woman, who told the Prophet sallallahu alaihi wa sallam, that she liked to pray in his masjid with him.Not any masjid on the planet.
    I do not have to tell you that a prayer in Masjid an Nabawi is 1000 times in any other masjid, except the Haram in Makkah which is 100,000..
    As you say it is difficult for you with kids, well
    Allah and His Messenger sallallahu alihi wa sallam,
    knew this and they have made it easy.
    In short, you will get the reward of praying in the masjid, while praying at home, in obedience to the
    Prophet sallalahu alaihi wa sallam.Obeying him is
    like obeying Allah.
    He never spoke of his own,;hadith too is “wahy”
    Well that is another long subject.I hope it is clear.
    May allah keep us steadfast on strict adherence to the Quran and sunnah and not give into our whims and desires.

  27. Laila says:

    Ismaeel
    The aam and khas do not apply here.
    The permission exists in the cited texts for women to go to mosques – nothing more, nothing less.
    The hadith about preference is not mentioned in those texts so those texts cannot be aam on that subject.
    To limit a text you need evidence – you have none – so the only conclusion that can be drawn is that it is preferable for women to pray at home and it is absurd to suggest it was specifically for any given woman.

  28. ENGR.ISMAEEL MARIKAR says:

    SISTER LAILA,
    THE PROPHET S.A.W.S. SAID DO NOT PREVENT YOUR WOMEN FROM GOING TO MASJID. BUT THEN HE HAS SAID THAT THE PRAYER OF A WOMAN IN THE HOME IS BETTER.
    WHICH IS BETTER ?
    I SIMPLY CANNOT UNDERSTAND WHY THERE IS SO MUCH DEBATE.
    ALLAH KNOWS BEST

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