The Awrah of the Muslim Woman in front of a non-Muslim Woman

The Awrah (parts that must be covered) of the Muslim Woman in front of a non-Muslim Woman

Shaykh Abdul Azeez ibn Baaz rahimahullaah was asked the following question:

Q: What is the most a Muslim woman can uncover in front of the disbelieving woman, for example? And is it correct that she cannot uncover except her face and hands?

A: What is correct is that a woman can uncover in front of another woman whether she was a Muslim or a disbeliever. This is what is correct – as long as it is above the navel and below the knee.

As for that which is between the navel and the knee, then it is `awrah (should be covered) for everybody, for all women; whether she was a Muslim or non-Muslim, and whether close (relative) or far (non-related); between the navel and the knee (is `awrah). Just as the `awrah (that which should be covered) of the men in the company of other men is between the navel and the knee.

So the woman can see of another woman her chest, and her head, and her calf, and the like of that; there is no problem with this – as a man sees from another man his chest, and his calf, and his head and it’s like.

As for the saying of some of the people of knowledge that the disbelieving women are not to be uncovered in front of, this is a weak saying that some of the people of knowledge hold. They said she (the disbelieving woman) is like the man, due to His saying – He the Most High:

“Or their women.” [24:31];

However that which is more correct is that the intent behind “Their women” is: women in general – whether they be Muslim women or disbelieving women. There is no harm in Muslim women showing off their adornment to them, this is what is correct.

And the Jewish women used to live in Madeenah in the time of the Prophet sallAllaahu `alaihi wa sallam; and likewise the idolaters, they would enter upon the wives of the Prophet sallAllaahu `alaihi wa sallam due to a need they had, so it is not recorded that they would cover from them – may Allaah be pleased with them.

And they were the most fearful and dutiful of people to Allaah, the wives of the Prophet were the most fearful and dutiful of people to Allaah, and they were the best of women, and with this – from what has reached us – they did not used to cover up for those that would enter upon them from the Buddhist women and other women.

In conclusion, there is no harm in a woman uncovering in front of a disbelieving woman, like she would in front of a Muslim woman. And she does not have to cover herself up from the disbelieving women, this is what is correct.

[Source: www.binbaz.org.sa/mat/20010 ]

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3 Responses to The Awrah of the Muslim Woman in front of a non-Muslim Woman

  1. Umm Halima says:

    Assalamalaikum,

    JazakAllah Khair for putting up the Shaykh’s fatawa.

    To prevent anyone taking the Shaykh’s words out of context….. Am I correct to assume that the Shaykh is not saying here, that women can sit at home or go and visit other women in their homes and (as long there are no males present and only women are present in the sittings) that they can all be in a state of undress i.e. by removing their upper garments only to the point of being completely nude (topless) – and so as long the area between the navel to knee is still covered then there is no problem in them sitting amongst themselves like this ? I am sure the Shaykh is not saying this – can you clarify ?

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