It is recommended for women to pray taraaweeh in the mosque

Q: “Is it best for a woman to perform the night prayer in Ramadhaan (taraaweeh) in her house or at the mosque?”

Shaikh al-Albaani: “Particularly for the night prayer in Ramadhaan, the best thing is what the righteous believing women of the Righteous Predecessors (Salaf as-Saalih) used to do, which is performing it with the congregation of Muslims in the mosques, as opposed to the rest of the months in which case ‘Their houses are better for them’ as the Prophet ﷺ said.”

Q: “So it is recommended (mustahabb) for a woman, as you said, to go out to pray taraaweeh?”

Shaikh al-Albaani: “Didn’t you get the answer to this question already?

Q: “Yes but just to confirm.”

Shaikh al-Albaani: “Yes it is as you said. And it is even more recommended for the 27th night.”

[al-fataawaa al-muhimmah 431 / alalbaany.com]

Friday ghusl is not obligatory upon a woman

Q: “Is the Friday bath (ghusl) obligatory upon a woman?”

Shaikh al-Albaani:

“If  the Friday prayer fundamentally is not obligatory upon her, then how can the subsidiary issue (the bath) be obligatory when the fundamental (the prayer) isn’t?”[1]

[1] Shaikh Bin Baaz, Shaikh Ibn al-`Uthaimeen and Shaikh Fawzaan likewise said that the Friday bath is specifically for men – those who must attend the Friday prayer – not women.

[al-haawee min fataawaa ash-shaikh al-albaani 447 / asaheeha translations]

It is best for a woman to pray in the mosque if there is a beneficial class or exhortation

Q: “Is it best for a woman to pray in her house or in a mosque near her house?”

Shaikh al-Albaani:

“It is best for her to pray in her house, unless there is a class or exhortation in the mosque from which the woman would benefit, then here the ruling switches: it becomes best for her to pray in the mosque. But if there is just prayer (in the mosque), then (her praying) in the house is better. Meaning, if there isn’t anything in the mosque except the congregational prayer, then her praying in her house is better for her than her praying in her mosque – contrary to if there was a class or exhortation in the mosque, then her praying in the mosque is better for her.”

[silsilat ul-hudaa wa nnoor 4/2 / asaheeha translations]

It is not permissible for a woman to pray with her feet uncovered

Q: “Should a woman cover her feet when she prays?”

Shaikh al-Albaani:

It is not permissible for her to pray with her feet uncovered, indeed it is not permissible for her to walk in the streets with her feet uncovered, because the feet are part of a woman’s `awrah based on Allaah’s عز وجل Statement: {And let them not stamp their feet to make known what they conceal of their adornment}.[1] The woman during the Days of Ignorance used to wear what is known in the Arabic language as khalkhaal (anklet), meaning a bracelet with small bells. So when the woman walked, she – in order to turn the men’s attention to her – would strike the ground with her feet so the anklet would make a noise and the men would hear that; and such was due to shaitaan’s whisperings to her.

This means that the feet used to be covered. Because of what? Because of the jilbaab that the women were commanded to cast down from over their heads, according to Allaah’s Statement: {O Prophet! Tell your wives and your daughters and the women of the believers to draw their outer garments  (jilbaabs) close upon themselves}.[2] And it is mentioned in the authentic hadeeth that the Prophet ﷺ said one day during a gathering in which there were also women: ‘Whoever drags his garment out of pride, Allaah عز وجل will not look at him on the Day of Resurrection.’ One of the women said: ‘O Messenger of Allaah, then our feet will be exposed.’ He ﷺ said: ‘let the women lengthen (their garments) by a hand-span.’ She said: ‘Then a wind will come and uncover (their feet).’ He ﷺ said: ‘let them add another hand-span, i.e. (a total of) one cubit, and not go beyond that.’[3] [4]

In this manner, the jilbaab of the Muslim woman – at the time of the revelation of the above-mentioned verse: {to draw their outer garments (jilbaabs) close upon themselves} – used to cover the feet since the socks that are widespread nowadays among both women and men were not widespread at that time. The woman used to cover her shins and feet with the long jilbaab that resembles the `abaa.ah. Therefore it is not permissible for a Muslim woman to uncover her feet while she is on the street, and it is even more impermissible for her to pray with her feet uncovered.”


[1] Surat un-Noor 24:31
[2] Surat ul-Ahzaab 33:59
[3] the Shaikh mentioned the general meaning, not the exact wording, of the woman’s speech
[4] Saheeh at-Tirmidhi 1731, Saheeh Abi Daawood 4119

[silsilat ul-hudaa wa nnoor 697/3-4 / asaheeha translations]

A woman’s aameen, adhaan & iqaamah when praying with other women

Q: “Does a woman raise her voice when saying ‘aameen’ during prayer, and does she also give the adhaan and iqaamah?”

Shaikh al-Albaani:

If she is praying with women, then yes she raises her voice when saying ‘aameen,’ but if she is praying with men who are not her mahram, then no. Because I do not say that the voice of a woman is `awrah, as many say, since the Mothers of the believers and the wives of the Companions from the early times used to speak and discuss with men. And oftentimes the woman would come to the Prophet ﷺ and ask him something in front of the men, and he ﷺ would answer her question. But (here), it is not from the etiquette of a woman to raise her voice when reciting the Qur.aan. We are often asked if it is permissible for a woman – when she is learning the recitation from a Shaikh, a Muqri – to repeat the recitation to him so that he may correct her. The answer is no. Although she learns, her learning is restricted to listening only, like the women of all the Companions learned from the Messenger of Allaah ﷺ by listening to his recitation during prayer or outside of prayer.

If a woman prays with women while she is the imaam, she raises her voice and the women behind her also raise their voices. That is due to his ﷺ statement: ‘Indeed women are the counterparts of men’[1] i.e. every ruling in which the men are being addressed, the women are also included in this address, except that which is made an exception. For example, it is best for a woman, in other than the taraaweeh prayer – please pay attention – in other than the taraaweeh prayer, to pray in her house, whereas it is obligatory upon a man to pray the five prayers in the masjid with the congregation. So here, the woman is not like the man. But the fundamental principle is as he ﷺ said: ‘Indeed women are the counterparts of men.’

So if a woman leads women in prayer as an imaam, she does just as a man would do as an imaam. Firstly: she raises her voice when reciting and when saying ‘aameen,’ and the women behind her also raise their voices when saying ‘aameen.’ Secondly: not only does the woman lead women in prayer as an imaam, indeed she gives the adhaan and iqaamah too. Why? Because of the previous hadeeth: ‘Indeed women are the counterparts of men.’ Moreover, Aa.ishah – the Mother of the believers and the foremost of the Mothers of the believers in fiqh, knowledge and da`wah, may Allaah bless her and her father – used to give the adhaan and iqaamah when she led women in prayer as an imaam.

And here I would like to draw your attention to something that wasn’t asked about: the woman here is also different from the man as she does not step up before the women’s row, but rather she stands in the middle as if she is one of those in the row. She does not step up before them. There is text regarding this also, and thus a woman in this case is not included in the generality of his ﷺ statement: ‘Indeed women are the counterparts of men.’”


[1] Silsilat ul-Ahaadeeth is-Saheehah 2863

[silsilat ul-hudaa wa nnoor  697/3 / asaheeha translations]