Isaal-e-Sawab through Recitation of the Quran Q4.

I would like to know that if we read Quran and ask Allah to send sawab to all Muslims and my relatives including my parents who are no more, will the sawab only go to my parents or to all the rest too ? Abdulla Aminuddin, aminuddin@sancharnet.in A4. It is Bid'ah (innovation) to recite the Qur'an for Isaal-eSawab of those who have passed away, regardless whether the deceased is your parent or relative. There is no evidence supporting this practice in the authentic sources of Islam, in the Seerah of the Prophet (Pbuh) or the life of his Companions. Didn't deaths occur during the time of the companions ? Why then, we do not find any such evidence from their lives ? All those things that benefit the living and the dead have already been shown by the Prophet (Pbuh), as Deen has been completed. Therefore, it is inappropriate to innovate anything in the religion. Narrated Aisha (R.A.): Allah's Messenger (Pbuh) said, "If somebody innovates something which is not present in our religion, then that thing will be rejected."(Sahih Bukhari, Vol. 3, Hadith No. 2697 & Sahih Muslim, Vol. 3, Hadith No. 4266). However it is allowed to pray for the deceased and give charity for him, as there is no difference of opinion in this regard. Q6. In the light of the teaching of the Qur'an and the Sunnah, is it a correct Islamic practice to visit graveyards on the night of Shab-e-baraat? please narrate the Hadith related to this night. M. A. Khan, Bhopal

A6. Giving significance to the night of 15th Sha'ban, visiting graveyards, doing extra Ibaadah (worship) and offering extra Nawaafil Salaah with the intention of specifically doing so on the occasion of 15th Sha'ban, having illuminations, considering it to be the Eid of the dead and keeping awake for the whole night of 15th Sha'ban and encouraging others to do the same -- all these are Bid'ah (innovation) . The prophet (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam)and the Sahaabah never did so nor commanded the muslims to do so. We don't find any evidence of such things in the entire authentic Seerah of the Prophet(Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) and his companions. According to Allamah Ibn Rajab Abu Bakr Turtoshi, Ibn Wazzah Qurtubi, Suyuti, Shokani etc. all the Ahadith pertaining to the subject are weak and unacceptable. The Hadith that is generally quoted to support the practices done on the night of 15th Sha'ban is Zaif (weak) according to Muhaddiseen (the scholars of Ahadith) and is not to be put into practice. Narrated Aisha (R.A.), I missed Allah's Messenger (peace be upon him) during the night and found him in al-Baqi'. He said: Were you afraid that Allah and His Messenger would deal unjustly with you? I said: Allah's Messenger , I thought that you had gone to some of your other wives. He (the prophet) said: Verily Allah, the Exalted and Glorious, comes down to the heaven of the world in the middle night of Sha'ban and forgives sins even more abundant than the hair of the goats of Kalb. (Tirmidhi, Hadith No. 739; Sunan Ibn-I-Majah, Hadith No. 1389; Ahmad Vol. 6, 238)

According to Imam Bukhari and Tirmidhi, the above mentioned Hadith has a broken chain of narrators in two places, and therefore it is weak. Allamah Ibnul Arabi (543H), in his commentary of Sunan -At-Tirmidhi, titled 'ArizatulAhwazi', Vol 3, Pg No. 216 adds: '....further, in it Hajjaj Ibn Artaat is not reliable.' However, it is established that the Prophet (pbuh) did visit the Baqi graveyard once, as Allah had commanded him and he prayed for Ahle-Baqi (the people of Baqi), but the exact night of this event is not known, as there is no clear proof in this regard. The prophet had done this by the commandment of Allah (swt), therefore the Prophet was an exception to this act. Aisha (R.A.) says that the Prophet (pbuh) said: "Gabriel came to me and said; Your Rabb commands you to go to the graveyard of Baqi and seek forgiveness for them". (Sahih Muslim, Hadith No. 2256) It is permissible for men to visit graveyard whenever they wish and pray for the dead, however it is not permissible to fix a specific day or night for the purpose and consider it to be of a special virtue unless we find any proof for doing so from the Qur'an or the authentic Ahadith. Allamah Ibnul Arabi writes: "There is no reliable Hadith regarding the 15th of Sha'ban. Although certain commentators insist that the verse from Surah Dukhan, chapter 44, verse 4: 'In that (night) is made distinct every affair of wisdom', refer to 15th of Sha'ban, but this is not true, as Allah did not reveal the Qur'an in Sha'ban. The Qur'an was revealed in Ramadan, as mentioned in Surah Baqarah, chapter 2, verse 185, and this can only be statement of a person who transgresses the book of Allah (swt) and is careless of his word". (Arizatul Ahwazi, Vol. 3, Page No. 217)

According to Hadith of Sahih Muslim, Vol. 2, Hadith No. 1885: ".. Most evil affairs are their innovations, and every innovation is an error..." So Muslims should beware of and steer clear of all innovation and bid'ah. Q9. Are menstruating women permitted to recite Surah Fatiha, Ikhlaas, Falak, Nas and Ayatul Kursi at night before going to sleep ? Can menstruating women touch and read the Qur'an ? Does this word in the Qur'an 'Mutahhareen' (none can touch except those who are clean) relate to the Qur'an or to the Tablet Preserved (Lauh-a-Mehfuz) ? Is one allowed to touch Qur'an without wudhu ? Please explain with reference to Hadith. Nishat Bare <nishat_bare@rediffmail.com> A9. The Glorious Qur'an says : "That this is indeed a Qur'an most honorable in a book well guarded which none shall touch but those who are clean : A Revelation from the Lord of the Worlds." (Surah Al-Waqi'a, 56:77-80) The Kitabim Maknoon mentioned in the above mentioned verse does not refer to the holy Qur'an in the book form, which we have, and the word Mutahhareen does not merely refer to cleanliness of the body. Kitabim Maknoon means a book well guarded or a protected book. This word refers to Lauh-e-Mahfooz in heaven, which is also mentioned in the following verse "Nay this is a Glorious Qur'an (Inscribed) in a Tablet Preserved!" (Surah AlBuruj, 85:21 & 22) Mutahhareen does not refer to mere body cleanliness but also refers to those who do not have any uncleanliness or impurity like sin and evil, thus referring to the angels.

According to the commentary of Tabari, Mutahhareen means the angels. According to Ibne Hazam, who has discussed the subject in detail, there are no pre-requisites or conditions for touching the Qur'an. Although all the scholars, of all different schools of thought, agree upon it without any difference of opinion that it is preferable to be in wudhu before touching the Qur'an, however, according to Ibne Hazam there is not a single verse of the Qur'an or the authentic hadith saying that being in wudhu is compulsory. Ibne Abbas, Sho'bi, Zahhaq, Zaid bin Ali, Muayyid Billaah, Dawood, Ibne Hazam and Hammad bin Sulaiman are of the opinion that Qur'an can be touched without performing wudhu. (Fiqh-us-Sunnah, As Saiyid Saabiq, 1.52) Regarding the hadith of Muwatta Malik which is often quoted by certain scholars to back up their claims that one should be in wudhu before touching the Qur'an, this hadith narration besides being Mursal, has the Arabic word Taahirun in it, which according to Ibne Katheer, Zamakhshari & others, does not necessarily mean being with wudhu but simply means 'pure', that is, one should not be in ceremonial impurity or menstruation. Scholars of different schools of thought differ on the issue of whether one should compulsorily be in a state of wudhu while touching the Qur'an. According to Hanafi school of thought, one cannot touch the Qur'an without wudhu, but if one uses a piece of cloth or sheet then he can touch it. Some Hanafi Scholars insist that the cover of the Qur'an itself serves as a covering sheet or cloth, while the others believe that one can touch the Qur'an but not the Arabic text within the Qur'an. Amongst the Shafia scholars, some say

that one cannot touch the Qur'an without wudhu, despite using covering sheet. Malikis too believe in some what the same. However, they allow touching the Qur'an without wudhu for students and teachers of the Qur'an. It is permissible for a menstruating woman to recite the Qur'an without touching it. Similarly, she can very well recite the portions of the Qur'an, which she does regularly, or even the Ahadith of the prophet (pbuh) . However she shouldn't touch the Qur'an with her hands. Ibne Majah narrates a hadith from Abdullah Ibne Umar (R.A.) that a man in a state of ceremonial impurity, and a menstruating lady should not recite anything from the Qur'an, but this hadith is weak. Allama Ibne Hajr and Allama Ibnul Mulaqqin have rated the hadith as weak in their books At-Talkheesal Habeer, Vol. 1, pg. no. 138, hadith no. 183 & Khulasatul Badrul Muneer, vol. 1, pg. no. 60, hadith no. 170, respectively. However, if a menstruating woman, or a woman with postpartum impurity, wishes to read the Qur'an, then she may use some sheet or cloth while touching the Qur'an so that her hands do not have direct contact with the Qur'an. According to Maliki school of thought, while doing hifz of the Qur'an, a man in spite of being in ceremonial impurity or a woman in her menstruation, can touch the Qur'an so that they do not forget the portions of the Qur'an memorised by them. And Allah knows best. Which School of Thought Should A Muslim Follow?

Q13. There are four schools of thoughts and we can follow any one of them. Is it permissible to follow two schools of thought to suit the situation ? For example, the Shafi school of thought considers 2.25 pm as the time for Asr prayers in our town while the Hanafi school of thought has fixed time at 3.08. So can we follow any of these two timings to suit our necessity ? M. A. Hazarika, Seujpur, Dibrugarh 1. Muslims should be united Muslims today, are divided amongst themselves. Such divisions are not endorsed by Islam. Islam believes in fostering unity amongst its followers. The Glorious Qur’an says: “And hold fast, altogether, by the rope Which Allah (stretches out for you), and be not divided among yourselves.” [AlQur’an 3:103] Which is the rope of Allah that is being referred to in this verse? It is the Glorious Qur’an. The Glorious Qur’an is the rope of Allah which all Muslims should hold fast together. There is double emphasis in this verse. Beside saying ‘hold fast all together’ it also says, ‘be not divided’. The Qur’an further says, “Obey Allah, and obey the Messenger” [Al-Qur’an 4:59] All the Muslims should follow the Qur’an and authentic Ahadith and ensure that they are not divided among themselves. 2. It is prohibited to make divisions in Islam. The Glorious Qur’an says:

“As for those who divide Their religion and break up Into sects, you have no part in them in the least: Their affair is with Allah: He will in the end tell them the truth of all that they did.” [Al-Qur’an 6:159] In this verse Allah (swt) says that one should disassociate oneself from those who divide their religion and break it up into sects. But when one asks a Muslim, “who are you?” the common answer is either ‘I am a Hanafi or Shafi or Maliki or Hanbali. Some call themselves ‘Ahle-Hadith’. 3. Four Schools of Thoughts The Islamic world has produced several learned Islamic scholars (Imams), but out of these, four became more famous and their teachings spread in different parts of the world. It is a misconception that a Muslim should follow any one of these four schools of thoughts i.e. Hanafi, Shafi, Hanbali or Maliki. There is no proof whatsoever in the Qur’an or any authentic Hadith that a Muslim should only follow one of these four Imams. 4. Respect all the Great Scholars of Islam. We must respect all the great scholars of Islam, including the four Imaams, Imam Abu Hanifa, Imam Shafi, Imam Hanbal and Imam Malik (may Allah be pleased with them all). They were great scholars and may Allah reward them for their research and hard work. One can have no objection if someone agrees with the view and research of any one or more from these four great scholars of Islam. 5. All Four Imam said follow the Qur’an and Sunnah.

All the four great Imams said that if any of their Fatwas or teachings contradict Allah’s word, i.e. the Qur’an, or the sayings of the Prophet (pbuh) i.e. authentic Hadith, then that particulars Fatwa of theirs should be rejected, and the Sunnah of the Prophet should be followed. Refer: a. Hanifa) b. Shafi) c. Malik) d. Eeqaadh al-Himam (Imam Hanbal) To give you an example in this context – Imam shafi said that when a women touches a man who is in a state of wudhu, the wudhu of the man breaks. However, this ruling of Imam Shafi contradicts the authentic saying of the Prophet. Narrated Aisha The Prophet (may peace be upon him) kissed one of his wives and went out for saying prayer. He did not perform ablution. (Sunan Abu Dawood Vol. 1 Chapter No. 70 Hadith No. 179) Thus this particular teaching of Imam Shafi contradicts the authentic saying of the Prophet. So I reject this specific ruling of Imam Shafi who himself said , “ If I say something, then compare it to the Book of Allah and the Sunnah of His messenger and if it agrees to them, then accept it and that which goes against them, then reject it and throw my saying against the wall” – This is a saying of ash-Shafi’eerahimaullah. See Al-Majmoo’ of an-Nawawee (1/63). Jaami ‘Bayan al-Ilm, Ibn Abdul-Barr (Imam Al-Majmoo’ of an-Nawawee (1/63) (Imam Eeqaadh al-Himam, Al Fulaanee (Imam Abu

Thus by rejecting this particular teaching of Imam Shafi which contradicts the authentic Hadith, I am practically a better follower of Imam Shafi than those who call themselves ‘Shafi’. Similarly in practice, I claim to be a better follower of Imam Abu Hanifa than those who call themselves ‘Hanafi’. I claim to be a better follower of Imam Hanbal than those who call themselves ‘Hanbali’. I claim to be a better follower of Imam Malik than those who call themselves ‘Maliki”. If being a ‘Ahle-Hadith’ means following Qur’an and authentic Hadith then I claim to be a better follower of the Qur’an and authentic Hadith than those who call themselves ‘ AhleHadith’. All these are mere labels (Hanafi, Shafi, Hanbali, Maliki, Ahle-Hadith) that are not endorsed by the Qur’an or the Sahih Ahadith. The only label or title given by the Qur’an and the Sahih Ahadith is MUSLIM. 6. All the Groups have sub divisions I personally have no objection if someone calls himself Hanafi, Shafi, Hanbali, Maliki or Ahle Hadith. People give different labels to themselves to identify which set of teachings they prefer to follow and to disassociate themselves from those people who follow wrong practices. From history we come to know that all the labels given to different groups, at a later stage the people from that group themselves did not follow their teachings and made new sub-groups. Therefore in all the groups you find a subdivision. But as far as giving a label to identify what a person practices in Islam is concerned, there can not be better label than what Allah (swt) has given i.e. a Muslim.

7. Our Prophet was a Muslim “Who was our beloved Prophet (pbuh)? Was he a Hanafi or a Shafi, or a Hanbali or a Maliki ?” No! He was a Muslim, like all the other Prophets and Messengers of Allah before him. It is mentioned in chapter 3 verse 52 of Al-Qur’an that Jesus (pbuh) was a Muslim. Further , in chapter 3 verse 67, Al-Qur’an says that Ibrahim (pbuh) was not a Jew or a Christian but was a Muslim. 8. Qur’an says call yourselves Muslims There is no Qur’anic verse or any authentic Hadith that says you should call yourselves Hanafi, Shafi, Hanbali, Maliki or Ahle Hadith. If anyone poses a Muslim the question who are you, he should say “I am a Muslim, not a Hanafi or a Shafi or a AhleHadith”. In Surah Fussilat chapter 41 verse 33 Allah (swt) says: “Who is better in speech than one who calls (men) to Allah, works righteousness, and says, ‘I am of those Who bow in Islam (Muslim)?’ “[Al-Qur’an 24:33] The Qur’an instructs, “Say: I am of those who bow in Islam”. In other words, say, “I am a Muslim”. The Prophet (pbuh) dictated letters to non-Muslim kings and rulers inviting them to accept Islam. In these letters he mentioned the verse of the Qur’an from Surah Al Imran chapter 3 verse 64: Say ye: “Bear witness that we (at least) are Muslims (submitting to Allah’s Will).”[Al-Qur’an 3:64] 9. Lip Service Muslims

Allah knew that even in the Muslim Ummah there will be many people who claim to be Muslims (i.e. claim to submit their will to Allah) but practically will not follow Allah’s commands. Allah refers to such people in the Qur’an as lip service Believers (Al Qur’an 5:41). Thus we can conclude that those who claim to be Muslims but do not follow Qur’an and Sunnah are Lip-Service Muslims. Those who follow the Qur’an and authentic Hadith should not change their label, and stick to the best label given by Allah (swt) i.e. Muslim and which the Prophet also called himself. 10. The Prophet had said that there would be 73 sects. Some may argue by quoting the Hadith of our beloved Prophet, from Sunan Abu Dawood Hadith No. 4579. In this Hadith the Prophet (pbuh) is reported to have said, “My community will split up into seventy-three sects.” This hadith reports that the prophet predicted the emergence of seventy-three sects. He did not say that Muslims should be active in dividing themselves into sects. The Glorious Qur’an commands us not to create sects. Those who follow the teachings of the Qur’an and Sahih Hadith, and do not create sects are the people who are on the true path. According to Tirmidhi Hadith No. 171, the prophet (pbuh) is reported to have said, “My Ummah will be fragmented into seventy three sects, and all of them will be in Hell fire except one sect.” The companions asked Allah’s messenger which group that would be. Where upon he replied, “It is the one to which I and my companions belong”. The Glorious Qur’an mentions in several verses, “Obey Allah and obey His Messenger”. A true Muslim should only follow

the Glorious Qur’an and the Sahih Hadith. He can agree with the views of any scholar as long as they conform to the teachings of the Qur’an and Sahih Hadith. If such views go against the Word of Allah, or the Sunnah of His Prophet, then they carry no weight, regardless of how learned the scholar might be. A true Muslim will not follow any ruling or teaching of any great scholar of Islam if that particular ruling or teaching contradicts the Qur’an and Saheeh Hadith. Thus, the only school of thought that a Muslim should follow, is that of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh). The only Madhab that a Muslim should follow, is the Madhab of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh). And Allah knows the Best. 11. Time for Asr Salah As far as your specific query regarding the timing of Asr Salah is concerned, it is mentioned in Sunan Abu Dawood Vol. 1 Chapter No. 147 Hadith No. 393, Narrrated Abdullah Ibn Abbas The Messenger of Allah (pbuh) said : Gabriel (pbuh) …. prayed the Asr Salah with me when shadow of everything was as long as itself….. On the following day he prayed the Asr Prayer with me when his shadow was twice as long as himself….. Then turning to me he said : Muhammad, this is the time observed by the prophets before you, and the time is anywhere between these two times. It is mentioned in Sunan Abu Dawood Volume No. 1 Chapter No. 158 Hadith No. 426, Umm Farwah said : The Apostle of Allah (pbuh) was asked : Which of the actions is best ? He replied: Observing prayer early in its period. Therefore it is preferable to pray early (i.e. at the beginning of the prescribed period for Salaah).

For all the Salaah except Isha, the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) said it is preferable to pray early. Narrated Saiyar bin Salama : The Prophet loved to delay the Isha… and he disliked sleeping before it and speaking after it. (Sahih Al-Bukhari Vol. 1 Hadith No. 522) However, if a person is unable to pray at the early hour, it is permitted to pray at any time within the prescribed period for Salaah. Only If all the Muslims read the Qur’an with understanding and adhere to Sahih Hadith, Insha-Allah most of these differences would be solved and we could be one united Muslim Ummah. And Allah Knows the Best. Muslim scholars differ amongst themselves on the issue of the obligatory duty (or otherwise) of veiling of the face by Muslim women. In Islam, rules and regulations and the do's and don'ts are derived from the word of Allah, i.e. the Glorious Qur'an and the teachings of the Messenger of Allah, i.e. the authentic Ahadith. Haroon Abdullah New Delhi "O you who believe! Obey Allah and obey the Messenger and those charged with authority among you. If you differ in anything among yourselves, refer it to Allah and His Messenger if you do believe in Allah and the Last Day: that is best and most suitable for final determination." (Al-Qur'an 4:59)

As mentioned in the verse quoted above, when people in authority, the rulers, leaders, imams and scholars differ amongst themselves, our Creator instructs us to look into the Qur'an and the authentic Ahadith for guidance. The legitimacy, relevance and accuracy of the reasons and evidence provided by these people should be evaluated in the light of the Qur'an and the Sunnah. However, it should be borne in mind that infallibility belongs to Allah alone and a scholar, being a human, can make an error of judgement. There is no clear-cut authentic hadith to the effect of making the face veil obligatory. Those scholars, who insist that covering the face is obligatory for Muslim women, interpret 'al-idnaa' in the verse of the jilbaab (Al-Qur'an: 33:59) to mean, "covering the face". This interpretation is erroneous because the basic meaning of the word in Arabic is "to come close", as the well-known scholar, ar-Raaghib alAsbahaanee mentions in his authoritative dictionary 'alMufradaat'. Some people claim that jilbaab is "a garment which covers the face". This too is a misinterpretation as it is contrary to the interpretation of the leading scholars of past and present as well, who define jilbaab as a garment which women drape over their head scarves (khimaar). Some people claim that the khimaar (headscarf) in Al-Qur'an 24:31 covers the head and the face, whereas linguistically the word only means a head covering. The Prophet (pbuh) is reported to have said "Allah does not accept the prayer of a woman who has reached puberty unless she wears a khimaar". (Sunan Abu Dawood, vol. 1, hadith No. 641) However, no scholar insists on covering the face in Salaah for women based on the hadith quoted above, which further substantiates that khimaar does not mean covering the face.

Shaykh Naasiruddeen al-Albaanee, one of the foremost scholars of recent times has clarified in detail, the errors made by these scholars who insist on the obligatory nature of the face veil in his books ar-Radd al-Mufhim & Jilbaab alMar'ah al-Muslimah (3rd edition, 1996, al-Maktabah alIslaamiyyah). Likewise, other scholars like Ibn Muflih alHambalee, an-Nawawee, al-Qaadee 'Iyaad are too of the opinion that covering the face is not obligatory. As stated earlier, that there is not a single authentic hadith that makes covering the face obligatory. On the other hand, we find several ahadith which prove that covering the face is not compulsory in Islam. For instance, once while the prophet was admonishing and preaching to a group of women after having admonished the men on the Id day, "...a woman having a dark spot on her cheek stood up..." seeking clarification on the subject the prophet was discussing. (Sahih Muslim, Vol. 2, Hadith No. 1926) It is understood from the above-mentioned hadith that the woman having interaction with the prophet was not covering her face nor did the prophet command her to do so. It is incumbent upon every Muslim to enjoin right and forbid wrong, as Allah instructed us in the Glorious Qur'an. Thus we cannot expect the prophet, on whom the Qur'an was revealed, to let the woman keep her face uncovered after having known the obligation of covering the face. Narrated Ata bin Abi Rabah (R.A.) Ibn 'Abbas said to me, "Shall I show you a woman of the people of Paradise?" I said, "Yes." He said, "This black lady came to the Prophet and said..." (Sahih Bukhari, Vol. 7, Hadith No. 555 - Dar Al ArabiaBeirut- Lebanon & Sahih Muslim Hadith No. 6571Darusslam- Arabic)

The hadith quoted above proves that the 'woman of the people of the paradise' was not covering her face when she had visited the prophet nor was she covering it when Ibn 'Abbas was discussing about her later. Some may argue by saying she could be recognized owing to the dark complexion of her hand and not due to the exposure of her face. However, this argument would carry no weight since she was not the only black woman at the time of the prophet. Moreover, to identify a person, the aspect of exposure of the face is of immense significance. The Prophet (pbuh) is reported to have said, "...The Muhrima (a woman in the state of Ihram) should not cover her face, or wear gloves." (Sahih Bukhari, Vol. 3, Hadith No. 1838) With regards to the hadith quoted above, some people say that the commandment of the prophet (pbuh) not to cover the face is specifically for the women in the state of Ihram, thus it cannot be used as an evidence because in Ihram certain rules and regulations change. However, the point to be noted here is that the things that are Mustahab (recommended) can be made Haraam (forbidden), like the cutting of nails, even the things that are Mubah (permissible) or Mustahab (recommended) can be made Fard (obligatory), e.g. wearing two pieces of white unsewn cloth is made Fard for a man, while normally it is Mubah (permissible). But anything that is Haraam in the normal course of life can never be made Fard. Hence, if exposing the face is Haraam for women, then how can it be made Fard in Ihraam? During the day of Nahr (10th Dhul-Hijja), when Al-Fadl bin 'Abbas was riding behind the prophet on his she -camel, "...a beautiful woman from the tribe of Khath'am came, asking the verdict of Allah's Apostle. Al-Fadl started looking at her as

her beauty attracted him. The Prophet looked behind while Al-Fadl was looking at her; so the Prophet held out his hand backwards and caught the chin of Al-Fadl and turned his face (to the other side) in order that he should not gaze at her..." (Sahih Bukhari, Vol. 8, Hadith No. 6228) In the above-mentioned hadith we find Al-Fadl looking at the lady because her beauty attracted him. Here too, it is understood that the face of the lady was exposed as the hadith says that the woman was beautiful. Obviously, it is the face that plays the most significant role in making a person being perceived as ugly or beautiful. In spite of this, the prophet didn't instruct the lady to cover her face but instead turned the face of Al-Fadl in order to prevent him from staring at her, further substantiating the verse of the Qur'an from Surah An-Noor, 24:30, which says: "Say to the believing men that they should lower their gaze and guard their modesty: that will make for greater purity for them: and Allah is well acquainted with all that they do." The Qur'an further says in the next verse: And say to the believing women that they should lower their gaze and guard their modesty; that they should not display their beauty and ornaments except what (must ordinarily) appear thereof... (Al-Qur'an 24:31) When Ibne Abbaas (RA), the leading commentator of the Qur'an was asked about the verse mentioned above as to what it meant, he replied, "it refers to the face and hands". (Collected by Ibn Abee Shaybah in al-Musannaf, Vol. 3, p. 540 & 541, hadith no. 16997 & 17012 and al-Bayhaqi in

Sunan al- Kubraa. Al-Albaanee ruled in Jilbaab al-Mar'ah alMuslimah, pp 59-60, that the isnaad of this statement is saheeh.) Some scholars argue that all the ahadith, which speak of women's faces being seen, are of the time earlier than the revelation of the verses of Al-Qur'an 33:59 & 24:31, which make covering the face compulsory. Firstly, as discussed earlier, these Qur'anic verses do not make covering the face compulsory for women. Secondly, to prove that these verses make the covering of women's face compulsory, they have to quote an authentic hadith for it, which they don't. Thirdly most of the ahadith quoted above, are of the time after these Qur'anic verses were revealed. Thus, it can be concluded that covering the face is not obligatory for women. However, covering the face was obligatory for the Ummul Mu'mineen, the wives of the Prophet (pbuh) as was Tahajjud obligatory for the Prophet (pbuh). Although Muslims are exempted from its obligation, it is still a highly recommended Sunnah for the Muslims. The scholars unanimously agree that it is preferable for Muslim women to cover their faces. Thus it is not compulsory for Muslim Women to cover their faces but those women who cover their faces may continue to do so if they wish. And Allah knows the best. With the fast devaluation of currency and ever changing economic pattern, can the concept of interest be altered within the framework of Islam? Allah mentions Ribah at eight places in the Quran. There is a strict prohibition of the same everywhere that if you take Ribah, a war is declared against you from Allah and his Rasool (SAW). Some scholars say that Ribah does not mean interest. That’s totally wrong. There is no doubt about

it. Ribah means interest and usury. It’ll take time to prove logically why Ribah is Haram.

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