وَ لَا یَاۡتَلِ اُولُوا الۡفَضۡلِ مِنۡکُمۡ وَ السَّعَۃِ اَنۡ یُّؤۡتُوۡۤا اُولِی الۡقُرۡبٰی وَ الۡمَسٰکِیۡنَ وَ الۡمُہٰجِرِیۡنَ فِیۡ سَبِیۡلِ اللّٰہِ ۪ۖ وَ لۡیَعۡفُوۡا وَ لۡیَصۡفَحُوۡا ؕ اَلَا تُحِبُّوۡنَ اَنۡ یَّغۡفِرَ اللّٰہُ لَکُمۡ ؕ وَ اللّٰہُ غَفُوۡرٌ رَّحِیۡمٌ ﴿۲۳﴾
2037. The reference may be to Abu Bakr who stopped the allowance he used to give to Mistah, a poor relative who had unfortunately become involved in the calumny against ‘A’ishah. (close)
اِنَّ الَّذِیۡنَ یَرۡمُوۡنَ الۡمُحۡصَنٰتِ الۡغٰفِلٰتِ الۡمُؤۡمِنٰتِ لُعِنُوۡا فِی الدُّنۡیَا وَ الۡاٰخِرَۃِ ۪ وَ لَہُمۡ عَذَابٌ عَظِیۡمٌ ﴿ۙ۲۴﴾
2038. The use of the word Ghafilat in connection with the calumny about ‘A’ishah establishes her complete innocence, implying that that paragon of virtue and righteousness had no idea or consciousness of having done any wrongful act. (close)
یَّوۡمَ تَشۡہَدُ عَلَیۡہِمۡ اَلۡسِنَتُہُمۡ وَ اَیۡدِیۡہِمۡ وَ اَرۡجُلُہُمۡ بِمَا کَانُوۡا یَعۡمَلُوۡنَ ﴿۲۵﴾
a. 17:37; 36:66; 41:21-23. (close)
2039. Recent scientific researches have established the truth of this verse. Scientific instruments have been invented which, if placed in a place, can preserve the talk of a person and even the sound of the movements of his hands, feet or other organs of his body. These instruments have greatly helped the police in apprehending thieves and other culprits and in bringing them to book. Thus with the help of these instruments the tongue, hands and feet of a guilty person, as it were, are made to bear witness against him. Science has also established the fact that every spoken word and movement or action leaves its impress in the atmosphere. According to the Qur’an these impresses will be given an embodied form in the next life, and thus the limbs of the author of deeds, good or bad, will bear witness against or in favour of him. (close)
یَوۡمَئِذٍ یُّوَفِّیۡہِمُ اللّٰہُ دِیۡنَہُمُ الۡحَقَّ وَ یَعۡلَمُوۡنَ اَنَّ اللّٰہَ ہُوَ الۡحَقُّ الۡمُبِیۡنُ ﴿۲۶﴾
a. 20:115; 22:63; 23:117. (close)
2040. All truth is relative. A thing may be true from one angle or one point of view, but false from another angle. It is God alone Who is Absolute Truth. (close)
اَلۡخَبِیۡثٰتُ لِلۡخَبِیۡثِیۡنَ وَ الۡخَبِیۡثُوۡنَ لِلۡخَبِیۡثٰتِ ۚ وَ الطَّیِّبٰتُ لِلطَّیِّبِیۡنَ وَ الطَّیِّبُوۡنَ لِلطَّیِّبٰتِ ۚ اُولٰٓئِکَ مُبَرَّءُوۡنَ مِمَّا یَقُوۡلُوۡنَ ؕ لَہُمۡ مَّغۡفِرَۃٌ وَّ رِزۡقٌ کَرِیۡمٌ ﴿٪۲۷﴾
2041. The word, al-Khabithat, meaning evil deeds or obscene words, the verse purports to say that evil persons do evil deeds or indulge in obscene and foul talk and scandal-mongering, while nothing comes out of good and virtuous persons but righteous deeds and pure and noble words. (close)
b. 8:75; 22:51. (close)
یٰۤاَیُّہَا الَّذِیۡنَ اٰمَنُوۡا لَا تَدۡخُلُوۡا بُیُوۡتًا غَیۡرَ بُیُوۡتِکُمۡ حَتّٰی تَسۡتَاۡنِسُوۡا وَ تُسَلِّمُوۡا عَلٰۤی اَہۡلِہَا ؕ ذٰلِکُمۡ خَیۡرٌ لَّکُمۡ لَعَلَّکُمۡ تَذَکَّرُوۡنَ ﴿۲۸﴾
c. 24:62. (close)
2042. The practice of sending in a name-slip or introduction card to a person with whom interview is sought in his office or home is a correct way of finding out whether or not he agrees to seeing the visitor, and is in conformity with the above-mentioned Quranic injunction. (close)
فَاِنۡ لَّمۡ تَجِدُوۡا فِیۡہَاۤ اَحَدًا فَلَا تَدۡخُلُوۡہَا حَتّٰی یُؤۡذَنَ لَکُمۡ ۚ وَ اِنۡ قِیۡلَ لَکُمُ ارۡجِعُوۡا فَارۡجِعُوۡا ہُوَ اَزۡکٰی لَکُمۡ ؕ وَ اللّٰہُ بِمَا تَعۡمَلُوۡنَ عَلِیۡمٌ ﴿۲۹﴾
لَیۡسَ عَلَیۡکُمۡ جُنَاحٌ اَنۡ تَدۡخُلُوۡا بُیُوۡتًا غَیۡرَ مَسۡکُوۡنَۃٍ فِیۡہَا مَتَاعٌ لَّکُمۡ ؕ وَ اللّٰہُ یَعۡلَمُ مَا تُبۡدُوۡنَ وَ مَا تَکۡتُمُوۡنَ ﴿۳۰﴾
a. 2:34; 21:111; 87:8. (close)
قُلۡ لِّلۡمُؤۡمِنِیۡنَ یَغُضُّوۡا مِنۡ اَبۡصَارِہِمۡ وَ یَحۡفَظُوۡا فُرُوۡجَہُمۡ ؕ ذٰلِکَ اَزۡکٰی لَہُمۡ ؕ اِنَّ اللّٰہَ خَبِیۡرٌۢ بِمَا یَصۡنَعُوۡنَ ﴿۳۱﴾
2043. As stated above the Qur’an is not content with merely taking a superficial view of things but goes to their very root. According to it, every good or bad quality springs from a certain root. In the case of a good quality, the Qur’an enjoins that the root should be mastered and fully kept under control and, in the case of an evil, it aims at its complete eradication and extermination and thus bolts and bars all the avenues to it. As it is the eyes through which most evil thoughts enter the mind, so in the verse under comment believing men and women have been commanded to restrain their looks when they happen to meet one another. (close)
2043A. Furuj may also signify "senses." (close)
وَ قُلۡ لِّلۡمُؤۡمِنٰتِ یَغۡضُضۡنَ مِنۡ اَبۡصَارِہِنَّ وَ یَحۡفَظۡنَ فُرُوۡجَہُنَّ وَ لَا یُبۡدِیۡنَ زِیۡنَتَہُنَّ اِلَّا مَا ظَہَرَ مِنۡہَا وَ لۡیَضۡرِبۡنَ بِخُمُرِہِنَّ عَلٰی جُیُوۡبِہِنَّ ۪ وَ لَا یُبۡدِیۡنَ زِیۡنَتَہُنَّ اِلَّا لِبُعُوۡلَتِہِنَّ اَوۡ اٰبَآئِہِنَّ اَوۡ اٰبَآءِ بُعُوۡلَتِہِنَّ اَوۡ اَبۡنَآئِہِنَّ اَوۡ اَبۡنَآءِ بُعُوۡلَتِہِنَّ اَوۡ اِخۡوَانِہِنَّ اَوۡ بَنِیۡۤ اِخۡوَانِہِنَّ اَوۡ بَنِیۡۤ اَخَوٰتِہِنَّ اَوۡ نِسَآئِہِنَّ اَوۡ مَا مَلَکَتۡ اَیۡمَانُہُنَّ اَوِ التّٰبِعِیۡنَ غَیۡرِ اُولِی الۡاِرۡبَۃِ مِنَ الرِّجَالِ اَوِ الطِّفۡلِ الَّذِیۡنَ لَمۡ یَظۡہَرُوۡا عَلٰی عَوۡرٰتِ النِّسَآءِ ۪ وَ لَا یَضۡرِبۡنَ بِاَرۡجُلِہِنَّ لِیُعۡلَمَ مَا یُخۡفِیۡنَ مِنۡ زِیۡنَتِہِنَّ ؕ وَ تُوۡبُوۡۤا اِلَی اللّٰہِ جَمِیۡعًا اَیُّہَ الۡمُؤۡمِنُوۡنَ لَعَلَّکُمۡ تُفۡلِحُوۡنَ ﴿۳۲﴾
2043B. Decent women. (close)
2044. As a good deal of misunderstanding and lack of proper knowledge as to what constitutes the Islamic notion of "Pardah" prevails even among Muslims, a somewhat detailed note on this much-vexed question is called for. The following verses deal with every aspect of "Pardah":—
(i) And say to the believing women that they restrain their looks and guard their private parts, and that they display not their beauty or their embellishment except that which is apparent thereof, and that they draw their head-coverings over their bosoms, and that they display not their beauty………(24:32, i.e. the verse under comment).
(ii) O Prophet, tell thy wives and thy daughters and the women of the believers that they should let down over them their loose outer garments. That is more likely that they will thus be recognised and not molested (33:60).
The Arabic word used in this verse (33:60) is, Jalabib of which the singular is Jilbab which means an outer or wrapping garment (Lane).
(iii) O wives of the Prophet! you are not like any other women if you are righteous. So be not soft in speech, lest he, in whose heart is a disease, should feel tempted, and speak decent words. And stay in your houses with dignity and do not show off yourselves in the manner of the showing off of the women of the former days of ignorance……(33:33, 34).
(iv) O ye who believe! let those whom your right hands possess, and those of you who have not attained to puberty, ask leave of you at three times before coming into your private apartments, before the Morning Prayer and when you lay aside your clothes at noon in summer and after the Night Prayer……(24:59).
The following inferences emerge from these four verses:
(a) When they go out, Muslim women are required to wear Jilbab, i.e. an outer and wrapping garment, which should cover their heads and bosoms in such a manner that the garment should come down from the head to the bosom covering the whole body. This is the significance of the Quranic words Yudnina ‘Alaihinna min Jalabibihinna (33:60). The wearing of an outer garment is intended to save a Muslim woman, when she goes about her business from the mental anguish of being stared at or molested or in any other way inconvenienced by persons of questionable character.
(b) Muslim men and women are to restrain their looks when they happen to face each other.
(c) The third commandment, though apparently applying to the wives of the Holy Prophet, includes, as is the practice of the Qur’an, other Muslim women. The words, 'And stay in your houses' (33:34) imply that whereas women may go out when necessary, the principal and primary sphere of their activities is inside the house.
(d) At three stated hours, even children are not allowed to enter the private apartments of their parents, nor are domestic servants or female slaves allowed to enter the sleeping rooms of their masters.
The first commandment applies to women when they go out. Then they are to use an outer garment which should cover their whole body. The second commandment relates to "Pardah" primarily inside the four walls of the house when near male relatives frequently come and go. In that case men and women are required only to restrain their looks and as an additional precaution women are to take care that their Zinah, i.e. beauty of person, dress and ornaments, is not displayed. They are not required to use Jilbab (outer garment) at that time because that would be very irksome and even impracticable in view of the free and frequent visits of very near blood relations. The context shows that this commandment relates to "Pardah" inside the four walls of the house, because all the persons mentioned in the verse under comment are very near relations who generally visit the houses of their relatives. The special mention in it of four categories of persons besides near relatives, viz. decent women, old servants, female slaves and minor boys, lends additional weight to the inference that the commandment in this verse relates to "Pardah" within the four walls of the house. The fact that the first commandment refers to "Pardah" outside the house and the second commandment basically refers to "Pardah" within the four walls of the house is also apparent from the different words that have been used to express the two forms of "Pardah" in the relevant verses, i.e. 33:60, and the verse under comment. Whereas in 33:60 the garment which a woman is to use when she goes out is Jilbab (an outer garment), the garment which she has to use inside the house when relatives visit is Khimar (a head-covering). Moreover, whereas in 33:60 the words used are Yudnina ‘Alaihinna min Jalabibihinna, i.e. they should let down over them their outer garments (for a detailed discussion of Jilbab and Yudnina see 33:60); in the verse under comment the words used are Yadribna Bikhumurihinna ‘Ala Juyubihinna, i.e. they should cast their head-coverings across their bosoms. It is clear that in the former case the garment will cover the head, the face and the bosom while in the latter case only the head and the bosom will become covered and the face may remain uncovered.
It may be noted in passing that the shape and form of the outer-garment which, as mentioned above, a woman must wear when she goes out and which covers her whole body will vary according to the customs, habits, social status, family traditions and usages of various classes of the Muslim community. The commandment with regard to "Pardah" within the four walls of the house will also apply to shops, fields. etc. where women of certain sections of Muslim society have to work to earn their living. There a woman will not be required to veil her face. She will only have to restrain her looks and to cover her Zinah, i.e. her ornaments and other embellishments, as women within the four walls of the house have to do when their near male relatives visit them.
The third commandment requires women to behave with dignity bordering on austerity when talking to stranger men; and they are also required to give their full attention to the discharge of their serious and important duties in regard to the affairs connected with the wellbeing of their own sex and the management of the household affairs and to looking after and bringing up of children and kindred matters. The fourth commandment enjoins husband and wife to have, as far as possible, sleeping apartments separate from those of other members of the family which even minor boys are not allowed to enter at hours stated in v. 59.
The word, Zinah, used in the verse under comment includes both natural and artificial beauty—beauty of person, dress and ornaments. The expression, 'except that which is apparent thereof,' contains all those things which it is not possible for a woman to cover such as her voice, gait or stature, and also certain parts of her body which have to remain uncovered according to her social status, her family traditions, her avocation and the customs of society. The permission to keep certain parts of the body uncovered will be subject to certain variations. Thus the words, 'they display not their beauty' will have different connotations with regard to women belonging to different sections and grades of society and the connotation will change with the change in the customs and modes of living and professions of a people. The words, 'And that they strike not their feet so that what they hide of their ornaments may become known' (24:32), show that public dancing which is so much in vogue in certain countries is definitely not allowed by Islam.
This is the Islamic conception of "Pardah." According to it Muslim women may go out as often as it is legitimately necessary for them to do so, but their primary and principal functions are confined to their homes which are as important and serious, if not more, as the avocations of men are. If women take to men’s avocations they seek to defy nature and nature does not allow its laws to be defied with impunity. (close)