This is a question about women and Islam.?

During the Prophet Muhammad's lifetime, did men and women pray within the same space? Also, did women ever act as imams?

7 Answers

  • B
    Lv 4
    1 decade ago
    Best Answer

    Yes men and women prayed in the same Mosque. Women preffered the back during Prayer (for obvious reasons- i.e movements required in the Prayer) but you should know that the mosque is also a place to learn, to read the Quran and to teach it. So it was only during the prayer when this segregation was necessary.


    As-Sayyid Sabiq, a renowned Islamic scholar from al-Azhar, states that the following people are prohibited from leading prayer: someone with a legitimate excuse not to pray and an incapacitated person. He further states that the following people are discouraged from leading prayer: an evildoer and someone who changes the religion. Thus, maleness was not mentioned as a criterion. Moreover As-Sayyid Sabiq states that it is preferable for a woman to lead other women in prayer and he states that Aishah used to lead the women in prayer.

    (As-Sayyid Sabiq, Fiqh us-Sunna, American Trust Publications, 1989, vol. 2, p. 58).

    According to Ibn Rushd, Imam al-Shafii believed that a woman could lead other women in prayer; however, both al-Tabari and Abu Thawr believed that a woman could lead both men and women in prayer.

    (Fatima Mernissi, The Forgotten Queens of Islam, University of Minnesota Press, 1993, p.33 (citing Ibn Rushd, Bidaya al-Mujtahid wa Nihaya al-Muqtasid, Dar al-Fikr, vol. 1, p. 105)).

    Umm Waraqa bint Abdallah, an Ansari woman who was well versed in the Qurân, was instructed by Prophet Muhammad to lead ahl dariha (ahl dariha means the people of her home where 'dar' means home and can refer to one’s residence, neighborhood, or village), which consisted of both men and women, in prayer. The "people of Umm Waraqa’s home" were so numerous that Prophet Muhammad appointed a muezzin for her. Umm Waraqa was one of the few to hand down the Qurân before it was written. Umm Waraqa wished to be known as a martyr so she asked Prophet Muhammad to allow her to participate in the Battle of Badr (624 A.D./ 2 A.H.) so that she could take care of the wounded; from that time on Prophet Muhammad referred to her as "the female martyr."

    (Wiebke Walther, Women in Islam, Markus Wiener Publishing, 1981, p. 111 (citing Ibn Sad, Kitab al-Tabaqat al-Kabir, vol. 8, p. 335).

    Several ahâdîth set forth the criteria for leading prayer: an ability to read the Qurân, knowledge of the Qurân, knowledge of the teachings of Prophet Muhammad, and being accepted by the congregation. The following hadith, related by Ahmad and Muslim and reported by Ibn Masud, states that the Prophet said: "The imam of a people should be the one who is the most versed in the Qurân. If they are equal in their recital, then the one who is most knowledgeable of the sunnah. If they are equal in the sunnah, then it is the one who migrated first. If they are equal in that, then it is the eldest. And one should not lead prayer in another’s house without permission."

    (As-Sayyid Sabiq, Fiqh us-Sunna, American Trust Publications, 1989, vol. 2, p. 56).


    seems to me like Women are def. able and even encouraged to become Imams for their fellow Muslims.

  • 1 decade ago

    Women always prayed behind men. This is because of the movements in the prayer. No woman wants a man staring at her backside while she prays!

    Men and women did pray in the same room, if that's what you're asking. Often, we still do!

    According to most scholars, a woman can be the imam for other women.

  • 1 decade ago

    No men and women from what I have gathered really have no real reason to be separate. I do have a Muslim friend and she has told me that women, while they have gained many rights, are still considered beneath men when it comes to Islam. In nations like Saudi Arabia and a few others men can still have more than one wife. While some Islamic nations are doing away with arranged marriages there are still some that practice this as well. As far as an Imam no I have yet to see a woman who has been one. It is an area for men, kind of like the priest hood in Catholicism. Or I guess a better example would be more like the Bishops in the Catholic religion.

  • 1 decade ago

    Women and Men prayed at the same place, HOWEVER, prophet Mohammed separated them. Meaning, men pray at front and women pray at back. He Also said, The best place for men to pray is far front, and the best place for women to pray is far back. Which indicates separation.

    Also, at the time of the prophet, women never led the prayers. How could they lead a prayer when they were ordered to lower their voice when they speak in public??

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  • 1 decade ago

    I'm not Muslim, but I did watch a documentary in which an imam said that Mohammed did not separate men and women in the mosque, that there is no basis for it in the Quran. The documentary was specifically about the separation of men and women in the mosque, and how in some places it is becoming more and more profound.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    ya , ya men and woman pray in same space;the men in front and woman behind

    no , of sure no woman acted as imams

  • 1 decade ago

    I would love to know the answer to this, especially the second part. I've starred it; hopefully you'll get some helpful replies.

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