Women performing Hajj during menses

Q. During my previous Hajj I saw some people confused about Menses in Hajj.

Is it permissible for a Woman in Menses to assume Ihram? In this situation going to perform Umrah would she have to go to Taneem to re-assume Ihram? I once heard someone saying that there was no evidence of this so would you be able to clarify?

Also, with regards to Hajj and tawaaful Ifaadah and menses. I heard two opinions in Hajj about this, one where the woman had to perform Tawaaf and then make a “big” sacrifice in Makkah and one where she just made tawaaful Ifaada and that was sufficient.

What is the ruling on this? Would she also have to perform Tawaaful Wida?

A. It is permissible for women who is in menses to assume ihram for hajj. In this state she will do all the rituals (of hajj) except the Tawaaf.

In a case where a women is in Makka and she wants to perform Umrah, then she will have to go to Taneem to re-assume ihram.

Both the above acts are evident from the traditions recorded by Imam Bukhari in which it is stated that the Prophet (S.A.S) said to Aisha (R.A) (who was in her menses at the time of Hajj), ‘go into ihram for hajj. Do what the other pilgrims do, except that you must not make Tawaaf of the house (Kaaba)’. At the end of hajj rituals, when Aisha (R.A) wanted to perform Umrah which she could not perform before hajj (due to the state of menses), the Prophet (S.A.S) called her brother Abdur Rahman and told him to take Aisha (R.A) to Tan’eem where she would go into ihram for Umrah, and then he must bring her to perform Umrah. (Bukhari). It must be noted that a woman will not be able to perform Umrah while being in the state of menses.

If a woman could not perform Tawaful Ifadaah on its time (due to being in the state of menses) then the established teaching (from the hadith) is that she must wait in Makka until she becomes pure and then makes the Tawaful Ifadaah. If she does this, then she will not be required to give a big sacrifice.

It is important for a woman to understand that making Tawaful Ifadaah is a part of Hajj and without it, the hajj is not complete. It is for this reason, the law regarding the woman who has not performed this Tawaaf (due to her menses) stipulates that she must wait until she becomes pure and then perform the tawaaf before leaving. If her menses continue for a period which makes it difficult for her to remain in makka, then she can travel and then return after some time to perform the Farz Tawaaf (Tawaful Ifadaah). In this situation, she will not be able to have sexual relations with her husband, and if unmarried, she will not be able to marry until she performs this Tawaaf (since she is still in a state of ihram having started her hajj).

In light of the problem many women face today, where they are coming with groups from distant lands and tickets etc. are already booked to return, and they are unable to wait alone or return to makka again due to the difficulties involved, the scholars have given an allowance for a women to do the following:

1) She must make every effort to wait in makka in order to perform the Tawaful Ifaadah (if she is in her menses). In this regard, leaders of hajj groups should not book their ticket to leave immediately after the five days of hajj. They should delay their return by a few days to cater for sisters who may be in this state.

2) Upon becoming pure, the women must make the Tawaaf at her earliest opportunity (while at makka). She should not delay in doing this.

3) If waiting in makka (or madina) until one becomes pure is extremely difficult due to the flight arrangements, and it is also difficult to return to makka at another time to perform the Tawaful Ifadaah (seeing that it is costly and one may live in a distant land), then a women, as a first option, may use medication in order to restrain the bleeding at that time, and perform the Tawaaf (due to necessity). If this is not possible, then she should wait until the last day arrives for her to be in makka (in accordance to her groups traveling schedule) and if the menses do not stop until this time , then she should take a bath and quickly go to the ‘Mataaf’ (place of Tawaaf) and make the Tawaful Ifadaah along with the Sa’ee as fast as possible. In this case, she will also give a big sacrifice. Doing the Tawaaf in this state of menses will be sinful, however, it will suffice for the Farz Tawaaf due to a woman’s difficult situation.

This allowance has been given by the scholars due to the difficult situation which a woman may face while completing the hajj. It is the position adopted by the Ahnaf (Hanafi) jurists and has been practiced by many scholars. (Al Fiqhul Islam Wa Adilatihi Vol. 3 Pg 2222).

If a women performed Tawaful Ifadaah and afterwards got her menses during the time she was required to do Tawaful Wida, then she can leave whithout doing this Tawaaf.

And Allah Knows best.

Mufti Waseem Khan