What can a woman recite from the Quran during Haydh?
In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.
As-salāmu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullāhi wa-barakātuh.
A Haaidhah (woman in haydh), a Nufasa (woman in nifas) or Junubi (person in the state of major ritual impurity) cannot recite the Qur’an with the intention of recitation, neither a complete verse, nor a part of one. This is due to the following hadith:
عَنِ ابْنِ عُمَرَ عن النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم قال : لَا تَقْرَأْ الْحَائِضُ وَلَا الْجُنُبُ شَيْئًا مِنْ الْقُرْآنِ.
Translation: It is narrated from Abdullah ibn Umar (RA) from the Prophet ﷺ that he said: ‘A menstruating women and a Junubi should not recite anything from the Quran.’
However, there are exceptions to the above ruling:
- When teaching the Quran they can break up the words by pausing after each one, or break up the words into syllables.
- They can recite verses of the Qur’an as Dua with two conditions. Firstly, they must intend to recite the verse as dua and not recitation. Secondly, the verse must contain some words that pertain to dua (asking from Allah). This includes short ayaat as well as long ayaat, as long as some part of the ayah contains the words of dua, the entire ayah can be read. Verses that contain the meaning of dua are those that pertain to asking Allah for something, for e.g. ‘Rabbana Atina fid dunyah hasanah…’ Therefore, one can recite Surah al-Falaq and Surah al-Naas for protection, as the words incorporate the meaning of dua. Moreover, those verses which are mentioned in the hadith (ad’iyah ma’thoorah) as duas to be recited on certain occasions can also be recited, for example Surah al-Ikhlas. It is narrated that Rasoolullah ﷺ would recite Surah al-Ikhlas, surah al-Falaq and surah an-Nas every night and blow into his palms and pass them over his body thrice. It is also narrated that Rasoolullah ﷺ instructed Uqbah ibn Amir رضي الله عنه to recite Surah al-Ikhlas, surah al-Falaq and surah an-Nas, as nobody has sought refuge through anything better than them. In another narration Rasoolullah ﷺ instructed a companion رضي الله عنه to recite Surah al-Ikhlas, surah al-Falaq and surah an-Naas thrice in the morning and evening as they suffice for everything. Similarly, reciting Surah al-Kafiroon is permissible because Rasoolullah ﷺ said to one companion, ‘recite Surah al-Kafiroon and then go to sleep at its end, for it is a declaration of freedom from polytheism.’ Therefore, it is a means of seeking protection from polytheism. Similarly, one may read Ayatul Kursi, as it is mentioned in one narration that if one recites ayatul kursi when retiring to bed, there will be a guard from Allah who will protect the reader all night and no Shaytan will be able to approach him until dawn.
- They can recite verses of the Quran as dhikr with the same two conditions, i.e. intend dhikr and the verses must contain words pertaining to dhikr. This includes long and short ayaat, as long as some part of the verse contains words pertaining to dhikr. Dhikr means praise of Allah (Thana), thus any words praising Allah can be read with the intention of dhikr. For example, Tasbeeh (Subhanallah, Subhanak), Tahmeed (Alhamdulillah) and Tahleel (la ilaha illallah). Therefore, reading لَا إِلَهَ إِلَّا أَنْتَ سُبْحَانَكَ إِنِّي كُنْتُ مِنَ الظَّالِمِينَ as dhikr is permissible because the words pertain to praise. Saying ‘Alhamdulillah’ with the intention of gratitude is also permissible as it is Shukr. One can also recite Ayatul Kursi with the intention of dhikr as it contains the praise of Allah. Surah al-ikhlas is also the praise of Allah, as mentioned in one narration that a companion would recite it very often and when questioned as to why, he said ‘because it is the description of Ar-Rahman, so I love to read it.’ Moreover, those verses which are mentioned in the hadith as dhikr to be recited on certain occasions can also be recited, for example saying ‘Inna lillahi wa inna ilayhi raji’oon’ when hearing of a person’s death.
- When beginning a task for purposes of Barakah one can say ‘Bismillahir Rahmanir Raheem’.
- In normal day to day speech some words from the Quran can be used, for example one is surprised and says ‘Subhanallah’, or is giving da’wah to a non-Muslim and says “الله الصمد” – ‘Allah is the independent’. This includes small ayaat that are less than 18 letters.
And Allah Ta’āla Knows Best
Student, Darul Iftaa
Checked and Approved by,
Mufti Ebrahim Desai.