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Is It Obligatory To Cover My Nakedness When I Am Alone?

Answered according to Shafi'i Fiqh by Seekersguidance.org
Answered by Ustadha Shazia Ahmad

Question

I find it very hard to wear loose, modest clothes at home. As a woman, am I allowed to wear something that does not cover the area between my navel and knee when I’m alone at home? And if it does cover, is it permissible to be tight, like tight jeans? I also want to ask if I can wear tight clothes next to mahrams (men/women), as long as they cover the `awrah?

Answer

Assalamu alaykum,

Thank you for your question. 

The ruling

Here is the ruling in the Shafi`i school about uncovering when alone: 

“Clothing one’s nakedness (0: from the eyes of men as well as jinn (def: w22) and angels, for these too see people in this world) is obligatory, by scholarly consensus (ijma’, b7), even when alone, except when there is need to undress. (0: Zarkashi states (A: and it is the authoritative position for the school) that the nakedness it is obligatory to clothe when alone consists solely of the front and rear private parts for men, and of that which is between the navel and the knees for women.)“ [The Reliance of the Traveller, f5.1]

Tight clothing

Tight clothing is not considered covering one’s nakedness because the body shape is visible.

If one were to wear tight jeans around family members, they should ensure that their shirt is loose and goes down to the knees. Otherwise, it is sinful. A Muslim’s clothing should be loose, long enough, and not transparent.

Customarily, if one were to look across the world at Muslim cultures, over history, one would find that all of their clothing was loose, modest, and beautiful. 

Islam was the reason for this, and one should remember that what you see on social media and films is not our standard, never was, and never should be. We are proud of our Islamic cultures and dress and what we represent, and if it means we need to break some habits, we must. 

Only then can we find ourselves again, and to that end is this classic Arabic proverb: “Whoever knows himself, knows his Lord.“

مَنْ عَرَفَ نَفْسَهُ فَقَدْ عَرَفَ رَبَّهُ

May Allah give you the best of this world and the next. 

[Ustadha] Shazia Ahmad  

Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadha Shazia Ahmad lived in Damascus, Syria, for two years, where she studied aqidah, fiqh, tajweed, Tafseer, and Arabic. She then attended the University of Texas at Austin, where she completed her Master’s in Arabic. Afterward, she moved to Amman, Jordan, where she studied fiqh, Arabic, and other sciences. She recently moved back to Mississauga, Canada, where she lives with her family.

 

This answer was collected from Seekersguidance.org. It’s an online learning platform overseen by Sheikh Faraz Rabbani. All courses are free. They also have in-person classes in Canada.

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