Is it true that Hz. Umar prevented his wife from going to mosque because he was jealous of her?

The Details of the Question
Is it true that Hz. Umar prevented his wife from going to mosque because he was jealous of her?
The Answer

Dear Brother / Sister,

Like everybody, Hz. Umar is also jealous of his spouse. However, Hz. Umar did not prevent his wife from going to mosque. On the contrary, there are narrations showing that he did not do so:

“One of the wives of Hz. Umar used to offer fajr (morning) and isha (night) prayers in congregation in the mosque. She was asked, 'Why do you insist on going to mosque for prayer though you know that Umar dislikes it and is jealous of you?' She replied, "The statement of the Messenger of Allah 'Do not stop Allah's women-slaves from going to Allah's mosques' prevents him from this act." (Bukhari, Jumua, 13)

“Atika bint Zayd, the wife of Umar Ibn al-Khattab, used to ask Umar for permission to go to mosque. He would keep silent; so she would say, "By Allah, I will go to mosque unless you forbid me."Umar would not forbid her." (Malik, Muwatta, Qiblah, 14)

Clear statements of the Prophet (pbuh) regarding the issue exist in hadith resources:

“If the wife of any one of you asks permission to go to mosque, do not forbid her.”(Bukhari, Adhan, 162; Jumua, 13; Muslim, Salat, 134)

“'Do not stop Allah's women-slaves from going to Allah's Mosques.” (Bukhari, Jumua, 13; Muslim, Salat, 136)

There are narrations indicating that women also went to mosque and joined the congregational prayers like men during the time of the Prophet (pbuh).  (see Muslim, Salat, 133; Haythami, Majmau’z-Zawaid, 2/33)

On the other hand, it is known that the Prophet stated the following: 

“It is better for women to perform prayers at home but do not prevent them from going to mosques.”

“It is better for a woman to pray in private chamber than in her living room, and better for her to pray in a hidden corner of her private chamber than in her private chamber.” (Abu Dawud, Salat, 52-53)

Besides, a woman came to the Prophet (pbuh) and said to him, “O Messenger of Allah! I like performing prayers with you." The Prophet answered her as follows:

“I know that youlike performing prayers with me but the prayer you perform in your private chamber is better the one than you perform in your living room; the prayer you perform in your living room is better the one than you perform in the lounge of your house; the prayer you perform in the lounge of your house is better the one than you perform in the mosque of your tribe; and the prayer you perform in the mosque of your tribe is better the one than you perform in my mosque.” (see Haythami, Majmau’z-Zawaid, 2/34)

Besides, Hz. Aisha stated the following upon the incidents that took place:

“If Hz. Prophet (pbuh) had seen the new things women invented, he would have prevented them from going to mosque like the women of Children of Israel were prevented.” (Bukhari, Adhan,163; Muslim, Salat, 144; Muwatta, Qiblah, 15)

Accordingly, it is religiously permissible for women to go to mosques and places where knowledge is taught. However, there are some rules that both men and women need to obey. The decree to be given about the issue can change based on the obedience to those rules. It is necessary to understand the different decrees in hadiths and fiqh books in this context. (see Marghinani, al-Hidaya, al-Maktabatu’l-Islamiyya, nd. 1/57; Fatawa al-Hindiyya 5/346)

Everybody, whether male or female, that joins the community needs to be careful about their cleanliness in terms of their spirit, body and attitudes so as not to disturb people materially and spiritually. In cases of violation, those who disturb others and those who are disturbed can decide themselves based on their conscience.  

This is not limited to women going to mosque only. It interests everybody related to all aspects of their lives.

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