Prohibitions during Menstruation and Postnatal Bleeding

During the time a woman is menstruating or experiencing postnatal bleeding, the following eight activities are prohibited:

1. Ṣalāt (ritual prayer).

  •  It is also not permissible for her to perform a prostration of gratitude (sajda shukr) or prostration of recitation (sajda tilāwa).

2. Fasting obligatory or otherwise.

3. Recitation of even a single verse of the Holy Qur’ān:

  •  Reading less than a verse without the intention of reciting the Qur’ān is permissible, such as reciting Al-amudu li ’Llāh “All praise is for Allāh,” with the intention of gratitude or the recitation of Bismi ’Llāh “In the name of Allāh,” before eating (Al-Lubāb 43).
  • It is permissible to recite a verse or more with the intention of supplication (duʿā’). For instance, the entire Sūrat al-Fātiḥa can be recited with the intention of duʿā’. Likewise, any other verse or chapter from the Qur’ān can be recited with the intention of duʿā’ as long as they contain words indicative of supplication and there is no sin in this.
  • If a woman is teaching Qur’ān to students, then it will be permissible for her to spell out the words bit by bit and not recite the entire verse altogether. She can read one or two words at a time, breaking her breath in between.
  •  It is permissible to take the name of Allah, read duʿās, send salutations and blessings (alawāt) on the Messenger of Allāh (صلى الله عليه وسلم) , to recite prayers of forgiveness (istighfār), or any other dhikr (remembrance).

4. Touching the Qur’ān.

  •  However, it is permissible to touch the Qur’ān with a covering, such as a cloth sleeve or bag, but not a covering that is permanently attached to the Qur’ān. It is also not permissible to touch the Qur’ān with a portion of one’s garment, such as the sleeve or the edge of a dress while one is wearing them (Sharal-Hidāya of Imām ʿAbd al- ay Lucknawī 1:212).

5. Entering the masjid.

  •  It is permissible for a menstruating woman to enter a mualla (temporary place of prayer) or the place where ʿĪd prayer is performed as long as it is not in a masjid. The laws regarding the impermissibility of entering the masjid are not applicable to the prayer room which is not a Sharʿī Masjid.

6. Circumambulation (awāf) of the Holy Kaʿba.

7. Sexual intercourse.

8. Sexual enjoyment from the navel to below the knees of a menstruating woman.

  •  Therefore, other than intimacy (without a covering) or looking at the above mentioned area, all other types of intimacy and sexual enjoyment are permissible. There is absolutely no problem in the husband and wife eating, drinking, and sleeping together during her menstruation.

(The Laws of Menstruation, Postnatal Bleeding, & Dysfunctional Uterine Bleeding)

(By Mufti Abdur Rahman Mangera)

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