Saturday, January 08, 2011

Are women allowed to wear pants in Islam?

It is harâm for women and girls to go out with dresses that are thin or tight or of fur, wearing their
ornaments such as ear-rings and bracelets without covering them, clad like men, with their hair cut short like men. Therefore, it is not permissible for them to wear trousers, not even ample ones.

Trousers are men’s clothing. In hadîth-i sherîfs, which exist in Terghîb-us-salât:[1] “Those women who dress themselves like men and those men who ornament themselves like women are accursed.” In fact, tight trousers are not permissible even for men. For, in this case the shapes of those parts of their body called qaba
awrat can be seen from the outside. Furthermore, it has not been an Islamic custom, neither of old nor now, for women to wear trousers. It has come from the irreligious, from those who do not know the Islamic way of attirement. Harâms cannot be Islamic customs even if they have spread and become settled. It is declared in a hadîth that he who makes himself resemble disbelievers will be on their side. Trousers can be worn under a mantle, yet the mantle must cover the knees as if there weren’t trousers under it. Baggy trousers, being very ample, can be good dressings for women, too, at places where they are customary. If they will cause fitna at
places where they are not customary, it is not permissible to wear them.

Great Islamic scholar Qâdî Sanâullah-i Pânîputî ‘rahmatullâhi ta’âlâ ’alaih’ (1143 [1730 A.D.] – 1225 [1810 A.D.],Pânî-put, India), in explaining the seventh piece of advice at the end of the book Tafhîmât by Shâh Waliyyullah-i Dahlawî‘rahmatullâhi ta’âlâ ’alaih’, (1114 [1702 A.D.] – 1176 [1762 A.D.], Delhi), says:

“Of old, it used to be an Islamic custom to go out wearing a long shirt, wrapping oneself up with a large towel, wearing clogs or things like that. But now it would be ostentation to go out with such things on at places where they are not customary. Our Prophet ‘sall-Allâhu ’alaihi wa sallam’ prohibited ostentation and making fame. We must dress ourselves with things that are customary among Believers. We must not keep ourselves aloof.”

So is the case with a woman’s going out with a dress with a veil at places where it is customary for women to wear ample mantles. In addition, causing an Islamic attirement to be mocked at, she will be sinful. See also the last five pages of the fourteenth chapter of the fifth fascicle of Endless Bliss.

[1] It was written by Muhammad bin Ahmad Zâhid ‘rahmatullâhi ta’âlâ’alaih’, (d. 632 [1234 A.D.], India.)

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