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Islam makes no distinction between men and woman in the spiritual regard. Both have a soul, both were created for the same purpose in life, both have a duty to fulfill their religious obligations, both will be judged by the All-Mighty, and both will be rewarded or punished according to their individual actions. Whenever the Quran mentions those fortunate beings who will enter the Gardens of Bliss because of their piety and good deeds, it mentions men and women together.
“And whoever does righteous good deeds, male or female, and is a true believer in the Oneness of Allah (Muslim), such will enter Paradise and not the least injustice, even to the size of a Naqira (speck on the back of a datestone), will be done to them.” (An-Nisa 4:124)
“Whoever works righteousness, whether male or female, while he (or she) is a true believer (of Islamic Monotheism) verily, to him We will give a good life (in this world with respect, contentment and lawful provision), and We shall pay them certainly a reward in proportion to the best of what they used to do (i.e. Paradise in the Hereafter).” (An-Nahl 16:97)
“The believers, men and women, are Auliya’ (helpers, supporters, friends, protectors) of one another, they enjoin (on the people) Al-Ma’ruf (i.e. Islamic Monotheism and all that Islam orders one to do), and forbid (people) from Al-Munkar (i.e. polytheism and disbelief of all kinds, and all that Islam has forbidden); they perform As-Salat (Iqamat-as-Salat) and give the Zakat, and obey Allah and His Messenger. Allah will have His Mercy on them. Surely Allah is All-Mighty, All-Wise.” (At-Tawbah 9:71)
“Verily, the Muslims (those who submit to Allah in Islam) men and women, the believers men and women (who believe in Islamic Monotheism), the men and the women who are obedient (to Allah), the men and women who are truthful (in their speech and deeds), the men and the women who are patient (in performing all the duties which Allah has ordered and in abstaining from all that Allah has forbidden), the men and the women who are humble (before their Lord Allah), the men and the women who give Sadaqat (i.e. Zakat, and alms, etc.), the men and the women who observe Saum (fast) (the obligatory fasting during the month of Ramadan, and the optional Nawafil fasting), the men and the women who guard their chastity (from illegal sexual acts) and the men and the women who remember Allah much with their hearts and tongues (while sitting, standing, lying, etc. for more than 300 times extra over the remembrance of Allâh during the five compulsory congregational prayers) or praying extra additional Nawafil prayers of night in the last part of night, etc.) Allah has prepared for them forgiveness and a great reward (i.e. Paradise).” (Al-Ahzab 33:35)
There can thus be no doubt that in the Hereafter, men and women will both be judged, each individual bearing the burden of its own acts, each soul will be punished for its transgressions and each will be rewarded for its obedience to Allah (SWT).
The Messenger of Allah (SAW) once said:
“Acquiring knowledge is compulsory for every Muslim.” (At-Tabarani)
This narration applies equally to men and women. “Knowledge” in this context refers primarily to knowledge of the Quran and the Sunnah as no Muslim should be ignorant of his or her Faith, but it also covers other areas of general education which can contribute to the welfare of civilization. It is precisely the ignorance about their religion among Muslim that has led to men oppressing women because they believe it is permitted, women not demanding their Allah-given rights because they are ignorant of them, and children growing up to perpetuate their parents’ follies. Throughout Islamic history, men and women both earned respect as scholars and teachers of the Faith. The books of Rijal (Reporters of Hadith) contain the names of many prominent women, beginning with Aisha and Hafsah (RU).
Both men and women are the slaves of Allah (SWT) and have a duty to worship and obey Him. Men and women have to pray, fast, give charity, go on pilgrimage, refrain from adultery and fornication, avoid the prohibited, enjoin the good and forbid the evil, and so on. Because of women’s roles as mothers, a role which does not end at a specific time but is a round-the-clock career, they have been exempted from attending the masjid for the five daily prayers or for Jumuah (Friday) prayer. Nevertheless, if they wish to attend the masjid, no one has the right to stop them.
Men and women are both encouraged to give charity, and there is nothing to stop a woman giving charity from her husband’s income. Aisha (RA) reported that the Messenger of Allah (SAW) said:
“If a woman gives in charity from her husband’s house ..” The Prophet (p.b.u.h) also said, “If a lady gives meals (in charity) from her husband’s house without spoiling her husband’s property, she will get a reward and her husband will also get a reward likewise. The husband will get a reward because of his earnings and the woman because of her spending.” (Sahih Bukhari)
Once Asma (RA) once said to the Prophet (SAW):
Once I said, “O Allah’s Apostle! I have no property except what has been given to me by Az-Zubair (i.e. her husband). May I give in charity?” The Prophet said, “Give in charity and do not withhold it; otherwise Allah will withhold it back from you . ” (Sahih Bukhari)