Date : 09-08-2010

Question :

Is it permissible for women to visit graves?

The Answer :

All perfect praise be to Allah the Lord of the Worlds. May Allah`s peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Mohammad and upon all his family and companions.

There is disagreement among Muslim scholars about women visiting graves. The reliable opinion of the Shafie school of thought is that it is disliked; not unconditionally prohibited nor unconditionally permissible. It is disliked because women have little patience, worry when visiting graves and relected  to incur a sin and get depressed due to their grief being renewed.

Al-Shirbini (May Allah have mercy on him) said: "It is disliked for women to visit graves as it is likely to cause them to cry loudly due to being easily overwhelmed with emotions."

It isn`t prohibited for women to visit graves because the Prophet (Peace be upon him) came upon a woman who was weeping for her child. He said to her: Fear Allah and have patience." {Bukhari & Muslim}. Had it been prohibited, he would have told her so. Moreover, She (Aysha, May Allah be pleased with " her) said she asked God’s messenger what she should say: "i.e. when visiting graves, and he told her to say: “Peace be upon the inhabitants of the abodes, believers and Muslims, and Allah Show mercy to those of us who go before and those who go later. If Allah Will we shall join you." {Related by Muslim}.

However, visiting the grave of the leader of the Messengers, Prophet Mohammad (Peace be upon him), is excluded from the above disagreement since visiting his grave is among the greatest good deeds that draw a Muslim closer to Allah." {Moghni Al-Mohtaj, vol.2/ pp.57}.

When women visit graves, they must observe the following important matters: 

1- They aren`t allowed to go out wearing makeup and perfume. Rather, they must adhere to the code of Islamic dress.

2- They aren`t allowed to mingle with non-Mahram men.

3- They should be accompanied by a Mahram in case the graveyard is deserted.

4- They must observe calmness in the graveyard and learn the lesson from this sad experience without crying or wailing.

5- The aim behind visiting the grave is getting reminded of the Hereafter.

Here, we remind of what Al-Khaliobi mentioned in his Hashiyah: "Visiting graves is prohibited for the woman observing Iddah (Waiting period a woman observes after death of husband or divorce), even due to death of husband, or without a husband`s permission."

It is forbidden for the woman to visit graves during her Iddah, even her husband`s grave. It is also prohibited for her to visit graves without her husband`s permission. And Allah the Almighty Knows Best.