Should She Study In A Mixed University Or Should She Stay In A City Without A Mahram And Study In A University That Is Not Mixed?
Islamic Rulings -
Living Shariah Verdicts
Islamic Questions & Answers
I have the choice between staying without a
mahram in a Muslim Arab country in order to study in a
university that is not mixed (in fact, my maternal
uncle through breastfeeding is in the same country,
city and neighbourhood, but he does not really uphold
ties with us) or staying with my family in a Muslim
Arab country (that is less conservative) to study in a
university that is mixed, in which there are evils and
abhorrent things. Which option should I choose?
Unfortunately, I cannot stay with my family without
going to the mixed university, because all the
universities in this country are mixed. And my father
absolutely and totally refuses to let me stay at home
and stop studying, because unfortunately my parents
are not committed. What should I do? May Allah reward
you with good.
Praise be to Allaah.
Mixing in workplaces and schools is haraam because of
the evils and haraam things to which it leads. Please
see the answer to question number 1200 and 103044.
It is not permissible for the girl's guardians to make
her go to this mixed school, because that is
heedlessness and a betrayal of the trust. Rather they
should prevent her from doing that which is haraam and
help to avoid sin, and they should be protective
towards her and protect her honour.
It is not permissible for a woman to travel without a
mahram, because the Prophet (blessings and peace of
Allah be upon him) said: "No woman should travel
except with a mahram." Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 1862.
And Muslim (1339) narrated from Abu Hurayrah (may
Allah be pleased with him) that the Prophet (blessings
and peace of Allah be upon him) said: "It is not
permissible for a woman who believes in Allah and the
Last Day to travel the distance of one day's journey
except with a mahram."
As for her staying in a city without a mahram, that is
not forbidden if she is safe and remembers that Allah
is always watching when she comes and goes, and she
avoids mixing with men.
Based on that, if a mahram travels with you and takes
you to the city where you are going to study, and you
stay there in a safe place and adhere to the Islamic
guidelines when going out to the University, there is
nothing wrong with that.
If we assume that the mahram cannot travel with you
there or back, and your family insist that you study
in one of the two choices that you mentioned, and
there is no alternative to that, then the basic
principle is that you should choose the lesser of two
evils so as to ward off the greater of the two. So you
have to choose the less evil of the two options. This
means that you have to think about and study the two
choices. Your travelling may be less evil, because in
that case you will avoid mixing, but it involves the
problem of your being alone and away from your family
in a strange city. If you can get in touch with your
paternal uncle through breastfeeding and he can keep
an eye on you and help you and so on, then that is
You should strive to increase your faith and
strengthen your connection with Allah, look for
righteous friends and keep yourself busy with good
deeds such as memorising Qur'aan, and regularly
offering naafil prayers and fasts.
We ask Allah to help and guide you.
And Allah knows best.
Woman going out on a mixed
trip without a mahram
Is it permissible for a woman to go out on a
trip in which men and women mix from morning until
evening, without a mahram?.
Praise be to Allaah.
Mixing of a woman with men is haraam, and we have
explained the evidence for that in the answer to
question no. 1200.
If this mixing is on a trip where people are more
likely to be relaxed and start chatting, then it is
more serious and harmful. Hence it is not permissible
for a woman to go out on such trips, even if there is
a mahram with her, so long as there is careless
mixing; and her going without a mahram is more
serious. Whoever agrees for his sister or daughter or
wife to take part in such trips is lacking in
protective jealousy and is weak in religious
commitment. We ask Allaah to keep us safe and sound.
And Allaah knows best.
Woman travelling to seek
knowledge without a mahram
What is the Islamic ruling on a
woman travelling to seek knowledge without a mahram?.
Praise be to Allaah.
The saheeh evidence indicates that a woman is not
allowed to travel except with a mahram. This is part
of the perfection and greatness of Islam, which
protects honour, and honours and takes care of women,
and strives to protect them and guard them against the
causes of temptation and deviation, whether she is the
one who is tempted or is the source of temptation.
The evidence includes the hadeeth narrated by al-Bukhaari
(1729) and Muslim (2391) from Ibn ‘Abbaas (may Allaah
be pleased with him) who said: The Prophet (peace and
blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: "No woman
should travel except with a mahram, and no man should
enter upon her unless there is a mahram with her." A
man said: "O Messenger of Allaah, I want to go out
with such and such an army and my wife wants to go for
Hajj." He said: "Go out with her."
Based on that, it is not permissible for a woman to
travel to seek knowledge without a mahram. She should
acquire the knowledge that she needs in the many ways
that are available, such as listening to tapes, asking
scholars over the phone and other means that Allaah
has made available in these times.
The Standing Committee was asked: Can a woman go out
to study medicine, if it is obligatory or permissible,
if doing so will lead to the following things no
matter how much she tries to avoid them:
a) Mixing with men, such as speaking to the patients,
the tutor of medicine and on public transport.
b) Travelling from a country such as Sudan to Egypt,
even if the journey will take only hours, and not
c) Is it permissible for her to stay alone without a
mahram in order to learn medicine, if she is going to
stay with a group of women, along with the
circumstances described above?
Firstly: if her going out to learn medicine will lead
to her mixing with men during her study or when riding
in mixed transportation that will lead to fitnah
(temptation), then it is not permissible for her to do
that, because guarding her honour is an individual
obligation, but learning medicine is a communal
obligation, and an individual obligation takes
precedence over a communal obligation. As for merely
speaking to a patient or a teacher of medicine, that
is not haraam, rather what is haraam is making the
voice soft and appealing when speaking to him, which
may tempt those in whose heart is the sickness of evil
and hypocrisy. This does not apply only to learning
Secondly: If she has a mahram who can travel with her
so that she can learn medicine, or teach it, or treat
a patient, that is permissible. If she does not have a
husband or mahram who can travel with her, then it is
haraam, even if the journey is by plane, because the
Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him)
said: "No woman should travel except with a mahram."
Saheeh – agreed upon. And because of what we have
stated above about the interests of protecting honour
taking precedence over the interests of learning
medicine or teaching it, etc.
Thirdly: If her staying with a trustworthy group of
women is so that she may learn medicine or teach it,
or treat women, then it is permissible, but if there
is the fear of fitnah (temptation) because of not
having a husband or mahram with her, then it is not
permissible. If she is going to treat men, that is not
permissible unless it is a case of necessity and she
is not alone with a man. End quote from Fataawa al-Lajnah
And Allaah knows best.