He Wants To Marry Her But She Does Not
Wear Niqaab. Should He Go Ahead And Propose Or Should
He Look For Someone Else?
Islamic Rulings -
Living Shariah Verdicts
Islamic Questions & Answers
I am a young Arab man who lives according to our
Arab traditions, or what is known as a good attitude
and etiquette, but this commitment has nothing to do
with adhering to Islamic teachings, because in our
country adhering to tradition does not contradict
listening to music, mixing, dealing with riba-based
banks and so on. I proposed marriage to a girl in the
same environment that I am living in, and her family
have been friends of my family for a long time. They
all approved of the marriage since they know that we
are both of good character. But my problem,
unfortunately, started when I began to read about the
rules on marriage in Islam and I started to reduce
mixing and to pray regularly in the mosque and let my
beard grow and not deal with riba-based banks and not
listen to music and so on. Now both families are
regarding me as an extremist, except those on whom
Allaah has mercy, and they started to make this girl
afraid of me, even though she loves me very much and
has told them all about that many times. The girl
wants to be committed but she is not able to do some
things such as wearing niqaab or covering the face. So
she too regards these things as signs of extremism in
religion, as her family do.
Should I forget about this girl who is of good
character and proper etiquette and who is keen to pray
and recite the adhkaar of the Messenger (peace and
blessings of Allaah be upon him) and is trying to be
committed, and who loves me and tells others of that,
and does not want to lose me, but she is unable to do
some things that have to do with religion, such as
covering her face, and look for someone else who is
committed but whose family and behaviour I do not know
and my judgement of her will be only according to what
I hear from those who know her family and behaviour?.
Praise be to Allaah.
We ask Allaah the Almighty to make us and you
steadfast in adhering to His religion, and to bless us
and you with more obedience and righteousness.
With regard to what you are asking about, it is better
for you to stay with this girl towards whom your heart
is inclined, and who feels likewise about you, and who
has no faults that would cause you to leave her. All
that there is, is that she needs a little care and
encouragement and sound Islamic education to accept
and follow the commands of Allaah.
A lot of that may come after marriage, especially if
you treat her nicely and move her into a better
environment than the one she is in, which is what we
advise and encourage you to do.
There is no reason why a woman who loves her religion
and is obedient to her husband should not respond to
the command of Allaah as regards her clothing,
especially since this will make her husband love and
respect her more.
Her refusal to wear niqaab may be because of the lies
fabricated by some of those who are ignorant and who
follow their own whims and desires, who say that the
niqaab is a custom inherited from the Jaahiliyyah and
that it was not brought by Islam. You should explain
to her the ruling on a woman covering her face, with
evidence from the Qur'aan and Sunnah, and tell her
that the scholars are unanimously agreed that this
ruling is prescribed in Islam.
Remind her of the Sahaabi women who hastened to tear
their aprons so that they could cover their faces
after the verse of hijab was revealed, and encourage
her to have righteous friends. Tell her that this
world is transient and soon each of us will meet our
Lord with our deeds.
Neither you nor she should worry about what your
families will say. As for such environments where the
rulings of Islam are not known and people cannot
differentiate between proper adherence to Islam and
extremism no attention should be paid to them or to
what they say about one who adheres to the path of
If your wife does not respond to the Islamic
injunction to cover the face, then be patient with
her, and try to convey the message to her in some
other way, such as from another women who is involved
in da'wah, or by means of tapes and books by scholars
whose knowledge and religious commitment can be
Seek the help of Allaah and persist in calling upon
Him, asking Him for support and help to establish a
household based on what our Lord loves and is pleased
Show her the answer to question no. 21134, which
speaks of the obligation to wear niqaab according to
the Qur'aan and Sunnah.
And please see question no. 20343 which speaks of the
husband's duty to advise his wife and how he may do
And Allaah is the Source of strength.
Confused about women covering
First of all I must make clear that I have read
your articles related to this topic. Although I have
heard other evidences to suggest that the FACE veil is
optional, due to the following:
(1)When the ayah was revealed commanding the believing
women to cover (24:31) only the wives of the prophet
covered themselves with a facial veil. The other
Muslim women did not take steps to veil their faces.
(2)When some of the sahabah intended to propose to a
women they would go and look at her without her
knowledge. And of course if she had worn a facial veil
they would not have been able to see her?
This topic is causing me much confusion please clarify
the importance of the niqaab, I only want to do the
correct thing for the sake of Allah.
Praise be to Allaah.
We appreciate your keenness to find out the truth and
follow it, and we ask Allaah to show us the truth as
truth and enable us to follow it, and to show us
falsehood as false and enable us to avoid it. The
correct view regarding this matter is that it is
obligatory for women to cover all of their bodies in
front of men. See question no. 21134.
Your saying that "the rest of the Muslim women did not
cover their faces" is not correct. Rather the command
to observe full hijab applied to the wives of the
Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him)
and his daughters and the believing women. The
evidence for that is the verse in which Allaah says
(interpretation of the meaning):
"O Prophet! Tell your wives and your daughters and the
women of the believers to draw their cloaks (veils)
all over their bodies (i.e. screen themselves
completely except the eyes or one eye to see the way).
That will be better, that they should be known (as
free respectable women) so as not to be annoyed. And
Allaah is Ever Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful"
And Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):
"And tell the believing women to lower their gaze
(from looking at forbidden things), and protect their
private parts (from illegal sexual acts) and not to
show off their adornment except only that which is
apparent (like both eyes for necessity to see the way,
or outer palms of hands or one eye or dress like veil,
gloves, headcover, apron), and to draw their veils all
over Juyoobihinna (i.e. their bodies, faces, necks and
The command in these two verses is general and applies
to all believing women.
Al- Bukhaari narrated that ‘Aa'ishah said: "May Allaah
have mercy on the first Muhaajir women. When Allaah
revealed the words ‘and to draw their veils all over
Juyoobihinna (i.e. their bodies, faces, necks and
bosoms)' they tore their aprons and covered their
faces with them." See also question no. 6991.
Abu Dawood (4101) narrated that Umm Salamah said:
"When the words ‘to draw their cloaks (veils) all over
their bodies' [al-Ahzaab 33:59] were revealed, the
women of the Ansaar went out looking as if there were
crows on their heads because of the covering." Classed
as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh Abi Dawood.
The Muhaajir and Ansaari women obeyed this command and
covered their faces.
With regard to a man looking at the woman to whom he
wishes to propose marriage, this is part of the Sunnah.
Abu Dawood (1783) narrated that Jaabir ibn ‘Abd-Allaah
said: "The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of
Allaah be upon him) said: ‘When any one of you wants
to propose marriage to a woman, if he can look at that
which will motivate him to go ahead and marry her,
then let him do so.' I proposed marriage to a girl and
I used to hide myself until I saw that which motivated
me to go ahead and marry her, then I married her."
Classed as hasan by al-Albaani in Saheeh Abi Dawood,
no. 1832. In the report narrated by Ibn Maajah it says
that he hid in her garden to see her.
This hadeeth indicates that the women of the Sahaabah
used to cover their faces, because if it had been the
custom for women to uncover their faces, there would
have been no need to hide, because he would have been
able to see her in any place if she had been
uncovering her face.
But because it was the custom for women to cover their
faces, he needed to hide. It is well known that if
there are no non-mahram men around, a woman does not
cover her face, such as when she is in her house or in
her garden, as in this hadeeth.
And Allaah knows best.