'Touch' A Girl to Check Her Wudu?
Question - Can a man "touch" a little girl to see if she is "clean for prayers?"
A law student at Chapman University researching a specific topic about "cleanliness for worship" in Islam, asks:
"I hope you might provide me with some insight and/or direction regarding ritual cleanliness in Islam. I must warn you in advance, the topic is not a pleasant one."
I am a law student at Chapman University, researching a rather specific question regarding the Muslim religion, specifically dealing with "ritual purity for worship."
In the particular case I am analyzing, a daughter claims her father touched her vagina on a number of occasions. The father claims he was checking to make sure she was clean for prayer, as consistent with his Muslim religion. The daughter was ages 10 to 12 during the course of the alleged events.
My question is whether or not a Muslim father can take down his daughters pants to check to make sure she is "clean for prayer." I apologize for the abruptness of the question but I must be forward when researching the issue.
I really appreciate your time and I hope to hear from you soon. Please e-mail me at your earliest convenience. If you know of any other authoritive, reliable or citable sources, I would be more than happy to continue researching through those sources. Thanks again!
We asked Yusuf Estes to answer this question some time back.
Here's His Answer:
Bismillah Rahman Raheem - (In the Name of Almighty God, The Most Gracious, The Most Merciful). Allahu 'Alim (God is the All-Knower)
Your question is very disturbing and sad at the same time.
Such a thing cannot be accepted in any society, much less Islam.
So the answer is absolutely - 'No'.
This is not anything from Islam. Not only is such behavior incorrect and inappropriate, it is also utterly disgusting. There is nothing like this in the religion of Islam.
In fact, it is forbidden for men (even fathers) to look or gaze at any woman (or man) including his children after they are old enough to use the bathroom by themselves, in the 'private area' - and this is defined as a person's aowrah and is from the center of their kneecap to the navel.
Once a girl is old enough to pray (puberty is the correct age) there is no way a man (or even a woman) should look toward her private area.
Reference the Quran (chapter 24:30 and 31)
"Tell the believing men to lower their gaze (in the presents of women) [i.e.; not to look toward the private parts of any women] and to guard their own private parts (from fornication and adultery)...."
The only defense I could imagine for such an incident would be the person in question is so ignorant of their religion, they do not even know the basics.
However, if they know we have to purify ourselves and make salat (prayers) five times a day then if follows they should know full well the rights of privacy for everyone held sacred by Islam.
Islam is based on the clear teachings of the Quran (in the Arabic language) and examples set by the prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, over 1,400 years ago.
Every ruling in Islam has to be based on these two sources - Quran of Allah's Speech & Hadith (traditions) of our prophet, peace be upon him. Every Muslim is required to know at least this much in their religion.
Islam is also about rights and limitations. Without doubt, the rights of privacy are the most inclusive ever offered for mankind at the time of Muhammad, peace be upon him. Limitations are not something taken lightly and each one of us is expected to stay within those limitations.
From the appearance on the surface of this email I would have to conclude that either we do not have all of the facts, or the accusations are not correct - or, and I dislike to believe this, someone is using their "religion" to perpetrate a most heinous crime.
Thank you for taking the time to ask the Muslims about our faith, beliefs and practices. This is highly appreciated and certainly we welcome future correspondance regarding any matters concerning Islam and the Mulsims.
Allah has All Knowledge. Any good is from Allah & the mistakes were from myself. Please pray for me and ask Allah to Forgive me for any mistakes. May Allah guide all of us to His Truth, ameen.
National Muslim Chaplain (retired)
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