RECENTLY a women’s organisation in Mumbai, Akhil Bhartiya Muslim Mahila Association, conducted a survey and found out that in 18 of the total sufi mausoleums, women are prohibited from entering Astana i.e. sanctum and sanctorum in which they were previously allowed. Prominent among them is Haji Ali Dargah, which is highly popular among non-Muslims also.
The report created a media stir. Everybody wanted to know on what grounds are they prohibited.
When press questioned some clerics about it, they promptly quoted hadiths which prohibit it. Some quote hadith from Imam Bukhari, saying it is prohibited, while other from Sahih Muslim, saying it was prohibited but later on the Prophet (PBUH) allowed it. Our clerics simply quote a hadith while completely ignoring the context. It was for this reason that the Prophet (PBUH) discouraged people from collecting hadith, as he knew it will create problems when he is gone. Continue reading “Are women really prohibited from entering mausoleums?”