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In my previous article about Hijab we found out that Hijab is not the choice it is a ” MUST” and Muslimah (Muslim women) according to Quran and ahadith have no other choice but wearing it ,Here is the story behind the law of Hijab:
One of the best friend of Muhammad and his father in law was Umar bin Al Khattab( عمر بن الخطاب ) .Umar used to go out at night and chasing women when they would answer the call of nature.Normally at night he could not tell the difference between slave girls and Muslim women.He asked Muhammad to make Muslimah(Muslim women) to cover themselves ,that way he knows Muslim women and slave girls.Muhammad at first did not pay any attention and did not do that :
=() al-Bukhari Book of Ablution (Wudu) #148
al-Bukhari 146
Sahih al-Bukhari Vol. 1, Book 4, Hadith 148
Narrated ‘Aisha: The wives of the Prophet used to go to Al-Manasi, a vast open place (near Baqia at Medina) to answer the call of nature at night. ‘Umar used to say to the Prophet “Let your wives be veiled,” but Allah’s Apostle did not do so. One night Sauda bint Zam’a the wife of the Prophet went out at ‘Isha’ time and she was a tall lady. ‘Umar addressed her and said, “I have recognized you, O Sauda.” He said so, as he desired eagerly that the verses of Al-Hijab (the observing of veils by the Muslim women) may be revealed. So Allah revealed the verses of “Al-Hijab” (A complete body cover excluding the eyes).
( حَدَّثَنَا يَحْيَى بْنُ بُكَيْرٍ، قَالَ حَدَّثَنَا اللَّيْثُ، قَالَ حَدَّثَنِي عُقَيْلٌ، عَنِ ابْنِ شِهَابٍ، عَنْ عُرْوَةَ، عَنْ عَائِشَةَ، أَنَّ أَزْوَاجَ النَّبِيِّ، صلى الله عليه وسلم كُنَّ يَخْرُجْنَ بِاللَّيْلِ إِذَا تَبَرَّزْنَ إِلَى الْمَنَاصِعِ ـ وَهُوَ صَعِيدٌ أَفْيَحُ ـ فَكَانَ عُمَرُ يَقُولُ لِلنَّبِيِّ صلى الله عليه وسلم احْجُبْ نِسَاءَكَ‏.‏ فَلَمْ يَكُنْ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم يَفْعَلُ، فَخَرَجَتْ سَوْدَةُ بِنْتُ زَمْعَةَ زَوْجُ النَّبِيِّ صلى الله عليه وسلم لَيْلَةً مِنَ اللَّيَالِي عِشَاءً، وَكَانَتِ امْرَأَةً طَوِيلَةً، فَنَادَاهَا عُمَرُ أَلاَ قَدْ عَرَفْنَاكِ يَا سَوْدَةُ‏.‏ حِرْصًا عَلَى أَنْ يَنْزِلَ الْحِجَابُ، فَأَنْزَلَ اللَّهُ آيَةَ الْحِجَابِ‏.‏ )
[ al-Bukhari Book of Asking Permission #257/al-Bukhari 6240
/Sahih al-Bukhari Vol. 8, Book 74, Hadith 257 ]
As we see here though Umar constantly asking Muhammad for some verse regarding veiling women but Muhammad was delaying it , until the night that Umar recognized Sauda bint Zam’a Muhammad’s wife .he called her that he recognized who she is : ” (He did this with the hope that the verses related to veil would be revealed.) ‘A’isha said: Allah, the Exalted and Glorious, then revealed the verses pertaining to veil.” ( ‏ حِرْصًا عَلَى
أَنْ يُنْزِلَ الْحِجَابَ ‏.‏ قَالَتْ عَائِشَةُ فَأَنْزَلَ اللَّهُ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ الْحِجَابَ ‏. ) You can find the whole event is in this sahih hadith:
Muslim Book of Greetings #5397/ Muslim 2170 d /Sahih Muslim Vol. 5, Book 26, Hadith 5397 and Sahih Muslim 26:5398
Here we clearly see the idea and suggestion for hijab came from Umar . Muhammad and his Allah had no clue to put that law until Umar suggested it to Allah , and For Umar finally according to this hadith he and Allah came to agreement on hijab: ” ….Umar said, “I agreed with Allah in three things,” or said, “My Lord agreed with me in three things. I said, ‘O Allah’s Apostle! Would that you took the station of Abraham as a place of prayer.’ I also said, ‘O Allah’s Apostle! Good and bad persons visit you! Would that you ordered the Mothers of the believers to cover themselves with veils.’ So the Divine Verses of Al-Hijab (i.e. veiling of the women) were revealed… ” [al-Bukhari Book of Prophetic Commentary #10/Sahih al-Bukhari Vol. 6, Book 60, Hadith 10]
It looks like Apparantly after this incident ( Umar recognizing Muhammad’s wife , Sauda bint Zam’a and calling her ) Muhammad started putting blame on his wives , and Umar supporting Muhammad on that blame game and started advising wives,here is the rest of story:”.. I came to know that the Prophet had blamed some of his wives so I entered upon them and said, ‘You should either stop (troubling the Prophet ) or else Allah will give His Apostle better wives than you.’ When I came to one of his wives, she said to me, ‘O ‘Umar! Does Allah’s Apostle haven’t what he could advise his wives with, that you try to advise them?’ ” Thereupon Allah revealed:– “It may be, if he divorced you (all) his Lord will give him instead of you, wives better than you Muslims (who submit to Allah)..” (66.5) …”
After pushing and negotiating with Allah and establishing the law of hijab apparantly Umar did not stop his bad habit and as repeated offender he was at it again. According to Sahih Bukhari (6,60,318) the hijab law could not stop Umar and he started chasing women at night again , Sahih Bukhari had the story in his hadith : “…Narrated Aisha: Sauda (the wife of the Prophet) went out to answer the call of nature after it was made obligatory (for all the Muslims ladies) to observe the veil. She was a fat huge lady, and everybody who knew her before could recognize her. So ‘Umar bin Al-Khattab saw her and said, “O Sauda! By Allah, you cannot hide yourself from us, so think of a way by which you should not be recognized on going out …..” . Saudia complains to Muhammad about the situation , then revelation came from Allah with resolution and answer to Muhammad, he said :”…. “You (women) have been allowed to go out for your needs”The same story has been narrated by Sahih Muslim 26:5395 with the similar conclusion .Muhammad said :” Permission has been granted to you that you may go out for your needs. “. As we see the respond for complaining that Umar was chasing women and bothering them was that Muhammad allows his women to go out for their need !!!!
Here are more sources for more info:
=() al-Bukhari Book of Asking Permission #255
al-Bukhari 6238
Sahih al-Bukhari Vol. 8, Book 74, Hadith 255
=() al-Bukhari Book of Marriage #95
al-Bukhari 5166
Sahih al-Bukhari Vol. 7, Book 62, Hadith 95
=() al-Bukhari Book of Ablution (Wudu) #148
al-Bukhari 146
Sahih al-Bukhari Vol. 1, Book 4, Hadith 148
=() al-Bukhari Book of Asking Permission #257
al-Bukhari 6240
Sahih al-Bukhari Vol. 8, Book 74, Hadith 257
=() al-Bukhari 6240
al-Bukhari Vol. 8, Book 74, Hadith 257
=() Muslim Book of Greetings #5397
2170 d
5, Book 26, 5397 /5398

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Ex Muslim MSL