Q: I am writing to Your Eminence about a practice which has raised great confusion in my mind. This practice is known as
mushaharah and is prevalent among women.
Mushaharah is one of many prevailing practices and customs in our society. Were I to enumerate them all, you will find that we are only Muslims by name, and have only knowledge of some aspects of Islam. How does Mushaharah take place?1. When a man returns from a journey or comes from the market, or elsewhere, and enters suddenly upon a woman breastfeeding her newborn, her milk will stop and she will not be able to breastfeed her baby unless she sees that man's nape.2. If the same man sees a recently circumcised child, the child's wound will not heal unless a silver or gold ring is hung on a string and placed around the child's neck. If the child is a girl, she will not get pregnant in the future unless she sees another circumcised girl. (Part No. 2; Page No. 47) 3. When a woman wants to wean her baby, she must do this at the end of the lunar month, not before that, otherwise the child will be slim and weak. Also, this should be done in secret.4. If a woman has an abortion after which she does not give birth, it is said that she is Mushaharah. In order to become pregnant again, she must see another woman who recently have had an abortion. The latter would not become pregnant again until the same process is repeated, and so on.5. Some of the forms
of Mushaharah in marriage are the following:
a) If the bride does not become pregnant, she must see the pen which was used by the marriage official in concluding her marriage.B) It is desirable to conclude the marriage contract at the end of the month.C)
a string of seven knots called `Aqau'a is hung until the new month starts for fear of Mushaharah.
I apologize for this long letter although there are many other similar practices and beliefs.My question is: Do we find any of these practices in the Shari`ah (Islamic law)? If the answer is no, why do these practices continue in such an overt manner and take many different forms? I have failed to convince (Part No. 2; Page No. 48) people that such practices are illusions that weaken our `Aqidah (creed) and Iman (belief) in Allah (Glorified and Exalted be He). Please enlighten us, and may Allah be merciful to you.
All these practices, which are known as "Mushaharah", are only illusions believed in by commoners. It is not permissible to take them into consideration because they are false beliefs and forbidden actions. Muslims should seek the help of Allah and place their trust in Him in all their affairs and needs. Allah says:
And whosoever puts his trust in Allâh, then He will suffice him.
Moreover, such practices must be rejected, stopped, and prevented. People should know how these practices oppose the `Aqidah and should be informed of the true `Aqidah. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said,
"If Allah guides one person through you, it will be better for you than red (expensive) camels."
May Allah grant us success. May peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family, and Companions.