Madinat al-Muslimeen Islamic Message Board
|Intermingling of the sexes|
|03/07/01 at 10:01:05|
What is the Sunnah on the intermingling of the sexes when couples gather at a Muslim's home? I was invited to a brother's home for Eid. I went alone, as my wife is not a Muslim. The men went into the living room and the women stayed in the kitchen. At one point my brother at whose home I was, called to me from the kitchen, and when I went in, his wife grabbed her veil and pulled it across her face. Of course I was averting my gaze.
My wife has said to me on numerous occasions that I should invite my brothers over, but I just avoided the issue or changed the subject. Finally she asked me if the reason I did not invite them over was because I was ashamed of her.
My concern is actually though, that she is not going to "handle" the fact that she is not welcome in whichever room the brothers and I congregate. In fact, I told her that at my brother's home, the women and men stayed in separate rooms. She was pretty shocked to hear this and asked, "So, they NEVER speak to each other the whole time you are together???" I kind of did my old change-the-subject routine at this point.
So, my question is, is this Islamic or cultural (my brother is American but his wife is from Bangledesh)? What actually are the guidelines for situations where married couples gather at a Muslim's home?
|Re: Intermingling of the sexes|
|03/07/01 at 11:48:12|
Separating the sexes at social gatherings is an Islamic practice and not a cultural one, although, some cultural practices could come into play-but the separation itself is Islamic. I know that whenever Aisha (r) spoke with a companion, it was behind a physical partition (a curtain, I think). I also remember that when the prophet, sallaho alayhe wa salam, used to slaughter an animal, he would send some of the meat to Khadija's (r) friends homes (vs. having them come over and eat from it). And also, we all know that we should lower our gazes in the presence of the opposite sex, so, wouldn't separation make it easier for everyone??? Of course, these are just my specualtions and I will have to find the evidence from a scholar. When I do, I will post it, insha'Allah.
Since there is such a high level of modesty displayed for both men and women when they are around one another, I think it would be difficult to unwind while your all sitting together. Often times, when my husband and I visit someone, the men and women are so much separated, that the women take off their hijab. We laugh, joke, talk about many things (religion, politics, community, marriage, children, education, etc.)an` have a good time. Those things would be harder to do when your in a room with brothers. Likewise, I'm sure men appreciate time to unwind with their brothers.
Individual posts do not necessarily reflect the views of Jannah.org, Islam, or all Muslims. All trademarks and copyrights on this page are owned by their respective owners. Comments are owned by the poster and may not be used without consent of the author.The rest © Jannah.Org