Q. As-Salam Alaikum, I am Saima Kadri – and my question is that, why there are no women Prophets in Islam.

A. (Dr. Zakir): Sister has posed a question – why are there no ‘Women Prophets’ in Islam? If by ‘Prophets’ you mean, that a person who receives the message and who acts like a leader to the people, then I can say for sure, that in Islam we have got no ‘Women Prophets’. And I think it is right, because if a woman has to be a Prophet – The Qur’an clearly states, that man is the leader of the family. So if the man is the leader in the family… how can he lead the… how can a woman lead over the people? Come to the second part – a Prophet has to even lead the congregational prayers. And as I said earlier, that there are certain postures like Qayam, Ruku, Sujud, standing, bowing and doing the Sujud… prostration – and which, if a Woman Prophet does, the congrega­tion behind, will get disturbed. There are situations like… the Prophet has to meet with the common man, very regularly. If it is a Woman Prophet… Islam does not allow intermingling of sexes. If the Prophet is a lady… she… and if she gets pregnant – but natural, she will not be able to do her duties for a few months. If she has children, it will be difficult for her, to do the duty of the mother as well as the Prophet. And a man is more capable of doing the duty of the Prophet, and the father… as compared to a woman, who does the duty of a mother, as well as the Prophet. But if you mean that a Proph­et is a person who is chosen, and who is pure and holy, then there are several examples – and the best example I can quote is, of Bibi Mariyam (may Allah be pleased with her). It is mentioned in Surah Maryam, Ch. No. 3, Verse No. 42… (Arabic)… ‘And behold the angels said to Mary’. (Arabic)… ‘That Allah has chosen thee, and purified thee, and purified above the women of all nations’. If you mean ‘a Prophet’ is a person who is chosen and purified, then we have the example of Bibi Mariyam (May Allah be pleased with her), who was the mother of Jesus( May peace be upon her). We have other examples – If you read in Surah Tahrim, Ch. No. 66, Verse No. 11, it says that…  ‘As an example for the believers, is the wife of the Pharoah’…  Bibi Asiya (May Allah be pleased with her), she prayed to Allah (SWT)…‘Make for me, in nearness to Thee, a Mansion in the Garden, and save me from the Pharaoh, and its evil things’. Imag­ine… she was the wife, of the most powerful person of that time…Pharaoh – and she rejects all the luxuries, and asks for Allah (SWT), in exchange…a Mansion in the Garden. According to Islam, there are 4 Prophet women, besides Bibi Mariyam and Bibi Asiya (may Allah be pleased with them) – The other the examples are of Bibi Fatema and Bibi Khatija, (May Allah be pleased with them both). Hope that answers the question.

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