Widow going for hajj or `umrah with minor children.
A widow who has 2 sons aged 11 and 12 respectively. Can she travel alone with the two of them for hajj or umrah?
Allah reward you..
Bismillaahir Rahmaanir Raheem.
Alhamdulillaahi was salaatu was salaamu `alaa Rasoolillaahi wa `alaa aalihi wa sahbihi wa man waalaahu, wa ba`d:
In short, no it is not permissible.
The Sharee`ah has prohibited a woman to travel a distance of three days and nights (equivalent to 48 miles or 77 kilometres) without a Mahram, Hadhrat `Abdullaah Ibn `Umar Radhiallaahu `Anhu reports that Rasoolullaah Sallallaahu `Alayhi Wa Sallam said: “It is not permissible for a woman who believes in Allaah and the last day to travel a distance of three days or more, but that her father, or son,or husband, or brother or some Mahram (e.g. Father in law) should be with her.” – Saheeh Muslim.[i]
In the case mentioned, even though both sons are Mahrams, they are not Baaligh (have not reached puberty), and therefore they do not qualify as travel Mahrams, because Buloogh is one of the conditions for a person to be considered a Mahram, as Imaam Ibn Nujaym Rahimahullaah states in Al-Bahrur Raa’iq: “It (the ability to be a Mahram) does not apply to a fire worshipper who believes it is permissible to marry her (i.e. his Mahram), nor a Muslim relative from whom one is not safe, nor a child who has not reached puberty, nor a madman.” [ii]
Hajj will not become Fardh upon a woman that does not have a Mahram, Hadhrat `Abdullaah Ibn `Abbaas Radhiallaahu `Anhu narrates that Rasoolullaah Sallallaahu `Alayhi Wa Sallam said: “A woman should never go for Hajj but that a Mahram should accompany her.” – Sunan Ad-Daaraqutni. [iii]
Imaam Al-Kaasaani Rahimahullaah states in Badaa`ius Sanaa`i: “As for those conditions (for Hajj to become obligatory) that are specific to women, there are two of them, one is that her husband or a Mahram accompanies her, if she does not have either of the two (a husband or a Mahram), then Hajj is not obligatory upon her.” [iv]
It is stated in Al-Fataawaa Al-Hindiyyah: “Of it (the conditions for Hajj to become obligatory upon a female) is that a woman should have a Mahram, whether she is young or old, if there is a distance of three days journey between her and Makkah.” [v]
So if a widow has no Mahaarim other than her two prepubescent sons, then Hajj will not become Fardh upon her, and she will not be permitted to go even if she has the money and physical ability etc to go for Hajj. Hajj will only become Fardh upon her once one of them reaches puberty and she still meets all the conditions of Hajj.
And Allaah knows best.
Ubaidullah Ibn Adam Aal-Ebrahim.
Checked and approved by:
Mufti Rashid Ahmed Moosagie.
[i]لاَ يَحِلُّ لاِمْرَأَةٍ تُؤْمِنُ بِاللَّهِ وَالْيَوْمِ الآخِرِ أَنْ تُسَافِرَ سَفَرًا يَكُونُ ثَلاَثَةَ أَيَّامٍ فَصَاعِدًا إِلاَّ وَمَعَهَا أَبُوهَا أَوِ ابْنُهَا أَوْ زَوْجُهَا أَوْ أَخُوهَا أَوْ ذُو مَحْرَمٍ مِنْهَا
[ii]وَلَا يَرِدُ عَلَيْهِ الْمَجُوسِيُّ الَّذِي يَعْتَقِدُ إبَاحَةَ نِكَاحِهَا وَالْمُسْلِمُ الْقَرِيبُ إذَا لَمْ يَكُنْ مَأْمُونًا وَالصَّبِيُّ الَّذِي لَمْ يَحْتَلِمْ وَالْمَجْنُونُ
[iii]لا تحجن امرأة إلا ومعها ذو محرم
[iv]وَأَمَّا الَّذِي يَخُصُّ النِّسَاءَ فَشَرْطَانِ: أَحَدُهُمَا أَنْ يَكُونَ مَعَهَا زَوْجُهَا أَوْ مَحْرَمٌ لَهَا فَإِنْ لَمْ يُوجَدْ أَحَدُهُمَا لَا يَجِبُ عَلَيْهَا الْحَجُّ.