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Female Circumcision

 

What place does it have in Islam?

Is it compulsory or Sunnah?

 

 

The Western media makes a big fuss about it and calls it "Female Genital Mutilation".

 

How correct is this?

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Question

i want to know about female circumcision in detail.

 
 
Answer

 

In the name of Allāh, Most Gracious, Most Merciful
Assalāmu ῾alaykum wa Rahmatullāhi Wabarakātuh

 

We acknowledge receipt of query and your answer follows hereunder;

Female circumcision has been a very controversial issue for last few decades even among those who had been performing from former times. Apart from its scientific views lots of scholars have been intensely arguing the value and religious views of female circumcision.

 

In Islam, circumcision is considered to be ‘fitrah’ which means the natural character and instinctive temperament of human being.

 

It has been narrated by Abu Huraira (Radhiyallahu ‘anhu) that Prophet Muhammad (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi Wassallam) said, “Five practices are characteristics of the Fitrah: circumcision, shaving the pubic region, clipping the nails and cutting the moustaches short.” [Sahih Al-Bukhari]

 

Circumcision has also been regarded as the sign of Islam; to the extent that if a dead body is found, the manner of verifying that he was a Muslim is to see if he’s circumcised.

 

Now before delving profound into the question of female circumcision, we would like to make it lucid that “female circumcision” means removing the prepuce of the clitoris which is situated above the opening of the urethra, not the clitoris itself. The Sunnah is not to remove all of it, but only a part.

 

 

Umm Atiyyah al-Ansariyyah (Radhiyallahu ‘anha) narrates that a woman used to perform circumcision in Medina. The Prophet said to her: Do not cut severely as that is better for a woman and more desirable for a husband. [Sunan Abu Dawud]

 

 

“Circumcision is Sunnah for men, and it is an honour for women, but it is not obligatory for them.

 

وختان المرأة ليس سنة بل مكرمة للرجال وقيل سنة

( قوله وختان المرأة ) الصواب خفاض ، لأنه لا يقال في حق المرأة ختان وإنما خفاض حموي ( قوله بل مكرمة للرجال ) لأنه ألذ في الجماع زيلعي ( قوله وقيل سنة ) جزم به البزازي معللا بأنه نص على أن الخنثى تختن ، ولو كان ختانها مكرمة لم تختن الخنثى ، لاحتمال أن تكون امرأة ولكن لا كالسنة في حق الرجال ا هـ .

أقول : وختان الخنثى لاحتمال كونه رجلا ، وختان الرجل لا يترك فلذا كان سنة احتياطا ولا يفيد ذلك سنيته للمرأة تأمل

[Fatawa Raheemiyah Vol: 6 Pg: 261 (Darul Ishaa’at)]

 

 

Imam Ahmad bin Hambal (Rahmatullahi ‘alayhi) said: For men it is more strictly required, but for women it is less strictly required.” [Al-Mughni by Ibn Qudamah (Rahmatullahi ‘alayhi)]

 

 

We conclude from aforesaid discussion that “female circumcision” will be regarded as Mustahab and Sunnah for the male.

 

 

And Allāh Ta῾āla Knows Best

Wassalāmu ῾alaykum

Ml. Mohammad Ashhad bin Said

Correspondence Iftā Student, Mauritius

 

Checked and Approved by:

Mufti Ebrahim Desai

Dārul Iftā, Madrasah In῾āmiyyah

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Does female circumcision have its place in Islaam

 

Question

Assalaamu alaykum

dear mufti saab,
can you please advice me of the islamic ruiling(from the four madhabs if possible) on female circumcision as a convert alhamdulilah these questions have arisen within my family and also with other muslim sisters.

 

also could you please advise me if there is any daleel as to wheather our beloved nabi salallahu alahie wasalaams daughters(radiyallahu anhum)were or were not

jazakallahu khair

 

walykumusalaam wr wb

 

Answer

Bismillah

Al-jawab billahi at-taufeeq (the answer with Allah’s guidance)

 

Female circumcision is supported by no decisive textual evidence. Only male circumcision is practiced, due to the authentic evidence in the Sunnah that it is part of the natural way (Fitrah).

 

Female circumcision is simply a regional custom in the places where it is practiced. We must then take into consideration that many medical professionals consider it to have detrimental affects for the girls who undergo the operation. On that basis, it would be impermissible to allow this custom to continue. As, bringing harm to oneself is unlawful in Islam.

 

In a Hadith it is mentioned:

Circumcision is Sunnah for men and an honorable thing for women. [Musnad Ahmad (19794)]

 

Due to the weakness of this hadith and other Hadiths that refer to female circumcision with some of their narrators being known for deceptiveness and others whose narrations carry no weight scholars of Islamic Law have differed widely regarding its legal ruling.

 

1. In the Hanafî school of law, female circumcision is permissible within itself but not considered to be a Sunnah. (i.e. no religious virtue). (Shami Fatawaa Rahimiyyah, Page 261, Vol. 6)

 

2. It is considered a preferred act (Mandub) for women in the Maliki school of law. They rely upon the Hadith of Umm `Atiyyah for this ruling. ( Bulghah al-Salik li-Aqrab al-Masâlik and Ashal al-Madarik Sharh Irshad al-Salik)

 

3. In the Shaf’i school of law, circumcision is considered an obligation for both men and women. This is the official ruling of that school of thought. Some Shaf`i scholars express the view that circumcision is obligatory for men and merely Sunnah for women. ( al-Majmu`)

 

4. In the Hanbali school of law, circumcision is obligatory for men and merely an honorable thing for women. It is not obligatory for them. The Hanbali jurist Ibn Qudamah observes: This is the view of many people of knowledge. Imam Ahmad said that it is more emphatic for men. (al-Mughni (1/115))

 

Lastly, I would like to mention that there are no recorded evidences of circumcision done on the Prophet (Sallallahu alaihi wa sallam)’s daughters.

 

Please also refer to: http://qa.muftisays.com/index.php?viewpage=viewQA&question=1872

 

And Only Allah Ta’ala Knows Best

Moulana Qamruz Zaman

London, UK

 

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Q. Is circumcision in Islam compulsory or sunnah? Other than hygiene being the main factor for its occurrence, are there any other factors? Also, why do some countries allow female circumcision? And what are some reasons why females are not circumcised?

 

A. Circumcision in Islam is not compulsory. It is Mustahab (commendable) for males, and is in accordance to the teachings of Islam.

 

Female circumcision as done in some countries, is not based on a religious practice or law. It is based upon the customs and practices of the females living in that country.

 

Females may not chose to do circumcision because it is not a religious law and teaching for them in Islam, and it also does not have any factor of hygienic for women.

 

And Allah knows best.

Mufti Waseem Khan

 

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Question

Assalamualaikum

 

I wanted to know about circumcision in Islam is it done one women?  I heard it is a practice of the Shafi’i, is it true?  If it is where does it come from?  Is it from the time of Ibrahim (A.S.)?  I read that Sarah (A.S.) did it for Haajirah (A.S.)

 

Answer

 

It is correct that according to Imam Shafii (R.A.A.) that circumcision of a female is a compulsory act.  What must be considered is that the circumcision should not exceed the limits, thus causing harm.  According to Imam Abu Hanifah (R.A.A.) it is commended that females should be circumcised but is not a necessity.  Circumcision of a male commenced from the time of Ebrahim (A.S.).  We are not apprised from which point in Islamic history did the circumcision of females begin nor did we come across any narration with regards to Sarah (A.S.) circumcising Haajirah (A.S.) in any reliable Kitaab.  (Al-Majmoo, Sharhul Muhath-thab, Vol. 1, Page 349)

 

 

And Allah Taala knows best

Mufti Muhammad Ashraf

Darul Iftaa

Jameah Mahmoodiyah

Springs

www.mahmoodiyah.org.za

[email protected]

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Female Circumcision From a Muslim Doctor

The western media has made a big fuss about female circumcision and called it Female genital mutilation. However, what they don’t tell us is that the commonest operation done for non medical reason in the uk for women’s private parts is an operation fancifully called clitoral hood reduction and labioplasty!!

 

Having spoken few years ago to Malay shafii doctors where most girls have circumcision as a girl, they tell me this is exactly what the western plastic surgeon and gynaecologist do during clitoral hood reduction and labioplasty – young girls from 14 years to ladies of 45 are paying £1500-2500 to have this done privately and is also done in the NHS. If you google the word clitoridotomy or clitoral hood reduction and labioplasty – first few results are privately advertised clinics where these ‘operations’ are done by GMC certified doctors!!!

One gynaecologist told me he does about 5- 10 a week privately and takes home £800 to £1000 per patient as his fees!

 

The article (1) below is by an African lady but gives us insight of the apparent double standard- apologies as it is long but is very insightful. She had classical circumcision and witnessed the above operation on tv and writes boldly about how what her grandmother did on her and used to do as female circumcision and the operation she witnessed are same.

 

Sadly, Of course female genital mutilation where women have their private parts disfigured does happen in Africa and I have seen patients who cannot pass urine and stools properly because of this or cannot have babies but that is not what Prophet ﷺ taught us.

Please read these article below in sha Allah. There are no forbidden pictures in the article except patient in gown in bbc article but without any nudity.

 

Ulama of Haq should be aware of this double standard.

 

1. http://fgcdailynews.blogspot.co.uk/2009/07/designer-vaginas-is-female-circumcision.html?m=1

(Article is produced in the next post)

 

2. Bbc article about this operation

http://m.bbc.co.uk/news/health-18947106

 

Tafseer Raheemi

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The Female Genital Mutilation / Cutting (FGM/C) News Blog

 

This blog posts any and all news related to Female Genital Cutting (FGC). It tracks only content that discusses FGC as a main subject. The page is designed as a resource for researchers and those who want to keep up to date on this issue without slogging through google alerts or news pages. Original authors are responsible for their content. To suggest content please write to [email protected] FGC is also called female genital mutilation or FGM; FGM/C; or female circumcision.

 
 
Tuesday, August 11, 2009
Designer Vaginas: Is Female Circumcision Coming Out of the Closet?
 
Reposted from July 2, 2009

By Gbemisola Olujobi

As a circumcised and sexually fulfilled African woman, when I consider the fuss that female circumcision has attracted to Africa over the years and the wind of labiaplasties and genital rejuvenations currently sweeping across Europe and America, I cannot help but ask in the words of Dr. Deborah Tolman, professor of social welfare at Hunter College School of Social Work, “What happened in the last three years to make [these] women’s labias so big that they can’t walk around with them?”

I was watching an episode of “Dr. 90210” on E! Entertainment Television recently. A young American woman was getting a labiaplasty and clitoral hood reduction. She said her labia “didn’t look nice” and her clitoral hood was “uncomfortable,” especially when she was having sex. I didn’t know what to think.

I was circumcised (read labiaplasty and clitoral hood reduction) when I was 9 days old, in line with the tradition of the Yoruba of western Nigeria. And thanks to the “enlightenment” of Euro-American NGOs, I grew up lamenting what I thought was my irreparable loss and thinking I would definitely have been better off with my genitals intact. Imagine my confusion at the spectacle before me on television.

I have since seen more labiaplasties and clitoral hood reductions on “Dr. 90210.” I am an avid fan of the show and confess to being totally smitten with the effervescent Dr. Robert Rey. But the more of these procedures I see, the more I ... well, wonder. What are labiaplasty and clitoral hood reduction if not female circumcision? Female circumcision, also known as female genital cutting (FGC) or the more demonized female genital mutilation (FGM), is defined by the World Health Organization as “all procedures involving partial or total removal of the external female genitalia or other injury to the female genital organs whether for cultural, religious or other non-therapeutic reasons.”

FGC is practiced throughout the world, but seems to be more widely practiced in Africa than anywhere else. Not all ethnic groups in Africa practice female circumcision, though it is found in 28 of the continent’s 53 countries.

The WHO identifies three broad types of female circumcision. Type I circumcision is the partial or total removal of the clitoris and/or the prepuce or clitoral hood. Type II circumcision is “partial or total removal of the clitoris and the labia minora, with or without excision of the labia majora. Type III circumcision involves narrowing of the vaginal orifice with creation of a covering seal by cutting and repositioning the labia minora and/or the labia majora, with or without excision of the clitoris. This type of circumcision is also known as infibulation or pharaonic circumcision. It is the most extensive form of FGM, and accounts for about 10 percent of all FGM procedures identified in Africa.

And what are labiaplasty, clitoral hood reduction, vaginoplasty and the other procedures classified as female genital cosmetic surgery? Labiaplasty is plastic surgery of the labia majora and/or the labia minora, which are the external folds of skin surrounding the structures of the vulva. The procedure involves reducing the size of one or both sets of labia. Clitoral hood reduction is an operation which repositions the protruding clitoris and reduces the length and projection of the clitoral hood. Vaginoplasty is the surgical modification of the female vagina. The most frequent vaginoplasty procedure is the narrowing of the vaginal opening to make it firmer.

These operations involve cutting that includes full or partial amputation of the labia or clitoris, as well as procedures to narrow or tighten the vagina—all hallmarks of circumcision and infibulation.

Now, from what I understand, some Euro-American women are becoming so disturbed by the appearance of their genitalia that they are asking plastic surgeons to modify them. But how did this new worry start? Or, as professor Tolman puts it, “What happened in the last three years to make [these] women’s labias so big that they can’t walk around with them?”

Physicians and mainstream mass media report that the widespread viewing of pornography has increased demand for labiaplasty. As more people see the shortened labia of pornographic actresses, they are getting the idea that trim genitals are the ideal. Human sexuality expert Bonnie Zylbergold argues in an article that women are getting the HD version of their vulvas outside a biology class for the first time. And “while women might not be trading notes on their vaginal proportions,” says Zylbergold, “they have become increasingly comfortable with mainstream pornography and that leads to one dimensional representations of what vulvas look like.”

Just as the phenomenon of Playboy magazine in the 1950s spread the craze for breast enlargements in the ’60s and ’70s, an increasing number of women are going to plastic surgeons with pictures of spread-eagled models in magazines such as Playboy and Penthouse and saying, “I want those clit and lips,” very much as some women have been ordering Angelina Jolie’s mouth and Jennifer Lopez’s butt in surgeons’ “supermarkets.”

Call it “labia envy,” says New York writer Louisa Kamps. A host of plastic surgeons are aggressively offering women relief from this new form of envy.

Kamps quotes Dr. Gary Alter, a Beverly Hills plastic surgeon, as saying: “Some women have this feeling they’re not that pretty down there. If you really think you’re deformed, you’re going to be less open to a sexual relationship. Before, it was the dark ages, because nobody really cared, or knew, what it looked like. But now, with Penthouse and all these magazines that show vaginas—I mean, they really show it—you have women, not just men, looking. And they start making aesthetic judgments.”

Many surgeons are against these procedures and some have even called the doctors who perform them “fraudulent.” Among those who disagree with that criticism is Dr. Scott W. Mosser, a board-certified plastic surgeon based in San Francisco who has been performing labiaplasties for the past four years. He insists that anything that is distracting enough to interfere with a person’s quality of life or lifestyle is something that should be addressed.

Sex expert Zylbergold asks, “What’s with all the women who truly feel as though FGCS [female genital cosmetic surgery] will better their quality of life? Are we simply to ignore them? Tell them that they don’t really know, or understand for that matter, what they really want?”

One woman who responded to a post on labiaplasty at colbertnation.com wrote: “I used to talk about this [surgery] all the time. There are times I still want to do it. My right inner labium is larger than the left, even larger than the outer labia (it looks like a tongue sticking out). It’s bothered me my whole sexual life and I always used to talk about getting it removed so it looks more symmetrical. Not to mention it sometimes gets stuck during intercourse and is painful every now and then. I even threaten to do it myself. I can see why some women might want to get it done, and I feel if that’s the way they want it, fine. Porn might have something to do with it, but I think there are women out there who want to get it for their own satisfaction.”

Researcher Karen Roberts McNamara reports that accounts of this medical trend in mainstream media quote doctors and patients alike as describing the new beauty standard for the vulva as “neat” and “clean.” McNamara cites a Boston Globe article in which a 25-year-old student from California, a patient of Dr. David Matlock, describes her postsurgery genitalia as “cleaner” and “more hygienic.”

Acclaimed champion of what he calls “vaginal rejuvenation,” Dr. Matlock proffers what he considers to be the definition of vulvar beauty as a “nice, clean look.” He claims that his laser rejuvenation will “effectively enhance the vaginal muscle tone, strength and control, decrease the internal and external vaginal diameters, as well as build up and strengthen the perineal body.”

Now, unless something really drastic happens to make women like the one at the ColbertNation site accept their asymmetrical and protruding genitalia and ignore the Matlocks and Alters, labiaplasty and clitoral hood reductions (call them clit and lip jobs, if you will) may yet become the staples that nose and boob jobs have metamorphosed into.

According to the California Surgical Institute, labiaplasty has become more common. In the United Kingdom, the number of labiaplasties doubled between 2000 and 2005. And in Germany, as psychologist Borken Ada Hagen and gynecologist Heribert Kentenich report in the journal Obstetrics and Gynecology, labiaplasty (known there as labienreduktion) has become the third leading cosmetic plastic surgery—right after face-lifts and breast augmentation.

Patient satisfaction has also been significant. A recent two-year study on 407 labiaplasty patients between the ages of 13 and 63 indicates that they appear to be happy with the procedure. Dr. Alter, the Beverly Hills plastic surgeon and urologist, performed a procedure known as the Alter V technique on all 407 women.

According to an article on the study, printed in the December 2008 issue of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, 98 percent of the patients reported they would have the surgery again. Seventy percent reported increased self-esteem, while 71 percent claimed to have improved sex lives. The study found only 4 percent of subjects reporting complications.

So where does this leave Africans who have been hounded for years by Euro-American NGOs and donor agencies to abandon “the barbaric and primitive practice” known as female circumcision?

Could it be that some ancient Africans saw flesh and blood versions of these before-and-after photos and decided, long before what is now known as cosmetic surgery came into being, that women would be better served with something close to what is now being called the “Toronto Trim.”

The term comes from Toronto plastic surgeon Robert Stubbs, by way of health reporter Krista Foss. Stubbs has done more than 205 labia minora shortenings on women aged 14 to 60. His style of trimming the hood of the clitoris as well as the lips of the vagina has been nicknamed the Toronto Trim.

The appropriately named Dr. Stubbs reports that these trims are not done on women who experience pain from their labia. Rather, they are done for cosmetic reasons. “Women don’t want to compete with men with something large between their legs. They want something small, neat and tidy and tucked up out of the way.” Again with the “neat and tidy.”

Linda, a woman in her mid-20s, said her labia minora had always bothered her. “It was physically uncomfortable, and I didn’t find it very aesthetically pleasing,” she said. She went to Stubbs and got a Toronto Trim for $4,500.

Patricia, a 32-year-old mother of two from New York City who had her labia shortened, also had worried that “it was all hanging.” So she looked for a surgeon, who fixed it, and she says “it’s nice and it’s neat now.”

Bernard Stern, the Florida doctor who performed Patricia’s labiaplasty, says he has operated on all kinds of women, including Las Vegas showgirls, exotic dancers, a Playmate of the Year, doctors, nurses, midwives, attorneys, professional athletes, marathoners, junior Olympians, equestrians, Pilates instructors and personal trainers. His patients have included an 82-year-old and a 16-year-old, as well as a 19-year-old and her 40-year-old mother.

Stern claims that most of his patients could not live with their genitals. “Quite honestly, most of the people that come in here have stuff that’s just unbelievable. There’s no doubt, I mean [the labia are] totally uneven, one side’s huge, the other’s not. ... For some of them, this is a life-changing procedure.”

According to the surgeon, “The women feel undesirable or unpretty. Even if nobody sees it, they see it.” Stern also claims that for many, a labiaplasty or vaginal tightening can “save their marriage.”

Now, my grandmother performed these “procedures” all her life. As early as 5 a.m., mothers would line up in our backyard with their baby sons and daughters to be circumcised by her expert hands. Among the Yoruba of Nigeria, circumcision is done in early infancy.

Grandma took special care and pride with female babies. She would do her job deftly and pass the screaming baby to her mother saying, “Your daughter has been beautified.” The satisfied mother would then go back home and cook a celebratory chicken feast to mark the occasion. For some reason, no such feasts were cooked to mark a male baby’s circumcision.

So, how is my grandmother different from these board-certified plastic surgeons and urologists?

I cannot defend the circumcision knives Grandma inherited from her grandmother as being sterile. I also cannot claim that the palm oil she used to soothe the circumcision wound, the lime juice she used to “sanitize” the circumcision site, and the snail slime she swore would make the wound heal properly were up to WHO standards. But when I read the reports of labiaplasty patients, I cannot help but have a proud smile on my face when I recall my grandmother’s declarations after every baby girl’s circumcision: “She has been beautified and made clean.” How could she have known that this was going to be the refrain of board-certified surgeons in Europe and America after “beautifying” their women patients?

As it turns out, the reasons given for female circumcision on the one hand and female genital cosmetic surgery on the other are not totally different. Practitioners of female circumcision couch its functions in culture and religious obligation. According to professor Aisha Samad Matias, they usually say things like “It makes you clean, beautiful, better, sweet-smelling,” or “You will be able to marry, be presentable to your husband, able to satisfy and keep your husband, able to conceive and bear children.”

These reasons are not far from those given by women in Euro-America who seek the “nice, clean and neat” ideal of vulvar beauty through labiaplasties and clitoral hood reductions.

According to Dr. Virginia Braun, a psychologist at the University of Auckland who specializes in women’s health and sexuality, the narratives of women who have undergone FGM and FGCS are similar. In both cases, Braun argues, women say, “It is important to me to have genitals that look normal, that look appropriate, that are right.”

The big difference between female circumcision and FGCS hovers around self-consent and voluntarism. A great fuss is made about the rights of female circumcision “victims” by activists who see it as a form of child abuse or gender oppression. Writer Ifeyinwa Iweriebor, however, argues that this misrepresentation totally occludes the essential truth: that circumcision is not performed on girls (or on boys) to oppress them or do them any harm. For the practitioners, the procedure is carried out for the noblest of reasons, the best of intentions and in good faith. Maybe all those taboos surrounding female circumcision in African cultures were formulated as a way of ensuring that women went through this painful process to achieve the “nice clean slit” that is now being marketed by Euro-American plastic surgeons.

At the end of the day, it looks like female circumcision and FGCS are done for very much the same reasons. According to Simone Davis, professor and gender theorist at Mount Holyoke College in Massachusetts, among the key motivating factors raised by African women who favor female genital surgeries are beautification, transcendence of shame and the desire to conform. These clearly matter as well to American women seeking cosmetic surgery on their labia, says Davis.

And according to McNamara, although most plastic surgeons usually insist that the women they treat seek the procedure to enhance their own sexual satisfaction, some concede that many women have a consultation at the urging of their husbands, boyfriends or partners who want increased sensation for themselves.

These procedures—vaginoplasty, labiaplasty, hymenoplasty, female circumcision or genital mutilation—all have one thing in common. In McNamara’s words, they “highlight the constructedness of the sexed female subject because her body requires constant maintenance to adhere to gender requirements.”

The good news for labiaplasty patients (read victims) is that though they may regard female circumcision as foreign and incomprehensible, what they are doing is altering their genitalia to conform to a certain set of notions and expectations about what genitalia should look like if they are to be appropriately feminine and desirable.

Remember Dr. Alter? He says, “With Penthouse and all these magazines that show vaginas—I mean, they really show it—you have women, not just men, looking. And they start making aesthetic judgments.”

Such aesthetic judgments are the moving force behind the disciplinary pressures of Western beauty standards. Think of anorexia, bulimia, “a cracker a day” diets, gastric bypass surgery, lap-band surgery and other such horrors. These things are done “voluntarily” and with “self-consent” by people who have been pushed to the wall by societal ideals about what a woman’s body should look like.

So why has the West been demonizing “Africans and their barbaric culture of female circumcision” all these years? In actual fact, according to Davis, one could regard Western female consumers who consent to the procedures and even finance them to be even more oppressed and bound by normative gender than their African counterparts, because there is no actual external policing. In this case, she argues, American women are reminiscent of philosopher Michel Foucault’s “docile bodies,” who, on their own, fill the role of enforcers of their own subjection under the matrix of gender.

Davis quotes Soraya Mire, a Somali filmmaker, as saying, “In America, women pay money that is theirs, and no one else’s, to go to a doctor who cuts them up. ... Western women cut themselves up voluntarily.”

Somalia is a hotspot of infibulation and an action spot for Western anti-circumcision activists. Many Somali women and girls, as well as women and girls from other parts of Africa, have fled their homelands and gone into exile in Europe and America to escape circumcision and infibulation.

Imagine Mire’s confusion, and mine as well. Imagine the indignation of millions of Africans who have been forced to abandon this rite of passage only to wake up one day and find out that Euro-American women are sneaking, behind our backs, to circumcise themselves and their daughters. One of Florida surgeon Bernard Stern’s patients was a 19-year-old whose 40-year-old mother had her labiaplasty six months after she had hers.

This truly is a strange world!
Emma24 at 6:37 AM
 

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Can you elaborate upon the Islamic viewpoint on female circumcision and FGM? How should Muslims react to the issue from a Child safeguarding perspective?


 


In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.


 


As-salāmu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullāhi wa-barakātuh


 


In a nutshell, large number of Muslims in United Kingdom follow the Hanafi School of (Islamic) jurisprudence. Female circumcision is neither Sunnah nor has any religious significance and it is also illegal. Therefore it is impermissible in Britain. Since this is a child safeguarding issue, in a School/Maktab setting teaching and administrative staff need to be alert to the possibility of a girl being at risk of FGM and report it promptly and appropriately as per their child safeguarding policies.


 


We say that the issue cannot be inferred because circumcision for boys is explicitly mentioned and accepted by Scholars while the circumcision of girls is not explicit and scholars have disagreed upon the matter. Mufti Abdullah Patel (HA) concludes that the practise of female circumcision cannot be given religious significance and since it is illegal in Britain, it will not be permissible to carry out female circumcision.


 


https://www.central-mosque.com/index.php/General-Fiqh/fgm.html


 


 


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Question

i want to know about female circumcision in detail.

 
 
Answer

 

In the name of Allāh, Most Gracious, Most Merciful

Assalāmu ῾alaykum wa Rahmatullāhi Wabarakātuh

 

We acknowledge receipt of query and your answer follows hereunder;

Female circumcision has been a very controversial issue for last few decades even among those who had been performing from former times. Apart from its scientific views lots of scholars have been intensely arguing the value and religious views of female circumcision.

 

In Islam, circumcision is considered to be ‘fitrah’ which means the natural character and instinctive temperament of human being.

 

It has been narrated by Abu Huraira (Radhiyallahu ‘anhu) that Prophet Muhammad (Sallallaahu ‘alayhi Wassallam) said, “Five practices are characteristics of the Fitrah: circumcision, shaving the pubic region, clipping the nails and cutting the moustaches short.” [Sahih Al-Bukhari]

 

Circumcision has also been regarded as the sign of Islam; to the extent that if a dead body is found, the manner of verifying that he was a Muslim is to see if he’s circumcised.

 

Now before delving profound into the question of female circumcision, we would like to make it lucid that “female circumcision” means removing the prepuce of the clitoris which is situated above the opening of the urethra, not the clitoris itself. The Sunnah is not to remove all of it, but only a part.

 

 

Umm Atiyyah al-Ansariyyah (Radhiyallahu ‘anha) narrates that a woman used to perform circumcision in Medina. The Prophet said to her: Do not cut severely as that is better for a woman and more desirable for a husband. [Sunan Abu Dawud]

 

 

“Circumcision is Sunnah for men, and it is an honour for women, but it is not obligatory for them.

 

وختان المرأة ليس سنة بل مكرمة للرجال وقيل سنة

( قوله وختان المرأة ) الصواب خفاض ، لأنه لا يقال في حق المرأة ختان وإنما خفاض حموي ( قوله بل مكرمة للرجال ) لأنه ألذ في الجماع زيلعي ( قوله وقيل سنة ) جزم به البزازي معللا بأنه نص على أن الخنثى تختن ، ولو كان ختانها مكرمة لم تختن الخنثى ، لاحتمال أن تكون امرأة ولكن لا كالسنة في حق الرجال ا هـ .

أقول : وختان الخنثى لاحتمال كونه رجلا ، وختان الرجل لا يترك فلذا كان سنة احتياطا ولا يفيد ذلك سنيته للمرأة تأمل

[Fatawa Raheemiyah Vol: 6 Pg: 261 (Darul Ishaa’at)]

 

 

Imam Ahmad bin Hambal (Rahmatullahi ‘alayhi) said: For men it is more strictly required, but for women it is less strictly required.” [Al-Mughni by Ibn Qudamah (Rahmatullahi ‘alayhi)]

 

 

We conclude from aforesaid discussion that “female circumcision” will be regarded as Mustahab and Sunnah for the male.

 

 

And Allāh Ta῾āla Knows Best

Wassalāmu ῾alaykum

Ml. Mohammad Ashhad bin Said

Correspondence Iftā Student, Mauritius

 

Checked and Approved by:

Mufti Ebrahim Desai

Dārul Iftā, Madrasah In῾āmiyyah

 

3 Problems with answers:

 

  1. Hadeeth quoted are weak
  2. Half the answer from Fatawa-e-Rahimiyyah has been quoted (and conclusion ommited)
  3. Hanbali Madhab instead of Hanafi Madhab has been quoted

Kindly report the answer back to askimam for them to reconsider the respond.

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