Impermissible & Permissible Acts of Worship

“But perhaps you hate a thing and it is good for you; and perhaps you love a thing and it is bad for you. And Allah Knows, while you know not.” [al-Baqara:216]

Impermissible (Haram) Acts

According to the Hanafi madhhab, while a woman is in a state of menstruation (hayd) or post-natal bleeding (nifas) it is impermissible (haram) to:

  • Pray the ritual prayer (fard, witr, nadhr, sunna, and nafl)
  • Prostrate (tilawa, shukr, tawba)
  • Fast (fard, nadhr, sunna, and nafl)
  • Touch the Qur’an or a Qur’anic verse without a non-attached barrier
  • Recite the Qur’an
  • Enter any mosque
  • Make tawaf (ziyara, umrah, sadr, qudum, nadhr, sunna, and nafl)
  • Engage in sexual intercourse
  • Be touched between the navel to the knee without a barrier covering one’s skin

These are the general categories of prohibited acts. For more details, please consult a local scholar inshaAllah.

Permissible (Halal) Acts

Even though this list may seem limiting, there are numerous acts of worship that remain permissible alhamduliLlah.

In the Hanafi madhhab, it is an overall recommendation that a menstruating woman make ablution (wudu) for each prayer time, sit in her usual place of worship, and make dhikr for the time it takes for her to normally pray so that she does not lose her habit of worship while in this state.

A menstruating woman can also:

  • Supplicate for whatever she wishes
  • Make dhikr of Allah Most High
  • Repent (make tawba) to Allah Most High
  • Beg for forgiveness (istighfar) and the pardon of her sins (‘afu)
  • Demonstrate good character towards one’s spouse, parents, children, and fellow Muslims
  • Listen to the Qur’an
  • Make salawaat on the Prophet ﷺ
  • Memorize Prophetic duas
  • Study/review sacred knowledge
  • Give in charity
  • Perform acts of service to others
  • Read the seera and other stories about the sahaba/salihin
  • Practice gratitude for her blessings
  • Practice patience and contentment with her trials
  • Reflect about Allah’s great signs
  • Read hadith, like Riyad al-Salihin or Imam Nawawi’s 40 hadith collection
  • Listen to religious lectures

In addition to the aforementioned, in Makkah, a menstruating woman can:

  • Visit Ghar al-Hira
  • Visit Ghar Thawr
  • Visit the Prophet’s birthplace ﷺ
  • Visit the Mu’alla Graveyard
  • Visit museums that outline Islamic history/artifacts

In addition to the aforementioned, in Madina, a menstruating woman can:

  • Visit the Prophet ﷺ from outside the mosque (listen to Lesson 7)
  • Visit the historical battle sites, like Badr, Uhud, and Khandaq
  • Visit museums that outline Islamic history/artifacts
  • Make dua for those in the Baqi’ cemetery

Read our advice for menstruating women inshaAllah.