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Al Ghazzali is revered in history as "The Man Who Saved Islam". For many Islamic scholars, his authority in religious matters is only second to Muhammad. He wrote the following rules about women:

  • She should stay at home and get on with her spinning
  • She can go out only in emergencies.
  • She must not be well-informed nor must she be communicative with her neighbors and only visit them when absolutely necessary.
  • She should take care of her husband and respect him in his presence and his absence and seek to satisfy him in everything.
  • She must not leave her house without his permission and if given his permission she must leave secretly.
  • She should put on old clothes and take deserted streets and alleys, avoid markets, and make sure that a stranger does not hear her voice, her footsteps, smell her or recognize her.
  • She must not speak to a friend of her husband even in need.
  • Her sole worry should be her “al bud” (reproductive organs) her home as well as her prayers and her fast.
  • If a friend of her husband calls when her husband is absent she must not open the door nor reply to him in order to safeguard her “al bud”.
  • She should accept what her husband gives her as sufficient sexual needs at any moment.
  • She should be clean and ready to satisfy her husband’s sexual needs at any moment.[1]

He also wrote, “It is a fact that all the trials, misfortunes and woes which befall men come from women."

He mentioned the following sufferings for women due to the fruit that Eve ate, “When Eve ate the fruit which Allah had forbidden to her from the tree in Paradise, the Lord, be He praised, cursed women with eighteen punishments:

  • Menstruation
  • Childbirth
  • Separation from mother and father and marriage to a stranger
  • Pregnancy
  • not having control over her own person
  • a lesser share in inheritance
  • her liability to be divorced and inability to divorce
  • its being lawful for men to have four wives, but for a woman to have only one husband
  • the fact that she must stay secluded in the house
  • the fact that she must keep her head covered inside the house
  • the fact that two women’s testimony has to be set against the testimony of one man
  • the fact that she must not go out of the house unless accompanied by a near relative
  • the fact that men take part in Friday and feast day prayers and funerals while women do not
  • disqualification for leadership and judgeship
  • the fact that merit has one thousand components, only one of which is attributable to women while 999 are attributable to men
  • the fact that if women are profligate, they will be given twice as much torment as the rest of the community at the Resurrection Day
  • the fact that if their husbands die they must observe a waiting period of four months and ten days before remarrying[2]


Marriage is a form of slavery. The woman is man’s slave and her duty therefore is absolute obedience to the husband in all that he asks of her person. A woman, who at the moment of death enjoys the full approval of her husband, will find her place in Paradise.


  1. The Revival of the Religious Sciences Al Ghazzali
  2. Counsel for Kings. Al Ghazzali.