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['Aalim Network QR] Female Mujtahida

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|       In the Name of Allah, the Compassionate, the All-Merciful       |\
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Salaamun alaykum,

	The answer to the following question was kindly provided by
Moulana Sayyid Muhammad Rizvi. 


Mustafa Rawji
Moderator, 'Aalim Network


Assalamu alaikum,

I know that we must follow a mujtahid.  I also know that a woman cannot be
followed as a Marja'.  However, for a woman who has reached the level of
education of a mujtahid, is it necessary for her to follow someone else?
In a recent discussion, someone said that we must follow a mujtahid, and
the mujtahid must be male, therefore a woman mujtahid would still have to
follow someone else.  This woman, by virtue of the fact that she is a
mujtahid, should not need to follow anyone else, just as a male mujtahid
would not. The level of knowledge of a mujtahid implies that the person is
capable of independent reasoning on Islamic subjects.  Can you please
clarify this?


It is haram for a person who has reached the level of ijtihad to do taqlid
for another mujtahid. This applies equally to men as well as women.
However, when the question of a marja` comes (i.e., a mujtahid who is
followed by others), then one of the conditions is that the marja` must be
a male. For example, the late Ayatullah al-Khu`i, says:  "The conditions
[necessary] in marja`i 't-taqlid...", before listing the well-known
conditions ---like sanity, being baligh, iman, justice and being a male
(Minhaju 's-Salihiyn, vol. 1, p. 7). 

In short, a woman can reach the level of ijtihad and follow her own views
but she cannot become a marja`. 

Sayyid M. Rizvi

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