Awn al-Ma`bood [2/300-301], the commentary to Abu Daawood by Abu
at-Tayyib al-Adheemabaadee, may Allaah have mercy upon him
577) Umm Waraqah, the daughter of Nawfal reported,
"When the Prophet (sallallaahu `alaihi wasallam) proceeded for Badr I said to him, 'Messenger of
Allaah allow me to accompany you in the battle. I shall act as a nurse for your
patients and maybe Allaah will bestow martyrdom upon me.' He replied, 'stay at
your home and Allaah the Exalted will bestow martyrdom upon you.' [The narrator
said: hence she was called a martyr.] She read the Qur'aan and sought permission
from the Prophet (sallallaahu `alaihi wasallam) to have a mu'adhdhin in her house. He therefore permitted
her to do so. She announced that her slave and slave girl would be free after
her death so one night they strangled her with a sheet of cloth until she died
and ran away. The next day Umar announced that anyone who has knowledge of them
or has seen them should bring them to him. (After they were caught) Umar ordered
that they be crucified and this was the first crucifixion at
578) From Umm Waraqah, the daughter of Abdullaah bin
al-Haarith, "the Messenger of Allaah (sallallaahu `alaihi wasallam) used to visit her at her
house. He appointed a mu'adhdhin to call adhaan for her and he commanded her to
lead the inmates of her house in prayer." Abdurrahmaan said, "I
saw that her mu'adhdhin was an old man."
[Abu Daawood (Eng. Trans. #591&592)]
This hadeeth establishes that the imaamate of women and their
praying in congregation is correct and affirmed by means of the order of the
Messenger of Allaah (sallallaahu `alaihi wasallam) . Aa`ishah (RA) and Umm Salamah (RA) led the women in
prayer for the obligatory prayers and the prayer of Taraaweeh.
Al-Haafidh said in ‘Talkhees al-Habeer’,
"The hadeeth of Aa`ishah that the led the women in prayer
by standing in the middle (of their first row) was reported by Abdurrazaaq and
via his route, ad-Daaruqutnee and al-Bayhaqee from the hadeeth of Abu Haazim
from Raa'ita al-Hanafiyyah from Aa'ishah that 'she led them in an obligatory
prayer standing amongst them.'
Ibn Abee Shaybah and al-Haakim report via the route of ibn Abee
Laylah from Ataa from Aa`ishah 'that she used lead the women in prayer and
stand in the middle of their (first row).'
The hadeeth of Umm Salamah that she led the women in prayer and
stood in the middle of them was reported by ash-Shaafi`ee, ibn Abee Shaybah and
Abdurrazzaaq all from ibn Uyaynah from Ammaar ad-Dahnee from a woman of his
people who was called Hajeerah from Umm Salamah 'that she led them in prayer
and stood in the middle (of the first row).'
The wording of Abdurrazzaaq has, 'Umm Salamah led us in the
Asr prayer and stood in the middle of us.'"
Al-Haafidh also said in ‘ad-Diraayah’,
"Muhammad bin al-Hasan reports from Ibraaheem an-Nakha`ee
from Aa`ishah 'that she used to lead the women in prayer during the month of
Ramadaan and stood in the middle (of their first row).'"
I say: it is clear from these ahaadeeth that when a woman leads
other women then she stands in the middle (of their first row) amongst them and
not in front of them (as a man does).
(as-Sana`aanee) said in ‘as-Subul as-Salaam’,
"The hadeeth lends proof for the correctness of a woman
leading the people of her household, even if their be a man amongst them - and
in this case he was her mu`adhdhin and an old man. The literal sense of the
hadeeth shows that she used to lead him, her servant and her slave-girl.
Abu Thawr, al-Muzanee and at-Tabaree took to the opinion that
this was correct while the majority were of the opposite opinion."
…Abdurrazzaaq reports in his Musannaf from Ikrimah from
ibn Abbaas that he said, "when a woman leads women in prayer then she
should stand in the middle of them."