Is the husband responsible if the wife does not pray or wear hijab?


Salaam Alaikum Sheikh Gibril,

I hope you are in the best of health and Iman.

Someone asked me a question regarding their wife. Asked me if he is responsible if his wife doesn’t pray or do hijab. Will he be punished for his wife not praying? He says that she will go in her own grave and be accountable for her missed prayers and not covering. Therefore he’s told her and feels no responsibility.

I didn’t know what the view of scholars or sheikhs is on this, would you be able to give me a brief insight on this?



Alaykum Salam,

A Muslim who doesn’t pray but knows that it is wrong is a fasiq who needs to be told and pressured to mend their ways until they do (not just once and that’s it), and that is the responsibility of a parent or a spouse or a sibling or an imam or whoever can advise or exert authority; while someone who considers there is nothing wrong with it is a kafir who cannot remain married with a Muslim regardless of gender.

Imam al-Baydawi said in his Tafsir under the verse of Surat al-Baqara: and He does not mislead with it except the fasiqin:

Wa-mā yuḍillu bihi illā-l-fāsiqīn, But He misleads none thereby other than the depraved,” meaning those who pass the bounds of faith, as in the saying of Allah Most High,Verily the hypocrites—they are the depraved (al-Tawba 9:67), from their idiom fasaqat al-ruṭaba ʿan qishrihā, “The ripe moist date breaks away from its husk” when it comes out.

Fisq originally means leaving the straight path. Ruʾba said:

[Camels] deviating (fawāsiq) from their straight path, errant.

[The three types of fāsiq]
The fāsiq in the law is whoever violates the divine command by committing a grave sin. There are three levels of fāsiq:

• The first level is mindlessness, which is for him to commit them at times, while considering them repugnant.
• The second level is immersion, which is for him to com­mit them habitually without second thought.
• The third level is disavowal, which is for him to commit them while considering them legitimate.

Once he surveys the latter posi­tion and maps out its grounds, he has cast off the noose of belief from his neck and donned the garment of unbelief. However, as long as he remains at the level of mindlessness or that of immersion, he retains the appellation of believer because he is still dressed with confirma­tion—which is the referent of belief—and because Allah Most High said, “And if two factions of the believers fall to fighting” (al-Ḥujurāt 49:9).

And Allah knows best.


Hajj Gibril Haddad

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