Picture source unknown

Source: http://coveredpearls.wordpress.com/2011/10/07/woman-travelling-accompanied-by-a-group-of-other-women/

In order to preserve both the man and woman’s honor and to safeguard their hearts from temptation, and as a means of blocking the pathways that lead to corruption, a woman is restricted from traveling alone without a mahram. This is since if a woman is accompanied by a mahram, he will preserve her, safeguard her and take care of her needs. The Prophet  said: “It is not lawful for a woman that believes in Allaah and the Last Day to travel the distance of two days unless accompanied by a mahram.”[3]
In one narration it states: “a day and a night”[4] while in another narration it states: “to travel” without specifying a time-frame.[5]
What is intended here is that a woman should not travel alone without a mahram. If she does so, i.e. travels without a mahram, she would be disobeying Allaah and His Messenger, committing what Allaah has forbidden and exposing herself to fitnah. This applies generally to all situations and time periods.
As for what some people claim ­ that if a woman travels accompanied by a group of other women, this takes the place of a mahram ­ then this is a view that is in opposition to the Prophet’s statement: “It is not lawful for a woman that believes in Allaah and the Last Day to travel the distance of a day unless accompanied by a mahram.” [6]
A group of women do not serve as a mahram for a woman. The mahram of a woman is well-known ­ it is a male that she is forbidden to marry due to family-ties, such as her father, her son, her paternal uncle, and her maternal uncle…or due to some allowable reason, such as marital ties, like the father of her husband or the son of her husband, or such as foster-suckling ties based on the Prophet’s statement: “Foster-suckling makes forbidden that which is forbidden due to family-ties.” [7]
Therefore, a woman’s mahram is any male that she is forbidden (to marry) due to a family-tie or some allowable reason. This forbiddance (of marriage) must also be endless, i.e. everlasting. So what doesn’t fall into this category is the temporary (marital) forbiddance such as the wife’s sister and the wife’s paternal and maternal aunt. This marital forbiddance is only applicable for a prescribed time. This is why the husband cannot serve as a mahram for his wife’s sister even though he is forbidden from marrying her since this marital forbiddance is temporary. In the same manner, he cannot be a mahram to his wife’s maternal and paternal aunt. This is what a mahram is. As for a group of women, they are not a mahram.
The Prophet  stipulated that a woman be accompanied by a mahram when traveling under all circumstances, regardless of whether she travels by foot, on a riding beast, in a car or by airplane.
Some people today claim that there is no problem if a woman travels by airplane and her mahram dispatches her in the departure airport while another mahram picks her up at the arrival airport. We say: No, this is not permissible, since she has traveled without a mahram. And the Prophet  said: “It is not lawful for a woman that believes in Allaah and the Last Day to travel the distance of two days unless accompanied by a mahram.” This applies to whether she travels on foot, by car or on a riding beast. The Prophet  did not specify. However, the cause is there, and it is due to the fitnah that is feared will befall her ­ even if she is on an airplane. So she is not safe from fitnah even on board a plane.
Furthermore, let’s suppose for example that the airplane is forced to change its destination and so it lands in a different country ­ who will pick her up in this other country? That is why there must be a mahram present along with the woman.
This is such that once a man came to the Prophet  and said: “O Messenger of Allaah, I have enlisted for such and such battle expedition, but my wife has gone out for Hajj.” The Prophet  told him: “Go back and make Hajj with your wife.”[8]
The Prophet  turned this man away from battle so that he may accompany his wife on Hajj and serve as a mahram for her. This is proof that having a mahram is a condition for a woman to travel on Hajj or to other places, regardless of whether she is with a group of people or not. This is why the scholars of Fiqh, may Allaah have mercy on them, mentioned that one of the conditions in which Hajj becomes obligatory on a woman is when she has a mahram available to travel with her. So if one is not available for her, she is then not obligated to make Hajj until a mahram does become accessible for her.
Foot Notes:
[3] Reported by Imaam Al-Bukhaaree (2/219-220) from the narration of Abu Sa’eed Al-Khudree 
[4] Reported by Imaam Muslim (no. 1339) from the narration of Abu Hurairah 
[5] Reported by Al-Bukhaaree (4/18) and Muslim (no. 1341)
[6] Reported by Imaam Muslim (no. 1339) from the narration of Abu Hurairah 
[7] Reported by Imaam Al-Bukhaaree (3/149) from the narration of Ibn `Abbaas 
[8] Reported by Imaam Al-Bukhaaree (2/219) from the narration of Ibn `Abbaas
Source : Advice to the Muslim Woman – Shaykh Saalih bin Fawzaan al-Fawzaan [Book]

(My source: http://coveredpearls.wordpress.com/2011/09/15/a-woman-does-not-act-as-a-mahram-for-another-woman/)

Can a woman be considered a mahram for a woman she is not related to for purposes of traveling or sitting with others?
A woman cannot be a mahram for another.
The one who is considered mahram is a man that a woman cannot marry due to blood relations, such as her father and her brother, or a man related to her due to marriage, such as her husband, her father-in-law and her step-son, or a man related due to breast feeding, such as her father from breast feeding and so forth.
It is not allowed for a man to be in private with a woman he is not related to nor can he travel with her.
The Prophet (sal-Allaahu `alayhe wa sallam) said,
((A woman does not travel except with a mahram.))
This was recorded by al-Bukhaaree and Muslim.
The Prophet (sal-Allaahu `alayhe wa sallam) also said,
((A man is never alone with a woman except that Satan is the third.))
This was recorded by Imam Ahmad and others from the Hadeeth of ‘Umar with a saheeh chain.
Shaykh Ibn Baaz
Fataawa al-Mar.ah

Different types of Oppression upon the Muslim Women
Sheikh ‘Abdul ‘Azeez bin ‘Abdullaah aali Sheikh
Translated by Abu Fouzaan Qaasim
(my source: http://coveredpearls.wordpress.com/2012/04/11/different-types-of-oppression-upon-the-muslim-women/

In the name of Allaah, The Just, All-Wise. May peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family, companions and all those who follow them in goodness until the day of Return. As for what follows;

[The Grand Mufti of Saudi Arabia, Sheikh 'Abdul 'Azeez bin 'Abdullaah aali Sheikh, may Allaah preserve him, discussed in one of his sermons the different types of oppression that befall the Muslim Women, may Allaah protect them, and here is a brief translation of them. For the arabic text please go to http://mufti.af.org.sa/node/1768.]

“The different types of oppression upon the Muslim Women are:

1- That the one who proposes to her cons her. Displaying lofty mannerisms from uprightness, good dealings, firmness upon the religion, soft speech and humility; however incidents  thereafter clarify the lies of all that which were displayed. And this is from the types of oppression.

2- Mistreatment of her and dealing cruely with her which are major errors. Our Prophet, may peace and blessings be upon him, said: “The best of you are those who are best to their families and I am the best of you to my family.” From amongst the slaves of Allaah are those who consider cursing and humilating the women, due to the fact that he is her maintainer, (from masculinity). However this is in opposition to the legislation of Allaah. Justice, benevolence, and polite speech are all desired from the Muslim. Allaah the Most High says:

“And say to My slaves (i.e. the true believers of Islamic Monotheism) that they should (only) say those words that are the best. (Because) Satan verily, sows disagreements among them. Surely, Satan is to man a plain enemy.” [17:53]

3- Also hitting her mercilessly whether that be for a reason or not. Allaah has permitted hitting the women after boycotting and admonishing them. Hitting them lightly where it will not bruise as it is suppose to discipline them and not harm. For this reason the Prophet, may peace and blessings be upon him, forbade hitting the women. Then ‘Umar, may Allaah be pleased with him, said: “O’ Messenger of Allaah, the women become audacious towards their husbands. And so he permitted hitting them (lightly). Then some women came to the houses of the Prophet, may peace be upon him, complaining about their husbands so the Prophet, may peace be upon him, said addressing the men: “Indeed some women have visited the family of Muhammad complaining about their husbands and they are not the best of you.” [Abu Daawud]

And he, peace be upon him, said: “Let not a man beat his wife then be intimate with her at the end of the day.” And ‘Aaisha, may Allaah be pleased with her, said: “The Messenger of Allaah, may peace and blessings be upon him, never hit anyone with his hands, not a woman nor servant, except when he was in war in the path of Allaah.”

4- That the man calls her by the most offensive and repugnant of names. The Messenger, may peace be upon him, said: “Do not villify her nor hit her in the face.” Meaning do not say to her; “may Allaah uglify you.” Speech isn’t to be with obscenities. Rather it is to be polite and understandable so that the target at hand can be accomplished.

5- Likewise a lack of equity between spouses when one has multiple wives. Because when Allaah allowed polygyny, He stipulated that the man must execute that which is obligatory upon him and that there be justice in that and he is capable of being equal between them. Allaah, the Mighty and Majestic, says:

“And if you fear that you shall not be able to deal justly with the orphan-girls, then marry (other) women of your choice, two or three, or four but if you fear that you shall not be able to deal justly (with them), then only one or (the captives and the slaves) that your right hands possess. That is nearer to prevent you from doing injustice.” [4:3]

And in the prophetic tradition: “Whoever has two wives and favours one more than the other, he’ll come on the day of Resurrection with one of his sides slanting.”

6- Preventing and obstructing her from visiting her family from time to time and getting together with her parents and siblings.

7- Burdening her with more than she can bear for that is in opposition to the way of the Prophet, may peace be upon him. Muhammad, may peace and blessings be upon him, was the best of mankind and a pioneer for every Muslim. With that, when ‘Aaisha, may Allaah be pleased with her, was asked about his affair inside the home she said: “He was at the service of his family and when the call for prayer would be called he would leave for prayer.”

8- What some of those whose faith are weak and their shyness and fear of Allaah are very low do of dictating to her the adorning of herself outside the house, unveiling, mingling with men whom she is able to marry, etc.

9- What some of them do from preventing her from inheriting be it from her father, mother or even her children. All of this is sheer ignorance. Allaah has given the women her right from the inheritance. He stipulated for the wife a fourth or an eighth. If she is a mother then a sixth or a third. If she is a sister then half or what remains. This is the arrangement of the inheritance as set by Allaah. He says:

“These are the limits (set by) Allaah (or ordainments as regards laws of inheritance), and whosoever obeys Allaah and His Messenger will be admitted to Gardens under which rivers flow (in Paradise), to abide therein, and that will be the great success. And whosoever disobeys Allaah and His Messenger, and transgresses His limits, He will cast him into the Fire, to abide therein; and he shall have a disgraceful torment.” [4:13,14]

And He says at the ending of Chapter an-Nisaa’:

“They ask you for a legal verdict. Say: “Allaah directs (thus) about Al-Kalalah (those who leave neither descendants nor ascendants as heirs). If it is a man that dies, leaving a sister, but no child, she shall have half the inheritance. If (such a deceased was) a woman, who left no child, her brother takes her inheritance. If there are two sisters, they shall have two-thirds of the inheritance; if there are brothers and sisters, the male will have twice the share of the female. (Thus) does Allaah makes clear to you (His Law) lest you go astray. And Allaah is the All-Knower of everything.” [4:176]

So the right of the woman must be given to her whether she is a wife, mother, daughter or sister from that which Allaah has portioned for her.

10- What some of them do from restrciting her expenses. Allaah says:

“No mother shall be treated unfairly on account of her child, nor father on account of his child.” [2:233]

And He says:

“Lodge them (the divorced women) where you dwell, according to your means, and do not treat them in such a harmful way that they be obliged to leave.” [65:6]

11- What some of them do when one of them marries a woman, then afterwards he doesn’t want to be with her anymore not because of her religion or manners or the like but merely because he doesn’t want her anymore, he begins to harm her so that she will give back the dowry that he paid to her. Allaah has prohibited this where He said:

“O you who believe! You are forbidden to inherit women against their will, and you should not treat them with harshness, that you may take away part of the Mahr you have given them…” [4:19]

And He says:

“But if you intend to replace a wife by another and you have given one of them a Cantar (of gold i.e. a great amount) as Mahr, take not the least bit of it back; would you take it wrongfully without a right and (with) a manifest sin? And how could you take it (back) while you have gone in unto each other, and they have taken from you a firm and strong covenant?” [4:20-21]

12- Also spending her money that she has earned from working. Some of these individuals wrong the woman and take her money. It could be her husband or father. Where he stipulates in the contract that all of her earnings are his and that he is her guardian. All of this is oppression and transgression. The money that she has earned by working belongs to her that Allaah has secured for her. It is impermissible to take her money without her permission.

13- Or what some of them do by taking advantage of the womens weakness and decieving her by taking numerous loans out for long periods of time in her name placing her in grave debt.

In ending, it is obligatory upon all the men to truly and sincerly fear Allaah and cooperate upon goodness. May Allaah grant us success to that which He loves and is pleased with. May Allaah bless us by the Noble Qur’aan and benefit us by that which is contained in it from signs and wise rememberances.”

Is the Home a prison for the Muslim Women?
(Advice for those women who believe that the home is a prison (for them) – Shaykh ’Uthaymeen

Translated by Abu Fouzaan Qaasim

In the name of Allaah, the Most Kind, All-Knower. May peace and blessings be upon our prophet Muhammad, his family, companions and those who follow them in goodness until the day of Resurrection. As for what follows;

Question: Is there any advice for those women who believe that the home is a prison (for them)?

Sheikh Muhammad ibn Saalih al-’Uthaymeen, may Allaah have mercy upon him, says:

“Yes, that which I say to those women is that the One who has made the house a “prison” if it is even proper to say that is Allaah, the Mighty and Majestic. The Most High says:

“And remain in your homes.” [33:33]

Also the authentic narration of the Prophet, may peace and blessings be upon him, stated about the women: “and their homes are better for them”. The woman is free in her home, she goes to every place therein and takes care of the needs of the house and works for herself so where is the imprisonment or confinement? Yes it is a prison for the one who wishes to be like a man. From what is well-known is that Allaah, the Most High, has placed certain characteristics for the men as well as for the women and He has designated between them with regards to their physical make-up, characteristics and intellects. And we say to the woman who says that the woman remaining in her home is like a prison that she is in opposition to the statement of Allaah, the Most High, where He says:

“And remain in your homes.” [33:33]

How can we consider what Allaah has commanded with to a prison? It is like I said a prison for the one who wishes to mix and mingle with the men and activeness. For indeed remaining in the home includes happiness, modesty, bashfulness and distance from fitnah (trials). Likewise in it is distancing the women from looking at the men because when she goes out and sees these men, this handsome young man with nice clothing and the likes she will be put to trial likewise the men with her.

So the women must fear Allaah and return to what their Lord and Creator and to what the Messenger of the Lord of all the Worlds, may peace and blessings be upon him, has mentioned to them and they must know with certainty that they are going to meet Allaah, the Mighty and Majestic, and He will question them: “How did you respond to the Messengers?” They do not know when they will meet Allaah. She might wake up in her home or palace and in the evening in her grave or vice-versa. Therefore these women must fear Allaah and leave alone these evil western ideologies. For when these westerns consumed these foul meats they left the bones and scraps for us after all the meat has been eaten. Now they wish that their women can return to being a true woman, like the Muslimah, remaining in her home with modesty and faraway from places of evil and trials however that will not happen for them. Is it befitting for us Muslims, we have our own religion, our own mannerisms and characteristics to chase after them in their wrecthedness?! Glory be to Allaah, the Great. There is no might nor power except with Allaah.