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A Donkey and a Dog

This is exactly what A’isha said to the great Caliphs and companions when she remarked:

"You have put us on the same level with a donkey and a dog."

The question is why did A’isha make this statement to those great companions and scholars of the time of Muhammad. A’isha said that to Ali Ibn Abi Talib, Abdalla Ibn Abbas, Abu-zarr, Abu Hurayra, Anas Ibn Malik and others on whose authority most of Muhammad’s Hadith and interpretations of the Qur’an were handed down. Why did you say that A’isha?

She said it because those pillars of Islam assured people that Muhammad said that if a man is praying and a donkey, a dog, or a woman passes in front of him, his prayer will not be acceptable, and he has to perform ablution (washing) again and repeat his prayer. None of the scholars question this matter which is repeated daily—whenever a woman passes in front of a man while he is praying or if a dog or a donkey walks in front of him. In this case, he has to wash himself again and repeat his prayer; otherwise his prayer will not be counted.

Ibn Hazm Confirms and Quotes

In his book, "al-Muhalla", "The Sweetened" (part 4, p. 8), Ibn Hazm says:

"A prayer is rescinded by a dog, whether it is passing by or not, and by a woman and a donkey!"

At the beginning of page 9, Ibn Hazm emphasizes that all the great companions of the prophet without exception attested to that. Then he records for us (page 11) that A’isha told them: "You have put us on the same level with a donkey and a dog." Why is it that if a man passes in front of a praying man his prayer is not repealed, while if a woman walks in front of him, the prayer must be repeated? Why is the presence of a woman regarded as similar to the presence of a donkey or a dog? The above-mentioned discussion does not need more comment.

Taken from http://answering-islam.org/BehindVeil/btv3.html#CH3 (Note: We do not necessarily endorse this site or its views.)