The Official Website of the Office of His Eminence Al-Sayyid Ali Al-Husseini Al-Sistani

Question & Answer » Mosque

1 Question: A mosque has a number of floors, including the prayer room, basement, kitchen, storage, bathroom facilities, are all these parts of the building considered as a mosque, and have the rulings of the mosque? Can women who are in their state of ritual impurity to the other floors of the mosque?
Answer: If the particular land was considered as Waqf (endowment) before the commencement of the building as a mosque, then all of the building, including the basements, and the levels above, have the rulings of a mosque.
However, if the land was not considered as Waqf (endowment) and after completion of the building, one of the levels was considered as a mosque, then only that level will be considered as a mosque, and the rulings of the mosque will comply.
Thus, those who are in the state of ritual impurity, may make use of the other levels of the building, and not enter the level considered as the mosque.
2 Question: Is it permissible for the people of Ahlul Kitãb and other non-Muslims to enter the mosques (masjid) and other Islamic places of worship [like husayniyya or imambargah which are not masjid]? And is it necessarily for us to enforce the hijãb on those [non-Muslim women] who do not observe hijãb and allow them to enter [the mosque or places of worship], if it is permissible?
Answer: Based on obligatory precaution, it is not permissible for them [i.e., non-Muslims] to enter the mosque (masjid). As for their entering the places of worship, etc, there is no problem in it. If their entry [in imambargah or a husayniyya or a center] without hijãb is considered as a sign of disrespect, hijãb should be enforced on the [non-Muslim] women.
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