Sheikh `Atiyyah Saqr, former head of Al-Azhar Fatwa Committee, states: In an authentic Hadith, the Mother of the Believers, `A’ishah (may Allah be pleased with her) narrated that the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) came to her and found her crying. He said, “Have you got your period?” She said, “Yes”. The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said, “Allah the Almighty has prescribed this for the daughters of Adam, so do what other pilgrims do except tawaf (circumambulation of the Ka`bah) until you take ghusl (purificatory bath).” (Al-Bukhari and Muslim)
Therefore, a menstruating woman is allowed to stand on Mount `Arafah, to run between the two hills of As-Safah and Al-Marwah, and to throw the pebbles. Also, she can make takbir and tasbih and dhikr (remembering Allah).
However, she is forbidden from the following:
– Offering Prayer (Salah)
– Staying at the Mosque
– Touching or carrying the Qur’an.
Jabir (may Allah be pleased with him) reported that `A’ishah’s menstruation started while she was performing Hajj, but she performed all the rites of Hajj except tawaf around the Ka`bah. When her period ended and she became clean, she performed the tawaf and said, “O Prophet of Allah! Everyone has performed Hajj and `Umrah together, but I have performed Hajj only.” Thereupon, the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) commanded her brother `Abdur-Rahman to accompany her to a place called Tan`im (in order to perform `Umrah). So, she performed `Umrah right after Hajj in the month of Dhul-Hijah.
Moreover, Sheikh Ahmad Kutty, a senior lecturer and an Islamic scholar at the Islamic Institute of Toronto, Ontario, Canada, adds: Women who are menstruating should assume ihram after a bath and recite talbiyah and engage in dhikr and du`aa’. However, they must not offer Prayer. They can practice all of the rituals of Hajj with the sole exception of tawaf.
As far as performing tawaf is concerned, they should postpone it until such time that they are free of menses and have purified themselves through ghusl (bathing).
If, however, because of special circumstances beyond their control, they find themselves unable to stay in Makkah (for instance, they have no choice but to leave with the group because of inability to change or reschedule travel plans), then they are allowed to perform tawaf while still menstruating after cleaning themselves and wearing pads, etc.
The above ruling is given by Imam Ibn Taymiyyah. It has been based on a valid principle of Islamic jurisprudence which states that any condition – upon which the validity of a certain act of worship is dependent – can be waived if a person cannot fulfil the same; and the act of worship thus performed will be considered as valid without it. An example for this is covering oneself during Prayer. Thus, if a person finds himself unable to cover his `awrah (what must be covered) because he could not find anything to wear, then he must still pray without covering himself and his Prayer will still be considered as valid, although in ordinary circumstances such a Prayer will be considered as null and void. The same rule applies to a menstruating woman who must leave Makkah because of special circumstances beyond her control. The normal condition of purification from menses for the validity of tawaf is be waived in her case, and her Hajj will be considered as perfectly valid.