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The Family As Guardian Of Desires

Posted by islamicwedding on October 8, 2008

The Family As Guardian Of Desires

We now come to the second pillar, that of family life as guardian of the natural erotic desires of man. It is on purpose that I would give Eros preference over Sex since this word has been misused so badly that it tends to distort rather than to describe what I want to say. The Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) has said:

“Marriage is a part of my sunnah, whoever runs away from my path is not from amongst us”. In the Qur’an, Sura II, Verse 187 men are told “They (your wives) are your garments and you are their garments…. So now associate with them”. Islam being the complete way of life that always takes into consideration the natural disposition of man, enjoins marriage. And it tells us in a few beautiful words how husband and wife should, like garments, cover and protect each other, how they may find fulfilment in each other in their erotic urges, in their desire for children and in mutual exchange of love and tenderness. I would like to add a few personal words here since as a convert to Islam I am sometimes asked how I feel about the approach of Islam towards matrimony.

Arranged Marriages

What I appreciated by watching how well it is usually working out, is firstly the custom in Muslim families of so-called arranged marriages. During my stay in a Muslim country, as well as from the numerous former students and other Muslim friends whom I have known over 15 years, I could always observe that family life in arranged marriages is far more lasting and stable than in the average Western family. It seems that where parents or relatives with much insight and experience propose marriages, they do it on a broad basis considering family background, education, ambitions, likes and dislikes and so many other things. And though nearly all Muslim marriages are conducted by buying the cat in the bag (as we say in Germany) which means it is not discovered beforehand whether the partners fit together sexually, as is customary in the West, they can be called far more successful than marriages here.

Polygamy

Secondly it is the ticklish matter of polygamy. Before the Registrar married me to my European Muslim husband, he warned me of the four wives which would be admissible to him if we would ever live in Muslim country. Though a bit awe-struck at first, I soon learned that just because having more than one wife is allowed in Islam, it is practised very seldom. And since this official concession to the polygamous disposition undoubtedly inherent in some men, or to extraordinary circumstances like constant illness or barrenness of the first wife on the other hand, completely prohibits sexual relations outside marriage, I hold it to be a very wise decision. If a Muslim man for this or that reason simply cannot help desiring more than one wife, he is not forced by this urge to resort to any sinful act but may quite lawfully enjoy its fulfilment along with shouldering the consequent responsibilities. That, in my eyes, is the main point: hardly any man will merely for the sake of his greediness support more than one wife and the children out of this liaison, justly dividing his attention between his wives and offspring. He will think more than twice before he acts, while in societies without such sensible rules it is so terribly easy to jump into bed and walk away afterwards. Instead of the essential human dignity for the other woman, nothing but misery and degradation is in store for her and perhaps even her child. There are so many sad examples before us that no further comments are required on this subject.

Divorce

Thirdly, in matters of divorce I hold the Islamic solution to be much superior to any others I know. If for any reason, seldom though this does happen in practice, husband and wife consider it impossible to live together any longer, there is no loathsome chain keeping them together by force. They may separate in peace and each of them may seek fulfilment with somebody else. If a wife cannot stand her husband taking another wife, she can always ask for a divorce and is not forced to tolerate what seems intolerable to her. Is it not more in tune with human dignity if in these matters no mystery-mongering is required? The husband does not have to tell fantastic lies whenever he wants to meet his girlfriend, the wife needn’t pretend not to notice what is going on behind her back? Or if a husband thinks he cannot put up any longer with some bad habits or other things in his wife, there is no need for him to torture her by illtreatment–he simply separates from her. And the same applies to the wife. In this way, human society will be much more clean and healthy, homes will not be miserable for children and none of the spouses is condemned to lifelong unhappiness. There are a number of laws and regulations concerning divorce which I consider as most sensible, be it in respect to the financial position of a divorced woman and her children or in other respects, but it would lead us too far off to discuss them here. As Abu Dawud relates, the Prophet has said: “Of all things permitted by law, divorce is the most hateful in the sight of Allah”. And I think, this very strong tradition is also responsible for the fact that divorce, necessary though it may be in certain cases, is practised so extremely seldom in Muslim families.

Woman’s Status

And fourthly, I want to say a few words about the status of women in Islam. In the Qur’an we read:

Women have the same (rights in relation to their husbands) as are expected in all decency from them; while men stand a step above them” (2:228)

Those who want to find fault with Islamic regulations, consider this detrimental to the dignity of women. But I am of the opinion that this one sentence includes all that is necessary for my happiness as a woman. It grants me all rights for which I aspire–the right for education, for my own property, for being the guardian inside the house and even for a job if circumstances demand it, to name only a few aspects. But, most important of all, it grants me the right to depend on my husband, be it in matters of my livelihood or in regard to any important decisions that have to be taken for the benefit of the family. On the husband, however, rests the great responsibility of caring for his family and finding by consulting his wife and making use of all his wisdom, the best possible solutions. Does it not lie in the considerate husband who is capable of taking these decisions? This, I think, is the ideal family life as envisaged by Islam. In such an atmosphere, both partners will find fulfilment in erotic matters as well as in all other matrimonial fields of which rearing children has pre-eminence.

 

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Islamic Wedding

Posted by islamicwedding on October 7, 2008

Weddings in Islam

8 General Tips for a Muslim Wedding

By Samana Siddiqui, SoundVision Foundation, Bridgeview, Illinois

There are plenty of things to consider in wedding planning and arrangement. These are a few things which are either unknown or forgotten:

1. Invite the poor

According to one Hadith, the worst meal is the feast of a Walima in which rich people are invited and poor people are left out.

Don’t let your Walima be a class-based affair. Make sure that all guests are welcome, regardless of their economic situation.

2. Invite a multiethnic audience

Make your wedding party more representative of the Ummah (the worldwide Muslim community) by inviting Muslims of different ethnic backgrounds, whether it’s the local Imam and his family who are Turkish, the African-American Muslima who accepted Islam recently or the Lebanese family in your neighborhood.

3. Practice gender privacy at your wedding

This means providing women-only space where sisters who observe different levels and types of Hijab feel comfortable.

Most sisters like to dress up for a wedding, but they want to enjoy themselves without being watched by strange men. Also remember that your other guests have nothing to lose with this kind of set up so in the end, providing for women-only space works out for the best for everyone.

There are different ways to accommodate women-only space in a hall.

  • You can have separate rooms for men and women. This is the ideal solution for maximum privacy.
  • You can have a room in which there is a curtain or a row of tall plants.
  • In larger halls, you can make two distinct areas.

If your family tradition is not to have weddings arranged in this way, consider this: you will Insha Allah (if Allah wills) receive Allah’s blessings if you do so for seeking to accommodate your guests and trying to observe an Islamic practice which has been in place for about 1400 years.

In programs where women-only space is provided, children need to be divided up between parents. Older boys should stay with their dads. Older girls stay with mom. Young girls who are toilet trained can also go with dad.

It should also be remembered that professional photographers can violate the privacy of individuals by taking photos or videos without their consent. If you are taking photos or videos make sure not to include non-relatives or those who do not want their picture taken.

4. Set up a hospitality line

This is a line of hosts who will welcome guests when they arrive at the wedding.

Those who will be included in the hospitality line need to be told in advance that they will be part of it. They should not be told once they reach the hall for the wedding.

5. Have the hosts make rounds during dinner

When guests are digging into dinner, hosts should go around, making sure everyone has what they need and inviting those who are finished to take more.

6. Set the stage

It should be decided by the hall committee who will sit on stage at the wedding and exactly where. This has to be done carefully. The feelings of relatives and close family friends are important to consider when making decisions about this.

7. Make sure to set up a gift table

Where are you going to put all those goodies? Set up a specific gift table near the stage with a sign saying “Please put gifts here. Thank you.”

8. Mind the bathrooms

Take into account how many guests are coming and see if the washrooms at the hall are big enough. If it’s a large gathering, request hall administrators to have a cleaning person come in every half hour or so to clean up quickly in between.

Also, if one of the prayers occurs during the wedding, that means the washrooms will be used for Wudu (ablution before prayer). Ask the hall administrators to accommodate this by providing extra paper towels.

9. Avoid making unnecessary announcements

Avoid making unnecessary announcements of any sort during the program and keep the microphone close by so children do not mess around with it.

South African Couples Draw Up Own Marriage Contracts

By Zakiyya Ismail
This article appeared originally in the January 1997 issue of Al-Qalam magazine in South Africa

Negotiating Issues in the Marriage Contract

In South Africa, some Muslim couples are no longer just signing the nikkah register to solemnise their marriage in Islam. They choose instead to negotiate and sign their very own marriage or nikkah contract.

The couples at three recent weddings attended by this reporter each did it differently. While one of the couples decided to enter into a civil contract, the other two couples took a personal interest in their marriage contract as opposed to leaving it to a theological group. They had negotiated on issues regarding matrimonial property regime, the divorce process, custody, polygamy, sexual relationship and even relations with in-laws. This they did taking the Shari’ah and their personal circumstances and needs into consideration.

Although uncertain about its legal status, they felt that they at least will have some common understanding of their rights and obligations. al-Qalam has since learnt that the Muslim marriage contract is now recognised by the law.

According to Maulana Mohammed Saeed of the Jamiatul Ulema Transvaal, signing the traditional marriage register confirms the solemnising of the marriage contract. It is not a specific contract negotiated between the partners. Such a contract that regulates their marriage is separate.

Marriage Contract is New Concept for South African Muslims

While the concept of a marriage contract for most South African Muslims is foreign, having a marriage contract spelling out the terms of marriage was not an unusual concept during the early Muslim era as evidenced by Sukayna bint Husayn, the great granddaughter of the Prophet (s) and A’isha bint Talha, the niece of A’isha (r.a.).

Presently, many Muslim countries, including Iran, Malaysia, Indonesia, Tunisia and even where Muslim are in the minority like India have some kind of marriage contract that couples enter into. In some of these countries marriage laws are continually reformed. According to a report by Times of India, “The All India Muslim Personal Law Board will soon release a marriage contract which will revolutionise the status of married Muslim women.” Reforms around mehr, triple talaq and polygamy had been included.

In South Africa, however, Muslim marriages were not recognised by the law, so issues of dissolution, custody and maintenance were taken to an informal judiciary, usually a theological body, to be resolved. The result was a sometimes messy process, which left couples uncertain and insecure.

The Experiences of Three Couples

Al-Qalam spoke to two couples who had recently chosen to negotiate and sign a marriage contract.

Mohammed felt that the present process was inadequate, and that there was a need to spell out certain provisions in the contract to protect his and his wives rights. His wife Farhana became aware that terms and conditions could be stipulated in a marriage contract from her readings of Islamic history. For her it was important to set the boundaries of their relationship, and state from the very outset what their positions there were on various issues, and what the partners understood their responsibilities to be.

Ruwaida also negotiated a marriage contract. She first heard about the existence of such a thing in Jordan, she felt it was needed to avoid problems in the future, and it was also important so that other people could become aware that there were other ways of securing their rights within a marriage.

While her husband was uncertain about the necessity for such a contract, believing that the Shari’ah takes care of the marriage contract, he nevertheless agreed to enter into a personalised contract.

Farhana and Ruwaida felt strongly that signing a marriage contract was important for women who have had to face the brunt of unfair rulings on the part of some ‘ulama.

Another Muslim couple that al-Qalam spoke to decided not to negotiate their own marriage contract, and opted for the South African civil marriage instead. For them it was unnecessary to re-negotiate what was already in law, although they admitted there was a gender bias in custody rulings. Their understanding of marriage contracts was that it was a tool used in early stages of Islamic history, when there was no legislation in place to deal with marital disputes.

This new innovation, while lauded by some, has been criticised by others. One Maulana felt that while it might be a good idea to draw up the marriage contract in this way, the contract was inadequate in that it was not possible for it to deal with issues important in a marriage like justice with rahmah, fikr, and love. Mohammed faced criticism at his wedding when one guest greeted him after the nikah and told him that the contract was “a whole lot of hog-wash.”

Planning Your Wedding:
The 10 Biggest Pre-Wedding Mistakes

Reprinted from MSN.com, published by The Knot Inc. Edited slightly by Zawaj.com to be appropriate for an Islamic wedding.
Even the smartest, most on-top-of-things couple can make mistakes during wedding planning. Here are the 10 things you should keep an eye on before saying I do.

1. Blowing off your budget

It costs a lot of money to put on a wedding. Many excited brides start booking vendors and making purchases without having a real budget, and then they’re shocked to discover they’ve spent all of their money (or their parents’ money) and still don’t have half the things they need. If you bounce checks, don’t have the money to pay your deposits, or make your final payments past your vendors’ deadlines, your wedding will not happen as you have planned. The flowers won’t be delivered, your cake will not be decorated, and the band will not play all night — unless you pay up. Planning a wedding is serious business. Make a budget and keep track of your expenditures.

2. Ordering the wedding gown and/or bridesmaid dresses late

If going for a traditional bridal gown, brides need to place their orders six to eight months before their weddings. Most gowns are made to order; if you wait too long before your wedding date to make your selection, the gown simply may not be ready in time. Bridesmaid dresses should also be decided upon during the same time period, but only after the gown has been selected. You want to make sure your ladies have enough time to get measured and find accessories.

3. Procrastinating on that prenuptial…

It is a reality these days that people — even brides — have assets they want to protect. (This is particularly prevalent now that there are so many second marriages where a bride or groom may have children to whom they want their assets to go in case of death.) Leaving the discussion of a prenuptial agreement until the week before the wedding is a sure-fire way to increase the stress level by ten thousand percent — and endanger the impending marriage. So deal with this potentially sticky issue months in advance (Zawaj.com Editor: this applies equally to any provision that the groom or bride may want to include in the marriage contract).

4. Messing up the marriage license

There are so many rules around marriage licenses that brides are bound to make mistakes. Be sure to investigate time restrictions well in advance of your wedding date. Get your license 31 days before in some states — and you won’t be able to legally marry on your wedding day because it may be valid for only 30 days. Go for your license the day before your wedding and you may not get it in time, because some states have a 48-hour waiting period. Another common mess-up if you’re remarrying is not having official divorce papers in time to get the certificate.

5. Booking guest hotel rooms too late

Brides often leave blocking out hotel rooms for out-of-town guests until the last minute. If you’re marrying in a city (particularly one where conventions take place) or in a resort town and you don’t investigate hotel availability in advance, you can literally end up with not a single room for any of your guests to stay in. Your wedding might go on — but no one will be able to attend. Reserve a room block as early as possible, up to a year in advance.

6. Inviting too many guests

Make sure your guest list and your reception site match numbers-wise. You can’t invite 400 people assuming only 250 will RSVP with a yes — because if 300 happen to say yes, you may have to turn 50 away at the door. Sites can’t just add 10 more tables, as fire laws limit the maximum number of people in any room at one time. To avoid this, assume eighty percent will respond yes and limit your guest list accordingly.

7. Last-minute beauty blunders

Many brides think that scheduling chemical peels the week before their weddings will leave their skin looking angelic on their big days. Others think having their teeth bleached within days of their weddings will leave those pearly whites sparkling. Thinking of tanning the day before your wedding? Think again: You may end up with blisters instead of sun-kissed skin. Last-minute beauty treatments can lead to breakouts, mistakes, or — even worse — serious infections. Start a long-term beauty regimen months before the big day and focus on natural and common-sense measures such as eating a healthy diet and exercising, or you could risk ruining all the hard work you’ve done to make your wedding — and photos — perfect. (Never mind putting your health and happiness at risk for the most important day of your life.)

8. Underpaying postage on invites

You’d be surprised how many brides just stick a stamp on their invites and drop them in a letterbox. All but a few wedding invitations require additional postage. The postal service will not take pity on you — your invites will be returned (and rubber-stamped with that ugly “insufficient postage” message) — and it will take at least two weeks (never mind the additional $$) to get them back out the door. Be sure to get one complete invitation weighed at the post office before purchasing all your stamps.

9. Ignoring religious restrictions

If you plan on marrying in a house of worship, you need to abide by the rules. Wearing inappropriate attire or not completing pre-wedding requirements is grounds for your officiant to stop your wedding before it begins. As soon as you get engaged, be sure to contact your house of worship to find out about any potential issues. Some houses of worship won’t let you marry on certain holy dates; make sure to check your wedding date with your officiant before putting down any deposits for your reception site or vendors.

10. Ignoring weather warnings

Brides marrying outdoors often test fate and just wish for the best when it comes to bad weather. Always have a backup plan — you may not have a place to marry at all, or your guests (and you) may be in misery at the hands of Mother Nature. Temperatures normally around the balmy 70-degree mark may unexpectedly turn into a boiling 100-degree debacle; be sure to have outdoor air-conditioning. A hurricane, flashflood, or gale force winds may visit on your wedding day; make sure you have an interior alternative or a tent as a back-up location.

Photo: Zieff Photography http://www.zieffphoto.com

2003 The Knot Inc. All rights reserved.

Marriage Ceremony in Islam: the Basics

Extract and abridged from a handbook on marriage issued by the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA).
The Wali:

A wali (guardian) of the bride is necesssary to represent her in concluding the contract. The wali is a male relative who would be her guardian if she were a minor, for example her father. However, if he is not available, a brother, uncle, grandfather etc. will suffice. If none of these exist then a Muslim ruler or judge, and if they do not exist then a prominent leader of the Muslim community (see Fiqh us sunnah, Syed Sabiq, Sar al-Kitab al Arabi, Beirut, 2nd ed, 1973, vol 2 page 120).

“No marriage contract is valid without a wali.” – Tirmidhi and Abu Dawood

“A woman may not act for another in concluding a marriage contract, and a woman may not conclude her own marriage contract.” – Ibn Majah and Daraqutni

The Offer and Acceptance:

Both offer and acceptance must be explicit in mentioning the word marriage (or any other word in any language implying a similar situation). Both statements should be made at the same sitting, i.e. one party to the other.

The Bride’s Agreement:

The bride must be agreeable to concluding the marriage by her wali. This agreement should be specific to marrying a specific man and all other conditions, if any, must be agreed upon also.

The Witnesses:

At least two Muslim male witnesses are required or one male and two females – all of them having reached the age of puberty and being of good character.

The Sadaq:

The Sadaq or Mahr (dower) is a required marriage gift given by the groom to the bride. It represents his commitment to take care of all the family expenses including her personal needs… “And give women their dower as a free gift.” (surah 4 verse 4)

Sadaq may be money or in kind, but it should be specified in its kind and quantity. It may be paid in full at the time of the marriage contract, or postposed until a definite or indefinite date in the future. That which is deferred becomes due upon divorce. The value of Sadaq can be anything from $1 upward (and must be agreed upon by both parties).

The Procedure:

  1. Witnesses and guests take their seats.
  2. The wali of the bride and the groom sit facing each other, close to the witnesses so that they can be seen and heard by the witnesses.
  3. A learned man delivers a short ceremonial speech (see the khutbah at the end of this article).
  4. Then the wali of the bride addresses the groom with the following words or something similar:

    “In the name of Allah the Merciful, the Mercy giving, Praise be to Allah, Lord of the worlds, and Prayer and Peace be upon the Prophet Muhammed, his family and the companions.

    I marry to you my daughter (sister/niece etc – mention the full name) whom I represent, in accordance with Islamic Law and the tradition of the Messenger of Allah (pbuh) and for the Sadaq agreed between us.” (details of the sadaq and method of payment may be mentioned).

    The groom answers:

    In the name of Allah the Merciful, the Mercy giving, Praise be to Allah, Lord of the worlds, and Prayer and Peace be upon the Prophet Muhammed, his family and the companions.

    I accept to marry the woman you represent, in accordance with Islamic Law and the tradition of the Messenger of Allah (pbuh) and for the Sadaq agreed between us.” (details of the sadaq and method of payment may be mentioned).

    [This offer and acceptance should be declared in the presence of the witnesses, Allah is the best of witnesses. By this the marriag eis concluded and the bride and groom become husband and wife].

  5. To make the marriage publically it is reccomended to have a walimah. The Prophet (pbuh) saw a trace of yellow colouring on Abd al Rahman and asked, “What is this?” He answered, I got married. The Prophet (pbuh) said, “May Allah make it a blesing for you. Make a walimah even with only a sheep.” – Bukhari, Muslim and others.
  6. The best way to congratulate the bride and the groom is to say: “May Allah make it a blessing for you and a blessing to you together with all that is good.” – Tirmidhi, Abu Dawood

The Marriage Khutbah:

[This is not essential; the mariage will be legal without it; however, it is Sunnah to have a Khutbah].

Praise be to Almighty Allah, the Sustainer of the Worlds Whom we ask help and pardon. We seek refuge in Allah from the evils within ourselves and from our evil actions. He whom Allah guides no one can lead astray and he who He leaves in error has no one to guide him. I testify that there is no diety but Allah and that Muhammed is His servant and His messenger.

Almighty Allah has created humanity, male and female, each in need of another, and has established the institution of marriage as a means of uniting the souls in a blessed bond of love leading to their pleasure and happiness in a way advantageous to humankind.

The Quran says, “It is He Who has created man from water: then has He established relationships of lineage and marriage: for your Lord has power (over all things). “ (25:54)

And He reminds us of His great favours: “And among His signs is that He created for you of yourselves spouses that you may live in joy with them, and He has set between you love and mercy. Surely in that are signs for those who reflect.” (30:22)

And Peace and Blessing be upon His great and beloved Prophet and last Messenger Muhammed, who emphatically urged Muslims to marry. He said: “Young men, those of you who can afford to marry should do so. Marriage is the best check for lustful eyes and an effective help to maintain chastity.”

Brothers and sisters, at this auspicious moment, we are uniting in the bond of marriage and obedience to the guidance of our Creator and in obdeience to the practice of our beloved Prophet (pbuh), our brother (his name) and sister (her name) who have decided to live together as husband and wife, sheltered with the blessings of Almighty Allah and His divine Benevolence. May Allah fill their lives with joy and may He grant them peace, health and prosperity. May they always live together in an atmosphere eof tranquility and never diminishing love and tender regard for each other.

Six wedding Dawa considerations

Reprinted from DawaNet.com

Social gatherings are an ideal place to make Dawa, and a Muslim wedding is a great example of this. Weddings are places where non-Muslims can learn about one facet of Islam in a relaxed social atmosphere without feeling they are being preached to.

Here are some practical tips you can use to make Dawa at a Muslim wedding:

1. Make sure you explain some aspects of what will take place at the wedding beforehand.

How should a guest dress at a Muslim gathering? How do Muslims greet the bride and the groom? What kind of gift would be suitable?

These are just some of the protocol issues that may come up during the wedding and could cause surprise and/or embarrassment for non-Muslim guests who may not understand Muslim practices relating to gender interaction or modesty, for instance.

Politely explain to them some of these issues beforehand so they can feel prepared and comfortable at the wedding.

2. Seating arrangements for non-Muslim guests.

What is the Imam saying? What is the oily orange substance being served?

These are some questions that non-Muslim guests may have during the wedding. It would be a good idea to have a family member or a friend who is open-minded and knows their Islam to be sitting with your non-Muslim guests during the wedding to answer these kinds of questions.

Perhaps your non-Muslim guest and their designated host could be introduced to each other as they arrive at the wedding so they can sit together.

In most Muslim weddings, non-Muslims are generally given a separate table to sit at. It’s a better idea to seat them on different tables where your designated host can properly take care of them and they can meet with more Muslims.

3. Provide brief written material about the marriage.

What is a Nikah? How will the marriage be conducted?

Print out this fact sheet on the marriage ceremony and make sure all guests have a copy. This will be a great educational and Dawa tool for all guests, Muslim and non-Muslim. Perhaps you can even print it out on fancy paper, decorate it and make it a keepsake of the wedding.

4. Make sure everything is translated.

Try to have the Imam or at least someone else who can do it, translate the Duas (supplications) and Khutbah (sermon) of the marriage for the benefit of non-Arabic speaking Muslims and non-Muslims. Maybe the Imam can even explain why so much of the marriage ceremony is being conducted in Arabic.

5. Ask the Imam to speak briefly about Islamic social life.

A short, wise speech by the Imam or someone else who is qualified to do it, on Islamic social life will give a broader understanding of marriage and family from an Islamic perspective. It is important that the speaker knows English well enough not to offend people’s sensibilities in his or her choice of words. The speaker should be especially careful how he or she presents the role of the wife in an Islamic marriage. Too often, speakers at weddings have presented a Muslim wife’s position as that of a doormat instead of a partner in a relationship of faith, love and compassion.

6. Be on time.

What could be the worse Dawa than this: you invite guests at 6 p.m. and you, the host, show up at 8 p.m. Please plan ahead to be on time. If you expect a delay, let your guests know what time is suitable to arrive at the wedding.

 

The Etiquettes of Marriage and Wedding (in the pure Tradition of the Prophet saws)

By Sheikh Muhammad Naasirudden al-Albaani
Published by Jamiyyah Ihyaa Minhaj us-Sunnah

The Author’s introduction

  1. Kindness toward your wife when you wish to enter into her
  2. Placing your hand on your wife’s head and praying for her
  3. The praying of husband and wife together
  4. What to say at the time of making love
  5. How he should come to her
  6. The prohibition of sodomy
  7. Making wudhuu’ between two acts with one’s wife
  8. Bathing is perferable
  9. The bathing of husband and wife together
  10. Making wudhuu’ after sex and before sleeping
  11. The ruling of this wudhuu’
  12. Making tayammum in a state of janaba instead of wudhuu’
  13. Bathing before sleeping is preferable
  14. The prohibition of sex when she is menstruating
  15. The penitence of one who has sex during menses
  16. What is permissible when she is on her period
  17. When it is allowed to resume sexual activity after menses
  18. The lawfulness of coitus interruptus
  19. It is preferable not to practise coitus interruptus
  20. What the two spouses should intend with their marriage
  21. What he should do the morning after his wedding night
  22. The house must have a place for bathing
  23. The prohibition of spreading bedroom secrets
  24. The obligation of a wedding feast
  25. The sunnah of a wedding feast
  26. Wedding feasts can be given with other than meat
  27. Participation of the wealthy in the feast with their wealth

The Author’s Introduction

All praise is due to Allah, the One who said in the clear verses of His Book:

“And among His Signs is this, that He created for you mates from among

yourselves, that ye may dwell in tranquility with them, and He has put

love and mercy between your (hearts): Verily in that are Signs for those

who reflect”.[al-Room 30:21]

May the prayers and peace of Allah be upon His Prophet Muhammad, the one who said in an authenticated hadith : “Marry the loving and fertile, for I will compete with the other Prophets with the number of my followers on the Day of Qiyama”. [Ahmad and at-Tabaarani with hasan isnaad. And declared saheeh from Anas by Ibn Hibbaan. And it has witnesses which will be mentioned in Question 19]

After this opening: There are in Islam, certain etiquettes upon anyone who marries and wishes to consummate his marriage with his wife. Most Muslims today, even those who exert themselves in Islamic worship, have either neglected or become totally ignorant of these Islamic etiquettes. Therefore, I decided to write this beneficial treatise clearly explaining these issues on the occasion of marriage of someone dear to me. I hope that it will be an aid to him and to other believing brothers in carrying out what the Chief of the Messengers has ordained on the authority of the Lord of the Worlds. I have followed that by pointing out certain issues important to every one who marries, and with which many wives in particular have been tested.

I ask Allah Most High to bring about some benefit from this treatise, and to accept this work solely for His glorious countenance. Surely, He is the Righteous, the Merciful.

It should be known that there are many etiquettes in the area of marriage. All that I am concerned with here in this quickly compiled work is that which is authenticated of the Sunnah of the Prophet Muhammad, that which is irreproachable from the standpoint of its chain of narration and upon which no doubt can be cast in terms of its constructions and meanings. In this way, whoever reads and follows this information will be on a clearly established basis in religion, and will have full confidence in the source and validity of his acitons. I hope for him that Allaah will put the final seal of felicity on his life, in reward for beginning his married life with the following of the sunnah, and to make for him among His slaves whose statement He has described in the Qur’an saying:

And those who pray, “Our Lord! Grant unto us wives and offspring

who will be the comfort of our eyes, and give us (the grace)

to lead the righteous.”

[al-Furqaan 25:74]

The final disposition of things is for those of pious practise, as the Lord of the Worlds said:

As to the Righteous, they shall be amidst (cool) shades

and springs (of water). And (they shall have) fruits, – all

they desire. “Eat ye and drink ye to your heart’s content:

for that ye worked (righteousness).” Thus do We

certainly reward the Doers of Good.

[al-Mursalaat 77:41-44]

The following then, are those etiquettes:

1. Kindness toward your wife when you wish to enter into her

It is desirable, when one goes into his wife on his wedding night, to show her kindness, such as presenting her with something to drink, etc. This is found in the hadith narrated by Asmaa’ bint Yazid ibn As-Sakan who said: “I beautified ‘As’ishah for Allaah’s Messenger, then called him to come to see her unveiled. He came, sat next to her, and brought a large cup of milk from which he drank. Then, he offered it to ‘Aa’ishah, but she lowered her head and felt shy. I scolded her and said to her: “Take from the hand of the Prophet.” She then took it and drank some. Then, the Prophet said to her, “Give some to your companion.” At that point, I said: “O Messenger of Allaah, rather take it yourself and drink, and then give it to me from your hand.” He took it, drank some, and then offered it to me. I sat down and put it on my kness. Then, I began rotating it and following it with my lips in order that I might hit the spot from which the Prophet had drunk. Then, the Prophet said about some women who were there with me: “Give them some.” But, they said: “We don’t want it.” (ie. we are not hungry). The Prophet said: “Do not combine hunger and fibbing!” [Ahmad and al-Humaidi. Ahmad reports it with 2 isnaads – one of which supports the other, and it is supported…]”

2. Placing your hands on your wife’s head and praying for her

The husband should, at the time of consummating the marriage with his wife or before that, place his hand on the front part of her head, mention the name of Allah Most High, and pray for Allah’s blessings. As in the statement of the Prophet: “When any of you marries a woman … he should hold her forelock, mention Allah Most High, and pray for His blessings saying: “O Allaah, I ask You for the good in her and the good with which You have created her, and I seek refuge in You from the evil in her and the evil with which You have created her.” {Allaahumma innee as’aluka min khairiha wa khairi maa jabaltaha ‘alaihi wa a’oodhubika min sharriha wa sharri maa jabaltaha ‘alaihi} [Aboo Dawood and others. Al-Bukhari in “Af’aalul-‘Ibaad”, Aboo Dawood, Ibn Majah, al-Haakim, al-Baihaqee and Aboo Ya’laa with hasan isnaad …]

3. The praying of husband and wife together

It is desirable for the husband and wife to pray 2 rakaat together on their wedding night. This has been narrated from the earliest generation of Muslims, as in the following 2 narrations:

First: On the authority of Abu Sa’eed Mawla Abu Asyad who said: “I got married while I was a slave. I invited a number of the companions of the Prophet, among them was Ibn Mas’ood, Abu Dharr and Hudhaifa. When the prayer was called, Abu Dharr began to step forward when the others said to him: ‘No!’ He said: ‘Is it so?’ And they said: ‘Yes.’ Then, I stepped forward and led the prayer though I was a slave possessed. They taught me, saying: ‘When your wife comes to you, pray 2 rakaat. Then, ask Allaah for the good of that which has come to you, and seek refuge in Him from its evil. Then it is up to you and it is up to your wife.'” [Ibn Abi Shaibah and ‘Abdur-Razzaaq]

Second: On the authority of Shaqeeq who said: “A man named Abu Hareez came and said: ‘I have married a young girl, and I am afraid that she will despise me.’ ‘Abdullah ibn Mas’ood said to him: “Verily, closeness is from Allaah, and hatred is from Shaitaan, who wishes to make despicable that which Allaah has allowed. So, when your wife comes to you, tell her to pray behind you 2 rakaat.'” In another version of the same story, “‘Abdullah went on to say: ‘And say: ‘O Allah give Your blessings on me in my wife, and to her in me. O Allaah join us together as long as You join us in good, and split us apart if You send to us that which is better.'” [Ibn Abi Shaibah and at-Tabaraani and ‘Abdur-Razzaaq: Saheeh].

4. What to say at the time of making Love

When a Muslim man is about to enter his wife, he should always say first:

Bismillahi, Allahumma jannibnaa ash-shaitaan, wa jannib

ash-shaitaan maa razaqtanna

[In the name of Allah, O Allah, keep us away from the devil, and keep the

devil away from that which You may grant us (ie. offspring).]

About this, the Prophet said: “After that, if Allah decrees that they will have a child, the devil will never be able to harm that child”. [al-Bukharee][1]

FOOTNOTE:

  1. [Some Scholars say that children are disobedient to their parents usually because the parents forget/forgot to say the above duaa before having sex. Ed. of Salaf-us-Salih Page]

5. How he should come to her

It is allowed for a Muslim man to enter his wife in her vagina from any direction he wishes – from behind or from the front. About this Allaah revealed the following verse:

“Your wives are a tilth unto you; so approach your tilth

when or how ye will” [al-Baqarah 2:223]

There are also various hadith on this subject, of which I will give only 2:

  1. On the authority of Jaabir who said: “The Jews used to say that if a man entered his wife in the vagina but from behind, their child would be cross-eyed! Then Allaah revealed the verse: “Your wives are as a tilth unto you; so approach your tilth when or how ye will;” [al-Baqarah 2:223]. The Prophet said : “From the front or the back, as long as it is in the vagina”. [Al-Bukharee and Muslim]
  2. On the authority of Ibn ‘Abbaas who said: “The Ansaar, who had been polytheists, lived with the Jews, who were people of the book. The former viewed the latter as being superior to them in knowledge, and used to follow their example in many things. The people of the book would only make love to their wives from the side, this being the most modest way for the woman, and the Ansaar had followed their example in that. These people from the Quraish, on the other hand, used to expose their women in an uncomely manner. They took pleasure in them from the front, from the back, or laid out flat. When the Makkans came to al-Madeenah at the time of the Hijrah, one of them married a woman from among the Ansaar, and began doing that with her. She disapproved of it and told him: “We used only to be approached from the side, so do that or stay away from me!” This dispute became very serious until it reached the ears of the Prophet. So Allaah, revealed the verse: “Your wives are as a tilth unto you, so approach your tilth when or how ye will;” [al-Baqarah 2:223] (ie. from the front, the back, or laid out flat). What is meant here is the entry which produces children.” [Aboo Dawood, al-Haakim and others: Hasan isnaad and is supported].

6. The Prohibition of Sodomy

It is forbidden for a Muslim man to enter his wife in her anus. This is understood from the verse quoted above (i.e. since a “planting ground” can only refer to a place where something might grow), and from the narrations cited above. There are also other hadith on the subject, among them:

First: On the authority of Umm Salama who said: “When the Muhajireen came to Ansaar at al-Madeenah, some of them married women from the Ansaar. The women of the Muhajireen used to lie on their faces (during intercourse), while the women of the Ansaar never did it that way. Then, one of the men of the Muhajireen wanted his wife to do that. She refused until such time as she could ask the Prophet about it. She went to the Prophet but was embarassed to ask the question, adn so Umm Salama asked him. Then the verse was revealed which says: “Your wives are as a tilth unto you; so approach your tilth when or how ye will;” [al-Baqarah 2:223]. The Prophet> said: “No! (not any way you wish) Except in one opening! (ie. the vagina)”. [Ahmad, at-Tirmidhee and others : Saheeh]

Second: On the authority of Ibn ‘Abbaas who said: “‘Umar ibn Al-Khattaab came to the Prophet and said: ‘O Messenger of Allaah, I am destroyed!’ The Prophet asked: ‘And what has destroyed you, O ‘Umar?’ ‘Umar said: `I turned my mount around last night.’ (An expression which means he has sexual intercourse with his wife penetrating the vagina while mounting her from the rear.) The Prophet gave him no answer and when the revelation came and the verse was revealed which says: “Your wives are as a tilth unto you; so approach your tilth when or how ye will;” [al-Baqarah 2:223] and the Prophet said: “From the front and from the back, just beware of her anus and her menses”. [an-Nasaa’ee in “`Ishratun-Nisaa” with hasan isnaad, at-Tirmidhee and others].

Third: On the authority of Khuzaima ibn Thaabit who said: “A man asked the Prophet about entering women in the rear, or the entering by a man of his wife in her rear, and the Prohet answered: `Halaal (ie. permissible).’ When the man turned to leave, the Prophet called him or ordered for him to be called back and said : “What did you say? In which of the 2 openings did you mean? If what you meant was from her rear and in her vagina, then yes. But if what you meant was from her rear and in her anus, then no. Verily Allaah is not ashamed of the truth – do not enter your wives in their anuses!” [as-Shaafi, al-Baihaqi and others: Saheeh]

Fourth: “Allaah does not look at one who comes to his wife in her anus”. [an-Nasaa’ee: Hasan isnaad and supported in “al-‘Ishrah”; at-Tirmidhee and Ibn Hibbaan].

Fifth: “Cursed are those who come to their wives in their anuses.” [Aboo Dawood, Ahmad and others with hasan isnaad and is supported].

Sixth: “Whoever has sexual intercourse with a mentruating woman, or a woman in her anus, or approaches a soothsayer and believes what he is told has disbelieved in that which was revealed to Muhammad. [Aboo Dawood, at-Tirmidhee and others: Saheeh].

7. Making Wudhuu’ between two acts with one’s wife

When a Muslim man has had sexual intercourse with his wife in the legal manner and then wishes to return another time, he should first perform wudhuu’, based on the statement of the Prophet : “When one of you comes to his wife and then wishes to return another time, let him perform wudhuu’ between the 2 times (In another version, the same wudhuu’ which he performs for prayer) for verily, it will invigorate his return.”[Muslim, Ibn Abi Shaibah and others].

8. Bathing is preferable

Bathing, however, is preferable to merely making wudhuu’ in such situations. Abu Raafi’ narrates: “That the Prophet made the rounds of all his wives one night, bathing in the house of each one. He (i.e. the narrator) asked the Prophet: “Couldn’t you have just bathed once (i.e. at the end)? The Prophet answered : “This way is purer, cleaner and better”. [Aboo Daawood, an-Nasaa’ee: Hasan in “al-‘Ishrah”, and others].

9. The Bathing of Husband and Wife together

It is permissible for the husband and wife to bath together in the same place even though he sees her private parts, and she sees his. This is established by a number of authentic hadith, among them:

  1. On the authority of ‘Aa’ishah (radiallahu anha) who said: “I used to bathe with the Prophet from a single container of water which was placed between us such that our hands collided inside it. He used to race me such that I would say: `Leave some for me, leave some for me!’ She added: `We were in a state of Janaba (i.e. the state of having slept together).'”[Al-Bukharee and Muslim].
  2. On the authority of Mu’aawiya ibn Haida, who said: “I said: `O Messenger of Allaah, which of our nakedness is allowed, and of which must we beware?’ The Prophet answered, “Guard your nakedness excpet from your wife or those whom your right hand possesses.” (So it is permissible for both spouses to look at and touch the body of his or her companion even the private parts). He said: `O Messenger of Allah, what about if the relatives live together with each other?’ The Prophet answered : “If you can make sure that no one ever sees your nakedness, then do so.” He said: `O Messenger of Allah, what about when one is alone?’ The Prophet said: “Allah is more deserving of your modesty than are the people”.”[Ahmad, Abu Dawood, at-Tirmidhee and others: Saheeh].

10. Making Wudhuu’ after Sex and before Sleeping

It is best for husband and wife not to sleep after having sex until they first perform wudhuu’. There are various hadith about this, among them:

First: On the authority of ‘Aa’shah who said: “Whenever the Prophet wished to sleep or eat while in a state of Janaba (i.e. after having sex and before bathing), he would wash his private parts and perform wudhuu’ as for prayer.” [Al-Bukhaaree and Muslim].

Second: On the authority of Ibn ‘Umar who said: “O Messenger of Allah, should we go to sleep in a state of janaba?” The Prophet answered: “Yes, after making wudhuu.” [Al-Bukhaaree and Muslim]. In another version: “Perform wudhuu’ and wash your private parts, and then sleep.” [Al-Bukhaaree and Muslim]. And, in another version: “Yes, you can perform wudhuu’, sleep, and bathe whenever you want.” [Muslim and al-Baihaqi]. And, in still another version: “Yes, and perform wudhuu’ if you wish.” (This last version proves that this wudhuu’ is not obligatory.) [Ibn Khuzima and Ibn Hibban: Saheeh].

Third: On the authority of ‘Ammaar ibn Yaasir, the Prophet said: “There are three which the angels will never approach: The corpse of a disbeliever; a man who wears perfume of women; and, one who has had sex until he performs wudhuu’.” [Abu Dawood, Ahmad and others: Hasan].

11. The Ruling of this Wudhuu’

This wudhuu’ is not obligatory, but is very highly and definitely commendable. This (i.e. its not being obligatory) is based on the hadith narrated by ‘Umar in which he asked the Prophet: “Should we go to sleep in a state of janaba?” To which the Prophet answered: “Yes, and perform wudhuu’ if you wish.” [Ibn Hibbaan: Saheeh]. This is also supported by other hadith, among them a hadith narrated by ‘Aa’ishah who said: “The Prophet used to sleep in a state of janaba without having touched water, until he would get up later and bathe.” [Ibn Abi Shaiba, at-Tirmidhee, Abu Daawood and others: Saheeh].

In another version narrated by ‘Aa’ishah , she said: “”He used to spend the night in a state of janaba until Bilal came in the morning to make the adhaan. Then, he would get up, bathe while I looked at the water dripping from his head, and go out. Then, I would hear his voice in the Fajr prayer. Then, he would remain fasting.” Mutarrif said: “I said to Aamir: In the month of Ramadhaan?” He said: “Yes, in Ramadhaan and in other than Ramadhaan.” [Ibn Abi Shaiba, Ahmad and others: Saheeh].

12. Making Tayammum in a state of Janaba instead of Wudhuu’

It is also permissible to make Tayammum sometimes instead of wudhuu’ before sleeping. This is based on a hadith of ‘Aa’ishah in which she said: “When the Prophet was in a state of janaba and wished to sleep, he used to make wudhuu’ or Tayammum.” [Al-Baihaqi: Hasan]

13. Bathing before Sleeping is Perferable

Bathing however, is perferable to any of the above-mentioned possibilities as is clear in the hadith of `Abullaah ibn Qais who said: “I asked ‘Ai’ishah : “What did the Prophet do when in a state of janaba? Did he bathe before sleeping or sleep before bathing?” She answered: “He did all of those things. Sometimes he bathe and then slept. And sometimes he performed wudhuu’ and then slept.” I said: “Praise be to Allah who made things flexible.”[Muslim, Ahmad and Abu `Auwaana].

14. The Prohibition of Sex when She is Menstruating

It is forbidden for a Muslim man to have sexual intercourse with his wife when she is menstruating. This is clear in the following verse of the Qur’an:

“They ask thee concerning women’s courses. Say: They
are a hurt and a pollution: So keep away from women in
their courses, and do not approach them until they are
clean. But when they have purified themselves, ye may
approach them in any manner, time, or place ordained for
you by Allah. For Allah loves those who turn to Him
constantly and He loves those who keep themselves pure
and clean.” [Al-Baqarah, 2:222]

There are also hadith about this, among them:

First: “Whoever has sexual intercourse with a menstruating woman, or a woman in her anus, or approaches a soothsayer and believes what he is told has disbelieved in that which was revealed to Muhammad.”

Second: On the authority of Anas ibn Malik, who said: “When one of their women has their period, the Jews used to put her out of the house, and they would not eat, drink, or sleep with her in the house. The Prophet was asked about this, and Allaah revealed the verse: “They ask thee concerning women’s courses. Say: They are a hurt and a pollution: so keep away from women in their courses, …

Then the Prophet said: “Be with them in the house, and do everything except for intercourse itself.” The Jews said: “This man wants to leave nothing which we do without doing something different.” Then, Asyad ibn Hudair said: “O Messenger of Allah, verily the Jews says such-and-such, shoudl we not then have sexual intercourse during menstruation?” The Prophet’s face changed such that they thought that he was enraged with them, so they left. As they were coming out, they saw a gift of milk being brought to the Prophet. The Prophet then sent someone after them to give them a drink of milk, so they felt that he was not actually angry with them.” [Muslim, Abu ‘Auwaana and Abu Daawood].

15. The Penitence of One who Has Sex during Menses

Whoever is overcome by desire and has sexual intercourse with his wife when she is menstruating and before she becomes clean must give the value of one dinar’s weight of gold or about 4.25 grams (4.2315 to be more precise), or half that amount. This is based on a hadith narrated by ‘Abdullaah ibn ‘Abbaas from the Prophet in relation to one who enters his wife while she is on her period as follows: “Let him give one dinar in charity, or one half dinar.” [At-Tirmidhee, Abu Dawood, At-Tabaraani and others: Saheeh].

16. What is Permissible when She is on her Periods

It is allowed for him to enjoy pleasure with his wife in any way except for her private parts when she is on her period. There are several hadiths about this:

First: “and do everything except intercourse itself.” [Muslim, Abu ‘Auwaana and Aboo Daawood]

Second: On the authority of ‘Aa’ishah who said: “When we were on our periods, the Prophet used to order us to put on a waist cloth that her husband can then lie with her.” One time she said: “… her husband can then fondle and caress her.” [al-Bukhaaree, Muslims and others].

Third: On the authority of one of the wives of the Prophet who said: “When the Prophet wanted something from one of his wives who was on her period, he put a cloth over her private parts, and then did whatever he wanted.” [Abo Daawood: Saheeh]

17. When is it Allowed to resume Sexual Activity after Menses?

When she becomes clean of any menstrual blood, and the flow stops completely, it is allowed for them to resume sexual activity after she washes the place where the blood had been, or performs wudhuu’, or takes a complete bath. Whichever of these three alternatives she does makes it allowed for them to resume sexual activity, based on Allaah’s statement in the Qur’an:

“But when they have purified themselves, ye may
approach them in any manner, time, or place ordained for you
by Allah. For Allah loves those who turn to Him
constantly and He loves those who keep themselves pure and clean.”

[Al-Baqarah 2:222]

This is the position of Ibn Hazm, ‘Ataa, Qatadah, al-Awzaa’ee and Daawud az-Zaahiree and of Mujaahid: as Ibn Hazm says: “All three of these are a purification – so whichever of them she uses after the cessation of her periods, then she is lawful for her husband.”

The same term is used to mean washing the private parts in the Aayah revealed concerning the people of Qubaa:

“In it are men who love to be purified; and Allah loves
those who make themselves pure.” [at-Tawbah 9:108]

There is nothing here in the Aayah however, or in the Sunnah, to restrict the Aayah in question to any of the three meanings – and to do so requires a further proof.

18. The Lawfulness of Coitus Interruptus

(Withdrawl of the penis from the vagina at the time of ejaculation with the purpose of avoiding impregnation. This can be done only with the permission of one’s wife).

It is allowed for a Muslim man to practise coitus interruptus with his wife. There are several hadith about this:

First: On the authority of Jaabir who said: “We were practising coitus interruptus, and the Qur’an was being revealed.” [al-Bukhaaree and Muslim]. In another version, he said: “We used to practise coitus interruptus in the lifetime of the Prophet. This reached the Prophet, and he did not prohibit us from doing it.” [Muslim, an-Nasaa’ee and at-Tirmidhee].

Second: On the authority of Abu Sa’eed al-Khudhriy, who said: “A man came to the Prophet and said: “I have a young girl (right-hand possession), and I practise coitus interruptus with her. I want that which men want, but the Jews claim that coitus interruptus is minor infanticide.” The Prophet said: “The Jews have lied, the Jews have lied. If Allaah wished to create a child, you would not be able to prevent it.” [An-Naasaa’ee in al-‘Ishrah: Abu Dawood and others: Saheeh].

Third: On the authority of Jaabir, a man came to the Prophet and said: “I have a slave girl who serves us and waters our date trees. Sometimes I go to her, but I dislike that she should become pregnant by me”. The Prophet said: “use coitus interruptus if you like, but whatever has been ordained for her will come.” After some time, the man again came to the Prophet and said: “She has become pregnant!” The Prophettold him: “I told you that whatever has been ordained for her will come.” [Muslim, Abu Dawood and others].

19. It is Preferrable not to Practice Coitus Interruptus.

Not practising coitus interruptus is preferable for a number of reasons:

First: It is harmful for the woman, since it reduces her pleasure by cutting it short. If she agrees to it, it still contains the following negetive points.

Second: It negates part of the purpose of marriage which is enlarging the Muslim nation through offspring, as in the statement of the Prophet: “Marry the loving and fertile, for I will compete with the other Prophets with the number of my followers.” [Abu Dawood, an-Nasaa’ee and others: Saheeh]. This is why the Prophet once referred to it as “minor infanticide” (and not because it is forbidden as infanticide is forbidden) when asked about it saying: “That is minor infanticide”. [Muslim, Ahmad and al-Baihaqi]. For this was preferable in the hadith narrated by Abu Sa’eed al-Khudhriy saying: “Coitus Interruptus was mentioned in the presence of the Prophet and he said: “Why would one of you do that? (note he did not say “let none of you do that”) Allah is the Creator of every single soul.” [Muslim]. In another version, he said: “You act and you act. There are no people destined to be from now until the day of Qiyama but that all of them will be.” [Muslim]

20. What the two Spouses should Intend with their Marriage

Both spouses should enter into marriage with the following intentions: freeing themselves of unfulfilled sexual desires, and protecting themselves from falling into that which Allaah has forbidden (i.e. adultery and fornication). What’s more, a reward as the reward for sadaqa (voluntary giving of charity) is recorded for them every time they have sex. This is based on the following hadith of the Prohpet narrated by Abu Dharr: “Some of the companions of the Prophet said to him: ‘O Messenger of Allaah, the affluent among us have taken the rewards (of the hereafter)! They pray as we pray, fast as we fast, and then they give charity from the surplus of their wealth!” The Prophet said: “Did Allaah not make for you that from which you can give sadaqa? Verily for every time you say Subhannallah (Exalted is Allah) there is a sadaqa, and for every time you say Allahuakbar (Allah is Most Great) there is a sadaqa, and for every time you say Al-Hamdulillah (Praise is to Allah) there is sadaqa, and in every act of enjoining what is right there is sadaqa, and in every act of forbidding what is wrong there is a sadaqa, and in your sexual relations there is a sadaqa.” The Companions said: “O Messenger of Allaah , is there a reward for one of us when he satisfies his sexual desire?” The Prophet said: “Don’t you see, if he had satisfied it with the forbidden, would there not have been a sin upon him?” They said: “Why, yes! He said: “In the same way, when he satisfies it with that which is lawful, there is for him in that a reward.” [Muslim, an-Nasaa’ee in al-‘Ishrah, and Ahamd].

21. What he should do the Morning After His Wedding Night

It is desireable for the husband to go to his relatives who came to visit him in his house, on the following morning, to give them greetings and pray for them. It is also desireable for them to do likewise for him, as in the following hadith narrated by Anas : “The Messenger of Allaah gave a feast on the morning of his wedding night with Zainab, at which he fed the Muslims to satisfaction on bread and meat. Then, he went out to the Mothers of the Believers (i.e. to his other wives), gave them greetings and prayed for them, which they returned in kind. This is the way he used to do on the morning after a wedding night.” [Ibn Sa’d and an-Nasaa’ee: Saheeh].

22. The House must have a Place for Bathing

The married couple must have a place to bathe in their house, and the husband must not allow his wife to go to the public bath houses. This is forbidden, and there are various hadith about it, among them:

First: On the authority of Jaabir who said: “The Prophet said: “Whoever believes in Allaah and the Last Day, let him not allow his wife to go to the Public baths. Whoever believes in Allaah and the Last Day, let him not go to the baths except with a waist-cloth. And whoever believes in Allaah and the Last Day, let him never sit at a table at which intoxicants are being circulated.” [Al-Haakim, at-Tirmidhee and others: Saheeh]

Second: On the authority of Umm ad-Dardaa’ who said: “I came out of the public bath and I met Allaah’s Messenger who said to me: ‘From where have you come O Umm Dardaa’?’ I said: ‘From the baths’. Then he said: “By the One in whose hand is my soul, every woman who removes her clothes anywhere except the house of one of her mothers has torn down all that veils her before ar-Rahman.” [Ahmad : Saheeh]

Third: On the authority of Abu al-Maleeh who said: “Some women from Ash-Shaam entered upon ‘Aa’ishah and said: “Where are you from?” The women answered: “We are of the people of Ash-Shaam (the area of present-day Syria).” ‘Aa’ishah said: “Are you perhaps from that district which allows its women to enter the public baths?” The said: “Yes”. She said: “As for me, I heard the Messenger of Allaah say: “Every woman who removes her clothes other than in her house has torn down all veils of modesty between herself and Allaah.” [at-Tirmidhee, Abu Dawood and others: Saheeh]

23. The Prohibition of Spreading Bedroom Secrets

It is forbidden for either the husband or the wife to spread any of the secrets of their bedroom to anyone outside. The following two hadith are about this:

First: “Verily among the worst people before Allaah on the Day of Judgement is a man who approaches his wife sexually and she responds and then he spreads her secrets.” [Muslim, Ibn Abi Shaiba, Ahmad and others].

Second: “On the authority of Asmaa bint Yazid who narrated “that she was once in the presence of the Prophet and there were both men and women sitting. The Prophet then said: “Perhaps a man might discuss what he does with his wife, or perhaps a woman might inform someone what she did with her husband?” The people were silent. Then I said: “O, Yes! O Messenger of Allaah verily both the women and men do that.” Then the Prophet said: “Do not do that. It is like a male shaitaan who meets a female shaitaan along the way, and has sex with her while the people look on!” [Ahmad: Hasan or Saheeh due to supports]

24. The Obligation of a Wedding Feast

The husband must sponsor a feast after the consummation of the marriage. This is based on the order of the Prophet to ‘Abur-Rahman ibn ‘Auf to do so, and on the hadith narrated by Buraida ibn At-Haseeb, who said: “When ‘Ali sought the hand of Faatimah (the Prophet’s daughter) in marraige, he said that the Prophet said: “A wedding (and in another version “a bridegroom”) must have a feast.” The narrator said: “Sa’ad said: ‘(a feast) of a sheep.’ Someone else said: ‘Of such and such a quantity of corn.” [Ahmad and at-Tabaraani: Its isnaad is acceptable as al-Haafiz Ibn Hajr says in Fathul-Baaree: 9/188]

25. The Sunnah of the Wedding Feast

The following should be observed with regard to the wedding banquet:

First: It should be held (‘aqb – Fathul Baaree: 9/242-244) three days after the first wedding night, since this is the tradition of the Prophet which has reached us. On the authority of Anas who said: “The Prophet entered upon his wife and sent me to invite some men for food.” [al-Bukhaaree and al-Baihaqi]. Also on the authority of Anas, he said: “The Prophet married Safiya, and her freedom was her dowry. He gave the feast for three days.” [Abu Ya’laa and others: Hasan].

Second: One should invite the righteous to his banquet whether they be rich or poor. The Prophet said: “Do not be the friend of any except believers, and have only the pious eat your food.” [Abu Dawood, at-Tirmidhee and others: Saheeh].

Third: If one is able, he should have a feast of one or more sheep. Based on the following hadith, Anas said: “Abdur-Rahmaan came to al-Madeenah, and the Prophet assigned Sa’ad ibn Ar-Rabee’ al-Ansaariy as his brother. Sa’ad took him to his house, called for food, and they both ate. The Sa’ad said: “O my brother, I am the wealthiest of the people of al-Madeenah (in another version: “… of the Ansaar”), so look to half of my property and take it (in another version: “… and I will divide my garden in half”). Also, I have two wives (and you, my brother in Allaah, have no wife), so look to which of mine pleases you more, so I can divorce her for you. Then upon the completion of the prescribed waiting period, you may marry her.” ‘Abdur-Rahmaan said: “No, by Allaah, may Allah bless you in your family and your property. Show me the way to the market-place.”And so they showed him the way to the market-place and he went there. He bought and he sold and he made a profit. In the evening , he came back to the people of his house with some dried milk for cooking and some ghee. After that some time elapsed, until he appeared one day with traces of saffron on his garments. The Prophet said to him: “What is this?” He said: “O Messenger of Allaah, I have married a woman among the Ansaar.” The Prophet answered: “What did you give her for her dowry?” He answered: “The weight of five dirhams in gold.” Then, the Prophet said: “May Allaah bless you, give a feast if only with one sheep.” ‘Abdur-Rahmaan said: “I have seen myself in such a state that if I were to lift a stone, I would expect to find some gold or silver under it.” Anas said: “I saw after his death that each of his wives inherited one hundred thousand Dinars.” [Al-Bukhaaree, an-Nasaa’ee and others].

Also on the authority of Anas he said: “I never saw the Prophet sponsor such a wedding feast as the one he gave for Zainab. He slaughtered a sheep and fed everyone meat and bread until they ate no more.” [Al-Bukhaaree, Muslim and others].

26. Wedding Feasts can be give with Other than Meat

It is allowed to give the wedding banquet with any food which is available and affordable, even if that does not include meat. This is based on the following hadith narrated by Anas: “The Prophet stayed between Khaibar and al-Madeenah for three days during which he had entered with his wife Safiya . Then I invited the Muslims to his Wedding feast. There was neither meat nor bread at his feast. Rather, leather eating mats were brought out and on them were placed dates, dried milk, and clarified butter. The people ate their fill.” [Al-Bukhaaree, Muslim and others].

27. Participation of the Wealthy in the Feast with their Wealth

It is commendable for the wealthy to help in the preparations for the wedding feast based on the hadith narrated by Anas about the Prophet’s marriage to Safiya: “Then, when we were on the road, Umm Sulaim prepared her (Safiya) for him (the Prophet and brought her to him at night, and so the the Prophet awoke the next morning a new bridgegroom. Then he said: “Whoever has something, let him bring it.” (In another version, he said “Whoever has an excess of provisions, let him bring it.”) Anas continues: “And so the leather eating mats were spread out and one man would bring dried milk, another dates and another clarified butter and so they made Hais (hais is a mixture of the above three things). The people then ate of this hais and drank from pools of rainwater which were nearby, and that was the wedding feast of the Prophet.” [Al-Bukhaaree, Muslims and others].

Wedding in Islam

by Mir Mohammed Assadullah

Spouses

Allah, most Gracious says about spouses in Quran:

Among His signs is [the fact] that He has created spouses for you among yourselves so that you may dwell in tranquillity with them, and He has planted love and mercy between you; In that are signs for people who reflect.
Qur’an [30 : 21]

and says:
… they are a garment for you and you are a garment to them …
Qur’an [2 : 187]

Consider this in conjunction with the following verse:
… the best garment is the garment of God-consciousness …
Qur’an [7 : 26]

It requires that a husband and wife should be as garments for each other. Just as garments are for protection, comfort, show and concealment for human beings, Allah expects husbands and wives to be for one another.
And the believers, men and women, are protecting friends of one another; they enjoin the right and forbid the wrong, and they establish worship and they pay the poor-due, and they obey Allah and His messenger; as for those, Allah will have mercy on them; Lo! Allah is Mighty, Wise. Allah hath promised to believers – men and women – gardens underwhich rivers flow, to dwell therein, and beautiful mansions in gardens of everlasting bliss; but the greatest bliss is the good pleasure of Allah: This is the supreme felicity.
Qur’an [9 : 71 – 72]

Whom to marry

Allah also gives us freedom and urges us to:
…Marry the women of your choice…
Qur’an [4 : 3]

Similarly, for the women:
“A girl came to the Prophet (peace be upon him) and informed him that her father had married her to her cousin against her wishes, whereupon the Prophet allowed her to exercise her choice. She then said, ‘I am reconciled to what my father did but I wanted to make it known to women that fathers have no say in this matter'”.
[Ibn Majah]

Narrated Abdullah: “We were with the Prophet, peace be upon him, while we were young and had no wealth whatever. So Allah’s Apostle, peace be upon him, said, `O young people! Whoever among you can marry, should marry, because it helps him lower his gaze and guard his modesty, and whoever is not able to marry, should fast, as fasting diminishes his sexual power.'”
[Bukhari]

Narrated Abu Huraira: “The Prophet, peace be upon him, said, `A woman is married for four things, i.e., her wealth, her family status, her beauty, and her religion. So you should marry the religious woman [otherwise] you will be a loser.'”
[Bukhari]

Mahr

Mahr is the gift that is given by the husband to his wife at wedding. It can be anything in any amount, as agreed by the bride and bride-groom. Allah says about Mahr in the Chapter `Woman’ in Quran:
And give the women (on marriage) their Mahr as a free gift …
Qur’an [4 : 4]

But if you had given the latter a cantar (of gold i.e. a great amount) for dower (Mahr) take not the least bit of it back …
Qur’an [4 : 20]

Narrated Sahl bin Sa`d: ” A woman came to the Prophet,, and presented herself to him (for marriage). He said, ‘I am not in need of women these days.’ Then a man said, ‘O Allah’s Apostle! Marry her to me.” The Prophet asked him, ‘What have you got?’ He said, ‘I have got nothing.’ The Prophet said, ‘Give her something, even an iron ring.’ He said, ‘I have got nothing.’ The Prophet asked (him), “How much of the Quran do you know (by heart)?’ He said, ‘So much and so much.’ The Prophet said, ‘I have married her to you for what you know of the Quran.’ ‘”
[Bukhari]

Sex

Sex is seen as an act of procreation. An eye for the what is about to come is kept open in this respect as well. The following prayer reminds us of God, results of our actions, and reminds us of our commitment to train our offsprings.
Narrated Ibn Abbas: “The Prophet, peace be upon him, said, `If anyone of you, when having a sexual intercourse with his wife says:
In the name of Allah! O Allah! Protect me from Satan and protect what you bestow upon us (i.e. an offspring) from Satan.
and if it is destined that they should have a child, then Satan will never be able to harm him.'”
[Bukhari]

Walima

Walima is the wedding reception given to friends and family after the consummation of marriage. It is given by the husband on this auspicious occassion, showing his happiness and sharing it with the friends and family.
Narrated Anas: When ‘Abdur-Rahman came to us, the Prophet established a bond of brotherhood between him and Sa’d bin Ar-Rabi’. Once the Prophet said, “As you (O ‘Abdur-Rahman) have married, give a wedding banquet even if with one sheep.” ‘”
[Bukhari]

Narrated Abu Musa: “The Prophet, peace be upon him, said, `Set the captives free, accept the invitation (including to a wedding banquet), and pay a visit to the patients.'”
[Bukhari]

By this saying of the Prophet, peace be upon him, it is also enjoined upon us to join in the happiness of our brothers.
Duties and Rights of Husband and Wife after marriage
Allah informs us about the just rights of each other on us:
… the wife’s rights (with regard to their husbands) are equal to the (husband’s) rights with regard to them, although men are a degree above them; and Allah is Almighty, Wise.
Qur’an [2 : 228]

The statement that men are a degree above women means that authority within the household has been give to the husband in preference to the wife because a heavier burden has been placed on his shoulders by another verse of the Quran which says:
Men shall take full care of women, because Allah has given the one more strength than the other, and because they support them from their means.Therefore the righteous women are devoutly obedient, and guard in (the husband’s) absence what Allah would have them guard …
Qur’an [4 : 34]

Advice to Husbands

Jabir Narrated that the Prophet, peace be upon him, gave these instructions in his sermon during Farewell Pilgrimage: “Fear God regarding women; for you have taken them [in marriage] with the trust of God.”
[Mishkat]

Narrated Aisha, God’s messenger said: “Among the believers who show most perfect faith are those who have the best disposition, and are kindest to their families.”
[Tirmidhi]

Narrated Abu Huraira, God’s messenger said: “The believers who show the most perfect faith are those who have the best disposition and the best of you are those who are best to their wives.”
[Tirmidhi]

Aisha has related that the Holy Prophet, peace be upon him, would enter the house with a pleasing disposition and a smile on his lips.
[Uswa-i-Hasana]

Narrated Al-Aswad: “I asked Aisha, `What did the Prophet, peace be upon him, do at home?’ She said, `He used to work for his family and when he heard the call for the prayer, he would go out.'”
[Bukhari]

Narrated Abu Huraira: “Allah’s Apostle, peace be upon him, said, `The woman is like a rib; if you try to straighten her, she will break. So if you want to get benefit from her, do so while she still has some bent.'”
[Bukhari]

Narrated Abu Huraira: “The Prophet, peace be upon him, said, `Whoever believes in Allah and the Last Day should not hurt (trouble) his neighbor. And I advise you to take care of women, for they are created from a rib and the most crooked portion of the rib is its upper part; if you try to straighten it, it will break, and if you leave it, it will reamin crooked, so I urge you to take care of women.
[Bukhari]

Narrated Abdullah bin Amr bin Al-As: “Allah’s Apostle, peace be upon him, said, `O Abdullah! Have I not been informed that you fast all the day and stand in prayer all night?’ I said, `Yes, O Allah’s Apostle!’ He said, `Do not do that! Observe the fast sometimes and also leave them at other times; stand up for the prayer at night and also sleep at night. Your body has a right over you and your eyes have right over you and your wife has a right over you.'”
[Bukhari]

Narrated Ibn Umar: “The Prophet, peace be upon him, said, `All of you are guardians and are responsible for your wards. The ruler is a guardian and the man is a guardian of his family; the lady is a guardian who is responsible for her husband’s house and his offspring; and so all of you are guardians and are responsible for your wards.'”
[Bukhari]

Men should forbear any shortcomings of women in view of the following verse of Quran:
Live with them in kindness; even if you dislike them, perhaps you dislike something in which God has placed much good.
Qur’an [4 : 19]

Advice to Wives

Anas reported God’s messenger as saying, “When a woman observes the five times of prayer, fasts during Ramadan, preserves her chastity and obeys her husband, she may enter by any of the gates of paradise she wishes (in other words nothing will prevent her from entering paradise).”
[Mishkat]

Um Salama reported God’s messenger as saying, “Any woman who dies when her husband is pleased with her will enter Paradise.”
[Tirmidhi]

Abu Huraira told that when God’s messenger was asked which woman was best, he replied, “The one who fills [her husband] with joy when he sees her, obeys him when he directs and does not oppose him by displeasing him regarding her person or property.”
[Mishkat]

Providing for wife and family

Quran teaches us to be reasonable and fair to our wives and family.
House women wherever you reside, accoding to your circumstances, and do not harass them in order to make life difficult for them …
Qur’an [65 : 6]

The statement of Allah in the chapter `Woman':
`Men are protectors and maintainers of women …’
Qur’an [4 : 34]

Bukhari quotes the following verse under the heading: .. the superiority of providing for one’s family:
(O Mohammed!) They ask you what they ought to spend. Say: That which is beyond your needs. Thus Allah make clear to you His Signs in order that you may give thought (to it) in this worldly life and the Hereafter …
Qur’an [2 : 219-220]

Narrated Abu Masud Al-Ansari: “The Prophet, peace be upon him, said, `When a Muslim spends something on his family intending to receive Allah’s reward, it is regarded as Sadqa (spending in the name of God) for him.'”
[Bukhari]

We should always remember that Allah is the one who gives us, we are mere trustees of the funds.
Narrated Abu Huraira: “Allah’s Apostle, peace be upon him, said, `Allah said, O the son of Adam! Spend, and I shall spend on you.'”
[Bukhari]

Narrated Abu Huraira: “Allah’s Apostle, peace be upon him, said, `The best alms is that which you give when you are rich, and you should support your dependants first.'”
[Bukhari]

Abu Huraira reported God’s messenger, peace be upon him, as saying: “Of the dinar (unit of currency) that you spend as a contribution in God’s path, or to set free a slave, or as charity given to a needy, or to support your family, the one yielding the greatest reward is that which you spent on your family.
[Muslim]

Islamic Wedding

By Moulana M. Saleem Dhorat

 

Wedding of Fatimah (RadhiAllah Anha)

Fatimah (Radhiallaahu Ánha) is the youngest daughter of our beloved Prophet (Sallallaahu Álayhi Wasallam). Out of all the children, he was the most beloved to him. He said, ‘The Queen of the ladies in Jannat is Faatimah.‘ He also said, ‘Faatimah is part of my body. Whoever grieves her, grieves me.

When Faatimah (Radhiallaahu Ánha) reached the age of fifteen, proposals for her marriage began to come from high and responsible families. But the Prophet (Sallallaahu Álayhi Wasallam) remained irresponsive.

Ali (Radhiallaahu Ánhu), who was 21 at the time, says: It occurred to me that I should go and make a formal proposal, but then I thought, ‘How could this be accomplished, for I possess nothing.’ At last, encouraged by the Prophet’s kindness, I went to him and expressed my intention to marry Faatima (Radhiyallaahu Anha). The Prophet (Sallallaahu Álayhi Wasallam) was extremely pleased and asked, ‘Áli! Do you possess anything to give her in Mahr?’ I replied, ‘Apart from a horse and an armour I possess nothing.’

The Prophet (Sallallaahu Álayhi Wasallam) said, ‘A soldier must, of course, have his horse. Go and sell away your armour.’

So, Áli (Radhiallaahu Ánhu) went and sold his armour to Uthmaan (Radhiallaahu Ánhu) for 480 Dirham and presented it to Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Álayhi Wasallam). Bilaal (Radhiallaahu Ánhu) was ordered by the Prophet (Sallallaahu Álayhi Wasallam) to bring some perfume and a few other things and Anas (Radhiallaahu Ánhu) was sent to call Abu Bakr, Uthmaan, Talhah, Zubayr with some companions from the Ansaar (Radhiallaahu Ánhum).

When these men arrived and had taken their seats, the Prophet (Sallallaahu Álayhi Wasallam) recited the Khutbah (sermon) of Nikaah and gave Faatimah (Radhiallaahu Ánha) in marriage to Áli (Radhiallaahu Ánhu). He announced, ‘Bear you all witness that I have given my daughter Faatimah in marriage to Áli for 400 Mithqaal of silver and Áli has accepted.’ He then raised his head and made Duá saying, ‘O Allah, create love and harmony between these two. Bless them and bestow upon them good children.’ after the Nikaah, dates were distributed.

When the time came for Faatimah (Radhiallaahu Ánha) to go to Áli’s (Radhiallaahu Ánhu) house, she was sent without any clamour, hue and cry accompanied Umm Ayman (Radhiallaahu Ánhu). After the Éesha Salaat, the Prophet (Sallallaahu Álayhi Wasallam) went to their house, took permission and entered. He asked for a basin of water, put his blessed hands into it and sprinkled it on both Áli (Radhiallaahu Ánhu) and Faatimah (Radhiallaahu Ánha) and made Duá for them.

The sovereign of both worlds gave his beloved daughter a silver bracelet, two Yemeni sheets, four mattresses, one blanket, one pillow, one cup, one hand-grinding mill, one bedstead, a small water skin and a leather pitcher.

In this simple fashion, the wedding of the daughter of the leader of the worlds was solemnised. In following this Sunnah method, a wedding becomes very simple and easy to fulfill.

SOME METHODS DERIVED FROM THE ABOVEMENTIONED MARRIAGE

  1. The many customs as regards engagement are contrary to the Sunnah. In fact, many are against the Shariáh and are regarded sins. A verbal proposal and answer is sufficient.
  2. To unnecessarily delay Nikah of both the boy and the girl after having reached the age of marriage is incorrect.
  3. There is nothing wrong in inviting one’s close associates for the occasion of Nikah. However, no special pains should be taken in gathering the people from far off places.
  4. It is appropriate that the bridegroom be a few years older than the bride.
  5. If the father of the girl is an Áalim or pious and capable of performing Nikah, then he should himself solemnise the marriage.
  6. It is better to give the Mahr Faatimi and one should endeavour to do so. But if one does not have the means then there is nothing wrong in giving less.
  7. It is totally un-Islamic for those, who do not possess the means, to incur debts in order to have grandiose weddings.
  8. It is fallacy to think that one’s respect will be lost if one does not hold an extravagant wedding and invite many people. What is our respect compared to that of Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Álayhi Wasallam)?
  9. The present day practice of the intermingling of sexes is an act of sin and totally against Shariáh.
  10. There is nothing such as engagement parties and Medhi parties in Islam.
  11. Great care must be taken as regards to Salaat on occasions of marriage by all – the bride, the bridegroom and all the participants.
  12. It is un-Islamic to display the bride on stage.
  13. The unnecessary expenses incurred by the bride’s family in holding a feast has no basis in Shariáh.
  14. For the engaged couple to meet at a public gathering where the boy holds the girl’s hand and slips a ring on her finger is a violation of the Qurãnic law of Hijaab.
  15. It is un-Islamic for the engaged couple to meet each other and also go out together.
  16. Three things should be borne in mind when giving one’s daughter gifts and presents at the time of Nikah:
    · Presents should be given within one’s means (it is not permissible to take loans, on interest for such presents);
    · To give necessary items;
    · A show should not be made of whatever is given.
  17. It is Sunnat for the bridegroom’s family to make Walimah.

    Note:
    In Walimah, whatever is easily available should be fed to the people and care should be taken that the is no extravagance, show and that no debts are incurred in the process.

18. To delay Nikah after the engagement is un-Islamic.

SOME CUSTOMS
In aping Western methods sheepishly, Muslims have adopted many customs which are un-Islamic and frowned upon.

Some examples are:

  • Displaying the bride on stage;
  • Inviting guests for the wedding from far off places;
  • Receiving guests in the hall;
  • The bride’s people incurring unnecessary expenses by holding a feast which has no basis in Shariáh. We should remember that Walimah is the feast arranged by the bridegroom after the marriage is consummated.
  • It is contrary to Sunnah (and the practice of some non-Muslim tribes in India) to wish, hope for or demand presents and gifts for the bridegroom, from the bride’s people. We should always remember that our Nabi (Sallallaahu Álayhi Wasallam) did not give Áli (Radhiallaahu Ánhu) anything except Duá.

The Westernized Muslim Wedding of Today

By Reeaz H Paruk

 

The Western Whirlwind of Destruction which has been constantly blowing across this country for decades and undermining the morals of the Youth, of more recent times has found new victims in young men Muslim men and women who appear to be voluntarily stepping into its evil path. And whilst this “Tornado of the West” is leaving in its wake a continuous trail of crushed moral values amongst our young brothers and sisters, the parents are openly and unashamedly displaying an attitude of incredible irresponsibility by aiding and abetting the youngsters in their suicidal ventures.

Clear evidence of this gross misbehaviour can be found, for instance, at Muslim weddings and engagement parties where the type of conduct reminiscent of the western way of life is fully exercised in its most naked form, where Muslim men and women, boys and girls, act and do things that have nothing in common with the actions and doings of true Muslims. Indeed, some of the formalities which are considered indispensable (by modern standards) at these gatherings are in diametric conflict with Islam and reminiscent of the times of jahiliyyah (ignorance).

Notwithstanding the fact that western-styled garments are designed primarily to emphasize the shape of the female body and to attract the attention of members of the opposite sex, these immodest apparels are worn by Muslim women who, in anticipation of the opportunity to show themselves off at impending weddings or engagements, start making preparations on a lavish scale by acquiring the more “modern” versions of these abominably styled clothing. What is even more deplorable is the practice of equipping the bride with several of these immodestly designed suits, and subjecting her to a most humiliating display on an elaborately prepared stage after clothing her in an exquisite western wedding gown and obliterating all her natural beauty with western cosmetics. And to ensure perfection in the scrupulously observed rituals of the west, the bride is provided with a retinue of bridesmaids, flower-girls and page-boy, with their faces similarly disfigured with the same satanic object of attracting the maximum of lustful stares. Crowds of people, including fashionably dressed men, are then allowed to queue up to see the “puppet show” and quench their unholy thirsts whilst trampling under their feet all Islamic standards of modesty.

This slaughter of Islamic morals and principles by no means ends here. Some parents even go further and not only permit but actively encourage couples to meet and speak, dine and dance and roam around together in cars in blatant violation of the Sunnah of the Holy Prophet (S.A.W.). These extremely dangerous divergences from traditional Islamic precepts are becoming more and more common, and their perpetrators more and more shameless. In some Muslim weddings, even dancing forms part of these revolting innovations. In the words of Dr E.S. Sonners, “…..social dancing is fundamently sinful and evil…..It is nothing more or less than damnable, diabolical, animal, physical dissipation”. It is not certainly not beyond one’s imagination to think of the lustful gazes and corruption of the minds of young, impressionable audiences which such diabolical displays are bound to cause. And as an ironical prelude, some invitation cards printed to advertise these most insidious and sinful programmes are headed: “In the Name of Allah…….”. What a mockery of Islamic ethics!

The following are some of the practices that are meticulously carried out during matrimonial affairs despite the fact that they are either expressly forbidden in Shariah, or have no bases in Islam:

  1. The engaged couple meet at a public gathering where the boy holds the girl’s hand and slips a ring onto her finger whilst the two look romantically at each other. This act is void of modesty and completly foreign to Islamic culture. It is furthermore, a flagrant violation of the Quranic Law of Purdah. It is an evil innovation of the godless west , and those indulging in it should take cognizance of the Prophet’s stern warning that “those who imitate others will rise on the Day of Judgement as of them”.
  2. The prohibition in Islam of the gathering and free mixing of the sexes is nowhere else more flagrantly violated than at engagement and wedding feasts. Members of both sexes, young and old, are accomodated in the same tent or hall without so much as a curtain partition between them and to add insult to injury, women, including immodestly dressed young spinsters, are waited upon by men. What shameless impudence on the part of the organisers, who appear to be blissfully unaware of the tremendous responsibility which they must shoulder for the resultant decline in the moral standard of the Muslims.
  3. Another very indecent practice copied from the west is the appearance on the stage together of the married couple after the Nikah. Here, the new husband presents his bride with a wedding ring, kisses her, and then (in a growing number of cases) allows his friends to kiss her too! and that in full view of the hundreds of guests! This is indeed the total and tragic destruction of Islamic modesty and shame.
  4. It has become a normal thing at Muslim weddings for the bridegroom to appear before his mother-in-law to be showed with confetti and gifts of rings, ties, hankies, etc. in full view of women guests whose envious eyes and flattering tongues add to the morbidity of the whole act.
  5. The parents take great pride in making a public display of the bride’s “trousseau”, and advertising all the individual items therein, thus wasting valuable time and effort which could otherwise have been more fruitfully spent in teaching the bride how to conduct herself with credit in her new responsiblities. This show (of the “trousseau”) is motivated by the spiritually destructive elements of “riya”(ostentation) and “takabbur”(pride).
  6. A large number of Nikah are performed in a specially rented hall or tent. The Mosque as a central pivot of all Muslim religious activity is often ignored. It is no exaggeration to say that many people regard a Nikah at the Musjid as “inconvient” simply because they are well aware that some of their ill-conceived western rituals are too shameless to be permitted there. However, according to the Tradition of the Prophet(S.A.W.) marriages performed in the House of Allah, immediately preceded and followed by prayers, will attract the maximum of Allah’s Blessings, whereas this is not, and cannot, be the case where alternative venues are chosen with the express purpose of facilitating the performance of things Un-Islamic.
  7. Many people are known to be labouring under the misconception that the conduction of marriages on certain specific Islamic dates is contrary to Islamic Law. Such beliefs are not only unfounded, but are also against the grain of common sense. Likewise, the notion that it is incumbent upon the bride to spend her first Ramadaan and Eid after marriage at the parents’ home has no basis in Islam.

In recent years, more and more innovatory and satanic western practices have been added by the Muslim commercial elites whose coffers are bursting at the seams as a result of the inflationary trends and economic booms of the past decade. Among these are the European-orientated fashions of printing expensive, pictorially-embossed “thank you” cards, and, more despicably, the insidious practice of a male member of the family escorting the bride arm-in-arm from the comparative seclusion of her home, through the mixed crowd of envious guests, right on to the stage for the ultimate “puppet” show, and all these farcical and morbid, soul-destroying scenes being “shot” for posterity by specially appointed and professionally equipped “video and photography” teams, with a fully fledged and “high ranking” musical band in close attendance! Within the self-same decade, the progressive deterioration of the bride’s wedding-day garments from bad to worse in the very latest and obnoxious “see-thru” materials has been causing grave misgivings among the Ulama , many of whom are known to have turned down invitations from close acquaintances for fear of being confronted with scenes too shameless to comprehend. Several more instances can be cited where a great deal of expense and trouble are incurred over acts that are counter-productive of Islamic ethical and moral values. It is a tragic fact that each year hundreds of thousands of Ranks are squandered in the process of upholding and intensifying these senseless, soul-destroying procedures.

“Lo! the squanderers were ever brothers of the devils, and the devil was ever an ingrate to his Lord.” (xvii-27) “The best of marriage is one over which the least trouble and expense have been incurred” is a most off-flouted maxim of the Holy Prophet(S.A.W.). The Great Master’s sound teachings have been thoughlessly and savagely thrown overboard and substituted by the fast-decaying cultural values of the godless west.

Someone was heard to remark at a recent wedding reception: “Here is part of the reason for the drought….and for escalating Muslim divorce rate….(to heights unknown in previous generations)….and for the downward plunge of the Muslims…. into the abyss of physical and spritual destruction….in this world and the next……”

May Allah grant Hidaayat, to one and all! Aameen

The following article describes in a simple and clear manner the requirements and method of the Islamic marriage ceremony.

Al-Nikah: the Islamic Marriage Ceremony

Mohammad Mazhar Hussaini

 

Mutual Agreement of Bride and Groom

Marriage (nikah) is a solemn and sacred social contract between bride and groom. This contract is a strong covenant (mithaqun Ghalithun) as expressed in Quran 4:21). The marriage contract in Islam is not a sacrament. It is revocable.

Both parties mutually agree and enter into this contract. Both bride and groom have the liberty to define various terms and conditions of their liking and make them a part of this contract.

Mahr

The marriage-gift (Mahr) is a divine injunction. The giving of mahr to the bride by the groom is an essential part of the contract.

‘And give the women (on marriage) their mahr as a (nikah) free gift” (Quran 4:4)

Mahr is a token commitment of the husband’s responsibility and may be paid in cash, property or movable objects to the bride herself. The amount of mahr is not legally specified, however, moderation according to the existing social norm is recommended. The mahr may be paid immediately to the bride at the time of marriage, or deferred to a later date, or a combination of both. The deferred mahr however, falls due in case of death or divorce.

One matrimonial party expresses ‘ijab” willing consent to enter into marriage and the other party expresses ‘qubul” acceptance of the responsibility in the assembly of marriage ceremony. The contract is written and signed by the bride and the groom and their two respective witnesses. This written marriage contract (“Aqd-Nikah) is then announced publicly.

Sermon

The assembly of nikah is addressed with a marriage sermon (khutba-tun-nikah) by the Muslim officiating the marriage. In marriage societies, customarily, a state appointed Muslim judge (Qadi) officiates the nikah ceremony and keeps the record of the marriage contract. However any trust worthy practicing Muslim can conduct the nikah ceremony, as Islam does not advocate priesthood. The documents of marriage contract/certificate are filed with the mosque (masjid) and local government for record.

Prophet Muhammad (S) made it his tradition (sunnah) to have marriage sermon delivered in the assembly to solemnize the marriage. The sermon invites the bride and the groom, as well as the participating guests in the assembly to a life of piety, mutual love, kindness, and social responsibility.

The Khutbah-tun-Nikah begins with the praise of Allah. His help and guidance is sought. The Muslim confession of faith that ‘There is none worthy of worship except Allah and Muhammad is His servant and messenger” is declared. The three Quranic verses (Quran 4:1, 3:102, 33:70-71) and one Prophetic saying (hadith) form the main text of the marriage. This hadith is:

‘By Allah! Among all of you I am the most God-fearing, and among you all, I am the supermost to save myself from the wrath of Allah, yet my state is that I observe prayer and sleep too. I observe fast and suspend observing them; I marry woman also. And he who turns away from my Sunnah has no relation with me”. (Bukhari)

The Muslim officiating the marriage ceremony concludes the ceremony with prayer (Dua) for bride, groom, their respective families, the local Muslim community, and the Muslim community at large (Ummah)

Marriage (nikah) is considered as an act of worship (ibadah). It is virtuous to conduct it in a Mosque keeping the ceremony simple. The marriage ceremony is a social as well as a religious activity. Islam advocates simplicity in ceremonies and celebrations.

Prophet Muhammad (S) considered simple weddings the best weddings:

‘The best wedding is that upon which the least trouble and expense is bestowed”. (Mishkat)

Primary Requirements

  1. Mutual agreement (Ijab-O-Qubul) by the bride and the groom
  2. Two adult and sane witnesses
  3. Mahr (marriage-gift) to be paid by the groom to the bride either immediately (muajjal) or deferred (muakhkhar), or a combination of both

Secondary Requirements

  1. Legal guardian (wakeel) representing the bride
  2. Written marriage contract (“Aqd-Nikah) signed by the bride and the groom and witnesses by two adult and sane witnesses
  3. Qadi (State appointed Muslim judge) or Ma’zoon (a responsible person officiating the marriage ceremony)
  4. Khutba-tun-Nikah to solemnize the marriage

The Marriage Banquet (Walima)

After the consummation of the marriage, the groom holds a banquet called a walima. The relatives, neighbors, and friends are invited in order to make them aware of the marriage. Both rich and poor of the family and community are invited to the marriage feasts.

Prophet Muhammad (S) said:

‘The worst of the feasts are those marriage feasts to which the rich are invited and the poor are left out”. (Mishkat)

It is recommended that Muslims attend marriage ceremonies and marriage feasts upon invitation.

Prophet Muhammad (S) said:

“…and he who refuses to accept an invitation to a marriage feast, verily disobeys Allah and His Prophet”. (Ahmad & Abu Dawood)

Reprinted from Marriage and Family in Islam by Mohammad Mazhar Hussaini

How To Help Muslims Get Married

Tips for Parents and Imams


Sad but shocking reality: the divorce rate amongst Muslims in North America is one of the highest in the world.

According to New York-based Muslim sociologist Ilyas Ba-Yunus, Muslims in Canada and the U.S. have a divorce rate of 33 percent.

The world’s highest is the general U.S. population’s of 48.6 percent, followed by the United Kingdom’s of 36 percent.

Many assume divorce means problems began in the course of the marriage, whether it was communication breakdown or irreconcilable differences.

But there are many difficulties that lead to divorce which could have been avoided right from the beginning. This could have happened if individuals, parents, guardians and Imams had played their role right when communication between two Muslims seeking marriage began.

Below, we give you some tips and advice of what you can do:

HOW PARENTS CAN HELP:

The older woman noticed her instantly.

The twenty-something girl was an American Muslima, her white skin and Caucasian features bore testimony to that. She was perfect for her dear son Muhsin.

As she walked closer to her, she noticed the young woman talking to someone of a darker complexion.

The woman rushed up.

“Assalamu alaykum,” she said smiling at the American Muslima.

“Wa alaykum as Salaam,” replied the sister and her friend in unison, both a bit startled by the enthusiasm and ardor with which they were being greeted.
“I would like you to marry my son,” said the woman barely inches away from the American Muslima, and making no eye contact at all with her friend.

“But, but why,” she stammered.

“Because you are white and you are wearing a Jelbab. You will make a perfect wife for my Muhsin!”

(This is based on a true story, in which the ethnicity of two of the people involved has been changed

*******

While some would be surprised at the candor and bluntness of the older woman in the above-mentioned scenario, such scenes are not uncommon. Many parents seem to think approaching a prospect out of the blue will “reserve” this person for their son/daughter.

If you as a parent want to play an effective role in helping your children seek the right mate, things have to be done differently.

1.Understand your role

Your role as a mother or father is not to be the final arbiter of your child’s marriage. This may be how marriages were arranged “back home” in a Muslim country, but it is not the Islamic way. Nor is this way acceptable to most Muslims who have grown up in the West.

That said, the parents have a tremendous responsibility in the process. They:

a. suggest individuals as prospective spouses
b. thoroughly screen and check proposals, call references
c. act as the third party between the two candidates

2. Talk to your kids about what you both want

Winnipeg, Canada-based Muslim social worker Shahina Siddiqui says parents have to sit down with their kids and openly discuss what kind of husband or wife s/he is looking for.

You may live in the same household as your children and think you know them inside out, but many parents are shocked to find their kids’ ideas about who they want to marry can be drastically different from what they expected.

Marrying cousin X or Y from “back home” may just not be acceptable.

Or the nice boy or girl from the local cultural community who is highly educated and very well-off financially may be of little interest to a son or daughter because of their lack of Islamic knowledge and practice.

Open-mindedness and clear communication may reveal a side of your kids that may be hard to swallow. However, you must remember that marriage primarily affects the two people involved in the relationship. They must like the person they are marrying.

3. Clearly outline the rules of meeting a potential mate

Siddiqui says parents must set boundaries as to how and when they will meet prospective candidates.

Too often, Muslims stray by thinking seeking a mate is an excuse to engage in dating. Dating occurs when a man and woman spend time alone together. This is usually not with the intention of getting involved in a long-term or serious relationship. It is just to “have fun”. There is no little to no serious discussion of future plans and/or the intention to marry.

Dating can occur amongst two Muslims seeking marriage if they want to go out alone, with no third party present to “get to know each other”. This can also develop through hours of unnecessary phone or e-mail conversations.

Setting the boundaries of meeting a prospective mate is your responsibility as a Muslim parent.

The rules to remember include the following: the meeting must be chaperoned so the two are not alone together, both prospective partners are lowering the gaze and both are sticking to the topic in the course of discussions (for more explanation of some of these points see the article 6 Etiquettes of Seeking a Spouse at http://www.soundvision.com).

One suggestion Siddiqui gives in this regard is to avoid late night meetings between prospective candidates and chaperones because at the end of the day, people are tired, their defenses are down. For this kind of a meeting, all parties need to be very alert.

4. Give an allotted time for the meeting

Meetings between prospective spouses must not last for an extremely long time, like being away most of the day to meet this person. Parents should give an allotted time for the two to meet and talk.

5. Investigate thoroughly

One of the reasons for many divorces is the lack of proper investigation of a prospective marriage partner before marriage.

Parents have this heavy responsibility of finding out as much as possible about the individual who will possibly spend the rest of their life with their son or daughter.

Investigation does not mean just asking two or three family friends or community members. Deeper digging is necessary.

The case of one Imam’s daughter in the U.S. serves as a chilling example.

This Imam asked a Muslim brother to check out a boy who was seeking marriage with his daughter. On the surface, all seemed fine. But upon further investigation it was discovered that he drinks alcohol. This fact was also confirmed by two other Muslims. The mediator in this case told Sound Vision that he never would have guessed, looking at the boy, that he drinks.

Aneesah Nadir, Director of Social Services for the Arizona Muslim Family Health and Social Services in Tempe provides another good way of fact checking on a proposal.

One sister she knows received a proposal from a brother who lived in a different city. To check this prospective mate out, one of her relatives went to the mosque this person attends and observed and talked to him without him knowing he was her relative. Her relative found the brother unsuitable and let her know about this.

6. Be honest

Parents as well as individuals looking for a spouse must be honest with regards to their credentials, background and other pertinent details about their personal lives.

Inflating your son or daughter’s educational credentials, for example, will only backfire when checking reveals this is untrue.

7. Take your time

Siddiqui stresses the importance of not rushing a son or daughter into marriage. If you find someone for your son or daughter at a two-day Islamic conference, for example, and this is the initiation of the process, more time must be given to checking facts and references.

Ideally, she says references should always be asked for and checked out before meeting in person. And this goes for boys and girls.

8. Never Be pushy

(Another true story)

A young Muslim sister, practicing, Hijab-wearing, bright (she was studying at one of America’s most prestigious universities) stepped in front of a moving train in Chicago and killed herself.

Why?

Because her parents refused to listen to what she was looking for in a husband. They wanted to hand pick and completely decide who she would spend the rest of her life with.

This incident is an extreme example of the kind of pressure some parents apply to get their kids to marry the “right one”, often in complete variance with what the young man or woman is looking for.

Needless to say, this is not condoned by Islam. Neither is suicide as a way out of difficult situations.

Another form of pressure is put on those who are given a proposal. It is not uncommon to see sisters or their parents pursued by the parents of others who are interested in their son or daughter. This can even reach the level of harassment at times.

Forced marriages are not only unIslamic. They pose a danger to your children’s future, as well as that of your grandchildren. Would you want your grandchildren to experience the pain and emotional turmoil of a divorce which could have been avoided if both parties had had more say in the choice of a partner?

HOW IMAMS CAN HELP

Imams in North America do more than deliver a weekly Khutbah and lead prayer. They are, whether they and others realize it or not, responsible for their community’s emotional and psychological well-being as well.

So Imams don’t just officiate marriages. They have to become involved with them as well. This role can take three main forms.

1. Being a guardian for sisters

Alhamdulillah, a large number of those converting to Islam are women. Most of these sisters should and do seek marriage with a Muslim. The problem though, is that they don’t have the family support needed in seeking the right mate. In most cases they have been cast out of their families because of their conversion to Islam, or they just don’t want non-Muslim family members involved in their marriage decisions.

This is where you, as an Imam, must step in .These sisters need to have a third party to advise and mediate on their behalf. Being new to the Muslim community, they don’t usually know who is who and can be easily deceived. These Muslim women must be protected against abuse and deception on the part of men who may take advantage of their lack of knowledge of the community.

Imams should not wait for a sister to approach them. Once you see such a Muslima inquire discreetly if you can help in this important area of her life. She may feel shy asking you directly, so you may have to take the first step.

2. Vouching for good brothers

An Imam is a great reference for a brother who regularly attends a mosque and is Islamically involved. Helping practicing, honest and decent brothers marry with your “stamp of approval” will possibly increase their chances of getting married. Many Muslim women’s parents and third party will feel a sense of assurance if an Imam vouches for a brother than if a friend or relative does.

3. Providing the right information

The Imam is also the best person to ask to confirm someone’s Islamic practice. A brother may say he attends Mosque X in city Y, but this can only really be confirmed by the Imam there, who knows, for example who attends which prayers in congregation, who comes only at Juma or only on Eid.

As well, Imams are often asked for help by Muslims in their mosque and are keenly aware of their problems at some level. This can also help a third party seeking information about a prospective candidates who attends your mosque.

4. A note about Gheebah (backbiting)

While backbiting is generally forbidden by Islam, marriage investigations are an exception to this rule.

As an Imam, you may be told information about a person in confidence: financial problems, family abuse, drug and/or alcohol consumption, etc. While these and other problems should remain the business of the individual who has told you in general, in the case of marriage, you must provide complete information about someone you know has a problem.

If a father wants to know about the character of a brother who has proposed to his daughter, and you as an Imam know this brother does drugs, drinks, lies or steals, you must tell this father. His daughter’s life is at stake here.

Seeking the right husband or wife is something to be commended for. It is also the responsibility of the Muslim community to help those who are seeking marriage in fulfilling this Sunnah and part of our faith.

The Basics

A wedding without frills still keeps the thrills

(Zawaj.com Editor’s note: this article was originally written for a non-Muslim wedding site, so some of the advice may not be appropriate for Muslim weddings, but it still has lots of great ideas about how to save money on a wedding.)

Marrying is pricey, but creative couples can reduce expenses without cheapening the big day. These tips can help you beat the averages as you map your matrimony.

By Adriane G. Berg

The average wedding in the United States now costs more than $15,000, according to Bride’s magazine. But the two of you can beat the averages, if you’re willing to be creative and do your homework. Here is a quick guide of strategies and sites to get more information:

Use the Web to plan your wedding
There are now dozens of Web sites that offer everything from tips to worksheets to links to professional consultants who can help coordinate your wedding for far less than the going rates. Here are some of the best sites that we found, with short descriptions:

Website
Description
Best Feature
Wedding
Channel
Planner and gift registry site
Allows couples to create a website
Bridal
Planner
Wedding planner site
Budget worksheet and help on creating calendar, gift registry and cost estimates
Bridal Tips.com
Tips on all aspects of weddings
Best site for general wedding advice
USA Bride
Planner and gift registry site
Planner timeline and honeymoon ideas
The Knot
Gowns and an online planner
Online wedding planner (checklist)

You also can use wedding software (which costs $30 to $75) to get a realistic idea of the total cost of your dream wedding. The best programs take you through each component, as would a high-priced wedding planner. The programs allow you to plug in costs in your area, and then calculate taxes and gratuities. They also allow you to print out the invitation list and prepare your thank-you notes. You can track gifts, register RSVPs, track accommodations and transportation for out-of-town guests and even plan showers and bachelor parties.

What these programs can’t do is make your wedding truly individual and special. You have to supply the personality. Memorable weddings are all about themes, colors and surprises. The more unusual your concept, the less you’ll have to spend to make the day a winner.

Know how to cut costs
Here are a few quick ideas on how to trim costs without making the event seem “cheap”:

  • Think carefully about whom you need to invite. Make two lists, with “must-haves” and “maybes.” Cut silly frills and invite more guests. Those imprinted napkins that cost 70 cents apiece go right into the garbage.
  • Keep the wedding dress simple. The more ornate, the more you’ll have to pay for your dress. An off-the-rack wedding dress (yes, they do exist) can cost less than $200. You could use the same philosophy that the grooms and ushers have followed for years: Rent the dress. Check out the local consignment shops. At a shop in New York, I recently bought a Bob Mackie wedding dress that originally retailed for $6,000 and I had it altered to be a formal gown. I paid $55.
  • Plan the wedding for any day but Saturday. Saturdays are the most popular — and expensive — days to schedule events in ballrooms or other reception areas. Think about using a community center, a university-owned reception hall or some other less-expensive public building to stage your reception.
  • Plan your wedding in one of the off-peak months. Nearly 40% of each year’s formal weddings occur in May and June, so everything from reception halls to catering services are more willing to negotiate fees during the non-summer, non-holiday periods.
  • Carefully select the types of food and drink you’ll serve. Choose less-expensive entrees, such as chicken instead of beef or seafood. Pasta is a fine, less-expensive dish. On the drinks side, cases of the same beverage are cheaper than a variety of drinks. Food with a theme can be more memorable than yet another trendy buffet or a heavy sit-down dinner. Have a smaller decorated cake for the formal cutting, but then have a larger, less-expensive sheet cake to supplement for serving guests.
  • Compare prices of photographers and know what you really want handled by the professional. A professional photographer or video crew can run into the thousands of dollars. Have the professional photographer shoot the ceremony and the formal photos, while you have friends and guests take the candids and reception shots. If you hire a video crew, shoot only the wedding.
  • Consider using a disk jockey rather than live musicians. Or, if you prefer the atmosphere of live musicians, replace the expensive wedding orchestra with a chamber music trio from a music school, for a sedate, formal affair.
  • Use flowers that are local and in season. Special orders can run up a bill fast. Use multiple, less-expensive flowers in bouquets. If it’s an outdoor wedding, you may not need any flowers other than the ones for the wedding party.
  • Use invitation stationery that’s light enough when assembled for delivery that it doesn’t require more than one stamp.

The Waleemah (Wedding Feast) in Islam

By Nurul Aiman – reprinted from Mukmin.com
The waleemah is a food reception which follows the consummation of marriage, to make the marriage public. It is offered by the parents of the married couple, by their friends, or by the newly married couple themselves. Friends, relatives, and neighbors are usually invited.

The companion Anas reported that the Prophet SAW saw a trace of yellow on Abd Ar- Rahman Ibn Auf, and asked what is this? He answered: “I got married”. Then, the Prophet SAW said,

“May Allah make it a blessing for you. Have a waleemah, even with only a sheep.” [Bukhari, Muslim, Tirmizi, Abu Dawood and Maalik]

Since marriage is such a joyful event for the whole Muslim neighborhood, playing tambourines and having decent and allowable singing are recommended during the celebration. According to Aishah (r.a), it is a sunnah of the Prophet SAW to announce a marriage and to make it in the mosque.

Once, Aishah organised a wedding feast for a woman who wed a man from Al-Ansaar. The Prophet SAW advised Aishah to do some entertainment due to the tradition of Al-Ansaar.

We must keep in mind, however, that the marriage celebrations should not violate any Islamic law. The word entertainment in the Islamic context should not be misinterpreted.

People who attend the celebrations should not mix in any un-Islamic way. Both men and women should wear proper Islamic dress during the celebration, and the songs they sing should not contain any obscene words or words that violate the Islamic code of decency and manners. Islamic standards must be upheld regardless of the type of occasion one is participating in.

Some people have begun practicing traditions which are completely against Islamic teachings. The tradition of bringing a musical band and female dancer to dance before men is prohibited in Islam. Another un-lslamic tradition is the use of a gold ring by the groom; this was prohibited by the Prophet SAW. Silver rings are allowed for men and women, while wearing gold ornament is allowed for women only.The tradition of trading rings is borrowed from other societies, and Muslims are told not to imitate non-Muslims in such traditions.

A groom should not feel obligated to have an extravagant marriage celebration, as this is a financial burden which could leave him in debt for years to follow. This could in turn discourage men from getting married. Marriage is an occasion for presenting the new family with gifts by relatives and friends. Gifts that are given with sincerity and consent strengthen the love between people.The Prophet SAW said,

“Exchange gifts, strengthen your love of one another.” [Tirmizi]

One should always keep in mind the real reason behind giving gifts — to strengthen the mutual relationships between people. Therefore, gifts should be affordable and given to others voluntarily. Unfortunately, most have forgotten this and the gifts have become burdens on those who give them; this weakens relationships between people instead of strengthening them.

People today write down what others have given them and the prices of such presents and then feel obligated to buy that person a gift equal in value. This is completely un-Islamic, and it does not follow the teachings of the Prophet SAW. Some vary in their social positions and have different financial statuses, and feeling obligated to buy a gift equal to that presented would soon end close relationships between people of different economic backgrounds. This will in turn build social barriers.

Finally, congratulations are offered to the bride by the women around her and by her relatives and friends; the groom is congratulated by other men. The best of congratulations is that reported by Abu Hurairah that the Prophet SAW said to people who got married:

“May Allah make it a blessing for you and a blessing to you, and bring you together with all that is good.” [Tirmizi, Abu Dawood and Al-Hakim]

Marriage is a sacred bond between two people people. It binds not only hearts of two persons, but two distinguished extended families. Indeed, a good start in a whole new life as a husband and wife will serve as a strong foundation for the coming future.

Sunnahs of the Waleemah

Importance of the Wedding Feast

The husband must sponsor a feast after the consummation of the marriage. This is based on the order of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) to one of his companions , Abur-Rahman ibn ‘Auf (r) to do so, and on the hadith narrated by Buraida ibn At-Haseeb (r), who said: “When ‘Ali (r) sought the hand of Faatimah (r) ,the Prophet’s daughter, in marraige, he said that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “A wedding (and in another version “a bridegroom”) must have a feast.” The narrator said: “Sa’ad (r) said: ‘(a feast) of a sheep.’ Someone else said: ‘Of such and such a quantity of corn.” [Ahmad and at-Tabaraani: Its isnaad is acceptable as al-Haafiz Ibn Hajr says in Fathul-Baaree: 9/188]

The Sunnahs of the Wedding Feast

The following should be observed with regard to the wedding banquet:

First: It should be held (‘aqb – Fathul Baaree: 9/242-244) three days after the first wedding night, since this is the tradition of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) which has reached us. On the authority of Anas (r) who said: “The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) entered upon his wife and sent me to invite some men for food.” [al-Bukhaaree and al-Baihaqi].

Also on the authority of Anas (r), he said: “The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) married Safiya (r), and her freedom was her dowry. He gave the feast for three days.” [Abu Ya’laa and others: Hasan].

Second: One should invite the righteous to his banquet whether they be rich or poor. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Do not be the friend of any except believers, and have only the pious eat your food.” [Abu Dawood, at-Tirmidhee and others: Saheeh].

Third: If one is able, he should have a feast of one or more sheep. Based on the following hadith, Anas (r) said: “Abdur-Rahmaan (r) came to al-Madeenah, and the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) assigned Sa’ad ibn Ar-Rabee’ al-Ansaariy (r) as his brother. Sa’ad took him to his house, called for food, and they both ate. The Sa’ad said: “O my brother, I am the wealthiest of the people of al-Madeenah (in another version: “… of the Ansaar”), so look to half of my property and take it (in another version: “… and I will divide my garden in half”). Also, I have two wives (and you, my brother in Allaah, have no wife), so look to which of mine pleases you more, so I can divorce her for you. Then upon the completion of the prescribed waiting period, you may marry her.” ‘Abdur-Rahmaan said: “No, by Allaah, may Allah bless you in your family and your property. Show me the way to the market-place.”And so they showed him the way to the market-place and he went there. He bought and he sold and he made a profit. In the evening , he came back to the people of his house with some dried milk for cooking and some ghee. After that some time elapsed, until he appeared one day with traces of saffron on his garments. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said to him: “What is this?” He said: “O Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), I have married a woman among the Ansaar.” The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) answered: “What did you give her for her dowry?” He answered: “The weight of five dirhams in gold.” Then, the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “May Allaah bless you, give a feast if only with one sheep.” ‘Abdur-Rahmaan said: “I have seen myself in such a state that if I were to lift a stone, I would expect to find some gold or silver under it.” Anas said: “I saw after his death that each of his wives inherited one hundred thousand Dinars.” [Al-Bukhaaree, an-Nasaa’ee and others].

Also on the authority of Anas (r) he said: “I never saw the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) sponsor such a wedding feast as the one he gave for Zainab. He slaughtered a sheep and fed everyone meat and bread until they ate no more.” [Al-Bukhaaree, Muslim and others].

It is allowed to give the wedding banquet with any food which is available and affordable, even if that does not include meat. This is based on the following hadith narrated by Anas (r): “The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) stayed between Khaibar and al-Madeenah for three days during which he had entered with his wife Safiya (r). Then I invited the Muslims to his Wedding feast. There was neither meat nor bread at his feast. Rather, leather eating mats were brought out and on them were placed dates, dried milk, and clarified butter. The people ate their fill.” [Al-Bukhaaree, Muslim and others].

It is commendable for the wealthy to help in the preparations for the wedding feast based on the hadith narrated by Anas (r) about the Prophet’s (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) marriage to Safiya (r): “Then, when we were on the road, Umm Sulaim (r) prepared her (Safiya) for him (the Prophet and brought her to him at night, and so the the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) awoke the next morning a new bridgegroom. Then he said: “Whoever has something, let him bring it.” (In another version, he said “Whoever has an excess of provisions, let him bring it.”) Anas continues: “And so the leather eating mats were spread out and one man would bring dried milk, another dates and another clarified butter and so they made Hais (hais is a mixture of the above three things). The people then ate of this hais and drank from pools of rainwater which were nearby, and that was the wedding feast of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him).” [Al-Bukhaaree, Muslims and others].

Women’s Rights in the
Islamic Prenuptial Agreement:
Use Them or Lose Them

by Rabia Mills
And among His Signs is this, that He created for you mates from among yourselves, that ye may dwell in tranquility with them, and He has put love and mercy between your (hearts): verily in that are Signs for those who reflect. [Qur’an 30:21 Yusuf Ali translation]

A great deal of heartache can be avoided by a woman in her marriage if she, as the bride-to-be, agrees to and signs a carefully considered Prenuptial Agreement (also known as a Marriage Contract or Domestic Contract) that guards her rights before entering into wedlock. This is the crucial first step which will guarantee her rights throughout her marriage, because if problems should arise later on in the marriage, ignorance of the law will not be allowed as an excuse for the woman’s failure to secure her rights. The Prenuptial Agreement can also guarantee a woman many of her Islamic rights, which can be enforceable by law(1) even if she lives in a western country. Arguably women’s Islamic rights are more fair and equitable than the secular woman’s rights in the west, so it makes sense to know just what her Islamic rights are and how they can be relinquished should she neglect to claim them before marriage.(2) A great deal of misinformation abounds concerning the Prenuptial Agreement and women’s Islamic rights. InshaAllah, this article will set the record straight, as much as possible, about what her Islamic rights are, and how to protect them with a carefully considered Prenuptial Agreement.

For the most part, we will address the western Muslim woman who is not only required to obey the Shar’iah, but who must also comply with the secular laws of her own country. However, we will touch briefly upon a few major issues which affect women living in Eastern countries where polygyny (3) and other such Muslim laws are extant. Because of the diversity of laws from country to country, we can only discuss the Muslim woman’s rights in a general as opposed to specific fashion.

To be enforceable by law, a Prenuptial Agreement must also comply with the laws of the country (as distinct from the Islamic Law of the Shar’iah) in which it is drawn up and signed. This will guarantee that the agreement will be legally binding on both the husband and the wife, and should problems should later arise, the spouse will have protection under the law of his or her own country. It is therefore advisable for the couple to have at least a rudimentary understanding of the laws of their own respective countries in which they live. 

Ideally it would be more advantageous for the couple to consult both a legal specialist in their own particular country and also a specialist in Islamic Law to help draw up their contract. We would suggest that the Prenuptial Agreement or Marriage Contract be drawn up by a religious leader in your community (i.e. the Imam of your local mosque might be able to help) and then checked over by each of the bride and groom’s respective lawyers. Muslim lawyers — if available – would be preferable.

The Prenuptial Agreement – points to consider in your marriage contract

It is impossible in an article of this nature to cover all of the possible inclusions which could conceivably go into the Prenuptial Agreement, so we will focus mainly on those points which have a bearing on protecting a Muslim woman’s Islamic rights.

(a) Polygyny

If a woman does not feel that she could allow her husband to marry more than one woman at the same time, then Islam allows her the right to refuse him permission to do this at the outset of their marriage, however, she must indicate this preference in the Prenuptial Agreement or she will forfeit this right under the Islamic Law. If she is uncertain as to whether or not she will be opposed to her husband marrying a second wife later on, then she could include that in the agreement and thus make it binding upon her husband that he must consult her at that time and that he must then abide by her wishes. To say nothing, however, could possibly invite more pain than gain as far as her desires are concerned.

In the West, polygamy (4) is illegal. Even so, the woman may still request that her husband not marry a second wife, and put this in the contract. This sort of request would be considered spurious in the Prenuptial Contract because men in the west are already forbidden polygyny. Nonetheless it might still prove to be a useful addition to the contract at this time because later on the couple might possibly move to a country where polygyny is legal. 

Although polygyny is illegal in Canada, if a person marries more than one wife anyway, then the second wife is cut off from access to her legal rights as a wife completely (i.e. inheritance, mahr, alimony, child custody, recognition as being a wife, etc.) because the second marriage is not legally recognized whatsoever by Canadian law authorities. Therefore she will not be treated equally under Canadian law to the first wife, who could easily go to a recognized legal authority to enforce her marital rights. The second wife will have no legal recourse whatsoever from Canadian law. So this is a strong argument against Muslims marrying a second wife in a country like Canada which will neither recognize nor enforce her Islamic legal rights when it comes to polygyny. Interestingly enough, it appears that the Canadian government is not entirely opposed to polygyny when it comes to immigrants. If the husband and his wives have already been married off of Canadian soil and should they immigrate to Canada, then the extra wives will be accorded equal protection under Canadian law as the first wife.

In any case, it would be a good idea to include a clause agreeing that the marriage will not be polygynous, if this is BOTH their preferences, for clarification between the two spouses and the Muslim community. It has already been mentioned that there is always the possibility that the couple could someday live in some other country that does recognize polygyny. So the couple may want to be clear on this point.

(b) Mahr

This is the dower, or gift from the groom to the bride, of either a fixed financial amount or even a property amount and it is usually given immediately at the time of the marriage. However, either some of it or all of it may be deferred until a later time where it would become payable to the wife either upon the death or divorce of her husband. This is her Islamic right. Therefore the details of its payment should be set out very clearly in the Prenuptial Agreement for this right to be accorded to the western Muslim woman. (i.e. that a certain portion of the dower will be paid at once or within a stated period, and the remainder upon the dissolution of the contract by either death or divorce.) For example, the bride could settle an appropriate amount of dower to cover the demands of life after either a divorce or the husband’s death, or she could arrange for an annuity, or a fixed monthly amount payable to her upon the occurrence of either of those two events, so long as the Canadian rule against perpetuities is not contravened. There doesn’t appear to be anything in Islamic law that prohibits a wife from looking after her own interests in this way in Canada.

In the U.S.A., however, Prenuptial agreements which “facilitate divorce or separation by providing for a settlement only in the event of such an occurrence are void as against public policy.” This appears to mean that according U.S. law, a woman cannot claim her dower in the event of divorce, even though she had agreed to this in her Prenuptial Agreement. So ladies, be forewarned about this issue if you happen to live in the U.S.A. [for more information click here ]. 

(c) Divorce

In Islam, divorce is permitted when serious differences arise which cannot be resolved through reconciliation. However, it has to be the last resort, for the Prophet p.b.u.h. has described divorce as the most detestable of all lawful things in the sight of God. Now divorce is probably the last thing in the world that a couple would want to consider when negotiating their Prenuptial Agreement, but since Islamic divorce law is far more reasonable and equitable than Western divorce law, it would be wise to commit to the Shar’iah in your Prenuptial Agreement and in the early stages of marriage. Furthermore, this is the time when a woman may claim many of her Islamic rights.

There is a misguided notion both among western nations and even among Muslims themselves that under Muslim law a woman will get nothing from her husband towards her maintenance and living expenses beyond her probationary period of Iddat. This is a very simplistic notion and is clearly misleading.

In Islam the husband may unilaterally divorce his wife at any time, without specifying any reason, and a woman may do the same as long as she acquires this right when contracting her marriage. She can do this by negotiating and demanding that the prospective husband delegate to herself (or her nominated agent) the right to divorce herself at any time without assigning any reason.(5) It should be borne in mind that the procedure relating to the pronouncement of divorce can vary depending upon which school of law is followed by the husband and wife.(6) The prospective wife can also have the husband’s right to divorce her curtailed in many other ways – all by demanding and having the required legal conditions included in the marriage contract – and these conditions would be just as enforceable in a court of law as any conditions of a civil contract.

In fact, the modus operandi, even in a so-called bilateral marital breakdown situation (i.e., where both the husband and the wife mutually agree to divorce) is always for one of the two spouses to take the initiative to call the marriage off. So, in reality, marriage breakdown situations almost always entail unilateral decisions and motivations. Therefore, given that there is often an unavoidable, unilateral dimension in initiating divorce proceedings, one could argue that to let either of the two spouses have the unilateral right to divorce the other will save both of them from endless argumentation and bickering that could ultimately lead them to very expensive and emotionally charged court litigation.

Currently, if you live in Canada, the couple must first legally separate for a period of one year before divorce will be granted. It is a very complicated process and each spouse is advised to retain his or her own lawyer. At the moment, a Canadian Muslim couple cannot obtain a divorce in Canada according to Muslim Law. However, there are things which can be done to minimize the trauma and legal expense as long as BOTH the husband and wife are willing to compromise. Moreover, it would be very useful if they both had agreed to and signed a Prenuptial Agreement which had set out various prearranged issues such as child custody, maintenance, etc. and so if both the husband and the wife were willing to abide by this agreement, then the divorce could actually proceed quite smoothly. 

(d) Financial Independence

According to Muslim Family Law, the responsibility for the wife’s maintenance (nafqa) always remains with the husband. The wife has no corresponding obligation to support her husband. The Muslim law principle which has been jealously guarded and enforced by Muslim law courts is that a woman’s property is hers alone. Period. Consequently, any property which a Muslim wife contributes towards the ‘family’s assets’ (i.e. all the property accumulated during the marriage) remains hers alone and is not subject to division or sharing by the husband in the event of a marriage breakdown (unless otherwise agreed upon between the husband and wife). In other words, under the Muslim Law, her ‘Net Family Property,’ remains hers alone and with no corresponding obligation to share with her husband (unless both husband and wife have agreed to share). This is not the case in Ontario law. So to ensure that a woman’s Islamic rights are protected in Canada, particularly with respect to the matrimonial home provision of the Ontario Law, it is suggested that both the husband and wife consult a specialist (i.e. lawyer who specializes in Ontario Family Law if they happen to live in Ontario) so as to explore with this lawyer the legal possibilities of accommodating the couple’s wishes, as much as possible, by finding ways and means to legally circumvent the (Ontario) law with regards to the obligatory special equal sharing of the matrimonial home provision.(7)

It appears that in the U.S.A., the Prenuptial Agreement can successfully redefine each spouse’s property as either separate property or community property, so the wife can specify her financial independence and ownership of property at this time. [For more details click here ]

(e) Education and Employment

Muslim women may restate their God-given Islamic rights to education and independence to work (employment, business, professions, etc.) in the Prenuptial agreement at this time which could be used beneficially both in Muslim as well as non-Muslim countries. Women in the west have already been accorded these rights by law, although in practise the husband may or may not approve of a wife either working or getting a higher education. So it would be prudent for both the husband and the wife, either in the West or the East, to be clear on this issue so as to prevent discord and unhappiness in the marriage.

The Prenuptial Agreement may also provide for religious education and upbringing of the children in accordance with Islamic Law and traditions.

Conclusion

The Prenuptial Agreement can be likened to an ‘insurance policy’ for both Western and Eastern Muslim couples; and for the Muslim woman who wishes to adhere to the principles of Islam, she would be well advised to carefully consider her options. The couple may not necessarily consider themselves to be very religious in practice at the present time, but this could change many years down the road because one simply cannot know one’s future. So it would be a good idea to cover all your bases as it were when considering your Prenuptial Agreement. 

Whether you are a woman living in an Eastern Muslim country, or a woman living in a Western secular country, a carefully considered Prenuptial Agreement will prove to be an important asset to your marriage because (and most couples don’t know this) the standard Marital Contracts that Mosques use, often do not claim those rights for women that are hers and these could be lost if not agreed upon in her Prenuptial Agreement. Particularly for women who live in Eastern Muslim countries, you cannot assume that because your country is governed for the most part by Muslim Law that your Islamic rights will be specified in this standard contract or that your rights will be protected if need be by your country’s law. This may not be the case. 

The reason why the importance and the practical need for a Prenuptial Contract seems to be ignored by such a large segment of the Muslim population is simply beyond comprehension. This lack of appreciation for the need for a Prenuptial Agreement seems to become even more appalling if one, as a Muslim, would recognize the fact that the Muslim marriage (Nikah/aqd) is itself a civil contract. It contains the basic ingredients of a regular everyday civil contract! The whole matrimonial relationship is based upon mutual agreement and consent of both the husband and the wife. From this point of view then, whoever said “a marriage contract is like is like a blank cheque on a joint account containing almost unlimited funds” really knew what he was talking about. Just as either the husband or the wife may decide to increase or decrease the funds held in their joint account, so too can they add any number of mutual rights and obligations into their Marriage/Prenuptial Contract. Nothing is carved in stone – everything can be changed, altered and amended. All that is required is a certain amount of good will and a sincere desire to live happily ever after.

Among His signs is [the fact] that He has created spouses for you from among yourselves so that you may console yourselves with them. He has planted affection and mercy between you; in that are signs for people who think things over. [Qur’an 30:21 T.B. Irving Translation]


1. As long as they do not contravene the laws of the country in which the contract was drawn up.

2. Even in a secular western sense, the Prenuptial Agreement is considered a useful tool because it imposes clear obligations and duties on the spouse, and this in turn can lead to less conflict and friction and can also cultivate peace and harmony within the marriage. 

3. Polygyny = polygamy in which a man has more than one wife at the same time.

4. Polygamy = having more than one wife or husband at the same time.

5. In other words, a wife may acquire from her husband the authorization to divorce herself from him at any time without assigning any reason. This is called delegation of authority/authorization by the husband to the wife, leaving it as her option to do what she likes, known as mashiat.

6. For example and without going into great detail, Imam Abu Hanifah is of the opinion that a divorce cannot be declared without a good reason. This means that as long as the marriage has no problems of compatibility, etc. divorce cannot be given. Imam Abu Hanifah is also of the opinion that the thrice repeated pronouncements of divorce cannot be made all at once. This means that there must be a gap of one menstrual period between each pronouncement of divorce despite his acknowledgement that even under these circumstances, the divorce will still be technically enforceable. This opinion of Imam Abu Hanifah is a minority opinion and as such does not enjoy the status of a generally accepted legal opinion (fatwa). If the husband and wife prefer to follow Abu Hanifah’s minority opinion, then they are free to insert a clause to this effect in the Prenuptial Agreement.

7. This matrimonial home provision in Ontario seems to be so high handed in imposing its regime that one could probably successfully challenge its constitutionality on the grounds that it is against the Right to Freedom of Religion which is guaranteed by the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

 

Weddings: A Time to Thank Allah

By Muhammad Ash-Shareef
“And of His signs is that He created for you from yourselves mates that you may find tranquility in them; and He placed between you affection and mercy. Indeed in that are signs for a people who give thought.” – Surah Ar-Rum, 21

In this time of happiness, when gifts are received, hugs are generously donated, and laughter sprinkles the tables, we must remember who gave this all to us.

In this verse, Yamtann Allahu Alayna – Allah reminds of us of His favour upon us. Every husband in this room, it is Allah that created your bride. Every bride in this room, Allah created your husband. Allah created the pairs and then blessed the pair with love and mercy.

Then Allah says: “Indeed in that are signs for a people who give thought”. Let’s take the time now to give a little thought to Allah’s favour upon us.

Sulayman – alayhis salam – sat his son down one day and taught him about Allah and life. Allah mentions what he said:

“And We enjoined upon man (care) for his parents. His mother carried him, (increasing her) in weakness upon weakness, and his weaning is in two years: Be grateful to Me and to your parents; to me is the (final) destination.”

Thank Allah:

1. Every thing that you enjoy, everything that you love is from Allah:

“And whatever you have of blessing (indeed) it is from Allah!”

2. Thank Allah, remember Him and He will remember you. Allahu akbar!

“Remember me and I shall remember you, and be thankful to Me and do not be ungrateful.”

3. Allah will give us more when we are thankful:

“And (remember) when your lord proclaimed, ‘if you are grateful, I will surely increase you; but if you deny, indeed, My punishment is severe.”

I’ve heard of Muslims that regularly donate half a million dollars to the Democratic Party to have their picture taken with Clinton and his wife! They place these pictures up in the middle of their homes in all pride and honour.

Yet to every parent, let me draw your attention the most noble picture to put up in your home. Allah ta’ala put His majesty and every parent in this world in a portrait: “Be grateful to Me and to your Parents!”

Scholars have said that being grateful to Allah is to be grateful for the Iman that He has blessed us with. And to be thankful to our parents is to be grateful for the hard work they went through to raise us.

Ibn Abbas raa said, “There are three things that will not be accepted if it’s mate is not fulfilled. (And he mentioned), “Thank Me (Allah) and your Parents…” – Luqmaan 31/14.

Ibn Abbaas continued, “Thus whoever thanks Allah and is not thankful to his parents, Allah will not accept it from him.”

The scholars understood this and set the example for us. Haywah bin Shurayh (ra), one of the Imam’s of our Ummah, used to give classes in front of his home. During the class, his Mother would call him to feed the chickens. He would stand up, leave the Halaqah, and go feed the chickens.

Sufyan ibn Uyaynah – one of the Ummah’s greatest scholars – said, “Whoever prays the 5 salah has been grateful to Allah. And whoever prays for his parents after the Salah has been grateful to them.”

My mother in Law, Ali’s mother once told me about when Ali was young. He would come home from school, run up to her and give her the strongest hug. Then he would top it off with, “Mummy I love you.” She would mention the story and then let a tear drop.

As we get older, words like ‘I love you’ become harder for us to say. Yet as much as it becomes harder for us to say, as much as it becomes more precious to the parents.

I ask Allah ta’ala that we not forget this innocence, when we were without sin, when we used to bring a smile to our parents.

Let’s keep making them smile. And In doing so, we would be thanking Allah.

Muslim World Marriage Customs

by Amber Rehman
In the Muslim world, marriage customs and traditions vary as much as the colors in a rainbow.

All retain the Islamic obligatory acts, which make a marriage valid and include other practices, which are individual to their surrounding cultures.

Here are customs from some parts of the Muslim world. Please note: not all Muslim marriage customs are necessarily in line with Islamic values.

India and Pakistan

In the Indian subcontinent, a marriage is reserved to three days of customs and traditions.

The Mehndi is the event where you put henna on the bride and groom’s hands. Marked by traditional songs and dances, it sometimes extends to two days – one day over at the groom’s place to put henna on his hand and the second day over at the bride’s house to put henna on hers.

The actual Nikah is called a Shadi, which is traditionally done by the bride’s side. This is the signing of official paperwork in the presence of an Imam.

After signing these papers and doing some religious ceremony, the couple is declared husband and wife. To celebrate, guests eat of the many lavish dishes that are served.

To announce the marriage officially the Walima takes place as a feast given by the groom’s family. Both husband and wife welcome the guests and mingle with them while people eat dinner.

The United Arab Emirates (UAE)

As a tradition in the UAE, the setting of the wedding date marks the beginning of the bride’s preparation for her wedding.

Although the groom is also put through a series of preparations, the bride’s are more elaborate and time consuming.

She is lavished with all sorts of traditional oils and perfumes from head to toe. Traditionally, she is not seen for forty days by anyone except for family members as she rests at home in preparation for her wedding day.

During the week which precedes the wedding, traditional music, continuous singing and dancing take place, reflecting the joy shared by the bride and the groom’s families.

Laylat Al Henna (literally, the night of the henna), which takes place a few days before, is very special night for the bride, since it is a ladies’ night only.

On this night, the bride’s hands and feet are decorated with henna. The back-to-back feasts and celebrations involve both men and women who usually celebrate separately.

Egypt

Egypt has been exposed to many civilizations, such as the Greek, Roman and Islamic ones. The marriage customs of Egyptians make it easy for a couple to get to know one another, for the families meet often.

It starts by the suitor’s parents visiting his fiancee’s house to get her family approval to complete the marriage and reaching an agreement, which contains two main items: an amount of money, called Mahr, paid by the suitor to his fiancee’s family to help them prepare the furniture of their daughter and a valuable jewelry gift, called Shabka, given by the suitor to his fiancee. The value of this gift depends on the financial and social levels of the suitor’s family.

When the two parties complete the agreement, they fix an appointed date for the engagement party.

When the house of the new family becomes ready, the two families fix a date for the wedding party.

The night before wedding day, the relatives, friends and neighbors get together to celebrate “the Henna Night”.

The next day, the marriage contract is signed and registered. After sunset, the wedding party starts and the couple wears their best dresses and jewelry.

Malaysia

In the Malaysian tradition, the bride and groom are treated as “king and queen for a day”.

During the betrothal, the pre-wedding meeting between the bride and the groom’s parents, the dowry that will be given to the bride is determined as well as the date of the solemnization.

The berinai (henna application) ceremony is held prior to the wedding. The bride’s palms and feet are ‘decorated’ with the dye from the henna leaves.

Akad Nikah, which is the signing of the contract, is normally presided over by a Kadhi, a religious official of the Syariat (Shariat) Court. A small sum of money called the Mas Kahwin seals the contract.

The recent trend is to hold the solemnization in the mosque as was performed during the Prophet Muhammad’s time (peace and blessings be upon him).

Singapore

In the tradition of Singapore, the Mak Andam (beautician) as well as members of the bride’s family will waylay the groom and ask for an ‘entrance fee after the bride is ready.

Only when they are satisfied with the amount would they allow the groom to see his bride.

After successfully overcoming the ‘obstacles’, the marriage ceremonies take place. Relatives sprinkle petals and rice (fertility symbols) on the couple seated on the ‘throne’.

 

11 Food Tips for Your Wedding

Reprinted from Soundvison Islamic Information and Products
Food is the key element of almost any party, whether it’s a wedding or any other social occasion.

For Muslim weddings, it is important to remember that a Walima is Sunnah, and food is normally served on this happy occasion. There are a couple of things to consider here:

1. Start planning well in advance

You may think food is something that should only take a couple of days or weeks to plan. Not so.

You will need to book catering services or make arrangements for food at least a couple of months in advance if you want things to work out in an efficient and organized way. There are a lot of details involved, so don’t wait until the last minute to do this!

2. Write down all the things involved in food preparation

This includes cooking the food, getting waiters and waitresses to serve the food, deciding what kind of menu you want, how you want the food to look, etc.

Write down all of the tasks involved so you can get a clear picture of exactly what needs to be done.

3. Select a wedding food committee

This committee is responsible for taking care of all food arrangements for the wedding. It must work in consultation with you. You will make the main decisions, but they will take care of the details including booking caterers, getting servers, etc. Get a friend with experience in this field to be in charge of this committee. Make sure to give them a written list of things to do.

A note of warning though: make sure that once the caterer has been booked, the food committee doesn’t meddle unnecessarily in the arrangements.

Let the professionals handle their territory in the way they know best. The wedding committee should just take care of booking the caterers, providing them with the right guidelines for food preparation, and occasionally checking up on them.

4. Establish a budget

How much should you really spend on wedding food?

This can only be determined after careful research. If you’ve started planning on time and you’ve got your food committee in place, give them a deadline to get this information to you by (i.e. the cost of catering, servers, etc.).

Then once you have the options in front of you, you can decide how much you’re willing to spend on food for the wedding.

Islamically, weddings should be simple. Consider this Hadith: ‘The best wedding is that upon which the least trouble and expense is bestowed”. (Mishkat)

5. Decide if you want to cook the meal yourself or cater

There are advantages and disadvantages to each option.

a. Cooking your own food:

Advantages:

  1. you offer exactly the kind of food you know your guests will like
  2. you could save more money
  3. you can offer your own personal touch to the menu

Disadvantages:

  1. you will be taking on a lot of work with no professional staff to help you
  2. you must remember that cooking involves not just making the food, but ensuring that all utensils and wedding table paraphernalia are set up properly
  3. you will have to work out how the food is going to be served

b. Catering:

Advantages:

  1. you have one less burden to worry about-caterers usually take care of all details related to preparing the meal, utensils, etc. but confirm this with them
  2. catering can lend a more professional look to your wedding
  3. they may have special arrangements to keep food warm until it is served to guests.

Disadvantages:

  1. it can be expensive
  2. you could be restricted to the menus the caterers are offering

6. “Fats, oils & sweets: USE SPARINGLY!”

This was the title of a section of the food pyramid guide which is used to teach about good nutrition.

If you can cut back on these things in the wedding menu for the benefit of ALL guests (those with heart conditions, diabetes, etc. and those who don’t have these problems) you will be doing everyone a favor.

For instance, for meat, try using lean meat in dishes. You can reduce oil in rice and other foods.

For dessert, instead of serving the traditional ones which may be dripping with syrupy sweet goo or are full of fattening cream (i.e. most wedding cakes) consider servings of fresh fruit. This is a really good option in summer, especially.

7. If you’re catering make sure they will allow you to use your own meat

This is important for those Muslims conscious about eating Zabiha meat. Make sure that you have the option of providing meat to the caterers for you meal. If not, consider switching to another caterer.

8. Ensure the food will be warm when it is served What could be more disappointing than cold, unappetizing wedding food?

There are different ways of getting around this problem. If you decide to get the wedding food catered, discuss this issue with the caterers and see what solution they propose. Some places may arrange for burners to keep the food warm throughout the wedding.

If you are cooking yourself, you can also look into renting burners for this purpose, but check with the wedding hall administrators to ensure they don’t have any restrictions about this (they may say no to burners if they feel it is a fire hazard to have them there).

If burners are not an option, another way of getting around this dilemma is to ensure the hall you book has an oven and microwave, preferably more than one. That way food can be warmed in time for the meal. The drawback of this approach though is that it will require a number of people to efficiently warm the food in time for serving.

9. Diversify your menu

Should you serve a traditional Middle Eastern, Indian, Malaysian, or American menu?

Living in a country that’s a “melting pot” gives you the advantage of serving guests food of different ethno-cutural backgrounds.

Even if the bride and the groom are of the same cultural background, it should be remembered that not all of the guests may be. Also, kids today may be of different cultural backgrounds, but when it comes to food, hamburgers, pizza and french fries, for instance, are favorites across the board.

You don’t have to have an entirely Turkish or Pakistani menu. You can have the main meal of one ethnic background and the dessert of another.

Also, don’t forget to take into account the needs of those with certain dietary restrictions. Can you offer a sugar-free dessert for the benefit of guests who have diabetes? Can you cut back on lots of rich, fatty food for the benefit of everyone, especially the heart patients among your guests?

10. Decide how the food is going to be served

There are different ways caterers serve food at weddings and other such occasions. These include the following:

  • American service: individual plates are prepared and hand-delivered to guests. You will need lots of organized servers for this to work properly and efficiently
  • Buffet style: long tables of food are set up and guests serve themselves. This is actually an option that can save you money because fewer servers are necessary. Also, less food is wasted, since guests take only as much as they want, instead of being stuck with a specific portion
  • Family style: in this setup, large platters of food are brought to each table and people help themselves. This can be helpful if you have families coming, but it will obviously require servers, which will cost more money

11. Take into account clean up

When you’re booking caterers, make sure they are willing to take care of cleanup as well. Otherwise, you, your family and friends may have to end up washing dishes on the wedding day when you’ve got more important things to look after.

 

 

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Posted by islamicwedding on October 7, 2008

Sexual Dysfunction

Dealing With Impotence

I Just Can’t Get It Up!

By Joshua Levine, Askmen.com Health Correspondent

Dinner was delicious, kissing was malicious, her scent was inviting, and the foreplay was exciting. But when it came time to show her who the man was, the little soldier stayed in hiding.

There comes a time in a man’s life where he must face up to the fact that his best friend will let him down. This is probably the time in a man’s life where his self-esteem is most vulnerable.

impotence

When just a single incident occurs, the best thing to do is forget about it. There is no reason for a man to worry about something that almost all men experience a few times in their lives.

Problems arise when this difficulty starts occurring regularly. Men afflicted with repeated impotence tend to be middle-aged and older, with a condition most common in men 60 years of age and older. Regardless of the age, many men who have this problem can be treated successfully.

causes of dysfunction

Impotence results from a wide variety of problems. As with any other ailment, when a person begins having this problem repeatedly, he needs to see a doctor. The doctor will want to rule out the possibility of disease, injury, or side effects from medicine.

There are two basic causes of impotence:

  • Effects related to physically related diseases (Drugs and Diabetes).
  • Psychological

It is estimated that 50-60% of diabetic men have erectile dysfunction. For diabetics, attention must be paid to a diabetic neuropathy – the loss of vibratory sensations of the lower extremities.

Bladder dysfunction is correlated with erectile dysfunction. Parkinson’s disease and temporal lobe abnormalities are contributing factors too. Men suffering from stroke and alcoholism are at very high risk because of damage to the testicles in chronic alcoholism and the loss of testosterone.

Aging is a tremendous factor in erectile dysfunction, often related to a decrease in male hormones. Chronic renal insufficiency is another potential cause. Many drugs used to treat high blood pressure that comes with chronic renal insufficiency can cause erectile dysfunction, and many drugs by themselves cause it.

Recreational drugs are a major cause of erection problems. The number one drug is tobacco. Experiments show that even two cigarettes will markedly decrease the blood flow to the penis if smoked before sex. Marijuana and alcohol are also big causes of erection problems. Prescription drugs are also a big culprit, especially those used for treatment of high blood pressure. The major problem drugs include:

  • Estrogen: for men with prostate cancer.
  • Antiandrogens (flutamide): for men with prostate cancer.
  • Lupron: prostate cancer drug.
  • Proscar: for men with enlarged prostates, can decrease the volume of ejaculate.
  • Diuretics: for men with heart disease and hypertension.
  • Methyldopa: older treatment for blood pressure.
  • Beta blockers: for heart disease and hypertension.
  • Calcium Channel Blockers: new treatments for hypertension.
  • Tranquilizers.
  • Decongestants.
  • Seizure Medications.
  • Drugs to lower Cholesterol.
  • Cimetidine: a drug for ulcers.
  • Digoxin- a drug for heart failure.

Note: DO NOT DISCONTINUE use of prescription drugs without first verifying with your doctor.

treatment options

Today’s medical advancements have allowed successful treatments of impotence through a variety of alternatives. A man and his partner no longer have to deal with the void of sexual displeasures. A man that suffers from repetitive erection loss should consult a specialist.

In general, the specialist will conduct a physical examination and laboratory investigation. This will allow him to get a good handle on the diagnosis, at which point he will proceed to explore the various treatment options. The question is how should a man with erectile dysfunction be treated in an era of vacuum pumps, penile injections, medications and prostheses? You should consult your doctor for advice on which treatment is best for you.

The treatment options should be specific towards the patient, his partner, and what he wants to do about it. There are a couple of factors that are considered when recommending a treatment. Some of them are:

  • The patient’s age.
  • The total health status.
  • Does the patient have good functioning of his lower and upper extremities?
  • Does this patient have numerous sexual partners?
  • Is the patient’s partner involved in the decision making process?
  • What are the goals of the therapy?

finding a specialist

The best way to find an impotence specialist is to look for a board certified Urologist with an interest or additional training in impotence. Usually, after identifying a Urologist in your area, a call to the office will help you decide if the physician has the interest and compassion to treat the problem.

It is important that you feel comfortable and trust your Urologist, so don’t be intimidated to ask to speak to the doctor to see if the “fit” is right. Always ask about credentials and if the physician regularly attends conferences to keep up on the changes. Usually, a physician who is involved in clinical research is on the cutting edge. Here are a couple of resources:

  • (Readers in the USA can call) Impotence Anonymous and I-ANON. Call 1-800-669-1603 for information on local support groups. Call 1-800-867-7042 for names of physicians in your area who have a special interest in treating impotence.
  • In general, the local hospital or clinic will have a listing of the support groups that can best provide the right sources to help the individual suffering from impotence.

a little tip…

If your woman gives you the third degree for your erectile dysfunction, play reverse psychology and ask her, “Why can’t you get it up for me?”. Switching the roles will allow her to understand how it feels to have her self-esteem attacked. Don’t be condescending in the process, but let her understand how you feel.

Dealing With Premature Ejaculation

By D. Zimmer, Sexual Advisor to Askmen.com

In my line of work, I often get asked by people what my most frequently asked question is. This is easy — it is by far “How do I solve my premature ejaculation problems?” This week, we will look at ways to cure this problem that plagues many men.

According to University of Chicago sociologist Edward Laumann, lead author of a comprehensive new US sex study, 31% of men and 43% of women suffer from some form of sexual dysfunction.

The study, published last year in the Journal of the American Medical Association, was based on data from the 1992 National Health and Social Life Survey, a collection of interviews with 1,749 women and 1,410 men aged 18 to 59.

One-third of men said they had recurring problems with climaxing too early, 14 percent said they had no interest in sex and 8 percent said they regularly experienced no pleasure from sex.

Women, on the other hand, were a different story. A third said they regularly didn’t want sex, 26 percent said they regularly didn’t reach orgasm and 23 percent said sex was not pleasurable.

Same Causes

In both sexes, these problems were attributed to emotional and stress problems including poor health, poor quality of life and prior traumatic sexual experiences.

Although premature ejaculation is the most common sexual dysfunction, it is very difficult for men to discuss. A man who can’t get it up or keep it up, understandably feels like less of a man. However, it should not be this way. If more men were willing to talk about their problem, it would be easier to accept, knowing that they are not alone.

Often, men are not sure what is considered premature ejaculation. The average male takes less than 3 minutes from the time of insertion till he ejaculates.

According to the technical definition, it is ejaculation that occurs prior to when a man wishes, or too quickly during intercourse to satisfy the partner. This usually leads to the loss of a usable erection for the simple reason that their discharge has temporarily released a state of elevated sexual tension.

Although the complaint is usually stated in terms of time, this is because it is the only way to measure and compare. The issue, however, is really about control of the ejaculatory process and releasing when you feel ready. Men are usually more upset about the lack of a vote or influence over when they ejaculate.

One man might feel proud to last ten minutes, while this may be too short for another. Like the saying goes, one man’s trash is another man’s treasure.

Learned Behavior

From the point of view of reproduction, early release is not a major problem. Lasting longer in bed serves no known genetic function. It is something that we must learn to do, as opposed to being innate.

First, one must understand what is happening to his body when he ejaculates. Orgasm consists of two stages. The first begins with the prostate gland, which encircles the urethra like a tiny donut above the base of the penis. This contracts and releases its fluids, along with the contents of the seminal vesicle, into the urethra.

The second phase occurs when the pelvic muscle contracts strongly around the bulb, forcing the fluid out under considerable pressure. Men should be aware that it is possible to ejaculate without having an orgasm and vice versa.

Therapy Helps

The good news is that this is a problem that is highly curable, providing the man is willing to get help and invest the time and effort needed. It is believed that 80-90% of men are able to learn better control through therapy.

The first step to lasting longer is to become familiar with one’s self. Be comfortable with your body, its sensations and the feelings leading up to orgasm. You should learn and be able to predict when the orgasm will occur. This will prevent it from creeping up on you and taking you by surprise. This will also help you do what is necessary to prevent you from reaching that “point of no return.”

The “stop and start” method involves bringing yourself just before the point of no return, and stopping all movement before it is too late. When the urgency to ejaculate subsides, start thrusting again, and repeat several times.

This can also be practiced using your partner’s hand, mouth or even by yourself. It may require some trial and error, as you may pass that point accidentally.

Breathe In, Breathe Out

Many people are not aware of it, but proper breathing can help develop ejaculatory control. This is because taking a few deep breaths can help you relax and calm the arousal and tension that leads to quick ejaculations. Practice deep, easy, relaxed breathing and relax your entire body.

Communication is another key to long-lasting sex. Let your partner know when you are getting close and what you can and cannot handle. This will involve the use of actual words, since non-verbal cues are easily misunderstood. “Stop,” “Hold it,” “Start,” and “More,” are obvious choices and anything else that’s short and clear, is acceptable.

Other causes of premature ejaculation are anxiety, fear or discomfort with your partner. Premature ejaculation is less likely to occur if the couple knows each other well; feels comfortable with one another; both partners are consenting; in a comfortable, relaxed and private setting; and after contraception issues have been discussed.

Many men can also last longer the second time around, so perhaps this can be incorporated into your love-making. If round one is short, please her with some extended foreplay using your mouth, or with an erotic massage during half-time until your soldier is ready for battle once again.

Dream Cream

Desensitizing creams lessen the sensations felt by men during intercourse so that they can last longer. The problem that many men feel is that these creams make intercourse less pleasurable due to the decreased stimulation.

Condoms reduce the amount of stimulation experienced during sex. Many men find that a condom makes them last longer because of the decreased stimulation. As you all know, condoms provide the best protection against STDs (sexually transmitted diseases) and pregnancy, so they have added benefits.

The position of lovemaking may also affect a man’s ability to last in bed. The ‘missionary’ position, with the man on top, is not the best position while attempting to control ejaculation. All men, however, are different and some men find it harder to hold themselves when their partner is in control.

Experiment and vary the positions according to what allows you to control yourself better.

Pump It Up!

Finally, strong, well developed pelvic muscles will allow you better control and make you more aware of what is happening in your nether regions. Pelvic floor muscles are the ones used to stop and start urination. Hold the muscles for three seconds, relax for three seconds, and repeat ten times.

You can do this at anytime and in anyplace. Eventually, you should be able to work your way up to 100 ten-second contractions per day.

Premature ejaculation can be easily countered with patience, effort and knowledge. Informing yourself is the first step, and once you know about the problem, you are halfway there. Overcoming the mental and physical aspects of this problems are also much easier if both partners are involved, aware of the situation and open to discuss it.

Once again, communication will be your strongest asset. Good luck to you all, and the questions and answers will return next week.

 

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Posted by islamicwedding on October 7, 2008

Prohibited Sexual Acts in Islam

Islamic Ruling on Anal Sex

Reprinted from IslamOnline.com’s Fatwa Bank

Title of Fatwa:

Islamic Ruling on Anal Sex

Date of Fatwa:

15/ March/ 2001

Date of Reply:

15/ March/ 2001

Topic of Fatwa:

Sexual Relations

Question of Fatwa:

What does Islam say about anal sex? What are the consequences of having anal sex? What if I had anal sex with my wife?

Name of Mufti:

Islam Online Fatwa Committee

Content of Reply:

See Below

In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

All praise and thanks are due to Allah, and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger.

Almighty Allah says in the Qur’an: “Your wives are a tilth for you, so go to your tilth, when or how you will, and send (good deeds, or ask Allah to bestow upon you pious offspring) for your ownselves beforehand. And fear Allah, and know that you are to meet Him (in the Hereafter), and give good tidings to the believers.” (Al-Baqarah: 223)

In the foregoing verse the word Harth (tilth) indicates that only vaginal sex is permissible in Islam, because it is from this place children are produced. The semen lodged in the womb from which offsprings come is likened to the seeds that are planted in the ground, bringing vegetation. Both of them are substances from which something else is produced.

All Muslim jurists agree that anal sex is Haram, based on the Hadith of the Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him: “Do not have anal sex with women.” (Reported by Ahmad, At-Tirmidhi, An-Nasaa’i, and Ibn Majah.)

Khuzaymah Ibn Thaabit, may Allah be pleased with him, also reports that the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said: “Allah is not too shy to tell you the truth: Do not have sex with your wives in the anus.” (Reported by Ahmad, 5/213.)

Ibn `Abbaas, may Allah be pleased with him, narrates: “The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, said: “Allah will not look at a man who has anal sex with his wife.” (Reported by Ibn Abi Shaybah, 3/529, and At-Tirmidhi classified it as an authentic Hadith, 1165.)

Further, it is reported that the Prophet, peace and blessing be upon him, referred to such an act as “minor sodomy.” (Reported by Ahmad and An-Nasaa’i.)

However, it is allowed to caress the wife and stimulate her around the anus, without having sex in this area. It is reported that `Umar Ibn Al-Khattaab, may Allah be pleased with him, came one day to the Prophet and said, “O Messenger of Allah, I am ruined!” “What has ruined you?” asked the Prophet. He replied, “Last night I turned my wife over,” meaning that he had had vaginal intercourse with her from the back. The Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, did not say anything to him until the verse cited above was revealed. Then he told him, “From the front or the back, but avoid the anus and intercourse during menstruation.” (Reported by Ahmad and At-Tirmidhi.)

If one does have anal sex with his wife, he has committed a grave sin, which requires repentance. He should regret and feel contrite for committing such a sin. Allah Almighty destroyed a whole nation who were accustomed to this evil habit.

But the wife is not considered divorced as many people think, because there is no evidence to support this view. However, scholars maintain that if a man habitually does this or insists on having anal sex with his wife, she has the right to ask for a divorce, because he is considered an evildoer who is causing harm by his action, and also because the purpose of marriage cannot be achieved through this action.

The wife has to resist this evil action and refuse to respond to her husband’s desire to have anal sex. She should remind him of Allah as well as the punishment of those who transgresses the Bounds set by Allah.

Allah Almighty knows best.

Note: All Fatwas published on Islamonline.net represent the juristic views and opinions of eminent scholars and Muftis. They do not necessarily form a juristic approach upheld by the website.

Defining Pornography

Author: a young Muslim
Reprinted from Young Muslims, ymonline.org, edited slightly by Zawaj.com for readability

Have you ever notice the magazines staring at you from one side of the checkout lane of every supermarket? I have. So one day I decided to take action. I turned the first magazine in every row to its backside. Not surprisingly, when I returned the next day they were turned back. Why did I turn them over? Because they were pornographic. Why were they turned back? Because they sell.

Perhaps most Muslims think that pornography is only that uncensored filth that is accessible through XXX movies and certain Internet sites, but in fact, by Islamic standards, much of what is considered normal in American advertising is actually pornographic. The purpose of flailing these seductive images is to arouse the lower desires of people and to weaken their self-restrain and taint their thoughts. It bombards the Muslim, especially the youth, with indecent and suggestively seductive images. Unfortunately, most Muslims are so oblivious of the presence and influence of these Shaytanic (Satanic) images, that they regularly view them through various types of media.

Defining Pornography

Pornography is defined in the English language as an indecent form of art or literature. Islam also views it as indecent and terms it as faahisha in the Quran.

Allah says (what means):

“Say: The things that my Lord has indeed forbidden are: shameful deeds whether open or secret…”

Faahishah is translated as “shameful deeds” because it refers to every bad deed that is noticeably ugly to human beings. In many places in the Quran, Allah (swt) refers to zinaa, adultery and fornication as a faahishah. In another verse, Allah (swt) refers to the marrying of one’s father’s wife also as being a faahishah because, like adultery, anyone with a pure nature will clearly see it as hideous. Allah (swt) also calls the crime of the people of Lut (as), homosexuality, a faahishah. Likewise to view pictures of nudity, sexual suggestion, intimacy between two people, or a person of the opposite gender who is improperly covered (Islamically) is also an ugly sin to anyone who wishes to adhere to piety.

Television

One of the most pervasive tools of pornography is the television. Shows like “Dawson’s Creek” and “Baywatch” have no other purpose except to display blatant degrees of nakedness and indecent scenes of intimacy. Movies also succeed in conveying lewd imagery by almost always including a love/lust story in the story line. However there are other forms of pornography on TV that are much more subtle. For example, most Muslims would not realize that the viewing of several sports events includes pornographic images. The swimsuits that are worn by both men and woman during the Olympics are iniquitously revealing. They expose the ‘awrah of a woman and a man for their respective genders and the opposite gender.

The word ‘awrah refers to those parts of the body which are Islamically prohibited to expose in front of another (either the opposite gender or the same gender). For example, it is a must for a woman to cover all of her body except for her face and hands in front of men who are permissible for her to marry – that is her ‘awrah. Likewise the man’s ‘awrah is everything between his navel and knees while in front of a woman or a man. The skimpy swimsuits worn by these athletes just don’t meet the Islamic dress code.

Underwear Ads

Another subtle example regards women who view advertisements that contain pictures of other women modeling bras and underwear. The ‘awrah of Muslim women in front of other Muslim women doesn’t allow these areas of the body to be exposed and hence it is haram for even a woman to view them.

It is also important to keep in mind that a person could be “clothed but naked” as Rasoolullah (saws) said. For example, competitors in races usually wear some sort of bodysuit that adheres very tightly to their skin and the exact shape of their body parts is apparent. This is almost equivalent to being naked, since it doesn’t take much imagination to figure out what is under such type of clothing.

Lowering the Gaze

When such images become prevalent in a society, what is deemed pornographic changes drastically. The very standard of modesty, which should be a defining characteristic of Muslim dress and behavior, will become degraded. The Islamic standard must be upheld. The true believer fears Allah’s judgement and knows that no act will go unaccounted for and that even his own eyes will bear witness against him on the Day of Judgement. Allah (swt) says: “Until, when they reach it (Hell-Fire) their hearing and eyes and skin will testify against them as to what they used to do.” Rasoolullah (saws) warned us that there is a zinaa of the eyes just as there is a zinaa of the private parts.

The Islamic solution to living in a society where pornographic images are so visible is to lower one’s gaze.

Allah (swt) says:

“Say to the believing men that they should lower their gaze and guard their modesty: that will make for greater purity for them: and Allah is well aquainted with all they do. And say to the believing women that they should lower their gaze and guard their modesty; that they should not display their beauty and ornaments except what (must ordinarily) appear thereof… “

The scholars of tafseer say that this means that both men and woman are obliged to direct their sight away from that which is haram and that there is no harm in looking at that which is halal (such as viewing one’s spouse while they are uncovered).

In regard to these verses Ibn al-Qayyim (rahimahullah) says:

“So He (Allah) put purity after lowering of the gaze and protecting of the private parts. For this reason lowering the gaze away from the prohibited things warrants three great benefits. The first of them is the sweetness of Imaan and the pleasure that comes from it, which is more sweet and pleasing than that which he diverted his eyes away from for Allah’s sake. Verily, whoever abandons a thing for Allah’s sake, He (swt) compensates him with better than it…The second benefit is a light in the heart and quality of intuition… and the third benefit is the strength of the heart and steadfastness and courage. So Allah (swt) would give him, by His strength, the ability of wisdom and substantiation, and the devil would flee from him as it has been mentioned in the saying, “Whoever fears his whims, the devil would race out of his shadow.”

Indeed, the opposite is also true. This is because the eyes are the most direct path to the heart. One who allows his whims to overwhelm him and indulges his eyes in the viewing of haram things has weakened his heart, corrupted his soul, and invited shaytan to control him.

Zina – a Major Sin

By Imam Shamsuddin Adh-Dhahabi
Allah ta`ala says: “Do not come near Zina, for it is a shameful deed and an evil path.” 17:32

“The male and female who commit fornication – flog each one of them with one hundred lashes, and do not let compassion for the two of them keep you from (complying with) Allah’s religion, if you believe in Allah and the Last Day. And let a group of believers witness their punishment.” [24:2]

The Jurists say that the last verse quoted above is the punishment for fornicators who have never been married. If a person was ever married before committing the crime of Zina, he or she is to be punished by stoning to death. This is established by the practise of the Prophet sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam. If they are not punished in this world and die without repentance (by regretting, leaving the sin, and so forth), they will be punished in the Fire with whips of fire.

In a tradition transmitted by Bukhari, on the authority of Samurah ibn Jundab (raa), concerning a dream of the Prophet in which the Prophet accompanied by Jibreel and Mikaail, the Prophet (saws) said: “We went on and arrived near a pit which was like an oven, out of which we could hear cries. We glanced into it and saw naked men and women, who cried out when the flames reached them from below. I asked, “Who are these, o Jibreel?” He replied: “Males and females who have committed fornication.”

In explaining the meaning of the verse concerning Hell, “It has seven gates, to each of these gates a class (of sinners) is assigned.” (15:44); `Ataa says: “The most severe of these gates in terms of heat, pain, sorrow, and stinking air is the gate for the doers of fornication, who did it (even) after knowing the awfulness of it.”

Homosexuality

By Dr. Abu Ameenah Bilal Philips

 

Homosexuality and lesbianism have been dubbed “alternative life-styles,” “personal preference,” “a natural variation,” etc. in the West today. Where homosexuality was considered an illness by the Association of Psychiatrists, it is now removed from the list and replaced by homophobia (the dislike of homosexuals and homosexuality). Consequently, Islam and Muslims are considered intolerant and biased due to their continued opposition. Arguments in favor of tolerance to homosexuals are based on the assumption that homosexual behavior is biologically based and not merely learned from society.

1. Early opposition to homosexuality was based on the argument that such behavior was unnatural. Sodomy cannot produce children which is one of the main natural consequences of sexual relations. “Mother Nature” did not make us that way, it was argued. To counter such arguments homosexual researchers scoured the earth until they found supposed homosexual behavior among the animal kingdom. They found that the males of some species of exotic fishes off the coast of Japan imitated the behavior of females of the species in order to prevent other males from impregnating their mates, and some rare butterflies from islands of the coast of Africa also had males exhibiting female behavior during mating season, etc. However, if the animal kingdom is to be used to justify human behavior, there also exists a spider in South America, whose female is much larger than the male. When mating is complete, the female eats her mate.

2. During the 80’s it was claimed that a gland in the base of the brain which is small in women and large in men was found to be small among homosexuals. However, this evidence, while seeming incontrovertible to the layman, was immediately refuted by scientists. The data was taken from cross-sections of the brains of dead adult humans whose sexual preference was identified prior to death. Consequently, the reduced size among homosexuals could have been a result of the practice and not its cause. That is, they could have been born with normal sized glands which then became small due to their deviant lifestyle.

3. Recently genetics has become the most commonly used foundation for the pro-gay argument. In 1993 Dr. Dean Hamer, a researcher at the National Cancer Institute, claimed to have discovered “the first concrete evidence that ‘gay genes’ really do exist.” Homosexual orientation was supposedly transmitted to males on the X chromosome from the mother. Hamer’s findings, published in the prestigious journal Science, transformed his colorless career as a government scientist into a dynamic media personality and penned his memoirs. He gave expert testimony to the Colorado Supreme Court that formed the basis of the victorious decision striking down anti-gay Proposition 2. However, a replication of his study at the University of Western Ontario failed to find any linkage whatsoever between the X chromosome and sexual orientation. It was also found that Hamer’s study lacked a control group; a fundamental principle of scientific research. Furthermore, in June 1994, the Chicago Tribune reported that a junior researcher in Hamer’s laboratory who assisted in the gene mapping in the homosexuality study, alleged that he selectively reported his data. She was then summarily dismissed from her post-doctoral fellowship in Hamer’s lab. But a National Institutes of Health investigation substantiated her claims and gave her another position in a different lab. Though Dr. Hamer was coy about his own sexuality in his memoirs, he later admitted in his lectures that the was gay.

4. It should be noted that Islam, in its final form, did not introduce anti-gay legislature to the world. The texts of the Torah are replete with clear condemnation of such practices.

5. The consequence of AIDS is enough to prove that homosexuality is evil and dangerous to society. The early spread of AIDS was concentrated among the homosexual community. It later spread to the heterosexual community through blood transfusions and intravenous drug usage and so-called bisexuals. And continues on a rampage among promiscuous heterosexuals.

6. Islam considers homosexuality to be the result of a choice. It is inconceivable that God made people homosexuals then declared it a crime and prescribed punishments for it in both this life and the next. To accept such a proposition is to accept that God is unjust. Inclinations can exist within humans for a variety of natural and unnatural acts, from fornication to rape and from necrophilia to bestiality. These inclinations may come from jinn-suggestions, media influence, or even from human whisperings or direct contact. Human beings are not like robots who only do what they are programmed to do. Humans choose and God holds them responsible for their choices. Were homosexuality a product of genetic destiny, it would be unfair for God to criminalize it and punish those who practice it. Currently, some scientists are even claiming that murder is of genetic origin. To accept that would mean to excuse murderers and tolerate murder.

7. Islam instructs parents to separate their children in their beds by the age of ten in order to avoid sexual experiences which may result from childhood experimentation. Such experiences may be reinforced by contacts in schools and through abuse from adults. Also the distinctions between male and female are strongly made in Islamic teachings. The Prophet cursed men who imitated women and women who imitated men. The Western fashion industry is controlled by homosexuals who attempt to blur the distinction between males and females in order to make their behavior more acceptable. Consequently, men’s fashion has become more feminine in style and color and women are now wearing three-piece suits, ties and hats and traditionally men’s shoes. These distinctions may be relative and vary from society to society. For example, in Scotland men traditionally wear little knee-length dresses called “kilts”. In Scotland it would not be considered imitation of females, but in a society where only women wear such dress it would be considered imitation

The Islamic Ruling Concerning Homosexuality

AlJumuah Magazine, Sha`ban 1416

 

Islam considers homosexuality to be a sexual deviation leading to a perverted act which goes against the natural order Allah intended for mankind. It is a corruption of the man’s sexuality and a crime against the opposite sex. Therefore, the Islamic shari’ah strictly prohibits the practice of this perverted act. This is mentioned in many places in the holy Qur’an.

The story of the people of the prophet Lut who were addicted to this practice, is the best example. Prophet Lut, alayhessalam said to his people: “Verily, you do sodomy with men, and rob the wayfarer! And practice all wickedness in your meetings,” (Al-A-nkabut, 29:29). And he said to them: “Of all the creatures ofthe world, will you approach males, and leave those whom Allah has created for you to be your wives? Nay, you are a trespassing people!” (Al-Shu’ara’, 26:165-166) But their answer to Prophet Lut, alayhessalam, was: “Bring us the Wrath of Allah if you are telling us the Truth.” (Al-Ankabut, 29:29). And so Allah gave them the punishment they deserved: “And We rained on them a rain of torment. And how evil was the rain of those who had been warned,” (Al-Shu’ara’, 26:173).

Just as a person who has a sexual urge should not satsfy it by committing zina, a person who has this perverted thought should not act upon it. In order to maintain the purity of the Muslim society, most Muslim scholars have ruled that the punishment for this act should be the same as for zina (i.e. one hundred whiplashes for the man who has never married, and death by stoning for the married man). Some have even ruled that it should be death for both partners, because the Prophet, sallallahu alayhe wa sallam, said: “Kill the doer and the one to whom it was done.” (Related by Al-Bayhaqi).

What Does Islam Say About Homosexuality?

Taken from the book titled ‘Common Questions People Ask About Islam’ by Shabir Ally

 

Islam teaches that homosexual acts are sinful and punishable by God. This teaching comes not from human beings, but from the Creator of all humans. God tells us in His own words how He punished the people of Lot for their homosexual behaviour.

The story of prophet Lot, on whom be peace, finds mention in several Qur’anic passages, especially Chapter 26:160-175 which reads:

“The people of Lut rejected the apostles. Behold, their brother Lut said to them: “Will ye not fear (God)? “I am to you an apostle worthy of all trust. “So fear God and obey me. “No reward do I ask of you for it: my reward is only from the lord of the Worlds. “Of all the creatures in the world, will ye approach males, “And leave those whom God has created for you to be your mates? Nay, ye are a people transgressing (all limits)!” They said: “If thou desist not, O Lut! thou wilt assuredly be cast out!” He said: “I do detest your doings.” “O my Lord! deliver me and my family from such things as they do!” So We delivered him and his family,- all Except an old woman who lingered behind. But the rest We destroyed utterly. We rained down on them a shower (of brimstone): and evil was the shower on those who were admonished (but heeded not)! Verily in this is a Sign: but most of them do not believe. And verily thy Lord is He, the Exalted in Might Most Merciful.”

From these passages we learn that God saved Lot and the righteous ones of his family, and rained on the rest a shower of brimstone, so they were utterly destroyed. This is mentioned in the Qur’an not only for the sake of information, but mainly to serve as a warning to anyone who dares to repeat such acts.

Muslim believe that every human action leads to consequences. Good actions entail good results, and evil actions entail evil consequences. Some of these consequences may not become known for many years after a certain action. The consequences of some actions will become manifest only after death when one enters a new, everlasting life…. A common mistake among humans is that if they don’t see any negative consequences for their actions they consider it harmless. Human experience has taught us that a source of superior knowledge can be of tremendous benefit to humans…. God, the source of all knowledge, warns us of His punishment if people perpetrate homosexual acts. Let us pay attention and learn the easy way.

Some will say that a person may be born with homosexual tendencies. We say that everyone is a free agent. God lays before us two paths and has given us knowledge of where these paths lead. One is the path to which the devil call us. We must avoid that. One is the path leading to paradise. We must stick to that one. Everyone experiences evil prompting from time to time. We must resist those with all our might. If one feels a tendency to do something that God prohibits, he or she should seek help from a community of loving, caring, believers who would understand his or her difficulty and help him or her overcome it.

A common ploy of the devil is to convince people that they cannot avoid sin. Then they do not even try. But God promises that the devil can have no lasting power over those who sincerely seek God (see Qur’an 15:42)

Finally, our bodies are given to us in trust from God. One should not use his or her body contrary to the user guide provided by its Maker. Consenting adults also need God’s consent.

Should Prostitution be Decriminalized?

By: Dr. Shaykh Syed Mutawalli Ad-Darsh

 

Basic Principles:

1. Criminalising (making something illegal) or decriminalising (making it legal, or at least tolerated) is the prerogative of Allah;

2. When the text of the Qur’an or the Sunnah are authentic in their authority and clear in their meaning then no one has the authority to rule over them;

3. The legality or illegality of a practice should follow the Qur’anic maxim: “To make lawful to them what is good and forbid them whet is evil” (7:157).

4. The honour, integrity and chastity of the male and the female is one of the five universal principles protected by all revealed religions.

The moral atmosphere in many societies which are increasingly secular in outlook, and where legislation reflects the norms and customs of the culture and practice, has become ‘liberal’ and individuals have the ‘freedom’ to indulge in acts which give them personal satisfaction, as long as they do not infringe upon the rights of others. Such a moral atmosphere may justify the decriminalisation of prostitution. Prostitution, it is argued, is not worse than homosexual practices which are accepted, legalised and tolerated in societies nowadays. For a man or a woman prostitute, the difference between their action and that of lesbians and homosexuals is the degradation of the human body by charging a price for hiring it. Those who argue in favour of decriminalisation say that this is an activity deemed to entertain the paying partner, as a dancer or an actor entertains those who watch them act. After all, legislation nowadays is responding to the notion of personal freedom and the absence of coercion in the profession of prostitutes. This type of argument is gaining ground in modem ‘tolerant’ society. The Synod Committee on social matters showed in a recent report that it was in favour of considering sexual relations outside marriage as no longer sinful, and this goes a long way towards helping the second act, prostitution, win its argument for decriminalisation.

For Muslims the question of legality is entirely outside the scope of human power. It is purely the prerogative of Allah, our Creator. To assign this area to a human being is to give that person, institution or organisation the right to be worshipped. When the Qur’anic verse, “They have made their rabbis and their monks, and the Messiah, the son of Mary, as lords besides Allah”, ( 9:31) was recited in the presence of Adiyy b. Hatim, a convert from Christianity, he said: “O Messenger of Allah, they did not worship them”. The Messenger said to him: “Did they not prohibit for them what was legal? Did they not allow them what was prohibited?” To this Adiyy said: “Yes”. The Prophet then said: “This amounted to worshipping them”. The Qur’an has made clear it that no-one has an authority except Allah. In the Qur’an Allah says:

“Do not (falsely) declare: “That is lawful and that is forbidden, in order to invent falsehood about Allah. These who invent falsehoods about Allah shall never prosper” (16:116).

Turning to the Qur’anic attitude towards prostitution we find that, as with many social practices that it aimed at reforming, it moved in a gradual way. Prostitution was widely practised in a number of forms and it was tolerated and accepted as one of the social practices. It was condemned in a number of early Makkah Qur’anic verses as an immoral practice which was prohibited by Allah, but there was no specific punishment for it.

In the Qur’an we read: “And these who do not invoke another god, and do not slay the living soul, which Allah has forbidden, except by right, nor commit adultery – and any that does this (not only) meets punishment (but) the Penalty on the Day of Judgement will be doubled to him, and he will dwell there in ignominy…” (25: 68). On this occasion the Qur’an was portraying a decent picture of the morality of the servants of the Compassionate and giving the severest warning to those who behave otherwise, but the punishment mentioned was in the Afterlife.

The same attitude is seen again in “Do not approach adultery for it is an indecent thing and an evil way” (17:32). It can be noticed here that the command to keep away from coming near to adultery is explained rationally – that it is an act of degradation, lewdness and a dangerous trend in human society. But even with this rationalisation of the prohibition there was still no punishment.

But once the Muslim community was established and the authority of the Messenger of Allah was confirmed and was free from subjugation to any other social order, the rules and regulations dealing with this deviation in human behaviour were revealed to the Prophet to put into practice. An early sign of these new regulations came in Ch 4, verses 15-16 where it was prescribed that women who commit adultery were to be imprisoned indefinitely until their death or until a new regulation came. Verses 16 prescribed some sort of punishment for men who were guilty of homosexual acts until they were deterred from this heinous crime. Soon afterwards the final regulatory and prescribed punishments were revealed in Chapter 24, The Light. The first verses of this chapter set out the regulations specifying the punishment, the establishment of the crime, the different categories of those who commit it (virgin or married), the prohibition of marrying those who are known to indulge in this act, and finally the prohibition and punishment of those who falsely accuse someone of committing this crime. The statements of the Prophet came to expand and detail all the rules and regulations on this matter. As a result, any physical relationship outside marriage was criminalised and punishable. A whole core of legal regulatory ordinances became part of the penal Islamic legal system. It is now firmly established that this act is permanently penalised, criminalised and punishable physically as well as socially, and no-one except a non-believer, would argue about its nature.

There are many safeguards and mitigating circumstances to protect the innocent and to stop speculative talk about the integrity and good nature of those who may be involved. But these are legal protective and preventative measures for cases where the crime was not established, and do not in any way infringe upon the validity or the applicability of the rules, and definitely not their stoppage or abrogation.

The Nature Of Regulations

The Islamic rules and regulations are not arbitrarily imposed upon human society, They follow a rationale given in the Qur’an itself and reflects the spirit of care, compassion and reasoning. This is clearly stated in the Qur’an, giving the general framework of the Islamic legal system. In Ch.7, verse 157, Allah Most High defined the mission of the Prophet in terms of these moral and rational concepts “….he enjoins on them what is good and forbids them what is evil, and he makes the pure things lawful for them and forbids them from the impure, he relieves them from their burdens and frees them from the fetters which were upon them. So those who believe in him and support him and help him (in his task), and follow the Light which has been revealed to him, those surely attain success. ” So Muslims believe that this is the aim of the Islamic way of life in general and of the rules and regulations in particular. Any particular legal issue has to be judged in the light of this general moral framework.

The Aim Of This Particular Piece Of Legislation

Beside the general moral framework of the Islamic legislation, in every particular issue there are certain objectives to be attained. The family in Islam is the bedrock of the social order. It has to be built on a solid foundation which would allow it to survive the challenges, the tensions and the strains of a life-long relationship.

It has, at the same time, to cater for and protect those who are involved in it – wife, husband, children and all those who have a stake in its stability and continuity. There are basic legal obligations between all these members, those who are covered by the term ‘extended family’. The honour of those who are involved is a very important concept as far as the good name of relations is concerned, as far as the responsibility, both morally and financially, for the upbringing of the children is concerned and as far as those who are entitled to carry the name of the family and inherit its fortune are concerned. All these rights stem from a clearly established relationship. The safety and tranquillity of those who live in the same area, and the eradication of the sources of tension and conflict are also important. All these are legitimate objectives which have to protected and realised.

The Question, Finally, Is Whether There Is Any Need, Within The Islamic Social Regulation, For Prostitution?

The answer to this question is to be sought in the regulations dealing with the sexual relationship. In Islam, sex is considered to be one of the most enjoyable aspects of life. In the words of this life, “Life is sheer enjoyment. The best of its enjoyment is a decent good wife.” In a Hadith the Prophet (s.A.w.) said: “The faithful has not acquired a greater thing in this life after his faith in God, than a decent, good wife. If he looks at her he will be pleased, if he asks of her something she will oblige and if he is away she will keep chaste and look after his wealth.”

He advised young people who were physically and financially able to marry to get married, for this is the best way to preserve young people’s chastity and integrity. Allah Most High commanded the guardians of those who are in need of marriage to help them to accomplish it.

The Qur’an went on to give that good promise: “And marry those among you who are single and the virtuous ones among your servants, male or female, and if they are poor, God will provide for them out of his bounty,” (24: 32.)

Al-Islam did not put a strain nor impose restrictions on those who wish to get married, male or female. Once married, the financial responsibilities fall upon the shoulders of the man. Both are to live within their own means. If their earnings are not enough the state should take care of them. If there is no such social system, local communities should share among themselves the means to enable families to survive in an honourable, but humble way.

There is no reason for men or women to claim that they have to resort to this illegal immoral practice out of financial or physical need. Marriage is an easy, simple, natural way of satisfying the basic human need. Only when people become greedy, materialistic and unprincipled do they resort to this heinous practice, which spreads diseases and illegitimacy and brings into this world children who suffer the consequences of the mistakes of others.

Allah Most High says in the Qur’an: “Indeed those who love that obscenity should be spread among the believers, shall have a painful chastisement in this life and in the Hereafter, and Allah knows but you do not know,” (24:19).

And Allah says the Truth and guides to the right way.


Shaykh Syed Mutawalli Ad-Darsh. 9 August 1996.

 

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Posted by islamicwedding on October 7, 2008

Relationship Between Husband and Wife in Islam

Pearls of Wisdom

A Mother’s Advice to Her Daughter

From Jamharah Khutah al-‘Arab, 1/145

Zawaj.com Editor’s Note: The speech that forms the main content of this article is over 1400 years old, from the pre-Islamic period. The advice in the article is certainly out of date and one-sided, but there is much wisdom here if you look it as mutual advice for how the husband and wife should treat each other. So both partners should serve one another, please one another, protect one another, etc.

Abd al-Malik (Radiyallaahu ‘anhaa) said: “When ‘Awf ibn Muhallim al-Shaybani, one of the most highly respected leaders of the Arab nobility during the jahiliyyah, married his daughter Umm Iyas to al-Harith ibn ‘Amr al-Kindi, as she was made ready to be taken to the groom, her mother, Umamah came into her room to advise her and said:

  • “O my daughter, if it were deemed unnecessary to give you this advice because of good manners and noble descent, then it would have been unnecessary for you, because you posses these qualities, but it will serve as a reminder to those who are forgetful, and will help those who are wise.
  • “O my daughter, if a woman were able to do without a husband by virtue of her father’s wealth and her need for her father, then you of all people would be most able to do without a husband, but women were created for men just as men were created for them.
  • “O my daughter, you are about to leave the home in which you grew up, where you first learned to walk, to go to a place you do not know, to a companion to whom you are unfamiliar. By marrying you, he has become a master over you, so be like a servant to him, and he will become like a servant to you.
  • “Take from me ten qualities, which will be a provision and a reminder for you:
  • “The first and second of them are: be content in his company, and listen to and obey him, for contentment brings peace of mind, and listening to and obeying one’s husband pleases Allah.
  • “The third and fourth of them are: make sure that you smell good and look good; he should not see anything ugly in you, and he should not smell anything but a pleasant smell from you. Kohl is the best kind of beautification to be
    found, and water is better than the rarest perfume.
  • “The fifth and sixth of them are: prepare his food on time, and keep quiet when he is asleep, for raging hunger is like a burning flame, and disturbing his sleep will make him angry.
  • “The seventh and eight of them are: take care of his servants (or employees) and children, and take care of his wealth, for taking care of his wealth shows that you appreciate him, and taking care of his children and servants shows good management.
  • “The ninth and tenth of them are: never disclose any of his secrets, and never disobey any of his orders, for if you disclose any of his secrets you will never feel safe from his possible betrayal, and if you disobey him, his heart will be
    filled with hatred towards you.
  • “Be careful, O my daughter, of showing joy in front of him when he is upset, and do not show sorrow in front of him when he is happy, because the former shows a lack of judgment whilst the latter will make him unhappy.

 

Reviving Our Sense of Gheerah

By Fatima Barakatullah

We live in societies in which most men and women have lost their sense of modesty, women are obsessed with their appearances and wear clothes to be seen by others and to attract the attention of other men even if they are married! They have lost their sense of shame. Marriage is often looked upon as old-fashioned and short term affairs and frivolous relationships are the norm, everyone waiting to attract a better partner and feeling totally justified to dump one partner for another at the drop of a hat. Feminism too has reached its peak and men and women are told to suppress their natural emotions. Men are not even embarrassed when their wives are dressed up and attract the attention of other men, they don’t mind if another man sees, chats, laughs and even dances with their womenfolk and if they do mind, they are told not to be so possessive!

In Islam we have a concept of Gheerah. Gheerah is an Arabic word which means protectiveness or jealousy. It is a good type of jealousy, like when a man feels jealous or protective over his wife or sisters and other-womenfolk and doesn’t like other men to look at them. It is a natural inbuilt feeling Allah has given men and women. The Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) had the most Gheerah for his wives and all of the companions were known for their Gheerah.

All Muslim men should have a collective sense of protectiveness for Muslim women as Allah says in the Qur’an, the meaning of which is: “The Men are the protectors and maintainers of women…” (Surah An-Nisaa, Ayah 34).

Men who do not care about how their women behave and appear in front of other men and don’t enforce hijaab upon their wives or women-folk are called Dayyooth. Being a Dayyooth is a major sin and a detailed discription of this evil characteristic can be found in adh-Dhahabee’s book of Major Sins (Kitaab ul-Kabaa’ir).

A Story of Gheerah

To further understand the quality of Gheerah, we can look at an incident that Asmaa’ radiallahu ‘anhaa) the daughter of Abu Bakr As-Siddeeq (radiallahu ‘anhu) and sister of Aisha (radiallaahu ‘anhaa), relates about herself. Abu Bakr was a wealthy merchant and he married his daughter Asmaa’ to the great companion Az-Zubayr ibn al-‘Awwam (radiallahu ‘anhu) who was a very poor man but a man of great piety and one of the companions who were promised Paradise.

Asmaa’ relates: “When az-Zubayr married me, he had neither land nor wealth nor slave…”, so Asmaa’ had to work very hard kneading dough, going far off to get water. “And I used to carry on my head,” she continues, “the date stones from the land of az-Zubair which Allah’s Messenger (sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) had endowed him and it was a distance of two miles from Madeenah. One day, as I was carrying the date-stones upon my head, I happened to meet Allah’s Messenger (sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam), along with a group of his Companions. He called me and told the camel to sit down so that he could make me ride behind him. I felt shy to go with men and I remembered az-Zubair and his Gheerah and he was a man having the most Gheerah. The Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) understood my shyness and left. I came to az-Zubair and said: “The Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) met me as I was carrying date-stones upon my head and there was with him a group of his Companions. He told the camel to kneel so that I could mount it, but I felt shy and I remembered your Gheerah.” So Asmaa’ declined the offer made by the Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam). Upon this az-Zubair said: “By Allah, the thought of you carrying date-stones upon your head is more severe a burden on me than you riding with him.” (related in Saheeh Al-Bukhari)

Look at the sense of dignity and modesty of Asmaa’! See how she felt shy in front of men? See how careful she was about her husband’s feelings? She knew that her husband had a lot of Gheerah so she didn’t want to upset him by accepting the Prophet’s (sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) help even though the Prophet was the purest of men and even though it meant bringing hardship on herself! And look at Az-Zubair (radiallahu ‘anhu), even though he had a lot of Gheerah, he didn’t want to inconvenience his wife. What a beautiful relationship they had!

Nurturing Our Sense of Gheerah

Sometimes Muslim women don’t understand if their menfolk want them to cover their faces or if they ask them to change something about the way they dress or speak in public, thinking that the men are being over-protective. But my dear sisters! If your husband asks you not to wear a certain colour of khimaar because it brings out the beauty of your eyes, or if he wants you to cover your face – by Allah, be thankful! Be proud of the fact that your husband has a sense of Gheerah for you and that he values you and cares for your hereafter. He knows what men can be like more than you do and so never try and suppress his Gheerah in these types of matters. And his concern for you should incite your own sense of honor! Why should any man be able to see your beauty and think indecent thoughts about you? We must nurture our own and our menfolk’s sense of Gheerah by behaving and dressing modestly ourselves and paying attention to their valid opinions. We expect certain behavior from them and they expect it of us. And besides, if our husband asks us to do something that it not haraam, we must do it.

And Brothers! How can you allow your wife or sister to walk around attracting the attentions and evil-thoughts of other men? How can you not mind if she smiles as she talks to other men. Nobody has the right to enjoy her and her company but you and her Maharim men. You are not being overbearing if you first encourage and then enforce the hijaab on your womenfolk because YOU will be asked about it on the Day of Judgement and it is also a major sin upon YOU! It is upon the men to enforce these things in their homes and you cannot use the excuse that your wife didn’t want to. Women need a firm, balanced, guiding hand from their men, so with wisdom you must enforce hijaab in your home. You are a shepherd and are responsible for your flock! Allah reminds us all in the Qur’an, the meaning of which is: “Oh you who believe, Protect yourselves and your families from a fire whose fuel is men and stones.” (At-Tahreem, Aayah 6)

There is a big difference between how Islam values and protects women and how cheaply women are treated outside of Islam! As Muslims we have to be careful that our Hayaa’ (sense of modesty and shame) and Gheerah don’t wear out in a society in which people have lost it.

The First Two Years:

A Marriage Survival Guide

Source: Soundvision, http://www.soundvision.com/Info/marriage/survivalguide.asp
More Muslim marriages in North America are breaking up in their first year than ever before, according to Shahina Siddiqui, executive director of the Islamic Social Services Association of the United States and Canada (ISSA).

The first five to seven years are the most challenging of any marriage. They are a time a couple spends getting to know each other better and adjusting to each other’s habits and personalities.

Below are some of the main problems couples face in the early years and some possible solutions.

1. Lack of proper information before marriage

A number of problems are caused simply by the fact that the couple and their families have not discussed crucial issues beforehand. Some of these include:

  • whether or not the wife will work outside the home
  • will the couple wait to have children
  • which city and country the couple will live in after marriage
  • will they live with his parents or have their own apartment

These and other relevant issues need to be discussed and decided in the beginning stages of the marriage process.

2. Who’s in charge?

One of the biggest problems is the tug-of-war between couples over who is in control in the relationship. This has led to a stalemate in disagreements, as well as bitter feelings.

Many couples today are refusing to compromise within moderation when differences arise.

While from an Islamic perspective, the husband is given the leadership role in the marriage relationship, this does not mean he runs the couple’s family life like a dictatorship.

It must be remembered that Islamically, a leader is one who serves, manages, provides and nourishes. A leader must also have humbleness and humility.

A husband exercises the right kind of leadership by being listening to and consulting (doing Shura) with his wife.

Also, a husband is bound to follow the rules of the Quran and Sunnah. So differences in opinion should be referred back to these sources, instead of becoming a source of tension and problems.

3. The divorce option

Once upon a time, “divorce” was the seven-letter word most Muslim couples avoided using. Today, amongst many Muslim couples in North America, it is one of the first recourses turned to when conflicts occur in marriage.

It should be remembered that out of all of the things Allah has made Halal, divorce is the one He hates the most. Couples need to look at several other alternatives before turning to this drastic measure.

They should seek the help of older, wiser and trustworthy elders who will try to help them resolve their differences. Generally, they need to make a sincere, concerted effort to try to work things out before divorce is seriously considered.

4. Sexual problems

It is unrealistic to expect the issue of sex and sex-related problems to mysteriously disappear once a couple gets married.

In the sex-saturated culture of North America, couples tend to place very high expectations of each other in this area. They also expect instant results.

In reality, it takes time, commitment, disappointment and investment to establish a sexual relationship in marriage which is in tune with the needs of each partner.

It’s important for Muslim couples to walk into marriage with proper information about sex and sexual etiquette from an Islamic perspective. They need to know what is Halal (permissible) and what is Haram (forbidden). They should also keep in mind that spouses must never discuss their sexual relationship with others, unless it is to get help for a specific problem with the right person or authority figure.

On a similar note, it’s important for both the husband and wife to remember that they need to make themselves physically attractive to each other. Too many couples take marriage to mean an excuse to now let themselves go. The couple or one of the partners may gain too much weight, or may not care about hygiene and their looks in general. The reverse should be true: spouses should take the time out for these things and give them even more attention after marriage. Our beloved Prophet has recommended husband and wife both to do that, May Allah’s peace and blessings be upon him.

5. In-laws

The first few years of marriage are not just a period of adjustment for the married couple. It’s one of getting used to in-laws and vice-versa.

Husbands, wives and in-laws need to practice the Islamic rules of social relations with each other. These include: avoiding sarcasm, backbiting, calling each other by offensive nicknames, and making a special effort to respect each other as family members.

As well, comparisons need to be avoided, since every individual and every couple is different. So wives should not be compared to mothers and sisters. Husbands should not be compared to fathers and brothers. In-laws should not be compared to parents, etc.

In addition, there should be regular, healthy contact between spouses and in-laws. This can mean visiting each other at least once or twice a month, or calling if distance makes it difficult to get together.

6. Realism

Boy meets girl. They fall in love. They live happily ever after.

This is the plot of many a Hollywood and Bollywood movie, where everyone is “perfect”. Real life is very different.

Couples may enter marriage with high-flying romantic ideas and expecting their partner to be the ideal human. But all humans have good and bad points. Husbands and wives have to learn to accept each other, warts and all.

6. Making a schedule and establishing rituals

Making a schedule may seem like an end to spontaneity but it’s not.

This allows you to establish your own lifestyle and rituals as a couple. It’s especially important if both the husband and wife are going to school and/or working. In this scenario, a schedule helps in setting time aside for each other during a fast-paced week of work and studies.

Some rituals couples can establish may include:

  • praying at least one prayer together
  • attending a study circle together once a week
  • deciding on a weekly menu
  • having a pancake breakfast every Saturday morning
  • setting aside one day on which no work or studying will be done
  • setting a day when both the husband and wife will clean up the house
  • setting a time to discuss finances and a budget
  • making a phone contacting during the day
  • deciding on a particular day and time once a month at least to visit each other’s parents

By discussing and setting up these rituals, couples learn how to talk to and feel responsible for each other. They also learn to become a team instead of two people living in the same with separate lives.

7. Marriage as a restriction

Muslim men who have grown up in North America may find marriage restricting. After all, before, they could hang out with their buddies and get home by 11:00 p.m. and no one would say a word. After marriage though, they have to be home by 7:00 p.m if not earlier.

While marriage comes with responsibilities and a tighter schedule, the benefits are also there. It takes time and patience to realize that in the end the benefits (i.e. a life partner, kids, etc.) are greater than the restrictions.

8. Friends and Islamic activities

Friends are a joy and a good friend is someone you want to be close to for the rest of your life.

But friends are often the source of many marriage conflicts. Too much time spent with friends, either hanging out or on the phone, means time lost with a husband/wife.

Also, friends, especially if they are of the same age group, may give the wrong advice on marriage, due to their own inexperience in the area.

Some possible solutions to the friends dilemma could be:

·  working out a “friends time” at least once a week where the husband and the wife meet and/or talk with friends privately

·  developing friendships with other married couples so spouses can befriend spouses

Islamic activities fall in a similar category. Young Muslim activists may think they can keep attending those three-hour Muslim Students’ Association meetings as they did before marriage. Not so.

Too much focus on outside Islamic activities takes away from spouse time. Give Islamic activities their due but within a balance of everyone’s rights, including those of your spouse.

9. Not keeping secrets

A number of young married couples are notorious for not keeping secrets, especially related to sexual matters, and exposing their spouse’s faults. This is not only unacceptable. It’s unIslamic.

Couples should seek to hide each other’s faults. They should seek advice on marriage problems from a “marriage mentor”, someone who is older, wiser, trustworthy and has the best interests of both parties at heart.

10. Finances

How much should be spent on furniture, the house, food, etc. These are staple issues of any household and can lead to a tug-of-war between husband and wife.

To keep spending in check, husbands and wives need to draft a budget then stick to it. The household will run more efficiently and that’s one less source of conflict in the marriage.

A special note to husbands: in the beginning of marriage, husbands tend to shower their wives with gifts. They do this as an expression of love and because they want to provide for their wives. However, as time passes and they keep giving, they go into debt or experience financial difficulty. As well, wives get used to a certain level of comfort which husbands can no longer afford.

Providing for a wife (and later on, a family) is not just reserved to material things. It includes spending time with her, and treating her with equity and kindness. In fact, most wives would prefer this kind of provision over expensive gifts.

11. Give each other space

A number of couples think being married means always being together and serving each other hand and foot.

Wives may initially take over all household chores, not letting the husband help or even do his own things (i.e. ironing his own clothes). They later regret this as household responsibilities increase and their husbands become dependent on them for the smallest things.

Husbands may think getting married means being with their wives all the time. This later may lead them to becoming irritable and cranky.

The key is to focus on being caring, fond of and accepting each other and giving each other sufficient space. Doing this provides a necessary balance in a relationship which is so close physically and emotionally

What is a Husband?

Guidelines for the Husband in Interacting with his Wife

Author: Dr. Marwwan Al-Qaisee
Source: Al-Asaalah Magazine
Translator: isma’eel alarcon

The family is that brick which forms the foundation of a society. It is composed of individuals that have permanent relations established between them. Most importantly, it possesses almost a majority of the different kinds of personal relations. Because of this, there must be certain etiquettes placed in order to control and regulate these relations. This is such that it can be maintained in the best possible manner, and so that it can generate and produce its proper fruits. Family relations consist of the relationship between the spouses from one perspective, the relationship between the parents and the children from a second perspective, and the relationship between the children themselves from a third perspective.

Etiquettes of the husband:

It is not from the deficiencies, but rather from good manners, that the husband shares in the responsibility of specified matters, such as the mending of garments or what is similar to that.

It is appropriate for a man to not restrict himself from serving himself. This is since the wife takes care of the household affairs. So therefore, it is from good manners that the husband extend a helping hand to his wife in the house, during times of necessity, such as when she is sick, pregnant, has given birth or similar to that.

The exemplary husband is he who cooperates with his wife by bearing good relations and showing kind manners (to her), according to the full extent of the meaning contained in these (last) two expressions. Truly, the husbands who are best at working alongside their wives are the best of mankind in the view of Islaam. This good way of living between the spouses must be deeply imbedded into the daily marital life, even at the time of divorce.

Beware of characterizing the relationship between the spouses with over-seriousness! For indeed characterizing the family life with a militaristic nature amounts to one of the causes for failure and bad results.

From the kind and noble manners of the husband is that he complies and assents to the requests of his wife, so long as they are not forbidden in the Religion. And being luxurious in food, drink and clothing is at the entrance of matters forbidden in the Religion.

The husband should specify a time in which he can play around and pass free time with his wife.

The relationship between the spouses must contain one singular and specific nature. And it cannot be this way unless the couple begins demolishing all the obstacles and impediments that stand between them. For example, the husband should not feel timid and restrain himself from drinking out of the same cup that his wife drinks out of.

There is no human being that is perfect. So there is no doubt that the husband will see things in his wife that does not comply with his natural disposition and preferences. If these aspects are not in opposition to the fundaments of the Religion or to the obedience of the husband and his rights, then at that point, he should not try to change her personality so that it complies with his natural preference.

And he must always remember that for each member of the couple, there will be an aspect of ones personality that conflicts with the others personality. And he should also remember that if there are some characteristics that he doesn’t find pleasing in his wife, then indeed she has other characteristics, which will definitely be pleasing to him.

Do not let Ramadaan be a barrier that impedes you from showing affection to your wife, such as by kissing her. But this is so long as you are able to refrain yourself, since what is forbidden during the days of Ramadaan is only sexual intercourse.

Do not chase after the errors of your wife and recount them to her, for too much blaming and reprimanding will worsen the relationship between the two of you, and it will pose a threat to your marital life. So overlook your wife’s easy ability to make mistakes, and make her falling into them seem like something small.

If you are able, do not hold back from providing your wife with good clothing and food, and from being generous in spending money on her. This is of course according to the extent of your ability.

Do not give little importance to implementing the punishment required for any acts in opposition to the Religion, which your wife has committed, whether it is in the home or outside it. This should be the main reason that causes you to become angry, thus no other reason should affect you (besides this one).

What has been stated previously does not mean that you should leave matters alone until that result comes to happen. Thus, whenever you realize that a matter is left alone, weigh it with seriousness and determination, without being too harsh or rude about it.

The woman is the head of the household, the one responsible for it. So do not attempt to meddle into affairs that do not fall into your area of duties and responsibilities, such as the food and the order of the house.

Beware of scolding your wife or blaming her for a mistake she committed, in the presence of others, even if they are your own children. For indeed that is an act that goes against correct behavior and it will lead to raising anger in the hearts of people.

If you are forced to place punishment upon your wife, then let it be by staying away from her at bedtime. And do not boycott her except that it is done within the household. And avoid using foul language, insulting her, beating her and describing her with repulsive names. For these matters do not befit an exemplary husband.

Having jealousy and caring about the modesty of your wife is a praiseworthy thing, which shows your love for her. However it is on the condition that you do not go to great extremes in this jealousy. For then at that point, it would turn into something worthy of no praise.

When entering the house, do not alarm your family by entering upon them suddenly. Rather, enter while they are aware of it, and greet them with Salaam. And ask about them and how they are doing. And do not forget to remember Allaah, the Mighty and Sublime, when you enter the house.

Beware of spreading any secrets connected with the intimate encounters you have with your wife, for that is something restricted and forbidden.

Constantly maintain the cleaning of your mouth and the freshening of your breath.

Guardianship of your wife doesn’t mean that you can exploit what Allaah has bestowed upon you from taking charge of her, such that you harm and oppress her.

Showing respect and kindness to your wife’s family is showing respect and kindness to her. And this applies even after her death, on the condition that it is not accompanied by an act forbidden in the Religion, such as intermingling of the sexes or being in privacy (with them).

Too much joking will lead to (your family having) little fear (of disobeying you) and a lack of respect for you. So do not joke too much with your wife.

Be considerate that fulfilling the conditions which you promised to your wife during the pre-marriage agreement is a matter possessing the highest of importance and priority. So do not neglect that after getting married.

When you lecture your wife or reprimand her or simply speak to her, choose the kindest and nicest of words and expressions for your speech. And do not reprimand her in front of others or in front of your children.

It is not proper for you to ask your wife to look for work outside of the house or to spend upon you from her wealth.

Do not overburden your wife with acts that she is not able to handle. Consider, with extreme regard, the environment she was raised up in. Rural service is not like urban service, and the service of a strong woman and her preparation for it is not like the service of a weak woman.

There is nothing in the obligation of a woman’s service to her husband that negates his assisting her in that regard, if he should find the free time. Rather, this is from the good manners of living between the spouses. This discussion will continue in an upcoming issue, if Allaah wills.

A Wife

This article has been widely atributed to a lecture given by Sheikh Abdullah Adhami, but I have been informed that he is not the actual author, so for now it is, Author Unknown.

 

By getting married you are not just getting a wife, you are getting your whole world. From now until the rest of your days your wife will be your partner, your companion, and your best friend.

She will share your moments, your days, and your years. She will share your joys and sorrows, your successes and failures, your dreams and your fears. When you are ill, she will take the best care of you; when you need help, she will do all she can for you; when you have a secret, she will keep it; when you need advice, she will give you the best advice. She will always be with you: when you wake up in the morning the first thing your eyes will see will be hers; during the day, she will be with you, if for some time she is not with you by her physical body, she will be thinking of you, praying for you with all her heart, mind, and soul; when you go to sleep at night, the last thing your eyes will see will be her; and when you are asleep you will still see her in your dreams. In short, she will be your whole world and you will be her whole world.

The best description that I personally have ever read describing the closeness of the spouses to each other is the Qur’anic verse which says: “They are your garments and you are their garments.” (Surah Al Baqarah 2:187). Indeed, spouses are like garments to each other because they provide one another with the protection, the comfort, the cover, the support, and the adornment that garments provide to humans. Just imagine a journey in the winter of Alaska without garments! Our spouses provide us with the same level of comfort, protection, cover, and support in the journey of our lives on this earth as garments would do in the Alaskan journey.

The relationship between the spouses is the most amazing of all human relations: the amount of love and affection, intimacy and closeness, mercy and compassion, peace and tranquillity that fills the hearts of the spouses is simply inexplicable. The only rational explanation for these most amazing of all human feelings is that: it is an act of Allah Subhanahu wa Ta’ala, “And Allah has made for you Mates (and Companions of your own nature …” (Surah Al Nahl 16:72)

Only our Almighty Allah Subhanahu wa Ta’ala in His Infinite Power, Boundless Mercy, and Great Wisdom can create and ingrain these amazing and blessed feelings in the hearts of the spouses. In fact Allah Subhanahu wa Ta’ala is reminding those who search for His signs in the universe that these feelings in the hearts of the spouses are among the signs that should guide humans to His existence as He says in the Qur’an, “And among His signs is this, that He created for you mates from among yourselves that you may dwell in tranquillity with them and He has put love and mercy between your hearts: verily in that are signs for those who reflect.” (Surah Al Rum 30:21)

But Allah Subhanahu wa Ta’ala knows that the human heart is not a static entity, it is sometimes weak and at times dynamic. Feelings can and do change with time. Love may wither and fade away. The marital bond might weaken if not properly cared for. Happiness in marriage cannot be taken for granted; continuous happiness requires constant giving from both sides. For the tree of marital love to remain alive and keep growing, the soil has to be sustained, maintained, watered and nurtured.

Remember that our Prophet Muhammad Salallaahu ‘aliahi wa’sallaam had found the time to go out to the desert and race with his wife Aisha. She outran him but later after she had gained some weight, he outran her. Remember that the Prophet Salallaahu ‘aliahi wa’sallaam took his wife to watch the young Ethiopians playing and dancing their folk dances. The show of emotions is necessary to keep the marital bond away from rusting and disintegrating. Remember that you will be rewarded by Allah Subhanahu wa Ta’ala for any emotions you show to your wife as the Prophet Salallaahu ‘aliahi wa’sallaam said “One would be rewarded for anything that he does seeking the pleasure of Allah even the food that he puts in the mouth of his wife”

Never underestimate the importance of seemingly little things as putting food in your wife’s mouth, opening the car door for her, etc. Remember that the Prophet Salallaahu ‘aliahi wa’sallaam used to extend his knee to his wife to assist her up to ride the camel.

Try to always find some time for both of you to pray together. Strengthening the bond between you and Allah Subhanahu wa Ta’ala is the best guarantee that your own marital bond would always remain strong. Having peace with Allah Subhanahu wa Ta’ala will always result in having more peace at home.

Remember that the Prophet Salallaahu ‘aliahi wa’sallaam gave glad tidings for those couples who wake up at night to pray together. The Prophet Salallaahu ‘aliahi wa’sallaam even urged the spouse who rises up first to wake the other spouse up, even by splashing cold water on his/her face.

Always try your best to be good to your wife by words and by deeds. Talk to her, smile to her, seek her advice, ask for her opinion, spend quality time with her and always remember that the Prophet Salallaahu ‘aliahi wa’sallaam said, “The best of you are those who are best to their wives”

Finally, it is common that spouses vow to love and honor their spouses until death do them part. I do believe that this vow is good or even great, but not enough! It is not enough that you love your wife. You have to love what she loves as well. Her family, her loved ones must also become your loved ones. Don’t be like my colleague who was unhappy about his wife’s parents coming to visit for few weeks. He candidly said to her “I don’t like your parents.” Naturally she angrily looked at him straight in the eye and said, “I don’t like yours either.” Also, it is not enough that you love her until death do you part. Love should never end and we do believe there is life after death where those who did righteousness in this world will be joined by their spouses (Surah Al Zukhruf 43:70) and offsprings.

The best example in this regard is the Prophet Salallaahu ‘aliahi wa’sallaam whose love for Khadija, his wife of 25 years, extended to include all those she loved; this love of his continued even after her death. It was many years after her death and he never forgot her and whenever a goat was slaughtered in his house he would send portions of it to Khadija’s family and friends and whenever he felt that the visitor at the door might be Khadija’s sister Hala, he would pray saying, “O Allah let it be Hala.”

10 Tips on How to Be a Successful Husband

Prepared by Muhammad AlShareef, Reprinted from Islamway.com
1. Dress up for your wife, look clean and smell good.When was the last time us men went shopping for designer pajamas? Just like the husband wants his wife to look nice for him, she also wants her husband to dress up for her too. Remember that Rasul Allah – sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam – would always start with Miswak when returning home and always loved the sweetest smells.

2. Use the cutest names for your wife. Rasul Allah – sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam – had nicknames for his wives, ones that they loved. Call your wife by the most beloved names to her, and avoid using names that hurt their feelings.

3. Don’t treat her like a fly. We never think about a fly in our daily lives until it ‘bugs’ us. Similarly, a wife will do well all day – which brings no attention from the husband – until she does something to ‘bug’ him. Don’t treat her like this; recognize all the good that she does and focus on that.

4. If you see wrong from your wife, try being silent and do not comment! This is one of the ways Rasul Allah – sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam – used when he would see something inappropriate from his wives – radi Allahu ‘anhunn. It’s a technique that few Muslim men have mastered.

5. Smile at your wife whenever you see her and embrace her often. Smiling is Sadaqah and your wife is not exempt from the Muslim Ummah. Imagine life with her constantly seeing you smiling. Remember also those Ahadith when Rasul Allah – sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam – would kiss his wife before leaving for Salah, even if he was fasting.

6. Thank her for all that she does for you. Then thank her again! Take for example a dinner at your house. She makes the food, cleans the home, and a dozen other tasks to prepare. And sometimes the only acknowledgement she receives is that there needed to be more salt in the soup. Don’t let that be; thank her!

7. Ask her to write down the last ten things you did for her that made her happy. Then go and do them again. It may be hard to recognize what gives your wife pleasure. You don’t have to play a guessing game, ask her and work on repeating those times in your life.

8. Don’t belittle her desires. Comfort her. Sometimes the men may look down upon the requests of their wives. Rasul Allah – sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam set the example for us in an incident when Safiyyah – radi Allahu ‘anha – was crying because, as she said, he had put her on a slow camel. He wiped her tears, comforted her, and brought her the camel.

9. Be humorous and Play games with your wife. Look at how Rasul Allah – sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam – would race his wife Aisha – radi Allahu ‘anha – in the desert. When was the last time we did something like that?

10. Always remember the words of Allah’s Messenger – sal Allahu alayhi wa sallam: “The best of you are those who treat their families the best. And I am the best amongst you to my family.” Try to be the best!

In conclusion: Never forget to make Dua to Allah – azza wa jall – to make your marriage successful. And Allah ta’ala knows best !!

Marriage Relations

From Marriage in Islam by Muhammad Abdul-Rauf, Ph.D

 

A Happy Conjugal Household

Mutual Rights and Obligations including Sex Etiquette

In order to ensure an atmosphere of harmony and to promote a cheerful and successful life in the newly established nest of the newlyweds, Islam has provided guidance in defining the relationship between husband and wife and in distributing the rights and obligations arising from this relationship.

In Islam the husband is the head of the household. This is not male chauvenism. It derives from the natural psychological and physical makeup of the male. Man does not suffer from a regular monthly indisposition with its attendant adverse psychological effects. He does not have to be confined by pregnancy or for delivery; nor can he feed children from his breasts. He is therefore always ready to go out and search for sustenance for himself and his dependents. In fact it was Islam which delivered woman from her plight. It established her equality with man both theoretically and practically. It restored her dignity and recovered her freedom. The Koran stresses her right to benefit from the fruits of her efforts as much as man is entitled to benefit from his (IV, 7). It severely condemned the old customs of ill-treating women (XVI, 58/59,and LXXXI 8/9), and protected their rights in one of the longest chapters, IV, which is given the title “Women.” We have already noticed that in the process of the marriage contract, the bride initiates the offer of marriage, a significant detail which emphasizes her spontaneous free action in making this most important decision.

Let us now set out to consider the obligations imposed by Islam upon the husband toward his wife , and then proceed to discuss those of the wife toward her husband.

 

The Husband’s Duties

1. A husband is responsible for the protection, happiness and maintenance of his wife. He is responsible for the cost of her food, clothes and accommodation. Although she may have to cook, he has to buy her the raw materials and cooking and kitchen facilities, as may be required and applicable. He may also have to buy her two sets of clothes or more each year, providing the types of clothing suitable for the seasons. However, the number of sets of clothes and their quality depend on the husbands means and social requirements. A wife is also entitled to a comfortable, independent accomodation, suitably furnished and provided with basiic sanitation facilities. She is not obliged to stay with the husband’s parents or relatives as he is not obliged to live with hers. She is also entitled to enjoy herslef with her husband in a relaxed atmophere, free from the embarrassment caused by the presence of another adult in the household The cost of smoking or of a forbidden fruit or drink is not to be provided by the husband.

2. In addition to providing these material needs, a husband has to be kind, understanding and forgiving, and must treat his wife in a tender and loving manner. He not only should avoid hurting her but should bear with her if she ever does something disagreeable, so long as this clemency does not spoil her and she does not habitually behave out of bounds. The Koran reads:

…and treat them [women] kindly. [IV,19}

And the Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, says:

[Fear] God, [fear] God in the matter of women. They are weak partners, a trust from God with you; and they are made by the divine word permissible for you.

He also says:

Whoever of you whose wife behaves in a disagreeable manner and he responds by kindness and patience, God will give him rewards as much as Job will be given for his patience.

Patient behavior was the practice of the Prophet, even when his wife dared to address him harshly. Once his mother-in-law- saw her daugher strike him with her fist on his noble chest. When the enraged mother -in-law began to reproach her daugher, the Prophet smilingly said, “Leave her alone; they do worse than that.” And once Abu Bakr, his father-in-law, was invited to settle some misunderstanding between him and Aishah. The Prophet said to her, “Will you speak, or shall I speak?” Aisha said, “You speak, but do not say except the truth.” Abu Bakr was so outraged that he immediately struck her severely, forcing her to run and seek protection behind the back of the Prophet. Abu Bakr said, “O you the enemy of herself! Does the Messenger of God say but the truth?” The Propeht said, “O Abu Bakr, we did not invite you for this [harsh dealing with Aishah], nor did we anticipate it.”

3. It is further recommended that a husband be relaxed with his wife, and cheer her up with his humor or by making agreeable jokes. The Prophet, peace and belessings be upon him, in spite of his lofty status, used to play with his wife. He ran in competition with Aishah. Sometimes she won, and other times he won. And once, hearing an Abyssinian entertainment team playing outside the home, the Prophet said to Aisha, “Would you like to see them?” When she agreed, he sent for them and they came and performed in front of his door. The Prophet stretched his hand, putting his palm on the open door and letting Aisha’s chin rest on his arm so that she culd see comfortably. A while later the Propeht asked Aishah, “Enough?” She said, “Silence!” Another while later he asked, “Enough?” and the answer was again, “Silence!” But when he asked her for the third time, “Enough? she agreed, “Yes,” and the team went away on a gesture from the Prophet. He then said, “The most perfect belief is that of those who are best-mannered and most tender with their wives. ” The Propeht also used to say, “Surely God does not love a rough person who is boastful, and rude to his wife.” A Bedouin widow once described her husband: “He came always with a smile and left with a greeting. When he was hungry he ate whatever was found, and did not bother when something was missing!”

4. It is of supreme importance that the husband endeavor to handle the matter of sex relations with skill, care and understanding. He should not regard his wife as an object for his own enjoyment alone but as a partner with whom he should always seek mutual bliss, satisfaction and fulfillment. He should always approach her with love and tenderness. In the early stages of marriage, especially in their first expereince on the wedding day, he has to be particulary gentle. The husband should always have due regard for his wife’s feelings and should endeavor to let her reach the degree of full satisfaction in this respect. Because of the importance of this element, early Muslim authorities discussed such details as love play, the techniques that arouse excitement, and the question of orgasm. The right Islamic literature treating this subject far exceeds and is more original and stimulatiing than- but not so obscene as-the crude and vulgar material now in wide circulation in the West. We may discuss here some of the remarks made by these early authorities. They stress the importance of premliminary love play-caresses, fondling, kissing, endearing words- in order to arouse the wife’s sexual passion and prepare for a deeper sensation and a successful conclusion. At the beginning of actual coitus, it is recommended that the following prayer be said:

In the name of Almighty God, the Most High, Please,God, ward off the evil forces away from us and from the blessings You bestow upon us.

The authorities also recommend that in the process of coitus, especially before full penetration, the excitable areas of the male genitals be gently provoked to contribute to completl fulfillment. We have to remind the reader, however, that even at this moment of absorption and ecstasy, propriety and cleanliness have to be maintained. On the one hand, both partners may utter exclamations or ejaculations venting or expressing the intensity of their pleasure, which also may increase the degree of their excitation; but neither may scream to the degree of disrupting the natural privacy of the act. Some Companions of the Prophet, peace be upon him, recommend the repetition of the words: Allahu Akbar, “God is Great.”

On the other hand, it is to be remembered that the liquid (lubricating) material discharged by the sex organs on excitement is counted as a pollution and a polluting element in Islam and that a Muslim is forbidden to smear a part of his or her body with a polluting stuff unnecessarily. Therefore the custom of licking the excitable areas with the tongue said to prevail in the West may not only be unhealthy; it is also forbidden on that account. We also feel that it is indeed disgusting; and this disgust might in the long run plant the seeds of hatred in the hearts of the couple and ultimately break their rellationship.

The position to be assumed by male and female in relation to each other during coitus occupied a great deal of the attention of Muslim authors who treated the subject. They compiled some fifteen basic different positions; and within each choice they suggest varieties of details. We do not need to discuss this matter here at length, since husband and wife, in their search for their own fulfillment, can easily discover these varieties and select what they find to be most suitable and comfortable for themselves. Muslim writers also emphasize that the husband should endeavor to achieve mutual orgasm. If he should fail to hold out sufficiently for his partner, they say he should continue his efforts to have her reach a climax. To rush away from her too soon might be injurious.

They also recommend that parting at the end of the act should be slow, pleasant and cordial, not abrupt or indifferent.

After some rest both parties have to have the full ablution (a bath). This duty does not need to be rushed; but when the time of the next prayer comes, it has to be performed to remove the ceremonial pollution arising from coitus. Prior to having this bath, the parties, like a woman during her priod of menstrual dischage, are forbidden to perform prayers or to touch or read the Koran. Moreover, it is better to delay hair cutting and fingernail-clipping until after the ablution.

It is also recommended that the husband seek to introduce changes and variations in his approach and in the performance, even in little details, in order to avoid boredom. Variations also create a sense of novelty, and novelty stimulates interest and curiosity; and this intensifies the feeling of pleasure and enjoyment. These Muslim etiquettes are probably best summed up in the following words attributed to the Prophet:

Let not one of you fall upon his woman in the manner a male animal suddenly jumps over its female victim. Let there be a messenger [to go] between them.” He was asked, “What is the messenger, O Messenger of God?” He said, “Kissing and endearing speech.

Another tradition reads:

Three practices are shortcomings in a man; namely, to fail to enquire about the name of a man he has just encountered, but was worty of friendship; to refuse a favor extended to him in good faith; and to assault his woman without introductory entertainment [to stimulate her] and so he satisfies his own desire before she can achieve her own fulfillment.

When one of you retires with his wife, let them not strip off their clothes completely in an animal-like manner; and let him begin by [stimulating her by the use of] fine exciting speech and by kissing.

In the course of their game of pleasure a husband and his wife may enjoy and fondle any part of the body of each other; and their engagement in this kind of activity is regarded as a type of divine devotion. However, a husband is discouraged from looking at his wife’s gentials, perhaps for its adverse psychological effect. Moreover, coitus is strictly forbidden during the menstrual period; and penertration in the back passage is always forbidden. If the femal genitals are to be avoided during the menstrual period, presumably because of their temporary blood pollution, a filthier pollution is an enternal factor in the case of the back passage. Prohibition also applies to all types of unnatural and unproductive activities, whether committed between two persons of the same sex or otherwise.

Early Muslim authorities also discussed the advisable frequency of coitus. Some advised that the experience should be repeated at least once every four days. It seems, however, that the matter of frequency should be left to the mood and the personal inclination of the parties concerned, which indeed depend on many factors, including their age and the condtion of their health.

5. A husband should also see to it that his wife has sufficient knowledge of her religious obligations and encourage her in observing her devotional duties. Of special importance are the rules pertaining to the menstrual period. During this period, as well as during the period of postnatal dischange, the oblgation of mandatory prayer is lifted; and coitus is forbidden. The prohibition of coitus is lifted when the blood discharge has stopped and the woman has had the ablution of a full bath.

6. A husband should not harbor doubts or suspicion about his wife unduly. Jealousy is indeed a natural element; and a husband is not to be too indulgent or to remain indifferent in reasonably provocative situations, and surely must guard his wife against all corruptive influences. Yet he should not allow fanciful thoughts to engage his mind and should not behave in a spying manner toward his wife. The Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, said:

There is a type of jealousy which God loves and there is another type which God hates. As for that which God loves, it is the jealousy which is provoked by a legitimate cause of suspicion; and that which God hates is the jealousy which is unduly aroused.

 

The Prophet once asked Fatimah, his own daugher, “What is best for a woman?” She replied, “That she should not mix with men and men should not mix with her.” The Prophet, who was pleased with her answer, hugged her and said, “An offspring resembling its roots.” Thus a happy life depends on mutual trust between the partners; and all that has to be done is to keep away from situations that are likely to incite evil or arouse suspicion.

[…]

8. If the wife becomes pregnant, her husband should display greater consideration for her and should do all he can to alleviate her discomfort. When she is delivered, he should be grateful to God for her safety and for what God has beneficently graced them with. If his wife has been delivered of a male child, he should not go out of his way to show his pleasure; and if it is a female, he should not at all feel disheartened. After all, he does not know which is better for him. The Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, says:

Whoever is graced with a daughter and treats her well and lavished upon her some of the favors God has bestowed upon him, she will be a protection for him against the punishment of the Hell Fire.

Whoever brings home some good things to his children, it will be counted as a divine charity for him. Let him begin by giving the female ones. Whoever cheers up a female child shall have the merit of him who weeps out of divine fear of God; and whoever so intensely fears God, God will protect him from the Hell Fire.

Whoever has two daughers or two sisters under his care and treats them well, he will be my companion in Paradise.

A child, however, should be given a good name, evein if it is delivered in a miscarriage. And shortly after a child’s safe birth, the full text of the call to prayer should be recited in its right ear, and the short one in its left ear. It is recommended that a boy be circumcised on the seventh day of his birth, excluding the day of birth itself. Whether it is a boy or a girl, it is recommended that the family then hold a feast for which a lamb or larger animal should be sacrificed. Some of the meat should be distributed to the poor, as well as the value of gold whose weight is the weight of the baby’s hair. The sacrifice offered on the seventh day of birth is known as ‘aqiqah.

 

The Wife’s Duties

1. The first task of the wife is to create a home a soft relaxing atmosphere in which she and her husband can live together smoothly, happily and enjoyably. The way in which this is to be acheived depends on her taste and their means and upon prevaling values and conditions.

2. A wife must be faithful and devoted to her husband. Her loyalty is due to him first, even before her kin. She should avoid associating with undesirable or suspicous elements and should not entertain alone any male friends.

3. The management of the household is the wife’s primary responsibility. She has to take care of meal preparation, house-cleaning and laundry. Whether she undertakes these tasks herself or has them done under her careful supervision, it is her task to manage them in the best interests of the family. She may expect some cooperation from her husband, but this should depend on what he can afford to do. What is important is the mutual goodwill and love which will no doubt stimulate each party to alleviate the burden of the other as much as possible.

4. The wife should not be too demanding; she must be contented, and appreciative of any kind gesture her husband may extend to her. She should not insist on buying expensive clothes or luxurious peices of furniture beyond her husband’s means.

5. The wife should take care of herself in order to appear always cheerful, charming and attractive to her husband. She should always smell good and may reasonably apply cosmetics but should avoid excessive use of it. Such excess is not only financially unwise but also psychologically harmful. It makes her beauty appear to be merely artificial. An ancient Arab women advised her daugher on her wedding day:

O my daugher! you are leaving the home in which you were brought up to a house unknown to you and to a companion unfamilar to you. Be a floor to him, he will be a roof to you; be a soft seat to him, he will be a pillar for you; and be like a slave girl to him, he will be like a slave boy to you. Avoid inopportune behavior, lest he should be bored with you; and be not aloof lest he should become indifferent to you. If he approaches you, come running to him; and if he turns away, do not impose yourself upon him. Take care of his nose, his eye and his ear. Let him not smell except a good odor from you; let his eye not see you except in an agreeable appearance; and let him hear nothing from you except nice, fine words.

6. In managing the household, the wife should economize and avoid extravagance. She is not to give of her husband’s wealth except within the degreee he approves of. Whatever she gives within this degree, she will share in its divine reward; and what she gives away beyond it will be to the advantage of her husband and to her own disadvantage on the Day of Judgment.

[…]

An objective analysis of the above outline of the mutual rights and obligations of a husband and wife as set out and stipulated by Islam for the guidance of its adherents reveals the following facts:

1. The husband-wife relationship is to be based not on dry legal rules or decisions of the court but on mutal respect, love and regard.

2. The husband is alone responsible for the entire cost of, and the wife is the misstress of, the household. The objective of each is to serve the other and to provide to the other means of comfort, enjoyment and happiness; and the aim of both is to acheive optimum bliss for themselves and to contribute through their offspring to the perpetuation of the human race.

3. A woman is not a chattel or a blind follower but an equal partner. However, her soft nature, her beautiful natural role as the partner who is to provide more for the sexual attraction and excitement, her monthly menstrual discharge with its attending psychological and physical adverse effects, her childbearing and child-rearing–all these natural considerations, not a male dictatorship as has recently been contended, have made her the dependent but respected, virtuous and beloved partner.

4. Within the framework of the above basic considerations, and within the Islamic flexibility which has regard for custom and prevaling traditions, consistent with the moral values of Islam, the couple may choose any type of arrangement for the distribution of their mutual responsiblities in order to meet their needs as they may see fit in the conditions prevailing where they live.

5. An interesting point which emphasizes that the wife does not lose her own independent character on gettting marries is that she always retains her full maiden name. So Miss Nancy Jones on her marriage to Mr. Martin James is called Lady Nancy Jones and not Mrs. James. She may be called Lady Nancy Jones, wife of Mr. James, but not simply Mrs. James. This point is significant, as it expresses both a wife’s greater freedom under Islam and her continued relation with her own family.

Tips to a Better Marriage

By Sr. Muntaqima Abdur-Rashid
“And among His Signs is this, that He created for you mates from among yourselves that you may dwell in tranquillity with them, and He has put love and mercy between your (hearts). Verily in that are Signs for those who reflect.” (30: 21).

I have listed some rules that may benefit those seeking an Islamic marriage, as well as those who are already married. I do not pretend to be an expert of any kind. I have learned what I know through marrying at the early age of 18, just 9 months after embracing Islam. I muddled my way through much of my 14 years of marriage, and consider myself a graduate from the ‘school of hard knocks’. The rules are:

1. Be conscious of your physical appearance.

No one was more conscious of this than the Prophet. His Sunnah reflects keen attention to personal hygiene and good grooming. He kept himself strong and muscular. Most likely the first aspect of you that attracted your mate was your appearance, so don’t think that simply because you are married the task is over. You can’t hide a weight problem under Thawbs’ (dress) and long Khimars’ (veils). Your mate knows. Be aware that you live in a society that places a high premium on physical appearance. It flaunts the shapely female and her muscular counterpart. Temptations that beckon non-Muslims beckon Muslims as well. Don ‘t allow your mate to get side-tracked by the likes of a ‘Raquel Welch or an Arnold Schwarzenegger’. Jog, join a gym, roller skate, swim and stay in shape. Insha’ Allah, you will be more vibrant, more radiant, and more attractive to your mate.

2. Be aware of your role, but do not fall into role-playing.

Muslim spouses sometimes experience difficulties because they are trying to do things ‘by the book’ without giving due consideration to the conditions prevailing in their country. For example, most female converts are taught that the role of the Muslim woman is to be at home raising her children. Supposedly, it is the man who works outside the home to maintain the family. She may have read about birth control and assumed that it has no place for the Muslimah; yet, it is worth noting that the Prophet himself allowed coitus interruptus. If ideal Islamic conditions prevailed, there would be no reason for a sister to worry about her financial situation interfering with her right to bear children. However, without an Islamic society, needy Muslim families may have to resort to welfare and food stamps rather than Zakaah and Sadaqah. This creates a feeling of dependence and humiliation that can place extreme stress on a marriage. In this ease, it may be helpful for the Muslim couple to delay having children, or for the wife to work while the children are young and until the couple ‘s financial situation improves. Islam gives you this flexibility. Don’t be afraid or ashamed to use it.

3. Be a companion to your mate.

Try to show enthusiasm for your spouse’s interests and hobbies. It is well-known that the Prophet would run races with ‘Ayesha. By all means try to involve your mate in your interests.

4. Be active in Islamic community life.

This will strengthen your commitment to Islam while providing you wish a wholesome social outlet. Encourage your spouse to engage in activities that promote Islam. Have dinners at your home for Muslims as well as non-Muslims, and don’t neglect your relatives. These activities will indirectly enhance the quality of your marriage through widening your circle of activity and contacts.

5. Admit your mistakes and have a forgiving, generous attitude when your mate errs.

This country is a difficult place to live in. Most Muslims fall short of the Islamic ideal. Contradictions abound. Be quick to admit your shortcomings and work to amend them. Be understanding when your mate does not live up to the Islamic ideal and gently try to motivate him or her in the right direction.

6. Have a sense of humour.

Be able to chuckle at life’s minor aggravations.

7. Be modest when around members of the opposite sex.

Do not try to test your spouse’s affection by feigning interest in another. This will only cause dissension and bad feelings.

8. Share household duties.

Brothers, take note. This is especially important these days when women work outside the home. The Prophet always helped his wives around the house and even mended his own clothes. Who knows? You might find you actually like preparing the evening meal or taking care of junior so your wife can have the afternoon off. The Messenger of Allah said, “The most perfect of the believers in faith is the best of them in moral excellence, and the best of you are those who are kindest to their wives.” (at-Tirmidhi).

9. Surprise each other with gifts.

Treat her to an evening out alone, away from the children. There are no words to describe the lift this can give to a marriage.

10. Communicate your feelings to one another, good and bad.

Tell him how handsome he looks. Where there is disagreement, have an open discussion. Don ‘ t collect red stamps. Nip it in the bud .

11. Live within your means.

Stay away from credit cards if you can. Sisters, take note. Don’t envy the possessions of your friends, and don’t belittle your husband because he can’t provide them for you. Muslim couples will do well to stay away from ostentatious living. The Prophet did not live luxuriously, and neither should you.

12. Respect your mate’s need for privacy.

A quiet time to oneself each day, either at home or away from home, can make a disagreeable person agreeable.

13. Don ‘t share personal problems with others.

There are a few exceptions to this rule, but if you must discuss personal problems, make sure it is with a person in whom you have the utmost confidence. If you have a learned Muslim brother or sister in your community, seek him or her out first.

14. Be sensitive to your mate’s moods.

If you want to share a personal achievement, don’t do it when your spouse is ‘down in the dumps.’ Wait for the proper time.

You may be saying to yourself, “All This is easier said than done.” Well, you’re right. A successful marriage doesn’t just happen. It’s not simply a matter of luck or finding the right person. It takes hard work and determination. It means being selfless and making mistakes. It means having vengeance on your mind but forgiveness in your heart. But, then, its perfection is “half of faith.”

“And those who pray, ‘Our Lord! Grant unto us spouses and offspring who will be the comfort of our eyes, and give us (the grace) to lead the righteous.'” Qur’an 25:74

“The whole world is an asset and the best asset is a good wife.” (Muslim)

“And among His Signs is this, that He created for you mates from among yourselves that you may dwell in tranquillity with them, and He has put love and mercy between your (hearts). Verily in that are Signs for those who reflect.” (30: 21).

How to Make Your Husband Happy

by Sheikh Mohammed Abdelhaleem Hamed

 

(NOTE: To help strengthening the Muslim families and spread the teachings of Islam
in building families, the Muslim Students’ Association at the
University of
Alberta prepared a extremely summarized translation for two books. The
books are Arabic by Sheikh Mohammad Abdelhaleem Hamed. An Egyptian scholar,
who graduated from the Islamic University of AlMadinah Al-Munawwarah in
Saudi Arabia. The two books are:

1- How to make your wife happy
2- How to make your husband happy

They exceed the traditional presentation of stating rights and duties to the ‘Adab (good
manners) and extend into application of these rights in daily life. The
following summary highlights mainly the responsibilities or examples of what
could or should be done. Every single item mentioned by the author is
supported by evidences from Qur’an, Sunnah or the actions of the companions,
but evidences are omitted in this translation.)

———————————————

1- Beautiful Reception
———————-
After returning from work, school, travel, or whatever has separated you,
begin with a good greeting.

* Meet him with a cheerful face.
* Beautify and perfume yourself.
* Start with good news and delay any bad news until he has rested.
* Receive him with loving and yearning sentences.
* Make hard efforts for excellence of the food & having it ready on time.

2- Beautify and Soften the Voice
——————————–
* For your husband only, it shouldn’t be used in front of non-mahram men
(men who can marry you if you were unmarried).

3- Smelling Good and Physical Beautification
——————————————–
* Taking good care of your body and fitness.
* Put on nice and attractive clothes and perfumes.
* Bath regularly and, after the monthly period, remove any blood traces
or bad smells.
* Avoide that your husband observes you in dirty clothes or rough shape.
* Avoide prohibited types of ornamentation, e.g. tatoo.
* Use the types of perfumes, colors, and clothes that the husband likes.
* Change hair style, perfumes, etc. from time to time.
* However with these things you should avoid excessiveness and, of course,
only act as such in front of mahrem men and women.

4- Intercourse
————–
* Hasten for intercourse when your husband feels compulsion for it.
* Keep your body clean and smelling good as possible including cleaning
yourself of released fluids during intercourse.
* Exchange loving phrases with your husband.
* Leave your husband to fully satisfy his desire.
* Choose suitable times and good occasions for exciting your husband,
and encouraging him to do intercourse, e.g. after returning from a
travel, weekends, etc.

5- Satisfaction With What Allah (SWT) Has Allotted
————————————————–
* You shouldn’t be depressed because your husband is poor or works in a
simple job.
* You should look at poor, sick, and handicapped people and remember
Allah (SWT) for all that was given to you.
* You should remember that real wealth lays in Iman and piety.

6- Indifference to Worldly Things
———————————
* You should not consider this world as your hope and interest.
* You should not ask your husband for many unnecessary things.
* Asceticism does not mean not to enjoy what is good and permissible
(Halal), but it means that one should look forward to the hereafter and
utilize whatever Allah SWT gave them to achieve paradise (Jannah).
* Encourage your husband to reduce expenses and save some money in order
to give charity and feed poor and needy people.

7- Appreciation
—————
* By the saying of the prophet, the majority of people in hell were women
because they were ungrateful and deny the good done to them.
* The result of being grateful is that your husband will love you more and
will do his best to please you in more ways.
* The result of being ungrateful is that your husband will be dissappointed
and will start asking himself: Why should I do good to her, if she never
appreciates?

8- Devotion and Loyalty
———————–
* In particular in times of calamities in your husband’s body or business,
e.g. an accident or a bankruptcy
* Supporting him through your own work, money, and properties if needed.

9- Compliance to Him
——————–
* In all what he commands you, unless it is prohibited (Haram).
* In Islam, the husband is the leader of the family, and the wife is his
support and consultant.

 

10-Pleasing Him If He Is Angry
——————————
* First off, try to avoid what will guarantee his anger.
* But if it happens that you can’t, then try to appease him as follows:
1- If you mistaken, then apologize.
2- If he mistaken then:
# Keep still instead of arguing or
# Yield you right or
# Wait until he is no longer angry and discuss the matter peacefully
with him.
3- If he was angry because of external reasons then:
# Keeping silent untill his anger goes
# Find execuses for him, e.g. tired, problems at work, some one
insulted him
# Do not ask many questions and insist on knowing what happened,
e.g. 1) You should tell me what happened? 2) I must know what
made you so angry. 3) You are hidding something, and I have the
right to know

11-Guardianship While He is Absent
———————————-
* Protecting yourself from any prohibited relations.
* Keep the secrets of the family, particularly intercourse and things
that the husbands don’t like other people to know.
* Take care of the house and children.
* Takecare of his money and properties.
* Do not go out of your house without his permission and put on full
hijab.
* Refuse people whom he does not like to come over.
* Do not allow any non-mahram man to be alone with you in any place.
* Be good with his parents and relatives in his absence.

12- Showing Respect for his Family and Friends
———————————————-
* You should welcome his guests and try to please them, especially his
parents.
* You should avoid problems as much as you can with his relatives.
* You should avoid putting him is a position where he had to choose
between his mother and his wife.
* Show good hospitality for his guests by arranging a nice place for them to
sit in, perfection of food, welcoming their wives, etc.
* Encourage him to visit his relatives and invite them to your home.
* Phone his parents and sisters, send letters to them, buy gifts for
them, support them in calamities, etc..

13- Admirable Jealousy
———————-
* Jealousy is a sign for wife’s love for her husband but it should be kept
within the limits of Islam, e.g. not insulating or backbiting others,
disrespecting them, etc..
* You should not follow or create unfounded doubts.

14-Patience and Emotional Support
———————————
* Be patient when you face poverty and strained circumstances.
* When you face calamities and disasters that may happen to you, your
hsubandh, your children, relatives or properties, e.g. diseases,
accidents, death, etc.
* When facing hardships in Da’wah (imprisonment, getting fired, arrested,
etc.), be patient and encourage him to keep on the path of Allah and
remind him of paradise.
* When he mistreats you, counteract his ill-treatment by good treatment

15- Support in Obedience to Allah, Da’wah and Jihad
—————————————————-
* Cooperate with your husband and remind him of different obligatory
and voluntary worships.
* Encourage him to pray at night.
* Listen and reciting the Qur’an individually and with your husband.
* Listen to Islamic tapes and songs individually and with your husband.
* Remember Allah SWT much, particularly after Fajr and before Maghrib.
* Share in arranging Da’wah activities for women and children.
* Learn Islamic rules (ahkam) and good manners (‘adab) for women.
* Support your husband’s activities by encouraging him, offering wise
opinions, soothing his pains, etc.
* Yielding some of your rights and a part of your time with your husband
for Da’wah.
* Encourage him to go for Jihad when needed and remind him that you and
children will be in the preservation of Allah SWT.

16-Good Housekeeping
——————–
* Keep it clean, decorated and well arranged.
* Change house arrangements from time to time to avoid boredom.
* Perfect of food and prepare healthy foods.
* Learn all the necessary skills for managing the house, e.g. sewing.
* Learn how to raise children properly and in an Islamic way.

17-Preservation of Finances and the Family
——————————————
* Do not spend from his money, even for charity without his permission
unless you are sure that he agrees on this.
* Protect his house, car, etc. while he is absent.
* Keep the children in good shape, clean clothes, etc. Take care of
their nutrition, health, education, manners, etc. Teach them Islam
and tell them the stories of the Prophets and companions.

Finally, please make Du’a for the writer; Sheikh Mohammad Abdelhaleem Hamed,
for the translator brother Abu Talhah, and for the reviewer,
brother Adam Qurashi. Remember this is not a perfect translation so
forgive us our faults and correct our errors.

Muslim Students’ Association
University of Alberta
Edmonton, Canada
February, 1999

 How to Make Your Wife Happy

by Sheikh Mohammed Abdelhaleem Hamed

 

(NOTE: To help strengthening the Muslim families and spread the teachings of Islam
in building families, the Muslim Students’ Association at the
University of
Alberta prepared a extremely summarized translation for two books. The
books are Arabic by Sheikh Mohammad Abdelhaleem Hamed. An Egyptian scholar,
who graduated from the Islamic University of AlMadinah Al-Munawwarah in
Saudi Arabia. The two books are:

1- How to make your wife happy
2- How to make your husband happy

They exceed the traditional presentation of stating rights and duties to the ‘Adab (good
manners) and extend into application of these rights in daily life. The
following summary highlights mainly the responsibilities or examples of what
could or should be done. Every single item mentioned by the author is
supported by evidences from Qur’an, Sunnah or the actions of the companions,
but evidences are omitted in this translation.)

———————————————

1. Beautiful Reception

After returning from work, school, travel, or whatever has separated you:
* begin with a good greeting.
* Start with Assalamau ‘Aliaykum and a smile. Salam is a sunnah and a du’aa for her as well.
* Shake her hand and leave bad news for later!

2. Sweet Speech and Enchanting Invitations

* Choose words that are positive and avoid negative ones.
* Give her your attention when you speak of she speaks.
* Speak with clarity and repeat words if necessary until she understands.
* Call her with the nice names that she likes, e.g. my sweet-heart, honey, saaliha, etc.

3. Friendliness and Recreation

* Spend time talking together.
* Spread to her goods news.
* Remember your good memories together.

4. Games and Distractions

* Joking around & having a sense of humor.
* Playing and competing with each other in sports or whatever.
* Taking her to watch permissible (halal) types of entertainment.
* Avoiding prohibited (haram) things in your choices of entertainment.

5. Assistance in the Household

* Doing what you as an individual can/like to do that helps out, especially if she is sick or tired.
* The most important thing is making it obvious that he appreciates her hard work.

6. Consultation (Shurah)

* Specifically in family matters.
* Giving her the feeling that her opinion is important to you.
* Studying her opinion carefully.
* Be willing to change an opinion for hers if it is better.
* Thanking her for helping him with her opinions.

7. Visiting Others

* Choosing well raised people to build relations with. There is a great reward in visiting relatives and pious people. (Not in wasting time while visiting!)
* Pay attention to ensure Islamic manners during visits.
* Not forcing her to visit whom she does not feel comfortable with.

8. Conduct During Travel

* Offer a warm farewell and good advice.
* Ask her to pray for him.
* Ask pious relatives and friends to take care of the family in your absence.
* Give her enough money for what she might need.
* Try to stay in touch with her whether by phone, e-mail, letters, etc..
* Return as soon as possible.
* Bring her a gift!
* Avoid returning at an unexpected time or at night.
* Take her with you if possible.

9. Financial Support

* The husband needs to be generous within his financial capabilities. He should not be a miser with his money (nor wasteful).
* He gets rewards for all what he spends on her sustenance even for a small piece of bread that he feeds her by his hand (hadeith).
* He is strongly encouraged to give to her before she asks him.

10. Smelling Good and Physical Beautification

* Following the Sunnah in removing hair from the groin and underarms.
* Always being clean and neat.
* Put on perfume for her.

11. Intercourse

* It is obligatory to do it habitually if you have no excuse (sickness, etc.)
* Start with “Bismillah” and the authentic du’a.
* Enter into her in the proper place only (not the anus).
* Begin with foreplay including words of love.
* Continue until you have satisfied her desire.
* Relax and joke around afterwards.
* Avoid intercourse during the monthly period because it haram
* Do what you can to avoid damaging her level of Hiyaa (shyness and modesty) such as taking your clothes together instead of asking her to do it first while he is looking on.
* Avoid positions during intercourse that may harm her such as putting pressure on her chest and blocking her breath, especially if you are heavy.
* Choose suitable times for intercourse and be considerate as sometimes she maybe sick or exhausted.

12. Guarding Privacy

* Avoid disclosing private information such as bedroom secrets, her personal problems and other private matters.

13. Aiding in the Obedience to Allah

* Wake her up in the last third of the night to pray “Qiam-ul-Layl” (extra prayer done at night with long sujood and ruku’ua).
* Teach her what you know of the Qur’an and its tafseer.
* Teach her “Dhikr” (ways to remember Allah by the example of the prophet) in the morning and evening.
* Encourage her to spend money for the sake of Allah such as in a charity sale.
* Take her to Hajj and Umrah when you can afford to do so.

14. Showing Respect for her Family and Friends

* Take her to visit her family and relatives, especially her parents.
* Invite them to visit her and welcome them.
* Give them presents on special occasions.
* Help them when needed with money, effort, etc..
* Keep good relations with her family after her death if she dies first.
Also in this case the husband is encouraged to follow the sunnah and keep giving what she used to give in her life to her friends and family.

15. (Islamic) Training & Admonition

This includes
* The basics of Islam
* Her duties and rights
* Reading and writing
* Encouraging her to attend lessons and halaqahs
* Islamic rules (ahkam) related to women
* Buying Islamic books and tapes for the home library

16. Admirable Jealousy

* Ensure she is wearing proper hijab before leaving house.
* Restrict free mixing with non-mahram men.
* Avoiding excess jealousy. Examples of this are:
1- Analyzing every word and sentence she says and overloading her speech by meanings that she did not mean.
2- Preventing her from going out of the house when the reasons are just.
3- Preventing her from answering the phone.
4- etc.

17. Patience and Mildness

* Problems are expected in every marriage so this is normal. What is wrong is excessive responses and magnifying problems until a marital breakdown.
* Anger should be shown when she exceeds the boundaries of Allah SWT, by delaying prayers, backbiting, watching prohibited scenes on TV, etc..
* Forgive the mistakes she does to you (See item 18).
* How can you best correct her mistakes?
1- First, implicit and explicit advice several times.
2- Then by turning your back to her in bed (displaying your feelings). Note that this does not include leaving the bedroom to another room, leaving the house to another place, or not talking with her.
3- The last solution is lightly hitting (when allowable) her. (Zawaj.com Editor’s note: We do NOT agree with or endorse this particar suggestion. We are printing this article as it was written, however we believe that striking a woman is not an acceptable solution to problems. In fact, it contradicts all of the other advice offered in this article.) In this case, the hsuband should consider the following: – He should know that sunnah is to avoid beating as the Prophet PBUH never beat a woman or a servant. – He should do it only in extreme cases of disobedience, e.g. refusing intercourse without cause frequently, constantly not praying on time, leaving the house for long periods of time without permission nor refusing to tell him where she had been, etc.
– It should not be done except after having turned from her bed and discussing the matter with her as mentioned in Qur’an.
– He should not hit her hard injuring her, or hit her on her face or on sensitive parts of her body.
– He should avoid shaming her such as by hitting her with a shoe, etc.

18. Pardoning and Appropriate Censure

* Accounting her only for larger mistakes.
* Forgive mistakes done to him but account her for mistakes done in Allah’s rights, e.g. delaying prayers, etc..
* Remember all the good she does whenever she makes a mistake.
* Remember that all humans err so try to find excuses for her such as maybe she is tired, sad, having her monthly cycle or that her commitment to Islam is growing.
* Avoid attacking her for the bad cooking of the food as the Prophet PBUH never blamed any of his wives for this. If he likes the food, he eats and if he doesn’t then he does not eat and does not comment.
* Before declaring her to be in error, try other indirect approaches that are more subtle than direct accusations.
* Escape from using insults and words that may hurt her feelings.
* When it becomes necessary to discuss a problem wait until you have privacy from others.
* Waiting until the anger has subsided a bit can help to keep a control on your words.

Finally, please make Du’a for the writer; Sheikh Mohammad Abdelhaleem Hamed,
for the translator brother Abu Talhah and for reviewer Br. Adam Qurashi. Remember this is not a perfect translation so forgive us our faults and correct our errors.

Muslim Students’ Association
University of Alberta
Edmonton, Canada
FebruNIKAH: HUSBAND’S OBLIGATIONS

by Ml I Khamisa for Al-Jamiat Magazine

 

Have you ever pondered over the Khutbah which the Imaam recited to you before you enthusiastically uttered ‘Nakahtuhaa Wa Qabiltuhaa Wa Tazawwajtuhaa?’

Let me help you and shed some light over this contract which you have made yourself party to, that is ‘The Nikah Contract’. The Imaam recited to you three verses from the Noble Qurãn:

  • Surah Nissa (4) verse 1
    O Mankind Fear your guardian Lord who created you from a single soul, and He created from it its mate and from them He scattered many men and women…
  • Surah Aale Imraan (3) verse 102
    O Ye who believe! Fear Allah as He should be feared and die not except in a state of Islam.
  • Surah Ahzaab (33) verse 70
    O Ye who believe. Fear Allah and make your utterances straight.

TAQWA
The common element in each of these verses is the Arabic word ‘Taqwa’ (God Consciousness). In these verses you are reminded to fear Allah Taãla in the manner you treat the lady you are taking as your wife. There is no one to see the way you conduct yourself within your home. Let the fact and belief that Allah is watching guide you in your treatment of the woman you have made your wife by granting her the respect and dignity she deserves.

You have brought somebody’s daughter into your own home. She left her family, her friends, close associates and in many cases even the town that she grew up in and she came to a strange environment just to share the rest of her life with you. Was she handed over to you to be a target of your physical and verbal abuse?

The Prophet (Sallallaahu Álayhi Wasallam) is reported to have said in connection with the treatment of animals: ‘Fear Allah in your treatment of these animals who cannot speak.’ If this was his concern for the animals, how tremendously greater would his concern have been for humans; therefore, can you imagine what his reaction would have been to the wife battering that takes place nowadays?

What then are the most important ingredients of a happy marriage? Allah Taãla says in Surah Roum (30) verse 21.
‘And from amongst His signs is that He created for you from amongst yourselves partners, that you may live in tranquility with them, and He has created love and mercy between you. Verily in that are signs for those who reflect.’

It is this love and mercy that strengthens the bond of marriage. The ability to overlook each other’s faults goes a long way in cementing the relationship. Once a man came to Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Álayhi Wasallam) and said, ‘O Allah’s messenger, how many times should I forgive the wrongs of my slaves.’ The Prophet (Sallallaahu Álayhi Wasallam) replied, ‘Forgive them seventy times a day.’ If a worker is entitled to so much of compassion what about your lifelong companion?

BEST OF YOU
Today, we are very courteous to our clients, appreciative to our colleagues and cheerful to our friends. Unfortunately this warmth is not extended to the poor wife who is most deserving of this courtesy and charm. The Prophet (Sallallaahu Álayhi Wasallam) is reported to have said, ‘The most complete of believers in faith are those who are best in character. The best of you are those who are best to their wives.’ (Mishkat)

Every person has shortcomings. It is therefore quite natural to find this in your partner. The Prophet (Sallallaahu Álayhi Wasallam) has advised us to take pleasure in the good and overlook the bad. Have you ever spared the thought that there may be so many habits which you possess that may be bringing grief to your wife? She may have been patiently bearing it not wanting to hurt your feelings.
Let us go back and fulfil the demands of this contract.

TREAT YOUR WIFE AS YOU WOULD LIKE YOUR SON-IN-LAW TO TREAT YOUR DAUGHTER.

By: Ml. I Khamissa

 

 NIKAH: WIFE’S OBLIGATIONS

by Ml I Khamisa for Al-Jamiat Magazine

 

Many prospective wives seem to have their hopes dashed after they enter into the contract of marriage. Once the honeymoon is over, suddenly things are not so rosy any more, and the reality of married life seems to be a far cry from the Haraam movies which many have been watching or the novels which end up with ‘and they lived happily ever after’. In a world where it has become fashionable to engage in immoral activities and illicit relationships, it is becoming increasingly difficult to convince people that marriage is an important component of a pure society.

What guidelines does the Shariáh give the wife to help cement the relationship between herself and her husband?

The Qurãn in Surah Shuáraa (v74), describes the prayer of the pious in the following manner: ‘Oh our lord! Grant us wives and offspring who will be the joy and comfort of our eyes.’ The explanation of the above verse is clearly illustrated in the beautiful words of Nabi (Sallallaahu Álayhi Wasallam) (as narrated by ibn Abbaas) ‘The best woman (wife) is the one whom, when you look at her she pleases you, when you command her she obeys you, when you are not in her presence she safeguards herself and your belongings.’

Today, the wife adorns herself for weddings and other social events, beautifying herself to attract the attention of everyone else besides the one who is most important in her life. The husband comes home tired from work, only to find his wife shabbily dressed, too glued to the drama on TV to even reply to the Salaam of her husband. Meal times and other household duties are dictated by the box. The children are sent away to their rooms with the words ‘Go to your room and read your Qurãn – or finish up your homework.’ These words, mind you, are not uttered because of some great concern for the child’s education; in fact it is only mentioned to get them out of the way.

Remember! Your children may not do what you ask them to do, but they very often do what they see you do. What kind of example are we setting for these impressionable young minds?

Unrealistic demands made by the wife do not help much to strengthen the marital bond. Being dictated by fashion and the way the people next door are living, the wife forces the husband to beg and borrow just to keep up with the Jones’s. ‘If your brother’s wife can have it, then why can’t I?’ ‘Well your sister has it in her house.’ Comparing ourselves with those who have more than us does not help to relieve tension between husband and wife. The words of Nabi (Sallallaahu Álayhi Wasallam) beautifully explain:

‘Look at those who have less than you, do not look at those who have more than you, (if you do so) then you are more likely to appreciate Allah’s favours upon you.’

If a man had to choose a wife according to the guidelines given by Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Álayhi Wasallam), what kind of a person was he to look for? The Hadith states: ‘A woman is married for four (things); her wealth, her family status, her beauty and her religion. So choose (marry) the religious woman, otherwise you will be a loser.’

The most important quality of the wife is consciousness of her Islamic responsibilities. How Deeni conscious are you? How supportive are you of your husband when he is engaged in Deeni activities? Are you preventing him from serving humanity?

The Qurãn in Surah Rum (v21) explains the purpose of marriage as a source of comfort for both partners. No one has married ‘Mr Perfect’ and no one is perfect! Are you making the environment in the home conducive to living in peace and harmony or does your husband feel that he rather be at work than at home with you?

What degree of obedience does the Shariáh command the wife to have for her husband? A Hadith of Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Álayhi Wasallam) explains, ‘If I had to command anyone to prostrate to somebody, I would have commanded the wife to prostrate before her husband.’ However, if your husband commands you to do something against the Shariáh you do not have to obey him.

If the objectives of both husband and wife are to please Allah, the couple will find more common ground on which to build the relationship.

-by Ml I Khamisa

 

Islamic Sex Education?

Sex in our society, sex in Islam and the hypocrisy of our society!

By M. Tufail

Bismillah

Sex- a topic with the most polarized attitude known in our society! With all the presumption and the cultural aspects accredited to it, all the more desperate and urgent is the need to initiate a communication regarding this vacuum in our minds, in our conduct and in our society is not only

Why does this attitude prevail in our society? Thanks to our religion? NO! Thanks to our cultural upbringing, ignorance and the hypocritical attitude of our society, which allows sex everywhere, which condones sex as “student life kae mashghaley” (part of growing up, in the sense of first experiences)- the most pathetic excuse I ever heard. It accepts marrying off their daughters to those very students, but will run amok if a girl speaks of “hush…. that disease”, called AIDS! No, I am not exaggerating, I hardly could believe my ears, when a literature graduate mother, of educated background, hushed her then medical student daughter into silence while we were discussing about HIV and AIDS, telling her not to mention this disease without any inhibitions, blurting out its name.

Sex is hushed and curtained off to the bedroom and speaking about it is a sin, accredits a loose character and well, I could go on echoing all those remarks, prevailing even in our Muslim society- be it Pakistan, the middle East or the sisters (I guess the brothers aren’t any better) and gatherings in the western hemisphere, to which I have been, regretfully but in not avoidable situations, witness.

Grown up in the west, being educated in the normal public schools and experiencing the era when sex education was introduced in the curriculum of German schools, I could follow the conservative attitude of our society, but what shattered my respect for our society was the hypocrisy as pointed out above. In the West I knew what people thought, you knew who is sexually active or at least you knew how they think of it and thus also protect yourself in some way from it. Boys knew I wouldn’t date, so I wasn’t asked. Period. In the Muslims countries, you can’t guarantee and know where the person would have been around, the very person you may end up marrying through a proposal “with good and respected family background and bright future” I would have loved to see the faces of people, if a girl would have asked him to get his HIV test done before saying yes, let alone his attitude towards family planning or contraceptives!

Can we endorse this hypocrisy as a society?

I can’t accept this ignorance and hypocrisy, neither as a Muslim nor as a responsible citizen of any society, be it ANYWHERE in the world!! I thus pondered over this hypocrisy and found many answers, which collectively I would title as “ignorance and uneasiness of expression with respect to our sexuality, blindly following cultures and traditions, instead challenging it through education, as Muslim in the days of Muhammad (S) used to do”. They used to come up to him and ask and discuss issues pertaining to sexuality; shyness is indeed a virtue of a Muslim- male or female, but not in matters of knowledge or deen/concept of life (Islam). Any person, yes in fact even child who reads the Qur’an and understand it, will come across the teaching pertaining to reproduction, creation (32:7-9)), menstruation (2:222), family life, sexual positions (2:223) and even ejaculation (86:6)(75:38) along with the moral and the social ethics in the light of Islam. This is the basics of Islamic Sex education: treating it as a blessing form the Almighty, a gift to human nature, a source of peace and tranquillity, as well as hasana in the light of high social and moral ethics.

Sex is not a “dirty word”, as per our cultural concepts; it is a gift of God to mankind. Islam provides a legal frame to enjoy this blessing from God, which is NOT only for procreation. The sexual urge should be enjoyed as His blessing, but within a commitment. Contrary to some religions and philosophies, Islam doesn’t degrade Sex to the status of ” lust of flesh, thus sinful, which the soul has to conquer.” In fact exercised within the appropriate frame, it is not only a source of emotional satisfaction and enjoyment, thence peace, but also a source of hasana is promised in return.

In this very light, we Muslims should emancipate ourselves in the light of the open minded and very modern concept of life Islam, abrogating all those cultural and traditional influences, which only turn the wheel backwards.

Sex education should start at home or in the frame of Islamic Sunday/Friday Schools, wherever the possibility is given. It should however be actively supported through the participation and support, as well as objective answering to the questions, through parents and elder siblings. In the Islamic Schools Muslim teachers, pref. Physicians should come forward and fill this vacuum. What should be taught? Anatomical and physiological aspects, table of puberty, along with the physical changes, need for family life, sexual drive, menstruation and pre-menstrual syndrome, conception and development of the child/foetus, contraception and then also the STD’s and the Islamic concepts of it. The emotional, mental and social aspects of puberty should be discussed, moral, social and Islamic ethics of sexuality should be brought to word; in the western hemisphere tell them how to avoid peer pressure.

Preferably premarital counselling should be conducted, including sex education. Scholars prefer sex education in separate classes, contrary to the model in Iran, as described somewhere. We should however not forget the potential of marital counselling along with sex education in marital life. A very good book in this regard is the “Muslim Marriage guide”, written by Ruqayya M. Waris.

We need to grow out of the traditional baggage and pressure, which we carried along with us for centuries, malpractising the most modern concept of life, if we only gave ourselves the chance to understand it. The potential is enormous, we only need to take up the challenge and give ourselves the chance, thus abrogating this hypocrisy in our society of which we ourselves-me and you, are a part.

A proper sex education may not only be an effort against this hypocrisy and a potential towards a more natural attitude to sex, but also help to fight the very grave crime of child sex abuse. It could happen to your child, get involved and prevent it, fight it!


Written in response to an article “Sex everywhere” at Chowk.com, edited w.r.t transcription of Urdu language; Ramadan 1999

19. April 1999

Sex Roles in Muslim Families in the U.S.

by Mahmoud Abu Saud

The first half of this article is a highly scientific analysis of gender and sex roles. In the second half, the article uses the scientific discussion as a springboard to explain gender and sex roles within the Muslim family.
ORIGIN OF THE FAMILY : BIOLOGICAL FACTOR

Unless sex education addresses “values, morality, deferment of gratification, and goals, it is incomplete and potentially dangerous.”

Donald Ian Macdonald.
An Approach to the Prevention of
Teenage Pregnancy,
Public Health Report,
July/August 1987

Sociologists give different definitions of the family institution to which we shall refer later. However, and for the purpose of this essay, we shall consider that the basic biological coupling of a male and a female is an essential element to constitute a family, as homosexuality does not exist in nature.

THE CELL

Biologically speaking, all living things are made of just two kinds of cells: eukaryotes and prokaryotes. The first ones are those cells which have nuclei and multiply by mating or marriage. The second, the prokaryotes, are those which have no nuclei and accordingly are unicellular, multiplying by division. Each cell has its hereditary traits and carries its information in DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid). “. . . two extremely long strands of it, wrapped around each other in a double helix.”‘ It is of fascinating interest to know that only the eukaryotes are “capable of making up the bodies of the marvels of creation-those with hearts, lungs, kidneys and brains.112 The prokaryotes are parasitic by nature and are deadly enemies of the eukaryotes who eat them up or destroy them with their enzymatic secretions. Human organisms are no more than the sum of their cells functioning together.

Sex, a word for the exchange of genetic material, requires two organisms to come together and reproduce. Though there are some organisms that can reproduce without sex, such as some bacteria, their progeny are doomed to be identical to the parent without variation or susceptibility to evolution. Evolution needs genetic variety which can only be realized by means of ever new combinations of genes of heterosexual cells-the eukaryotes.

Before exploring the functioning of cells as constituents of human males and females, it is of great interest to know that cells themselves are the product of atoms. Atoms follow an eternal strict code of behavior as if they had some sort of consciousness that brings them together in a highly organized manner. They form molecules in extraordinarily geometric forms; molecules make “tissues that become the organs that inexorably build the organism.. Every molecule has its own distinct properties by virtue of the atoms that make it up and… life has its properties by virtue of the molecule used in constructing living organisms.”113 All living organisms, including bacteria, must use nucleic acid organized into genes for reproduction. The genes are the true carriers of all hereditary traits and properties of the offspring.

Such established elementary knowledge reveals some basic facts of life that concern us in this study. The first fact is that prokaryotes-the unicellular organisms-are parasitic and destructive. They are not capable of evolution and do not constitute any part of our functioning organisms.

The second is that eukaryotes cannot continue to exist without marriage as they multiply by means of coupling. Their union is the basis of evolution to the better through a process of natural selection. They are endowed with a gift to choose the fittest from among themselves and thus genetically improve.

The third is that all molecules belong in their first origin to the atom, which by virtue of its nature does not exist without union. The components of the atom: the protons, the neutrons, and the electrons are likewise bound to unite.

Thus, marriage is simply a law of existence, an inherent property ingrained in our cells and constitution without which we cannot continue to live or evolve. In each cellular marriage there must be the male and the female, or the positive which gives in mating to the negative which takes. In the world of the cell, which is our world, everything goes on progressing in meticulous order. Order defines the cell as the cell defines life- “Before there was life, there had to be a system… there has to be order. . . it is life… Death is disorder.”

HUMAN BIOLOGY

Much has been discovered about the cell, its composition, its functioning and its reproduction yet nobody has been able to guess how the first cell came into being. The eukaryotes, as mentioned before, are highly organized and highly specialized cells that build our body and, in fact, bring us into life. Every cell is composed of several layers above layers of molecules separated by membranes, and in its middle there is the nucleus ringed by double membrane. The nucleus holds the genes-the ultimate dictators of the cell-wound into the coils of chromosomes.

Humans reproduce through the union of a male and a female cell, exactly as any other offspring is reproduced. When fertilization (union or mating) takes place, a new cell is formed and the sex, together with the physical structure, including the brain, are determined by the genes united in the new cell. Both males and females have the same basis of a chromosome (X). But from the very beginning, if this basis is coupled with one (X) chromosome or more, the offspring is a female. If the basis is coupled with one chromosome (Y) or more, it is a male.

Once the new cell is “born,” it starts functioning on its own, activated by its inherent power administered by the new set of genes, and is called, in this early stage, a zygote. Soon after inception, male embryos secrete a predominant hormone called androgen, while female ones secrete estrogen, and later on the female hormones: the progesterone and the prolactin. The growth of the embryo, whether male or female, follows the same laws of growth: the reproduction of the specialized cells continues building up our different organs, without any deviation except for hormonal secretions. By the time the child is born, he or she has already been influenced by the most active hormones which affect the functioning of the brain.

The human brain is one of the greatest wonders of creation. In its lower part, there is a small zone called the “limbic system,” composed of structures which are involved in both human emotion and motivation. One of these structures, named amygdala, is among the major brain parts responsible for our behavior, as it affects some endocrinal secretions, especially those touching upon our sexual dispositions. Moreover, “the cortex also feeds it (the limbic system) with condensed indications of cortical activity, including categorized representations of the state of the external world. It appraises and evaluates the activities of (the upper brain -system)… and balances current priorities with regard to short term and long-term needs of the organism and the selection and evaluation of different integrative activities.”

It is well-established that the structure called “hypothalamus” of the limbic system is prenatally formed and becomes indelibly ‘sex-typed’ through the action of sex-hormones, thereby permanently pre-disposing the animal to male or female physiological and behavioral responses. In most animals this critical period of hormone action is thought to occur prenatally and thereafter be immutable. “This irrevocable hormonal sex- typing of the nervous system has the most far-reaching implications for sex differences in human behavior.”This means that from the earliest days of conception the new fertilized cell or zygote our brain starts its formation, disposition and mode of functioning.

When born, an infant carries within himself or herself its own particular way of thinking, imagination, motivation and manner of evaluation. Even among individuals of the same sex, there are genetic inherent differences due to the differences in the rates of flow of hormones into the brain. Chromosome (Y) is responsible for the male hormones androgen, which are associated with what the psychologists call the “aggressive” tendency, meaning that type of behavior which is generally characterized by a direct and overt reaction, competitive acumen, and long-term evaluation and perception. The term implies, also some final and actual aggressive action which, unless well disciplined, would cause destructive consequences. As a matter of biological fact, such hormones in a male embryo rely on a hormone called “gonadal” which accounts for the behavioral differences between the two sexes and which is thought to influence the behavioral decisions issued by the brain.

In the female, sex hormones are responsible for the menstrual flow which is directly regulated by the key female hormones: estrogen and progesterone. Less secretion of these hormones causes menstruation usually accompanied by a state of discomfort, inhibition, and often gloomy attitudes. It is believed that the hormonal input in this case affects the functioning of the brain of the female, inhibiting or reviving her emotional state. Biologists emphasize the fact that the natural disposition in human is to a female system (X) unless broken by the male chromosome (Y) causing production of the male hormone: androgen.

Aggression – as previously defined – is the product of the testestrone hormone, androgen, a hormone that exists in the supra-renal glands of both sexes but, of course, in widely varied quantities. Aggression in women is mostly due to an overdose of this hormone, unless the woman is suffering from some societal trauma. A violently aggressive man is like- wise greatly motivated by an extra dose of androgen. If such a man is given estrogen, he would calm down in most cases and develop a new more docile behavior. In transsexuality, the individual who chooses to become a female undergoes surgical intervention and female hormone therapy without which femininity cannot take its usual course. Hormones, in such circumstances, are necessary to build up the breast, to stimulate sexual desires, to eliminate profuse facial and body hair, etc. Once the new female is given such hormonal treatment, her limbic system functions accordingly: The maternal instinct becomes greatly felt, the desire for talking more becomes more persistent, the feminine emotionality supersedes rationality, and the lachrymatal glands secrete more profuse tears during emotional stress. Nothing, perhaps, can be more convincing of the biological dichotomy than maternity. Weitz writes, “Animal evidence does support the concept of the maternal instinct, in that female sex hormones such as estrogen, progesterone and prolactin seem to be implicated in the ontogeny of maternal behavior.” The same author relates the experiment of the monkey-mother who killed its newly born babies when given androgen and the motherly monkey-father who cared for the babies after receiving female hormones. Nowhere in the animal kingdom do fathers assume the basic role of caring for the newly born offspring.

A female child is born with a maternal instinct: she distinctly feels a strong interest in children and this explains why girls prefer to play with dolls. It has been established that girls with an excess of prenatal androgen “do seem to show less interest in infants than normal girls,” and obviously more than normal boys. The maternity behavior is mainly characterized by tenderness, affective bonds, self-preservation, protectiveness, and self-identification with the child.

To conclude, one can safely say that, “Sexual behavior of an individual, and thus gender role, are not neutral and without initial direction at birth. Nevertheless, sexual predisposition is only a potentiality setting limits to a pattern that is greatly modifiable by ontogenetic experience.”

In other words, the ontogeny (i.e. the biological development of the individual organism) asserts that a female is born with a maternal instinct carrying genetic predispositions different from those of a male. It is of interest to note that there is differential treatment of children by parents according to their sex. Mothers are more inclined to tolerate boys and girls, while fathers are more tolerant towards girls than towards boys. This phenomenon prevails among humans and some primates and is quite conspicuous among monkeys.

SOCIALIZATION FACTORS

“Conspiracy theories of history, which seem to imply that men have kept women down over the centuries through some collective act of will, do not merit serious consideration.” There is no doubt that our physiological functioning is affected by our psychological and societal conditions and that biology, psychology and society have contributed to the present sex roles in their different grades and limits. It is rather impossible to separate the biological factor from the societal. Yet, one has to take into serious consideration that there is a definite predisposition in each sex that takes place in the embryo and the fetus. This prenatal conditioning cannot be due to any societal agent, but most probably can be a major cause of societal differential treatment of the sexes. When parents give a doll to their daughter, they are aware of her instinctive motherly feeling and they are responding to her instinctive desires. Instinctive urges can be mollified, re-oriented and mitigated, but never nullified or totally wiped out. To suppress such urges is to cause more harm than good to the individual and to ignore them is to push the child in a wrong way where he or she tries to fulfill the desires by any means, legitimate or illegitimate, socially acceptable or unacceptable.

Socialization agents, namely: the parents, the school, the peers and the social symbols of the sexes, are supposed to be, and in fact should be, factors of disciplining the instinctive behavior. Our basic sexual desires should be satisfied by marriage and not by adultery and fornication. Our instinctive need for security should be met by honorable work and lawful gain and not by theft and violence. Even our innate instinct implanted in the eukaryotes for evolving to the better must be encouraged through a proper education leading to a feeling of self-esteem and elation. Failing this, the individual would resort to unhealthy and even anti-social practices to feel the importance of his ego he or she may develop the bad habits of lying, boasting, or even killing. Any infringement upon instincts is a violation of a natural law of life that conduces to masochism, narcissism, schizophrenia and the rest of the psychotic ailments.

The family has a lasting effect on sex roles as most of the individual’s latent behavior is basically formulated in the first seven or eight years of childhood. The major role of parents relates to the child’s identification where affective bonds, mechanism of modeling and cognitive categorization should be carefully observed. Here the question generally raised by the “libs” is whether parents should or should not differentiate in their treatment between males and females. Many of them believe that they should not heed the sex and thus should treat both the boy and the girl as if they were of the same sex. They allege that any differentiation at this early stage leads to some category of inferiority complex in the girl and to a bias in favor of the boy. There is enough evidence in everyday life that supports such allegations. However, any fair mind can easily see that it is not the differentiation, per se, that causes such inhibition in the girl, if only because differentiation occurs in families which have girls and no boys. Every individual child is different from others and should accordingly be treated differently. What hurts a child is the way parents associate differentiation with sex. If a doll is given to a grid it is not because she is inferior to a boy who was presented with a horse or a gun. Girls would only suffer inhibition and inferiority if the parents treat them as inferior, or if when differentiating between both of them, parents explain the act in preferential language.

Another important factor in socialization is the school infants in nurseries, children in kindergarten and boys and girls in higher age brackets are treated differently in one way or another, in accordance with their sex. In pictures for the very young, in all books and prints, there is always a “he” and a “she.” He is tough, daring, exterior-oriented, and somehow aggressive, while she is kind, caring, child-loving, interior oriented, and somehow self preservative. Then, there are the great differentiation in students’ activities: the boys compete in physically rough and hard sports, participate in political and social discussions, and are expected to excel girls in empirical sciences. On the other hand, girls practice dancing and singing, fight and non-violent sports, domestic arts, and are expected to excel boys in artistic sciences.

Here again differentiation is undeniably conspicuous and while it is in essence compatible with human biology, it is condemned by the “libs.” Their plea is always the same: such treatment leads to the development of a feeling of inferiority in the female. It indoctrinates the subconscious mind of the girl with a view to convince her of the conspired falsehood, i.e., the superiority of the male. The “libs” believe that keeping the “traditional roles” of sexes in the school gives an edge to the boy over the girl: he is depicted as the hero, the protector, the leader and even the mastery. This seems to be an exaggeration which has its roots in feminine emotion. In many cases, the slave-mind prevails over the “libs” and is manifested in irrational and perverted behavior.

The staunchest proponent of liberalism cannot deny that the male is created with more muscular strength, that biologically speaking, he is more “aggressive ‘” that his mind is more outwardly inclined, and that he is more free from physiological cyclical effects. The female is created with other exceliencies anti-distinctions by virtue of her constitution. Her motherhood instincts, her feminine tenderness and her physiologically receptive aptitude for procreation. These clear facts should induce us to accept, at least, such differentiation that confirm anti correspond with the distinct natural characteristics of each sex. It follows that there must be differentiation in all schools to respond to these basic biological divergent requirements.

The so-called peer group effects and the symbolic agents of sex roles are very akin to each other, especially among adults. Clubs of men and women, the distinction in public behavior and the discriminatory treatment of the sexes in many public and social functions do exist in all present societies. One has to admit that some of this differentiation is due to societal factors and/or obsolete inherited tradition. But one cannot also deny that there are genuine irrefutable reasons for differentiation in this field. Despite the equal opportunities open to both sexes in education and public life, women have been active in fields that do not require much “aggressiveness,” and where there is a concurrence of biological effect and societal functioning. In such activities there is no reason whatsoever for a woman not to succeed and even excel any man.

SOCIALIZATION VERSUS BIOLOGY

There is evidence that socialization factors, when carried out extensively at an early age, affect the biological functioning of the child. That is how we notice the ‘sissy’ boy and the ‘tomboyish’ girl. Also, oversecretion of female hormones in a male would produce the same effect, despite any socialization effort to the contrary. In both cases, the situation becomes unhealthy and the individual suffers from some perversion and could develop trans-sexualism. The correct attitude is obvious: we have to adapt our socialization processes in such a manner that they correspond to our biological functioning. The indelible male and female characteristics installed in our limbic systems as a result of the prenatal hormonal secretions must be the basis of our socialization process. There must be harmony between the act of creation (natural state) and the willful human action. Failing this, a grave imbalance takes place, shaking the personality of the individual to its very roots. Thus, the “libs” claim for identical treatment of males and females in every domain denies the biological constitution of the human mind and body and nullifies masculinity and femininity. Homosexuality, which at present is assuming some prominence in industrialized Western societies, is the product of lopsided thinking and is bound to fail. It is a revolt against the law of creation and will not be allowed to prevail, whatever price humanity may pay for it.

A female must be brought up in a manner that makes her feel proud of her femininity and not ashamed of it. She must be treated with equity but she must not be equated to the male. They are different and can never be equals, as each of them has a domain predestined from his or her conception.

STRUCTURE AND FUNCTION OF THE FAMILY

We have seen that there is no continuity of life without marriage-a union between male and female -a nd that life is order. Death is entropy or disorder. In Cadmure’s words: “Life is mainly to reproduce and to feel.” The marriage of cells which constitute our body, brain, and nerves is a highly organized “institution” administered by sophisticated laws and geared by strict discipline. Humans are no more than their cells, and the rule of order and discipline is the essence of their existence. Any violation of this rule is a step towards entropy or self-destruction.

As we live, we reproduce – we marry. Humans learn to live in heterogeneous couples and reproduce within a certain orderly social framework called the “family institution.” The word “social” here is not a mere fabrication by man. It is necessarily biological in the sense that one human cell cannot alienate itself from other similar cells. Whenever a group of cells (families) comes together, the necessity for order and discipline becomes incumbent. Hence those who believe that there should be-or even could be-a society of human cells (families) without rules administering the relationships between its individuals, are asking for the impossible, the anti-natural. Such a chaotic grouping does not exist in nature.

Oparin, a Russian biologist, proved that if a collection of molecules (he calls them coacervates) is given a chance to act, they have order. He set a chemical reaction in the solution where these coacervates were floating and found that they formed an inexplicable and unpredicted order: heads outward and tails inward. There was a mystifying difference between the rate of reaction outside and inside the coacervates. According to Oparin, “This difference accounts for the formation of the cell.”

Sociologically speaking, a family is operationally defined as “…a special kind of structure whose principals are related to one another through blood ties and/or marital relationships, and whose relatedness is of such a nature as to entail ‘mutual expectations’ that are prescribed by religion, reinforced by law, and internalized by the individual.” This definition takes into account the general aspect of any family and the Islamic point of view. Dr. Abd al-Ati, accordingly specifies the purposes of marriage as:

-a means of emotional and sexual gratification,
-a mechanism of tension reduction,
-a means of legitimate procreation,
-social placement,
-an approach to inter-family alliance and group solidarity, and
-above all, an act of piety.

Both above definitions and purposes are quite elaborate and comprise many views about the functions of the family. Nevertheless, there is the intricate cause and effect relationship between the family and society.

The culture of any society comprises many traditions installed in its individuals’ minds and which are passed on from one generation to another. As man is conservative by instinct, he does not try to change such traditions except under the great pressure of evolutionary requirements. This perpetual struggle between the two instincts: conservatism and evolution plays an important role in delimiting the functions of the family institution in every society. Both instincts are dynamic and must be kept in good balance for any sane society to develop. Traditions constitute a part of the established ideology of a people, whilst evolution is the active element that steers the present status towards a future one, and as such, it formulates another part of the ideology. Amidst this continuous process the family exists, caught between the two parts. The family is there to conserve what is best and most appropriate in tradition, and to adopt and practice what is best and most appropriate in the new evolution.

To apply the above philosophy, functions, and definitions to the Muslim family in the States, we come immediately to a host of variegated and intertwined problems. Islam is integral and Muslims are supposed to adopt it in its entirety. “Believe ye in part of the Scripture and disbelieve ye in part thereof? And what is the reward of those who do so save ignominy in the life of this world, and on the Day of Resurrection they will be consigned to the most grievous doom.” (2:85)

Accordingly, they are required to apply Islamic laws concerning all matrimonial matters. Yet, being residents in a non-Muslim country which does not follow the Islamic Shariah, they are bound to meet with a complex of contradictory situations. Such complication is exacerbated by the lack of consolidated Muslim communities and the absence of any Islamic order that could help solve their problems.

To start with, there is the problem of the marriage contract. Muslims who intend to live here for a protracted length of time or forever are obliged to register their marriage in accordance with the laws of the state in which they wed. Once this is done, the rights and obligations of both spouses are defined by what these laws stipulate and not by Islamic injunctions. This applies, in fact, to all subsequent familial issues. The husband’s financial obligation towards his wife and household, the wife’s duties towards her husband and household, and the social code which should be observed by both-all these important issues become subject to local American jurisprudence. In case of divorce, it is again the state laws that adjudge the final separation act irrespective of the Islamic injunctions.

Another important issue that affects the Muslim family in the States is the economic status. In many cases, both spouses are obliged to work and gain more income to make ends meet and to save something as a security for the future. This economic aspect is very common to most American families and is taken for granted by them, with its good and bad effects. It does not constitute a major problem to them as it is consistent with their material civilization and ideology. Westerners have developed a certain philosophy of life in regard to the status of women as a result of their past heritage and present industrialized societies. It is common knowledge that Athenians treated women as a commodity which could be bought and sold. The Romans considered women to be the property of the father and/or the husband until the days of Justinian (5th century) when some separate identity of women was legally acknowledged. Judaism looks down upon women as a curse worse than death and considers them essentially evil. The Christian views on women varied from considering them to be living beings without souls to humans without identity. The British law until 1801 allowed the husband to sell his wife. The list of historical abuses of women in the West is too long to be enumerated in this paper.

It is only very recently that non-Muslim societies agreed to give women some independent status. Even today, the renowned liberal American wife cannot buy property without the consent of her husband nor is she allowed to stick to her maiden name without adding that of her husbands. In Switzerland, she cannot enter into any contractual transaction without her husband’s written consent, and if she earns any money from her work, he is legally entitled to half her income. All over the West, the husband can deprive his wife of his legacy after death.

No wonder, then, we hear women claiming “equality” with man and justice in treatment. The present culture, predominantly influenced by the economic or materialistic agent, gave justice, equality and liberation a material implications pecuniary value. In their industrial age where money is power, where rich is good and poor is bad, where dog eat dog are accepted premises of individuals’ interrelations, and where moral values have been dumped into the garbage bin, women are contending for economic independence as a basis for their claim for equal human rights.

To achieve this end, they did not mind the commercialization of their femininity, the loss of their chastity, the destruction of their family and the perturbation of their emotions. This yearning for liberation pushed the Western woman into deep waters. Her desire for independence dragged her into competition and aggression, and her pride alienated her from the affectionate society. In her solitude, she accepted permissiveness and along with her struggle for survival, she nurtured bitterness and rancor. In the midst of her secular preoccupation, she suppressed her spiritual values and trod on her motherly instincts.

The American concept of family and marriage has undergone radical change in the last few decades. Originally, as Edward Westermack puts it, “Marriage is rooted in the family and not the family in marriage.” The family in turn was the foundation of society. Hence, the regulation of all family relations was considered a necessity called for by two fundamental exigencies: wholesome human procreation and preservation of society.

The modern industrial culture upset the past norm of family life and greatly changed the purposes of marriage. New opportunities of material gain were opened to married and unmarried. Women making them eco- nomically independent from their husbands and male providers. The women’s emancipation movement accordingly declared that there was no more reason for tolerating subjugation to the male and cultivated the eccentric tendencies against the traditional functioning and sex-roles in the family. “The woman’s new freedom has greatly increased sexual opportunity outside marriage, supported by contraception and abortion.” The main purpose of marriage has become to satiate the desires of the couple, or what the libs call to achieve individual fulfillment and to ascertain the spouse’s identity. The new concept has become tantamount to fulfilling the “desire of each other’s need for individual happiness” and “the development of man-woman relationship.” This, according to them, would lead to giving the wife the same status as the husband without differentiation or discrimination. Thus, a new concept of marriage rooted in the family had to be developed, and four substitutes are being practiced in modem societies:

1. Serial monogamy, where a series of marriages take place one after the other. This is what prevails in the United States at present where divorce occurs in 40% of marriages and where 75% of the divorced remarry. There are some modernists who suggest the “bypass of divorce by requiring renewal or cancellation of all marriage contracts at three year intervals.”

2. Open marriage, where the exclusivity of husband-wife (sexually and otherwise) is eliminated. Those who advocate this category of marriage practice “wife swapping” or “swinging.” They claim that extramarital experiences would reduce jealousy, relieve tensions and ease the pressures of personal conflict.

3. Polygamy and group marriage, where an association of husbands and wives and their children mix together without restriction or constraint. The claim here is that multiplicity of parenthood for adults and children would offer a wider variety of interactive experiences in meeting individual needs.

4. Homosexuality, where women “marry” women and men “marry” men without the usual conflict which is inevitable in every new normal marriage.

All such approaches can never succeed in creating a happy family because they ignore the biological and the spiritual elements. Humans cannot survive without a society and no society can survive without the family. As individuals, “to live is to love and to love is to live,” as Havelock Ellis puts it. Serial monogamy, open marriage, group marriage and homosexuality lack the premodial basics of the family. Humans are the only species where the offspring needs parental catering for a relatively long period after birth, not only physically but emotionally as well.

The new frustrated efforts, as reflected in the modern abnormal family life do not unite man and woman in a bond where both enjoy material and emotional security, stability and contentment. They do not cure the ailments created by the prevailing technological culture: alienation, loneliness, anomie, lack of love, and anxiety. “Search any average human being and you soon find evidence of heart-hunger for closeness and intimacy and the shared life as the only dependable sources of a sustained sense of self-esteem and of personal worth.”

The women’s emancipation movement in this country is revolting against long-standing inequitable treatment, against a biased, unjust legal system and a domineering economic exploitation. In their revolt, and in the absence of any effective religious or moral guidance, women have gone to the extreme which has brought down on them the misery of “civilized prostitution and adultery.”

Such are the circumstances of the culture under which a Muslim family lives in this country. It would be a gross mistake to assume that Muslims will not be affected by the American way of life, the American materialistic values and American laws. Hence, the complex of problems of Muslim families start. If we add to the above anomalies the problems arising from the educational systems and its repercussions on the youngsters and adults, we could better understand the vast dimension of the Muslim dilemma. An example of this confusion is the so-to-speak highly educated Muslim wife who believes that it is her legitimate right to invite any male friend into the home, even in the absence of her husband, to accept an invitation in another city or another country without his permission, or the right to choose hard work in a locality other than where he lives. It is not a rare case to come across a Muslim woman who believes that she has the right to work as she has spent long years qualifying herself in a certain profession. In most cases, she would be motivated by her desire to material gain, especially when she can have some fulfillment out of the social activities in her professional domain. Such wives are deeply influenced by the American materialistic mentality and would claim the best of two worlds: to keep her job and to claim her Islamic right to be sustained by her husband.

The problems of children born in Muslim families are well known to all and have been repeatedly discussed by Muslim sociologists and thinkers in numerous conventions and symposia. They revolve on the cold fact that the American environment and culture affect the Muslim child’s mentality and code of ethical values. When both parents are working, the child does not get enough care and domestic orientation to protect him against anti-Islamic practices. More serious a menace is the loss of the child’s Islamic identity and his relatedness to a Muslim community. But these children’s problems are mainly derived from the principal family problems which, if solved, would automatically bring relief to the chil- dren’s ordeal.

THE ISLAMIC SOLUTION- BIOLOGY AND SOCIALIZATION

There is nothing more compatible with human nature than Islamic teachings and injunctions, if only because they take the individual as a fallible being, subject to trial and error and subject to correction and evolution. “On no soul does Allah place a burden greater than it can bear.” (2:286)

It gets every good that it earns, and it suffers every ill that it earns. As we are concerned here with the Muslim family, it is natural that whatever solution we may suggest, it must be in accordance with Islam. Luckily enough, Islam decides upon every issue, taking human nature in consideration and exhorting us to abide by the eternal laws of creation.
Empirical sciences have discovered many facts concerning our biological structure and physiological functioning, but there are still many more of life’s secrets to be uncovered. There is not one single established scientific fact that runs contrary to any Islamic injunction; but there are many postulates, ideas and theories that may be incompatible with Islamic teachings. Under such uncertain conditions, the Muslim is supposed to follow the Islamic rules irrespective of the scientific dubious points of view and his personal desires.

Regarding the traditions and cultures that affect our socialization, we must bear in mind that these are the product of certain practiced ideals and established ideas prevailing at one time in a certain society. This is an extremely important element in the Islamic syndrome of solutions to societal problems. Islam is a philosophy that defines the purpose of human life, the relation between man, nature, and the Creator. It is a doctrine that sets up the broad outlines of the social, political, economic and esthetic systems which should be applied in our daily transactions and intercourse. Such philosophical definitions and doctrinal delineations are confined to the basic facts which do not evolve or change in accordance with the continuous human evolution. Facts are absolute and are not subject to change, otherwise they are neither facts nor absolute.

Whatever solutions we find in Islam, they are based on such absolute facts whether known to our contemporary scientists or unknown to them. The entire concept of the family and roles of its members is a part of the general concept of the Islamic society. Let us bear in mind that marriage is dictated by our biological needs and is a part of the indispensable human society and not just a matter of individual option. “And of everything we have created pairs.” (51:49).

The word ‘zawj’ is used in the Quran as meaning a pair or a mate. Both words connote marriage. “Do they not look at the earth, how many pairs of noble things we have produced therein?” (31:10). Even in Paradise, the Quran informs us that we shall have mates (see 2:25, 4:57). Allah created humans from one soul, which could be the first cell. From this soul He created the male and the female. The story of creating Eve (the first female) from a rib of Adam (the first male) is not mentioned in the Quran. “And among His signs is this, that He created for you mates from yourselves that ye may find rest (and peace) in them.” (30:2 1). “O mankind, heed (in reverence) your Lord Who created you from a single soul, and from it created its mate, and from them both spread a multitude of men and women.” (4:1).

Our Prophet orders us to get married as soon as we can. The family is the nucleus of the Islamic society and marriage is the only way to bring about such an institution. Extra-marital relations are categorically condemned and prohibited. “Nor come nigh to adultery (or fornication) for it is a shameful deed and an evil, opening the road to other evils.” (17:30).

It is only logical that Islam set up the rules to regulate the functioning of the family whereby both spouses can find peace, love, security and relatedness. The elements are necessary to accomplish the greatest purpose of marriage: the worship of Allah. By worship it is not only meant the performance of rituals, but it essentially implies righteousness in all transactional behavior. Every good deed, every service to humanity, every useful productive effort, and even every good word are a part of a true Muslim worship of his Allah. If both husband and wife observe this main purpose, this cardinal purpose of their union, they would easily learn how to help each other achieve this goal which is greater than themselves. They would learn how to tolerate each other, how to love Allah in themselves and in other beings, and how to overcome their difficulties and their shortcomings.

The second purpose of marriage is to respond to the basic biological instinct of procreation. Children are the realization of motherhood and fatherhood. Islam is particular in providing the most possible wholesome atmosphere for bringing up the offspring. To give birth to children and neglect them is a crime towards society, the children, and the parents themselves. The child who is deprived of the ample love of his or her parents, who is not properly tutored at an early age, and who is left to babysitters and nurseries will develop many anti-social behavioral patterns and may end up with crime, perversion and corruption. Such a child may never find his or her identity as he or she could have felt it in a systematic manner during his or her childhood. Without a family life, governed by Islamic order and discipline, how can we expect a child to have the Muslim conscience and the Islamic value of righteousness.

Islam prescribes clear rights and obligations on parents and their descendent Parents are legally responsible for the education and maintenance of their children. These, by turn, are legally responsible for accommodating and maintaining their parents, if they so require, in their old age. Both parents and children inherit from each other according to a prescribed and accurate law of inheritance specified in the Quran. Neither of them can deprive the other of their respective shares in the legacy. This is only part of the long family code in Islam. What is of import here is the husband-wife relationship-their sex roles-within the context of Islamic comprehension: “And among His Signs is this, that He created for you mates from among yourselves, that you may find rest (and peace) in them. And He has put love and mercy between your (hearts); Verily in this are signs for those who reflect.” (30:21).

Despite the importance of these moral values: rest, peace, love and mercy, Islam did not stop there. It bolstered its original concept of the family by defining the roles of man and woman in such a manner that each should act in accordance with his or her biological merits. The man, with his aggression, is charged with what is called the instrumental functions: maintenance, protection, dealings with the outworldly matters and leadership within the family. The woman is entrusted with caring for and rearing the children, organizing the home, and creating the loving atmosphere inside. Let us be clear from the beginning that in an Islamic society the wife is not expected to be pushed to work to gain money. Even the unmarried, the divorcee, and the widow are guaranteed, by law, an income that helps them lead a reasonably comfortable life. Work or trade are not prohibited to women. Yet, they are not recommended to undertake such activities unless there is a justification for them and without prejudice to their husband’s rights. Once the woman gets married, she accepts the Islamic ruling on the functioning of the family. Her role becomes mainly to achieve the welfare of her household and to look after the internal family affairs. If she wants to work, she is bound to ask the explicit approval of her husband. However, if she has her own property or fortune, and if she opts to run or invest such wealth, she is entitled to do so without her husband’s permission, but provided this does not infringe upon her marital obligations.

THE ISLAMIC FAMILY

In Islam, as in biology, there is no family without marriage, and there is no marriage without rules and discipline. The family in Islam is a unit in which two independent persons unite and share life together. The husband’s dignity is an integral part of his wife’s dignity. Accordingly, neither of them is better than the other. To unite and share, there must be mutual love and compassion-a genuine feeling which unless translated into action and behavior would be mere illusion and futile emotion. One can hardly accept the claim of love of the spouse who does not care for his or her sick partner or who does not share the family responsibilities.

This fundamental basis, if well understood and observed, makes the first loyalty of both spouses to their family which is supposed to serve Allah in piety as the main purpose of marriage. It implies that they act as if they were one person with many organs. The head of the human is not better than the heart, and the hand is not better than the foot. If the man is charged with the duty of leadership and maintenance, he is not better than the woman who is assigned the duty of keeping the household, even if the first duty is more difficult and perhaps more significant. Imam Muhammad Abduh emphasizes this point as vital for the right understanding of the sex roles of spouses. He adds that the Quranic verse, “And in no wise covet those things in which Allah hath bestowed His gifts more freely on some of you than on others; to men is allotted what they earn, and to women what they earn” (4:32) does not imply that every man is better than every woman or vice versa. According to him, each sex, in general, has some preferential advantage over the other, though men have a degree over women.

There has been much controversy about this ‘degree’. Some interpret it as the delegation of leadership, surveillance and maintenance which are bestowed on men. Others say that it is the tolerance with which men must treat their wives. A third view is that it is men’s natural gift for judging matters and managing external problems. However, the consensus is that this ‘degree’ comprises the principle of ‘guardianship’ or ‘qiwamah’.

Imam Abduh in the course of interpreting the preceding Quranic verse, stated that qiwamah or guardianship has four elements: protection, surveillance, custody and maintenance. Dr. Abd al-Ati considered the element of obedience over and above the aforementioned four elements- the most important indication of qiwamah. Obedience, to him, and in accordance to the Quran and Traditions comprises the following:

1. She must not receive male, strangers or accept gifts from them without his permission. Nor must she lend or dispose of any of his possessions without his approval,

2. The husband has the legal right to restrict her freedom of movement and prevent her from leaving her home without his permission. She must comply with this right unless there is a necessity or legitimate advantage for her to do otherwise. However, it is his religious obligation to be compassionate so as to relax his right to restrict her freedom of movement. If there arises a conflict between this right of his and wife’s parents’ right to visit and be visited by their daughter, his right prevails.
Yet it is religiously recommended that he be considerate enough to waive his right and avoid estrangement within his conjugal family or between any member of this family and close relatives, e.g. the wife’s parents.

3. A refractory wife has no legal right to object to the husband’s exercise of his disciplining authority. Islamic law, in common with most other systems of law, recognizes the husband’s right to discipline his wife for disobedience.

4. The wife may not legally object to the husband’s right to take another wife or to exercise his right of divorce. The marital contract establishes her implicit consent to these rights. However, if she wishes to restrict his freedom in this regard or to have similar rights, she is legally allowed to do so. She may stipulate in the marital agreement that she too, will have the right to divorce, or that she will keep the marriage bond only so long as she remains the only wife; should he take a second wife, the first will have the right to seek a divorce in accordance with the marriage agreement.

5. Finally, if the husband insists on patrilocality or neolocality, the wife Must Comply.”

CONCLUSION

The problems facing Muslim families living in the States can be dealt with in compliance with Islamic teachings and principles once we accept them as binding. If the spouses are really devout, they will have no difficulty in encountering the evils of the Western culture and in escaping the anti-Islamic societal factors that may run contrary to Islam. The guidelines as we see them would be:

1. The main purpose of marriage is to live in piety and to serve the Islamic Cause. The wife has the right to discontinue working whenever she pleases. The husband may allow the wife to work with the condition that her gain belongs to the family and not be considered as her personal property.

2. Household: When the wife is not employed, the household becomes her first occupation. By household it is meant the rearing of the children and all domestic services required for maintaining a clean and comfortable habitation. The Prophet (PBUH) said, “Cleanliness is a part of faith.” Motherhood is highly appraised in Islam and is the most elated value second to the worship of Allah.

MARRIAGE, DISPUTES AND DIVORCE

Marriage: Muslims should marry according to Islamic traditions and rules. The marriage will have to be registered with the State in which they wed in order to give it a legal force. This legal procedure subjects the marriage contract to the jurisdiction of American laws which, in most cases, contradict many Islamic rulings. However, such contradiction does not happen unless there is a dispute that both spouses fail to solve in accordance with the Shariah.

Disputes: These are expected to arise in all matrimonial relations. Muslim abiding spouses must learn how to compromise and tolerate each other. Their guide is the teaching of their religion and their good example is their Prophet. However, in case they fail to solve their own problems, they have to resort to arbitration. The spouse who refuses this Quranic injunction or who defies the other partner taking shelter under the umbrella of American laws is failing in his or her religious commitment. The Quranic arbitration is meant to be binding on both spouses and would, indeed, relieve the Muslim family of most of its problems.

Divorce: If one to the spouses refuses arbitration, non-Islamic divorce is bound to take place, leaving a deep painful scar on both of them. Arbitration may end in divorce, but in this case it would be least harmful as both would feel more content when Shariah is justly applied.

It is a pity that many recalcitrant (nashiz) Muslim women think that American law would serve their interest more than the Islamic Law. This is not only wrong but the consequences of litigation generally leaves more ill feeling than should be.

ENVIRONMENT AND CHILDREN

Nobody can deny the impact of environment upon adults and children. Up until now, one can safely say that Muslims of America could not constitute any physical or moral community comparable to that of the Jews or the Chinese. Granted that there are some groupings in scattered localities and spiritual guidance from different sources, yet there is no community that could respond to many basic needs. The family must live in a society, and unless an Islamic community is created, the Muslim family will have no alternative but to merge in a non-Muslim one.

The danger is so imminent that it forms the major part of the family problems in the United States. Both adults and children are influenced by American values and traditions, and by American behavior and manners. There is no escape from this “assimilation” except by strengthening the family bonds and by steadfast observation of Islamic teachings. The husband must lead here by strict adherence to Islamic ways of life and by requiring the same from his wife.

Such are the sex-roles in Islam and the main problems facing Muslim families in the United States and, indeed, in all non-Muslim countries. The solutions mentioned above entirely depend upon the faith of the spouses and their earnest desire to live up to their religion. Allah, according to the Holy Quran, has made men in charge of their wives, has ordered them to maintain and protect them and has ordered women to obey their husbands and guard their secrets (see 4:34, 35). As for those spouses who claim the right to twist the meanings of Quranic texts so as to suit their personal desires, and those who try to subject Islam to non-Islamic laws are sick in their hearts and are transgressors. Most probably, such persons would not like to read this essay, though we pray to Allah to guide them to the right way: “Say: This is my Way: I call on Allah with sure knowledge and (so does) whosoever follows me – glory be to Allah! and I am not of the idolaters” (12:108).

NOTES
1. L. Cadmure and L. Larson, “The Center of Life,” The New York
Times Book Co., 1977, p. 8.
2. Ibid., p. 9.
3. Ibid., p. 28.
4. Ibid., p. 38.
5. 1. R. Symthies, “Brain Mechanisms and Behavior.” New York:
Academic Press, 1970, p. 156.
6. Shirley Weitz, “Sex Roles.” New York: Oxford University Press,
1977, p. 7.
7. K. E. Moyer, “Sex Difference in Aggression.” Quoted in R. C.
Friedman, R. M. Richart, R. L. Vande Wiele, eds., “Sex Differences in
Behavior,” Wile, 1974, p. 156.
8. Weitz, op. cit., p. 42.
9. D. B. Lynn, “The Father: His Role in Child Development,”
Monterey, CA: Brooks Cole, 1974, pp. 14-21.
10. Weitz, op. cit., p. 42.
1 1. M. A. Diamond, “A Critical Evaluation of the Ontogeny of
Human Sexual Behavior,” Quarterly Review of Biology, 50 (1965), pp.
147-175.
12. Weitz, op. cit., p. 5.
13. Cadmure, op. cit., p. 8.
14. Ibid., p. 39.
15. Hammudah Abd al-Ati, “The Family Structure in Islam.” Indiana:
American Trust Publications, 1977, p. 19.
16. Ibid., pp. 54-55.
17. Lately a few states have allowed married women to use their
maiden names.
18. R. H. Williams (ed). To Live and To Die. “Marriage: Whence and
Whither,” NY- Springer-Verlad, 1973, p. 298.
19. Ibid., p. 299.
20. Ibid., p. 304.
21. Tafsir al-Manar, vol. 5, p. 68 ff.
22. Abd al-Ati, op. cit., pp. 172-173. These rights and obligations are
corroborated by the Quran and Hadith.

Causes (of Marital Discord) That Can Be Traced Back to the Husband Himself or His Friends

Marital Discord (al-Nushooz):
Its Definition, Cases, Causes, Means of Protection From It, and Its Remedy From the Quran and Sunnah

By Dr. Saalih ibn Ghaanim al-Sadlaan
(Translated by Jamaal al-Din M. Zarabozo)
© S. Al-Sadlaan and J. Zarabozo

The husband himself may be the cause of the woman’s disobedience and rebelliousness. For example, he may be very stingy and miserly. He may also be very emotional and excitable. He may also be someone who is very harsh, tough and despotic. He may be one who forces his will and decisions upon his wife in every matter without consulting with her, taking into consideration her feelings, exchanging views on the matter and being pleasant with this wife. He might consider his wife like some kind of chattel (instead of another human) and therefore deals with her with coldness and coarseness without any compassion or gentleness. (Translator’s Footnote: A disease that seems to afflict many men in their ability to be very kind and brotherly to their brothers but extremely cold and harsh towards their own wives. Obviously, their wives have more rights upon them than any of their brothers in Islam. This mistaken behavior must be corrected.)

The cause for that may also be in his evil friends who sow discontent and evil between a man and his wife by leading him and pushing him to disliking and hating his wife and wishing to be free from her.

“(In fact,) (his extreme good nature beyond normal limits) may also lead to his wife to change her disposition and make her try to override him and then disobey his commands and elevate herself above him.” (Majallah al-Jundi al-Muslim, p. 29, fn.1.)

“He may cause his wife different forms of harm, such as cursing her or her family, reviling her, verbally abusing her for the tiniest of reasons. He may insult her because of her family, if it is less prestigious or honorable than his. Or (another act of nushooz on his part is that) he may try to bring harm to her by divorcing her and then, before the waiting period is finished, bring her back as his wife and then divorce her again. All this is done without the intention of returning to a real married life but simply to harm her and transgress her rights. Or he may avoid having sexual intercourse with her for no reason or legal sanction. This may lead the woman to lose her chastity and doing something forbidden.” (Al-Bahuti al-Hanbali, Kishaaf al-Qinaa'; an Matn al-Iqnaa';, vol. 5, pp. 184, 290, 213; Ibn Abideen, Radd al-Mukhtar ala al-Darr al-Mukhtar wa Hashiyah, vol. 3, p. 190; Tafseer al-Manaar, vol. 5, p. 76.)

Shaikh al-Islam ibn Taimiya stated, “The harm that comes about to the woman by the man avoiding sexual intercourse with her is such that the marriage may be dissolved under every circumstance, regardless if it was intentional from the husband or unintentional, or if he had the ability to perform sexual intercourse or not.” (Ibn Taimiyah, al-Fatawa al-Kubra, vol. 4, p. 562; Ibn Taimiyah, Majmuah al-Fatawa, vol. 32, p. 40.)

(Nushooz on the part of the husband includes) when he orders her to do something forbidden or illegal, such as going out in public displaying her beauty or uncovering parts of her that must be covered, to go among men she is not related to, to drink alcohol or take drugs, go to clubs and salons wherein bad things are taking place.

Also from nushooz on the part of the husband is his not fulfilling his marital obligations. For example, he makes life difficult for her with respect to her food, drink, clothing and so forth. (Translator’s footnote: This is one of the biggest marital problems that one can see occurring in the West. Many times, the husbands simply do not support their wives and families. Although they have the physical and other means to work and support their families, they would resort to putting themselves and their families on the welfare system. Often times, the husbands will give the flimsiest excuses for not accepting work and therefore put families in such situations. Many times, the husband would rather force his wife to go out and work; which, in the West, almost always involves putting the Muslim woman into situations that she should not be put into; rather than he accept a job that he is not completely pleased with. Hence, their families do not achieve the economic well-being that they deserve and, often, the wife loses respect for the husband as he is not performing one of his most important obligations of married life: providing maintenance for his wife and family. Sooner or later this often leads to many other problems within the marriage, although the root of those problems is the husband’s unwillingness to work and sustain the family.) Or he makes her live in a residence that is not something suitable for her.

(In addition, included among the acts of nushooz) is his unfair distribution of his time or where he stays (when he is married to more than one wife) without legal justification. Or, he may not fulfil the needs of his wife and children such that their well-being is not met. Or, he does things that hurt and dishonor his wife and show lack of respect for her, such as backbiting her, slandering her or joking about her. Or, he may be desirous of her wealth and forces her to spend it on his behalf.

(The following are also acts that constitute nushooz on the part of the husband:) having anal intercourse with her, which is forbidden and is never permissible, his travelling for fun, amusement and entertainment without taking her permission as he is thereby wasting ample wealth for a useless purpose, while that wealth is meant to sustain the rights of his household.

If the man apostates from Islam, and refuge is sought in Allah, that is considered nushooz and the marriage contract is dissolved unless he returns to Islam. (See al-Khalafaat al-Zaujiyah, p. 39.)

There are many other causes or acts of nushooz that we have not mentioned here in order not to overly lengthen the discussion.


Reprinted from http://www.islaam.com

Wife Beating?

By Dr. Jamal Badawi

 

In the event of a family dispute, the Qur’an exhorts the husband to treat his wife kindly and not overlook her POSITIVE ASPECTS (see Qur’an 4:19). If the problem relates to the wife’s behavior, her husband may exhort her and appeal for reason. In most cases, this measure is likely to be sufficient. In cases where the problem continues, the husband may express his displeasure in another peaceful manner, by sleeping in a separate bed from hers. There are cases, however, in which a wife persists in deliberate mistreatment and expresses contempt of her husband and disregard for her marital obligations. Instead of divorce, the husband may resort to another measure that may save the marriage, at least in some cases. Such a measure is more accurately described as a gentle tap on the body, but NEVER ON THE FACE, making it more of a symbolic measure then a punitive one. Following is the related Qur’anic text:

Men are the protectors and maintainers of women. because Allah has given the one more (strength) than the other, and because they support them from their means. Therefore the righteous women are devoutly obedient, and guard in (the husband’s) absence what Allah would have them guard. As to those women on whose part you fear disloyalty and ill-conduct, admonish them (first), (next) do not share their beds, (and last) beat (tap) them (lightly); but if they return to obedience, seek not against them means (of annoyance): for Allah is Most High, Great (above you all). (4:34)

Even here, that maximum measure is limited by the following:

a. It must be seen as A RARE EXCEPTION TO THE REPEATED EXHORTATION OF MUTUAL RESPECT, KINDNESS AND GOOD TREATMENT, discussed earlier. Based on the Qur’an and hadith this measure may be used in the cases of lewdness on the part of the wife or extreme refraction and rejection of the husband’s reasonable requests on a consistent basis (nushuz). Even then, other measures, such as exhortation, should be tried first.

b. As defined by hadith, it is NOT PERMISSIBLE TO STRIKE ANYONE’S FACE, CAUSE ANY BODILY HARM OR EVEN BE HARSH. What the hadith qualified as dharban ghayra mubarrih, or light striking, was interpreted by early jurists as a (symbolic) use of miswak (a small natural toothbrush)! They further qualified permissible “striking” as that which leaves no mark on the body. It is interesting that this latter fourteen-centuries-old qualifier is the criterion used in contemporary American law to separate a light and harmless tap or strike from “abuse” in the legal sense. This makes it clear that even this extreme, last resort, and “lesser of the two evils” measure that may save a marriage does not meet the definitions of “physical abuse,” “family violence, ” or “wife battering” in the 20th century law in liberal democracies, where such extremes are so commonplace that they are seen as national concerns.

c. The permissibility of such symbolic expression of the seriousness of continued refraction DOES NOT IMPLY ITS DESIRABILITY. In several ahadith, Prophet Muhammad (P) discouraged this measure. Among his sayings are the following: “Do not beat the female servants of Allah;” “Some (women) visited my family complaining about their husbands (beating them). These (husbands) are not the best of you;” and”[It is not a shame that] one of you beats his wife like [an unscrupulous person] beats a slave and maybe he sleeps with her at the end of the day.” (See Riyadh Al-Saliheen, op.cit,p.p. 137-140). In another hadith the Prophet(P) said

…How does anyone of you beat his wife as he beats the stallion camel and then he may embrace (sleep with) her?… (Sahih Al-Bukhari,op.cit., vol.8.hadith 68,pp.42-43).

d. True following of the sunnah is to follow the example of the Prophet Muhammad (P), who NEVER RESORTED TO THAT MEASURE, regardless of the circumstances.

e. Islamic teachings are universal in nature. They respond to the needs and circumstances of diverse times, cultures and circumstances. Some measures may work in some cases and cultures or with certain persons but may not be effective in others. by definition, a “permissible” act is neither required, encouraged or forbidden. In fact it may be BETTER TO SPELL OUT THE EXTENT of permissibility, such as in the issue at hand, rather than leaving it unrestricted and unqualified, or ignoring it all together. In the absence of strict qualifiers, persons may interpret the matter in their own way, which can lead to excesses and real abuse.

f. Any excess, cruelty, family violence, or abuse committed by any “Muslim” can never be traced, honestly, to any revelatory text (Qur’an or hadith). Such EXCESSES AND VIOLATIONS ARE TO BE BLAMED ON THE PERSON(S) HIMSELF, as it shows that they are paying lip service to Islamic teachings and injunctions and failing to follow the true Sunnah of the Prophet (P).

 

Marriage: Lack of Faith or Lack of Focus?

By Hwaa Irfan
March 3, 2001
The Holy Prophet (SAW) has said, “A person who does not marry on account of his poor financial condition does not have faith and confidence in Allah.”

With this in mind, many Islamic countries have adopted the hosting of mass weddings. As one of many gifts given during the month of Ramadan, Egypt hosts mass weddings for low-income and physically handicapped couples. The decorated tables and entertainment provided for the couples and their guests are a blessing.

Earlier this month, Iran’s Interior Ministry married 700 couples in one day and 850 couples on the next. They expect to marry 14,000 couples. The general director of the project, Ahmad Bahraini, said to Associated Press writer Ali Akbar Dareini that the purpose is to “…encourage marriage among our young people, and invite the public to hold modest celebrations in order to save money.”

Many young Iranian men do not get married before they are 30 because it is too difficult for them to save enough money to cover the expenses of marrying. Yet maintaining modesty in the expenses of marriage is what the Prophet of Islam (SAW) recommended, and the example he set when he married his daughter, Fatima Zahra, to the fourth Caliph, ‘Ali ibn Talib.

Bride Zahra Nowruzi said, “I’m spending the happiest days of my life.”

Her groom, Rostam Bahadori, 27, a Geography graduate is looking for work, but he expressed that he’s not really worried. “If I can’t find a job, I can work on a piece of land for my father.”

This choice is not always available to Muslims living in westernized societies, but many other choices can have implications that delay the decision to marry. Among the socialites in Cairo, Egypt, there can be an average of three weddings a week that are laboriously planned for the public’s attendance. Yet, there are many divorces.

Muhammed Hefzy is of the opinion that, “…We suffer from a distinct lack of romanticism surrounding our lives.”

Bachelors from these communities argue that:

  1. Many girls convince themselves that they love men that they want to spend the rest of their lives with, but their underlying reason for wanting to marry is to break away from the control of their parents and they assume marriage will bring them independence.
  2. For this reason, many young people will never know what it is like to experience love and companionship.
  3. There is a failure to see the difference between being loved and cared for and paying for someone to care for you.
  4. Men are scared of losing their privacy. It is considered that most women are too insecure to handle a request for privacy and feel that some thing is wrong; that their husbands do not love them any more.

Across communities and social classes, one finds Muslim women who have limited experience dealing with people outside of their immediate families. It is a trend for them to marry because of their belief that they will gain independence by doing so. Then, within a year or so, their commitment towards their husbands changes once they realize that the dreams they had pictured in their minds (that songs and films have inspired) are different from the reality of their lives. Imaginary icons are then either broken, or they are imposed on husbands (sometimes on wives).

Without their realizing it, a mutual distrust develops that begins to form the direction in which each spouse relates to their marital partner. Couples either adjust and accept the disparity between expectations and reality, or a crisis occurs that gives them a second chance in their marriage, or they drift apart within the marriage, or ultimately they separate or divorce.

We go “off-course” when we lose touch with our inner beings, or if, in fact, we haven’t yet developed that inner understanding of ourselves. Distracted by the daily demands of life in the form of school, employment, and eventually marriage, we might not have ascertained what we really want. This can set up a pattern for choosing a wrong partner.

Rasul’ullah (SAW) said, “…A person who will marry for the sake of wealth and beauty will ultimately be deprived of both, and he who will marry for the sake of piety and faith will be blessed with wealth and beauty from Allah.”

The right choice in marriages involves a person that we can bring out the best in, and vice versa, in order to form a family that can provide security and peace of mind and heart. We need to look for mates who can satisfy our needs and goals.

If a couple with a healthy, functional marriage is blessed with children, the family environment will provide a sound foundation for them in choosing the best marital partner and making the right decisions in their lives.

To wives, Rasul’ullah (SAW) said, “Invite your husbands to do good before they persuade you to do wrong deeds.”

To husbands, Rasul’ullah (SAW) said, “You men must make yourselves tidy and be prepared for your wives, as you would like them (your women) to be prepared for you.”
Sources:

Hendawi, Hamza. “Arabic Talk Show Stirs Controversy,” Associated Press, February 2001.

Dareini, Ali Akbar. “Mass Weddings Encouraged In Iran,” Associated Press, February 2001.

Amina, Hujjatul-Islam Ibrahim. Principles of Marriage Family Ethics, Islamic Propagation Organization

Hefzy, Muhammed. Much Ado About Marriage, Engima, February 2001.

Reprinted from Islam Online

 

Some Husband and Wife Issues

By Dr. Muzammil H. Siddiqi


These questions and answers are from Dr. Siddiqi’s column, which is published on the Pakistan Link website.

Q 1. A Muslim woman was very badly treated by her husband. For several years she tried to separate from him and asked him for divorce, but he refused to divorce her. Finally she went to the American court and filed for divorce. Now she has received the judgment from the court and her marriage with this husband is dissolved by the American court, but her husband tells her that only a Muslim judge can dissolve the Islamic marriage. The non-Muslim American court has no right to dissolve their Islamic marriage. He insists that they are still married. He has some Fatwas from some ‘Ulama in India and Pakistan who support this view. She really does not want to live with him, but he wants to punish her by keeping her in this uncertain condition. What is the solution? Please explain the Islamic position in this matter.

A 1. According to Islamic law only a husband has right to divorce his wife. In case a wife does not want to live with her husband she has a right of Khula’, i.e. she should ask her husband to divorce her and in return she may give up her Mahr. If the husband refuses to divorce her and she finds it impossible to live with him, then she can go to a Muslim judge (Qadi) and can ask him for the dissolution of their marriage. Muslim judge has the authority to dissolve Islamic marriage.

The dilemma that Muslims in America face is this that there are no Muslim courts or Muslim judges in this country, and even if some Muslim scholars or imams of some Islamic centers dissolve a marriage according to Islamic laws, the American courts do not recognize Islamic divorces. Until the American court dissolves the marriage, the parties are considered legally married. In America, divorce can only take place by the judgment of the civil court, neither a husband has right to divorce his wife, nor a wife to divorce her husband, nor a religious authority of any religion can dissolve a legal marriage. (To my knowledge the only exception is given to some American Indian groups in their reservations.)

Under these circumstances we can say that Muslims have three options:

  1. In case of marital dispute the husband of wife both should go to a Muslim scholar and both of them should sign an agreement that they would accept his decision. Once the decision is made they should file it in the family court. Such marriage settlement agreement will be according to Islamic law but it is also acceptable under the American family law. Once this agreement is filed it becomes binding on both parties.
  2. Second option is that husband and wife both sign a pre-marital agreement that in case of dispute they will resolve their differences and/or dissolve their marriage according to the Islamic law.

A properly formulated pre-nuptial agreement is acceptable in most of the States and it is binding on both parties. 3. In case they do not have a pre-nuptial agreement or either the husband or the wife refuse to go to an Islamic authority to resolve their disputes, then they have no choice except to go to non-Muslim American courts and because of the necessity and to protect the rights of woman or man, the decision of the American court should be acceptable, as long as it does not contain anything that is clearly forbidden under the Islamic law. Under these circumstances, if a woman obtains a decree of the dissolution of marriage, the Islamic centers should recognize it and should give the woman a letter confirming American court’s decision. They may say that under the present circumstances we have no objection to the courts decision and consider this couple no more husband and wife under the Islamic law as well.

Q 2. Can husband and wife or one of them expose themselves in front of each other? (H.Y., Los Angeles)

A 2. Yes, there is no ‘awrah (things to be hidden) between the husband and wife. Husband and wife can be naked in front of each other. However, Islam urges human beings to observe haya’ (modesty). The Prophet – peace be upon him- said, “The Haya’ is part of faith.” So one should not be nude unnecessarily. Husband and wife can take their clothes off in front of each other to enjoy their sexual relations at the time of sex, but after that they should cover themselves. It is not good to walk all around the house naked, even in one’s privacy what to say in front of others. It is absolutely haram to be nude in front of other people unless it be before the doctor for medical examination and treatment only.

Q 4. Can husband and wife taking bath together?

A 4. Yes, husband and wife are allowed to take bath together.

Q 5. Is husband allowed to drink his wife’s milk?

A 5. It is makruh (disliked, not recommended). That milk is for the babies and it should be left for them. However, if, unintentionally, some milk goes into his mouth, it is not forbidden, but he should not plan to drink that milk. Rada’ah or foster relationship and its rules come only when a child under the age of two years drinks a woman’s milk several times. If a grown up person drinks a woman’s milk, she would not become his foster mother and the rules of rada’ah will not be applicable in this situation.

 

 

Marriage Break Down

Reprinted from the Jamiat-ul-Ulama website, jamiat.org.za
Nowadays, the general trend governing marriages is that the husband views his responsibility towards his family as being a purely materialistic one i.e. to provide financially for them (a house, car, clothes, etc). This attittude is resulting in many marriages breaking down since many husbands are seriously deficient in not spending sufficient time with their families – in communicating and interacting with the family and children. Islam presents a different view of the role of the husband, where he is made responsible for the Islamic nurturing and development of his wife and children as well as their psychological and moral welfare. In actual fact the time which he spends with his family is not only a responsibility but an act of Ibaadat for which he will be rewarded. Sad to note that despite this, many husbands become restless and seek every opportunity to withdraw from their families by, among other things:

  • Spending a great deal of time watching sports on TV
  • Spending many afternoons and evenings ‘with the boys’ at THE CLUB.
  • Going off at weekends to play golf or fishing.

It also often transpires that if the wife (reluctantly) agrees to an arrangement allowing the husband regular time ‘with the boys’ the opportunity is used for other purposes e.g. conducting illicit relationships (adultery), etc.

He seeks more and more to be away from his family and should the wife raise even the mildest objection, he usually reacts with a great temper tantrum. Sadly, many wives endure this torture of loneliness and neglect with a great deal of bitterness and sorrow, tolerating their miserable condition because they have no where else to go. How often have you heard a tearful wife say, ‘He’s got more time for his friends than for me’.

 

Allah’s Messenger (Sallallaahu layhi Wasallam) said, ‘The best of you is he who is best to his family’. (Mishkat)

Al-Jamiat Publications

 

Fatwa: The Maximum Amount of Time a Man Can Live Away From His Wife

Reprinted from Islam Online

Fatwa Question Details

QUESTION:

Name: Anwar from Pakistan
Title: The Maximum Amount of Time a Man Can Live away from His Wife

Question: As-Salaamu `alaykum. What is the maximum amount of time a man can live away from his wife? When a person moves to Europe or America, it can take one or two years (depending on the individual) to settle down properly. If his wife joins him from the beginning, it will be difficult for him to cope with the financial pressure and concentrate on other aspects of life.

ANSWER:

Date: 26/Apr/2001

Mufti: Islam Online Fatwa Committee

Answer: Dr. Su`aad Salih, Al-Azhar University, answers:

Wa`alaykum As-Salaamu wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh.

In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.

All praise and thanks are due to Allah, and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger.

The maximum limit a husband is allowed to be away from his wife is four months, or six months in the view of the scholars of the Hanbali school. This is the maximum period a woman can endure separation from her husband.

Exegetes of the Glorious Qur’an narrate the following incident in support of this opinion.

One night Caliph ‘Umar Ibn Al-Khattaab, may Allah be pleased with him, was making his rounds of Madinah when he heard a woman singing:

The night is long, darkness all around me;
I am sleepless, for I have no friend to play with.
By Allah, had there been no fear of Him,
This cot would be shaking from side to side.

Upon investigation, ‘Umar, may Allah be pleased with him, found that the woman’s husband had been on a military expedition for a long time. He then asked his daughter, Hafsah, a widow of the Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, “How long can a woman endure separation from her husband?” She replied, “Four months.” As a consequence, he decided that he would not send a married man away from his wife for a period exceeding four months.

However, if your wife agrees to give up this right for more than this period, and allow you to travel until she is able to join you, then it is lawful and there is no wrong in this.

Allah Almighty knows best.

 

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Posted by islamicwedding on October 7, 2008

Islamic Ruling on Specific Sexual Acts

Fatwa on Oral Sex

By Sheikh Muhammed Salih Al-Munajjid
Praise be to Allah!

It is permissible for the husband to enjoy/savor/relish his wife however he wishes, and to come to her in the genital area from any point he wishes. As Allah (Exalted is He) has said:

“Your wives are a tillage for you [to cultivate] [nisa’u-kum harthun l-kum]

so go to your tillage as you wish. [fa-’’tu hartha-kum anna shi’tum] Q 2:223.
It is unlawful for the man to perform two sexual acts on the wife, namely:

1. Sexual penetration [wat’] during menstruation[haid].

As Allah (Exalted is He) has said:

They question you concerning menstruation. [wa yas aluna-ka ‘ani ‘l-mahid:]

Say: It is an illness, [qul huwa adhan]

So let women alone at such times [fa-’’tazilu ‘n-nisa’a fi ‘l-mahidi]

and do not approach them until they are cleansed [wa la tagrubu-hunna hatta yathurn:]

And when they have purified themselves, [fa-idha tatahharna fa’’tu-hunna]

then go into them as Allah has enjoined on you. [min haithu amara-kumu ‘llah:]

Truly Allah loves those who repent, [inna ‘llaha yuhibbu ‘t-tawwabina]

and He loves those who keep themselves clean. wa yuhibbu ‘l-mutatahhirin.] Q 2:222.

2. Sexual penetration in the anus.

Allah’s messenger (Allah bless him and give him peace) has said:

“Accursed is he who has sex with his wife in her anus.” (Reported by Abu Dawud and Imam Ahmad [ibn Hanbal], and established as authentic in Sahih al-Jami’ 5889.)

These two prohibitions are mentioned together in the saying [hadith] of the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace):

“Beware of the anus and the menstrual period.” (Reported by Imam Ahmad [ibn Hanbal] and Abu Dawud; also in Sahih al-Jami’ 1141.)

As for the question of oral titillation of the pudendum, it all depends on two considerations:

1. It must not be hurtful.
2. It must not result in the introduction of impurity/dirt into the internal organs.

This [is what I have to say on the subject]. Allah knows best. May Allah bless our Prophet Muhammad.

This is a translation of Sheikh Muhammed’s answer as it appears on his question and answer site at http://www.islam-qa.com/

 

Answer to a Question About Oral Sex

By Dr. Muzammil H. Siddiqui, President: Islamic Society of North America (ISNA)
Monday, Oct 9, 2000

QUESTION:

Salaam Oualikoum

Is oral sex with your legal wife, of course, allowed in the Islam.

Abdellah, Netherlands
ANSWER:

Wa Alaikum Salaam,

There is no clear prohibition about oral sex in the Qur’an or the sunnah of the Prophet (SAAWS). However, according to many jurists, the fluids that the male of female organs emit during the time of sexual excitement, such as many (sperm) or madhi; etc., are all considered negis and they should not touch the mouth of the man or the woman. It is for this reason that many scholars do not recommend this practice and consider it makrooh.

Dr. Muzammil H. Siddiqui

Reprinted from Islam Online’s Fatwa Page

Fatwa on Oral Sex

By Mufti Ebrahim Desai, Darul Ifta, Madrasah In’aamiyyah, Camperdown, South Africa
Oral sex between a husband and wife is considered as Makruh Tahrimi by the jurists, since there is strong possibility that by ejaculation, Mazi (semen) comes out and enters the mouth of the partner. There is consensus amongst the Fuqahaa that Mazi is Najis (impure)

ORAL SEX

Man has been created as a bearer of high and noble attributes. In him he mirros the attributes of divinity (Sifaat-e-Ilaahiyya) such as life, knowledge, power, will, sight, hearing, speech, love, etc. In the authoritative Tafseer of the aforementioned Aayat, it is said that Insaan (man) has been adorned with the Noor of Aql (the light of intelligence). This celestial faculty of intelligence creates in Insaan the capacity for the manifestation of the lofty and divine attributes of Allah Taãla. By virtue of the Noor of Aql man becomes incandescent by being a mirror for these lofty attributes and manifestation (Tajalliyaat-e-Zilliyah and Sifaat-e-Zaatiyyah). As a direct consequence of this lofty pedestal which Insaan occupies in the Divine Scheme, the mantle of Khilaafah (vicegerency) has been conferred on him. Stating this fact, the Qurãn declares: ‘Verily I shall be creating on earth a Khaleefah.’

In the Tafseer of the Aayat mentioned at the beginning, it is also said that in relation to all the species of life, man has been endowned with the most beautiful form. All other animals have been created in a lowly form with their heads downwards. Their faces constantly pointing downwards to the earth indicate their low rank in relation to man. In contrast, man has been created upright and he eats his food by means of raising it with his hands unlike the lowly beasts with faces downwards.

HIS DEBASEMENT

In the Tafseer of the Aayat, it is said that when man willingly destroys his natural ability to progress to the pedestals of elevation, he degenerates and falls from his lofty mansion. He then falls to levels lower than the level of dogs, pigs and even Shayaateen.

SUPERIORITY

According to the authentic Tafaseer, prior to the creation of Aadam (Álayhis salaam), the Malaaikah (angels) entertained the opinion that Allah Taãla will not create any being superior to them. Allah Taãla negates this opinion of the Malaaikah by creating Aadam (Álayhis salaam) and making him a manifestation of divine attributes. To illustrate Insaan’s superiority over all pecies of creation, Allah Taãla commanded the Malaaikah to make Sajdah (prostration) to him (Nabi Aadam (Álayhis salaam). The superiority of man is well emphasised by the statement of Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Álayhi Wasallam): ‘Allah created Aadam in His (Allah’s) form.’ Insha Allah, this Hadith will be explained in greater detail in some future issue of ‘the Majlis’. Here it is sufficient to mention the interpretation of the authorities intelligence, sight, hearing, etc. These lofty attributes are located in that part of the human body called head. It is for this reason that Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Álayhi Wasallam) forbade striking or slapping the face of any human being or even an animal. In the Tafseer of the Qurãnic Aayat which permits husbands to beat wives in cases of necessity, it is said: ‘The face shall not be slapped’. Explaining the reason for the prohibition of slapping the face, Imaam Nawawi (RA) says in his Sharhul Muslim, ‘Because the face is the embodiment of man’s beauty in addition to it being of sublime nature.’

THE LATAA-IF-E-SITTAH

In man there are six metaphysical or non-material or spiritual faculties known as the Lataa-if-e-sittah. Two of these lofty faculties, viz. Lateefah Khaafi and Lateefah Akhfa are located in the head. The Lateefah Akhfah is located in the centre of the brain while the location of Lateefah Khafi is between the eyebrows. The functions of these faculties are the highest states of reflection and contemplation, progressing from the high state of Fana to Fanul Fana. These are spiritual or Roohani stages which shall not be discussed in this article.

PATHWAY FOR QURÃN

In the Ahaadith, the following narration appears:

‘Verily, your mouths are pathways of the Qurãn, therefore purify your mouths with Miswaak’.

The Makhaarij or places from whence Qurãnic huroof (letters) emanate are located in the mouth. The high Ibaadat of Tilaawat of the Qurãn shareef is effected via the mouth, hence the Hadith describes the mouth as the ‘pathway of the Qurãn’. Since it is, literally speaking, the channel for the recitation of the Qurãn shareef, Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Álayhi Wasallam) emphasised much the maintainance of its purity. The emphasis on the purity of the mouth could be gauged from the many times Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Álayhi Wasallam) would use the Miswaak everyday to clean his mouth. The practice of Miswaak is strongly stressed by the Shariáh. In one Hadith, Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Álayhi Wasallam) said, ‘When the servant of Allah uses the Miswaak and then performs Salaat, an angel stands behind him, listening attentively to the recitation of the Qurãn. The angels draws closer and closer to the reciter and places his mouth on the mouth of the reciter. Thus every word emanating from the mouth of the Musalli enters the angel’s mouth. Therefore, maintain your mouth pure and clean for the Qurãn.’

ZIKRULLAH

The actual purpose underlying the creation of man is Zikrullah or the remembrance of Allah Taãla. Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Álayhi Wasallam) ordered Muslims to maintain their tongues fresh with the Zikr of Allah Taãla.

The facts mentioned above will indicate that Insaan is Ashraful Makhlukaat (the noblest of creation) and the noblest part of his body is his head which is the location for lofty faculties and attributes which earn for him the designation of ‘the form of Allah’. In order that he maintains his lofty rank and progresses continuously towards loftier mansions and closer Divine Proximity, it is essential that man exercises restraint over his physical and animal qualities. If he fails in this respect, he will descend to a level below the lowly beasts. Allah Taãla has endowed man with intelligence, will-power and shame. He must employ these attributes to subdue his animal and carnal desires and refrain from indulgence in the excesses of lust. If he fails in this achievement he will annihilate himself spiritually and degenerate to sub-animal levels.

The sublimity of Islam is of such a lofty degree that it exhorts its adherence to adopt dignity, deportment and propriety in even sexual relationship. Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Álayhi Wasallam) advised his Ummah to abstain from total nudity when indulging in sex and not to behave ‘like asses’. Since Islam is a culture of transcendental values calculated to ensure maximum remembrance of Allah Taãla, a Muslim should not debase himself to a sub-animal level by resorting to the vile practice of oral sex.
The mouth of Insaan is the pathway of the Qurãn, his tongue has been commanded to remain fresh with Zikrullah; his mouth is situated in the noblest part of his body; the functions of his mouth are noble and lofty; his mouth is a passageway for transference of the recited Qurãn into the mouth of the listening angel. He cannot, therefore, debase and dishonour himself so disgracefully by resorting to the revolting practice of oral sex. A Muslim should not dishonour that head and face which the Shariáh of Islam commands to be honoured. Allah Taãla honoured the human head with noble qualities, the highest being the Noor of Aql, but man debases that lofty part of his body by indulging in an act of bestiality not even committed by the lowly beasts. It does not behove man in general, and a Muslim in particular to degrade himself in this manner.

The Mu’min’s link with Allah Taãla is so strong or ought to be so strong that the Shariáh has prescribed a particular Duá to be recited even when a man approaches his wife for sexual relations. Even at the moment of reaching climax and ejaculation, the Muslim is required to read in his mind (without moving the lips) a special Duá so that he remains protected from any Shaitaani interference. We learn from the Hadith of Rasulullah (Sallallaahu Álayhi Wasallam) that Shaytaan attempts to interfere with man even while he indulges in lawful sex, hence the wording of the special Duá for this occasion is: ‘O Allah! Protect us from Shaytaan and protect the offspring you grant us from Shaytaan’.

Allah Taãla has honoured man highly, hence the Qurãn says, ‘Verily, we have honoured the sons of Aadam.’ He is therefore not allowed to debase himself with the bestial acts which even the lowly beasts do not commit.

The mouth is an honoured part of the physical body. It is not a receptacle of impurity. The Shariáh emphasises the maintainance of its purity. Even in the developing foetus, Allah Taãla has arranged for the maintainance of the purity of the mouth. The umbilical cord connects the developing embryo to its mother. It is the passageway in which exchange of nutrient and waste materials with the circulatory system of the mother takes place. In man the umbilical cord arises at the navel below which is the location of the rebellious Nafs which reduces man to sub-animal levels if not restrained. Why does Allah Taãla not create the foetus with the umbilical cord attached to its mouth so that its nutrition reaches it in the normal way, viz. Via the mouth? Right until the very last moments prior to its emergence into the external world, the baby’s nutrition is via the umblical cord. Immediately on reaching the outside world its nourishment reaches it from the mouth. Since the umbilical cord is also the passageway for impure waste matter, its connection is near to the location of the lowly nafs. The mouth has thus been guarded against impurities.

The facts presented in this article should be sufficient to convey to Muslims that their Imaan and the spirit of the teachings of Islam do not permit them to grovel in the dregs of debasement and perpetrate moral injustice by utilising the mouth for deriving sexual pleasure. This is not the function of the mouth. It is a misappropriation of an amaanat (trust). All parts of the body are Amaanat which have to be utilised in accordance with the instructions of Allah Taãla. Such contamination and moral pollution as entailed by oral sex are most unbecoming the dignity and rank of man, especially if the Insaan appears to be a follower of the illustrious Shariáh of Muhammad (Sallallaahu Álayhi Wasallam). Allah Taãla states in the Noble Qurãn, ‘Verily, Allah loves those who purify themselves.’

Extracted from ‘The Majlis’ Vol. 6 No. 8

And Allah Taãla Knows Best.

Was salaam

Yours faithfully,

Mufti Ebrahim Desai
FATWA DEPT.

Moulana Ahmad Kathrada
ADMINISTRATOR

Masturbation: Answer from Islam Online and Sheikh Yusuf Al-Qaradawi

Answer from Islam Online’s Fatwa Bank at Islam-Online.net

Title of Fatwa: Masturbation
Date of Reply: 14/ December/ 1999
Question of Fatwa: What is the point of view of Islam on the masturbation?

Content of Reply:

The pressing need to relieve himself of sexual tension may drive a young man to masturbation.

The majority of scholars consider it haram. Imam Malik bases his judgement on the verse, Those who guard their sexual organs except with their spouses or those whom their right hands possess, for (with regard to them) they are without blame. But those who crave something beyond that are transgressors, (23:5-7) arguing that the masturbator is one of those who “crave something beyond that.”

On the other hand, it is reported that Imam Ahmad Ibn Hanbal regarded semen as an excretion of the body like other excrete and permitted its expulsion as blood letting is permitted. Ibn Hazm holds the same view. However, the Hanbali jurists permit masturbation only under two conditions: first, the fear of committing fornication or adultery, and second, not having the means to marry.

Sheikh Yusuf Al-Qaradawi comments in The Lawful and the Prohibited in Islam:

We are inclined to accept the opinion of Imam Ahmad in a situation in which there is sexual excitation and danger of committing the haram. For example, a young man has gone abroad to study or work, thereby encountering many temptations which he fears he will be unable to resist, may resort to this method of relieving sexual tension provided he does not do it excessively or make it into a habit.

Yet better than this is the Prophet’s advice to the Muslim youth who is unable to marry, namely, that he seek help through frequent fasting, for fasting nurtures will-power, teaches control of desires, and strengthens the fear of Allah. The Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, is reported to have said, “O youth, whoever of you is able to marry, let him marry, for it spares one looking at what one should not, or lapsing in adultery. And if he cannot marry, let him observe fasting, for it is a shield against evil.” (Reported by Muslim).

You should make use of the following:

  1. Observe fasting, because it bolsters one’s faith, preserves chastity, and protects one from evil thoughts.
  2. Observe moderation in eating and drinking in order to avoid stimulating your desire.
  3. Keep away from anything that is sexually stimulating, such as pornographic pictures, erotic films and love songs.
  4. Choose good and righteous friends.
  5. Keep yourself busy in worship and spiritual acts.
  6. Interact with activities of the society in such away that it keeps you away from thinking about sex.
  7. Avoid gatherings and places that bring men and women physically close to each other.
  8. Avoid sleeping on beds that are so soft that they make one think about sex.
  9. Try to admire natural things such as flowers and beautiful scenery, which do not stimulate one sexually, instead of admiring girls and women.
  10. If you find the previous things useful, then it is forbidden for you to masturbate. However, if you find that you cannot relieve yourself except through masturbation, and you fear you may lapse in adultry if you do not masturbate, then the juristic rule which states that “the lesser evil is to be suffered in order to fend off the major one” applies to you, as masturbation is deemed to be the lesser of two evils in this case.But, we would like to stress that this may be done only in the case of dire necessity, when all soultions prove to be of no avail.

May Allah guide you to the right path and help you keep away from sins.

Allah Almighty knows best.

Masturbation: Comments by Sheikh Al-Munajjid

Answer from Sheikh Sheikh Muhammad S. Al-Munajjid, reprinted from http://www.islam-qa.com/:

Al-hamdu lillaah.

Masturbation (for both men and women) is haraam (forbidden) in Islam based on the following evidence:

First from the Qur’aan:

Imam Shafi’i stated that masturbation is forbidden based on the following verses from the Qur’aan (interpretation of the meaning):

“And those who guard their chastity (i.e. private parts, from illegal sexual acts). Except from their wives or (the captives and slaves) that their right hands possess, – for them, they are free from blame. But whoever seeks beyond that, then those are the transgressors.” 23.5-7

Here the verses are clear in forbidding all illegal sexual acts (including masturbation) except for the wives or that their right hand possess. And whoever seeks beyond that is the transgressor.

“And let those who find not the financial means for marriage keep themselves chaste, until Allah enriches them of His bounty.” 24.33.

This verse also clearly orders whoever does not have the financial means to marry to keep himself chaste and be patient in facing temptations (including masturbation) until Allah enriches them of His bounty.

Secondly, from the sunnah of the Prophet (peace be upon him):

Abdullaah ibn Mas’ood said, “We were with the Prophet while we were young and had no wealth whatsoever. So Allaah’s Messenger said, “O young people! Whoever among you can marry, should marry, because it helps him lower his gaze and guard his modesty (i.e. his private parts from committing illegal sexual intercourse etc.), and whoever is not able to marry, should fast, as fasting diminishes his sexual power.” (Bukhari: 5066). The hadeeth orders men who are not able to marry to fast despite the hardship encountered in doing so, and not to masturbate despite the ease with which it can be done.

There are additional evidences that can be cited to support this ruling on masturbation, but due to the limited space we will not go through them here. Allaah knows what is best and most correct.

As for curing the habit of masturbation, we recommend the following suggestions:

1. The motive to seek a cure for this problem should be solely following Allaah’s orders and fearing His punishment.

2. A permanent and quick cure from this problem lies in marriage as soon as the person is able, as shown in the Prophet’s hadeeth.

3. Keeping oneself busy with what is good for this world and the hereafter is essential in breaking this habit before it becomes second nature after which it is very difficult to rid oneself of it.

4. Lowering the gaze (from looking at forbidden things such as pictures, movies etc.) will help suppress the desire before it leads one to commit the haraam (forbidden). Allaah orders men and women to lower their gaze as shown in the following two verses and in the Prophet’s hadeeth (interpretations of the meanings):

“Tell the believing men to lower their gaze (from looking at forbidden things) and protect their private parts (from illegal sexual acts, etc.). That is purer for them. Verily, Allah is all-aware of what they do. And tell the believing women to lower their gaze (from looking at forbidden things) and protect their private parts (from illegal sexual acts, etc.) ….. “ 24.30-31

Allaah’s messenger said: “Do not follow a casual (unintentional) look (at forbidden things) with another look.” Al-Tirmidhi 2777. This is a general instruction by the Prophet to abstain from all that may sexually excite a person because it might lead him/her to commit the haraam (forbidden).

5. Using one’s available leisure time in worshipping Allaah and increasing religious knowledge.

6. Being cautious not to develop any of the medical symptoms that may result from masturbation such as weak eyesight, weak nervous system, and/or back pain (Zawaj.com Editor’s note: I don’t think there is any medical basis for this. And Allah knows best). More importantly, feeling of guilt and anxiety that can be complicated by missing obligatory prayers because of the need to shower (ghusl) after every incidence of masturbation.

7. Avoiding the illusion that some youth have that masturbation is permissible because it prevents them from committing illegal sexual acts such as fornication or even homosexuality.

8. Strengthening one’s willpower and avoiding spending time alone as recommended by the Prophet when he said “Do not spend the night alone” Ahmad 6919.

9. Following the Prophet’s aforementioned hadeeth and fast when possible, because fasting will temper one’s sexual desire and keep it under control. However, one should not overreact and swear by Allaah not to return to the act because if one does not honor one’s promise, one would be facing the consequences of not living up to one’s oath to Allaah. Also, note that medication to diminish one’s sexual desire is strictly prohibited because it might permanently affect one’s sexual ability.

10. Trying to follow the Prophet’s recommendation concerning the etiquette of getting ready for bed, such as reading well-known supplications, sleeping on the right side, and avoiding sleeping on the belly (the Prophet forbade sleeping on the belly).

11. Striving hard to be patient and chaste, because persistence will eventually, Allaah willing, lead to attaining those qualities as second nature, as the Prophet explains in the following hadeeth:

“Whoever seeks chastity Allaah will make him chaste, and whoever seeks help from none but Allaah, He will help him, and whoever is patient He will make it easy for him, and no one has ever been given anything better than patience.” Bukhari:1469.

12. Repenting, asking forgiveness from Allaah, doing good deeds, and not losing hope and feeling despair are all prerequisites to curing this problem. Note that losing hope is one of the major sins punishable by Allaah.

13. Finally, Allaah is the Most Merciful and He always responds to whoever calls on Him. So, asking for Allah’s forgiveness will be accepted, by His will.

Wallahu a’lam. And Allah knows what is best and most correct

 

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Posted by islamicwedding on October 7, 2008

Interfaith Marriages

Marriage to Hindus, Buddhists, Jews and Christians

By S. Abdullah Tariq
Reprinted from Islamic Voice, June 1997 / Safar 1418 AH

1. Marriage to a Hindu
2. Marriage to a Buddhist
3. Marriage to a Jew or Christian

Marriage to a Hindu

Questions:

1. I am a Hindu. Recently near our colony a Hindu boy married a Muslim girl. Later I am told that before the marriage, the Hindu boy was being asked to change his religion from Hinduism to Islam. In this case, why cannot the girl change her religion to marry the boy?

- K. Ravi, Behrampur

2. A Hindu woman married a Muslim man and is following Hinduism. She did not undergo Nikah. They kept Hindu names of their children and did not perform their circumcision. All of them including the husband talk Kannada (a local language) in their home. This man neither married nor is having any relationship with any other women. What is the Islamic law in this case?

- (XXX. Bijapur)

3. A Muslim married a Hindu. Both of them remained in their respective religions and it was known to all the relatives, friends and accquaintance that the Muslim spouse would continue his/her/Muslim identity. Will his/her Namaz-e-Janaza be offered by the Muslims and will he/she be allowed to be buried in the Muslim burial ground?

Under orders from a local Moulvi, the residents of the locality did not offer Namaz-e-Janaza in such a case and did not allow the burial in the Muslim burial ground. Is it right?

If the children of the above couple are free to choose the faith of their liking from any of the two religions, what will happen if they die before maturity?

- C.M. Jadwet, Calcutta

Answers:

1. Islam does not approve of idolatry and assigning attributes of one God to any other person or entity. The above sin will not be forgiven on the Day of Judgement. Although it recommends good peaceful relations with the peace loving non-Muslims, a compromise on faith is not permitted. As there shall be no re-birth in this world and a soul has its eternal abode in either the paradise or hell, how can Islam allow a Muslim to prefer burning in hell-fire as a result of abandoning Islam for the sake of a marriage? Qur’an has warned the Muslims thus. “Believers, fear Allah as your rightly should and do not die except as Muslims.” (Surah Al-Imran 3:102)

2. There is no harm if they speak Kannada. A language has no bearing on religion. Even keeping the local names of the children, provided the meaning of the name is not Mushrikana or Unislamic and not getting them circumcised could be ignored, but the very fact that he is living with a Hindu woman makes him a perpetual and consistent sinner. As for his punishment in Islamic law, it is irrelevant because it cannot be implemented.

3. Living constantly under sin does not make a person murtad (a renegade). Those wishing to offer his/her funeral prayer should not be barred from it or motivated against it. There also is not justification in not letting the body be buried in the Muslim burial ground.

The children who do not attain the age of accountability do not suffer for the misdeeds of their parents. They shall enter Paradise.

Marriage to a Buddhist

Question: Please refer to the Islamic Voice Sept. ’94 issue of ‘Our dialogue’ under the heading, “Can a Muslim marry a Buddhist?” Your reply is in the negative. While recognising marriage of a Jew or a Christian woman with a Muslim man on the ground of being “Ahle Kitab”, you have placed a Buddhist in the category of “Mushrikeen”, misquoting irrelevant verses of the holy Qur’an 2:221. As per Qur’an there is no nation in the world in which an Apostle/Prophet has not been sent. We understand that no effort has been made in our country to find and recognise a Prophet for the Indian nation. There must be a holy book in Indian language in whatever state it may be and there must be some followers thereof to be treated like Ahle-Kitab. Is it not necessary for Muslims to find out the true status of our Buddhist or Hindu brothers and live accordingly with them peacefully?

- F.M.Khan, Rewa

Answer: It is not necessary for Muslims to marry a Buddhist or a Hindu to live with them peacefully. We are required to live with them peacefully even if we are not allowed a matrimonial relationship with them. The answer you have referred to was taken from Arab News and the verse 2:221 was rightly quoted therein in context of the Buddhist. In the available literature of Buddhism, we do not find the conception of a Creator and Sustainer God. The present day Buddhists go a step further. Instead of maintaining silence on the existence of God, they have started denying God. Nearly all of them are idolaters although Buddha had specifically forbidden making and worshipping his idols. There is no doubt that they will be categorised among Mushrikeen and therefore matrimonial relations with them are forbidden. The Qur’an clearly ordains: “You shall not marry Mushrik women (idolatresses or who ascribe God’s attributes to others as ascribe partners of Him) unless they embrace the Faith. A believing slave woman is better than a Mushrik woman although she may please you. Nor shall you wed (your women to Mushrik men unless they embrace Faith. A believing slave is better than a Mushrik, although he may please you. These invite you to Fire but Allah calls you by His will to Paradise and to forgiveness. He makes plain His revelations to mankind so that they may be mindful.” (Surah Al-Baqarah 2:221)

In principle, there is some substance in your logic that there may be some followers thereof to be treated like “Ahle-Kitab,” but practically there is no Buddhist who can be categorised thus although there is the probability of some Hindus being termed as Ahle-Kitab. It is essential to understand the term Ahle-Kitab to grasp a clear-cut conception of his subject. From Qur’anic narrations and the scholars’ discussion, Ahle-Kitab’ may precisely be defined as:

“A group of people believing in God and Prophethood and the Books (or Book) of God, who still possess a Book of God (though distorted) and also know and believe in the Prophet through whom that Book was revealed.”

Buddhists do not believe in God and Prophethood. They do not believe in Buddha as a Prophet of God and apart from some stray saying ascribed to Buddha they don’t even possess the Word of Buddha.

On the other hand Hindus are closer to meeting the criteria than the Buddhists. They believe in God and an overwhelming majority of them believe in a Book (the Vedas) they call the Word of God. Research has been made to try to establish the identity of the Prophet or Prophets sent to the Indian people.

Late Moulana Shams Naved Usmani has done commendable work in this direction. I have been writing in the comparative studies column of Islamic Voice that there are conclusive proofs of a series of Prophets from Adam to Noah visiting India. (For more details, see my Urdu Book ‘Agar Ab Bhi No Jage To’ or its English translation ‘Now or Never’). Besides, the Vedas have a strong case of being the collection of scriptures revealed to these Prophets.

But even that is not enough to categorise Hindus as Ahle-Kitab. There should at least be a small sect, a group of people (not just a few individuals who do not know each other) who must believe in these Prophets as the bearers of Books that they claim to be the Book of God. Only then can that group of people be called Ahle-Kitab.


Marriage to a Jew or Christian

Question 1: The holy Qur’an has absolutely allowed marrying Jewish or Christian women vide 5:5. But IslamicVoice March ’96 in reply to a question forbade marrying a Catholic girl if she believed in Trinity. In my view the question whether she believes in one God or not is unreasonable, as there were Christians believing in the Trinity even in the time of the Prophet pbuh. (See Surah Maidah 5:73). The Qur’an has given sanction to believers to marry from the people of the book without any conditions.

- T.K. Yoosuf, Pulikhal, Malappuram

Question 2: Islamic Voice, in answer to a question on “Love marriage” states that a Muslim would be allowed to marry a Christian girl if she is a Unitarian Christian, in other words if she believes in One God. Fair enough. Can you kindly point out today a Unitarian Christian? Can you kindly point out today a Unitarian Christianity mentioned in the Qur’an? Unitarian Christianity is defunct now which is why our learned Ulemas have disapproved of this allowance. Hence your approval of such an alliance is erroneous and against the spirit of Qur’an.

- T.V.A. Abdul Malik, Madurai.

Answer 1: Believers are permitted to marry the girls from the people of the Book vide (Surah Al-Maidah 5:5) but you are greatly mistaken if you think that the permission is unconditional. Some conditions are laid down in the same verse i.e. you must pay Mehar to them and they must be virtuous women and not of loose character. Other conditions are derived from (Surah Baqarah 2:221) which forbids a Muslim to marry a Mushrik. As the Shariat orders are applicable on the apparent, all women who are involved in open Shirk are forbidden to believing men even if they are from Muslim families.

Deriving absolute orders from a verse when there are other verses also touching the subject can at times be very misleading. For example the same verse (5:5) allows the food of the people of the Book. But the permission is not unconditional although no condition is mentioned in the verse. In the case of meat, it should not be of an animal which is not slaughtered properly. The flesh of swine and that on which the name of other than Allah has been invoked is also unlawful although you frequently find these types of meat in the Christian families. Even at the time of the Prophet, Christians ate pork as it was allowed by St. Paul who was also the pioneer of Trinity in Christianity. And that is not all. You are not permitted to consume meat offered by Jews or Christians if you are certain that the Name of God has not been invoked while slaughtering the animal (Sell Surah Al-Anam 6:121).

So you see that the permission to marry a Catholic girl (Ahle-e-Kitab) in 5:5 is not without further conditions just as the permission to eat food of the Christians (in the same verse) is not unconditional. A Muslim’s marriage to a Catholic woman is permitted only if she does not practise idolatry and amends her belief of sonship of the Christ to the Prophethood of Jesus.

Answer 2: I have personal friends among Christians (born as well as convert Christians) who denounce Trinity, believe in One God and proclaim Jesus Christ a Prophet of God. There are Unitarian Churches and quite a number of Christians are openly Unitarian. There are also a large number of Christians who are formally attached to protestant Churches and other denominations but believe in One God and the Prophethood of Christ. Not withstanding the above fact, I am not supposed to demonstrate a Unitarian Christian if someone wants to know the conditions of marrying a Christian girl. Simply put, if a Trinitarian Christian girl is converted to Unitarianism, a Muslim is permitted to marry her. No Aalim can dare cancel the allowance given by Allah and His Prophet. Ulema have only recommended (and rightly so) against such marriages as in most of these love marriages, the girl only pretends to be Unitarian for convenience’s sake while the boy himself does not know even the basics of Islam. They have gone a step further, again rightly so, and recommended against marrying the Ahle-Kitab’ girl, especially a Christian, who is converted to Islam because in most such cases, the conversion in only a pretence, sometimes for the express purpose of converting the boy to Christianity after a while. Ulema’s warning is against deception and for those persons who are ignorant of Islamic ethics. They cannot and they have not altered the law. The genuine permission is neither erroneous nor against the spirit of Qur’an. It is for those seeking the permission to decide for themselves if they are only pretending to abide by the Shariat. In that case, they will deceive none but themselves as Allah knows what is in their hearts.

For the present day youth, it is wiser to explain the law with its boundaries and limitations to them instead of concealing the allowance provided by Shariat for the sake of untold considerations. In the Former case they may and they usually do try to be faithful while in latter they tend to altogether ignore the law.

Advice Regarding Marrying non-Muslims

By Ali Al-Timimi

 

QUESTION:

I need a fatwa regarding making the marriage contract in a church or in a civil court.So the question is: If a muslim is getting married with a Christian woman, is it permissible in Islam to make the marriage contract in a church or a civil court?

ANSWER:

as-Salamu alaykum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu:

As for regarding, marrying a Christian woman, one must understand that Allah has permitted for us the “muhsanaat” among them. This means that the woman _must_ be chaste. As for those Christian women who have had sex outside of marriage; it is impermissible to marry them. As most American woman, these days, have sex before marriage, a “muhsanah” from the Christians is a rarity!

As far as the contract, it is impermissible to have any part of the marriage ceremony at the church; as this entails witnessing shirk (or perhaps at times participating in shirk), like when the Priest takes the ring from thr groom, and then places it on the bride’s thumb, forefinger and the middle finger while saying “In the Name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost” (may Allah be exalted from such blasphemy) and finally rests the ring on the index finger. Also their marriage has many ceremonies which are from the practices of the unbelievers that one may not partake in.

As for the contract in a civil court, this is permitted if two conditions are met: (1) There is no acceptance of the laws and system of the disbelievers as supreme or valid as this would nullify our testimony of faith; (2) the registering of the marriage in the civil court results in some benefit that outweighs the harm of not registering the marriage. (This is the case with the majority of Muslim marriages in North America in particular for citizens and residents.)

 

QUESTION:

Secondly, is this allowed when the person is making a second contract according to the islamic teachings and laws regarding this issue?

ANSWER:

The Islamic marriage must proceed the civil registration; as it is only the Islamic marriage that makes the marriage valid. (An Islamic marriage entails in brief: (1) the acceptance of both partners and their suitability for marriage; (2) the acceptance of the bride’s guardian; (3) the dower; (4) and two wintesses.)

A court marriage is not a marriage according to the sharia. And hence both partners, if not married Islamically, cannot be alone with one another, let alone, live as husband and wife.

I have one final word of advice regarding the dangers and appropriateness of marrying a Christian woman. (1) If the marriage ends in divorce; the court will almost always and without exception give custody of the children to the woman; (2) if the husband tries to leave the US with the children and a court order issues a warrant for his arrest for kidnapping; the Dept. of Justice will send FBI officers to arrest the husband and bring back the children, even if he is overseas. In fact, there are special mercenaries for hire that for a fee will kidnap the children and bring them back to the US. This has happened in Jordan and Iraq. I even know first hand of an incident where a British Muslim (a white Englishman with a big red beard) who was arrested in Medina by Saudi authorities due to the pressure of the British government to return his Muslim daughter back to her Christian drug abusing wife and her boyfriend and to place him in jail for kidnapping his Muslim daughter to Saudi Arabia; (3) many Muslims today are weak in faith and suffer from feelings of inadequacy (due to this lack of faith) in front of Westerners (and in particular white Americans); as a result, it is often that the Christian wife who will control their lives. I know of many cases of Muslims who have married these Christian women and due to the enviornment have ended up in a case of “virtual” apostasy; (4) how appropriate is it to marry a Christian woman given that there are many Muslim woman who lack husbands? These are not only American sisters, converts and immigrant children who have grown up in this country and who need strong Muslim men to learn Islam from them and take care of them; but what about the tens of million of Muslim women from Muslim countries who due to war and displacement live very poor lives and are looking for a Muslim man to teach them and rescue them from their misery. If the youth of Islam remain with only one wife or marry Christians, who will shelter our sisters from Bosnia, Somalia, Iraq, Kashmir, Philipines, etc.! That is some advice from the heart that I felt must be brought forward. My apologies if these words are out of place.

Your brother in Islam

Ali Al-Timimi

Marriage Between Muslims and Non-Muslims

by A. S. Khan

In the following discussion I will attempt to address the issues involved in a Muslim marrying a non-Muslim. I will first discuss the matter in the light of religious laws and the opinions of scholars.

Then I will discuss the social aspects of family life and children in an inter-faith marriage. The ideas in this part are based on my and my friends’ personal experiences in inter-faith marriages and may be at VERY odds with your experiences or views on this matter.

Readers are encouraged to indicate any mistakes that I make here regarding Islamic laws and teachings.

Note: References are provided at the end of this article.

CONCEPT OF MARRIAGE IN ISLAM

There are several passages and verses in The Holy Qur’an regarding marriage and family that encourage Muslims to be married, if possible. The Prophet Muhammad (SAW) has even said that when a Muslim marries, he has fulfilled half of the religious devotion and duties and then he should take care of other half by being God-minded and aware of his obligations. [1]

Marraige is considered a religious duty in Islam and is enjoined upon all believers who can afford it. It provides a moral safeguard and legal means to develop relationship with the opposite sex and to extend the family. It is both solemn and sacred above physical terms. It is not only a contract between two persons committing themselves to eachother but it is a contract to which God Almighty is made the first Witness. It is made with every intention of making it permanent to the eternal success. Celibacy is NOT recommended either for Muslim men or women.

“The motivating cause of union – matrimonial and carnal – between the spouses is said to be love. This is a Qur’anic thesis that affirms the primacy of love as the cause of marriage, not simple reproduction. Nevertheless, the religious authorities, almost unanimously, interpret marriage as primarily reproductive in nature and as a means of perpetuating the species.

…..Islam views the carnal act as not merely the source of pleasure but also of as a source of “barakah” means that sexuality has apositive conotations and is not associated with sin,..” [2]

The following issues must be observed when a marriage based on Islamic priciples is desired [3]:

  • Both parties should get familiarized sincerely with eachother without getting involved in immoral acts or crossing boundaries set by Islamic moral teachings. No party should attempt to deceive the other in this process.
  • Woman should be chosen on the basis of their permanent values, such as, high morals, religious devotion, and not merely on her attractiveness or other mudane wealths. The Prophet is reported to have said that a woman is ordinarily sought as wife for her wealth, for her beauty, for the nobility of her stock, or for her religios qualities; but blessed and fortunate is he who chooses his mate for piety in preference to everything else. [4]
  • Woman is encouraged to judge whether the man is actually worthy of her respect, love and capable of providing her happiness in the whole life. She should consider if her marriage to the man will be allow her to fulfill the duties of a wife wholeheartedly.
  • Woman has a right to demand dowry (gift) from the man that she feel comfortable with. The man should meet her demands to show his willingness to undertake to responsibilities of married life and his readiness and capability to fulfill her justified needs.
  • The consent of both man and woman is necessary condition for the marriage without which the marriage is not valid.
  • The marraige ceremony should be made as publicly known as possible and should be celebrated in a joyful manner.
  • The marriage ceremony should be held before atleast two adult witnesses from the community and should be registered in official documents.
  • The maintenance of the wife and family is husband’s duty. The marriage entitles her with these rights and imposes certain obligations upon both parties. Any property which belongs to her before or during the marriage, the man has no right to the wife’s property during or after the marriage. This issue relieves the marriage of certain materialistic objectives and ensures the bond remain noble and beyond mundane greed.

The role of husband demands him to be bound by the promise to God to be kind and patient toward her; to keep her honorably in the marriage or otherwise free her from the martial bond honorably. [Ref. Surah 2:229-232; 4:19]

The wife is expected to work toward the happiness and comfort of her family. Wife must be sincere toward the family and honest and loyal to her husband. She should not deliberately avoid conception against her husband’s will [1]. Both spouses should keep eachother’s honor and protect and gratify eachother with love.

When a marriage based on Islamic principles has irreconcilable differences or irreparable damage done to the mutual trust, then as a last resort to make the distasteful marriage end, divorce is applicable. Divorce has been defined by the Prophet as the most detestable of all lawful things in the sight of God Almighty. Scholars believe a final course must be followed before a divorce is made final [5]:

  1. Both parties involved should try to reconcile the difference, settle the disputes and solve the problems within themselves.
  2. If they fail to come to an agreement and solve their problems, then a person from husband’s relations and the other one from wife’s should arbitrate the situation.
  3. If both attempts fail and both parties agree, divorce can be applied.
  4. If, after a divorce, a reunion occurs, it will be regarded as a fresh marriage. However, there can be no more than two reunions. The third divorce is a final one. In that case, the only possibility is that the woman needs to marry another man after “iddat” (varies from 3-12 monthly periods for diff. opinions; See Surah 2:228), consummate the marriage and get divorced and remarry the first husband again after “iddat.” (See 2:30). It allows a man to be thoughtful and composed in such serious matters and the marriage with another man allows a woman to evaluate if there are other men better than her first husband that she would like to be married. There is no compulsion in her getting divorced from the second husband, if she likes him better than the first one. [See also 2:224-232; 4:34-35; 4:127-130]

Some relatives that cannot be joined in a marriage are described in Surah Nisaa 4:22-24.

The following are the positions of scholars and Islamic laws on marriages bewteen Muslims and non-Muslims:

MUSLIM WOMAN AND NON-MUSLIM MAN

….And give not (your daughters) in marriage to Al-Mushrikun until they believe in Allah alone and verily a believing slave is better than a (free) Mushrik, even though he pleases you….[2:221] (Al-Mushrikun=Pagans, idolators, polytheist and disbelievers in the Oneness of Allah and in His messanger Prophet Muhammad SAW) – [6]

Islam considers the husband to be the head of the family and therefore requires that a Muslimah cannot marry a non-Muslim because she will be under the authority of a non-muslim husband. He may prevent her from carrying out her religious obligations by either pressuring her or physically abusing her. But it is not the sole reason for imposing the restriction. The situation is considered very damaging for the woman to practise Islam afterwards and even worse for the kids in such marriages. There are NO conditions mentioned under which a Muslim woman IS allowed to get married or remain married to a non-Muslim husband after she has accepted Islam. Therefore, even if she has freedom to practise Islam after marriage, she is NOT allowed to enter into an inter-faith marriage.

MUSLIM MAN AND NON-MUSLIM WOMAN

Marriage with Christians and Jews:

The marriages between Muslim men and CERTAIN non-Muslim women is allowed. However, certain restricitions exist on such marriages, especially if they occur in non-Muslim lands where Islamic law and religion is not prevailing.

Here I am translating the “fatwaa” from Maulana Muhammad Yousuf Ludhianvi, a well-known Muslim scholar from Pakistan, answering a question regarding the shar’aii position of marriages in the US with non-Muslim women. This question was asked by a Pakistani Muslim, living in the US, and it appeared in Maulana’s column that is published every Friday in a daily newspaper, “Jang”. He interprets the Islamic law as following:

1- Non-Muslim women, to whom Muslim men can marry, are the women from Christian and Jewish religions who are residents of “Daar-ul-Islam” (nations where Islamic law prevails) and who are thereby called, “Dhi’mmi” (those who give Jizyah in an Islamic state), but NOT the residents of “Dar al-Kufr” (where the kuffar or non-Islamic rule exists). To these women, marriage is allowed but is “mukrooh tanzihi,” or disliked. (Victor Danner describes “Dar al-Islam” as “the House of Islam, or the Islamic world; the Islamic community, where submission to the Divine Will reigns; as opposed to Dar- al-Har, the non-Islamic community.”)

2- With Christian or Jewish women, who are residents of “Dar a-Harb,” the nikah (the marriage contract) will be valid, but will be a “mukrooh Tahrimi” (worse than tanzihi) situation. The act which is “mukrooh tarhimi” is so close to “haraam” (not permissible at all) that it is ALMOST “haraam” and is “na’jaiz” ie. not legal. The man involved will be responsible for committing an act which is very close to a state of sin.

3- It is required that the women should be practising their religion at the time of marriage and they are not practically “Mulhid” (atheist). To any woman who doesn’t believe in God, religion, God’s message and doesn’t practise any religion at all, the “nikaah” (marriage) will be INVALID and according to “shari’ah” (Islamic Law); such a couple is involved in sin.

4- If any Muslim marries a woman from the “People of the Book,” the children, by shar’iah (Islamic law) are considered to be Muslim. For instance, often, in “Dar al-Harb,” the kids adopt the religion of their mother; and, sometimes, a marriage is arranged upon agreements between the couples that half of kids will adopt mother’s and the other half will follow father’s religion. If a Muslim man agrees to ANY of such terms accepting the kids to be raised non-Muslims, the person will be regarded as a “Murtid” (the one who has denied Islam) because he has allowed his kids to become “kaafir” who may have been brought up in Islamic religion. Anyone who willingly and knowingly allows/agrees for his kids to become “kaafir” is regarded as “kaafir.” He is out of the Islamic circle. If he had any Muslim woman in his “nikaah” before this marriage, the Muslim woman is free from his bond (because a Muslim woman can’t remain married a non-Muslim).

5- Since some of our naive Muslim young men, living in the West, get married to the Christian women in their countries, and since, usually, the local courts allow the women to get the custody of kids and the divorce settlement in their favor, our young men are “khusar al-duniyaa wal’-aakhiraah” meaning they have lost both this world and the Hereafter. Since, according to sharia’ah, the “al-maa’roof ka’almashrrot”, meaning whatever is prevailing or common practise in the society is being accepted in a marriage contract. It means a Muslim man, by getting married under these circumstances in these countries, is knowingly agreeing that the woman may, in case of divorce, gets the custody of the kids and is free to raise them afterwards as she pleases.

6- For all the above stated reasons, in non-Muslim countries, it is not allowed for Muslim young men to marry Christian women. For the reason #3 (woman not practising a religion), the “nikaah” isn’t even valid. Since the reason #4, leads to “kufr” and he becomes “murtid”, the marriage to any Muslim wife becomes invalid. The reason #5 is not apllicable, if the local laws do not usually grant custody to woman or if Muslim man hasn’t agreed to any “kufriaah” terms (such as accepting some kids to be raised as non-Muslims). “Haaza ma’ indee, wal’Allah ilm bis’swaab.”

It is clear that Maulana Yousuf’s position is extremely strict on the issue of getting married to non-Muslim women in the West. But so is the seriousness of such situations. A scholar at Dar ul-Noor hifz school and Al-Farooq Masjid, Atlanta, Dr. Abdul Ghaffar, recommends that if a Muslim is already married to a non-Muslima, he should REMAIN married to her. He should be kind and passionate to her and facilitate her understanding of true Islam. He should reflect Islam in his character and encourage her to become Muslim voluntarily before kids are born into such marriage. At that time, I found out the Al-Farooq Masjid doesn’t even administer ANY inter-faith marriages.

The best option under these circumstances is to introduce the woman to Islam and WAIT for her to accept Islam before getting married. Imposing any firm conditions of her accepting Islam before marriage will NOT do any good. Because, if a woman is willing to accept Islam merely to get married to a Muslim man that she likes, she will be most likely to leave Islam if the marriage ends up in a divorce or even if the marriage becomes unpleasant for her.

It should be desireable that a woman accepts Islam solely for the reason that she likes Islam. Any forceful acceptance of Islam is not likely to be permanent nor very suitable for a happy marriage. If the woman is not a Muslim by her own choice, then in case of divorce, she may leave Islam and be free to date and marry a non-Muslim. Her new family may ultimately decide how to raise the Muslim man’s children. This situation should never be acceptable to any Muslim man.

MARRIAGE WITH KUFFAR:

Marriages between Muslims and atheists are not permissible at all. In such cases, the man or woman should accept Islam before entering into a shar’ai legal “nikaah.”

And do not marry Al-Mushrikats {idolatress, etc.} until they believe (worship Allah alone). And indeed a slave woman is better than a (free) Mushrikah {idolatress, etc.}, even though she pleases you. And give not (your daughters) in marriage to Al-Mushrikun until they believe in Allah alone and verily a believing slave is better than a (free) Mushrik, even though he pleases you. Those Al-Mushrikun invite you to the Fire {Al naar}, but Allah invites you to the Paradise and Forgiveness by His Leave, and makes His Ayaat {proofs, evidences, lessons, verses, signs, etc.} clear to mankind that they may remember. [Surah 2:221] [6]

“…(Lawful unto you in marriage) are (not only) chaste women who are believers, but chaste women among the People of the Book revealed before your time, when you give them their due dowries, and desire chastity, not lewdness, nor sectret intrigues. If anyone rejects faith, fruitless is his work, and in the Hereafter he will be in the ranks of those who have lost (all the spritual good).” [Surah 5:5] (See the following two notes)

A note [7] following the above passage further describes that a Muslim man can marry a woman from their ranks on same terms as he would marry a Muslim woman, i.e. he must give her an economic and moral status, and must not be motivated merely by lust and physical desires. A Muslim woman cannot marry a non-Muslim primarily because her religious affiliation and duties will be affected by the authority of her husband. A non-Muslim woman marrying a Muslim man are expected to eventually accept Islam. Any man or woman, from any race or faith, upon ACCEPTING Islam can freely marry any Muslim, man or woman, provided the objective is purity and chasteness and not lewdness. In the above verse, “People of the Book” refers to the true followers of the religions who received God’s message in the form of teachings by Prophet Moses (AS) and Prophet Jesus (AS) before Islam. However, the term “people of the Books by no mean refers to the present Torah or Pentateuch or The Bible which were written by various authors decades and centuries after their respective Prophets. The term “Book” therefore does NOT affirm in any manner the validity of the present Bible (canonized in 325 AC) or Torah (written over an uncertain period est. 1500-1350 BCE) as God’s message as their followers vehemently argue and would like Muslims to take the term “Book” for their Bible or Torah. The following note by Abdullah Yousuf Ali is worth mentioning here:

Note #390: …The Original Gospel (see Surah 3:48 below) was not the various stories written afterwards by disciples, but the real message taught directly by Jesus (AS). St. Paul, author of almost half of the New Testament and the one annulling Mosaic law, and Luke, to whom “Gospel According to Luke” is attributed, were not even among the original 12 disciples.

“And Allah will teach him (Jesus (AS)) The Book and Wisdom, The Law and the Gospel.” [Surah 3:48] [This clearly indicates THE Gospel given to Jesus (AS) and not to the Council of Nicaea which decided, in 325AC, by vote, what The Bible canon should be comprised of].

“There is among them a section who distort the book with tongues; (As they read) you would think it is part of the Book, But it is no part of Book; and they say, “That is from Allah,” But it is they who tell a lie against Allah, and (well) they know it!” [Surah 3:78]

Note: Much has been already said on this topic on s.r.i.

MARRIAGE WITH JEWS:

According to Jews, a Jewish Mother gives birth to a Jew. As one of my friend tells, this issue has caused problems especially in Israel where a woman who married a Muslim man was exhorted by Jews and ultimately she accepted Islam to avoid the pressure on her family. All the rules that apply to Christian women, apply here as well.

[1] Hammudah Abdalati, “Islam in Focus”, pg. 114, American Trust Publications, Indiana.
[2] Victor Danner, “The Islamic Tradition: An Introduction”, pp.130, Amity House, New York.
[3] [1] pp. 179.
[4] [1] pp. 115.
[5] [1] pp. 180
[6] “The Holy Qur’an: Interpretation of the Meaning of The Noble Qur’an in the English Language” A summarized version of At-Tabari, Al-Qurtubi, and Ibn Kathir with comments from Shahih Al Bukhari. By Dr. Muhammad Mohsin Khan & Dr. Muhammad Taqi-Ud-Din Al-Hilali, 1993, Islamic University, Al-Madina Al-Munawwara, Maktaba Dar-Us-Salaam, Riyadh, KSA. Phone:4033962, Fax:4021659.
[7] A Yusuf Ali, “The Holy Qur’an: Text, Translation and commentary”, Sh. Muhammad Ashraf Ali Publishers and Booksellers, Lahore, Pakistan. 1939

Issues to Consider in an Inter-Faith Marriage

by A. S. Khan
Before a Muslim man steps into an inter-faith marriage, there are numerous issues that he must understand himself and discuss with his non-Muslim wife-to-be. Some issues are:

COMMUNITY AND SOCIAL ISSUES TO CONSIDER FOR AN INTER-FAITH MARRIAGE

Here I will discuss the issues considering social and practical implications that can generally affect an inter-faith marriage. These issues will include religious compatibility, relationships with non-Muslim relatives, friendships circle, religious celebrations, food, social gatherings, acceptable dress code, cultural awareness and religious tolerance, charity, volunteer activities.

Before a Muslim man steps into an inter-faith marriage, there are numerous issues that he must understand himself and discuss with his non-Muslim wife-to-be.

RELIGIOUS COMPATIBILITY

Given the western environment so resentful and inconsiderate toward Islam, its always better to have peace in the “home.” The family life will be much worry-free and harmonious if both spouses belong to the same religion and agree on same theology esp. if cultural differences also exist. Islam allows marriage to a Christian or Jew woman, but only under certain conditions. As described earlier in the first portion, the inter-faith marriages are permissible only in an Islamic society.

It is always better to introduce the woman to Islam and encourage her to become Muslima BEFORE marrying her. It will allow the woman to realize if she can take Islam as her religion and raise kids as Muslims; or if she has any innate notions against Islam or unwillingness to follow Islamic way of life. Most probably it will become self-evident to the man that what type family life can he expect from her as a wife.

RELATIVES & FRIENDS AND THEIR INFLUENCE

Certain situations when dealing with non-Muslim relatives and friends may occur and can lead to unanticipated misunderstandings.

Non-halaal Items

A non-Muslim woman is not bounded by Islamic values regarding dressing up, mixed parties, eating non-halaal foods and consuming alcohol. She MAY avoid all such items voluntarily to make family life pleasant or as a goodwill gesture to please her Muslim husband, if he doesn’t like them. Otherwise, she is under no obligation to avoid what is allowed to her by her religion.

By getting married to a non-Muslim woman, the husband should realize that he has already agreed to her being a non-Muslima and should not expect a woman to behave like Muslima if she is not one.

A Muslim should expect that the family will be invited to certain parties and dinner where all non-halaal items may be served. He may want to shun away from enjoying all the non-Islamic items, but the non-Muslim wife may want to consume them.

Personally I don’t like participating in meals where Non-Muslim relatives and family friends offer prayers in the names other than Allah at their dinner tables and show no consideration for other people. It will be difficult to make kids not to eat certain non-halaal items while the non-Muslim mother enjoys them. Again, it is upon the woman’s discretion to avoid all or some of the non-permissible items in Islam.

Non-Muslim Celebrations

Often the problems with non-Muslim relatives arise with the birth of a baby. Most christian grand-parents attempt to test the waters by giving the new-borns baptism or celebrate other religious ceremonies. In that event, unless the non-Muslim wife makes sure her side of family understands her husband’s reservations about such celebrations, the situation may get tense at such a joyful occasion and may leave bitter memories.

Grandparents and other relatives may also want to celebrate (religiously) Christmas and, above all, Good Friday- a true christian holiday commemorating the Friday of so-called Jesus’s death on the cross and his rising from the dead on Sunday.

Non-Muslims friends will also invite the family on their religious events and the non-Muslim wife may want to participate and take the kids with her to such celebrations and festivities. At such instances, it may be difficult to participate in their ceremonies and esp. in telling the kids what not eat and whom not to pray to.

FRIENDSHIP CIRCLE

The family has friends from both faiths and it will be unfair that you have only Muslims friends. But sometimes certain outside non-Muslim influences in the marriage and esp. on the kids are to be avoided.

ACCEPTABLE DRESS

Islam prescribes the dress codes for man and woman. Not many Muslim men and women, either living in secular Muslim countires or the West, today follow the dress code perfectly. However, most Muslim women still do not go around normally in sleveless shirts, shorts or bikinis. If the Muslim man is trying to follow his religion then he will obviously prefer his wife and kids to be dressed properly. If the wife is non-Muslim then she is under no obligation to follow a strict Islamic dress code. But she may choose to dress up in proper manner again to please her husband, not to offend him and to guard her beauty from other men. But, then again, it will be her choice which may fluctuate with her relationship with the Muslim husband.

CULTURAL VALUES

There are certain western customs that may not be acceptable for a Muslim husband. Mixed parties usually include dancing and drinking. Hugging and kissing cheeks of male and female friends is another practise which is not permissible in many Islam. The Muslim husband may have to clarify these issues with his non-Muslim wife.

RELIGIOUS TOLERANCE IN THE FAMILY

If a Muslim man marries a non-Muslima, either practising Jewess or Christian (a sharaii requirement), then she probably will continue to practise her religion after the marriage. If she does, then she will demand the liberty to attend, contribute, volunteer and work for her religion.

Since, the advent of Islam in the West has caused tumult in the western religious institutions, esp. the churches and christian seminaries, their efforts are now focusing on esp. proseltyzing Muslims more than ever before. The church-going women are more prone to fall to the propaganda against Islam by the missionaries prepared specifically to “reach out” to Muslims. The ongoing propaganda at churches depicts Muslims “persecuting” christian minorities in Sudan, Egypt, Iran, Jordan, Pakistan, Nigeria and other Muslim countries. The religious differences, augmented under this environment, may damage the peaceful life at home.

The non-Muslim wife may want to volunteer and contribute financially to her religious institution and its activities- 10% of the income is to be given as “tithe” donations to the churches. It is usually disturbing too see your money support the exact religious institutions whose major goals now include defaming and sabotaging the religion of Islam and converting Muslims using monetary resources in poor countries.

RAISING MUSLIM KIDS

The foremost thing to understand here is that most of us who were raised in Islamic environment, even if it may have been a secular govt. such as in Pakistan, Egypt, Bangladesh, Turkey, Indonesia, etc. The environment and society was mostly responsible for our learning and understanding of Islam. Right from the beginning, we learned Islam in bits and pieces at home, school, through radio, TV and even through our praticipation is Islamic students/political parties. In combine families, the grandparents and relatives helped our parents teach Islamic values to the kids.

In the West, it is a totally different environment. In most cases, the parents are probably the only “bridge” between Islam and their kids. If only the husband is a Muslim, then that bridge is even narrower. If the father himself is not very knowledgeable in Islam and doesn’t participate in or mingle with Muslim (not social) community and activities in the West, then the kids will grow up virtually ignorant to Islam. In general, to them, Islam is a foreign religion.

A man usually doesn’t have much time to spend with the kids and if the wife is non-Muslim too, then there is not much kids can learn about Islam even at home. Dressing them up in cultural/international clothes, feeding them cultural food and taking them to Masjid once or twice a year doesn’t teach them any Islamic values or religion at all. If we assume the kids will learn Islam values LATER, the question arises: From WHO?

If the kids have a non-Muslim mother and she doesn’t respect Islamic dress code and eating habits, ie. she wears shorts, skirts, bikinis and eats non-halaal meats or drinks, then how in the world can we expect that our kids will not do the same. How diificult it will be for the husband to teach the kids to avoid these “NOT-OK” things while they’re okay for their respected mother. Will he be telling them that their mother doesn’t have “good” moral values?

In an inter-faith marriage, where both parents practise their respective religions, often kids are grown to be confused in religious matters. They have sympathies to both religions. But due to opposing views, they are usually unable to “make up” their mind. Most do not want to reject either religions.

If Kids are drawn by mother and father to their respective worship places and to participate in their religious activies. What would a Muslim husband tell his kids if they want to go to church on Sundays with their Mom. Similarly, what will a non-Muslim mother say to her kids, if they go to Masjid on Fridays and on Sundays for taa’leem. The clildren need a single religion preached and taught to them.

Marriage is a critical decision in not only our life, but for our kids and their and our hereafter. Let’s be real careful about it.

And those who pray, “Out Lord! grant unto us wives and offsprings who will be the comfort of our eyes, and give us (the grace) to lead the righteous.” [Surah 25:74]

Marriage Outside Islam

By Jamiatul Ulama (Kwazulu-Natal)

 

Some rules and laws for the Muslim man and woman.

 

It is not permissible for a Muslim woman to marry a non-Muslim man.

It is permissible for a Muslim man to marry a Christian/Jewish woman strictly under these two conditions: 

  1. She is a true Christian/Jew – not by name and/or ancestral background.
  2. She did not renegade from Islam and become a Christian/Jew.

NB. Due to some threatening factors, it is discouraged to marry a Christian/Jewish woman. It is perhaps for these factors that Hadhrat Úmar (Radhiyallaahu Ánhu) stopped Muslims during his reign of power to marry Christian/Jewish women.

 

If there is a difference in religion after marriage then four possibilities may arise.

  • Both spouses were non-Muslims and both simultaneously accepted Islam.
  • Both were Muslims and both simultaneously became Murtads (renegade from Islam).

In the above two situations the Nikah remains intact.

  • One becomes a Muslim and the other remains a non-Muslim. This situation is of two types.

The husband accepts Islam and the woman remains a non-Muslim. If the woman is an Ahlul-Kitaab (Christian or Jew as described above) then the Nikah is intact but if she follows some other faith then in an Islamic state the following procedure will be adopted:

The Qaadhi will invite her to Islam: if she accepts then the Nikah will be intact, but if she refuses or maintains silence then the Qaadhi will annul the marriage. If this situation occurs in a non-Islamic State then upon the woman spending three menstrual cycles, the Nikah will be instantly annulled.

  • The wife accepts Islam and the husband remains a non-Muslim.

If it is in an Islamic State the Qaadhi will invite him to Islam. If he accepts then the Nikah will remain. If he rejects or maintains silence then the Qaadhi will effect a separation. In a non-Islamic State the woman will be divorced upon three menstrual cycles. The woman will then have to observe another three menstrual cycles on observing Iddat.

 

In the situation where one of the spouses renegades. This is of two types.

If the husband renegades then the marriage is instantly annulled.

If the wife renegades then – according to the preferred opinion – this does not effect the Nikah. She will still be his wife. However, until she does not accept Islam the husband cannot cohabit with her.

Prepared by:

Department of Social and Welfare and Darul Ifta
Jamiatul Úlama (KZN)

 

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Sahadi Articles

Posted by islamicwedding on October 7, 2008

Sahadi Articles

 

 

 

Marriage

 

 

Marriage, Casts and Compatibility


Posted byadministrator on Tuesday, July 15 @ 12:00:00 EEST
Contributed by
administrator

By Shaykh ‘Abdul-‘Azeez bin Baaz 1

[COMPATIBILITY IS ONLY BASED UPON RELIGION AND PIETY]

From the evil and reprehensible matters is that some who claim to be from Banu Haashim (i.e. claim to be a Sayyid; someone related to the Prophet sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam’s family) say that there is no kafaa’ah (marriage compatibility) between them and someone from outside of their own clan. So they do not get married outside of their clan, nor allow anyone from outside of their clan to marry them. This is a great error, a monstrous ignorance, oppression against the woman, and it is a legislation which neither Allaah nor His Messenger sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam legislated or prescribed. Rather, Allaah – the Most High – said:

“O mankind! We have created you from a male and female, and have made you into nations and tribes; that you may know one another, Indeed the most noblest of you with Allaah is the one who has the most taqwaa (piety, fear, and obedience of Allaah).” [Soorah al-Hujuraat 49:13].

“Indeed the Believers are but brothers.” [Soorah al-Hujuraat 49: 10].

“The Believers – men and women – are allies and protectors, one to another.” [Soorah at-Tawbah 9:71].

“So their Lord accepted from them their supplication, and responded: Never will I allow to be lost the actions of any of you, be they male or female. You are one to another.” [Soorah Aal-‘lmraan 3:195].

Allaah’s Messenger sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said: “Indeed there is no excellence for an arab over a non-arab, nor for a non-arab over on arab, nor for a white person over a black one, nor for a black person over a white one, except through taqwaa (piety and obedience to Allaah). The people are from Aadam, and Aadam was from earth.”2

The Prophet sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam also said: “Indeed my awliyaa (friends and allies) are not the tribe of so and so. Rather my friends and allies are the muttaqoon (those who possess taqwaa) – wherever they may be.”3

The Prophet sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said: “If there comes to you a person whose Religion and character are pleasing to you, then marry him (i.e. give the girl in marriage to him). If you do not do this, there will be Fitnah (trial and discord) and greet fasad (corruption) upon the earth.” This was related by at-Tirmidhee and others, with a hasan isnaad (good chain of narration).4

The Prophet sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam married Zaynab bint Jahsh of the Quraysh (i.e. the Prophet’s clan) to Zayd ibn Haarithah, his freed slave. He married Faatimah bint Qays from the Quraysh clan, to Usaamah, the son of Zayd. Bilaal ibn Rabaah, the Ethiopian married the sister of ‘Abdur-Rahmaan ibn ‘Awf of the Quraysh. So the purpose here is to explain the falsehood of those who claim that it is forbidden, or detested, for someone from the Prophet’s sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam’s clan to marry outside of that clan or tribe. Rather, what it is obligatory in this matter is to consider only Religion as the compatibility factor. So the Prophet sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam distanced Abu Taalib and Abu Lahab (his uncles) – because they were not Muslims and drew near Salmaan the Persian, Suhayb the Roman, and Bilaal the Ethiopian. This is because they possessed eemaan (faith) and piety, and they followed the Prescribed Laws and traversed the Straight Path. Thus, whosoever adopts this false and ignorant practice of barring Haashmee women from marrying from outside of their clan or tribe, will only achieve blameworthy results; such as corruption of the people, or adversely affecting the birth-rates, even though Allaah – the Most High – said:

“And marry those amongst you who are single, and the righteous from your slaves. If they be poor, Allaah will enrich them out of His Bounty, And Allaah is all-Sufficient for His creation, the all-Knowing about their state.” [Soorah an-Noor 24:32].

So He commanded to marry those that are single, and to marry all other categories of Muslims – irrespective of whether they be rich or poor. Thus, since the Islaamic Sharee’ah urges and encourages the institution of marriage. So the Muslims should hasten to fulfill this command of Allaah and of His Messenger sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam when he said: “O youths! Whosoever amongst you has the ability to marry, then let him do so; for it lowers the gaze and restrains the private parts. But whosoever does not have the ability then let him take to fasting; for indeed it is a shield for him.” Its authenticity has been agreed upon.5 Thus, it is incumbent upon the guardians to fear Allaah concerning their guardianship, since it is an amaanah (trust and responsibility) around their necks, and Allaah will question them concerning this trust. So it is upon them to hasten in getting their daughters, sons, and sisters married, to the extent that this task has taken full effect in life, and the corruption and harms of not doing so have been minimised. And it is known that when women are prevented from getting married, or if their marriage is delayed and deferred, then this is a cause for calamities to occur, a cause for shameful moral crimes to take place, and a cause for a decline in standards of behaviour. So – O worshippers of Allaah – it is upon you to fear Allaah regarding your own selves, and with regards to the daughters, sisters, and other women whom Allaah has been placed under your charge and authority, and that the Muslims should come in order to realise the good and the happiness for the society, and to follow the path that will increase the good and lessen the crimes. And you should know that you will all be questioned and held to account about your actions, as Allaah – the Most High – said:

“By your Lord! We shall call them all to account for all that they used to do.” [Soorah al-Hijr 15:92].

And Allaah – the Mighty and Majestic – said:

“And to Allaah belongs all that is in the heavens and the earth, that He may punish those who do evil with that which they have done; and reward those who do good with Paradise which is best.” [Soorah an-Najm 53:31].

So hasten in getting your sons and daughters married, following in the footsteps of your Prophet sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, and the footsteps of the noble Sahaabah (Companions) radiallaahu ‘anhum, and all those who follow their path and guidance. I also advise you all not to seek excessive sums for the mahr (dowry), but rather be moderate in this, and that you strive to select pious and righteous people for marriage.

We ask Allaah to grant us the understanding of the Religion; grant us firmness upon it; and that He protects us and all the Muslims from the evil promptings of our own souls, and our evil resultant actions; and that He keeps away from us the deviating trials and discords, whether open or hidden. And We ask Allaah also to correct all those who have a position of authority over the affairs of the Muslims, and that He rectifies them. Indeed he is the One having the power to do so. And may Allaah extol and send blessings of peace upon Muhammad, and upon his Family, Companions and all those who follow them.

————————————————————–

1. Majmoo’ Fataawaa wa Maqaalaat Mutanawwi’ah (3/100- 103).

2. Saheeh: Related by Ahmad (5/411). It was authenticated by Ibn Taymiyyah in Kitaabul-lqtidaa (p.69).

3. Related by al-Bukhaaree (10/351) and Muslim (no.215), from ‘Amr ibn al ‘Aas radiallaahu ‘anhu.

4. Hasan: Related by at-Tirmidhee (no.1085), from Abu Haatim al-Muzanee and Abu Hurayrah radiallaahu ‘anhumaa. It was authenticated by al-Albaanee in Irwaa’ul-Ghaleel (no.1868).

5. Related by al-Bukhaaree (4/106) and Muslim (no.1400), from Ibn Mas’ood radiallaahu ‘anhu.

 

 

Married life between extravagance and stinginess


Posted byadministrator on Thursday, April 17 @ 13:04:16 EET
Contributed by
administrator

The following are phrases often heard from one spouse about the other: “My husband is stingy”; “My husband does not buy me my necessities”; “My husband gives money to his family and does not give me anything”; “My wife exaggerates in her spending”; “My wife does not care about saving, nor does she care how hard I work”; “My wife asks for too many things,” and so on.

It is difficult to find a household without such problems; the husband accuses the wife of exaggerating in her expenditure and she accuses him of being miserly; this leads to fights and disturbs married life, and could, in some cases, lead to divorce and the complete destruction of the family structure.

This problem, in all cases, occurs due to the lack of understanding of the rights that each spouse has upon the other. One of the greatest rights of the wife upon her husband is that he provides for her, and his spending and providing for her is considered Islamically to be one of the best ways that he could spend in charity; this includes food, drink, clothing, housing and anything else a wife might need to maintain her strength and live a normal life.

Allaah informs us that it is the duty of men to provide for their wives, and this is one of the reasons men were made superior to women, as Allaah Says (what means): “Men are in charge of women by [right of] what Allaah has given one over the other and what they spend [for maintenance] from their wealth…” [Quran 4: 34]

There are many evidences from the Quran, the Sunnah and the consensus of the Muslim scholars proving that it is mandatory upon a man to provide for his wife. In the Quran, Allaah Says (what means): “…And upon the father is their [i.e. the mothers’] provision and their clothing according to what is acceptable. No person is charged with more than his capacity…” [Quran 2: 233]

There are many narrations in the Sunnah proving the obligation upon the man to provide for his wife, children and anyone else who lives under his guardianship, such as:

· Jaabir Ibn ‘Abdullaah (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated that the Prophet (sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam) said in his Farewell Pilgrimage: “Fear Allaah and treat women kindly – they are like captives in your hands. You have been entrusted with them and are able to enjoy them based on the contract you have conducted. Their right upon you is that you should treat them well in the matter of food and clothing.” [Muslim]

· `Amr Ibn Al-Ahwas Al-Jushami (may Allah be pleased with him) reported that he had heard the Prophet (sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam) saying on his Farewell Pilgrimage, after praising and glorifying Allaah and admonishing the people: “Fear Allaah and treat women kindly – they are like captives in your hands. If they become rebellious in their behaviour, then do not share their beds and beat them lightly; but if they return to obedience then you do not have recourse to anything else against them. You have rights over your wives and they have their rights over you. Your right is that they shall not permit anyone you dislike to enter your home, and their right is that you should treat them well in the matter of food and clothing.” [At-Tirmithi]

· Mu`aawiyah Ibn Haydah (may Allah be pleased with him) reported: “I asked the Messenger of Allaah (sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam) “What right can any wife demand of her husband?” He replied: “Give her food when you eat, clothe her when you clothe yourself, do not strike her on the face, and do not revile her or separate from her except within the house.” [Abu Daawood] Imaam Al-Khattaabi, may Allaah have mercy upon, him said: “This proves the obligation of spending on wives and providing clothing for them, but it should be in accordance to the ability of the husband. The Prophet made this mandatory whether the husband is present or travelling, and if he is unable to, then it remains a debt on him which he must repay whenever he returns.”

· Wahb (may Allah have mercy on him)said: “One of the servants of ‘Abdullaah Ibn ‘Umar (may Allah be pleased with him) said to him (i.e., to Ibn ‘Umar): `I plan to stay here in Jerusalem for a month.` So Ibn ‘Umar enquired: `Did you leave enough to sustain your family during your absence?` He replied: `No`, so Ibn ‘Umar (may Allah be pleased with him) said: `Go back and give them what will suffice them during your absence because I heard the Prophet (sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam) say: “Neglecting one’s own dependents is reason enough for a man to be committing a sin.” [Abu Daawood] In the narration of this story found in the book of Imaam Muslim (may Allah have mercy on him) the Messenger of Allaah said: “It is enough sin for a person to hold back the due of one whose provision is in his hand.”

· Abu Hurayrah (may Allah be pleased with him) said: “I heard the Prophet (sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam) say: “It is far better for you to take your rope, go to the mountains, (cut some firewood), carry it on your back, sell it and thereby save your face (from shame) than beg from people, regardless of whether they give to you or refuse you. The upper hand is better than the lower one (i.e., the spending hand is better than the receiving hand); and begin (charity) with those who are under your care.” It was asked: `Who are those that are under my care?’ He replied: “Your wife and those (others) under your guardianship.” [Muslim]

Imaam Ibn Qudaamah, Imaam Ibn Al-Munthir and others (may Allah have mercy on them) have said: “It is the consensus of the Muslim scholars that spending on the wife is mandatory upon the husband, unless the wife is disobedient.”

The abovementioned texts prove that it is mandatory for one to provide for his family and household and care for them. There are many prophetic narrations indicating the virtue of spending and providing for one’s family and household, such as the narration of Abu Moosaa Al-Ansaari (may Allah be pleased with him) who reported that the Messenger of Allaah (sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam) said: “Whenever one spends something in charity on his family, sincerely for the sake of Allaah, he will be rewarded for it” [Al-Bukhaari]

Imaam Ibn Hajr (may Allah have mercy on him) said: “Providing for and spending on one’s family is mandatory even though it is referred to as charity in the texts; the reason for it being referred to as charity is so that people will not mistakenly think that they will not attain reward for spending in such a way. Allaah clarified this so that people will not spend in charity externally until they have sufficed their own household and encouraged them by calling it charity.”

Sa`d Ibn Maalik (may Allah be pleased with him) reported that Messenger of Allaah (sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam) said to him: “You will not spend anything in charity for the sake of Allaah except that you will be rewarded for it; even the morsel of food which you feed your wife.” [Al-Bukhaari & Muslim]

Abu Hurayrah (may Allah be pleased with him) reported: “The Messenger of Allaah (sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam) said: “(of the following types of expenditure): A Deenaar (i.e., a gold unit of currency) which you spend in Allaah’s way, or to free a slave, or as a charity you give to a needy person, or to support your family, the one yielding the greatest reward is that which you spend on your family.” [Muslim]

Ka’b Ibn ‘Ajrah (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated: “The Prophet (sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam) once passed by a group of his Companions and saw one of them working hard while the rest of them were saying: `It would have been rewarding if this hard work was exerted for the sake of Allaah.’ So the Prophet (sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam) remarked: “If he has gone out of his house striving to provide for his young children, then it is considered as for the sake of Allaah; and if he has gone out striving to provide for his old parents, then it is considered as for the sake of Allaah; and if he has gone out striving in order to suffice himself from having to ask others for money, then it is considered as for the sake of Allaah; but if he has gone out (for the sake of) boasting and showing off to others, then it is considered as (going out) for the sake of Satan.” [At-Tabaraani]

Our righteous Salaf (may Allah have mercy on him) understood this obligation very well and it reflected in their statements, such as the saying of the devout Imaam ‘Abdullaah Ibn Al-Mubaarak (may Allah have mercy on him) when he said: “Nothing can equal this in other forms of spending – even spending in Jihaad for the sake of Allaah.”

On the other hand, the wife has to realise that her husband is only obliged to spend according to his ability and financial condition, as Allaah Says (what means): “Let a man of wealth spend from his wealth, and he whose provision is restricted — let him spend from what Allaah has given him. Allaah does not charge a soul except [according to] what He has given it. Allaah will bring about, after hardship, ease [i.e. relief].” [Quran 65: 7]

Therefore, she has no right to overburden her husband with difficult demands, because this contradicts the kindness that spouses should have with each other. Additionally, Allaah warns us against excessive spending, saying (what means): “Indeed, the wasteful are brothers of the devils, and ever has Satan been to his Lord ungrateful.” [Quran 17: 27]

The wife should take into consideration the financial condition of her husband and be conservative in her spending and demands; she should sacrifice certain requests lest she might cause her husband emotional anguish.

Conversely, the husband should not be stingy if Allaah provides him with wealth; he should not deprive his wife of what other women of her social status have of adornment, clothing and so forth, according to his ability; he should also never remind her of what he is doing for her. The husband should also know that financial inability can be made up for by kind words to the wife. When Allaah mentioned kindness to kinfolks, He highlighted how those who do not have financial ability should behave and speak, saying (what means): “And if you [must] turn away from them [i.e. the needy] awaiting mercy from your Lord which you expect, then speak to them a gentle word.” [Quran 17: 28]

Imaam Ibn Katheer (may Allah have mercy on him) said, commenting upon this verse: “Meaning, when one’s relatives or others whom he is commanded to support ask for help while one has nothing to give them, then he should promise them while being kind and gentle in tone that when Allaah provides for him, he will give to them.”

Finally, both spouses should remember that kind words and good manners make the other forget the hardships and tight financial situation they are in, and help them endure patiently.

 

 

 

 

 

Advice to women regarding marriage – II
Posted byadministrator on Friday, February 22 @ 22:34:07 EET
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What to do upon receiving a proposal:

The young woman should pray Istikhaarah (i.e., the Prayer of Guidance) and not to ask others to pray it on her behalf, as some women do, as this is a baseless act and an innovation in the religion. Furthermore, she should seek the advice of trustworthy people and inquire about the person.

Imaam Ahmad (may Allah have mercy on him) reported the story of Julaybeeb (may Allah be pleased with him) who was sent by the Prophet (sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam) to one of the families of the Ansaar (i.e., the residents of Madeenah) to give him their daughter in marriage. Julaybeeb (may Allah be pleased with him) was very impoverished and so the young woman’s mother reused the offer, but the young woman spoke out and agreed to marry him because he was sent to her by the Prophet (sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam) himself. The result was that she never suffered in any way, and that there was no other woman of the Ansaar who was wealthier than her. This is because Julaybeeb (may Allah be pleased with him) was killed in the very next battle that occurred after his marriage, having killed seven disbelievers in it. Upon finding his body, the Prophet (sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam) carried him and buried him with his own hands. He (sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam) also supplicated for the widow, saying: “O Allaah! Pour Your blessings upon her and do not make her suffer in life.” It was due to this supplication that she never suffered, in any way, and that there was no woman from the Ansaar wealthier than her.

If the man proposing wishes that his future wife give up her studies or job after marriage, and he is a suitable man, then this should not hamper the marriage. Also, if the man finds such a young woman to be a suitable one, he should not reconsider marrying her due to this, as he could marry her and then convince her after marriage to give it up.

Similarly, the family and the young woman should not refuse a proposal from a man due to him having children from a previous marriage.

Some young women overlook certain matters, such as the man’s looks and wealth, only to have misgivings and regret their decision later. Therefore, the young woman should be absolutely sure before giving her approval and be honest with herself when she makes her decision. Moreover, she should be content with him based on religious convictions. Some women always advise their friends regarding the matter of being a second wife, stating that it is an integral part of Islaam and that they should not refuse a man simply because he is already married; however, when they themselves get married as second wives, they act very differently to the advice they gave others, due to their covetousness.

The young woman should be a facilitating factor in her marriage; she should, for example, refuse to set unbearable conditions or a high dowry, but if her family insists, then she should nominally agree and then relieve her husband of such difficulties later on.

Some women behave arrogantly towards their husbands due to holding advanced degrees, having a noble lineage, the wealth of their families, or their beauty. The result of this arrogance is that they act rebelliously towards their husbands and thus acquire sin.

Fears of some young women in the process of marriage:

Some young women fear the imminent loss of their close friends and sisters due to their impending marriage. This may cause them to hate the future husband, perhaps causing them, prior to the wedding night, to go as far as to seek to annul the marriage contract.

This could happen for many reasons, such as:

· Improperly assessing the consequences of such actions.

· Having an irresponsible and reckless attitude.

· Favouring the joy of the short term over the long term one of having children and the establishment of a happy marital life.

Also, the husband should not deprive his wife of her female friends and relatives. The Prophet (sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam) would allow the female friends of ‘Aa’ishah (may Allah be pleased with her) to visit her.

When a young woman is being proposed to, she should educate herself about the rulings of marriage, the rights of the husband, the rights of the wife, and how to live in kindness and harmony with her spouse. On the other hand, she should not concern herself with studying the sexual aspects of marital life until the marriage contract is completed.

The wife’s role in her home:

This is to serve her husband, bear, nurse, and nurture his children, and be a housewife.

If a woman is used to being immersed in the study and propagation of Islaam, and then marries whilst not clearly having in mind a role as a wife, she may begin feeling, very shortly after marriage, that her new role as a wife is a trivial one. This may cause her to begin leaving her house to resume her former lifestyle. It is vital, however, that she understand her role and obligation as a wife and the reward of fulfilling them. Anas (may Allah be pleased with him) reported that the Prophet (sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam) said: “If a woman prays her five daily prayers, fasts her month (i.e. the month of Ramadhaan), guards her private parts and obeys her husband, she will enter Paradise from any of its gates that she wishes.” [Abu Nu’aym]

The married woman must persevere through the hardships of pregnancy, pre-delivery contractions and the agony of the delivery itself. Some women refuse to go through such hardships and take birth control pills to prevent pregnancy, or, if they do get pregnant, prefer a caesarean section over a normal delivery.

‘Amr Ibn Hijr (may Allah have mercy on him) married Kindah Bint ‘Awf Ash-Shaybaani (may Allah have mercy on him). On her wedding night, her mother, Umaamah Bint Al-Haarith (may Allah be pleased with her) took her aside and advised her: “Dear daughter! You are leaving the environment which you are accustomed to and departing from the place you grew up in to a partner whom you are unfamiliar with. If a woman had no need of a husband due to her parents sufficing her, then you would be the last person to require a husband, but women were created to be the partners of men, and men were created to be the partners of women. Act like his slave, and he will become like your slave. Uphold the following ten matters and you will find them to be provisions: The first and second are to be content with what he provides and to listen to and obey him. The third and the fourth are to make sure that all he sees and smells from you are pleasing to him, so he should not see you in a displeasing appearance, nor smell anything but a fine fragrance from you. The fifth and the sixth are to comfort him in his sleep and food, because repeated hunger and lack of sleep will enflame his anger. The seventh and the eighth are to protect his wealth and take care of his children; the focal point regarding wealth is to have good judgement in spending it, and that regarding the children is to properly nurture them. The ninth and the tenth are to not disobey his commands or disclose his secrets, because when you disobey him you intimidate him, and if you disclose his secrets you would not know what he may do to you. Do not be joyful in front of him when he is upset, or express sadness if he is happy.”

‘Abdullaah Ibn Ja’far (may Allah have mercy on him) addressed his daughter saying: “Avoid jealousy, as it is the key to your divorce; avoid complaint, as it instigates anger; adorn yourself for him, and make sure you wash away any bad odours by frequent bathing.”

Pre-marital errors on the part of women:

· Freely talking to males on the telephone and being open with male relatives.

· Being over confident and rejecting many of those who propose.

· Not differentiating between wisdom and fast rejection.

· Not having the criterion by which to judge the proposing person clearly in mind.

Finally, many young women wish to get married but they waste their time daydreaming and wishfully thinking about the ideal husband. This is all fruitless; the best way for them to attain a good husband would be to busy themselves in supplicating to Allaah to provide such a person.

 

 

Advice to women regarding marriage – I
Posted byadministrator on Monday, February 18 @ 21:35:02 EET
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Abu Hurayrah, may Allah be pleased with him, reported that the Prophet, sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam, said: “If a man whose religious commitment and moral conduct you approve of proposes for marriage to your daughter, then marry her to him; otherwise, trials will prevail and great corruption will spread upon the earth.” [At-Tirmithi & Ibn Maajah] Imaam As-Sindi, may Allah have mercy on him, commented upon this narration, saying: “A person’s religious commitment assures fulfilling his obligations, and his good moral conduct assures his kind treatment of others.”

The spread of corruption and evil is the natural result of people refusing to marry their daughters off to men whose religious practice and morals are good, preferring instead to delay and marry them to those with more wealth, or from a more honourable lineage. This results in many young men and women remaining unmarried, which causes fornication to prevail, immorality to overwhelm, and chastity to vanish.

Imaam At-Teebi, may Allah have mercy on him, said: “This narration supports the ruling of Imaam Maalik over the others, in which he (i.e. Maalik) said that competence for marriage should be based only on religious commitment and moral conduct.”

Some scholars have stated that if the guardian repeatedly rejects men who propose for marriage to his daughter for no legitimate Islamic reason, then this could nullify his guardianship over her.

Some women set impossible conditions for future husbands, such as him memorising the entire Quran as well as the Hadeeth collections of Al-Bukhaari, Muslim and so on. Moreover, some of them may even go as far as to demand a man whose character is like that of Imaam Al-Bukhaari, may Allah have mercy on him.

This is totally incorrect; all a man has to meet are the two conditions set in the abovementioned narration; namely, religious commitment and a high moral character.

How can pious men and women be brought together in marriage?

The righteous men and women in the community should play a strong role in this. For example, the wife could become a contact for the women and the husband for the men. The young women should not give up the condition of the man being religious on the pretext that they will work on him and transform him to a pious man after marriage, unless the man is known to adhere, in general, to his Islamic obligations, as well as having noble morals and shunning sins. In such a case, he may be a candidate worth considering.

People’s stance when asked about the man proposing:

Some people, when asked about a man who is proposing to their daughter, give general answers and avoid being precise. They say things like: ‘He is a nice man’, ‘He is a kind person’, ‘His father is a good man and his grandfather was religious’, ‘Much good is expected from him and he is handsome’, ‘He is polite and wealthy’ and so on. It is after the marriage takes place that the bitter reality surfaces and the young woman come to know him for who he really is, only after it is too late.

Others conceal the faults of the proposing man when asked about him due to the fear of him, or what he may do if he found out, or because they think that to do otherwise would be to backbite; but the Prophet, sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam, said, when asked by Faatimah Bint Qays, may Allah be pleased with her, about two Companions, may Allah be pleased with them, who had proposed marriage to her: “Abu Jahm is a man who never lowers his stick (i.e. he beats his wives), and as for Abu Sufyaan, he is extremely poor and possesses no wealth.” She said: “I like neither of them” The Prophet, sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam, said: “Marry Usaamah Bin Zayd” So she married him and Allaah blessed their marriage, granting her a joyful life.

The one being asked should clarify everything he knows about the person who is proposing without exaggeration, and should fear Allaah regarding what he says. He should mention his merits as well as his faults; he should mention only that which he is certain of and act as if the young woman is his own daughter or sister. This is because marriage is a long term commitment and not an interim one. Marriage is a relationship that is meant to last until the grave, unless there is a valid reason to end it; and divorce frequently occurs when people marry their daughter to a person whom they do not know well enough.

The behaviour of some young women who seek marriage:

Some young women offer themselves in marriage to young men over the telephone, which is disastrous as the man may be a sinner, and some sins are more lethal than others. For example, if the man deals in Ribaa (i.e. interest or usury) then his and his family’s provision, food, drinks and clothing will be ill-gotten. Moreover, even a sinner would not typically marry a woman who offers herself to him on the telephone. He may play around with her for a while, but when he is serious in his search for a wife, he will seek a chaste and well-mannered woman. A man who had such a friend was amazed at seeing him marrying a young woman who was fully adherent to the Hijaab; upon asking why he did so, the friend replied: “I wish to marry a woman whom I would be sure of not finding in bed with another man upon returning home one day.” This is how men perceive young women who freely and easily talk to them on the telephone.

The young woman and her family or guardian must investigate the man who is proposing to her so that they can discover whether or not he is putting on an act in order to appear as if he is a committed Muslim.

Histories:

It is not a condition for either of them to inform the other of their previous sins, especially if they have sincerely repented and then adhered to piety.

The vitalness of transparency:

It is very important that both the man and the woman are clear with one another from the very beginning and agree on everything before the contract is finalised.

If the family refuses the proposing man to see the daughter, then he should, at the very least, get a clear description of her.

 

 

Choosing a Husband
Posted byadministrator on Sunday, January 27 @ 19:16:35 EET
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Question: What are the most important factors for a woman in choosing a husband? If she rejects a righteous man for some worldly reasons, will she be punished by Allaah?

Answer:

Praise be to Allaah.

The most important factors for a woman in choosing a husband are his attitude/behaviour and his commitment to religion. Wealth and lineage are secondary matters. The most important thing is that the potential husband should be religious and have a good attitude, because if a man has religious commitment and a good attitude, a woman has nothing to lose: if he keeps her (remains married to her), he will keep her on a reasonable basis, and if he divorces her, he will set her free on a reasonable basis. Moreover, a man who is religious and has a good attitude will be a blessing to her and her children, for they will learn good manners and religion from him. But if the prospective husband is not like that (is not religious), she should keep away from him, especially those who take the matter of prayer lightly or who are known to drink alcohol. We seek refuge with Allaah.

As for those who do not pray at all, they are kuffaar and it is not permissible for them to marry believing women. It is important for the woman to focus on the matter of attitude and religious commitment. With regard to the matter of lineage, this is a bonus. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “If there comes to you (to propose marriage to your daughter etc.) a man with whose religious commitment and attitude you are pleased, then marry (your daughter) to him.”

But if you can manage to ensure compatibility (in terms of lineage and socio-economic status, etc.) as well, then this is better.

From the Fataawa of Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen, from the book Fataawa al-Mar’ah

 

Men are the protectors and maintainers of women


Posted byAdministrator on Monday, December 03 @ 19:32:01 EET
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Sheikh Salman al-Oadah

Allah says: “Men are the protectors and maintainers of women because of what Allah has preferred one with over the other and because of what they spend to support them from their wealth.” [Sûrah al-Nisâ’: 34]

What does it mean that men are “protectors and maintainers” of women?

To answer this question, let us first look at the Arabic word that we are translating as “protectors and maintainers”. This word is “qawwâmûn” the plural of “qawwâm”.

This word – qawwâm – in turn, is an emphatic form of the word “qayyim”, which means a person who manages the affairs of others. The qayyim of a people is the one who governs their affairs and steers their course. Likewise, the qayyim of a woman is either her husband or her guardian – the one who has to look after her and ensure that her needs are met.

When Allah says: “Men are the qawwâmûn of women…” it means – and Allah knows best – that men are held liable for handling the affairs of women and are responsible for the women under their care. A husband, therefore, has the responsibility of taking care of his wife, protecting her, defending her honor, and fulfilling her needs regarding her religion and her worldly life. It does not mean – as all too many people have falsely assumed – that he has the right to behave obstinately towards her, compel her, subject her to his will, suppress her individuality, and thus heinously negate her identity.

His status as protector and maintainer is pure responsibility, pure liability, and not so much a position of authority. It requires from him that he uses his good sense, thinks carefully about what he does, and exercises patience. It means that he cannot be hasty and offhanded in his decisions. It does not mean that he can disregard his wife’s opinions and belittle her good person.

Why does Islam make men the protectors and maintainers of women?

The verse gives us two reasons why men are given this burden to shoulder. Allah says: “…because of what Allah has preferred one with over the other…” and “…because of what they spend to support them from their wealth.”

A problem arises when it is said that men have a preference to women. Then we see all those organizations, establishments, and activists who call to women’s equality stirring into motion, jumping up ready to fight over this point, and going off on all kinds of tangents in their thinking. Rather, they should pause long enough to properly understand what it means when Allah says: “…because of what Allah has preferred one with over the other …” This proper understanding can only be had in the light of the Qur’ân and Sunnah and their sound application.

Those who go overboard in asserting the rights of women and claim that the woman in Islam is oppressed and that Islam does not do her justice are driven to the point where they transgress against the very texts of the Qur’ân and Sunnah. In the name of “equality”, they demand absolute uniformity in matters of inheritance, in governance, and in everything else wherein a distinction between the sexes is made, sometimes taking matters so far that it is the men who have to chase after the hope of equality with women.

This brings us back to the question of what the verse is saying. Is it indicating that there is some inherent preference of men over women, something that is built into their very natures? The scholars of Qur’ânic commentary have taken two approaches to this matter.

The first approach is to refer the matter of the verse back to the natural makeup of men and women, with respect to their intellects, their different manners of thinking, and their natural strengths. They found that men, by nature, are more hot-blooded, tending more towards strength and severity, while women’s natures are cooler, tending more towards gentleness and weakness.

The second approach is to look at it from a legal angle – that Allah has imposed upon men to pay dowries to the women they wish to marry and has made men liable to spend on women and provide for them. This is the preference that men have over them. Likewise, Allah has placed prophecy with men only, as there has never been a woman prophet. In the same way, Allah has made the offices of supreme political authority and the obligations of jihad the exclusive domain of men.

The issue of testimony is also brought up in this regard, for Allah says: “And bring to witness two witnesses from among your men. And if there are not two men available, then a man and two women from those whom you accept as witnesses – so that if one of them errs, the other can remind her.” [Sûrah al-Baqarah: 282]

Others using this approach have cited certain acts of worship, like the fact that the Friday prayer and congregational prayers are prescribed only for men and not made compulsory on women.

The fact that men can have four wives while women cannot have more than one husband, or the fact that men have the exclusive option of immediate divorce have also been advanced as an interpretations.

With respect to both of these approaches, there are two observations that we can make:

The first is that the followers of both approaches agree on a preference of men over woman on the basis of Allah’s words: “…because of what they spend to support them from their wealth.”

The second is that the opinions of the commentators regarding whether or not the preferentiality refers to the natures of men and women is all based on their discretionary opinions (ijtihâd) with respect to their understanding of the verse. In any event, it would be fair to say that Allah has indeed singled out men for certain distinctions – prophethood, supreme political office, jihad, and military service, among other things – and this is because men have a nature different than that of women. This is a conclusion that all reasonable people would have to agree upon. The obligation imposed upon men by Islam to protect and maintain women should be seen in the context of the difference in their natural makeup and that the purpose for this is to secure the best interests of women.

Allah’s laws always accord with nature and take into consideration the unique gifts that Allah has bestowed upon each half that makes up the human whole – the man and the woman, so that those gifts can be employed to their maximum effectiveness.

We must remain cognizant of the fact that both men and women are Allah’s creations. And that Allah would never oppress any of His creatures. He prepares each of His creations to the purpose that he intends for it and bestows upon it the innate abilities needed to carry out that purpose.

Allah has made it of the exclusive qualities of women that they fall pregnant, bear children, and nurse them. Therefore, she is by nature burdened with the care of what the union between a man and a woman brings about, and it is an immense responsibility. Not only is it a heavy responsibility, it is a critical one, not something that can be approached lightly, without the physical, mental, and emotional preparation that Allah has bestowed exclusively upon women.

On this basis, it is only just that Allah would burden the other half of humanity – the men – with the task of fulfilling the needs of those women and protecting them, and that He would bestow upon men the innate physical, mental, and emotional qualities that would allow them to excel in doing what is required of them. Moreover, he would require men to be financially liable for the women under his care, since this is a necessary consequence of the duties he has to carry out. These two elements are, essentially, what the verse is talking about.

It is interesting to point out that the examples given by the commentators who follow the legal approach – things like prophethood, supreme political office, military duty, and carrying out certain religious rites like the call to prayer and congregational worship – are merely consequential of the natural dispensation of men. The reason these duties are suited to men is because men are not otherwise preoccupied with domestic burdens that would prevent them from carrying them out.

Though prophethood, for instance, is an honor of the highest degree, it is by no means the cause of why men are the protectors and maintainers of women. The distinction of prophethood can neither be derived from these duties, nor is it remotely indicative of any general preference of men with regards to women. It is but a fact that all the prophets were men.

Likewise, when we look at religious duties like making the call to prayer, leading the prayers, and giving the Friday sermon, we must acknowledge that these duties were given to men by the decree of Islamic Law. In no way do they necessitate that men are distinguished with every other possible legal ruling. Had Allah instead delegated these religious duties to women, this would not in any way have prevented men from being burdened with their protection and maintenance.

I must reiterate the point that the protection and maintenance given to men over women in no way implies the denial of the woman’s identity, whether in the context of the home or her position in society at large. It is merely a role to be played by men within the family environment so that this important social institution can be properly managed, safeguarded, and upheld. The presence of a manager in a given institution does not negate or diminish the individuality or the rights of the others who share in it or of those who work for it. Islam has clearly defined what the protection and maintenance of women entails for men – the care and protection, the manners and behaviors, and all liabilities associated with it.

How the Prophet (peace be upon him) put this duty into practice

The Prophet (peace be upon him) was not an emperor who lorded over his family. When we look carefully at his life, we would find it the most eloquent testimony of what we have stated above – that a man’s protection and maintenance of women in no way entails obstinacy, compulsion, or subjugation.

`Â’ishah said about her husband: “When he was at home, he was totally involved in housework.”

He was very clement. One of his wives woke up in the middle of the night and discovered that the Prophet (peace be upon him) was not beside her, though it was her night to have him with her. She tells us that she locked the door on him, thinking that he had gone to one of his other wives on her night. When he returned after a short while to find that she had locked him out of the house and asked her to open the door, she confronting him on why he had gone out. He calmly told her that he simply had needed to go to the bathroom.

On many occasions, his wives would argue with each other in his presence. He never got angry when they did. He always solved their problems with wisdom, gentleness, and sensitivity, never with harshness. This shows us what a man’s role as protector and maintainer of women is all about.

On one occasion, his wife Hafsah chided her co-wife Safiyyah by calling her “the daughter of a Jew”. This was true, because Safiyyah’s father, Hubayy b. Akhtab, was in fact a Jew who had died without ever accepting Islam. Still, such a comment was meant as a take on Safiyyah’s person, which was only more hurtful as it was coming from her co-wife. So when she heard what Hafsah had said, she started to cry.

The Prophet (peace be upon him) then came in and asked her why she was crying. She said: “Hafsah called me the daughter of a Jew.”

To this the Prophet (peace be upon him) replied: “Verily, you are the daughter of a Prophet, your uncle was also a Prophet, and you are the wife of a Prophet, so what does she have over you to boast about?”

He then turned to Hafsah and said: “Fear Allah, O Hafsah.”

In an alternate narration, the Prophet is reported to have turned to Safiyyah and said: “Why didn’t you say: ‘So how can you be better than me? Muhammad is my husband. Aaron is my father, and Moses is my uncle.”

Safiyyah was a descendant of Aaron (peace be upon him). So, when Hafsah insinuated that Safiyyah’s being the daughter of a Jew was something bad, the Prophet (peace be upon him) showed Hafsah another way of looking at it: that Safiyyah was the descendant of Prophet Aaron and that her uncle was Moses, and that her husband was Muhammad (peace be upon them all), so there was no reason for her to be ashamed.

Anyone who would take the man’s status in Islam as the protector and maintainer of women and use it as a pretext to oppress women is committing a crime against Islam.

Islam has guaranteed women their rights as individuals, including their right to have and express their own opinions. The Sunnah is full of examples of this.

We have, for instance, where Khawlah bint Tha`labah complained to the Prophet (peace be upon him) about her husband who foreswore ever again having sex with her by the old pagan custom of claiming her to be like the back of his mother, whereupon the following verse of the Qur’ân was revealed: “Allah has indeed heard the words of the woman who pleads with you concerning her husband and carries her complaint (in prayer) to Allah…” [Sûrah al-Mujâdlah: 1] followed by the verses abolishing that oppressive custom.

We can look at the case of Khunsâ’, who’s father married her off with her disapproval, so the Prophet (peace be upon him) had her marriage annulled.

In another instance, a young woman complained to `Â’ishah, saying: “My father married me to his brother’s son in order to raise his social status. However, I hate it.” When the Prophet (peace be upon him) heard her complaint, he gave her the option of having the marriage annulled. She said: “O Messenger of Allah! I have accepted what my father has done. However, I wanted to know that women had a choice in the matter.”

Then we have the story of Burayrah and her husband Mughîth. Both of them were slaves. When she acquired her freedom, she had the legal right of staying with her husband who was still a slave, or of leaving him. She chose to leave him and he began following after her, crying for her to return to him. The Prophet (peace be upon him) said to her: “If only you would go back to him.”

She asked: “O Messenger of Allah! Are you commanding me?”

He said: “No. I am only pleading on his behalf.”

She replied: “Then I have no use for him.”

On another occasion, a woman came to the Prophet (peace be upon him), complaining that men are given the opportunities of military duty, congregational worship, and other things. The Prophet (peace be upon him) let it be known that he was very pleased with her question and with her manner of address.

During the reign of the Caliph `Umar b. al-Khattâb, we have the story of a woman who rebuked him while he was on the pulpit about a decree he wished to make. To this, he said publicly: “`Umar is mistaken and this woman is correct.”

We can go on citing examples of women’s right to speak their own minds, even before the heads of state, not to mention their husbands. From this, we should be able to keep the status of men as protectors and maintainers of women in the proper perspective.

 

Pointers on Choosing Marriage Partners


Posted byAdministrator on Thursday, June 15 @ 05:18:16 EEST
Contributed by
Administrator

In light of the experience of the past years, it is time to take stock and try to halt the ever-mounting tide of divorces among Muslims. It is not unusual today to find Muslim women (and even an occasional Muslim man) who, by the time they are 30 or 35, have been married three or four times, their children suffering again and again through the trauma of fatherless and broken homes.

Accordingly, we may list a few essential points to be considered by both brothers and sisters in the process of choosing a partner in life (although the masculine pronoun has been used throughout for the sake of simplicity, the following is generally equally applicable to both men and women).

1. Du’a. Unceasingly ask help and guidance from Allah, Most High, in the matter of finding and choosing a mate. As often as you feel it necessary, pray Salaah al-Istikhara, Islam’s special prayer for guidance, in order to reach a suitable decision.

2. Consult your heart. Listen to what your inner voice, the ‘radar’ which Allah has given you to guide you, tells you about the prospective partner. It is likely to be more correct than your mind, which often plays tricks and can rationalise almost any- thing. For many people, first impressions are often the most accurate.

3. Enquire. Find out the reason why this man wants to marry you. Is he interested in you as an individual or will just any person do? Why is he not doing the logical thing, that is, to marry someone from his culture? If there is evidence that the primary reason for this marriage, despite claims to the contrary, is for convenience (greencard, money, property, etc.), forget it. This spells trouble.

4. Get to know your prospective partner, within the limits of what is permissible in Islam, before deciding on marriage. Just ‘ seeing’ someone once or twice in the company of others, who may be anxious for this marriage to take place, is simply not enough under today’s conditions, where two per- sons of totally dis-similar backgrounds are meeting each other without the safeguards of families. Without violating Islam’s prohibition about being alone, try to understand his nature, what makes him tick, his temperament, what he might be like to live with.

5. Talk to several people who know your prospective partner, not just one, or have someone whom you can trust do this for you. Ask about him from various people, not just from his friends because they may conceal facts to do him a favour. And ask not only about his background, career, Islamicity, etc., but about such crucial matters as whether he gets angry easily; what he does when he is ‘mad'; whether he is patient, polite, considerate; how he gets along with people; how he relates to the opposite sex; what sort of relationship he has with his mother and father; whether he is fond of children; what his personal habits are, etc. And find out about his plans for the future from people who know him. Do they coincide with what he has told you? Go into as much detail as possible. Check out his plans for the future – where you will live and what your lifestyle will be, his attitudes toward money and possessions and the like. If you can’t get answers to such crucial questions from people who know him, ask him yourself and try to make sure he is not just saying what he knows you want to hear. Too many people will make all kinds of promises before marriages in order to secure the partner they want but afterwards forget that they ever made them, (this naturally applies equally to women as to men).

6. Find out about his family, his relations with his parents, brothers and sisters. What will his obligations be to them in the future? How will this affect where and under what conditions you will live? What are the character and temperament of each of his parents? Will they live with you or you with them? And are they pleased with his prospective marriage to you or not? Although it may not be the case in most Western marriages, among Muslims such issues are often crucial to the success or failure of a marriage, and answers to these questions need to be satisfactory to ensure a peaceful married life.

7. Understand each other’s expectations. Try to get a sense of your prospective partner’s under- standing of the marriage relationship, how he will behave in various situations, and what he wants of you as his spouse. These are issues which should be discussed clearly and unambiguously as the negotiations progress, not left to become sources of disharmony after the marriage because they were never brought up beforehand. If you are too shy to ask certain questions, have a person you trust do it for you. At an advanced stage of the negotiations, such a discussion should include such matters as birth control, when children are to be expected, how they are to be raised, how he feels about helping with housework and with the children’s upbringing, whether or not you may go to school or work, relations with his family and yours, and other vital issues.

8. See him interacting with others in various situations. The more varied conditions under which you are able to observe your prospective partner, the more clues you will have as to his mode of dealing with people and circumstances.

9. Find out what his understanding of Islam is and whether it is compatible with your own. This is a very important matter. Is he expecting you to do many things which you have not done up to this point? If he emphasises ” Haraams”, especially if you are a new Muslimah, and seems unable to tolerate your viewpoint, chances are your marriage will be in trouble unless you are flexible enough to accommodate yourself to his point of view and possibly a very restrictive lifestyle. Let him spell out to you clearly how he intends to practise Islam and how he wants you to practise it as his wife so there will be no misunderstandings later.

10. Don’t be in a hurry. So many marriages have broken because the partners are in such haste that they don’t take time to make such vital checks as the ones outlined above and rush into things. Shocking as it may seem, marriages between Muslims which are contracted and then broken within a week or a month or a year have become common place occurrences among us. Don’t add yourself to the list of marriage casualties because you couldn’t take time or were too desperate for marriage to find out about or get to know the person with whom you plan to spend the rest of your life.

11. Ask yourself, Do I want this man/woman to be the father/mother of my children? If it doesn’t feel just right to you, think it over again. Remember, marriage is not just for today or tomorrow but for life, and for the primary purpose of building a family. If the person in question doesn’t seem like the sort who would make a good parent, you are likely to find yourself struggling to raise your children without any help from him or her – or even with negative input – in the future.

12. Never allow yourself to be pressured or talked into a marriage. Your heart must feel good about it, not someone else’s. Again, allegations of “Islamicity” – he is pious, has a beard, frequents the Masjid, knows about Islam; she wears Hijab, does not talk to men- are not necessarily guarantees of a good partner for you or of a good marriage, but are only a part of a total picture. If an individual practises the Sunnah only in relation to worship or externals, chances are he /she has not really understood and is not really living Islam. Possessing the affection and Rahmah (mercy) which Islam enjoins between marriage partners is vital for a successful relationship, and these are the important traits to be looked for in a prospective partner.

13. Never consent to engaging in a marriage for a fixed period or in exchange for a sum of money. (Mut’a marriage). Such marriages are expressly forbidden in Islam and entering into them is a sinful act, as marriage must be entered into with a clear intention of it being permanent, for life, not for a limited and fixed duration.

If these guidelines are followed, Insha’ Allah the chances of making a mistake which may mar the remainder of your life may be minimised.

Choosing a marriage partner is a most serious matter, perhaps the most serious decision you will ever make in your life since your partner can cause you either to be successful or to fail miserably, in the tests of this life and, consequently, in the Here- after. This decision needs to be made with utmost care and caution, repeatedly seeking guidance from your Lord.

If everything checks out favourable, well and good, best wishes for happiness together here and in the Hereafter. If not, better drop the matter and wait. Allah your Lord knows all about you, His servant, and has planned your destiny and your partner for you. Be sure that He will bring you together when the time is right. As the Qur’an enjoins, you must be patient until He opens a way for you, and for your part you should actively explore various marriage leads and possibilities.

Two words addressed to brothers are in order here. If you are marrying or have married a recent convert to Islam, you must be very patient and supportive with her. Remember, Islam is new to her, and chances are that she will not be able to take on the whole of the Shari’ah at once – nor does Islam require this, if you look at the history of early Islam. In your wife ‘s efforts to conform herself to her new faith and culture, she needs time and a great deal of support, love, help and understanding from you, free of interference from outsiders. It is best to let her make changes at her own speed when her inner being is ready for them rather than demanding that she do this or that, even if it means that some time will elapse before she is ready to follow certain Islamic injunctions. If the changes come from within herself, they are likely to be sincere and permanent; otherwise, if she makes changes because of pressure from you or from others, she may always be unhappy with the situation and may look for ways out of it. You can help her by being consistent in your own behaviour. So many Muslims apply those parts of the Qur’an or Sunnah which suit them and abandon the rest, with resulting confusion in the minds of their wives and children. Thus, while firmly keeping the reins in your hands, you should look at your own faults, not hers, and be proud and happy with the efforts she is making. Make allowances, be considerate, and show your appreciation of the difficult task she is carrying out by every possible means. This will cause her to love and respect you, your culture, and Islam to grow infinitely faster than a harsh, dominating, forceful approach ever could.

Finally, a word of warning. Certain situations have occurred in which women, posing as Muslims (or perhaps actually having made Shahaadah), have deceived and made fools of numbers of Muslim men. Such women may be extremely cunning and devious, operating as poor, lonely individuals in need of help and/or husbands. The brothers who fall into this net may be shown false photos, given false information or promises, cheated in all sorts of ways, and finally robbed of anything the conniving lady can manage to take from them. As was said, it is wise to check out any prospective partner with local Muslims who know her.

Keep your eyes open and take your time. Hurrying into it for any reason whatsoever is the act of a foolish or careless person who has only himself or herself to blame if things go wrong. By Rabi’ah Hakeem

 

 

 

 

Family Planning & Birth Control In Islam
Posted byAdministrator on Tuesday, March 15 @ 22:35:01 EET
Contributed by
Administrator

By Jamaal Zarabozo

The question of family planning and birth control was discussed in detail by the Majma al-Fiqh al-Islaami. They had twenty three scholars research this topic and present their findings on this matter.

The participants involved represented many different trends and schools of thought. Among the participants were Muhammad Ali al-Baar, Ali al-Saaloos, Muhammad Saeed Ramadhan al-Booti, Abdullah al-Basaam, Hasan Hathoot and Muhammad Sayid Tantaawi. Their proceedings, papers and discussions may be found in Part One of the Fifth Volume of Majallah Majma al-Fiqh al-Islaami (1988/1409 A.H.). These proceedings are 748 pages all about the question of birth control and related issues.

The following are important points related to the issue of birth control in Islam. These were mentioned by some of the participants in the above program:

* The institution of marriage and the want to have children was the custom of the best of creation, the prophets and messengers chosen by Allah. Allah says about them: “And indeed We sent messengers before you and made for them wives and offspring” (al-Raad 38)

* The best example for the believers is the example of the prophet Muhammad (saw), who married and had children. These prophets and messengers are the people whom Muslims should look to emulate. Allah says:

“They are those whom Allah has guided. So follow their guidance” (al-Anaam 90)

* They should be emulated and not the disbelievers of the West, whose new lifestyles – mostly out of concern for enjoying this life or obtaining as many worldly goods as possible – discourage women from having more children.

* Islam has forbidden celibacy, monasticism and castration for such purposes. The prophet (saw) made this clear when he told those companions who were considering acetic forms of life: “I pray and I sleep; I fast and I break my fast; and I marry women. Whoever turns away from my way of life is not from me.”

The prophet (saw) not only encouraged marriage but he encouraged marrying those women who are child-bearing. He stated: “marry the loving, child-bearing women for I shall have the largest numbers among the prophets on the day of Resurrection.” (Recorded by Ahmad and ibn Hibban.)

* From the Islamic perspective, children are a gift and a blessing from Allah. Allah mentions some of the bounties that He has bestowed upon mankind in the following verse:

“And Allah has made for you spouses of your own kind and has made for you, from your wives, sons and grandsons, and has bestowed upon you good provisions.” (al-Nahl 72)

Allah also said:

“Wealth and children are the adornment of the life of this world.” (al-Kahf 46)

* The only true provider for all mankind is Allah. If Muslims follow what Allah has prescribed for them, Allah will provide for them. Allah has warned about killing one’s children out of fear of poverty for either parents or the child. Allah says:

“Kill not your children because of poverty – We provide sustenance for you and for them” (al-Anaam 151)

Allah also says:

“And kill not your children for fear of poverty. We shall provide for them as well as for you. Surely, the killing of them is a great sin” (al-Isra 31)

Hence, Muslims should never abort or kill their children out of fear of poverty. It is Allah who provides for them.

Based on the above points and numerous others, the scholars who participated in the research on this question came up with the following resolution:

-It is not allowed to enact a general law that limits the freedom of spouses in having children.

-It is forbidden to “permanently” end a man’s or a woman’s ability to produce children, such as by having a hysterectomy or vasectomy, as long as that is not called for by circumstances of necessity according to its Islamic framework.

-It is permissible to control the timing of births with the intent of distancing the occurrences of pregnancy or to delay it for a specific amount of time, if there is some Shariah need for that in the opinion of the spouses, based on mutual consultation and agreement between them. However, this is conditioned by that not leading to any harm, by it being done by means that are approved in the Shariah and that it not do anything to oppose a current and existing pregnancy.

 

 

 

Thinking About Divorce?


Posted byAdministrator on Monday, October 11 @ 23:07:02 EET
Contributed by
Anonymous

In the Name of ALLAH, The Most Gracious, The Most Merciful
May the Peace and Blessings be upon the beloved Prophet Muhammad.

Remember that marriage is half your religion!

Being married is supposed to be a union of comfort and tranquility for both the wife and husband.
Allah says: “And among His Signs is this, that He created for you mates from among yourselves, that ye may dwell in tranquility with them, and He has put love and mercy between your (hearts): verily in that are Signs for those who reflect.” [Sûrah al-Rûm: 21].

Sometimes, however, being married isn’t about being filled with feelings of comfort, tranquility and love. On the contrary, feelings of hurt, anger, resentment and betrayal take power

Since we all recognize that marriage can occasionally be such a test, here are a few reminders that just might be of a benefit to you in your marriage

1: Love Allah first and love your husband for Allah’s pleasure.

The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: There are seven whom Allah will shade with His shade on the day when there is no shade but His shade…” and he mentioned among them: “… two men who love each other for the sake of Allah, meeting and parting for that reason alone.” [Sahîh al-Bukhârî and Sahîh Muslim].

When you remind your self that the love you have for your husband, is there to attain Allah’s pleasure, it helps you to be patient and to fear Allah in your treatment of your husband, and likewise with his treatment with you.

The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “We see for those who are in love nothing better than marriage.” [Sunan Ibn Mâjah (1847) and Mustadrak Hâkim (2724) with a good chain of transmission]

2: Forgive His faults and Be Patient

Allah says in surah 42, ayah 43:
“ But indeed, if any show patience and forgive that would truly be an exercise of courageous will and resolution in the conduct of affairs.”

As humans, we are bound to fall in error.
Making a mistake in matters of marriage is not that much different from making a mistake in other areas of our religion. We need to repent for our faults and forgive the faults of others, just as we desire that Allah would forgive our own faults.

Allah says in surah 24 ayah 22:
“…Rather let them forgive and overlook- do you not wish that Allah should forgive you? Allah is Oft-forgiving, Most Merciful.”

“And what is with Allah is better and more enduring for those who believe and who rely upon their Lord. And those who avoid the major sins and indecencies, and when they become angry, they forgive.” [ Sûrah al-Shûrâ : 36-37]

3: Accept Allah’s Qadr (decree)

Allah says in surah 64 ayah 11:
“ no calamity befalls, but by the Leave ( Divine preordainments) of Allah, and whosever believes in Allah, He guides his heart ( to the true faith with certainty, i.e. what has befallen him was already written for him by allah from the Qadar [ Divine preordainments]). And Allah is the All-Knower of everything.”

Narrated Al-Husayn ibn Ali :
The Prophet (peace be upon him) as saying, “If any Muslim man or woman suffers a calamity and keeps it in his memory, even if it happened a long time ago, saying each time it is remembered, ‘We belong to Allah and to Him do we return,’ Allah, who is Blessed and Exalted will give a fresh reward each time it is said, equivalent to the reward when it happened.”
Ahmad and Bayhaqi, in Shu’ab al-Iman, transmitted it. – At-tirmidhi hadith

It isn’t healthy to indulge in a past calamity. It will only harm you and your relationship with your husband if you do not get over a problem that occurred in the past. Understanding that everything that occurs in our life, the good and the bad, is predestined from Allah. Reminding yourself that Allah is in control of all things will help you to move on with your life.

On the authority of Saad bin Malik Al-Khudari, that the messenger of Allah said :
“There should be neither harming nor reciprocating harm.”
a fine hadith related by Ibn Majah, Al-Daraqutni and others

4: Give each other your rights

Many of us are aware that we have rights on each other as husband and wife. However, what most of us have a tendency to forget is that we are still obliged to treat each other as brothers and sisters in Islam. If married couples would just give each other the rights that they are ought to give, many tribulations that would arise otherwise, would cease to come up.

On the authority of Abu Hurairah, who said : the messenger of Allah said :
“Do not envy one another; do not inflate prices one to another; do not hate one another; do not turn away from one another; and do not undercut one another, but be you, O servants of Allah, brothers. A muslim is the brother of a muslim: he neither oppresses him nor does he fail him, he neither lies to him nor does he hold him in contempt. Piety is right here-and he pointed to his breast three times. It is evil enough for a man to hold his brother muslim in contempt. The whole of a muslim for another muslim is inviolable: his blood, his property, and his honor.” narrated by Muslim.

Allah says in surah 17 ayah 53:
“ Tell My servants that they should speak only what is the best. Surely Satan stirs up trouble among them. The fact is that shaitan is an open enemy to mankind”

Abu Musa Al- Ashari reported: I asked the messenger of Allah (pbuh),“Who is the most excellent among the Muslims” He said, “ One from whose tongue and hands the other Muslims are secure.”

How many times have we said things that have displeased or hurt our spouses? Have we ever considered catering our words to our spouse’s feelings, in order not to upset or irritate them? As Muslim brothers and sisters in Islam, married couples should secure all people, especially their mates, from the harm and cruelty of their tongue and hands.

Abû Hurayrah relates how the Prophet (peace be upon him) described such people to “If a man invites his wife to his bed and she refuses, and as a consequence he goes to sleep angry, then the angels curse her until she rises.” [Sahîh al-Bukhârî].

The Prophet (peace be upon him) says: “Fear Allah when it comes to women, for they are helpers you took in faithfulness to Allah. You also find it permissible to enjoy their femininity lawfully with Allah’s word. You owe it to them to spend money on them for their food and clothes in kindness.” [Sahîh Muslim]

Abû Hurayrah relates that a man said to the Prophet (peace be upon him): “Counsel me.” The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: “Do not get angry.” The man repeated his request many times, but the Prophet (peace be upon him) kept saying: “Do not get angry.” [ Sahîh al-Bukhârî

Yahya related to me from Malik that Yahya ibn Said said that he heard Said ibn al-Musayyab say, “Shall I tell you what is better than much prayer and sadaqa?” They said, “Yes.” He said, “Mending discord. And beware of hatred – it strips you (of your deen).” Maliks muwatta

5: Respect and Honor your Husband.

Men are creatures who love power, honor and wealth, when they are deprived of these things; they tend to become irritable and aggressive. Nothing softens up a man like words of praise and respect. You can get the best out of your husband by giving him the respect and honor that he desires so deeply! Giving him respect and honor does not mean that you will be lowering yourself, but it means that you should be wise with how you speak to him and how you act towards him. The result will manifestly be that he will be happy and you will get what you want

6: Remind yourself of the purpose of your existence and use your marriage to get blessings and reward for the hereafter

The prophet (pbuh) said: “ If a women performs her five five prayers, fasts the month of Ramadan, protects herself from immorality, and is obedient to her husband, she will enter into Jannah from any door she desires.” (hilya)
“And verily the Hereafter will be better for you than the present.” [Sûrah al-Dhuhâ: 4]

“But verily the reward of the Hereafter is the best for those who believe and are constant in righteousness” [Sûrah Yûsuf: 57]

On the authority of Abdullah bin Omar, who said: The messenger of Allah took me by the shoulder and said: “Be in the world as though you were a stranger or a wayfarer come to know. Then, nay, you will come to know. Nay, if you could only know with certainty, then you would surely see the Hellfire. Then you shall surely see the Hellfire. Then you shall be asked about life’s pleasures.” [Sûrah al-Takâthur: 1-8].”p

The son of Omar used to say: “At evening do not expect [to live till] morning, and at morning do not expect [to live till] evening. Take from your health for your illness and from your life for your death.”narrated by Bukhari

7: Purify your own self

“Anger is from Satan, and Satan was created from fire. Fire is but extinguished by water, so if one of you gets angry, he should perform wudû’.” [ Sûnan Abî Dâwûd and Musnad Ahmad ]
On the authority of Anas, who said: I heard the messenger of Allah say:
Allah the Almighty has said: “O son of Adam, so long as you call upon Me and ask of Me, I shall forgive you for what you have done, and I shall not mind. O son of Adam, were your sins to reach the clouds of the sky and were you then to ask forgiveness of Me, I would forgive you. O son of Adam, were you to come to Me with sins nearly as great as the earth and were you then to face Me, ascribing no partner to Me, I would bring you forgiveness nearly as great as its.” related by Al-Tirmithi, who said that it was a good and sound Hadith

Allah also says: “Lo! men who surrender unto Allah, and women who surrender, and men who believe and women who believe, and men who obey and women who obey, and men who speak the truth and women who speak the truth, and men who persevere (in righteousness) and women who persevere, and men who are humble and women who are humble, and men who give alms and women who give alms, and men who fast and women who fast, and men who guard their modesty and women who guard (their modesty), and men who remember Allah much and women who remember – Allah has prepared for them forgiveness and a vast reward.” [ Sûrah al-Ahzâb : 35]

Allah says: “Indeed, prayer restrains from shameful and wrong deeds.” [Sûrah al-`Ankabût: 45]

Abû Mâlik al-Hârith b. `Âsim al-Ash`arî relates that Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) said: “Purification is half of faith. The praise of Allah fills the balance. Saying ‘Glorified be Allah and praise be to Allah’ fills what is between the heavens and the Earth. Prayer is light. Charity is proof of faith. Patience is illumination. The Qur’ân is a proof both for you and against you. Each one of us goes forth in the morning as a vendor for his soul. He either achieves its emancipation or brings it to perdition.” [Sahîh Muslim]

The Prophet (peace be upon him) advised us not to speak when we are angry. He said: “If one of you gets angry, he should be quiet.” [ Musnad Ahmad ]

On the authority of Abu Malik Al-Harith bin Asim Al-Ashari said that the messenger of Allah said:
“Purity is half of faith. alhamdu-lillah [Praise be to Allah] fills the scales, and subhana-Allah [How far is Allah from every imperfection] and alhamdu-lillah [Praise be to Allah] fill that which is between heaven and earth. Prayer is light; charity is a proof; patience is illumination; and the Quran is an argument for or against you. Everyone starts his day and is a vendor of his soul, either freeing it or bringing about its ruin.”
narrated by Muslim.

8: Be grateful to Allah and to your husband

Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) said: “Look towards those who are beneath you and do not look towards those who are above you. This is better so that you do not belittle Allah’s blessings.” [Sahîh al-Bukhârî and Sahîh Muslim]

9: Understand that Allah is your maula and wali and naseer

This worldly life can sometimes be such a test for every one of us. Life’s trials and tribulations can make anyone go crazy. Believing in Allah and His messenger, and trusting what Allah has revealed helps you understand the different trials of life. Allah is our Protecting Friend, Helper and our Guardian. He is the best of these roles and He will suffice anyone who trusts him and fears Him.

“Whoever puts his trust in Allah, sufficient is Allah for him.” [Sûrah al-Talâq: 3]

“Whoever fears Allah, He will prepare for him a way out and provide for him from whence he least expects it. And whoever places his trust in Allah, Allah is sufficient for him.” [ Sûrah al-Talâq : 2-3]

“And whoever fears Allah, He grants him ease in his affairs.” [ Sûrah al-Talâq : 4]

On the authority of Abdullah bin Abbas, who said : One day I was behind the prophet and he said to me: “Young man, I shall teach you some words [of advice] : Be mindful of Allah, and Allah will protect you. Be mindful of Allah, and you will find Him in front of you. If you ask, ask of Allah; if you seek help, seek help of Allah. Know that if the Nation were to gather together to benefit you with anything, it would benefit you only with something that Allah had already prescribed for you, and that if they gather together to harm you with anything, they would harm you only with something Allah had already prescribed for you. The pens have been lifted and the pages have dried.” narrated by Termithi, who said it is true and fine hadith

10: Optimism is contagious, pass it on!

Being around someone who is pessimistic all the time will without doubt leave you feeling down. So next time someone is giving you a dose of their negativity, slap them back with some good words and a good attitude and see how it affects them and their day!

The prophet (pbuh) said: “ Do not look down upon any good work, and when you speak to your brother, show him a cheerful face. This is a good work.”

…. “The above is sincere advice to all married women. Stay Strong, attain knowledge of islam, becuase it is here for your benefit and know that your destination is your grave, and then inshALlah, it will be Jannah.”

Assalamualaykum

 

A Good Example at Home

 


Posted byadministrator on Tuesday, August 24 @ 00:00:00 EEST
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By Imaam al-Haramain Abdul-Baaree ibn ‘Awad Ath-Thubaytee
Friday Sermon from the Prophet’s Mosque in Madina, on 15th Rabee’uth-Thaanee 1422AH:

Today the Muslim family faces a grim offensive aimed at shaking its very foundations, by undoing the family ties, spoiling the women’s characters, discarding family values, and calling towards nudity, mixing of the sexes and disinhibition. And if the family is destroyed, will there then remain any Muslim nation?

All praise is due to Allah, Lord of the worlds. May peace and blessings be upon the Messenger of Allah and all his companions.

Fellow Muslims, I advise you and myself to fear Allah. Allah says,
“O you who believe! Fear Allah as He should be feared, and die not but in a state of Islam.”

Family is the Heart of the Community

The God-fearing Muslim family is the heart of a healthy community. The piety of a family is dependant on the piety of individual members of the family, and the piety of a community is likewise dependant on the piety of the families who make up the community.

Islam attaches great importance to the family, how it is established and how to keep it together. For the Muslim family to keep up it’s high position it maintains a state of love and harmony, and you find in it feelings of amicability and kindness. Allah says,
“And among His Signs is this, that He created for you wives from among yourselves, that you may find repose in them, and He has put between you affection and mercy.” (Ar-Rum 30: 21)

He also says,
“They are Libas [i.e. body cover, or screen, or Sakan, (i.e. you enjoy the pleasure of living with her)] for you and you are the same for them.” (Al-Baqarah 2: 187)

The Qur’an made it clear to married couples that each of them is essential to the other. Allah says,
“It is He Who has created you from a single person (Adam), and (then) He has created from him his wife [Hawwa (Eve)], in order that he might enjoy the pleasure of living with her.” (Al-A’araaf 7: 189)

It cannot be imagined that one could lead a normal, steadfast human life if there was a complete destruction of the normal family structure. Those people who call for the abolishment of the family structure do not do so for the good of humankind. Their call was – and still is – a discordant sound in the passing of history.

The family is established on mutual understanding, the exchanging of views and cooperation. Allah says in relation to nursing and weaning babies,
“The mothers shall give suck to their children for two whole years, (that is) for those (parents) who desire to complete the term of suckling, but the father of the child shall bear the cost of the mother’s food and clothing on a reasonable basis. No person shall have a burden laid on him greater than he can bear. No mother shall be treated unfairly on account of her child, nor father on account of his child. And on the (father’s) heir is incumbent the like of that (which was incumbent on the father). If they both decide on weaning, by mutual consent, and after due consultation, there is no sin on them.” (Al-Baqarah 2: 233)

A happy family which seeks stability and continuity builds its life on firm principles, the most important of which are: the raising of children, mutual respect of each others rights, courteousness in dealing with one another and widening one’s family’s and one’s own horizons. Here, couples can find the pure quietude that the Qur’an spoke about, and if a difference occurs between them then true love will melt it away.

The Wise (Allah) know that a person can sometimes be affected by an atmosphere of disagreement and feelings of hate, and then Satan finds what he is looking for sought after for destruction of the existence of the family. The Qur’anic viewpoint was to purify the emotions and to return to life its clarity and to the family its beauty. Allah says,
“…And live with them honourably. If you dislike them, it may be that you dislike a thing and Allah brings through it a great deal of good.” (An-Nisaa 4: 19)

And for this reason Imam Ibn Katheer said about this verse,
“It means: and perhaps your patience in holding onto them despite your mutual dislike is much better for you in this world and in the hereafter.”

If the members of a family exchange love for stubbornness; and this is a bad sign and a defeated beginning; nothing can destroy a family as stubbornness and argument. Small disagreements can be blown out of all proportions and become huge points of stubbornness, and major disagreement. How often do we hear tell of or witness marriages failing though they are but newly wed?

Many researchers have decided that family breakdown is the main cause of juvenile delinquency; therefore the family is responsible for protecting itself from disunity before it experiences breakdown and ceases to function as a family unit. Also one cannot pretend that life is or should always be trouble-free; quite the opposite in fact; a normal healthy life will always have it’s ups and downs.

Everything in this world no matter how insignificant has a wisdom behind it and serves a purpose, so what is the role of the Muslim family?

In a Muslim community, the family plays several important roles, the most important being:

Increasing the Progeny of the Muslim Nation

The Prophet said,
“Marriage is one of my traditions, and whoever does not follow my traditions is not one of us. So get married, for that way you will increase the nation (in strength and number).” (Ibn Majah)

Having many children increases the strength of the community, in addition to increasing ones personal status and being well-remembered after death. Advocates of birth control do not wish the Muslim community any good, and their weak arguments show that they have been afflicted with pessimism, uncertainty (in the truth of Islam and the Last Day) and mistrust (in Allah’s Will).

Teaching and raising Muslim youth is a job for the whole family. In fact, the home is the first school in which the child is introduced to the basic tenets of his religion, and this important job should not be left to maids and nurses. The child that nurses from his mother’s milk also receives her compassion and affection. Conversely, a child which is cared for and raised by maids will never receive the same love, warmth and affection and nor will they have a correct Islamic upbringing.

The Muslim family is held responsible before Allah for the correct Islamic upbringing of it’s children, instilling in them the concept of worship of Allah and following His prescribed way in their lives.

Do our families today fulfil their childrearing and educational responsibilities? Does our method of raising children give them the power to resist westernisation and secularisation? Do members of the family gather together to learn the Qur’an? Or do they gather to watch acts of disobedience to Allah (i.e. on the television etc.)? Do our children find in our homes useful lessons, good examples and good manners?

Any shortcomings or omissions in the family’s job of raising its children will have negative effects on the behaviour of the children, and in turn this will have a negative effect on the thoughts, structure and security of the community.

Parental Duties

Parents will be asked about the fulfilment of their parental duties. Ibn Umar related that Prophet said,
“All of you are guardians and all of you are responsible for your wards. An imam is a guardian, and he is responsible for his wards (among the local community); a man is a guardian in his family and he is responsible for his dependants, a lady is a guardian in her husband’s house and she is responsible for her charges (children, property under her control &c.)…” (Bukhari & Muslim)

One responsibility of a parent is to cleanse the house from all vice, to ensure that all members of the family perform all of their religious duties, and to encourage them to perform good and loved deeds.

One of the main goals of the family is to teach its children to love and respect the mosque, and build strong ties between its children and the mosque, for the mosque is an essential part of the life of a Muslim. Instilling love of the mosque is a great and important part of upbringing; deep in effect, and implants in a child respect, good values and manners. A Muslim family which is based on faith in Allah will be able to hold on to Islamic morals and manners, and feel a great attachment to the mosque. It is able, by the light of the Qur’an, to bring into the world children who will become brave heroes, scholars, ascetic slaves (of Allah), sincere leaders, pious men, and worshipful women. Such families fill a glorious page in the books of history.

Grim Offensive Against the Family

Today the Muslim family faces a grim offensive aimed at shaking its very foundations, by undoing the family ties, spoiling the women’s characters, discarding family values, and calling towards nudity, mixing of the sexes and disinhibition. And if the family is destroyed, will there then remain any Muslim nation? And if it does remain it will be marginalized.

In some Muslim countries, the families’ hearts have been disunited as a result of the slavish adherence to Western values, drifting blindly behind any vogue that comes out of it; divorce cases have risen, and many youths have turned away from marriage followed by a frantic rush after brutish desires.

The following much-followed trend is a sensitive subject which touches many of us closely; it has a share in social change in decreasing the role of the family. Satellite dishes have taken over the family’s time, had an effect on it’s progress, and loosened it’s values; and the family loses – in some cases – some of its influence over the children. These devices (satellite, TV. etc.) compete with the family in controlling the children inside the safety of their own homes by their carefully researched attractiveness, and attack directly and indirectly to destroy their relation with their community, weaken their religion, and diminish their enthusiasm. However, one thing that is very painful to consider, is that some families completely abandon their role in the task of religious and intellectual upbringing, and surrender their children to satellite dishes and such like, that distort young minds and destroy faith unchecked.

Building a Family is Work

Brothers in Islam! Building a family on a sound, rational basis is not an easy task, conversely it is a momentous duty that requires preparation and preparedness. Married life is not all fun and games; rather it is a series of responsibilities and duties, whoever proposes marriage without ability or suitability is ignorant, unaware of the wisdom of Allah’s Divine Law, and whomsoever uses marriage for evil purposes, or denies its rights deserves the anger of Allah and His punishment; so one must always behave righteously in this life.
Allah says,
“O you who believe! Ward off yourselves and your families against a Fire (Hell) whose fuel is men and stones…” (At-Tahreem 66: 6)

Family life is a life of work. And life has its costs and burdens; so it needs someone to be in charge to direct it’s actions, and supervise its safety this leadership is called Qiwaamah in the Qur’an and it is the lot of the man. Leadership is not for the purpose of reverence and domination but it is a post of supervision and upbringing. It does not mean denying the wife her own personality and wishes, or preventing her from expressing her opinions or having any say of what goes on in the family.

Allah has prepared the woman for certain jobs, and has prepared the man for certain jobs. They are each suited to their own jobs by reason of the physical and mental differences between them. If women were made to be the protectors and maintainers in place of men the woman would be charged with more than she could handle, and the family would be deviated from its normal course and would face trials and difficulties. There are essential differences between men and women which enable them to perform the gender-specific tasks which have naturally and traditionally been theirs to perform. If the roles of men and women were reversed, it would harm the family, and ultimately the community at large. Those people who call for the removal of man’s natural assertiveness and leadership are fools because that goes against the natural Law of Allah.

Al-Qiwaamah means that the head of the household is responsible for the physical safety of his family, and for their safety from a religious standpoint. He protects them from evil fashions and deviation, and provides the perfect example in the way he abides by the Limits set by Allah, and his exaltation of his religious rites and ceremonies, unashamedly and with the best of character and moral standard. He is like a shepherd that protects his flock.

The head of a household is required to strike a balance between his work, his acts of worship and being free for his family; to give each one it’s due, e.g. the rights of the wife, bringing up the children etc. If the head of the household is unable to make time to sit by himself or with members of the family to talk to them and listen to them, later on, when it is too late to do so, or is no longer possible, he will regret not having made the time.

‘Abdullah ibn ‘Amr ibn Al-‘Aas said,
“The Messenger of Allah said to me, ‘I have been told that you fast all day and then stay up all night (in worship) Don’t do so; For your body has it’s rights on you, and likewise your wife has rights upon you: fast and break your fast; fast three days in each month for that is (as if you were) fasting your

whole life.’” (Bukhari & Muslim)

 

 

 

 

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MAhram Relatives

Posted by islamicwedding on October 7, 2008

Mahram Relatives

 

 

This woman is not your mahram

 

I would like to know what is my relationship to my brother-in-laws (wife’s brother) wife. She calls me brother and I treat her like my sister. Is this allowed in Islam. Please advice.

Praise be to Allaah.  

It is not permissible for you to treat your wife’s brother’s wife as your sister, because she is not one of your mahrams. So it is not permissible for her to appear before you without proper hijab, and it is not permissible for you to be alone with her, or to shake hands with her, or to look at her, or to speak to her except from behind a screen, when there is no fear of fitnah (temptation). Allaah has forbidden the believing women to show their adornment except to specific people. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): 

“…and not to reveal their adornment except to their husbands, or their fathers, or their husband’s fathers, or their sons, or their husband’s sons, or their brothers or their brother’s sons, or their sister’s sons, or their (Muslim) women (i.e. their sisters in Islam), or the (female) slaves whom their right hands possess, or old male servants who lack vigour, or small children who have no sense of feminine sex. And let them not stamp their feet so as to reveal what they hide of their adornment. And all of you beg Allaah to forgive you all, O believers, that you may be successful”

[al-Noor 24:31] 

You are not one of the people mentioned in the aayah, so this ruling does not apply to you. And Allaah knows best. 

See also question no. 5538.

Sheikh Muhammed Salih Al-Munajjid

 

 

Ruling on nikah an uncle’s wife

 

AS-Salam Alaykum,
Is it permissible for a man to marry his uncle’s wife after their divorce? What would his rights be towards the kids, since they are his cousins? Thanking you. Allah’s blessing be on you.

Praise be to Allaah.

A man is permitted to marry the wife of his maternal uncle, if they divorce and after she has completed her ‘iddah (waiting-period after divorce). An uncle’s wife is not a mahram (close relative to whom marriage is permanently forbidden), so there is nothing wrong with marrying her. But it is forbidden for a man to have any kind of haraam relationship with his uncle’s wife. Shaytaan could make something that is bad appear attractive to them, so it is essential to exercise caution. Also, it is not permitted to make her hate her husband so that she will get divorced and one can then marry her. One should try to reconcile and reunite, not destroy and break up. In principle, it is better for the children to stay with their father and mother in one family unit, unless the interests of sharee’ah in this case dictate otherwise. If the worst comes to the worst, and they get divorced, and there is no suspicion about your role in all this, then there is nothing wrong with marrying the woman who has been divorced by your uncle. Your treatment of your uncle’s children (your cousins), if they should come under your care, should be fair and proper, based on the ties of kinship between you. If you treat them well, doing so sincerely for the sake of Allaah, then you will have a great reward from Him. And Allaah knows best.

Islam Q&A
Sheikh Muhammed Salih Al-Munajjid

 

 

 

Sitting with husband’s relatives and shaking hands with them

 

 

My husband’s family always ridicule me for wearing my headscarf even when I’m in the house with them during family gatherings or Eid celebrations. They say you dont have to cover up amongst family members. I know about the rules of women aurat amonst non mahram in Islam and would like to preseve it, How can I counter their comments amicably yet preach on them about the wholesome adoption of Islam? Also, are husband’s nephews mahram to his wife? I have checked with some ustaz and they told me they are not. However, because of family and husband’s insistance ( so as not to hurt their feelings) , I still salam (handshake) with them as this is normal practice in the family. I feel very trubled about it and seek Allah guidance abd forgiveness.

Praise be to Allaah.  

Firstly: 

We ask Allaah to help you to do good, and to make things easy for you and relieve you of your distress. For what a Muslim woman hears and sees of those who have turned away from the religion of Allaah or whose commitment has become very weak, she has to bear that with patience and seek reward for things that she suffers. She had to have hope in her Lord and ask Him to help her to remain steadfast. 

It is not permissible for her to respond to their demands or to go along with their whims and desires for her to mix with them, look at them, shake hands with them and give up hijaab, because if she pleases them in this manner she will incur the wrath of her Lord. 

Secondly: 

The sons of your husband’s brothers and sisters are not mahrams, rather they are among the people of whom you should be extra cautious, because the Prophet SAWS (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) likened them to death. 

It was narrated from ‘Uqbah ibn ‘Aamir that the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Beware of entering upon women.” A man from among the Ansaar said, “O Messenger of Allaah, what about the in-law?” He said, “The in-law is death.” 

(Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 4934; Muslim, 2172) 

Al-Nawawi said: The scholars of Arabic language are agreed that al-hamu (translated here as “in-law”) refers to the relatives of a woman’s husband, such as his father, paternal uncle, brother, brother’s son (nephew), cousin (son of paternal uncle), etc. Akhtaan (sing. khatan) refers to the relatives of a man’s wife, and ashaar (sing. suhr) refers to both.

 With regard to the Prophet’s words “The in-law is death,” what this means is that there is more fear with regard to him than anyone else, and evil is to be expected of him, and the fitnah (temptation) is greater because he is able to reach the woman and be alone with her without anyone denouncing that, unlike the case of one who is a stranger. What is meant by “in-law” (hamu) here is the relatives of the husband apart from his father/grandfather and sons/grandsons. Fathers/grandfathers and sons/grandsons are mahrams for his wife and it is permissible for them to be alone with her. The word “death” here does not refer to them. Rather what is meant is the brother, brother’s son, paternal uncle, cousin, etc, who are not mahrams. People are usually careless about this matter and a man may let his wife be alone with his brother. This is what is referred to by “death” and should be prevented more than her being alone with a stranger for the reasons mentioned above. What we have mentioned is the correct meaning of the hadeeth. 

Sharh Muslim, 14/154 

Shaykh ‘Abd al-‘Azeez ibn Baaz (may Allaah have mercy on him) said: 

It is permissible for a woman to sit with her husband’s brothers or cousins, etc., if she is wearing complete shar’i hijaab, which means covering her face, hair and entire body, because she is ‘awrah and fitnah. That is if there is nothing dubious about the gathering. But if the gathering is one in which there is something dubious, then it is not permitted, such as sitting with them in order to listen to singing and musical instruments, etc.; and it is not permissible for her to be alone with any one of them or with anyone else who is not a mahram for her, because the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “No man should be alone with a (non-mahram) woman unless she has a mahram with her.” (Saheeh; agreed upon). And he (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “No man should be alone with a (non-mahram) woman, for the third one present will be the Shaytaan.” (Narrated by Imam Ahmad with a saheeh isnaad from ‘Umar ibn al-Khattaab. May Allaah be pleased with him). 

And Allaah is the Source of strength. 

Fataawa al-Mar’ah al-Muslimah, 1/422, 423 

Thirdly: 

As for a woman shaking hands with a non-mahram man, this is haraam. It is not permitted for you to take this matter lightly just because your relatives or your husband’s relatives want you to. 

It was narrated from ‘Urwah that ‘Aa’ishah told him about the bay’ah (oath of allegiance) given by the women: “The hand of the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) never touched the hand of any woman. When he accepted the oath of allegiance from a woman, he would accept her words and then say, ‘Go, for you have sworn your allegiance.’”

(Narrated by Muslim, 1866) 

So this infallible one, the best of all mankind, the leader of the sons of Adam on the Day of Resurrection, did not touch women, even though the bay’ah or oath of allegiance originally was done by giving one’s hand. So the ruling should be even more strict with regard to other men?  

It was narrated that Umaymah the daughter of Raqeeqah said: The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “I do not shake hands with women.”

(Narrated by al-Nasaa’i, 4181; Ibn Maajah, 2874; classed as saheeh by Shaykh al-Albaani in Saheeh al-Jaami’, 2513) 

Shaykh Ibn Baaz (may Allaah have mercy on him) said: 

Shaking hands with women with a barrier in between is something that is subject to further debate, but the view which is most likely to be correct is that it is not allowed at all, based on the general meaning of the ahaadeeth, because the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said, “I do not shake hands with women,” and so as to ward off the means (that may lead to immoral actions). And Allaah knows best. 

Haashiyat Majmoo’ah Rasaa’il fi’l-Hijaab wa’l-Sufoor, 69. 

And Allaah knows best.

 

A woman marrying her father’s maternal uncle

 

 

Is it permissible for a girl to marry her father’s maternal uncle?.

Praise be to Allaah.  

It is not permissible for a girl to marry her father’s maternal uncle, because her father’s maternal uncle is also her maternal uncle, so he is a mahram. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): 

“Forbidden to you (for marriage) are: your mothers, your daughters, your sisters, your father’s sisters, your mother’s sisters, your brother’s daughters, your sister’s daughters”

[al-Nisa’ 4:23] 

The scholars (may Allaah have mercy on them) have stated that the paternal uncle of a father is also the paternal uncle of his son, and the maternal uncle of a father is also the maternal uncle of his son. 

And Allaah knows best, 

See al-Muqni’ wa’l-Insaaf wa’l-Sharh al-Kabeer (ed. By al-Turki), 20/277.

Islam Q&A

 

 

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The Making Successful life

Posted by islamicwedding on October 7, 2008

The institution of marriage has undergone great stresses in the

 

Western society. High divorce rate and the trend of living together has resulted in broken families and troubled children. The human society developed and refined the institution of marriage over a long period of time. Although scientific achievements have provided the World with all kinds of amenities, the human beings have not changed at a basic level. The human instincts such as joy, jealousy, love, hate, fear, pride and prejudice have not changed over the millenniums. The people still need stable family environments and friends to share life experiences. Being a first generation immigrant, I am always amazed when I read about the divorce rate in the USA. Looking within the South Asian community here, I find the divorce rate negligible. This diametrically opposite situation has prompted me to analyze the roots of a successful marriage. These statistics have led me to believe that unsuccessful marriage is a unique American phenomenon. This problem has started to manifest in the second generation of immigrants who are born and brought up in this country. Since this causes a major disruption in the lives of children who are the future custodians of this great nation, it is worthwhile to study the factors that contribute to a stable family and marriage.
The successful marriages require support systems, common values, and shared aspirations in addition to love and mutual understanding. These aspects are discussed in detail in this article.

Cultural Uniformity
General observation shows that the couples in a successful marriage belong to a similar cultural group. By cultural group in American context refers to refers to Italian, Cuban, Mexican and Irish American groups. The other groups include Chinese, West European and Hispanic American. The culture is a broad term that includes language, music and literature among other things. These divisions may not mean much to European immigrants but they are in fact considered important in India and Pakistan. A cursory look at ethnic newspapers reveals that people or parents are looking within the same group for marriage relationship.
The first generation immigrants generally marry within their cultural background and most of them have stable marriages. It is not suggested here that people should only marry within their own ethnic group. The successful marriages between people of diverse backgrounds require broad vision, maturity and freedom from all kinds of prejudices. As the marriages between diverse cultural groups have started to occur in the second generation of immigrants, so have the divorce rates started to approach American norms. In the USA, marriages are intermixed among people from European origins. There are no considerations for family or cultural background. The differences start to manifest soon after the honeymoon.
A better communication between people of similar background could be the reason for fewer instances of misunderstanding. The people of similar cultural background instinctively understand the likes and dislikes of their partners. For example, some people love dogs or other pets because they always had a dog or cat in their homes while growing up. There are other people who consider dogs and cats as a nuisance that must be avoided at all costs. Some people like to congregate in-groups while others are brought up alone in a calm and quiet home. The differences are obvious if a person goes from England or Sweden to any place close to the Mediterranean Sea.
Role of Religion
It has been observed that religious people have successful marriages. This refers to both partners. If one of partner is religious and other does not share same ideas, it becomes a difficult relationship. The immigrants are more religious than their counterparts in the native country. The people back home in India, Pakistan and Mid East believe that if a person lives in America then he or she must be modern and liberal in outlook. A lot of marriages fail because of this particular misconception. The humanity in various parts of the World developed marriage as an institution and religion sanctified the relationship. The religion provides a code of ethics and standards of behavior that need to be followed. For example, the religious edict saying, ” Thou shall not commit adultery” lays the foundation of relationship in marriage for both partners. This factor alone can reduce strain in a relationship as it gives certain level of assurance of commitment to the marriage.

Recognition of mistakes
It is never easy to accept and own the mistakes and saying sorry. The ego gets hurt and people tend to think that after saying sorry the other partner will gain an upper hand. Just by simply acknowledging the error or a mistake can resolve fifty percent of the conflicts. Most of the people who have a stable and successful marriage are very up-front in their relationship and never hesitate to say sorry.
On the contrary, small misunderstandings can resultin irreconcilable differences. The common response is to find equal and similar fault in the partner and reminding that he or she is even a bigger culprit. The preeminent reason in many of such instances is that both partners are not giving up any ground and differences continue to grow. This approach if avoided can result in a harmonious relationship. Forgiving and accepting apology leads to better understanding.

Economic Conditions
Better economic conditions do not mean that only rich people can have a stable marriage. The people should spend only what they can afford. This is one of the major causes of strain in marriages at all income levels. Some people at a lower income level have much better marriages as compared to the rich and wealthy people. The key is to keep the expenses within limits for both partners. In the USA, the temptations are unlimited. Everyday, people are targeted with advertisements for new cars, better gadgets, and idyllic vacations. The message comes across as if all these things do not cost anything. There are promises of no payment for a number of months. The human beings are psyched up to buy the things that do not need and vacation that they can not afford. After few weeks of bliss, the reality dawns when the payments have to be made and there is hardly any money available for essentials needs. At this point in time the blame game starts. In Europe and Asia, people buy the merchandize whenever there is a need. In the USA, the need is created. There are countless examples. A simple one that comes to mind is the cellular phone. Some people need wireless communication for business or personal reasons. However, the marketing of wireless equipment make us believe that nobody can live in the next millennium without it. All of these small things add up. A large segment of population can not afford all of these modern inventions. The inevitable result is the strain on all relationships. The misunderstanding reaches the peak when the primary bread -winner in the family loses the job. On the other hand, the cost of food, clothing and housing is much cheaper in the USA as compared to Western Europe, Middle East and Asia. The people can live comfortably by controlling expenses and by staying married.

Support System
The availability of a support system is a great contributor to stable marriages. The support system is a network of friends and relatives that can be relied upon in case of any misunderstanding. Both partners can discuss the problem with their respective friends. By discussing the problem alone can put it in a proper perspective. In North America, there is a great emphasis on individual growth and independence. This factor alone prohibits sharing of concerns and aspirations with friends. In the Eastern society, the extended family and friends provide a network that keeps marriages on track. The lack of this support system has started to manifest in the second generation of immigrants. The Americans can at least go to a psychiatrist to identify the problems. The immigrants lose the support system that was readily available in home country. They also abhor to seek in any kind of psychological help and thus face a double jeopardy. I have personally known a number of marriages in stress in the USA, while similar relationship would have been very cordial in their own country.
The solution is to develop a new network and also keep the old network alive by communication. The revolution in communication has brought the whole World very close. Now it has become possible to reach out to anyone at anytime. In the USA, one can find all ethnic groups from all over the World. The social and cultural links can now be very easily maintained. I have seen Korean, Indian, Chinese and Pakistani communities all across America. It is now possible to develop a network of friends within one own community who can understand the background of problems.
In South Asian communities, parents, brothers and sisters play a powerful role. If the parents listen to only one side of the story, then the marriage is doomed. On the other hand if they understand and appreciate the situation of other partner, then the marriage is strengthened. I have seen parents listening only to version of their own kids. It is very difficult to accept that their own kids could be wrong because it reflects their own failure. The key for the parents is to listen to both sides before placing the blame.

American Work Environments
The working environments in the USA are very dynamic as compared to any country in the World. The non- stop restructuring, new technologies have a great impact on the society. In order to keep up with the changes, people have to move in search of jobs. The neighborhoods get transformed in a matter of years. Sometimes it seems as if all America in on the move. When the people move, they get away from friends, relatives and familiar environments. The American born people are perhaps used to this kind of life. Most of the Americans quickly get settled in new environments, make new friends and never look back. However, people from the East come from very stable family systems.
The movement from one place to another uproots people and kids never develop lasting friendships. These relationships are a stabilizing factor in marriage. Whenever, there is a disagreement between the spouses, these are the people who can patch up the differences. The big dilemma is now how to reconcile the demands of career with the needs of a stable marriage. A simple advice for people on the move is to develop new friendships and also maintain old relationships. It has become very easy with the emerging technologies of Internet and communications.
Developing new friends can be easily done. In a new place, telephone directory research to look for places of worship and familiar surnames can be very helpful. Our experience shows that even random calling can result in finding very helpful people from any Asian or Mid Eastern countries.

Conclusion
In spite of great social upheaval in social norms during the past century, I find the institution of marriage still very strong. In the USA, people can live together without marriage and have children. The people in USA do not question the private life styles of other people. However, it is a surprise to see young Hollywood stars getting married who are supposed to be in the forefront of new liberal style. A large number of people get married again after bitter divorce. This indicates that there is something in the human psyche that propels people towards making a commitment to marriage. This fact was recognized long time ago and gradually the institution of marriage evolved over centuries. The challenge for our times is to keep the marriage intact. I believe it can be done and most of the marriages can be successful. The institution of marriage is a foundation for a stable society. We owe it to our future generation to provide them a carefree childhood with pleasant memories.

 

 

 

 

 

How Doshiza.com Work

 

 

Musmat™ is a unique service provided by The Muslim Matrimonial. Established and based in the United Kingdom for over 6 years, we provide you with the following unique features and services:

  • Graduates & Professionals Only: This is a high quality service specifically designed for busy Graduates and Professionals who value their time.
  • You Have Complete Control: Once you login to your secure member area you can – get contacts, change your profile or contact details, view your account details, change your username & password, view your contact history – you have access to all the information you need.
  • Updated Daily: The member list is updated daily – with engaged members taken off and new members put on.

  • You Receive Email Alerts of New Members: To save you even more time, we email you the profiles of new members who fit your chosen criteria. You can then decide whether you want to contact them.
  • Simple And Easy To Use: Most of our members are not computer experts and they do not need to be! We have designed our service to be simple to use and obvious.
  • You will be provided with as much support and assistance as you need: Mashallah the Musmat™ Team really are committed to helping you find your partner. The effort and investment we have put into the website is mirrored by the effort that we provide behind the scenes to support and help you find your perfect life partner Inshallah.
    We do NOT ask you to join up and then leave you solo. From help with designing your profile, to advice on protocol
    we are here to help.

    For any further enquiries please contact us at support@themuslimmatrimonial.co.uk

  • You Save So Much Time Contacting Members By Phone/Email*: Yes – you read it correctly – the vast majority of our members have given permission for their telephone number to be given to other members. You simply call the person and talk to them, saving you a lot of time.
    * The facility of contacting other members by phone/email is available for European members only. Non-European members may contact other members by means of our messaging system.
  • Musmat™ Helps You Find Your Ideal Muslim Partner Quickly: We understand how frustrating it can be to search for a marriage partner (believe it or not most of the Musmat™ Team are of marriageable age – so we do understand !). This is why at Musmat™ we have spent a lot of time, and effort to create a service which is literally, by the Grace of Allah, second to none. A service which is specifically designed for the busy Muslim graduate/professional in mind, who is seriously seeking a marriage partner.
    At Musmat™ we provide you with the services to help you find your ideal partner, quickly, efficiently, and economically.
  • Your Confidentiality Is Respected At All Times: No names or contact details are ever published in the profiles. Your contact details are only ever given out to other members. Other members requesting your contact details are given a contact name, telephone number (optional), email address and your location (e.g. London, Birmingham etc) only.
  • Why Our Members Are More Serious: Our members pay a very affordable monthly fee and therefore tend to be much more serious about getting married. When you speak to them, you will feel the difference and avoid time wasters.
  • Risk Free Trial: We are so confident, that Inshallah you will like this service, that we even offer a seven day money back guarantee, subject to terms and conditions.
    If up till now you’ve been putting off your search –
    now you have no excuse – don’t waste anymore time – give it a try – what have you got to lose? To start your RISK FREE and exciting journey in finding that special person in your life Click Here Now
  • Secure Online Payment: We use the internationally recognised WorldPay payment system (part of The Royal Bank of Scotland Group) for secure online credit card payments together with 128-bit SSL secure encryption technology, and do not store your credit card details anywhere on our servers.
  • Quality Service: Musmat™ is part of The Muslim Matrimonial, established in the UK for over 6 years. Over this time we have provided services to over 10,000 people, and have continously developed and refined these services to make them as efficient and effective as possible. By using Musmat™, you can be confident you are dealing with a professional organisiation which has an established reputation and a well known focus on the quality of service provided to members.

So – what have you got to lose? Give the service a try – our members are waiting to be contacted and you might just find your life partner amongst them.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Major Obstacle To Finding A Muslim Marriage Partner


If like most people who are looking for a Muslim marriage partner, you’ve already looked in your usual social circles and haven’t managed to find anyone suitable yet, your options will have become very limited. A lot of people find themselves in this situation and the key choice they have to make is then –

a) You simply hope that someone will turn up by chance,

b) You actively do something about it.

How do you overcome the major obstacle of finding enough Muslim people to meet in the first place? People who are serious about getting married. How do you avoid wasting possibly years of waiting ?

You need to use a reliable, established and proven matrimonials service where you can start contacting people, and people can start contacting you immediately.

To read just a small sample of other testimonials received click here.

Real Proof That Our Service Really Can Help You In Your Muslim Marriage Search.


Our service has been proven for over 10 years.

Here’s what one member had to say:

I had been involved previously in an arranged marriage but this time I wanted to meet someone more compatible and also get to know the person a little better before committing to marriage. I found it quite difficult to meet the right sort of person through friends, family or work. I came across a couple of Muslim internet matrimonial sites and thought that I would give it a try, if only to have some interesting conversations with like minded people. I did not actually expect to find my partner through them! I was quite surprised at the number of people that were in a similar position. I exchanged e-mails and spoke to a number of very nice people through the two services I was a member of.

The Muslim Matrimonial service was excellent and responded to all queries very well and very promptly. As fate would have it, the second person I met through The Muslim Matrimonial was very compatible and exactly the type of person I was looking for. We met for the first time after exchanging a few e-mails and talking on the phone. We spoke frequently on the phone and on e-mail, and also met a few times. Once we were sure about each other, we then spoke to our respective families, got their approval and their involvement. I have to confess that we did not tell our respective families of exactly how we met initially. I suppose both of us are a little reticent about the internet/placing an advert thing! Apart from this aspect we have been quite open.

We are now engaged and are planning to get married early next year inshallah. We and our respective families are very happy!

Musmat™ – How Does It Work So Well?


Quite frankly, this service is NOT suitable for everyone. It is specifically designed for busy graduates and professionals who want a quick time-saving service and are seriously seeking marriage. Our existing members demand high levels of service – and the service is geared towards exceeding their expectations. It is not one of those services where just anyone with an email can join.

Heres why we are different.

You Save So Much Time Contacting Members By Phone.

Yes – you read it correctly – the vast majority of our members have given permission for their telephone number to be given to other members. You simply call the person and talk to them, saving you a lot of time.

You Even Get Contact Details Instantly.

Once you become a member – all you need to do is login to your own secure membership area and click the checkbox next to the member you wish to contact. The contact details appear instantly on your screen. Then – just contact them.

You Contact Members Who Genuinely Exist!

Yes – You avoid wasting time on non-serious people who made up a profile and put it on a free matrimonials service. Avoid wasting time on fictious people who are only prepared to be identified (even to us) by an anonymous email address. Avoid wasting time on people who got up one night, thought “I need to get married”, added their profile and then forgot to ever check their emails again.

Why Our Members Are More Serious.

Our members pay a very affordable monthly fee and therefore tend to be much more serious about getting married. When you speak to them, you will feel the difference and avoid time wasters.

Your Confidentiality Is Respected At All Times.

No names or contact details are ever published in the profiles. Your contact details are only ever given out to other members. Other members requesting your contact details are given a contact name, telephone number (optional), email address and your location (e.g. London, Birmingham etc) only.

Your Security Is Of Utmost Importance.

Only other registered member’s will be able to contact you. All applications for membership are manually reviewed before being accepted by us.

Your online credit card payments are processed by WorldPay, part of the The Royal Bank of Scotland Group, the 5th biggest banking group in the world. WorldPay payment solutions are trusted by thousands of businesses around the world. They guarantee the 100% security of your payment. We have chosen to partner with WorldPay so that you can provide your details with complete confidence and peace of mind.

From the moment you click our registration form and whenever you login to your account you will notice this symbol in the bottom right hand corner of your browser. This indictates that you are in secure ssl mode and all data is being encrypted using 128 bit technology for maximum security.

Always Up To Date

Yes –  new members are put on the service, and engaged members are taken off continously. Save time by contacting Muslim people who really are available for marriage right now.

You Receive Email Alerts of New Members

To save you even more time, we email you the profiles of new members who fit your chosen criteria. You can then decide whether you want to contact them.

You Have Complete Control

Once you login to your secure member area you can – get contacts, change your profile or contact details, view your account details, change your username & password, view your contact history – you have access to all the information you need.

Simple And Easy To Use

Most of our members are not Computer experts and they do not need to be. We have designed our service to be simple to use and obvious.

Remember – you are supported every step of the way

As much support and assistance as you need – we can even help you with your profile… we are only an email away.

Risk Free Trial

We are so confident, that inshallah you will like this service, that we even offer a seven day money back guarantee, subject to terms and conditions.

If up till now you’ve been putting off your search – now you have no excuse – don’t waste anymore time – give it a try – what have you got to lose? To start your RISK FREE and exciting journey in finding that special person in your life.

 

 

 

 

Membership Types

What is the difference between List and Web membership ?

  • With list membership, you receive paper lists every 40 days by courier throughout Pakistan. You also do not need internet access to use this service.
  • All persons are welcome on our web service, so members are not verified by phone on the web service. In our lists, each member is closely verified by phone, so we only allow the best rishtas in our List.
  • Access 100s of highly educated and professional rishtas who do not use the internet for their marriage search, so you can contact many persons who would otherwise be totally unavailable via an internet only service.

 

9 Lists Membership

Gain the following benefits with a 9 month magazine membership :

  • 9 Custom paper-based lists generated according to your requirements sent by courier automatically every month.
  • Get contact details of members directly from the list.
  • Save 1000s and Pay NO Settlement fees.

 

6 Lists Membership

Gain the following benefits with a 6 month magazine membership :

  • 6 Custom paper-based lists generated according to your requirements sent by courier automatically every month.
  • Get contact details of members directly from the list.
  • Save 1000s and Pay NO Settlement fee.

 

3 Lists Membership

Gain the following benefits with a 3 month magazine membership :

  • 3 Custom paper-based lists generated according to your requirements sent by courier automatically every month.
  • Get contact details of members directly from the list.
  • Save 1000s and Pay NO Settlement fee.

 

Web Membership

This membership is a 3 Month Membership and has no charges. Once you have registered and your Membership has been made active by us, you will then be a Member with us for a period of 3 Months during which time your profile description will be viewable on our website and members can contact you.

 



 

Musmat Members Contacting You:
Once you are a Member then other Musmat™ Members can start contacting you immediately either by email or phone(if you have given permission). It does not cost you anything when another member contacts you.

You contacting Musmat Members:
Mashallah one of the reasons Musmat is so successful is that you save so much time by contacting Members by phone rather than by email. You simply call the person and arrange a meeting where you feel they may be suitable for your needs.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Membership Types


Of the many Musmat™ Membership features a few are listed below.

  • Contact other members instantly by telephone/email
  • Add your photograph to your profile to increase your response
  • Get automatic email notifications of new members who have joined and who fit your criteria
  • Fee based service designed to attract only serious people

 

Monthly Membership

This membership is a Monthly Subscription Membership and costs £6.95 per Month. Once you have registered and your Membership has been made active by us, you will then be a Member with us until you decide to cancel your membership. You will be auto-billed for just £6.95 per month and you can cancel at any time. While you are a Member your profile description will be viewable on our website and our other Musmat™ members can start contacting you immediately and you can start contacting them using your Contact Credits. As a special offer upon joining you will also receive 5 free contact credits. Please see the bottom of this page for more details regarding members contacting you and vice-versa.

 

6 Months Membership

This membership is a 6 Months Membership and costs £35. Once you have registered and your Membership has been made active by us, you will then be a Member with us for a period of 6 Months during which time your profile description will be viewable on our website. Once you are a member then our other Musmat™ members can start contacting you immediately and you can start contacting them using your Contact Credits. This membership has no autobilling facility – if you want to renew this membership after it has expired, you will need to complete the membership renewal procedure. As a special offer upon joining you will also receive 10 free contact credits. Please see the bottom of this page for more details regarding members contacting you and vice-versa.

 

12 Months Membership

This membership is a 12 Months Membership and costs £50. Once you have registered and your Membership has been made active by us, you will then be a Member with us for a period of 12 Months during which time your profile description will be viewable on our website and our other Musmat™ members can start contacting you immediately and you can start contacting them using your Contact Credits. This membership has no autobilling facility – if you want to renew this membership after it has expired, you will need to complete the membership renewal procedure. As a special offer upon joining you will also receive 15 free contact credits. Please see the bottom of this page for more details regarding members contacting you and vice-versa.

 



 

Musmat Members Contacting You:
Once you are a Member then other Musmat™ Members can start contacting you immediately either by email or phone (if you have given permission). It does not cost you anything when another member contacts you. Please note when another member requests your contact details your phone number is only given to them if you chose ‘YES‘ to the telephone permisson option during registration, else only your email address will be provided to them. However you have the flexibility to change this option at anytime.

You contacting Musmat Members:
Contact Credits are needed to obtain contact details (email/telephone) of our other Musmat™ members. It costs one contact credit to contact one of our members. Contact Credits cost £1 each. Marshallah one of the reasons Musmat is so successful is that you save so much time contacting Members by phone (the vast majority of our members have given permission for their telephone number to be given to

 

 

 

 

                      

 

 

 

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