Do Not Neglect Your Spouse by Mufti Ismail Menk
1. Consider children a great bounty of Allah Ta’ala. Rejoice at their birth. Congratulate one another on their arrival. Welcome the children into this world with Du’aas of righteousness and blessings. Express your gratitude unto Allah Ta’ala for affording you the opportunity of nurturing a Muslim servant and also for allowing you to leave behind your worldly and religious successor. Make Du‘aa that Allah Ta’ala makes this child an addition to the Muslim Ummah as a Da’i (inviter to Islâm) and a true servant of the Deen.
2. If you don’t have any children, make Du‘â unto Allah Ta’ala for pious children just as Hadrat Zakariyya (alayhis salaam) made Du‘â . He entreated Allah Ta’ala in the following words:
Rabbî Hab Lî min Ladunka Zurriyatan-Tayyibah Innaka Sam‘îud-Duâ.
Trans: “O My Lord! Grant me from your side pleasant children for verily You are very attentive to the prayers (of everyone). [Maryam]
3. Don’t ever be disappointed on the birth of children. Due to financial restraints or health problems or due to any other reason, vigorously refrain from fretting and fuming, from regarding the child as an encumbrance or from belittling or cursing the child.
4. After the birth of the child, wash and clean him up and then call out the Azân in the right ear and Iqâmah in the left ear. There is great wisdom in ensuring that the names of Allah Ta’ala and His Rasulullah fall onto the child’s ears the moment he is born. ‘Allamah Ibnu Qayyim writes in his book Tohfatul-Wadood:
“The purpose of this is to ensure that words denoting the grandeur and greatness of Allah Ta’ala falls first onto the ears of the child. The Shahâdah (attestation) that would Physically admit him into Islâm later on, the words of the same Shahâdah are being dictated to him the day he is born just as the words of the Kalimah are dictated to him when he is breathing his last. Another benefit of calling out the Azân and Iqâmah is that Shaytân , who is just waiting to waylay a person and seeks to entangle a person with a snare of trials and tribulations from the moment he is born, flees the moment he hears the Azân . Before the beckoning of Shaytân , he is summoned to the call of Islâm and the devotion of Allah Ta’ala.”
5. If possible, after the Azân and Iqâmah , get a pious man or woman to chew a piece of date or anything sweet and place it onto the palate of the child and request the pious person to make Du‘â for the child.
6. Choose a suitable name for the child. Name the child after the prophets or the Sâhâbah or add the word ‘Abd to one of the names of Allah Ta’ala like ‘Abdullâh, ‘Abdur-Rahmân etc.
7. If out of ignorance you kept an offensive or unpleasant name, change it with another appropriate name.
8. Perform ‘Aqîqah on the seventh day. Slaughter two animals for a male and one for a female issue. However, slaughtering two animals for a male child is not necessary. Even one would suffice. Thereafter shave the child’s hair and give gold or silver equivalent to the weight of the hair in charity. (You may give cash as well.)
9. On the seventh day, circumcise on the male child. However, if this is not possible by the seventh day, get it done at least before he is seven years old. Khatnah (circumcision) is an Islâmic characteristic.
10. When the child starts talking, teach him the words of “Lâ ilâhâ IllAllah” first.
11. Feed the child with your own milk as well. This is a right of the child over the mother. Breastfeeding is one of the favours the Holy Qurân reminds the children about thereby emphasising the importance of showing kindness to the mother. The child naturally develops more love for the mother who breastfeeds him. Such children are generally more obedient and the mothers also have fewer complains about such children. Coupled with this, it is also the mother’s responsibility that with every drop of milk, she imparts the lesson of Tauhîd, the love of Rasulullah , the devotion to Dîn to the child and also that she endeavours to instil this love in his heart and soul. Do not lighten your burdens and relegate your responsibility onto the father’s shoulders but fulfil this pleasant religious obligation yourself and you will be blessed with spiritual tranquillity and joy. As far as possible, stay away from T‘awizes (amulets etc.) for the children. Instead of utilising T‘awîzes for them, teach them the Du’aas for various occasions. Recite verses of the Holy Qurân and blow on them yourself. Also inculcate in them the habit of reciting the Manzil and memorising the verses contained therein.
12. Refrain from intimidating the child. The anxiety he suffers in these developing years will affect his mind and soul for the rest of his lifetime. Generally, such children are not primed to accomplish any feat of merit. Also, don’t force the child to do anything when he is hungry.
13. Be particularly cautious about scolding, admonishing and rebuking the child for every trivial matter. Instead of showing disgust towards their deficiencies, with wisdom and enthusiasm, endeavour to rear them with love and affection. Nonetheless, your conduct with them should portray that you will not tolerate anything contrary to the Sharî‘ah.
14. Always treat your children with love, affection and warmth. As far as possible, attend to their needs and kindle their spirit of obedience. Avoid questioning the child about Why? When? and Who? Avoid questions like: “Why did you do this? Don’t you have any shame? When would you learn? I don’t know what to do with you!” Instead of admonishing the child in this manner, employ a positive stance. Rub your hand over his head and very affectionately explain that this is not what should be done. Etc. etc.
15. Show love and affection to the younger children. Rub your hands affectionately over their heads. Take them into your lap and love them. Your conduct with them should be one of cheerfulness and joviality. Don’t act like a stern and cruel ruler with them. Conducting yourself in this stern manner will fail to encourage any loving spirit in the hearts of the children for their parents. Also, the children will fail to develop any form of self-confidence and the harsh behaviour of their parents has an adverse effect on the natural nurturing of the child.
16. Expend all your energies in providing your children with decent education and wholesome upbringing. In pursuit of this objective, don’t be the least hesitant. This is your religious obligation, a great favour unto your children and a great act of goodwill unto yourself as well.
17. When the child reaches the age of seven, teach him about the performance of Salâh. Instruct him to observe this act of ‘Ibâdat. Make the girls perform the Salâh with you and send the boys to the Musjid with their father and develop the enthusiasm for the performance of Salâh. When they turn ten and they show any shortcoming in discharging this obligation, punish them appropriately. Let your actions and statements point out to them that you would not tolerate any form of carelessness in the discharge of this duty.
18. When they turn ten, separate their beds and make each one of them sleep on separate beds.
19. Always keep the children clean and tidy. Be very particular about their hygiene, bathing and cleanliness. Ensure that their clothes are clean and Pâk. However, abstain from excessive grooming and vanity. Keep the girls clothing simple as well. Don’t ruin the morals of the boys by making them wear flamboyant and gaudy clothing.
20. Avoid mentioning their faults in front of others. Be very cautious about putting the child to shame. At all costs, refrain from bruising his ego. Similarly, when one of them errs, don’t scold all of them. Advise the offender separately or take appropriate action against him alone.
21. In front of the children, don’t reveal your despair over their failure to rectify themselves. In fact, to boost their spirits, praise them wholeheartedly even over trivial achievements. Always try to encourage them and raise their spirit of self-confidence.
22. Relate to them the stories of the Prophets . Explain how they invited the non-Muslims to Islâm and what role their character played in attracting the infidels to Islâm. Also narrate to them incidents from the lives of the Sahâbah and other pious people. Regard such narration as crucial for their morals and for the development of their affiliation towards Dîn. In spite of your thousand and one other chores, take out a bit of time for this as well. May Allah Ta’ala assist you and all the other Muslim mothers.
23. Periodically, make the children distribute alms, food etc. to the poor with their on hands. This would promote a spirit of sympathy and generosity towards the poor. Now and again, allow them to distribute food, (sweets etc.) to their other siblings as well as this would engender a sense of recognising the rights of others and create a spirit of impartiality amongst them.
24. Do not comply with the child’s every whim and fancy. With tact and wisdom, try to dissuade the child from this habit. Employ a bit of harshness now and again. Don’t turn them into obstinate and adamant children by showering them with misplaced love.
25. Avoid speaking in harsh tones. Avoid yelling and shrieking and advise the children to speak in a moderate and gentle tone as well. Also stress upon them to avoid shouting and yelling at one another.
26. Develop amongst them the habit of doing everything by themselves. They should avoid depending on the servants for every little thing.
27. If there is a squabble amongst children, don’t side with your child unfairly. Remember, just as you cherish certain feelings in favour of your child, other parents also cherish the same feelings in favour of their children. Also, don’t allow the complaints of your sister-in-law’s children or the complaints of the neighbours to reach your husband.
28. Always be impartial to all your children. Be very cautious and refrain from showing favouritism at all costs. If you have a greater inclination to one of your children you are excused but as far as your conduct, behaviour and dealings are concerned, you should be impartial and fair to each one of them.
29. Always be an excellent example to your children. You are unto your children a perpetual and silent teacher who is always studied and scrutinised by the children. Even in jest, do not speak lies before your children.
30. Be cheerful on the birth of a daughter just as you are cheerful on the birth of a son. Girls or boys, both are blessings of Allah Ta’ala. Allah alone knows which is best for you; a boy or a girl. Similarly, don’t express displeasure when one of your sister’s-in-law gives birth to a girl child. Also don’t pressure your sister-in-law or your brother’s in laws to give gifts etc. on this occasion, thereby attracting their curses. Forcing others to give presents renders one guilty of accepting or partaking of Harâm wealth. It appears in the Hadîth that Rasulullah said: “Behold! The wealth of a person is not Halâl except with the happiness of the heart.” [Mishkât Page 255 Hadîth 8] May Allah Ta’ala protect us all from Harâm gifts.
31. Bring up your daughters with heartfelt joy, devout happiness, and a sense of religious spirit. In compensation of this, cherish the hope of Jannah from Allah Ta’ala.
32. Do not regard the female child as inferior to the male and do not give him preference over her. Expose the same love for both of them and conduct yourself impartially with both of them.
33. With enthusiasm and care, ensure that you give the girls their fixed share of a deceased’s estate. Also, be specific in your will about depriving the daughters of their share of the inheritance. Make sure you study books on this subject like Tarîqa-e-Wasiyyat and Ahkâm-e-Mayyit.
34. The ideal mother is she who instils the honour and esteem of her husband into the hearts of her children. She explains in various ways the status he commands as a leader and chief of the household. For instance, when something crops up, she responds by saying: “We’ll ask your father when he returns. We’ll do it if he agrees otherwise not because there is always good in obeying him. Allah Ta’ala is also pleased. Dad is the leader of the household. Obedience to the leader in permissible matters removes a number of calamities and this also attracts the mercy of Allah Ta’ala.” Etc. etc.
35. Similarly, the ideal mother is she who refrains from arguing and quarrelling with her husband in front of her children. In spite of the most detestable behaviour of her husband, she exercises patience in front of them and submits to the husband: “Yes, I was at fault, I am sorry. This won’t happen in the future.” Then when she is alone with him, she explains the proper situation to him and that she didn’t say anything at that time because of the children. Similarly, the ideal mother is she who refrains from giving the husband and children any sad news the moment they come home. She does not pounce on them with a volley of questions nor does she criticise them on any of their shortcomings the moment they step foot into the house. Instead, she greets them with Salâm, feeds them properly and then she says what has to be said.
36. The ideal mother is she who tries to maintain between two children an appropriate gap that allows the first one to complete breastfeeding and become a bit self-sufficient and also it affords the mother to overcome her weakness she suffered due to childbirth and breastfeeding. This gives her the opportunity to lighten her shoulders from the turmoil of a very young child. Now when she has no other valid Shar‘î excuse, she prepares herself for the next child so that each one of them can be brought up correctly and each one is awarded individual attention. This gap also offers her the opportunity to offer each child her individual attention and also it also allows her to recuperate after the weakness of childbirth, breastfeeding etc. Also, this gap ensures that the milk she is presently feeding is not adversely affected by another pregnancy. Therefore, it is recommended that the couple employ temporary measures of birth control and maintain a reasonable gap between their children. In fact, in view of the health of the mother or the child or on grounds of compelling reasons, after consulting with the Muftîs, she may even maintain a longer gap provided her intentions are not warped.
37. The ideal mother is she who honours her husband’s as well as her own mother in a manner pleasing unto Allah Ta’ala and this in turn engenders the same graciousness, Dînî spirit and honour amongst her children as well. She who happens to be a “coolness unto the eyes” of her mother and the husband’s mother, her children will also be a “coolness unto her eyes”.
38. The ideal mother is she who practises upon the advices proffered in this book and endeavours to instil these attributes into her Muslim sisters as well. She also encourages her Muslim sisters to read this book and books like Tohfa-e-Khawâtîn, Tohfa-e-Dulhan, Fadâil-e-A‘amâl, Fadâil-e-Sadaqât. She also makes Du‘â for the compiler of this book and the people who have assisted in its publication and also for those men and women engaged in the effort of Dîn.
39. Do not keep two daughters-in-law of conflicting temperament together. Ensure that you don’t get two of your sons married at the same time. If you have to do this, ensure that they stay separately. This arrangement encompasses a number of benefits and advantages to all parties concerned. For further information on this topic, read the book Tohfa-e-Dulhâ under the chapter “advices to the parents of the groom”.
40. When your daughter reaches the age of seven, bring her up in such a manner that she avoids shaking hands with men and she covers all her hair when she steps out of the home. Also, from an early age, develop the habit of making her wear long tops and (cotton) pants so that her legs remain covered at all times.
41. Together with the aforementioned strategies, make Du’aas for your children with ardent zeal and enthusiasm. Also abstain from the disobedience of Allah Ta’ala and restrain others from the same. It is hoped that Allah Ta’ala would not thrust aside the sincere Du’aas emanating from the depths of the parent’s hearts.
By Mufti Abdur Rahman ibn Yusuf Mangera
In the name of Allah, the Inspirer of truth.
In life, it is quite natural that things don’t always necessarily go the way we want them to. Life is full of difficulties, challenges and obstacles. What defines whether a person will be successful in this life is the knowledge of how to deal with these problems in a correct and wise way. This is what our religion teaches us – belief in Allah and the firm acceptance that He is our Lord and Sustainer helps us to rise above our self-centred natures as we have a higher authority to invoke, to please, to seek support from and from whom we receive rewards in this life and the next. A believer’s trust in Allah makes him understand that despite all the apparent negativities that may surround him at any point in his life, if he continues to do the right thing in the right way, that is according to deen, then Allah will help him and guide him towards a better end, as Allah is the Wise, the All-knowing.
Complaining about our spouses
Many of us may have witnessed within our own family or elsewhere a married couple experiencing problems with each other – a few months into the marriage when the romantic period, where everything seemed to smell of roses, is gone, the defects of the spouse begin to become apparent. Each begins to see shortcomings in the other that they hadn’t noticed thus far and may even begin to regret having married his/her partner. So the first thing they do, particularly so for women, is that they call their mother. Mothers will quite naturally be partial to their own son or daughter. This is the reality and mothers are not to be blamed for that, it’s just the way they are (and may Allah bless them for it as the positive aspect of this is truly beneficial for us). Even supposedly ‘tough’ fathers are sometimes guilty of this favouritism too!
In a related story, it is mentioned that there was a woman who called her mother every single time she had a problem with her husband. While her mother would normally listen to her complaints and both would engage in a back-biting session, on one occasion the woman was surprised to hear a different answer from her mother. She asked her: “Have you prayed to Allah first to resolve your matter?” The daughter was very surprised as her mother had never asked anything like this before. She continued: “Look my girl. I love you a lot, but I think it’s unfair for us to keep talking about your husband like this.” The daughter was dumbstruck. She was completely caught by surprise by the response, because this was the same mother who had always listened attentively to her and supported her, who would suggest retorts to the husband and who had blindly taken her side in every situation. Surprising as it may have been to the daughter, the mother had become aware of the fact that supporting her daughter in back-biting the son-in-law was not helping the situation in any way. The mother then explained: “You and your husband have a very special relationship, which I don’t have with your husband. Whatever happens between the two of you, it’s much easier for you to resolve it amongst yourselves, to overlook and to be patient and forgive each other. I’m looking at the situation as a third party, with emotional attachments to you alone and not to him, so I don’t want you to call me anymore about this problem.” The words of the mother hit home and the daughter understood that it was her own responsibility to deal with her issues. Soon Allah most High gave her the wisdom to approach them herself and the problems were soon resolved between husband and wife. This mother had some wisdom in what she said to her daughter. Many parents are not like this and will continue to carelessly engage in back-biting to support their children. If our parents speak ill of our spouses, even if they are perfect for us, we will also inevitably begin to think ill of them. Although it is very difficult, we must be able to politely tell our parents that what they expect and what we expect from our spouses may not be the same thing and that nothing more needs to be said.
Another common problem between spouses that can be extremely detrimental for relationships is the concept of ‘emotional blackmail’. When tensions rise, the husband can be quick to say, “I’ll divorce you!” and the wife may be even quicker to respond, “Give me a divorce then! If you don’t like me, why don’t you really do it?” Although in most cases they don’t really mean what they are saying at all, but are simply in a state of heightened emotion and getting carried away, spouses may say things like this to each other. In some extreme cases, these sorts of outbursts even lead to actual divorces, despite the fact that they didn’t really mean any of it when the argument started. We must understand that the words we utter from our mouths can have a significant impact on our lives, whether we consider them seriously or not. So important an issue is the impact of words that the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) used to change the names of people who had names carrying bad meanings, replacing them with pleasant ones. On one such occasion he came across a man who was called Hazn, meaning ‘the aggrieved one’, and so changed his name to Sahl, meaning ‘easy-going’.
Just as names and the words we utter have an impact on us, so too must we realise that if we keep saying bad things to each other, whether we actually mean them or not, then Shaytan will seize that opportunity to create discord between two people, especially spouses. Sometimes people are simply not in the right state of mind to consider things calmly: the husband may have had a rough day at work, struggled through terrible traffic and when he arrives home he may be stressed, hungry, tired and frustrated. Similarly, the wife may have had a particularly tiring day at home, with the children playing up or just feeling the mental drain of no adult company all day. So in those moments it is especially important to reflect on how we should greet each other, what we say to each other and the way we say it as well.
We must be able to admit that we all make mistakes and sometimes behave with each other in ways we shouldn’t. But even when we realise that we have made a mistake in our behaviour, our arrogance keeps us from going to our partner and saying salaam, from making peace. The Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) said: “The one who says salaam first, is free from arrogance” (Bayhaqi). This arrogance is the very thing that keeps us from reconciling – we carry a false notion that if we admit our own fault, our spouse will always try to take advantage over us. In reality, admitting the mistake to the wife or husband will most likely make love increase. The practice of admitting mistakes and reconciling with our partner will increase the probability that they will also return the favour when a mistake is made by him or her. Saying kind words, bringing gifts, being the first one to say salaam, asking about how each other’s days have been and overall trying to make the other understand that we really care; these are the things that ‘score points’ with our spouse. We have to make an active effort to do these kinds of things and we must be aware of what our spouses need. Men and women are not the same and will appreciate different things. Women may feel cared for through gifts while a man presented with the same gift would find it an insult to his manhood! A man may simply crave his wife’s womanly attention and care. At the end of the day, the more points a couple can score with each other the happier and more romantic their relationship will be.
Many men think that as soon as children arrive they become more important than their wives. In the example of the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) and the Companions, the focus of love is on the relationship between spouses, not between parents and children. The parent-child relationship should be more focussed on tarbiya, that is bringing up children with sound moral and social values. Researchers are now saying that the wife should have more priority in the eyes of her husband than the children, due to the fact that a happy and loving relationship between husband and wife in a family means they are more likely to be on the same page when it comes to this tarbiya and raising their children. Otherwise, if there is a dispute between the two of them, it is sadly often seen that out of spite for the other the wife or husband will sometimes allow the children to do things that the other one doesn’t approve of! Thus the children become tools by which the spouses poke at each other in their dispute. It can easily be seen the kinds of values these children will grow up with. If the husband and wife both make each other their first priority, these issues should not arise and they are more likely to have a healthier and happier household.
Dealing with differences
As human beings we are all created with unique personalities, and thus it is expected that our mentalities will not always be on the same wavelength as our partners’. As time goes on and the marital relationship becomes more mature, the husband and wife may both come across many issues on which they don’t think the same way and this is perfectly normal! These differences shouldn’t have to cause any problems in the marriage unless the husband or the wife, or both, state blatantly that they are not on the same page. Such a statement can generally prove to be very detrimental as it indicates to the other person that “we are different” or “we should not be together.” In cases of difference in opinion, being outspoken without considering the emotions of the other can be extremely detrimental to the relationship. Instead, both should assess the situation and try to find out what makes his or her partner think differently and thus come to a compromising middle point.
From the very initial stages of marriage we should always be considering these sorts of issues to allow us to build a good relationship in the long run. Rather than allowing anything to escape our lips in a fit of rage, we should consider the implications that our words will carry in the future and how these words will impact the relationship. It’s unfortunate that so many couples have overlooked these problems and year after year they have had to endure a terrible relationship with their partner. It may come to a point where they completely give up hope on making things better and learn to live in dispute forever! Imagine the message that this gives to the children of such a family. Children will learn the secrets to living a happy life from their parents. Where else will they learn it from? All that is shown on television are the sensationalist dramas that represent to them the worst kinds of family disputes: disloyalty, unfaithfulness, infidelity, abuse. These are what make the TV shows juicy but sadly they are only reflections of what a child may be seeing in their own household between their very own parents.
At this point, whether our marriage is in its early stages or further ahead down the line, we must understand that having problems in a relationship is normal but we must not let it stay in that state for long – active steps must be taken to make our relationships better. The first thing one can do is to contact someone who can help. It doesn’t matter if it has already been 20 years. This someone can be an Islamic scholar with whom you have a good relationship and you have confidence in the soundness of his Islamic knowledge and practice; it can be an uncle or an aunt who understands you and can give good advice; or it can even be a dear friend. This is where good social relationships can come to our assistance. Identify the cause of the problem and ask someone to help in solving it. These problems may sometimes be caused by certain personality traits, or a specific issue such as jealousy, arrogance, or lust for certain haram things etc. There are specific adhkar and other a’mal that can help in such cases and help us to get rid of these problems. The key here is making the intention to seek out our own flaws, find solutions for them and then to take proper actions. If a doctor gives us medicine for a problem that we’ve had for a long time, then we must expect to spend some time and effort to follow the prescription of the doctor properly to get rid of the long-standing disease. Similarly, when an Islamic Scholar, a Shaykh, gives us a spiritual prescription to solve the issues in our family life that we may have had for years, we also must be careful and diligent and expect to spend some time in following those guidelines to rid us of our problem.
Our deen is an all-encompassing lifestyle. The Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) dealt with all of these kinds of issues and has left a perfect example for us to follow. We should never hesitate to ask for help and guidance from others and must make continuous and abundant du’a to Allah most High. We should establish relationships with the respected ‘ulama, so that we can turn to them when we need assistance. Good relationships with family and friends are extremely beneficial for helping to resolve household disputes should they arise, so we should always maintain good ties with the people around us. Islam is a social religion and we are social beings —we have not been enjoined with hermitic life, or with an existence living alone, angry with everyone else. It is mentioned in a hadith that the believer is a place of affection: there is no good in the one who is not affectionate and interacting well with others and people do not interact well with him (see Musnad Ahmad). Thus good social interaction can take us to great heights. We must commit to identify the root of the problems we face in our relationships, seeking help from Allah. We should act upon wise counsel with determination and strive to build a strong relationship with our spouse which inshaAllah will in turn ensure the sound upbringing and nurturing of our children.
Transcribed by Mohammad Asif ul Haq
Edited by Mirina Paananen
When none believed me, Khadijah (R.A) did. She made me a partner in her wealth.”Those are the words of our Holy Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu-Alayhi-Wasallam) about his wife the great Muslim lady, Hazrat `Khadija-tul-Kubra’ (R.A).
Khadijah (R.A), married the Holy Prophet (Sallallahu-Alayhi-Wasallam) when she was 40 and he was 25. They had six children: two sons, Qasim and Abdullah (also known as Tahir and Tayyib), and four daughters: Zainub, Ruqaiyyah, Umm Kulthum and Fatimah (Radhiyallahu-Anhum-Ajmaeen).
Khadijah (R.A) lived with the Prophet (Sallallahu-Alayhi-Wasallam) for 25 years and was his only wife during that time. When the revelations came from Allah and Muhammad (Sallallahu-Alayhi-Wasallam) was made the Last Prophet, it was Khadijah (R.A) who accepted the faith and became the first Muslim. She was 55 years old at that time. Her acceptance of Islam greatly helped its spread among the Makkans.
She stood by the Prophet (Sallallahu-Alayhi-Wasallam) all the time. In moments of trial and difficulty the Prophet (Sallallahu-Alayhi-Wasallam) used to come to her and she consoled and comforted her husband and encouraged him. Khadijah’s (R.A) wealth was used for the cause of Islam. The Prophet (Sallallahu-Alayhi-Wasallam) remained busy in preaching Islam and his devoted and loving wife looked after the children and family affairs.
The Prophet (Sallallahu-Alayhi-Wasallam) and Khadijah (R.A) had many sorrows. they had to bear the death of their sons Qasim and Abdullah (Radhiyallahu-Anhum) in their infancy and in the fifth year of Prophet hood (Hijrah) their daughter Ruqaiyyah (R.A) left them and migrated to Abyssinia (Ethiopia) with her Husband, Hazrat Uthman bin Affan (Radhiyallahu-Anhu). Ruqaiyyah (R.A) left her parents at a very young age and returned after four years; that time was a long and painful separation for her parents, Khadijah (R.A) and Muhammad (Sallallahu-Alayhi-Wasallam).
During the Prophet hood, the Quraish did all they could to stop the Prophet (Sallallahu-Alayhi-Wasallam) preaching Islam. Nothing worked. The Prophet (Sallallahu-Alayhi-Wasallam) continued his mission, relying on Allah. Hazrat Khadijah (R.A) was his source of encouragement and comfort. She also had to bear enormous strain and suffering during the boycott at Sha’bi (the valley of) Abu Talib for three years.
The great Muslim lady Khadijah (R.A) passed away on 10th Ramadhan in the tenth year of Hijrah, 620 CE, at the age of 65. Her death was a great loss to the Prophet (Sallallahu-Alayhi-Wasallam). He said:
“I cannot bear the scene, I believe that Allah has kept much good in it.”
He loved Khadijah (R.A) so dearly that after her death he used to remember her often. Hazrat Khadijah’s (R.A) status was such that the Angel Jibraeel (Alayhis-Salaam) used to bring salaam (greetings) for her from Almighty Allah.
Young Muslim Sisters should know how devoted Khadijah (R.A) was to her husband and how much she did for him for the cause of Allah. Any Muslim of today would feel proud to have such a wife. The world could be changed by great Muslim ladies like Hazrat Khadijah (R.A).
She was the daughter of Harith bin Hazan. Her original name was Barrah but she was later renamed Maimoonah by the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) . She was first married to Abu Rahim bin Abdul Uzza. According to some reports, she was married twice before she became Ummul Mominin. She had been widowed lately when the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) married her at Saraf, a place lying on his journey to Mecca for ‘Umrah in Zul Qa’dah 7 A.H. He had intended to start living with her when in Mecca after performing ‘Umrah but, as Qureysh did not allow him to enter Mecca, he called her over to him in the same place on his return journey. Many years later she died and was buried exactly at the same place in 51 A. H. (when she was 81).
This is a strange coincidence that at a certain place during one Journey she is married, at the same place on the return journey she starts living with the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) and at the very place during another journey she dies and is buried.
Hadhrat Aishah (R.A) says: “Maimoonah was the most pious, and the most mindful of her kith and kin, among the Prophet Mohammad’s (صلى الله عليه وسلم) wives.”
Hadhrat Yazid bin Asam (R.A) says: “She was seen either engaged in Salaat or in domestic work. When she was doing neither, she was busy in Miswak.” She was the last woman to be married by the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) . Certain Muhaddithin have, however, mentioned one or two other marriages contracted by the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) .
She was the daughter of Hayi, Who was a descendant of Hadhrat Harun (a.s) the brother of Moosa (a.s). She was first married to Salam bin Mishkam and then to Kinallah bin Abi Huqaiq at the time of Khevbar. Kinallah was killed in the battle and she was captured by the Muslims. Hadhrat Dahya Kalbi (Radhiyallaho anha) requested for a maid, and the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) made her over to him. At this, the other Sahabah approached the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) and said:
“O, Prophet of Allah! Banu Nazir and Banu Quraizah (the Jewish tribes of Madinah) will feel offended to see the daughter of a Jewish chief working as a maid. We therefore suggest that she may be taken as your own wife.”
The Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) paid a reasonable sum of money to Hadhrat Dahya (r.a) as ransom, and said to Safiyyah: “You are now free; if you like you can go back to your tribe or can be my wife.”
She said: “I longed to be with you while I was a Jew. How can I leave you now, when I am a Muslim?�
This is probably a reference to the fact that she once saw in her dream a portion of the moon falling into her lap. When she mentioned her dream to Kinanah, he smote her face so severely that she developed a mark on her eye. He said: “You seem to be desiring to become the wife of the King of Madinah.”
Her father is also reported to have treated her similarly when she related the same or similar dream to him. She again saw (in her dream) the sun lying on her breast. When she mentioned this to her husband, he remarked:
“You seem to be wishing to become the Queen of Madinah.”
She says: “I was seventeen when I was married to the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) . She came to live with the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) when he was camping at the first stage from Khaiber. Next morning, he said to the Sahabah: “Let everybody bring whatever he has got to eat.”
They brought their own dates, cheese, butter, etc. A long leather sheet was spread and all sat round it to share the food among themselves. This was the Walimah for the marriage.
She died in Ramadan, 50 A. H., when she was about 60.
Hadrath Umme Habibah (Radhiyallaho anha): She was the daughter of Abu Sufyan, and was first married to Ubaidullah bin Jahsh in Mecca. The couple embraced Islam, and then emigrated to Abyssinia due to persecution by the Qureysh. One night she saw her husband (in a dream) in the most ugly and obnoxious form. The next day she came to know that he had turned Christian. She, however, remained a Muslim and was therefore separated from him.
She was now all alone in exile. But Allah soon recompensed her loss. The Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) sent her an offer of marriage through the King Negus, who sent a woman named Abrahah to her with the message. She was so happy with the good news that she made over the bracelets and other jewellery that she was wearing to the woman in gratification. King Negus represented the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) Nikah ceremony, and gave her 400 dinars as her portion and many other things in dowry from himself. He also gave a feast and dinars as gift to all those who were present in the ceremony. The Negus then dispatched her to Madinah, with her dowry and other gifts such as perfume, etc. This marriage took place in 7 A. H. (Her father was not a Muslim then).
She most probably died in 44 A.H.
Hadhrat Juwairiah (Radhiyallaho anha) was the daughter of Harith, the chief of Banu Mustaliq and was married to Musafe’ bin Safwan.
She was one of the large number of captives who fell into Muslim hands after the battle of Muraisee’, and she was given to Hadhrat Thabit bin Qais (R.A). He offered to release her for 360 Dirhams. She came to the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) and said: “O, Prophet of Allah! I am the daughter of Harith who is the chief of the, and you know my story. The ransom demanded by Hadhrat Thabit (R.A) is too much for me. I have come to seek your help in the matter.”
The Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) agreed to pay her ransom, set her free, and offered to take her as his wife. She was very glad to accept this offer. She was married to the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) in 5 A.H. and as a consequence of this marriage, the prisoners of Banu Mustaliq (Juwairiah’s tribe), about a hundred families, were all set free by the Muslims. “The tribe which so honoured by the Prophet Mohammad’s (صلى الله عليه وسلم) relationship, they said, should not remain in slavery.”
Such were the noble expediences in all the marriages of the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم). Hadhrat Juwairiah (R.A) was pretty, her face was very attractive. Three days before her falling captive in the battle, she had seen in her dream the moon coming out from Madinah and falling into her lap. She says: “When I was captured, I began to hope that my dream would come true.”
She was 20 at the time of her marriage with the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم). She died in Rabi-ul-Awwal, 50 A.H., in Madinah at the age of 65.
She was the Prophet Mohammad’s (صلى الله عليه وسلم) cousin. She was first given in marriage by the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) to his adopted son Hadhrat Zaid bin Harithah (Radhiyallaho anho). When Hadhrat Zaid (Radhiyallaho anho) divorced her, she was married to the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) by command of Allah, as mentioned in Surah Al Ahzab. This took place in 5 A.H., at that time she was 35. She was therefore born 17 years before Nubuwwat. She was always proud of the fact that, the other wives while all the other wives were given in marriage to the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) by their guardians, it was Allah Himself Who did this for her.
When Hadhrat Zaid (Radhiyallaho anho) divorced her and she had completed her Iddat, the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) sent the proposal to her. She said: “I cannot say anything until I have consulted my Allah.” She performed Wudhu, said two rakaat of Salaat, and prayed to Allah: “O, Allah! Thy Prophet proposes to marry me. If I am fit for the honor, then give me in his marriage.” Allah answered her prayer by revealing the following verse to the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) :
“So when Zaid had performed the necessary formality (of divorce) from her, we gave her unto thee in marriage, so that (henceforth) there may be no sin for believers in respect of the wives of their adopted sons, when the latter have performed the necessary formality (of release) from them. The Commandment of Allah must be fulfilled.” (XXXIII:37)
When she received the good news about this revelation, she prostrated before Allah in thanksgiving. Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) arranged a big feast of Walimah for this marriage. A goat was slaughtered and mutton-curry with bread was served to the guests. People came in groups, and were served till all of them were fed.
Hadhrat Zainab (Radhiyallaho anha) had a very large heart for spending in the way of Allah. She earned by working with her hands and spent all “her earnings in charity. It was about her that the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) prophesied:
“My wife with long hands will be the first to meet me after my death.” The wives took this to mean the physical length of arms and began to measure their hands with a stick. The hands of Hadhrat Saudah (Radhiyallaho anha) came out to be the longest by measurement. But when Hadhrat Zainab (Radhiyallaho anha) died first, the meaning of the metaphor used by the Prophet Mohammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) dawned upon them. She fasted very often. She died in 20 and ‘Umar (Radhiyallaho anho) led the funeral service. She fifty at the time of her death.
Hadhrat Umme Salamah was the daughter of Hadhrat Abu Ummayyah (Radhiyallaho anhu). She was first married to her cousin Hadhrat bin Abdul Asad known as Abu Salamah (Radhiyallaho anhu). The couple embraced Islam in the very beginning and emigrated to Abyssinia, due to the persecutions of Qureysh. A son was born to them in exile, who was named Salamah. After returning from Abyssinia, the family emigrated to Madinah. Hadhrat Umme Salamah’s (Radhiyallaho anha) story about her journey to Madinah, has been already given in the early part of the chapter. After reaching Madinah, Hadhrat Umme Salmah (Rad laho anha) got another son ‘Umar and two daughters Durrah and Zainab (Radhiyallaho anhum).
Hadhrat Abu Salamah (Radhiyallaho anho) was the eleventh man to embrace Islam. He participated in the battle of Badr as well as in Uhud. He got a severe wound in Uhud, which did not heal for a long time. He was sent by the Prophet Mohammad (Sallallaho Alaihe Wasallam) in an expedition in Safar, 4 A. H. When he returned from the expedition, the old wound again started giving trouble and at last he died of the same on 8th Jamadil-Akhir, 4 A. H. Hadhrat Umme Salamah (Radi-allaho anha) was pregnant at the time. Zainab was born to her after the death of her husband. After Umme Salamah had completed her Iddat (waiting period), Hadhrat Abu Bakr (Radlaho anho) proposed to marry her, but she declined.
Later, the Prophet Mohammad (Sallallaho Alaihe Wasallam) offered to marry her. She said: “O, Prophet of Allah! I have quite a few children with me and I am very sensitive by nature. Moreover, a people are in Mecca, and their permission for getting remarried is necessary.”
The Prophet Mohammad (Sallallaho Alaihe Wasallam) said: “Allah will look after your children and your sensitiveness will vanish in due course. None of people will dislike the proposed marriage”.
Hadhrat Umme Salamah then asked her (eldest) son Hadhrat Salamah (Radhiyallaho anho) to serve as her guardian and give her in marriage to the Prophet Mohammad (Sallallaho Alaihe Wasallam) She was married in the end of Shawwal, 4 A. H. She says: “I had heard from the Prophet Mohammad (Sallallaho Alaihe Wasallam) that a person struck with a calamity should recite this prayer:
“O, Allah! Recompense me for this affliction by giving me something better than what I have lost: then Allah would accept his prayer.” I had been reciting this prayer since the death of Hadhrat Abu Salamah (Radhiyallaho anho), but I could not imagine a husband better than he, till Allah arranged my marriage with the Prophet Mohammad (Sallallaho Alaihe Wasallam) .” Hadhrat Aishah (Radhiyallaho anha) says:
“Umme Salamah (Radhiyallaho anha) was famous for her beauty. Once I contrived to see her. I found her much more beautiful than I had heard. I mentioned this to Hafsah who said. “In my opinion, she is not as beautiful as people say.” She was the last of the Prophet Mohammad (Sallallaho Alaihe Wasallam) wives to die. It was in 59 or 62 A. H. She was 84 at the time of her death, and as such she was born 9 years before Nubuwwat.
As already been said, the Prophet Mohammad (Sallallaho Alaihe Wasallam) married Hadhrat Umme Salamah after the death of Hadhrat Zainab Khuzaimah (Radhiyallaho anha). She therefore lived in Hadhrat Zainab’s (Radhiyallaho anha) house. She found a had-mill, a kettle and some barley in an earthen jar, lying in the house. Hadhrat Umme Salamah milled some barley and after putting some fat cooked a preparation, which she served to the Prophet Mohammad (Sallallaho Alaihe Wasallam) on the very first day of her marriage with him.