When we treat someone badly in the privacy of our homes, Allah is listening
By Zawjah Ali
“You know what our beloved Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) said about rights of wives … ”
She raised her eyebrows as now the ball was in his court.
She continued: “‘The best among you is the one who is best to his wife and I am the best among you.’ See! Did you hear now? You better take me to shopping and be the best.”
“Angels curse women who refuse her husband in bed at night till dawn. So you better fulfill your husband’s right since you cannot afford my wrath:
And now, the husband wins, since the hadith or ayah goes in his favour.
The battle never ends and the vicious cycle goes on.
If we think about it, we tend to find this happening quite often in our daily lives. Women, unfortunately, are more prone to have this habit. We often manipulate others in the name of Islam and use the Qur’an in order to get the desired response. It is nothing more than a psychological attack.
As Muslims, we are required to first learn and implement the obligations towards Allah and other human beings. If we keep fulfilling our responsibilities towards others then there will be no need to remind them of our own rights that are due on them.
Abdullah ibn Umar reported: The Messenger of Allah, (صلى الله عليه وسلم), said:
“Every one of you is a shepherd and is responsible for his flock. The leader of people is a guardian and is responsible for his subjects. A man is the guardian of his family and he is responsible for them. A woman is the guardian of her husband’s home and his children and she is responsible for them. The servant of a man is a guardian of the property of his master and he is responsible for it. Surely, every one of you is a shepherd and responsible for his flock.”
(Sahih Bukhari 6719, Sahih Muslim 1829)
Allah has given importance to the emotional wellbeing of people, specifically of women as they are more prone to sensitivity. The famous incident of Khouwla is a perfect example. Exploring it in length will give a better, clearer idea.
A woman’s plea
قَدْ سَمِعَ اللَّـهُ قَوْلَ الَّتِي تُجَادِلُكَ فِي زَوْجِهَا وَتَشْتَكِي إِلَى اللَّـهِ وَاللَّـهُ يَسْمَعُ تَحَاوُرَكُمَا ۚ إِنَّ اللَّـهَ سَمِيعٌ بَصِيرٌ ﴿١﴾ الَّذِينَ يُظَاهِرُونَ مِنكُم مِّن نِّسَائِهِم مَّا هُنَّ أُمَّهَاتِهِمْ ۖ إِنْ أُمَّهَاتُهُمْ إِلَّا اللَّائِي وَلَدْنَهُمْ ۚ وَإِنَّهُمْ لَيَقُولُونَ مُنكَرًا مِّنَ الْقَوْلِ وَزُورًا ۚ وَإِنَّ اللَّـهَ لَعَفُوٌّ غَفُورٌ ﴿٢﴾ وَالَّذِينَ يُظَاهِرُونَ مِن نِّسَائِهِمْ ثُمَّ يَعُودُونَ لِمَا قَالُوا فَتَحْرِيرُ رَقَبَةٍ مِّن قَبْلِ أَن يَتَمَاسَّا ۚ ذَٰلِكُمْ تُوعَظُونَ بِهِ ۚ وَاللَّـهُ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ خَبِيرٌ ﴿٣﴾
Certainly has Allah heard the speech of the one who argues with you, [O Muhammad], concerning her husband and directs her complaint to Allah. And Allah hears your dialogue; indeed, Allah is Hearing and Seeing.
Those who pronounce thither among you [to separate] from their wives – they are not [consequently] their mothers. Their mothers are none but those who gave birth to them. And indeed, they are saying an objectionable statement and a falsehood. But indeed, Allah is Pardoning and Forgiving.
And those who pronounce thihar from their wives and then [wish to] go back on what they said – then [there must be] the freeing of a slave before they touch one another. That is what you are admonished thereby; and Allah is Acquainted with what you do.
(Qur’an 58: 1-3)
Prophet Muhammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) was in madinah when a woman walked in pleading, crying. She complained about her husband, who in anger had told her, “Now onwards, you are my mother”
This was a common practice among Arabs during the times of ignorance called Thihaar. It was worse than divorce. The woman is devastated – raising her voice, crying, asking for help.
Allah could have sent the ayah before the woman asked RasoolAllah (صلى الله عليه وسلم) for help but He planned that she speak up. She raised her voice so everyone could hear how she was troubled by her husband.
These ayahs came down in response to her plea.
While listening to a lecture on this surah the other day, it touched me deeply to think just how much Allah loves us and the wisdom behind shariah laws. He makes sure everyone’s right is taken care of. The surah starts with the ayah that talks about the attribute of Allah – The Hearer, The Seer.
Allah says that he heard the conversation that occurred between the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) and the woman. Moreover, he also heard the argument that took place between the husband and wife.
This gave me goosebumps.
Imagine your and your spouse’s conversations in private, the bedroom talks, a private zone of yours. And Allah can hear everything. This calls for a check on the content of your conversations.
Men, you better watch out! The woman you abused verbally, the woman you looked down upon, the woman you suppressed … you better watch out what you say and do. What is the punishment waiting for those who abuse their wives physically? Remember, she has the backing of The Most Supreme.
Allah then says that no matter what you call your wife it will not affect the relationship. When we are overwhelmed, they cut off family ties. A father may disown his son when he is hurt. Allah is ready to pardon and forgive. But he has to pay for the humiliation he has caused.
But it was the third ayah that shook me to the core. We tend to forget the things we do or say but we have a good memory when it comes to other’s wrongdoings. In this surah Allah says that these small sins will be a big heap, so abstain from doing little sins, too. When there is proof missing in a court, a crime can’t be proven. But what will happen on the day when the court will be established by the Lord of the universe? A day on which our own body parts will speak against us? It is when He – the Supreme Authority – will do justice.
Every relation is somewhat poisoned by an attitude where we are sugary-sweet in public but full of sarcasm and taunts in private. We assume no one is witness to that dark side of ours.
These ayaat remind us – when we sin, we should never think we are alone.
Islam lays stress on the respect and integrity of all individuals. A group of healthy families form a good community. This is why the surah addresses this issue.
It has calmed my nerves on the one hand, and made me cautious on the other. On a daily basis, our untamed tongues say things that rip someone’s soul apart and we presume no one can question us. But we forget, the person can connect to Allah and complain of our wrongdoing to him. How then can we escape?