Archive for the Advice for Husbands Category

The Ethics of Chivalry

Posted in Advice for Husbands, Marriage Coaching, The Prophet and his Wives on April 1, 2010 by Shaz

Written by Imam Zaid Shakir

In the literature discussing Futuwwa, which has been translated as Muslim chivalry, there is the story of a young man who was engaged to marry a particularly beautiful woman. Before the wedding day, his fiancée was afflicted with a severe case of chicken pox which left her face terribly disfigured. Her father wrote to him informing him of the situation and asking if he preferred to call off the wedding. The young man replied that he would still marry his daughter, but that he had recently experienced a gradual loss of sight, which he feared would culminate in blindness.

The wedding proceeded as planned and the couple had a loving and happy relationship until the wife died twenty years later. Upon her death the husband regained his eyesight. When asked about his seemingly miraculous recovery he explained that he could see all along. He had feigned blindness all those years because he did not want to offend or sadden his wife.

From our jaded or cynical vantage points it is easy to dismiss such a story as a preposterous fabrication. To do so is to miss an important point that was not lost to those who circulated and were inspired by this and similar tales. Namely, our religion is not an empty compilation of laws and strictures. The law is important and willingly accepting it is one of the keys to our salvation. However, the law is also a means to point us toward a higher ethical end. We are reminded in the Qur’an, “Surely, the prayer wards off indecency and lewdness.” (29:45)

The Prophet Muhammad mentioned concerning the fast, “One who does not abandon false speech and acting on its imperatives, God has no need that he gives up his food and drink.” (Al-Bukhari) These narrations emphasize that there is far more to Islam than a mere adherence to rulings.

This is especially true in our marriages. Too many Muslims are involved in marriages that devolve into an empty observation of duties and an equally vacuous demand for the fulfillment of rights. While such practices are laudable in their proper context, when they are divorced from kindness, consideration, empathy, and true commitment they define marriages that become a fragile caricature. Such relationships are irreparably shattered by a silly argument, a few wrinkles on the face, unwanted pounds around the waist, a personality quirk or a whimsical desire to play the field to see if one can latch on to someone prettier, wealthier, younger, or possibly more exciting than one’s spouse.

These are issues that affect men and women. However, we men must step up and do our part to help to arrest the alarmingly negative state of gender relations in our communities. The level of chivalry the current crisis demands does not require that we pretend to be blind for twenty years. However, it does require some serious soul searching, and it demands that we ask ourselves some hard questions. For instance, why are so many Muslim men averse to marrying older or previously married women? The general feeling among the women folk in our communities is that if you are not married by the age of twenty-five, then you have only two chances of being married thereafter –slim and none. This sentiment pervades our sisters’ minds and hearts because of the reality they experience. Many brothers who put off marriage until they are past thirty-five will oftentimes marry someone close to half their age, passing over a generation of women who are intellectually and psychologically more compatible with them and would prove wiser parents for their children.

Despite this problem, and the clear social, psychological and cultural pathologies it breeds, many of us will hasten to give a lecture reminding our audience of the fact that Khadija, the beloved wife of our Prophet, was fifteen years his senior. We might even mention that she and several of his other wives were previously married. Why is it that what was good enough for our Prophet is repugnant to ourselves or our sons?

A related question would be, “Why are so many of our brothers so hesitant to marry strong, independent and intellectually astute women?” Many women in the West lack the support of extended family networks, which is increasingly true even in the Muslim world. Therefore, they must seek education or professional training to be in a position to support themselves if necessary, or to assist their husbands; an increasingly likely scenario owing to the nature of work in postindustrial societies. This sociological fact leads to women in the West generally manifesting a degree of education and independence that might not be present among women in more traditional societies and times – even though such societies are rapidly disappearing.

Many Muslim men will pass over talented, educated women who are willing to put their careers and education on hold, if need be, to commit to a family. The common reason given is that such women are too assertive, or they are not the kind of women the prospective husband’s mother is used to. As a result a significant number of our sisters, despite their beauty, talent, maturity, and dynamism are passed over for marriage in favour of an idealised, demure “real” Muslim woman. The social consequences of this practice are extremely grave for our community.

Again, we can ask ourselves, “To what extent does this practice conform to the prophetic model?” Our Prophet was surrounded by strong, assertive and independent women. His beloved Khadija, who we have previously mentioned, was one of the most successful business people in the Arabian Peninsula, and her wealth allowed the Prophet to retreat to the Cave of Hira where he would receive the first revelation.

Ayesha, despite her young age was an assertive, free-spirited, intellectual powerhouse who would become one of the great female scholars in history. The foundation for her intellectual greatness was laid by the Prophet himself who recognised her brilliance. Zainab bint Jahsh ran a “non-profit” organisation. She would make various handicrafts, sell them in the market and then use the proceeds to secretly give charity to the poor people of Medina. Umm Salamah had the courage to migrate from Mecca to Medina, unescorted, although she was ultimately accompanied by a single rider. She also had the vision to resolve the crisis at Hudaybiyya. These were all wives of the Prophet. To their names we could add those of many other strong and dynamic women who played a major role in the life of the fledgling Muslim community.

Another issue that is leading to many otherwise eligible women remaining single relates to color. If a panel of Muslim men, whose origins were in the Muslim world, were to choose Miss World, the title would likely never leave Scandinavia. No matter how beautiful a woman with a brown, black, or even tan complexion was, she would never be quite beautiful enough, because of her skin color. This attitude informs the way many choose their wives. This is a sensitive issue, but it is one we must address if we are to advance as a community. We may think that ours is a “colorblind” community, however, there are legions of women who have been relegated to the status of unmarriageable social pariahs who would beg to differ.

God has stated that “the basis for virtue with Him is piety; not tribe, race, or national origin.” (49:13) The Prophet reminded us that “God does not look at our physical forms, or at our wealth. Rather, He looks at our hearts and our deeds.” (Muslim) We debase ourselves when we exalt what God has belittled. God and His messenger have belittled skin color and body shape and size as a designator of virtue or distinction. What does it say about us when we use these criteria as truncheons to painfully bludgeon some of the most beautiful women imaginable into social insignificance?

Marriage is not a playground where the ego thoughtlessly pursues its vanities. This is something the chivalrous young man mentioned at the outset of this essay understood. It is an institution that helps a man and a woman pursue the purpose of their creation: to glorify and worship God and to work, within the extent of our capabilities and resources, to make the world a better place for those we share it with and for those we will leave it to. This role is beautifully captured in the Qur’an, “The believing men and women are the supporting friends of each other. They enjoin right, forbid wrong, establish regular prayer, pay the poor due, and they obey God and His Messenger. They expect God’s Mercy. Surely, God is Mighty, Wise.” (9:71)

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The Household Chores And The Husband!

Posted in Advice for Husbands, Advice for Wives, Marriage Counselling on December 3, 2009 by Shaz

Question:

As salamu aalikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu!
Our beloved Prophet Muhammed (SAW) was a great leader, a great teacher, a great preacher, a Prophet, and he still had time and the mood to be a great husband. Why is it so difficult for men to be cooperative with their wives in house chores?

I’m a housewife, but I work as well at a company (temporarily at home as a freelancer). I love my husband very much, al hamdu Lillah, and generally I’m happy with our married life; however, I think it could be improved, insha-Allah.

Sometimes I can’t stop feeling that my two only functions is to clean the house (clothes, cooking, etc.) and satisfy him. Although I feel I’m right, sometimes, I also feel guilty because of that. I want to believe that a woman can be more than that! True! Because of the lack of cooperation and these feelings, I have started to become lazy with my house chores. I think it could be a lot easier for both of us if there was more cooperation, and I mean cooperation! I don’t want my husband to do all the chores, just to help sometimes. Whenever I request him, timidly, he gives “the annoyed look” and does some other chore that I didn’t ask him to do.

Answer:

Hwaa Irfan

As salamu ‘alaykum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh dear sister…

Yes, Prophet Muhammed was a great leader, teacher, preacher, and husbands who helped with the household chores too, but guess what? There is only one Prophet Muhammed (SAW). We can always compare what we have with role models and make ourselves pretty miserable. If everyone had the same experiences, and learnt in the same manner, and applied themselves in the same way to all aspects of life, it would be very dull life do you not think? Al hamdu Lillah, Allah (SWT), got it right on our behalf, and provided us with variety. As much as 20th century man has tried to make everything the same between the sexes, somehow in real terms, it just does not quite translate! The reason why it does not translate is because we as humans like to re-write the rules without considering the consequences.

What was the above all about you might be thinking sister. Well, it would seem that because you go out to work, and you work at home as well you expect your husband to do the same. However, Allah (SWT) did not design the whole creation thing in that way, and made husbands and fathers the providers as stated in the Qur’an. This does not mean that only men can go out to provide, it means that it is their responsibility to provide. For wives it is a choice Islamically speaking, albeit that there might be a decision by both husband and wife that the wife should/could go out to work.

What your husband earns is for the benefit of the family, and what you as the wife earns is at your discretion. If your income is for the benefit of the family, it is because it is a decision made by the both of you. Having no knowledge of what your husband’s occupation is, in general men do like to return to the sanctuary of home which should balance out the demands of the outside world.

Before you blow steam, yes, you too have a demanding job both at home and at work. However, do you carry over the work mind set into the home? For example, if you have people working with you and under you, do you talk to your husband in the same manner in which you talk to them. Your day may be full of a set of instructions and orders in order to keep on top of the work, but by the time you return home, that social psychology should be left at the company you work for. When you arrive home you should be the wife, the friend, the sister who your husband looks forward to being with at the end of his working day. To enable this you too have to slow down. Yes, there are many things to be done when one gets home, but if you go at it the same way you do at work, there will be no difference for you or for your husband.

Take a look at the things you do when you get home and make a list of them all, then prioritize them. The colour code them into most important, less important, and can wait. The chores that need to be done every evening (most important), look at them again, and see how you can schedule you in! Schedule you in? Yes, by doing this you will provide yourself with the opportunity to unwind, to slow down, and to relax enough to be there for yourself, and for your husband. Less important tasks can be set for 2/3 time weekly, and least important once-a-week. 

  • Take that long shower or a hot bath, put some nice smelling oils in, then put on something comfortable.

 

  • Do your prayers on time, and give thanks for what you have.

 

  • Make du’aa’ that you will always understand and appreciate each other

 

  • Prepare the kind of meal that is good for the both of you, but does not require you to be in the kitchen all throughout.

 

  • Prepare the meal based on what you have. This helps to avoid unnecessary panic for an ingredient which results in a tiresome stint to the shops.

 

  • If your husband is present and has had some time to unwind, invite him to share in the preparation of the meal with you. The time could be used to talk about light subjects, and even share laughter.

 

  • While the meal is cooking, relax and do some reading. If your husband is home, sit and talk with him – share your day, or talk about something more interesting to the both of you.

 

  • The washing does not have to be done every day.

 

  • The cleaning can be kept to a minimum, especially if the home is not cluttered with furniture and furnishings.

 

  • Anything you need you husbands help in invite him e.g. “Could you help me to…” which goes much farther than an order.

 

  • Invite your husband into the kitchen to help set the table, dish out the meal, etc., with you.

 

  • Allow for each the time for a little privacy or quiet moment.

 

  • Shop for a week instead every time you run out of something. This can be done together, take turns, or he is responsible for certain types of shopping, and you other types of shopping.

 

  • With time on your hands, you might even be able to visit a friend, a relative, or attend an event together.

 

  • Most importantly, do not do the same thing every evening, otherwise routine will get the better of your marriage.

 

  • Always ensure that there is something that you can both do together.

 

Dear sister, have a happy life!

Jazakum Allahu khayrun…

10 Tips on How to Be a Successful Husband

Posted in Advice for Husbands on November 10, 2009 by Shaz
1) Dress Up

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 Rasulullah (صلي الله عليه وسلم) would always start with Miswak when returning home and always loved the sweetest smells.

(Dress up for your wife when you are at home also. Some brothers only dress up when they go out and that is not a good practice. A husband should dress up for his wife when they are at home. it makes a wife feel special.)

2) Sweet Names

Use the cutest names for your wife. Rasulullah (صلي الله عليه وسلم) 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.

(Remember, you are your wife’s only boyfriend, and her only best friend. She does not go out seeking boyfriends and she shares a halal relationship with you. Love her unconditionally for the sake of Allah. And express your love to her. A woman likes to be told that she is loved. Call her from your work to make sure she is doing fine. I have seen my dad calling my mother several times a day, just to make sure she has been eating well. And my husband calls me at least twice from work to make sure I am doing well. These things are very important in a relationship.)

3) Reward Her Actions

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.

(Whenever there is a fight or argument, just remember all the things she does for you. she cooks for you, she takes care of your home, she takes care of your children and the most important thing is that she guards her modesty. So do not upset her if she is upset with you. Hold her and tell her that you love her. Only your love can repel her anger. Communicate with her and discuss with her if there are any misunderstandings.)

4) Remain Silent

If you see wrong from your wife, try being silent and do not comment! This is one of the ways Rasulullah (صلي الله عليه وسلم) used when he would see something inappropriate from his wives (رضالله عنهنّ). It’s a technique that few Muslim men have mastered.

(Do not criticize her all the time. Trust her and trust her decisions. If she is doing something that you don’t like, or that goes against the teachings of Islam, then do advice her gently.)

5) Smile!

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 Rasulullah (صلي الله عليه وسلم) would kiss his wife before leaving for Salah, even if he was fasting.

(Do let your wife know that you are very happy and blessed to have her. A wife always wonder how her husband feels about her. She may have some insecurity about you, so make her feel secure. Always give her a hug whenever you come back from work. appreciate her and thank her for taking care of everything whole day. If you are not too tired, go out for star gazing for an hour or so.)

6) Acknowledge Her

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 acknowledgment she receives is that there needed to be more salt in the soup. Don’t let that be; thank her!

(Write thank you notes for her and place those notes in her books, her purse, her socks, and anything else that belongs to her. You can use your own creativity to thank her. You can thank her by writing something on a mirror with her lipstick, so that she can read it when she wakes up in the morning. You can also thank her by arranging a candlelight dinner AT HOME, you be the cook and let her rest. So far I have learned that a nice romantic dinner at home is much better than going out for dinner. This way a couple saves themselves from many fitnahs. You can thank her by writing her letters and emails. Remember, in Islam, everyday is special. So celebrate wife’s day with her, and do it very often without having a particular date. She will always wonder when the wife’s day is going to be.

You can also give her a certificate of appreciation, or a Best Wife Award on wife’s day. Do everything by yourself that day and let her rest, this way you will also know how difficult it could be to do household chores. Thank her by building a webpage for her, write a note there and a poem and then ask her to visit your webpage. Thank her by recording a voice message on a cd for your wife. She will love it!

Thank her by giving her a gift, and a gift does not have to be expensive. Be creative! You do not have to give her Roses, you can give her a leaf too! (My husband gave me a leaf once, instead of roses, and I was very happy and surprised, and I appreciated his creativity). So remember, thoughtful and creative gifts makes a wife feel secure and happy. Thank her by ordering a halal pizza for her, ask the restaurant to cut it in a heart shape and have it delivered with a personalized note. Thank her by thanking her in a family gathering. A woman likes it when her husband gives her attention.

If you visit her parents or your parents, hold her hands and tell your parents how happy you are after marriage. Give your wife an Islamic book as a gift after praying Tahajjud. Use your imagination and think about unique gifts. Remember, she does not need a diamond, she needs your sincerity and your heart, so always give her the gifts that are thoughtful. Whenever you do something to make her happy, observe her facial expressions and ask yourself about how you feel when you become her happiness.)

7) Ten Blessings From Allah

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 things in your life.

(Also ask her to write down the things you did that she did not like, or the things you did that made her unhappy. Try to not do those things in future. If she falls ill, let her lay down, and read different surahs from Qur’an while placing your hand on her forehead. When I got sick, my husband recited Qur’an for me, it really helped a lot mashaAllah. Remember, a wife needs her husband the most when she is not feeling well. Take good care of her because a healthy wife makes a healthy family. Do not expect too much from her when she is sick.)

8) Validate her Feelings

Don’t belittle her desires. Comfort her. Sometimes the men may look down upon the requests of their wives. Rasulullah (صلي الله عليه وسلم) set the example for us in an incident when Safiyyah (رضالله عنها) 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.

(If there is a time of sadness, give her your shoulder to cry on. Hold her and tell her that everything will be fine. Alhamdulillah, my husband and my dad are amongst those Muslim husbands who would even have tears in their eyes if their wives are sad. Remember, a woman does not like to cry alone in a corner. She needs someone to hold her when she is sad, so never let her feel lonely. Remind her the verses from Qur’an that talks about Patience and Piety.)

9) Have Fun!

Be humorous and play games with your wife. Look at how Rasulullah (صلي الله عليه وسلم) would race his wife Aisha (رضالله عنها) in the desert. When was the last time we did something like that?

(A sense of humor plays a very important role in a marital relationship. Most women wish to have a husband who has a good sense of humor. Tell her decent and modest jokes that make her happy. A wife appreciates it very much if her husband makes her smile. You can play various games at home. Play with crayons, or have a pillow fight. Or hide different notes in your bedroom and ask her to find it. Think of different games you can both play. Let her win sometimes!

Adopt interesting hobbies, such as reading, cooking together and gardening (grow a surprise rose plant in your garden, when you have the first rose blooming, take her to the garden and show it to her. Newspaper and Sports Issue! Men like to watch sports, or read newspaper. Most Pakistani wives consider newspaper as their co-wives. So be very careful. If you are watching sports, turn the TV off if your wife comes around. Give her attention. Do not spend too much time reading newspaper, and do not read newspaper on the breakfast table, rather have an Islamic discussion. If you want to get her to like newspaper, then try to find something that interests her. Such as, try to find a news about Hijab. Or try to find a news about Muslim women for her.)

10) Be The Best

Always remember the words of Allah’s Messenger (صلي الله عليه وسلم): “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 (سبحانه وتعالى) to make your marriage successful. And Allah ta’ala knows best!

(And once again: your wife is your best friend, and your girlfriend. Share everything with her. Remember she is your garment and you are her garment, so hide her faults and mistakes. Learn to forgive her. Also communicate a lot with her family. It really makes a difference if husband communicates with his in laws. It helps both husband’s and wife’s family to share a beautiful relationship. Respect her parents and show your love to her family. This will inspire her to love and respect your family. If her family is not muslim, do dawah to them in a beautiful way.)

Spend lots of time praying to Allah swt. Do fast often even if it is not Ramadan. Fasting brings patience and taqwah. Lead her in the prayer. There is nothing better than praying together. Remember Allah, so that Allah remembers you.

May Allah bless us and guide us all. Ameen!

Note: Additions in brackets are notes from a sister.

Prepared by Muhammad Alshareef

A successful marriage: the missing link

Posted in Advice for Husbands, Advice for Wives, Tips for a Happy Marriage on September 1, 2009 by Shaz
A successful marriage: the missing link

By: Yasmin Mogahed

“And among His signs is that He created for you mates from among yourselves that you may dwell in tranquility with them, and He has put love and mercy between you; verily, in that are signs for people who reflect.” (Quran 30:21)

We’ve all read this verse on countless marriage announcements. But how many have actualized it? How many of our marriages really embody that love and mercy described by Allah? What is going wrong when so many of our marriages are ending in divorce?

According to Dr. Emerson Eggerichs, author of Love & Respect: The Love She Most Desires; The Respect He Desperately Needs, the answer is simple. In his book, Eggerichs explains that extensive research has found that a man’s primary need is for respect, while a woman’s primary need is for love. He describes what he calls the “crazy cycle”—the pattern of argumentation that results when the wife does not show respect and the husband does not show love. He explains how the two reinforce and cause one another. In other words, when a wife feels that her husband is acting unloving, she often reacts with disrespect, which in turn makes the husband act even more unloving.

Eggerichs argues that the solution to the “crazy cycle” is for the wife to show unconditional respect to her husband and for the husband to show unconditional love to his wife. This means that a wife should not say that first her husband must be loving before she will show him respect. By doing so, she will only bring about more unloving behavior. And a husband should not say that first his wife must be respectful before he will show her love. By doing so, he will only bring about more disrespectful behavior. The two must be unconditional.

When I reflected on this concept, I realized that looking at the Quran and prophetic wisdom, there are no two concepts more stressed with regards to the marital relationship.

To men, the Prophet said, “Take good care of women, for they were created from a bent rib, and the most curved part of it is its top; if you try to straighten it, you will break it, and if you leave it, it will remain arched, so take good care of women.” (Bukhari & Muslim)

He has further stressed: “The most perfect believer in the matter of faith is one who has excellent behavior; and the best among you are those who behave best towards their wives.” (Al-Tirmidhi)

Allah says: “Live with them on a footing of kindness and equity. If ye take a dislike to them it may be that ye dislike a thing, and Allah brings about through it a great deal of good.” [Qur’an: 4:19]

The prophet has also said, “A believing man should not hate a believing woman; if he dislikes one of her characteristics, he will be pleased with another.” (Muslim)

In these jewels of wisdom, men are urged to be kind and loving towards their wives. Moreover, they are urged to even overlook their wife’s faults when showing that kindness and love.

On the other hand, when addressing the wife, the focus is different. Why are women not told again and again to be kind and loving towards their husbands? Perhaps it is because unconditional love already comes naturally to women. Few men complain that their wives do not love them. But many complain that their wives do not respect them. And it is this sentiment which is most stressed in the Quran and sunnah, with regards to wives.

Respect can be manifest in a number of ways. One of the most important ways to show respect is the respect of one’s wishes. When someone says, “I respect your advice”, they mean “I will follow your advice”. Respecting a leader, means doing what they say. Respecting our parents means not going against their wishes. And respecting one’s husband means respecting his wishes. The Prophet has said: “When any woman prays her five, fasts her month, guards her body and obeys her husband, it is said to her: Enter paradise from whichever of its doors you wish.” [At-Tirmidhi]

Why are we as women told to respect and follow the wishes of our husbands? It is because men are given an extra degree of responsibility. Allah says: “Men are the protectors and maintainers [qawwamun] of women, because Allah has given the one more [strength] than the other, and because they support them from their means . . .” (Qur’an 4:34)

But won’t this unconditional respect towards one’s husband put us, as women, in a weak, submissive position? Won’t we set ourselves up to be taken advantage of and abused? Quite the contrary. The Quran, the prophetic example, and even contemporary research have proven the exact opposite. The more respect a woman shows her husband, the more love and kindness he will show her. And in fact, the more disrespect she shows, the more harsh and unloving he becomes.

Similarly, a man may question why he should show kindness and love towards even a disrespectful wife. To answer this question, one only needs to look at the example of Omar Ibn ul-Khattab. When a man came to Omar (who was Khalifah at the time) to complain of his wife, he heard Omar’s own wife yelling at him. While the man turned to leave, Omar called him back. The man told Omar that he had come to complain of the same problem that Omar himself had. To this Omar replied that his wife tolerated him, washed his clothes, cleaned his home, made him comfortable, and took care of his children. If she did all of this for him, how could he not tolerate her when she raised her voice?

This story provides a beautiful example for all of us—not only for the men. This story is a priceless illustration of tolerance and patience, which is essential for any successful marriage. Moreover, consider the reward in the hereafter for those who show patience: Allah says, “Only those who are patient shall receive their reward in full without reckoning (or measure).” (Qur’an 39:10)

How To Be An Outstanding Husband & Wife

Posted in Advice for Husbands, Advice for Wives, Audio on September 12, 2008 by Shaz

 

 

Husband
Sheikh Muhammad AlShareef shares with his listeners many pearls of wisdom in this lecture. The target audience is, of course, Muslim brothers. But this lecture is incredibly beneficial for sisters as well. There is a great deal of insight that both husbands and wives can benefit from. It is comprised of a series of techniques that the Sheikh offers to husbands (and future husbands) on how to please one’s wife and insha’Allah become an ideal husband. The techniques offered are all-encompassing, and the main source of evidence for these techniques is the seerah of Rasoolallah (s). Many touching and heart-warming ahadith are mentioned about the Prophet’s (s) interactions with his wives, with many priceless lessons to be learned from these.

Wife
Most Muslims have heard numerous lectures on women’s rights in Islam. In particular, the woman’s rights and obligations as a wife are discussed a great deal amongst Western audiences. As important as this topic may be, it is refreshing to hear someone discuss the role of the Muslim wife in a new light. Rather than simply focusing on the Shari’ah and controversial women’s issues, Sheikh Muhammad shares some excellent techniques on how the wife can please her husband as well as please Allah in this lecture. He offers Muslim women a series of techniques on how to win the heart of her husband, as well as uphold her responsibilities as a Muslim wife. Incorporated into this lecture are many examples from the lives of the Sahaabiyaat and other notable women. Interestingly enough, some examples from books written by non-Muslim authors, such as Laura Dole’s work, “The Surrendered Wife” are also used.

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The Wife Is A Delicate Crystal

Posted in Advice for Husbands, Marriage Coaching on February 20, 2008 by Shaz

The Delicate Care Of A Precious WifeAnas Narrated, “The Messenger Of Allah was once traveling and a black boy called Anjashah was chanting for camels. The Messenger of Allah said, “O Anjashah, slowly, drive the camels slowly, as they are carrying Qawaareer (crystal).” (saheeh of muslim)

Crystal has exquisite beauty that glimmers in the light with each crystal having a unique design and pattern. Precision and care are taken with each small feature of fine crystal – down to the etching and intricate detail within it’s appearance. It is also fragile and delicate requiring utmost care, lest it should slip and break with its beauty and substance lost and gone. It is also valuable and makes for a precious gift, being admired, adorned, kept safe and gently handled.

Prophet Muhammad metaphorically used the term crystal to describe the believing women, asking Anjashah to drive the camels slowly for the camels were carrying these delicate precious women who could easily get hurt and injured. Our Prophet used this term to highlight their quality, characteristics and importance, as he gave them due consideration through an expression of kindness and love.Men are Qawwaamoon over women (Qur’aan 4:34)

Allah described the men as Qawwaamoon over their women, with the word Qawwaamoon highlighting how the Husband stands responsible over his Wife, offering her protection and maintenance whilst fulfilling her needs and upholding her care. This point is well known to the Muslims and has been rightfully emphasized repeatedly throughout the period of Islam. The husband is the one who guards, protects, maintains and cares for his wife. Yet something must accompany this reality, and that is the nature and essence of the wife who is delicate and precious and a companion requiring the utmost care and love. Yes the husband is from amongst the Qawwaamoon just like the wife is from amongst the Qawaareer. One for the other, with the qualities of the husband complimenting the qualities of the wife, as they combine and unite as one.

Allah gave everything its due share and gifted each object in creation with its unique gift as a bestowal and favour from Him. He gave men physical strength just like He gave women their gift of sensitivity and softness. The Prophet would teach the people about these differences, instructing the Husband and Wife to interact with each other accordingly. It is not befitting that the woman opposes her Husband in goodness and undermines his position of responsibility, just like it is not befitting for the Husband to neglect his Wife or handle her with inpatience and harshness. The wife is for the Husband and the Husband is for the wife, serving each other in unison as they live their lives worshipping Allah , helping each other along the way.

When we return to the Sunna of our Prophet and study his statements carefully we begin to understand the proper essence of things, for he would choose the most appropriate words for describing that which he would describe. Of all the things that break he could have chosen anything but he chose to describe the believing women as Qawaareer, highlighted many qualities including their being delicate, fragile, beautiful and precious.

The Delicate Gift of A Wife

Abu Hurairah narrated that Allah’s Messenger said, ‘ A Woman is like a rib. When you attempt to straighten it, you would break it. And if you leave her alone you would benefit by her, and crookedness will remain in her.’ (saheeh of muslim)

The delicate nature of the wife has been reinforced by the above Hadeeth for the crooked rib can easily snap and break, just like a delicate piece of crystal can shattter and break. It is part of the responsibility of the husband to handle his wife with the utmost care and gentleness, steering clear of carelessness, crude behaviour, harshness and recklessness. If he behaves as such, he has abused his role of being amongst the Qawwaamoon and neglected the care of the Qawaareer.

The Beautiful Gift of A Wife

Abu Hurairah narrated that the Prophet asked a man who had married a woman, ‘have you looked at her?’ He said, no.’ The Prophet said, ‘Go and look at her.’ (saheeh of muslim)

The beauty of the wife is an important aspect which attracts the husband when he meets her, sees her and marrys her. Our Prophet taught his Ummah to pay attention to beauty in the sense that the man and woman should be physically attracted to one another. We must understand the interpretation of beauty is individual to each person. The man and woman should marry for the sake of religion, but they should also be atracted to one another, and this is why our Prophet gave the command to look.

The Precious Gift of A Wife

Abdullah bin Amr narrated that the Prophet said, ‘The whole world is a provision, and the best provision of the world is the pious woman.’ (saheeh of muslim3465)

The precious companionship of a righteous wife is a gift like no other. When the wife strives in righteousness, Allah raises her status and rank. She becomes filled with goodness and a means for goodness for her husband. So her husband, upon recognizing this, should pay attention to what he has been given. He should be careful in how he treats her and views her, for she is worthy, precious and an invaluable companion like no other.

Blessed is He Who sent His slave Muhammad to convey His message and restore the Mezaan on Earth, with everything in the universe being intricately balanced as one part of creation assists, effects, and compliments another. Similar is the case with a believing husband and a believing wife, who compliment each other as they unite together as one. We should be careful in how we treat each other and how we view each other for the husband-wife relationship is an imporant part of Islam. We should acquire our understanding through the Qur’aan and Sunna, staying away from cultural influences ad practices which have made their way into the various Muslim lands. It is true that women have caused great fitnah, including the fitan caused by the unrighteous wife, but the problem is not confined to women. Some cultures advocate harshness on the part of the men, while other cultures pay little attention to the feelings of a woman when her heart can be easily broken and shattered. Many Muslim men have married righteous believing women yet they nelgect them and do not realise their worth. Yet this is the delicate gift of a precious wife we are talking about. If we truly claim to be servants of Allah and followers of Muhammad then let us follow the verses of the Qur’aan and understand the Sunna. Next time we study the verse of Qawwaamoon, let us also reflect on the Hadeeth of Qawaareer.

Men are Qawwaamoon over women (Qur’aan 4:34)

Anas Narrated, ‘The Messenger of Allah said, O Anjashah, slowly, drive the camels slowly, as they are carrying Qawaareer (crystal).’ (saheeh of muslim)

Written by Kamillah Khan

An Uncommunicative Husband

Posted in Advice for Husbands, Advice for Wives, Marriage Counselling on February 18, 2008 by Shaz

 Hwaa Irfan

Writer, counselor, editor – Egypt

In a question received through our Cyber Counseling service, a sister was at the end of her tether with a husband who was far from being communicative. there was an alignment of forces against her from his parents’ side. Her in-laws blame her for everything that has gone wrong, and her husband is singing the same tune.

Establishing the paths of communication between spouses in the early years of marriage can be like an obstacle course: With each effort, one loses the ability to be open to the other, especially today whereby the political climate has increased a global insecurity that is seeping into everyday lives.

Those insecurities can be based on class, race, gender, and personal ideologies; so, instead of becoming open to each other, in general, we are increasingly becoming closed off from one another, less trusting, and less considerate.
When families get involved in spreading misunderstanding, a whole vicious circle begins. In such situations, no one is innocent and everyone is a “partner-in-crime” to perpetuating the vicious circle, whether it be an observer, someone who “sits on the fence” – making but not acting on a decision – or someone who is actively being involved by spreading or repeating that which does not reflect the truth.

This kind of insecurity reflects`asabiyyah at its lowest form. On a family level, partisanship results in a clannish mentality, whereby the interests of the family or certain members are considered more important than the common good.

This is antithetical to Islam, which moves the individual from nurturance between mother and father, invested in which are the seeds that help one reach out and fulfill one’s potential and be of benefit to the greater community, that is, the society at large. The essence of Islam is tawheed(Oneness of Allah), and from that tawheedcomes the middle way, which Islam generally reflects.

Allah tells us:

[And among His signs is the creation of the heavens and the earth and the diversity of your tongues and colors; most surely there are signs in this for the learned.](Ar-Rum 30:22)

[O humankind, surely We have created you of a male and a female and made you tribes and families that you may know each other; surely the most honorable of you with Allah is the one among you most careful (of his or her duty); surely Allah is Knowing, Aware. } (Al-Hujurat 49:13)

When we behave antithetically to the principles of tawheed on a personal level, we effectively close all paths to learning. We lose the kind of learning that helps us reevaluate what we think is correct. When we stop learning, then we also become blocked to learning from one another. We put labels upon one another and condemn each other to that label, which prevents growth, change, and rejuvenation. The way we do this is reflected in the following Qur’anic verse:

{O you who believe, let not (one) people laugh at (another) people, perchance they may be better than they are, nor let women (laugh) at (other) women, perchance they may be better than they are; and do not defame one another or insult one another by nicknames; bad is the name of lewdness after faith, and those who do not turn in repentanceare (indeed) evildoers.} (Al-Hujurat 49:11)

In other words, we create myths about “the other,”which we act upon in order to cover up our ability to be open and balanced on the path of the middle way. The middle way is the point between two poles, which we are reminded of in many Prophetic hadiths and Qur’anic verses. Even in spousal relations, that middle way is emphasized as follows:

{And if you fear a breach between the two, then appoint a judge from his people and a judge from her people; if they both desire agreement, Allah will effect harmony between them; surely Allah is Knowing, Aware.} (An-Nisaa’ 4:35)

This is why our book of guidance – the Qur’an – is sometimes referred to as the balancer, or al-mizan.
balancer. or al-mizan

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The focus should be between the husband and the wife, and that focus should be a striving for balance, but this means taking the path of the middle way. When one stops striving for the better, a negative pattern develops, which results in ending up blaming “the other” instead of first looking at one’s self.

A husband “switches off” to what the wife is saying because:

• He is not interested.

• He has no idea about what his wife is saying.

• He has a particular understanding of his role as a husband.

• He has a tendency toward male chauvinism.

• He is tired because of work.

• He is not used to communicating with women.

A wife should try to observe the following over a period of time :

• What interests her husband

• When he is more conversational

• What makes him laugh

• What makes him sad

A little risk taking is involved beside a willingness to dissolve personal myths and to develop the kind of communication that nurtures enough compassion. The key to mutual understanding will help build the right kind of relationship that is suitable to one’s marriage.

A wife should try as much as possible to pray with her husband, especially Fajr (Dawn) Prayer, the prayer that sets the day ahead.

A wife should also try to observe the following about her husband:

What he likes and dislikes
What brings out the worst in him
What brings out the best in him
A wife cannot have any direct control over her husband’s family, but she can influence her husband, who in turn will influence his family. Make regular du`aa’to help provide your relationship with strength and guidance and enough patience and compassion to allow the efforts to bear fruit.

 

And remember the following opposites that affect many relationships:

(+) Love (-) Fear
Empathy Refusal to understand
Trust Lies; deceit
Certainty Denial
Confidence Harmful actions
Understanding Blocked communication