Marriage in Islam

In Islam, marriage (Arabic: نِكَاح‎, romanized: Nikāḥ) is a legal contract between a man and a woman. Both the groom and the bride are to consent to the marriage of their own free wills. A formal, binding contract - verbal or on paper - is considered integral to a religiously valid Islamic marriage, and outlines the rights and responsibilities of the groom and bride. There must be two Muslim witnesses of the marriage contract. Divorce in Islam can take a variety of forms, some executed by a husband personally and some executed by a religious court on behalf of a plaintiff wife who is successful in her legal divorce petition for valid cause.

QuotesEdit

  • “Those among you who can support a wife should marry, for it restrains eyes from casting evil glances and preserves one from immorality” (3231).
    • Sahih Muslim. Quoted from Ram Swarup, Understanding Islam through Hadis, 1983. [1]
  • A man should marry four wives: A Persian to have some one to talk to; a Khurasani woman for his housework; a Hindu for nursing his children; a woman from Mawaraun nahr, or Transoxiana, to have some one to whip as a warning to the other three.
    • Ain-i-Akbari by Abul Fazl, trans. by H. Blochmann. I, 327. Quoted from Lal, K. S. (1994). Muslim slave system in medieval India. New Delhi: Aditya Prakashan. Chapter 7. Also cited in Herklot, Islam in India, 85-86.
  • Marry women who will love their hus­bands and be very prolific, for I want you to be more numerous than any other people.
    • Quoted from T.P. Hughes: Dictionary of Islam, p.314, who refers to book 13 of Mishkatu'l Masa­bih ("nic­hes for lamps [of the tradition]", a compilation of Sunni tradit­ions by the 12th-century Imam Husain al-Baghaw­i, expanded in the 14th century by Shaykh Waliuddin). Quoted from Elst, Koenraad. (1997) The Demographic Siege
  • "The best wedding is that upon which the least trouble and expense is bestowed."
    • sayings of Muhammad on the subject of marriage, quoted from T.P. Hughes: Dictionary of Islam.
  • "The worst of feasts are marriage feasts, to which the rich are invited and the poor left out, and he who abandons the acceptation of an invitation, then verily disobeys God and His Prophet."
    • sayings of Muhammad on the subject of marriage, quoted from T.P. Hughes: Dictionary of Islam.
  • "When anyone demands your daughter in marriage, and you are pleased with his disposition and his faith, then give her to him; for if you do not so, then there will be strife and contention in the world."
    • sayings of Muhammad on the subject of marriage, quoted from T.P. Hughes: Dictionary of Islam.
  • "A woman may be married either for her money, her reputation, her beauty, or her religion; then look out for a religious woman, for if you do marry other than a religious women, may your hands be rubbed with dirt"
    • sayings of Muhammad on the subject of marriage, quoted from T.P. Hughes: Dictionary of Islam.
  • "All young men who have arrived at the ago of puberty should marry, for marriage prevents sins. He who cannot marry should fast."
    • sayings of Muhammad on the subject of marriage, quoted from T.P. Hughes: Dictionary of Islam.
  • "When a Muslim marries he perfects half his religion, and he should practice abstinence for the remaining half."
    • sayings of Muhammad on the subject of marriage, quoted from T.P. Hughes: Dictionary of Islam.
  • "Beware! make not large settlements upon women; because, if great settlements were a cause of greatness in the world and of righteousness before God, surely it would be most proper for the Prophet of God to make them."
    • Sayings of Muhammad on the subject of marriage, quoted from T.P. Hughes: Dictionary of Islam.
  • "When any of you wishes to demand a woman in marriage, if he can arrange it, let him see her first."
    • Sayings of Muhammad on the subject of marriage, quoted from T.P. Hughes: Dictionary of Islam.
  • "A woman ripe in years shall have her consent asked in marriage, and if she remain silent her silence is her consent, and if she refuse she shall not be married by force." ... "A widow shall not be married until she be consulted, nor shall a virgin be married until her consent be asked." The Companions said," in what manner is the permission of virgin?" He replied, "Her consent is by her silence."
    • Sayings of Muhammad on the subject of marriage, quoted from T.P. Hughes: Dictionary of Islam.
  • "If a woman marries without the consent of her guardian, her marriage is null and void...; then, if her marriage hath been consummated, the woman shall take her dower; if her guardians dispute about her marriage, then the king is her guardian."
    • Sayings of Muhammad on the subject of marriage, quoted from T.P. Hughes: Dictionary of Islam.
  • There is the Islamic view of marriage. Apologists of Islam, ever so anxious to show how progressive and avant-garde and modern their religion has always been, never tire of saying: In Islam marriage is not a sacrament, it is just a contract. Woman, as we shall see when we turn to the Quran and the Hadis, is just an ‘affliction’ that man has to suffer; she is just a field that he may irrigate or not irrigate as it pleases him; at best she is one of the things that Allah has created for him to enjoy; when on top of all this marriage is but a contract specifying the terms on which he may enjoy the thing—the mehr, as Ram Swarup reminds us being literally the ‘wages’ or ‘hire’ for using the woman—the ulema naturally visit all the consequences on the woman. The husband has but to enjoy the woman, and when he tires of her can just cast her off paying her the nominal maintenance, and the mehr which had been agreed to in the contract. And Allah, in His mercy, has not put these latter at anyonerous level. The minimum mutah, the consolatory gift, we learn, is one pair of clothes and the maximum is one slave or slave girl. The maintenance is to be board and lodging for just three months. And while it is fashionable nowadays to fix the mehr at poetically grandiloquent levels, it is just as fixed a practice to have the wife agree to forego it on the nuptial night itself.
    • Arun Shourie - The World of Fatwas Or The Sharia in Action (2012, Harper Collins)
  • "That is the moat perfect Muslim whose disposition is the best, and the best of you is he who behaves best to his wives."
    • Muhammad's teaching on wives, as given in the Traditions. Quoted from T.P. Hughes: Dictionary of Islam.
  • "When a man has two wives and does not treat them equally, he will come on the Day of Resurrection with half his body fallen off."
    • Muhammad's teaching on wives, as given in the Traditions. Quoted from T.P. Hughes: Dictionary of Islam.
  • "When a man calls his wife, she must come, although she be at an oven."
    • Muhammad's teaching on wives, as given in the Traditions. Quoted from T.P. Hughes: Dictionary of Islam.
  • "The Prophet used to divide his time equally amongst his wives, and he would say, 'O God, I divide impartially that which thou hast put in my power.'"
    • Muhammad's teaching on wives, as given in the Traditions. Quoted from T.P. Hughes: Dictionary of Islam.
  • Admonish your wives with kindness, because woman were created from a crooked bone of the side; therefore, if you wish to straighten it, you will break it, and if you let it alone, it will always be crooked."
    • Muhammad's teaching on wives, as given in the Traditions. Quoted from T.P. Hughes: Dictionary of Islam.
  • "Not one of you must whip his wife like whipping a slave."
    • Muhammad's teaching on wives, as given in the Traditions. Quoted from T.P. Hughes: Dictionary of Islam.
  • "A Muslim must not hate his wife, for if he be displeased with one bad quality in her, thou let him he pleased with another that is good."
    • Muhammad's teaching on wives, as given in the Traditions. Quoted from T.P. Hughes: Dictionary of Islam.
  • "A Muslim cannot obtain anything better than an amiable and beautiful wife, such a wife who, when ordered by her husband to do a thing, will obey, and if her husband looks at her will be happy; and if her husband swears by her, she will make him a swearer of truth; and if ha be absent from her, she will honour him with her own person and property."
    • Muhammad's teaching on wives, as given in the Traditions. Quoted from T.P. Hughes: Dictionary of Islam.
  • It is related that on one occasion the Prophet said': "Beat not your wives." Then Umar came to the Prophet and said, "Our wives have got. the upper hand of the their husbands from hearing this." Then the Prophet permitted beating of wives. Then an immense number of women collected round the Prophet's family, and complained of their husbands beating them. And the Prophet said," Verily a great number of women are assembled in my home complaining of their husbands, and those men who beat their wives do not behave well. He is not of my way who teach a woman to go astray and who entices a slave from his master.
    • Muhammad's teaching on wives, as given in the Traditions. Quoted from T.P. Hughes: Dictionary of Islam.
  • The Quran (2.241) explicitly says, ‘Those of you who die leaving surviving widows shall bequeath to their widows provisions for a year without (their) being turned out.’ In direct contravention to this the compendium of Islamic law, the Hidayah, states, ‘Maintenance is not due to a woman after her husband’s decease...’ The Imamia goes even further to say, ‘A widow has no right to maintenance even though she be pregnant.’
    • Arun Shourie - The World of Fatwas Or The Sharia in Action (2012, Harper Collins)

QuranEdit

  • Regarding the treatment. of wives, the following verse in the Qur'an (Surah iv. 38) allows the husband absolute power to correct them: "Chide those whose refractoriness you have cause to fear. Remove them into sleeping chambers apart, and beat them. But if they are obedient to you, then seek not occasion against them."
    • quoted from T.P. Hughes: Dictionary of Islam.
  • Men are in charge of women, because Allah hath made the one of them to excel the other, and because they spend of their property (for the support of women).
    • Quran (IV. 34)

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