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MATRIMONIAL LIFE: GENERAL CONCEPTS

MATRIMONIAL LIFE: GENERAL CONCEPTS

Islam has laid down general concepts and rules to be followed, so that people will live in peace and harmony. Islam has also laid down specific injunctions to be followed. As for the family, the following are some of the major concepts and specific areas that Islam has instructed mankind to follow.

1. The family is the cornerstone and the foundation of a social, cultural and religious structure in the society.

2. God created people from a single soul, men and women in large numbers. Therefore, we should fear, respect, and appreciate Allah for His creation.

3. From among His signs are mates (spouses), who have been created, so that they may dwell in tranquility. To fulfill this objective, He has made compassion, love, sympathy, concern, and mercy between the two spouses.

4. Allah has made all of the above so that people may think, ponder, contemplate and reflect.

5. There is no sexual relationship before marriage, just as there is no extra-marital relationship (outside of marriage).

6. The marriage life is a matter of worship, just like those of praying, fasting and other religious acts. Hence, it is considered to be a fulfillment of the faith for the individuals.

7. Marriage is not only for the newly wed couple, but their extended families have to be included. This means that the relatives of each spouse become blood relatives to both.

8. Love between a couple starts after marriage. If love starts before marriage, it will definitely stop after marriage.

9. During the process of courtship (Khitbah), and before performing the marriage ceremony (Nikah), the two individuals are to know one another. However, there should be no privacy between them. The members of the two families are to be included also.

10. For an official marriage to take place, a written officiation has to be performed, and there should be two witnesses, preferably from their blood relatives.

11. The concept of “Mahr” or dowry is to be offered by the groom to the bride. It is a token commitment of the groom to the bride that he is to be responsible for the family.

12. For marriage, one should look for the girl who is compassionate, pious, tender and bashful.

13. After the marriage ceremony takes place, or after the marriage has been consummated, it is recommended that a “Waleemah” is to be offered. It is a matter of a dinner where relatives and friends are invited.

14. It is recommended that Khitbah (courtship) and Nikah (marriage) ceremonies and the Waleemah are to be publicized. The marriage union of a couple is not.

15. Marriage is for worldly and Heavenly benefits, both at the same time.

16. Marriage helps a person to live a stable life; morally, socially, culturally, spiritually, economically, biologically, etc.

 WOMAN IN ISLAM

1. Woman is a full and equal partner of man in procreation of mankind.

2. She is equal to man in bearing personal and common responsibilities, and in receiving rewards for her deeds.

3. She is equal to man in pursuit of education and knowledge.

4. She is entitled to freedom of expression as much as man is.

5. Women participated in public life with early Muslims.

6. Islam grants woman equal rights to contracts, enterprise, and to earn and possess independently.

7. Islam safeguarded these rights and put them in practice as integral articles of faith.

8. Her inheritance and her earnings are hers; while her husband’s inheritance and earnings are for the whole family.

9. She enjoys more privileges than man:

(a) She is exempt from prayers/fasting in her regular periods and at times of confinement.

(b) She is also exempt from attending the obligatory congregation of Friday prayers.

(c) She is exempt from all financial liabilities.

(d) As a mother, she enjoys more recognition and higher honor in the sight of Allah (31:14-15); (16:15) and in the sight of the Prophet.

10. Her rights and duties are complementary to man but not necessarily identical.

11. In Qur’an there is a chapter about “women” but there is no chapter about “men.”

12. In Qur’an there is a chapter in the name of a woman in her personal name, namely, Mariam (Mary) but there is no chapter in the name of a particular person other than names of the prophets.

13. There are certain situations where women are to perform a duty and to assume the responsibility where men cannot do it. Such situations are: The ablution of a deceased woman, leading prayer for women’s gathering only, etc.

14. Man was not created for woman and woman was not created for man. However, both were created for one another to complement each other. The Qur’an states that:

Women are raiment for men and men are raiment for women. (2:187)

15. Islam refuted and removed what other religious teachings had placed on woman.

(a) Islam removed the stigma of wickedness and impurity on woman.

(b) Islam refuted the assertion that woman was first deceived by Satan, and therefore she was responsible for the fall of Adam from Paradise. Islam says that Satan caused both of them to deflect.

(c) Islam denounced the idea that woman is an organ of devil. Islam, on the other hand, says that woman is a fortress (Muhsanah) for man against Satan.

(d) While others condemned Eve who brought eternal Hell, Islam says that she opened the door of Paradise.

(e) Islam assured again that Allah gave men wives of their own kind.

16. Islam has assured that virtuous women are for virtuous men and the reverse is true. (24:26)

17. Matrimonial life is a life of worship. The relationship of husband and wife is a matter of rewards and blessings.

ISLAM ON SEX

Islam is a total and a complete way of life; therefore, sex education is part of the Islamic teachings. The Qur’an cites numerous injunctions related to matrimonial life, and Prophet Muhammad had explained these teachings in a noble way. Allah says in Surah Al-Nisa (The Women) the following:

O people, keep your duty to your Lord, who created you from a single being and creates its mate of the same (kind), and spread from these two many men and women. And keep your duty to Allah, by whom you demand one of another (your rights), and (to) the ties of relationship. Surely Allah is ever a Watcher over you. (4:1)

However, in Surah Al-Room (The Romans) the Qur’an states the following about the creation of mankind:

And among His signs in this, that He created for you mates from among yourselves, that you may dwell in tranquillity with them, and He has put love and mercy between your (hearts): verily in that are signs for those who reflect. (30:21)

Again the Qur’an stresses the idea that people should get married. In Surah Al-Noor (The Light) Allah says the following:

Marry off any single persons among you, as well as your honorable servants and maids. If they are poor, Allah will enrich them from his bounty. Allah is boundless, Aware. (24:32)

This type of teaching does give confidence to people and trust in the Creator who is the Provider for all. One should not be looking for wealth, position or status, but he should put his trust in Allah. In one Hadith, the Prophet (P) assured people the financial help of Allah if they wish to get married and to live a pure and clean life. The Hadith goes as follows:

Three (groups of people) Allah obliged Himself to help them: Mujahid in the Cause of Allah, a worker to pay his debts, and the one who wants to marry to live a chase life. (Tarmizi)

Islam does encourage people to get married as soon as they are ready to assume the responsibility of the matrimonial life. The Prophet (P) said: Narrated by Ibn Massood (R) that the Prophet (P) said:

O young people! Whoever can assume the responsibility let him get married as it helps him cast down his gaze and protects his private organs; and whoever cannot, he should fast as it is a protection for him.

Islam is against ascetic life. People are to live and enjoy their worldly and spiritual life at one time. The Prophet (P) said: Narrated by Sa’ad Ibn Abi Waqqas that the Messenger of Allah said:

Indeed Allah has replaced for us the ascetic life with the pure and magnanimous law. (Tabarani)

At the same time, Islam condemns anyone who involves himself in sex outside matrimonial life, whether before marriage or after marriage. Adultery and fornication are a big sin; and the person, if caught, is to be penalized accordingly.

Islam also condemns those who claim they are living by a “common law” system. Islamic teachings stipulate that a believing and a faithful person will attain blessings for a maximum of fifty percent in his life, outside the married life. The other fifty percent of blessings and rewards will be earned through marriage. This means that marriage is a blessing from Allah to mankind if both parties are using it in the appropriate way, method, and frequency.

To enjoy matrimonial life, a believing person will receive rewards and blessings from the Creator. This means that Allah will give the husband and wife rewards while they are fulfilling their biological needs and desires. There are, of course, rules and regulations, as to how, how often, where and when to enjoy their matrimonial life. Hence, matrimonial life is not a sin, but a blessing. It is considered a matter of worship like prayer, fasting, pilgrimage, charity and other good things a person does for himself and for mankind.

If spouses follow the rules and regulations of matrimonial life which are stipulated in the Qur’an and Hadith, they will not have any diseases such as AIDS, and venereal diseases. They will continue to enjoy life with “safe sex”, and at the same time, they are to be rewarded for it in this life and in the hereafter.

It is mentioned in the Qur’an that matrimonial life is not to end at death time. In Surah Al-Dukhan (Smoke) Allah (swt) says:

So and we shall wed them to maidens with beautiful, big and lustrous eyes. (44:54)

In the hereafter, there will be a permanent life in Paradise, and both husband and wife shall enjoy their matrimonial lives. In Surah Yasin, Allah says the following:

Verily the companions of the garden shall that day have joy in all that they do. They and their associates will be in pleasant shade, reclining on raised couches. Every fruit will be there for them. (36:55-57)

This type of life in Paradise is full of happiness without having any problems. Women will not have their monthly periods, and there will not be any defecation, or urination. Moreover, there will not be any venereal diseases. It will be a life of enjoyment, a life of entertainment, a life of happiness, and a life of eternal peace.

While the life in Paradise is full of enjoyment, one has to enjoy this life too. Matrimonial life on this earth should be a life of blessings, rewards, enjoyment, and happiness. In a Hadith about the matrimonial life as a life of entertainment, the Prophet said: Narrated by Abdallah Ibn A’mr Ibn Al-A’ass (R) that the Prophet (P) said:

This world is a life of entertainment; and the best entertainment is a virtuous woman. (Muslim)

SEX DETERMINATION: SCIENTIFIC BACKGROUND

This is a special terminology used in biology, sexology, embryology and fertilization. It refers to the idea of determining the type of gender to be formed after fertilization takes place between the sperm and the ova.

Sex is a phenotypic character determined by inherited chromosomes. In humans, each somatic cell (any cell other than a sperm or egg cell) has 46 chromosomes. Under a microscope, chromosomes can be distinguished from one another by their appearance. They differ in size, position of the Centro mere, and staining pattern.

On careful examination, the chromosomes can be matched in pairs, i.e., there are two of each type. The two chromosomes of each pair carry genes controlling the same inherited traits.

Human females have a homologous pair of X chromosomes, but males have one X and one Y chromosome, the shortest human chromosome. Because of their role in determining the sex of a person, the X and Y chromosomes are called sex chromosomes. The other chromosomes are called autisms.

The sperm and egg are distinct from somatic cells in their chromosome count. Each of these reproductive cells, or gametes, has a single set of twenty-two autosomes, plus a single sex chromosome, either X or Y. A cell with a single chromosome set is called a Haploid cell. In humans, the haploid number (N) is twenty-three. Sexual intercourse allows a haploid sperm cell from the father to reach and fuse with an egg cell of the mother in the process of fertilisation. The resulting fertilised egg (zygote) contains the two haploid sets of chromosomes bearing genes representing the maternal and paternal family lines. Both of these twenty-three chromosome pairs make up the full complement of the chromosome characteristic of a Diploid cell.

Therefore, the life cycle of sexually reproducing organisms follow a basic pattern of alternation between the diploid and the haploid conditions. Hence the processes of meiosis and fertilization are the unique trademarks of sexual reproduction.

PROCESS OF SEX DETERMINATION

Many species including mammals and humans have the XY mechanism that determines the type of gender at the time of fertilisation. As a result of the process of meiosis, each haploid gamete contains one sex chromosome along with its haploid set of autosomes. Half of the sperm cells have X and half contain Y chromosome. The eggs all carry X chromosome, while the sperm cells contain either the X or the Y chromosome.

The sex of the individuals is therefore determined by the type of sperm cells, the X-bearing or the Y-bearing chromosome that fertilises the egg cell. If we consider random fertilisation is to take place, the results would be 1:1 sex ratio. This means that there would be approximately equal number of males and females.

QUR’AN ON SEX DETERMINATION

The Qur’an has surpassed all types of scientific investigations and researchers in explaining the concept of sex determination. Fourteen hundred years ago, the Qur’an informed mankind that the type of gender of the new foetus is determined by the sperm, and not by the egg. The Qur’an affirms that both male and female genders are determined by the sperm cells. Such type of information is mentioned twice in the Qur’an. In Surah Al-Najm (The Star) Allah says the following:

And that it is He Who creates the two kinds–the male and the female–out of a (mere) drop of sperm as it is poured forth. (53:45-46)

Moreover, the Qur’an reaffirms the determination of the type of gender during the process of fertilisation is through the sperm cells. In Surah Al-Qiyamah (The Resurrection) Allah says the following:

Does man, then, think that he is to be left to himself to go about at will? Was he not once a (mere) drop of sperm that had been split, and thereafter became a germ-cell, whereupon He created and formed (it) in accordance with what (it) was meant to be, and fashioned out of it the two sexes, the male and the female? Is it not He, then, able to bring the dead back to life? (75:36-40)

It should be stated here that the determination of gender does not take place haphazard or coincident. It is being decided by the Creator. The decision as to who should get a baby daughter or son is in the hands of Allah. He decides with wisdom, knowledge and mercy. He knows exactly which sperm cell should fertilise the ova in order to get the newly formed baby. There are two billion sperm cells in one ejaculation. Each one tries to fuse itself with the only egg cell so that fertilisation will take place, and the newly formed zygote is produced. It is, therefore, the decision of Allah to allow one and only one sperm cell that He chooses to fertilise the egg cell. In Surah Al-Shura (Consultation) Allah says the following:

To Allah belongs the dominion of the heavens and the earth. He creates what He wills (and plans). He bestows (children) male or female according to His will (and plan), or He bestows both males and females, and He leaves barren whom He wills; for He is full of knowledge and power. (42:49-50)

When Allah decides who should get what, He knows perfectly what is going on in the wombs of the mothers. Since it is He who decides what to take place, it is also He who knows what is going on. It is also He who takes care of the foetus in the wombs of their mothers. Finally, it is He who creates, nourishes, and provides; and it is He who makes us to live and to die. In Surah Al-Ra’ad (The Thunder) Allah says:

Allah does know what every female (womb) does bear, by how much the wombs fall short (of their time or number) or do exceed. Every single thing is before His sight, in (due) proportion. He knows the Unseen and that which is Open: He is the Great, the Most High. (13:8-9)

Finally, one should conclude this section by saying that Allah knows everything in the whole universe. After all, one of His beautiful names is that He is The Knowledgeable. Allah says in Surah Al-Fatir (The Originator of Creation) the following:

And Allah did create you from dust; than from a sperm drop; then He made you in pairs. And no female conceives, or lays down (her load), but with His knowledge. Nor is a man long-lived granted length of days, nor is a part cut off from his life, but is in a decree (ordained). All this is easy for Allah. (35:11)

WISDOM OF ITS MECHANISM

No one can determine as to the wisdom of the process of sex determination. Why such type of a mechanism should be determined through the sperm cells instead of the egg cells? One may say that it has to be this way or the other. It could also be through a different process altogether. The wisdom is left up to the Creator, Allah. He knows exactly what to create and how to create. Allah says in Surah Al-Qamar (The Moon) the following:

Verily, all things have We created in proportion and measure. And Our command is but a single (Act) like the twinkling of an eye. (54:49-50)

While the wisdom is not known, some indirect reflections might be depicted from the Qur’an. In many places in the Qur’an, men blamed their wives for bringing them daughters instead of boys. This means that if men want boys instead of girls, they should supply their wives with the Y-chromosomes instead of the X-chromosomes. Moreover, if men want to blame their wives for bringing daughters, men should blame themselves instead. They are the sources of supplying the Y -chromosomes. Therefore, men should put their trust in Allah, the Wise, the Knowledgeable and the Merciful. They should accept whatever has been decided by Allah for them, otherwise, the concept of obedience and submission to Allah does not exist in its totality. A person who calls himself a Muslim is that person who submitted himself with obedience to Allah without any reservation.”

As for the idea of men criticising their wives for bringing daughters rather than sons, the Qur’an states the following in Surah Al-Nahl (The Bees):

And they assign daughters for Allah! — Glory be to Him!–and for themselves (sons–the issue) they desire! When news is brought to one of them, of (the birth of) a female (child), his face darkens, and he is filled with inward grief! With shame does he hide himself from his people, because of the bad news he has had! Shall he retain it on (sufferance and) contempt, or bury it in the dust? Ah! What an evil (choice) they decide on? (16:57-59)

It seems that people accused Allah of having taken angels as females, while they themselves wince when a daughter is born to them but they hanker after sons. In this respect, Allah discussed this idea with logic to people so that we learn logic and common sense. The Qur’an states the following in Surah Al-Zukhruf (The Gold Adornments):

And they make into females angels who themselves serve Allah. Did they witness their creation? Their evidence will be recorded, and they will be called to account. (43:19)

In conclusion, it will be a good idea to quote the following two Ayat from Surah Al-Shura (Consultation) to demonstrate that the final decision of sex determination is in the Hands of Allah.

To Allah belongs the dominion of the Heavens and the earth. He creates what He wills (and plans). He bestows (children) male or female according to His Will (and Plan), or He bestows both males and females, and He leaves barren whom He wills: for He is full of knowledge and power. (42:49-50)

TYPES OF SEX RELATIONS: QUATERNARY SEX RELATION

This type of sex consists of seeing, smelling, and hearing anything that is related to sex. The biological organs of these senses react accordingly. The pituitary gland under the brain secretes and excretes its sexual hormones into the body stream through seeing, smelling, hearing and touching

.

 TERTIARY SEX RELATION

In this type of sexual relation, the couple may be involved in touching, hugging and kissing only. It may involve dancing too.

 SECONDARY SEX RELATION

This type of sexual relationship is considered to be the use of any bodily relation between a couple except the intercourse.

 PRIMARY SEX RELATION

This type of sexual relationship is the maximum involvement, i.e., the use of genital organs for sexual intercourse.

If a person is involved in the quaternary level, he will, undoubtedly, be led to the tertiary. When a person gets involved in any level without controlling himself, he will indeed be induced to go to the other level of the secondary. Finally, a person will be involved with the maximum type which is the primary sexual relationship.

Islam has instructed people to control themselves at every level of involvement; otherwise, they may commit a crime or a sin.

People are to abstain from the quaternary activities such as pornography, X-rated programs on television and adult books. They are to channel their sexual needs in the right time, place, and procedure. Then and only then they will be rewarded by Allah.

A Muslim is to refrain from attending dancing parties; he is to refrain from going out privately with the opposite sex, and he is to refrain from being in a place where he is alone with someone of the opposite sex. It is reported that in such private places the third party will be Satan to play his dirty role between both sexes. The Hadith of the Prophet (P) goes as follows:

No man has the right to be in privacy with a woman who is not lawful for him. Satan is their third party, unless there is a Mahram.

The other Hadith goes as follows:

Jabir (R) narrated that the Prophet (P) said:

Whoever believes in Allah and the hereafter should not allow himself to be in privacy with a woman who does not have Mahram from her side. Otherwise Satan is their third party.

UNLAWFUL SEX RELATIONS

In Islam there are rules and regulations stipulated so as to prevent any harm or diseases that might be caused through the process of sex relations. These rules are for the benefit of the individuals as well as the society. Prevention of venereal diseases is a top priority while enjoying sex. When practicing sex relations, one has to keep in mind the limits of his lusts, otherwise, he may unknowingly get involved in the unlawful practices. Hence, he may get diseases, harms, and sickness. Also he may earn the wrath of Allah.

Some of the major unlawful sex relations that Islam prohibits are the following:

 PRE-MARITAL RELATIONSHIP

There is no sex relationship before marriage, i.e., for the unmarried, they have no right to get involved in any type of sex involvement. Both sexes are not to hug, kiss, or even touch one another. They are even to cast down their gaze when talking to one another. They are not to expose their beauties or their bodies to one another, including the activities of swimming and sports. Fornication is condemned in Islam and any person caught is to be convicted and penalised accordingly. As far as casting down the gazes of both sexes, and not to expose the beauty of women, the Qur’an explicitly demands from the believers to do so in order to protect themselves from sexual involvement. Allah says the following in Surah Al-Nur (The Light):

Say to the believing men that they should lower their gaze and guard their modesty: that will make for greater purity for them: and God is well acquainted with all that they do.

And say to the believing women that they should lower their gaze and guard their modesty; that they should not display their beauty and ornaments except what (must ordinarily) appear thereof; that they should draw their veils over their bosoms and not display their beauty except to their husbands…(24:30-31)

 EXTRA-MARITAL RELATIONSHIP

Islam prohibits extra-marital relationships. The married couple should enjoy sex within their marital life. No one is allowed to go beyond his wife and enjoy sex with someone else. The wife has no right to go beyond her husband to enjoy sex outside her married life. The Qur’an is explicit about chastity, and the preservation of the dignity of the family. Allah says in Surah Al-Mu’minoon (The Believers):

And who guard their chastity except from their wives or what their right hands possess, for then they are not to be blamed; but those who seek anything beyond that are the transgressors. (23:5-7)

While cheating is condemned in Islam, sex beyond married life (adultery) is condemned too. Any person who commits adultery and is caught by four witnesses is to be charged, convicted and penalised accordingly.

 HOMOSEXUALITY

As far as homosexuality is concerned, Islam prohibits it completely and condemns it. Any male person who practices it is to receive the penalty in this world as well as in the hereafter. Any society that condones homosexuality is to be penalised all together: those who practice it, those who condone it, and those who defend it.

The Qur’an stated the story of the people of Prophet Lut, where Allah condemned them. He sent them earthquakes and showered them with brimstones, hard as baked clay, spread layer on layer. At the same time, the Qur’an states that similar penalties are not too far from those who do such wrong activity. Allah says in Surah Hood:

When our decree issued, we turned (the cities) upside down, and rained down on them brimstones hard as baked clay, spread, layer on layer.

Marked as from thy Lord: nor are they ever far from those who do wrong. (11:82-83)

The Qur’an accused the people during the days of Prophet Lut for the lewdness they committed by being involved in homosexuality. In Surah Al-A’raf (The Heights), Allah says:

We also (sent) Lut: He said to his people: Do you commit lewdness such as no people in creation (ever committed before you? For you practice your lusts on men in preference to women: You are indeed a people transgressing beyond bounds…

And we rained down on them a shower (of brimstone): then see what was the end of those who indulged in sin and crime! (7:80-81,84)

LESBIANISM

In as much as Islam prohibits the practice of homosexuality among male persons, it also prohibits the sexual relationship of females among themselves. It is an abnormal behaviour and it leads to psychological, moral, medical, social and religious abnormalities to the individuals and to the society.

 MASTURBATION

This type of sexual habit is considered by Islamic jurists as a minor fornication, and as such it is not condoned by Islam. Such an activity weakens the person’s health, and may lead to many other psychological and medical problems. Masturbating individuals may be led to abstinence from married life. Islam encourages people to get married and enjoy their matrimonial life.

 SODOMY

As far as Sodomy with animals is concerned, Islam prohibits it completely. Any type and all types of sexual relations with animals are totally illegal, unlawful and prohibited. Any person who practices sexual relationship with animals should be condemned and penalised.

It is stated by jurists that if this act is taken with an edible animal such as lamb, goat, cattle, etc., their meat is not to be consumed at all.

CHILD MOLESTATION

Molesting a child is a crime and immoral. No sexual advances or harms should be done to any child. Any person who molests a child should be condemned and penalized.

 INCEST

Sexual relationships among blood relatives is completely prohibited as it is immoral and condemned. Those who get involved in incest ought to be convicted and penalised. The Qur’an explicitly prohibits such type of sexual relationship. The following is stated in Surah Al-Nisa’ (The Women):

And do not many those women whom your fathers married, except what had happened in the past (before Islam). Lo! It was ever lewdness and abomination, and an evil way. Forbidden to you are your mothers, and your daughters, and your sisters, and your father’s sisters, and your brothers’ daughters, and your sisters’ daughters, and your foster mothers, and your foster-sisters, and your mothers-in-law, and your step-daughters who are under your protection (born) of your woman unto whom you have gone in–but if you have not gone in unto them, then it is no sin for you (to many their daughters) –and the wives of your sons who (spring) from your own loins. And (it is forbidden unto you) that you should have two sisters together, except what had already happened (of that nature) in the past (before Islam). Lo! Allah is ever Forgiving, Merciful. And all married women (are forbidden) unto you save those whom your right hand possess. ft is a decree of Allah for you. (4:22-24)

 TEMPORARY MARRIAGE

There are varieties of approaches to the concept of a temporary marriage such as casual, terms, experimental or temporary. Even to marry on paper for the sake of residency in a foreign country is considered cheating. Islam does not allow a Muslim to cheat anybody anywhere in the world.

Prophet Muhammad condemned those men and women who enjoy the frequent change of marital partners. These are the “tasters” who enjoy one partner for a while and then they shift from one to another and to a third, and so on.

Islam insists on permanency of marriage rather than a temporary one. For those who believe in Mut’ah, the Sunni Muslims do differ with their understanding and their interpretation. The Sunni Muslims believe that a temporary marriage is unacceptable and it was prohibited during the days of the Prophet himself. The following Hadith is reported: Narrated by Ali Ibn Abi Talib (R) that:

the Prophet (P) forbade temporary marriage during the days of the battle of Khaybar, as well as eating red meat of animal.

Narrated by Saburah Al-Juhany (R) that the Prophet forbade temporary marriage by saying:

O people! I allowed you to have Mut’ah, indeed Allah has forbidden it till the day of judgement. (Ibn Majah)

It is against the Islamic Shari’ah as well as against the common logic to enjoy a temporary marriage. If it happens that there are some men who wish to enjoy temporary marriage for one reason or the other, it is very improbable to find women who may wish to live that type of life unless they are loose or unchaste.

UNLAWFUL SEX RELATIONS:

A life on this planet is a life of responsibilities. Human beings are to live with rights and duties. To enjoy life they have to assume their responsibilities.

A married life is a life of enjoyment with rights and duties to be performed. The husband has duties towards his wife, and the latter has responsibilities towards her husband.

Since the family is the cornerstone for the society, then the family has to be established on solid foundation, otherwise, the whole society will collapse. To live with a common law means to live without responsibilities. A man who lives with a woman without assuming his responsibilities towards her, is a person who is cheating her. Even if the woman is willing to live with him in a common law, he should not encourage her or even allow her to do so. She will be undoubtedly the looser. If she bears a child from him, she will be solely responsible for all the consequences: financially, morally, socially, culturally, biologically, and otherwise.

A man can go his own way any time and to as many women as he wishes without any obligations, or any restrictions. He will be roaming around like an animal to fulfill his sexual desires, and at the same time, he would be running away from his responsibilities. He will leave all the problems on the shoulder of the women he lived with, and they themselves would pour their problems on the society to take care of them. Such type of habitat would create a chaos in the society.

A life of a common law will create more venereal diseases to both parties. Therefore, Islam does not allow such life to be practised in any society. Islam demands a matrimonial life where both rights and duties are enforced, and where sex life is enjoyed by the husband and his wife without any problems received from such a life

OTHER PROHIBITED SEX RELATIONS

While sexual relations are to continue between two legally married individuals of opposite sexes, there are some sex relations that are not allowed even among the married. Some of the major prohibited sex relations between spouses are the following:

 During Menstruation

During menstruation periods, husbands are not allowed to have primary sex intercourse. They may enjoy other secondary sex relations. Primary sex intercourse during menstruation is considered in Islam to be harmful to both the husband and the wife. The Qur’an states:

They ask thee concerning women’s courses, say:

they are a hurt and a pollution: so keep away from women in their courses, and do not approach them until they are clean, but when they have purified themselves, you may approach them in any manner, time, or place ordained for you by God. For God loves those who turn to Him constantly and He loves those who keep themselves pure and clean. (2:222)

After Birth Delivery

A man is not allowed to have sex intercourse with his wife after she delivers her baby for a period of about forty (40) days or until the blood flow stops. This period is called confinement, childbed, childbirth, or parturition. No sex intercourse should take place even if the mother had a miscarriage or a legal abortion. As long as the blood is flowing, her husband has no right to have primary sexual intercourse. As far as those women who give birth through caesarean section, primary sex intercourse can take place only after the mother’s blood flow stops, and after she has cleaned herself including a total shower or bath.

During Fasting

A man must abstain totally from any sex relationship with his wife during the month of fasting (Ramadan) from dawn to sunset. This applies also to the voluntary fasting. A total abstinence from sex is a must, otherwise, he may break his and her fasting. A penalty ought to take place, in case they have sexual intercourse during fasting. However, after sunset till dawn, they may enjoy their sexual relationship within the lawful ways.

The Qur’an states these rules explicitly. In Surah Al-Baqarah (The Cow), Allah says:

Permitted to you, on the night of the fasts, is the approach to your wives. They are your garments and you are their garments. God knows what you used to do secretly among yourselves; but He turned to you and forgave you; so now associate with them, and seek what God has ordained for

you,… (2:187)

During Pilgrimage

While pilgrims are in a state of consecration (Ihram), a Muslim is prohibited from having any type of sexual relationship, whether it is primary, secondary, tertiary or quaternary sexual relationships. Allah says in Surah Al-Baqarah (The Cow):

For Hajj are the months well known. If any one undertakes that duty therein, let there be no obscenity, nor wickedness, nor wrangling in the Hajj. And whatever good you do, (be sure) Allah knows it. And take a provision (with you) for the journey, but the best of provisions. (2:197)

 Oral Sex

There is no clear injunction in Islam about this type of sexual habit between spouses. It seems that the moral character of the early Muslims encouraged them to refrain from this type of sexual habit, and accordingly they did not practice it. It is understood that Prophet Muhammad (P) and his wife Aisha never saw or looked at one another’s genital organs. Morally speaking, oral sex is not a good habit to follow. Because of the psychological and health disorders that may affect a person, it is recommended to abstain from oral sex.

 Anal Sex

This is an abnormal sexual behaviour. Islam prohibits this act between husband and wife. It is similar to that of homosexuality except the latter is between two males. It is totally prohibited and condemned.

Husbands are instructed to abstain completely from this type of sexual behaviour with their wives. Otherwise, they will receive the curse of Allah. They will also be penalised by having health disorders. It is reported that Allah does not look after the one who uses anal sex. The same person is to be cursed and is considered to be a disbeliever. In one Hadith the Prophet said:

Narrated by Abu Hurairah (R) that the Prophet (P) said: He is cursed the one who approach his wife in her anus. (The Sunan)

One should remember that Allah instructed men to approach their wives in the right place. In Surah Al-Baqarah (The Cow) Allah says the following:

 Artificial Insemination

This procedure takes place for a wife who is to be inseminated with semen of a person other than her husband. Whether the person is known or unknown, it is considered to be a type of adultery using scientific and technological methods. Such a method, if used, will not allow the offspring to know their family relationship. Islam does not allow such an act to be practised.

Islam insists that marriage has to take place between a known man and a known woman in a legal and natural way. The offspring should know their biological parents who got married through legal procedures and through legal and natural relationship.

Waiting Periods

There are certain situations where a woman cannot marry and she has to have a waiting period. This means that she cannot have sexual relationship until the waiting periods are over. The waiting periods for a woman are:

After Divorce.

There is a temporary waiting period of three menses for a woman after divorce before she has the right to marry again. This waiting period is an Islamic injunction (law) and it is a preventive measure so that she will be able to know whether there is pregnancy from the first husband or not. The Qur’an states the following in Surah Al-Baqarah:

Divorced women shall wait concerning themselves for three monthly periods and it is not lawful for them to hide what Allah has created in their wombs, if they have faith in Allah and the Last Day. And their husbands have the better right to take them back in that period if they wish for reconciliation. And women shall have rights similar to the rights against them, according to what is equitable; but men have a degree (of advantage) over them. And God is Exalted in Power, Wise. (2:228)

Ealaa’ (husband’s vow).

There is a waiting period of a special case for a woman after Ealaa.’ When a husband vows not to have sex relationship with his wife and he deserts her for one reason or the other, it is called Ealaa.’ Allah demanded from a person not to harm his wife by deserting her. The maximum deserting period is for four months, otherwise, divorce shall take place or he should calm down and come back to his common sense. Allah says in Surah Al-Baqarah (The Cow) the following:

For those who take an oath for abstention from their wives, a waiting for four months is ordained; if then they return, Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful. But if their intention is firm for divorce, Allah hears and knows all things. (2:226-22 7)

If he comes back to her before the deadline of his vow, then he has to make an atonement. To be forgiven he has to fast three consecutive days.

After Husband’s Death.

There is a temporary waiting period of four months and ten days for a woman before she can marry again. This case applies to a situation when her husband dies. This is an Islamic law and is applied and implemented by Muslim jurists. It is a preventive measure so that the woman will be able to know whether there is pregnancy from the first husband or not. The Qur’an states in Surah Al-Baqarah (The Cow) the following:

If any of you die and leave widows behind; they shall wait concerning themselves four months and ten days. When they have fulfilled their term, there is no blame on you if they dispose of themselves in a just and reasonable manner. And Allah is well acquainted with what you do. There is no blame on you if you make an indirect offer of betrothal or hold it in your hearts. Allah knows that you cherish them in your hearts. But do not make a secret contract with them except that you speak to them in terms honourable, nor resolve on the tie of marriage till the term prescribed is fulfilled. And know that Allah knoweth what is in your hearts, and take heed of Him; and know that Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most-Forbearing. (2:234-235)

LAWFUL SEX RELATIONS

The legal sexual relationship that Islam recommends is the sexual relationship that takes place between the spouses who have entered into a permanent contract and was made public. Sex relationship is considered as a matter of worship. Muslims are encouraged to get married as soon as they are ready to assume responsibility. Through marriage Muslims may earn half of their faith, and indeed they will complete their faith through marriage. In one Hadith the Prophet (P) said:

Narrated by Anas (R) that the Prophet (P) said:

Whoever Allah bestowed upon him a virtuous woman He helped him with half of his religion; so he should heed in Allah with the other half (Tabarani and Al-Hakem)

Sex relationship is not a thing that one is to be ashamed of. It is to be taken as a solemn act as anything in life. Celibacy is not necessarily a virtue, and might be considered a vice too.

Sex relationship is considered by the Qur’an as a husbandman’s tilth; it is something serious to him. He sows the seeds of his own biological makeup, and he is to reap the harvest. Of course, he is to choose his own time, place, and mode of biological cultivation. A wise husband is not to sow out of season. He is neither to cultivate in a way where he injures, or exhausts the soil or himself. He is calm, considerate, wise, and sensible. He is to have mutual consideration, agreement and feelings with his wife. One has to remember that with the legal sex relationship there is a spiritual aspect in it. During sexual relationships, one has to realise that he is dealing with a human being and his approach should be humane. He is to recognise that he is responsible to Allah for anything he does, he thinks, and he performs.

The Qur’an explains the husbandman’s tilth in Surah Al-Baqarah (The Cow) in the following way:

Your wives are as a tilth unto you; so approach your tilth when or how you will; but do some good act for your souls before hand; and fear God, and know that you are to meet Him (in the Hereafter), and give (these) good tidings to those who believe. (2:223)

Throughout the whole year, the spouses can enjoy their matrimonial relationship except for those restrictions mentioned in the previous chapter. It should be mentioned here that the time, place and manners are very important in Islam.

Abdullah Yusuf Ali in his translation and commentary says in his footnote 248:

The word Hirth is a comprehensive word referring to manner, time or place. The most delicate matters are here referred to in the most discreet and yet helpful terms. In sex morality, manner, time and place are all important. The highest standards are set by social laws, by our own refined instinct of mutual consideration, and above all, by the light shed by the highest teachers from the wisdom which they receive from the Maker, Who loves purity and cleanliness in all things. (Abdullah Yusuf Ali)

MANNERS IN SEX RELATIONS

Islam teaches men and women how to observe good manners in sexual relationship. These manners are meant to keep a couple’s relationship in harmony, as well as improve the humane relations. Some of these manners are summarised as follows:

1. Sex relation is sacred and should be in privacy of every living creature. No one should talk about it in public unless it is a matter of medical reason. No one should see them, even their own children or even animals if they are around them. It is reported that angels in the house shy away when a couple is involved in sexual relationship. It was reported in the book of Hadith of Al-Bukhari, that the Prophet was asked whether it was o.k. for a person to expose his private organs and be nude in his private life without his wife. The answer was no, as long as Allah is seeing him. The Hadith goes as follows:

2. A couple involved in sexual acts should be under a sheet cover to prevent indecency and avoid exposure.

3. They should keep some type of cloth on their bodies so that they don’t look completely naked like animals.

4. Preferably, the couple should perform ablution before having sexual intercourse.

5. It is better to start with the Name of Allah, and then to read Surah Al-Ikhlas (Purity of Faith) in the Qur’an. The couple should say:

Bismillah!

O Allah! Protect us from Satan, and protect our offspring from him too. -Agreed-

6. The husband is not to get involved in primary sexual intercourse before getting involved with the tertiary and secondary sexual relationship.

7. Islam prohibits eccentric, violent, harmful and dirty forms of sexual relationships.

8. Islam recommends that the couple don’t stare at the private parts of one another.

9. If a person is to repeat his sexual intercourse, he is recommended to make ablution. In this way it will give him more strength to assume his activity. It is reported in the Book of Hadith of Muslim that the Prophet said:

10. To take a complete bath is a must after sexual intercourse. Otherwise, they won’t be able to offer their daily prayers. They can’t read or touch the Qur’an or even enter the prayer area of the Mosque. They can’t even shave while they are still in a state of physical impurity or uncleanliness. The Qur’an is very explicit about total bath after sexual relationship between spouses. Allah says in Surah Al-Ma’idah (The Table Spread) the following:

If you are in a state of ceremonial impurity, bathe your whole body… 5:6)

11. Muslims are instructed not to allow their pubic hair, arm pit hair and finger or toe nails to grow too long. For the hairs, they are not to exceed forty days, while for the nails, they are to cut them weekly if possible.

12. Islam demands that all males are to be circumcised at a younger age.

13. Married couple is recommended not to exceed sexual intercourse of more than 3 times per week in order to prevent physical weakness.

14. Married couple is prohibited from licking or sucking the genital organs (oral sex) of one another.

15. Husbands are to refrain from anal sex, otherwise, Allah’s curse may fall on them (males). This type of a curse is not a spiritual one only, but medical diseases may hit them too. In one of the Hadith reported by Ahmad that the Prophet said:

Indeed Allah is not shy from saying the Truth: Don’t approach your wives in their anus. (Ahmad)

16. Masturbation for the man is prohibited in Islam unless a man is afraid of committing a greater sin such as rape or adultery. As far as masturbation for the woman is concerned, it is totally prohibited.

17. Circumcision is a must for males while for girls it is not needed unless her clitoris is long and the urologist recommends it.

18. Artificial insemination is totally prohibited as it is a technological way of fornication or adultery.

19. Tube babies from a third person other than the legal and natural parents is not allowed in Islam.

20. Surrogate motherhood is prohibited in Islam because the baby would belong to one father and two mothers

.

DISEASES RELATED TO SEX

Diseases transmitted through sexual contacts are the most common communicable diseases in the world. The number of individuals infected has continued to increase each year for almost the past three decades. The World Health Organisation (WHO) of the United Nations has estimated that over 250 million people are infected annually with gonorrhoea, and over 50 million with syphilis. The Centre for Disease Control (CDC) in Atlanta, Georgia, estimated in 1976 that there were close to 3 million cases of gonorrhoea, and over 400,000 cases of syphilis needing treatment in the USA. The incidence of the majority of the other sexually transmitted diseases is unknown.

During the past 35 years, it has been noted that non-specific diseases such as scabies, genital warts, herpes genitalis, urethritis, trichomoniasis, genital candidiasis, pediculosis pubis, molluscum contagiosum, and a variety of other genito-urinary conditions have been more prevalent than the classical venereal diseases, such as syphilis, chancroid, gonorrhea, lymphogranuloma venereum, and granuloma inguinale.

The current tendency is to consider all these diseases as sexually transmitted and patients are to be examined, treated and followed up by the same physician.

The incidence of these diseases has risen despite the progress made in their diagnosis and treatment.

DISEASES RELATED TO SEX: CAUSES OF DISEASES

Some of the major factors responsible for this medical paradox are:

1. Changes in sexual behaviour during the past 35 years including the widespread use of contraceptive pills and intra-uterine contraceptive devices.

2. The emergence of strains of organisms less sensitive to antibiotics.

3. Women are frequently symptomless carriers of infecting agents.

4. The ease of travelling in the western world.

5. A high incidence of infection in homosexual men associated with promiscuity and ignorance.

6. Decrease in moral standards which turned out to be a matter of relativity rather than heavenly rules and regulations.

 CONTROL

Control of sexually transmitted diseases depends upon:

1. Morality

2. Abstinence from being involved in immorality

3. Sex education based on the heavenly teachings of God to all mankind

SEXUALLY TRANSMITTED DISEASES

Some of the major sexually transmitted diseases are the following:

1. Gonorrhoea

2. Non-specific genital infections

3. Syphilis: a) Acquired b) Congenital

4. Trichomoniasis

5. Genital Candidiasis

6. Balanoposthitis; balanitis

7. Proctitis

8. Chancroid

9. Lymphogranuloma Venereum

10. Granuloma Inguinale

11. Genital Herpes

12. Genital Warts

13. AIDS

MODESTY AND DECENCY

Islam is a total and a complete way of life. It legislates code of ethics, morality, decency and modesty. Islam encourages moderation and condemns extremism. Islam also protects the individual from getting involved in unlawful or harmful way of life. The idea of protection is a preventive measure that Islam upholds before any curative measures are to be used or to be implemented. Islam recognises the biological make up and the biological needs of every human being. After the age of puberty, the genital organs of each person starts functioning. Therefore, Islam demands that we try to protect ourselves from getting involved in wrong (Haram) sex.

It is understood that every person has a pituitary gland under his/her brain. This gland assumes its responsibility directly without any permission. Through the senses of smell, look, touch, taste, and hearing, the pituitary gland momentarily starts pouring its hormones, i.e., it secretes and excretes all types of hormones, including the sex hormones into the blood stream. These hormones influence the organs, the systems, the body and the individual as a whole in one way or the other.

 PREVENTIVE MEASURES

As far as modesty and decency in sex is concerned, one has to use preventive measures, otherwise, it would be too late to do anything about it. Some of the preventive measures that Islam legislates are the following:

1. One should refrain from the quaternary type of sexual behaviour. He must observe his senses, i.e., he should try his best to caste down his sight when he is looking at the opposite sex. In so doing, he will not be attracted or involved. This advice has been given by Allah to the believing men and women without exceptions. The Qur’an is very explicit about this point. In Surah Al-Nur (The Light), Allah says the following:

Say to the believing men that they should lower their gaze and guard their modesty that will make for greater purity for them and Allah is well acquainted with all that they do. And say to the believing women that they should lower their gaze and guard their modesty; that they should not display their beauty and ornaments except what (ordinarily) appear thereof; that they should draw their veils over their bosoms and not display their beauty except to their husbands, their fathers, their husbands’ fathers, their sons, their husbands’ sons, their brothers or their brothers’ sons, or their sisters’ sons, or their women, or those slaves whom their right hand possess, or male attendants free of sexual desires, or small children who have no carnal knowledge of women. And that they should not strike their feet in order to draw attention to their hidden ornaments. And O you believers, turn you all together towards Allah in repentance that you may be successful. (24:30-31)

As such, Muslims are to refrain from looking at pictures that induce sex or immorality. This includes pornography, playboy magazine, penthouse, and adult books, films, videos, or x-rated programs.

2. In as much as the sense of seeing is to be protected, the sense of hearing is also to be prevented from listening to vulgarity, immorality or even unlawful stories. Listening to music that induce sex, vulgarity, indecency or immorality is unlawful to a Muslim.

3. Men and women should not expose their beauty to one another, otherwise, they may get involved in immorality.

4. Women in particular should not expose their ornaments, their beauty and/or their bodies. There are rules and regulations concerning this issue. In public, Islam demands the following regarding dress, appearance and attire:

(a) A Woman should cover all her body from top to bottom except her face and her hands.

(b) The dress should be loose.

(c) The dress should not be transparent.

(d) Her head and all her hair are to be covered.

(e) No cosmetics or lipsticks are to be used on face, including the lips and the eyelids.

(f) Her ornaments are not to be visible or their clicking noise to be heard.

5. Islam demands from Muslims not to have mixing between the two sexes; such as, swimming, dancing, sports, or even sitting next to each other side-by-side or face-to-face.

6. Islam recommends that men and women do not shake hands. Of course, Islam does not allow kissing, hugging or other similar activities.

7. Privacy between the two sexes is prohibited in Islam; otherwise, Satan will be their third party. He will whisper in their hearts to get them involved in any level of sex relationship. This ordainment is to be followed anywhere in society, and especially in offices, jobs and services. It was reported that the Prophet said:

Narrated by Jabir (R) that the Prophet (P) said:

Whoever believes in Allah and the Day of Judgement should not seclude (isolate) himself with a lady who does not have a Mahram (a relative who cannot marry her); otherwise Satan will be their third party.

In another Hadith Muslims are instructed to abstain from privacy between two sexes. The following is reported:

Narrated by Ibn Abbas (R) that the Prophet (P) said:

No one is allowed to meet a woman in privacy unless there is a Mahram. (Agreed)

8. When coming to the Masjid, Muslim men and women should observe the following recommendations:

(a) The mosque is a place of worship to Allah. It is His House. Muslims are coming as guests, and the Host is no more than Allah Himself. Muslims have to respect His House and to obey His commandments.

(b) The mosque has its own sanctity, and Muslims are to observe their obligations to Allah and to His House.

(c) The code of Islamic dress should be observed by both men and women.

(d) The mosque has to have two independent doors: one for men the other for women.

(e) There should be separate facilities for men and women so that free mixing will not be allowed.

(f) During prayers it is understood that there are separate places for men and women; or at least they should make separate lines. Men will take the first rows followed by boys, then girls and then by women. This system is to be followed even if there are lectures or even business discussion are to take place.

Muslims come to the House of Allah to pray and to ask forgiveness. They are to learn their religion and they are to try to apply its teachings in their private and public life. They come to the Masjid to earn blessings, mercy and guidance from Allah. They don’t come to the Masjid to earn the wrath of Allah. As a conclusion, Muslims are to obey Allah and to follow His rules and regulations as much as possible, especially in the House of worship.

9. Spouses have the right to enjoy their matrimonial life anytime during the day or night. The Qur’an teaches parents to be in privacy from their children whenever they want to relax or entertain themselves. The Qur’an stipulates three periods in a twenty-four hour day where parents are to be in privacy. Their children are to knock at the door of the bedroom before entering so that they will not be over exposed. This type of instruction teaches decency, modesty, manners, behaviour, protection and a happy life to all.

This type of instruction is found in Surah Al-Noor (The Light) where Allah says:

O you who believe, let those whom your right hands possess, and the (children) among you who have not come of age, ask your permission (before they come to your presence). On three occasions: before morning prayer; the while you doff your clothes for the noonday heat; and after the late -night prayer. These are your three times of undress: outside those times it is not wrong for you or from them to move about attending to each other. Thus does Allah make clear the signs to you.. For Allah is full of knowledge and wisdom. But when the children among you come of age, let them (also) ask for permission, as do those before them. Thus does Allah make clear his signs to you, for Allah is full of knowledge and wisdom. (24:58-59)

10. For those who are elderly, there is no blame on them if they lay aside their outer garments on the condition they don’t display their beauty. They should realise that modesty is the name of the game. The Qur’an states the following in Surah Al-Noor (The Light):

Such elderly women as are past the prospect of marriage. There is no blame on them if they lay aside their (outer) garments, provided they make not a wanton display of their beauty, but it is best for them to be modest, and Allah is One Who sees and knows all things. (24:60)

11. Islam prohibits men to dress like women and the reverse is also prohibited. It is not only in their dressing that Islam prohibits, but also through talking, walking and body movement. The following Hadith is reported: Narrated by Abu Hurairah (R):

The Prophet cursed the man who dresses himself to look like a woman, and the woman who dresses herself to look like a man. (Abu Dawood)

SEX INQUIRIES: Questions and Answers

Many questions were raised at different places. All of which were genuine and the individuals were sincere in asking such questions. Their questions were presented as either they were interested to know the lawful in order to please Allah, or to be away from any unlawful and harmful diseases such as venereal diseases.

Some selected questions are used here with answers. The answers may not be the best, but the author tried his best to be informative, to the point, and sincere in his answers. These questions are grouped according to different subjects.

BIRTH CONTROL

Q1. What does Islam say about birth control?

A1. The word “Birth Control” reflects the idea that someone, a group, a society or a government is to control birth for group, a society or a government is to control birth for one reason or the other. The idea of control is rejected by Islam. No government has the right to legislate rules to control the number of children for every family. Birth control is denounced by Islam and it is against its teachings. Islam encourages Muslims to get married and have children.

Q2. Since birth control is not accepted by Islam, how about family planning?

A2. Family planning is acceptable in Islam if it is conducted by a married couple. Family planning is to be followed with moral standards, and that no one party is to be hurt physically, medically, biologically, psychologically, emotionally or spiritually.

 EDUCATION

Q1. Can I get sex education by reading Playboy, Penthouse and similar magazines? Should I read adult books and watch x-rated movies?

A1. There are two major sources for sex education: One would be the wrong source of information and the other is the right one. To get the right information about sex through such magazines or adult movies and books would be a terrible mistake. The information from these sources is personal, relative, and without any standard of morality. Remember that Allah is seeing you, watching you, hearing you and recording everything you do, you read, you write or you watch.

Q2. When is the best time to have sexual intercourse with my wife?

A2. There is no best time, but whenever both are interested. However, one has to have the precursor relationship before having sexual intercourse. It is taken for granted that night time is most probably the most appropriate time.

 FASTING

Q1. One brother called and said that he had sex relationship with his wife in Ramadan after dawn (Fajr) but before sunrise. It was his understanding that this was all right as long as it took place before sunrise.

Another brother called and stated that it was his understanding that sex relationships could continue until but not after that.

A1: Concerning the first question, it is unlawful to have any sex with his wife after dawn. The fasting is nullified, and he has to make up for it. He is not to repeat this habit and Allah is Merciful and Forgiving.

The other friend is also wrong in his understanding. It is unlawful for him to have sex with his wife as long as he is in a state of fasting from dawn to sunset.

 FASTING

Q2: One brother called and said that he had sex relationship with his wife before dawn. Later he found out that dawn had already started. What should he do?

A2: The brother is to continue his fasting. The ‘Ulema’ reported that as long as the person did not know at that time, Allah is Forgiving and Merciful. His fast is valid Insha’ Allah.

Q3: Some sisters called and said that during Ramadan they take hormonal tablets to delay their menstruation period. Hence they can fast the whole month of Ramadan without having to worry about missing their fasts. Is it o.k. to do so?

A3: It is not the best way to do. Biologically, Allah made women to menstruate for many reasons. They were made to be exempted from their daily prayers without having to make up for the missing ones. They have to abstain from fasting and make it later. All these provisions which are being instituted by Allah were made for the benefit of the women. They are provisions and privileges to be used and to be grateful to Allah. If anyone does not wish to make use of these privileges, it would be her own desire to receive hardship and possibly to suffer.

The use of hormonal tablets to stop menstruation will bring cramps and pain in the abdomen. Others may suffer from other problems such as headache, and in making menstruation irregular in the near future.

Therefore, it is better for a Muslim woman to enjoy the privileges that Allah bestowed upon her rather than insisting to follow the hard way that will lead to many other side relations and problems for her.

Q4: I do know that there is no sex relation during Ramadan from dawn to sunset. However, in case I had an interest to do it, would I break my fast? Is there a penalty for that?

A4: Of course, it is unlawful to have sex in Ramadan during the fasting hours from dawn to sunset. You may have it after breaking the fast. You should control your lust and remember that fasting is to train us how to have self-control, self-restraint, self-obedience and self-discipline.

If you do it unintentionally, you will break your fast and you have to make up for it. However, if you do it intentionally, then even if you fast the whole year as a substitute for that day you may not make up for it. Remember! You may have it only after sunset till dawn

.

 PILGRIMAGE

Q1: Some sisters said that during pilgrimage they take hormonal tablets to delay their menses. In this way, they can continue their pilgrimage rites without being disturbed. What does Islam say about it?

Q2: During pilgrimage, I broke my Ihram by having sex with my wife. What do I do?

A2: If you broke your Ihram unintentionally, you have lost your pilgrimage. You are to continue the rituals, but you have to go a second time to Makkah to perform Haj as the first one was broken.

If you had sex intentionally while you know it is unlawful, it becomes a serious matter. You have to check on your inner conscience and you should try to purify yourself before repeating a second Haj.

 INCEST/BREEDING

Q1: Since incest and inbreeding are prohibited in Islam, can I marry my immediate cousin?

A1: Incest is completely prohibited in Islam because it brings forward immorality and biogenetic disasters to the offsprings. Allah has prohibited incest and inbreeding, otherwise, His curse will fall on those who practice such approaches.

Islam explains that the closest ones you may marry are your first cousins from either parents. Genetically there is no danger to the offsprings, unless you insist to do it generation after generation.

Q2: Some Non-Muslim societies prohibit the marriage of first cousins. What can we do as Muslims?

A2: Muslims are to abide first by the Islamic Shar’iah. They can perform the Islamic marriage according to the Islamic laws.

On the other hand, Muslims should inform the local and federal governments about the Muslim personal laws. They should make sure that these laws are honored by the Non-Muslim countries.

 LIVING HABITAT

Q1: Is it halal for my husband’s brother (brother-in-law) to live with us? He is single and we support him and his higher education.

A1: It is not halal to let your brother-in-law live with you. Your husband goes to his job while your brother-in-law’s timing is different. The very idea that he is grown up and is at the same house may create problems: psychological, social, spiritual, and biological. Our beloved Prophet forbade us to allow such relative as well as your husband’s nephew or his cousin to live with you in the same house. The Prophet mentioned such a situation in the Real Death.

 MENSES

Q1: One sister called complaining that her husband had primary sex relationship with her during her menstrual period. She objected, but he forced her into it. What is she to do in such a situation?

A1: The brother is wrong totally in having primary sex with his wife during her menstruation period. She should object on one hand, and she should inform him that such an act is Haram (unlawful) in Islam. Otherwise, she should inform him that he may catch venereal diseases such as syphilis or AIDS. That husband had to understand that he had to take a rest from sexual indulgence during that period in order to be rejuvenated.

SEX INQUIRIES: MENSES

Q2: One brother asked if it is o.k. to use condoms and to have sex relationship with his wife during her menses. He is protecting himself from VD. What does Islam say about it?

A2: During her menses, a woman has been granted a resting period by Allah. The husband has to train himself to have a resting period too. He is to abstain from primary sex, otherwise, he may get physically weak.

 ANAL SEX

Q1: If anal sex with a wife is unlawful because it may bring diseases, then is it o.k. to use condoms as a protective measure and have such type of sexual relationship?

A1: The anal sex behaviour is abnormal. Allah disdained it and blamed anyone who would follow the abnormal way of life. While anal sex brings diseases and the curse of Allah, it teaches a person how to get involved in the abnormal ways in life. To get involved in such an abnormal way of sex life, it may lead a person to think how to protect himself only from the physical and biological damage rather than the spiritual one. Also, a person may be led in his thinking that if he can have anal sex with his wife why not have anal sex (sodomy) with animals. One habit leads to a bigger and worse behaviour.

 SURROGATE

Q1: Since the surrogate mother system is not allowed in Islam, how about if my husband marries another woman and both of us are his wives? Then my ova will be fertilised in a tube from the semen of my husband and then after fertilisation, it will be implanted into the womb of his second wife. The father is one and is known. The two mothers of the baby are the legal wives of the same husband according to Islam laws.

A1: Both cases cannot be equated or be similar. The first case, the baby is living in the womb of the mother, while the second case the baby is already born. He is outside the womb of his mother. The other thing is that the type of life, the type of nourishment, and the duration of life is quite different.

Yes, the husband may marry legally more than one wife, but if a child is born, his father and mother are known and the mother is not being shared by another. In case of a surrogate mother, the child is shared biologically by two mothers.

The problem is to be created if divorce takes place. The custody of the child is to be with his mother as long as he is under the age of puberty. Hence, the child is to be split in between two mothers. Both will be fighting for his custody.

 TAHARRAH

Q1: Is it true that after sex intercourse, one has to have a complete bath/shower? Is it not enough to wash our genital organs? If not, would it be o.k. if we take a shower but don’t wash our heads so as not to disturb the coiffeur and the hair style?

A1: Muslims are instructed to have a complete bath or a shower after having sex intercourse. It is for cleanliness, refreshing and relaxing. It is not enough to wash the genital areas only because the sexual hormones were secreted from the pituitary gland to the whole body. Hence, the whole body was affected and responded. Therefore, a complete bath or shower has to be taken.

As far as the head, it should be understood that the total body has to be washed, bathed, rubbed, and cleaned with water, including the head. For those who worry about the hairdo, they should also worry about the pleasure of Allah, the Creator, and about the total cleanliness of the whole body.

Q2: Can I delay taking a complete bath after sexual intercourse? If yes, for how long?

A2: If you had sexual intercourse at night, you may delay having a complete bath till morning. However, it is better to have it immediately for many reasons: cleanliness, refreshing, and to offer the next Salat. Above all, if a person dies, he should be in a state of Tahara (cleanliness) and in a state of Wudu’ too, not in a state of Janabah (unclean).

Q3: Can I go outside the house when I am still in a state of Janabah?

A3: You may go outside the house if there is a need to do so; but for a practicing Muslim, he should be always in a state of Taharah (cleanliness), as well as in a state of Wudu; whether inside or outside the house.

Q4: If I am in a state of Janabah, can I eat and do other activities inside the house before I take a bath?

A4: You may do any activity inside the house whether eating, drinking or other necessary items while you are still in a state of Janabah. However, a Muslim’s life is considered a matter of worship to Allah. This means that a practising Muslim tries his best to stay in a state of cleanliness and with Wudu’ so as to be rewarded by Allah for his activities.

ADDENDUM (A): CONTRACEPTION:

GENERAL

The subject of contraception may be very sensitive to discuss from a religious aspect without going into the medical aspects. One must discuss the different methods used in contraception, and the side effects that may occur. Then one must determine whether each method and procedure is acceptable from the religious point of view or not.

Islam is a total and complete way of life. It is a comprehensive system and code of ethics and morality. A determination of the Halal (lawful) or Haram (unlawful) nature of something must rely on the Qur’an, Hadith and Sunnah of the Prophet. If the information is not found in any of them, then one must use analogy (Qiyas). One should also study the decisions of the Muslim ‘Ulama’ in different parts of the world.

In this chapter, the two authors (Dr Mohammad Shafi, MD. is the other author) are presenting the medical and the religious aspects concerning the different varieties of contraceptives. The medical discussions have been brief. For more information, the reader is requested to consult his/her physician. For each type of contraceptive analysed, the term “Failure rate” refers to the number of pregnancies that would occur per 100 couples using that method in one year.

We pray to Allah (swt) to accept our humble efforts and forgive us our shortcomings.

“[Contraception is] the control of fertility to prevent pregnancy. There are various contraceptive methods that work in different ways, but their basic action is either to stop the sperm and the ovum from meeting in the fallopian tube (thus preventing conception or fertilisation) or to prevent a fertilised ovum from implanting in the lining of the uterus.

ISLAMIC VIEWS ON CONTRACEPTION

The term “Family Planning” refers to contraception used by a husband and wife to plan a family by spacing pregnancies. The term “birth control” on the other hand connotates the use of contraception to avoid pregnancy as a result of sexual relations, and may take the place outside the marriage. Islamically, any attempt to use contraception as a means of promoting promiscuity is unacceptable. According to Islam, the natural feelings between a man and a woman are to be channeled into the institution of marriage. A husband and wife may find enjoyment in each other, but marital relations must be to procreate. Any children resulting from marital relations should be accepted as gifts from Allah (swt) and should be brought into this world as new Muslims. Islam may allow some “family planning” to make it more feasible, economically, socially, and martially, to raise a successful family, according to the principles of Islam. However, we must study each method before giving an opinion.

CONTRACEPTIVE METHODS

The various contraceptive methods available today are listed below. To facilitate discussion these methods will be categorised by those which prevent conception and those which work after conception has already taken place.

A. Preventive Methods

The contraceptive methods that prevent fertilisation of the ovum are:

1. Abstinence

2. Rhythm methods or Natural Family Planning

3. Withdrawal

4. Spermicides

5. Male and Female Condom

6. Sponge

7. Diaphragm

8. Cervical Cap

B. Post Conception Methods

The conceptive methods that work after the ovum has been fertilised are:

14. Intra-uterine contraceptive devices (IUD), i.e. Lippes’ Loop, Safe T Coil, CU 7, and Progestasert.

15. RU 486

16. Abortion

The various methods of contraceptive used today are discussed below, first medically, then Islamically. All forms of contraception must be used with the agreement of both the husband and his own wife.

1. Abstinence: Abstinence means avoiding marital relations for a period of time. This method is the best and the safest method. Obviously this is not desirable for husband or wife except for short term.

2. Natural Family Planning: This is a way of telling on which days of the month a woman is most likely to get pregnant and avoid having sex on those days. The method involves a woman checking her body temperature on a daily basis and also checking on the quality of cervical mucus. The failure rate is approximately 15%. This is one of the methods with the least side effects and does not require a physician’s assistance after the initial consultation. Religiously speaking it is acceptable.

3. Withdrawal: This method was practised by the early Muslims to avoid pregnancy. This method was reported to the Prophet, and he did not object to it. It is a safe method and has no negative side effects. The failure rate is 15%.

4. Spermicides: Spermicides are available in foam, cream, jelly or tablet form to be inserted into the vagina. Spermicides kill the sperm before fertilisation. The failure rate is approximately 15%.

5. Male and Female condoms: Condoms are latex covering for either the male or female genitalia for use during marital relations. The failure rate is approximately 15%. The use of condoms in combination with other methods of contraception greatly lessens the failure rate and prevents the sexual transmission of disease.

6. Sponge: A small, round specially made sponge already filled with spermicide. It is placed in the vagina over the cervix. Failure rate is approximately 15%. It is considered as one of the preventive methods used to prevent fertilization. In this process the sperms are killed before reaching the ovum.

7. Diaphragm: A diaphragm is a round cup that is placed in the vagina. The diaphragm are available in different sizes and the appropriate size must be measured and prescribed by the physician or a trained nurse. The woman must be taught how to use it. The diaphragm keeps the sperm away from the cervix and uterus. Failure rate is approximately 10%.

8. Cervical Cap: This is also a rubber cup and works like a diaphragm but it is smaller and fitted onto the woman’s cervix. A doctor or a trained nurse must select the right size and teach the woman how to use it. Failure rate is approximately 10%.

9. The Pill: The pill prevents the release of eggs from the woman’s ovaries. It provides 24 hours per day protection. It must be taken everyday, preferably the same time every day. The failure rate is approximately 1%-2%. There are many varieties of pills on the market. The word pill means a group of oral drug preparations containing a progesterone often combined with and estrogen which is taken by the woman. All types of oral contraceptives, combined pills and minipills are commonly known as the “pill.”

The combined pill increases the level of estrogen and progesterone in the body. Therefore it interferes with the production by the pituitary gland of two gonadotropin hormones called Follicle Stimulating Hormone (FSH) and Luteinizing Hormone (LH). This action in turn prevents ovulation.

The pill also makes menstrual cycles more regular. It may lessen bleeding and painful cramps, and is often prescribed for non-contraceptive use for these advantages. The Pill is also known to prevent development of ovarian cysts. A few women who take estrogen containing pills may experience nausea and vomiting, weight gain, depression, breast swelling, reduced sex drive, increase appetite, cramps in the legs and abdomen, headaches, and dizziness. More serious but rare adverse effects of these pills is the risk of a thrombosis causing a stroke, embolism, or myocardinal infraction (heart attack), heart disease or cause hypertension, gallstones, jaundice, and extremely rarely, liver tumor.

Adiverse effects are more likely to occur with high doses of estrogen, low estrogen preparations are prescribed whenever possible. Women taking oral contraceptives should receive regular checkups, including blood pressure, weight check and cervical smear tests.

10. Depo Provera: Depo Provera is a medication which is given in the doctor’s office by injection. It provides protection from pregnancy for three months. It works by preventing the release of eggs from the ovary and changing the quality of the cervical mucus. The failure rate is approximately 1%.

11. Norplant: Norplant is a set of six small plastic tubes loaded with medication. These capsules are implanted under the skin of the woman’s upper arm under local anesthesia. It provides 24 hour per day protection for five years. Failure rate is less than 1%. This type of medicinal approach does necessitate the use of a hormone called progestogen (i.e. progesterone). They make the cervical mucus impermeable to sperm and reducing the production of gonadotropin hormones. Accordingly it prevents eggs from ripening in the ovary.

The above mentioned methods number 1 through 11, are all temporary. They may be used to space pregnancies and when the method is discontinued, the woman can get pregnant again. Since the Prophet did not object to the withdrawal method, it is inferred that temporary methods of contraception used to space pregnancies are acceptable in Islam. However, there are certain conditions discussed in the final remarks, which must be met. Medically speaking though, all the above mentioned methods have acceptable levels of side effects to warrant the advantages.

12. Tubal Sterilisation: The tubal ligation is an operation done for the woman to prevent pregnancy. It can be done immediately after the birth of a baby while the woman is still in the hospital. It can also be done at other times on an outpatient basis. Also known as “having your tubes tied,” this procedure blocks the tubes and prevents the egg and the sperm from getting together. Tubal sterilisation is permanent. Failure rate is approximately 0-1%.

13. Vasectomy: A vasectomy is a minor surgery done on outpatient basis on the man. The tube connecting the testicles and the penis (vase) is cut. It prevents the release of the sperm. A vasectomy is permanent. It usually starts working within four months after the surgery. Failure rate is approximately 0-1%. This operation may cause psychological problems that affect sexual performance.

The last two methods tubal sterilisation and vasectomy are permanent. Any method that leads to permanency is not acceptable to the Islamic Shari’ah unless another pregnancy would create serious danger to the life of the wife. Advance microsurgical reversal and assisted production techniques have made it possible for people to have children after these procedures. Nevertheless, since the intention with these methods is permanent sterilisation, they are not acceptable in Islam. For those who do not wish to have more children, have to think twice before considering these procedures. Therefore, it is better to have a temporary arrangement rather than a permanent one. The capacity to have children is a lifetime blessing from Allah and we must not shun away from it for convenience.

14. IUD: (Intrauterine Device): An IUD is a piece of plastic manufactured in different shapes (for example Lippes’ Loop, Delkon Shield, Progestasert, Safe-T Coil). It is placed in the uterus by the physician or a specially trained nurse. It provides protection 24 hours per day, as long as the IUD is in place. Some of the IUD’s are plain plastic such as Lippes’ Loop. The others carry copper for additional protection for example CU 7 and yet others carry hormones such as Progestasert. Most IUD’s make the lining of the uterus unsuitable for implantation of fertilised ovum. Hormone loaded IUDs also prevent ovulation. The failure rate is approximately 2-4%. Immediately after the insertion of IUD there may be heavy bleeding or pain. Menstruation may become irregular, heavier, and more painful. Pelvic inflammatory disease may develop and if not treated promptly may lead to permanent infertility. Many pharmaceutical companies have discontinued the manufacture and sale of IUDs in the U.S.A. because of the large number of lawsuits claiming that IUDs have caused serious complications.

15. RU 486: RU 486 is a relatively new medication. It is taken by mouth after the suspected fertilisation. It essentially causes a spontaneous miscarriage of an early pregnancy, thus it is also commonly known as the “abortion pill.”

16. Post Coital Contraception: This method also known as the “morning after pill”. It involves high doses of estrogen and progesterone combinations. The hormones are used to upset the fertilisation process and to get rid of the possibly already fertilised ovum. It should not be taken without the supervision of a physician. This method of contraceptive is used after matrimonial relations in case of failure or absence of the other contraceptive methods.

The contraceptive methods of IUD, RU 486 and Post-Coital Contraception are not acceptable in Islam. These methods are unlawful (Haram) on the basis that they interfere with the development of a pregnancy after the ovum has been fertilized. Killing the fetus and aborting it is totally Haram.

FINAL REMARKS

Islam advocates the establishment of a solid and a stable family life. Islam also advocates the upbringing of children who will inherit the Message of Allah and establish the rules and regulations of Allah on this planet Earth. However, the use of Family Planning may or may not be acceptable in Islam. It depends upon the method used, the medicine being used, and the intention behind using such a method.

When choosing any method of contraception, one must always consider the moral aspect of it. Morality in Islam is a top priority and there can be no compromise. If the method brings harm to the wife or husband, it should not be used at all, whatsoever the method is. If the method of contraception being used caused permanent sterilisation for either husband or wife, Islam does not allow it; we must preserve our God-given capacity to procreate -none of us know our future circumstances. Harm also must not come to the conceived fetus. To abort after fertilisation is totally unlawful even if it is within the family, and even in the case of incest or rape. The rapist is to be condemned and penalised publicly so as to deter any person in the future from such a barbaric act.

If the intention is fear of becoming poor, Allah assured provision of wealth through the coming of the new child. (Qur’an 17:31). Even if the intention is fear of being already poor, Allah assured the family better provisions will come from heaven for the coming of a new child (Qur’an 6:151).

Finally, it is recommended that before choosing any method a couple should consult a Muslim physician who is practising the teachings of Islam and who has Taqwa. The couple also should consult a knowledgeable ‘Alim who is well versed in Islamic Shari’ah as well as with modern science and technology. After consulting all these people, the couple should pray a special salat to Allah requesting guidance. They pray either Salat Haajah or Salat Istikharah (requesting the best of the different methods). Allah will never leave the couple without guidance.

 TIPS FOR HUSBANDS

The following section is designed as a series of recommendations for any husband toward his wife. By following these tips and suggestions, the couple can live in peace harmony the rest of their life.

1. Remember that the girl you are to marry is your own wife.

2. A wife means your partner in everything

a. she is not your employee

b. she is not your servant

c. she is not a slave

d. she is your other half – (i.e.) each is complementary to each other

e. you might be 50:50 or 51:49

3. A wife means your sweetheart and your darling.

4. Without your wife you are nothing.

5. Your wife is for you sent to you from Allah (swt) as a gift. By appreciating the gift you are appreciating Allah (swt).

6. Your wife is the mother of your future children.

7. Your wife is still the daughter of her mother and father; this means you have to honour her parents as well as her brothers and sisters. You are also to honour her relatives as well.

8. You are to respect her parents in as much as you respect your own parents.

9. You have to recognise that, no matter how much your wife loves you, she will not love you as much as she loves her mother, father, brothers and sisters.

10. Remember! The more you give your wife of your money, your property and other accessories, the more she feels attached to you. Then the more she will protect you and your properties. The reverse is true.

11. Women have more in them of the following qualities:

Love… Affection… Sympathy… Concern… Sacrifice… Endurance… Patience… etc. Please try to deal with your wife with these qualities. She does expect these qualities from her husband.

12. The life of a husband and wife is a life of consultation (Shura). No one is the Boss. The true Boss is only Allah (swt).

13. Since many men die before women, you have to try your best to secure the future for your wife and your children. They are your assets and your investment after your death.

14. Train your wife to handle herself in your absence and after your death.

15. Secure the future of your family financially, morally, socially, culturally, and spiritually, otherwise they will be lost in the society. They will be a burden on the society as well, especially after your death.

16. Try to help your wife inside the house activities. She will feel happy and she will appreciate you more and more. Helping your wife at home will bring you together closer and closer. You will appreciate each other more, and you will increase your love to each other as well as respect.

17. If you find that your wife did not take care of the house properly, do not criticise and do not blame her. Take the initiative yourself and fix it in a friendly and polite way. Blaming her will create hate, animosity, and lack of respect. This leads to separation and finally divorce.

18. You have no right at all to abuse your wife physically, emotionally, psychologically, spiritually, or even verbally. The result is negative. You are to be blamed for that.

19. Never ever talk to your friends about your personal life inside your house; even if you are to go to a counselor.

20. Your relationship with your wife is to be kept between you and herself It is not the property of any person.

21. Let her know that you trust her. Then she will not hide anything from you.

22. Never ever spy on her. You have to let her know that Allah (swt) sees, knows, and records everything for you and for her. Nothing can be hidden from Allah (swt).

23. She will never look up to you as a role model, until you demonstrate that by action. The least of all is by being her Imam in your daily salat. Try to pray in Jama’ah as much as possible.

24. Try to recite Qur’an daily. You read she listens. Then, she reads and you listen.

25. Try to surprise her with gifts to her and to her parents.

26. Invite her parents as much as possible and serve them with respect.

27. If you have children from her try your best to help her in feeding and cleaning them. Moreover, try to play with them, and act as a babysitter for them.

28. The only way to have a wife to meet your hopes and aspirations is to make a special salat called salat Al-Hajah after midnight. You are to pray to Allah (swt) and to request Him while you are in a state of humbleness to bring you that type of a wife. It is He Who will secure you that wife, and even better than what you wished.

 TIPS FOR WIFE

The following section is planned with a series of recommendations for a wife to be. It is not easy to select a husband, but by following these tips, the new couple will live a happy and an enjoyable life.

1. Remember: When you are to marry a man make sure he is a practising Muslim. Not every Muslim is a Muslim.

2. If you think a person is good, try to find out about him directly and indirectly. It is not easy to find out directly. Therefore, follow the indirect methods.

3. Your parents and your family members are the best to find out about him.

4. If they invite him to their house, check about his kindness and generosity. See if he brought a gift to you or to the house. If he brings a gift to you, he is the wrong person. This means he is not interested with your family, he is after you personally.

5. If the time of Salat comes and he does not take the initiative to pray with your family, he is not the right person for you.

6. If he stays too long at your house, this means he is not sensitive to the privacy of the family.

7. Let your parents and members of your family find out about him in school, in business and in the mosque.

8. If he does not go to the Masjid for Friday Salat and for other activities, he is not the right person.

9. He should be able to give names of respected members of the community to recommend him.

10. If he works in Haram stores (liquor stores, video stores, etc) he is not the right person.

11. Your family should be able to find out about his own family social life. If he has come from a family where divorce is part of their life, he may not be the right person.

12. If he has come from a family that is known for child and wife abuse, he is not the right husband for you.

13. If he goes to parties (dancing, prom, singing and music), he is not the right person for you.

14. If he wants to take to you to a restaurant or other places to get to know you, he is the wrong one.

15. When he visits your parents’ house, if he tries to walk in the house with liberty from the living room to the family room, to the kitchen and other places, then he is definitely the wrong man for you.

16. If he wants to see your bedroom to assess you and to evaluate you, he is the most dangerous and the most liberal person.

17. If engagement takes place, and he feels that you became his own wife, he is wrong. He has no right even to shake hands with you.

18. If he wants to expose your beauty and decorate yourself, he is wrong. You should never listen to that request.

19. If he thinks that he is to marry you because of your degree, he is the wrong person. Then he may abuse you, and he will depend upon you to work and then he will take your money.

20. If he is to marry you because your family is rich, he is wrong.

21. If he thinks that he is to receive Mahr from you or your parents, he is wrong. This is a Hindu and a Jewish culture against the teachings of Islam.

22. If he has been married before, your family has to find out the reason(s) for the divorce. However, if he is a widower, there is not much problem in marrying him.

23. Your parent have the obligation to find out if he used to go with girls or is having any affairs with any girlfriend(s).

24. Sometimes it is good to marry someone from your cultural background and from the same country. It will reduce friction. This is not absolute. It is also good to marry from outside your parents’ country, but one has to make adjustments every now and then.

25. If you were born in USA, it would be easier for you to marry someone from your own country who is born here or has been raised here. To marry someone from overseas, he may find it difficult to adjust to the American way of life within the teachings of Islam.

26. Before making any decisions, perform Salat Istikhara before Fajr, and request Allah (swt) to help you to choose the right husband. Allah (swt) will never let you down.

27. If he wants to officiate the marriage only through the Masjid without the papers of the City Hall, do not accept at all.

28. If an Imam says that he will officiate only the Islamic Shari’ah marriage, he does not know the Islamic Laws. Do not believe him and do not accept his personal opinion.

29. An Islamic Shari’ah marriage is considered true if the Legislative body, the Executive Body, and the Legal Systems are all in the hands of a Muslim government. Then and only then, a marriage within the Masjid is considered and Islamic marriage.

30. Make sure your marriage is eternal, on this planet earth as well as in Heaven. Therefore, pray as much as possible that Allah (swt) brings you peace and happiness.

31. The person you have to look for should be a pious man. He should be humble, shy, generous, honest, sincere, trustworthy, and a loving personality.

CRITICISM OF HUSBANDS

The following is a partial list of complaints recorded by a group of husbands against their own wives. Some of these issues could be totally true others may be exaggerated. Some of these problems could be justified according to Islamic Shari’ah, while others may not be so. These issues are randomly selected without sequential importance.

1. My wife is lazy: She does not take care of the house. She sits and watches TV most of the day.

2. My wife does not pray five times a day, and she does not believe that she should attend Friday Salat.

3. My wife does not want to come to the Islamic Centre on Sundays so I have to come by myself

4. My wife does not read Qur’an and she does not enjoy reading it. She prefers to read all types of magazines.

5. She enjoys renting all types of movies

6. I have to prepare the food for myself and for her. She enjoys seeing me doing it. She does not enjoy cooking at all. She prefers to eat at restaurants.

7. My wife enjoys all varieties of parties: Nikah, Waleemah, ‘Aqeeqa, Mendi, etc. She even enjoys dancing in those parties in front of a mixed audience.

8. I was shocked when my wife pulled my hand and pushed me to dance with her in such parties. I was so ashamed of myself to have a wife like that.

9. I was so embarrassed to see my wife dancing with an American man in such parties. I wanted to kill myself at that moment.

10. My wife does not respect me! She shouts and yells at me quite often.

11. She accused me many times, as well as my parents, brothers and sisters.

12. We did not have children for sometime, therefore she puts the blame on me. When we checked with the doctor, we found out that she is impotent. However, she still puts the blame on me.

13. My wife uses the F-word regularly against me too. I do not know how to teach her to stop using this dirty word.

14. Anytime we get into an argument, she tells me that she wants to divorce me.

15. She defames me anytime I loose my job, and she says:

You are useless to me. I want to throw you out of the house.

16. I wrote her in our marriage contract a late Mahr (dowry) of $100,000.00 After a few months of our marriage, she wants to divorce me and to get the late Mahr! .….

7. We do not have any children, and we live in a small house, but she needs a maid to take care of the house.

18. I married my wife overseas and I brought her to the USA. I sponsored her and she got her residency. I bought her a car, and have a joint account, and a private account for her. I put her name with me in the house we bought. Now she wants to divorce me and be independent.

19. My wife left the small children at home and she left the house for few weeks. When I came home, I saw the children by themselves. Out of mercy, I did not call the police. I tried to take care of the children with the help of a maid.

20. As an Imam, I married my wife overseas. I brought her to the USA. I educated her to finish high school and college studies. I helped her get a job. For no reason, she called the police. They took me at night to a police station and I remained in custody till after midnight. I had to request my friend to bail me out. She put a restraint order on me not to come to the house or to the neighborhood. She divorced me. I had to build myself again from scratch.

21. My wife invites so many friends to our house without my permission, and without my knowledge. When I come home, I see so many people there whom I have never met before. I became a stranger in my own home.

22. My wife leaves the house and attends many parties without telling me. When I tried to ask her about anything, she says:

”It is not your business.”

23. After marital relationship, my wife does not want to take a complete shower. She does not want to disrupt the coiffeur of her hair!…

24. My wife beautifies herself outside the house, but inside the house she wears the worst clothing. She looks ugly, and she smells kitchen odor. If I request her to reverse the process, she shouts and yells at me! I do not know what to do!

25. I find my wife talking too much on the phone with men. I asked once what is going on, and she said it was none of my business; I have the right to talk to who ever I want. You have no right to ask me anything.

26. My wife wants a special account in her name other than the joint account. I asked her why and she said it was not my business, she knows what she wants.

27. My wife wants me to write the deed of the house in her name, otherwise she will divorce me.

28. My wife wants me to buy her a house in her country, and she also wants the house we now live in be under her name.

29. My wife does not want me to send money to my parents; However, she herself sends money from my income to her parents.

30. My wife refuses to cook, to do laundry, dishwashing, ironing, or other house activities. She says to me, “I am not your servant. I am not your slave. You have to do all these.”

31. My wife asked me to get a baby-sitter and a servant to take care of the house. She wants few thousand dollars in her personal account. She wants a car in her name. She wants me to pay her college education expenses; and above all she wants me to buy her a house in her country in her name. And much more! She shouts at me, insults me, and denies me my matrimonial relationship!? What a deal!…

32. Anytime we have an argument, my wife leaves the house and runs away without my knowledge. I have to locate her at her parents’ house or other places.

33. I take a shower daily; I put on cologne; I change my underwear daily; and still my wife says I stink and I smell bad!

34. Whenever we argue on any issue, she insults me, and says she is going away to marry her previous boyfriend. She says he is better than me! Ma-sha-Allah!

 CRITICISM OF WIVES

The following is a partial list of complaints that a counsellor may recognise when he/she is performing counselling. These complaints are from wives against their husbands.

1. Lack of respect

2. He insults me regularly and especially in front of the children.

3. He claims he is the Boss: When he talks, everyone has to listen to him.

4. When he makes decisions (without shura) everyone should obey him.

5. I have no right to fix the house or to organise it in a way that it will look beautiful.

6. He complains regularly about the foods he eats. He compares it with the ones that his mother used to cook.

7. I am busy in the house: cleaning, washing, doing laundry, ironing, cooking and he still complains. “What did you do today ? Nothing! …

8. He insults my family regularly.

9. He demands from me not to talk to my family or to visit them.

10. He says he is the husband: A woman has to obey her husband in everything. If a woman has to worship anyone other than Allah, she should worship her husband!

11. He comes late without informing me. I am waiting desperately for him, and he does not care to call me and let me know.

12. He goes by himself in the evening without telling me where about he is going, as if I am nothing in his eyes.

13. He did not include me in his financial accounts. We do not have a joint account, and I do not know anything about his income or expenses.

14. He does not give me any money. He says you should be lucky to live in a house, and have food to eat.!

15. He feels ashamed of me when I wear Hijab in public. Therefore, he does not allow me to be with him.

16. He does not pray five times a day. He does not pray Fajr Salat on time, and never did we pray Jama’ah at home. Religiously, I do not feel that he is a role model for me.

17. He does not read Qur’an daily, individually or collectively.

18. He lies to me and does not speak the truth. When he wanted to marry me he claimed he was studying medicine. After we married I found out he was a taxi cab driver.

19. He informed me before marriage that he was a virgin, and I found out after marriage that he had several girlfriends! I am ashamed of my husband. How in the world can a Muslim man have girlfriends!?

20. I found out recently that my husband is addicted to drinking!… Does he not know it is totally Haram!?

21. I realized that my husband is involved in lottery. Every week he spends some of his money buying tickets, and Al-Hamdullilah he never won at all.

22. I was able to find out that my husband is addicted to drugs. He prays but he does not want to admit that what he is doing is Haram!

23. I was shocked to know that my husband attends dancing parties. Can you imagine such parties are organised by Muslim families. Muslim men and women of all varieties are dancing together in public. Then the same people go to the Masjid!.. It is a shock to me. I cannot believe it.

24. I was doubly shocked when I found that some leaders of the Muslim Centres organised such parties. Don’t these men and women know it is totally Haram what they are doing?

25. I am totally shocked and ashamed when I found out that the Imam and Friday Khateeb brought his girlfriend to the Masjid on Friday Salat to show her, his position in the community as a religious leader.

26. Recently, I realised that my husband is involved in gambling. Most of his money is spent on gambling. He does not spend money on us.

27. My husband does not want to take a shower after matrimonial relationship. He does not believe in that.

28. I was shocked to know that the Imam of one Masjid does not take Ghussle, and Wudoo’ for his Friday Khutbahl Salat. He leads the Muslims while he is in a state of Janabah without Taharah and without Wudoo’. Amazing!

29. My husband stopped fasting. He never told me that. He pretended that he is fasting, but my little son discovered it.. Even my son was shocked and could not believe that.

30. My husband started eating pork. He feels it is Halal. It was Haram in the Arabian desert at that time.

31. The worst of all!. . . My husband is the Secretary of the Islamic Society. He used to shout at me, beat me, curse me, curse my family, and one day he stripped me naked in front of our teenage boys. He asked them to come and look at me in that shape!

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