سورة النساء   

Surah Name: An-Nisa' Meaning:The Women

  • Revealed at Madinah
  • The evolution of a society is based upon the determination of rights and duties. It is the responsibility of the ruler or the State to ensure compliance by the people and to punish the negligent. Since the duty of one is the right of another, any failure in the performance will surely lead to the extortion of people's rights. This is the basic concept of every social system though we may not like its particular manner of determination of duties. Islam far surpasses others in this regard. It begins by fixing the rights and duties of people. It reminds the State of its responsibilities. It goes still further and makes an individual stand before Allah-SWT , and motivates him to perform his duties to gain His-SWT Pleasure, He-SWT , Whose-SWT Providence he enjoys every moment and Who-SWT knows him inside out; Whose-SWT Nearness is his destination; Whose-SWT Pleasure is his aim of life; and Whose-SWT Grace is his ambition and desire. Abiding by the rules and regulations is one thing, and feelings of the Qalb is another. Spending on parents, wives, children and orphans is a noble act; but emotions, such as respect, love, kindness, cannot be measured by any scale, nor can be commanded. Therefore, the reward for such noble feelings will be Allah-SWT's Pleasure. Since this Surah deals especially with the rights of women, it has been named An-Nisa'
  • Total Number of Rukū / Sections 24
  • Total Number of Āyāt / Parts 176
  • Sūrah / Chapter number 4
  • Rukū / Section 19 contains Āyāt / Parts 8
  • Siparah/ Volume 4, 5 & 6


وَيَسْتَفْتُونَكَ فِي النِّسَاء قُلِ اللّهُ يُفْتِيكُمْ فِيهِنَّ وَمَا يُتْلَى عَلَيْكُمْ فِي الْكِتَابِ فِي يَتَامَى النِّسَاء الَّلاتِي لاَ تُؤْتُونَهُنَّ مَا كُتِبَ لَهُنَّ وَتَرْغَبُونَ أَن تَنكِحُوهُنَّ وَالْمُسْتَضْعَفِينَ مِنَ الْوِلْدَانِ وَأَن تَقُومُواْ لِلْيَتَامَى بِالْقِسْطِ وَمَا تَفْعَلُواْ مِنْ خَيْرٍ فَإِنَّ اللّهَ كَانَ بِهِ عَلِيمًا

Wayastaftoonaka fee a(l)nnisai quli Allahu yufteekum feehinna wama yutlaAAalaykum fee alkitabi fee yatama a(l)nnisai allatee la tutoonahunna ma kutiba lahunna watarghaboona an tankihoohunna wa(a)lmustadAAafeena mina alwildani waan taqoomoo lilyatama bi(a)lqisti wama tafAAaloo min khayrin fainna Allaha kana bihi AAaleema(n)

And they ask your decree concerning women. Say you-SW  : Allaah-SWT decrees to you concerning them and so do the Revelations that have been recited to you in the Book concerning the orphan women to whom you do not give what is prescribed for them and yet desire that you will wed them, and concerning the oppressed children, and concerning this that you will deal with the orphans in equity, and whatsoever good you do, then verily Allaah-SWT is ever Aware of it.


وَإِنِ امْرَأَةٌ خَافَتْ مِن بَعْلِهَا نُشُوزًا أَوْ إِعْرَاضًا فَلاَ جُنَاْحَ عَلَيْهِمَا أَن يُصْلِحَا بَيْنَهُمَا صُلْحًا وَالصُّلْحُ خَيْرٌ وَأُحْضِرَتِ الأَنفُسُ الشُّحَّ وَإِن تُحْسِنُواْ وَتَتَّقُواْ فَإِنَّ اللّهَ كَانَ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ خَبِيرًا

Waini imraatun khafat min baAAliha nushoozan aw iAAradan fala junaha AAalayhima an yusliha baynahuma sulhan wa(al)ssulhu khayrun waohdirati alanfusu a(l)shshuhha wain tuhsinoo watattaqoo fainna Allaha kana bima taAAmaloona khabeera(n)

And if a woman apprehends refractoriness or estrangement from her husband, it shall be no blame on the couple if they effect between them reconciliation, and reconciliation is always good. And souls are engrained with greed. And if you act kindly and fear Him-SWT , then verily Allaah-SWT is ever Aware of what you do.


وَلَن تَسْتَطِيعُواْ أَن تَعْدِلُواْ بَيْنَ النِّسَاء وَلَوْ حَرَصْتُمْ فَلاَ تَمِيلُواْ كُلَّ الْمَيْلِ فَتَذَرُوهَا كَالْمُعَلَّقَةِ وَإِن تُصْلِحُواْ وَتَتَّقُواْ فَإِنَّ اللّهَ كَانَ غَفُورًا رَّحِيمًا

Walan tastateeAAoo an taAAdiloo bayna a(l)nnisai walaw harastum fala tameeloo kulla almayli fatatharooha ka(a)lmuAAallaqati wain tuslihoo watattaqoo fainna Allaha kana ghafooran raheema(n)

And you are not able to deal equitably between wives, even though you long to do so; but incline not an extreme inclining, so that you leave her as she were suspended. And if you effect reconciliation and fear Allah-SWT, then Allaah-SWT is ever Forgiving, Merciful.


وَإِن يَتَفَرَّقَا يُغْنِ اللّهُ كُلاًّ مِّن سَعَتِهِ وَكَانَ اللّهُ وَاسِعًا حَكِيمًا

Wain yatafarraqa yughni Allahu kullan min saAAatihi wakana Allahu wasiAAanhakeema(n)

And if the couple must separate, Allaah-SWT shall enrich each of them of His-SWT bounty; and Allaah-SWT is ever Bountiful, Wise.


وَللّهِ مَا فِي السَّمَاوَاتِ وَمَا فِي الأَرْضِ وَلَقَدْ وَصَّيْنَا الَّذِينَ أُوتُواْ الْكِتَابَ مِن قَبْلِكُمْ وَإِيَّاكُمْ أَنِ اتَّقُواْ اللّهَ وَإِن تَكْفُرُواْ فَإِنَّ لِلّهِ مَا فِي السَّمَاوَاتِ وَمَا فِي الأَرْضِ وَكَانَ اللّهُ غَنِيًّا حَمِيدًا

Walillahi ma fee a(l)ssamawati wama fee alardi walaqad wassayna allatheena ootoo alkitaba min qablikum waiyyakum ani ittaqoo Allaha wain takfuroo fainna lillahi mafee a(l)ssamawati wama fee alardi wakana Allahu ghaniyyan hameeda(n)

And Allah-SWT's is whatsoever is in the heavens and whatsoever is in the earth. And assuredly We-SWT enjoined those who were given the Book before you and yourselves: fear Allah-SWT, and if you disbelieve, then Allah-SWT's is whatsoever is in the heavens and whatsoever is in the earth and Allaah-SWT is ever Self-Sufficient, Praiseworthy.


وَلِلّهِ مَا فِي السَّمَاوَاتِ وَمَا فِي الأَرْضِ وَكَفَى بِاللّهِ وَكِيلاً

Walillahi ma fee a(l)ssamawati wama fee alardi wakafa bi(A)llahi wakeela(n)

And Allah-SWT's is whatsoever is in the heavens and whatsoever is in the earth, and suffices Allaah-SWT as a Champion.


إِن يَشَأْ يُذْهِبْكُمْ أَيُّهَا النَّاسُ وَيَأْتِ بِآخَرِينَ وَكَانَ اللّهُ عَلَى ذَلِكَ قَدِيرًا

In yasha yuthhibkum ayyuha a(l)nnasu wayati biakhareena wakana Allahu AAalathalika qadeera(n)

If He-SWT will, He-SWT can take you away, O’ mankind! And bring forward others. And Allaah-SWT is ever Potent over that.


مَّن كَانَ يُرِيدُ ثَوَابَ الدُّنْيَا فَعِندَ اللّهِ ثَوَابُ الدُّنْيَا وَالآخِرَةِ وَكَانَ اللّهُ سَمِيعًا بَصِيرًا

Man kana yureedu thawaba a(l)ddunya faAAinda Allahi thawabu a(l)ddunyawa(a)lakhirati wakana Allahu sameeAAan baseera(n)

He who seeks the reward of this world, with Allaah-SWT is the reward of this world and the Hereafter, and Allaah-SWT is ever Hearing, Seeing.


In The Name of Allah-SWT the Most Gracious, The Most Merciful

Again, the discussion reverts to the actual subject of the rights of women. Before the advent of Islam, women were not even considered as humans. . Islam gave her the right to inherit and actually made her a shareholder in the heritage, whereas the Arabs used to treat women as a part of heritage and distributed them amongst the heirs. Islam redeemed them from the depths of humiliation and raised them to a respectable status. So some classes of the society wanted an explanation, for it was hard for them to conceive how Islam could declare woman as a shareholder in heritage like man? They thought maybe this order was temporary, or for a specific group of people as it was very difficult for them to even imagine such a possibility. Therefore, the Holy Prophet-SW was asked to tell those who still inquired about women, that Allah gives His-SWT verdict about them. A verdict is that decisive answer to a question which carries the final judgment, and whatever has been revealed is the final word. A woman too is a member of the human race who is also entrusted with responsibilities just as a man also has responsibilities. Similarly just as the man enjoys his rights, a woman too has rights. However, these rights and duties differ slightly in nature. Responsibilities have been assigned to them keeping in view their physical structure and their capabilities to manage the affairs of life; consequently, their rights differ in the same degree.


A Social Malpractice

In those days people used to marry orphan girls but did not bother to pay their obligatory rights such as Mehr money or to give any status to such wives. Most married these girls for their wealth and if their appearance did not appeal them, they were completely neglected. Or else if the reason behind the marriage was beauty then many of their other rights were usurped. Similarly in the case of orphan children, people would become their guardians but would deprive them of their wealth under the cover of raising them, and would also take service from them. Allah-SWT disapproves of all such malpractices and customs and commands to establish justice in dealing with the down trodden and the orphans. And whatever good one does Allah-SWT is well Aware of it.


Tips for a Pleasant Domestic Life

If a woman is fed up with the belligerence of her husband, or she feels that her husband is not giving her due attention as if he no longer desires her, then it is better for both to make peace on certain conditions. Rather it is commendable that they should settle their rifts mutually. If the husband is at fault, he should correct himself and if the wife is being unreasonable, she should mend her ways. Each one should forgo some of their own rights and forgive the other. Whatever is done, it is always better to make peace, even if it is achieved by sacrificing a few minor rights. Compromise improves the lives of the individual as well as the entire nation, whereas wars and unrest ruin them. Personal differences and domestic feuds often embitter the lives of the children. Similarly when tribes and families fight they move towards destruction. When countries are threatened by war, millions of people lose their peace. To avert such disaster, it is wise to forgo some of the rights. On a smaller scale, saving even a single household from breaking up is a big achievement. Compromises are often reached when a party offers to surrender a few rights, while in human beings generally the desire to acquire something works up to avarice. But if they make righteousness and piety as second nature, all these problems can be solved. As every problem has a solution provided people are sincere and God fearing. And whatever is done to please Allah-SWT never goes in vain, as Allah is Aware of the deeds of people.


Now another issue concerning polygamy must be clarified; that the subsequent marriages which are allowed upto four are conditional to the husband's ability to treat them with justice. If it is not possible to maintain justice amongst the wives, it is better to have one wife. The term justice is further explained to be applying to all those affairs which are in man's control, such as respect, clothing, food, housing, marital relation etc. but as far as the feelings of the heart are concerned, they are beyond one's control, as one cannot force the heart to love everyone equally and it is not possible even if one wants to. But what one can do is not to lean only towards one, leaving the other suspended in a state where she can neither be called married because she does not get her due rights, nor can she be termed as a spinster for she is bound by the wedlock after all. Therefore, it is the best policy to make peace within the first marriage even if it involves some temporary difficulties. Be straight with Allah-SWT as He-SWT is the Most Merciful.


If inspite of all these efforts it is impossible to live together then the woman can also demand for separation, which an Islamic Court or a Qazi (Islamic Judge) can grant her after reviewing the situation. A man has the right to divorce, but both husband and wife should not even think that one of them is indispensable for the other. Allah-SWT by His-SWT Grace, will create opportunities for them and they will both lead a normal life, as Allah-SWT has abundance for all and He-SWT is the Greatest Planner too.


All that is between the heavens and the earth, that which is in human knowledge as well as that which is beyond it belongs to Allah-SWT . Living in this world is nothing but a trial for people. Islam is a religion of humanity. Allah-SWT Commanded those who were given the Books before you, as He-SWT Commands you to keep your dealings with Him-SWT straight and to obey Him-SWT with sincere devotion. Even if someone disobeys Allah, it does not affect His-SWT Greatness in any way, as the entire creations within the universe are His-SWT slaves, yet He-SWT is not dependent on anyone for any service. He-SWT is Independent under all circumstances and is the Provider. Allah-SWT is worthy of all praise and Owner of magnificent qualities. All that is within the universe is not only owned by Him-SWT but also created by Him-SWT ; and He-SWT Alone is the supporter for everyone for all times to come and the focus of all hopes; and He-SWT is Omnipotent. If He-SWT wishes He-SWT can annihilate you and make others reside in your cities, in your place. He-SWT is certainly capable of doing so. These are historical facts that nations, kingdoms and countries, have flourished and have been destroyed. Allah-SWT is all Powerful and does whatever pleases Him-SWT . If someone seeks only worldly pleasures, then those too are in Allah-SWT ’s control; which only He-SWT can give and the Hereafter also is in His Power, and He may grant both the Hereafter and the world to the one who seeks the Hereafter. The one who is only after this worldly life, from where can he hope to attain anything by defying Allah-SWT ? Allah-SWT Hears and Sees everything, therefore, the one striving for eternal success need not given up this world, but instead should adopt those means of earning worldly gains which have been permitted by Allah-SWT and His-SWT Prophet"-SW . By doing so he wins success in the Hereafter as a reward.