Men are overseers over women ... Verity Allah-SWT is ever Lofty,Grand
What should be the anatomy of matrimonial relationships and how should a household be run? Every system, organization or a government has a leader, who may be called a ruler or by any other such title. In a household, man will be the ruler and the woman his deputy or associate, who would advise him on household affairs while following his instruction. This is not a despotic or tyrannical domination granted to man, but the leadership to enforce rules that have been mutually agreed upon for the betterment and upbringing of the children. He shall be supported by his wife, and with her support, he will strive for the welfare of his family. Every system needs a person who should be responsible for its smooth running and has the final word and the authority to enforce his decision. It is thus that every country has a head or a king. The word Qawwam has been rightfully defined as Amir. The difference between an Amir and a king is that the former works with mutual consultations for the betterment of the subjects while the latter works to prolong his rule and makes decisions and enforces them only to satisfy his personal interests. Therefore, a man is called Amir and not ruler, so that women should not feel bad. Logically, too, it is more appropriate that a man should be the head of the family rather than women or children. The philosophy behind this is mentioned in the following Ayah "Allaah-SWT has made one of them to excel the other.
It is His-SWT will that He-SWT has privileged some of his creations more than the others. This rule of creation is universally evident; may it be amongst fruits, grains, pieces of land, animals or in gender. Even in the human body the heart is superior to the other organs. Similarly, man has been granted a kind of superiority over woman by virtue of creation. The physical structure of a man is stronger and his duties are to provide for, protect and up bring his family. The duties of the woman are to safeguard the honour and wealth of the husband and to take care of the household and the children. Another reason explained for conferring this superiority is: 'and because they spend of their property’ i.e. the sole responsibility of providing for the family lies on the man. He should earn and spend his money on the family. Therefore, the natural and more appropriate structure of the household is that the husband should earn lawfully and watch the affairs of his household as a leader: whereas the wife should guard the family honour and the children. It clearly indicates that ruling with mere might and force is not the right thing, one must also have the capability in order to be a leader. It is also a religious obligation to remove inept rulers, provided such an action is driven by sincerity of purpose and not selfish motives.
It is not mandatory that all men are superior to all women without exception, but it is a general rule. As far as individuals are concerned, it is quite possible that a woman may excel man in education, politics and leadership. In such a situation a woman can even become the head of State, let alone household, but it is not the general rule. In fact, it is in the nature of woman that she wants to live in protection, which is provided by man. In an Islamic society, a woman is protected and cared for by her father from her childhood till her marriage. After marriage, her husband provides for her entire needs. Her physical structure, her household duties and responsibilities, and her unique temperament do not allow her to be dragged into offices, trading centers or to run after other sources of income to earn a livelihood. Moreover, she has been assigned the great and important task of the continuance of human race. This task is agreeable to her physical as well as temperamental constitution. Besides, a man cannot perform this task properly, as it is not suitable for his temperament. Therefore, Allah-SWT has distributed responsibilities between both the sexes; whoever performs these duties sincerely and carefully, be it man or woman, shall be rewarded.
The duties of man and woman are different; their requirements are different; but they are both entrusted with responsibilities and shall be accountable to Allah-SWT . A virtuous wife is the one who obeys her husband and accepts his dominance, which is necessary for her own protection and that of the household. Such dominance is not tyrannical but is defined by Allah-SWT for her welfare. She should be a custodian of her husband's wealth and honour in his absence too, just like she would act in his presence. When a woman resolves with sincerity in her heart to do so. Allah-SWT gives her His-SWT Protection and makes it easy for her to carry out extremely difficult duties of bringing up the children, safeguarding the honour and wealth and managing the family affairs. It is, however, quite possible that some foolish women may not be able to perform their duties well. In such a situation, the husband must try to talk to her gently and advise her. If she does not mend her ways, she should be separated in bed, until she improves her conduct. The Holy Prophet-SW has said that she should be made to sleep in another room, so that this temporary separation may help to avert a permanent separation from her husband. If they still do not submit and improve, beating is allowed, and according to Hadith, she should not be hit so hard that her body gets bruised or any bones are fractured. It is strictly forbidden to hit her on the face. Praise be to Allah-SWT ! This mild beating can be simply called a form of displeasure or an expression of annoyance. Furthermore, another Hadith mentions that noble men shall not do even this. i.e. they will never heat up their wives to correct them. If the wife mends her ways, do not remind her of her past follies, nor be sarcastic, nor show annoyance. Rather, be kind and try to ignore her past mistakes and forgive her wholeheartedly. Allaah-SWT has given man superiority over woman, but in reality all superiority is for Allah-SWT , and His-SWT Greatness and Magnanimity are unfathomable. He-SWT has assigned duties to each of his creations, so that the affairs of the universe run smoothly.
And if you fear a break between the pair ...Allah-SWT is ever Knowing, Aware
A situation may arise whereby things get out of hand and. whether due to the husband's fault or because of the wife's stubbornness, the chances of resolving the dispute domestically become grim. In such a ease instead of blaming one another both should resort to the intervention of their elders. The rulers, or a group of Muslims with authority, should appoint an arbiter from each side i.e. one from each family. The arbiters must have the capability and authority to make decisions. The word Hakam itself describes a person of such caliber if the power to make decision is lacking, the word Hakam does not fit here. The arbiters should be sincere, honest and knowledgeable who can understand the situation, discuss and give their decision. Basically the appointment of these arbiters is aimed at the facilitation of reconciliation.If they cannot achieve this, the matter will be taken to the court, which involves many difficulties and problems. It will be expensive as well as defaming for the family since the internal affairs of the family will be made public. It may also lead to false accusations and King, which is detrimental for the Hereafter, and brings infamy and slander to the family’s name in this world. Therefore, if the arbiters sincerely resolve to help in the reconciliation of the estranged couple, Allah--SWT will help them and create feelings of love and unity in the spouse’s hearts.
In this way not only the entity but also the wealth, character and virtue of the family will be saved. If both sides authorize these arbiters to lake the decision on their behalf; the arbiters have the full power to take any decision. Now if they agree upon divorce or any form of Khull'a (separation proceedings initiated by the wife) their decision shall be enforced. The Muslim jurists have derived from this Ayah that, in addition to marital feuds, arbiters can he appointed for all other disputes too: in fact it is more appropriate to opt for arbitration rather than resorting to courts. Hadhrat Umar Faruq-RAU recommends that arbitration should be resorted to instead of courts for decisions since the former does not malign the hearts. Although the court verdicts settle the matter, yet they create resentments in the hearts.
The arbiters must work with sincerity. Since Allah-SWT is All-Knowing and Aware. Just as the matters concerning people are presented before them, so are then own hearts and actions exposed to Allah--SWT So if their intentions are noble, matters are resolved amicably with Allah--SWT's help.
And Worship Allah-SWT ... a vile companion has he
As far as fulfillment of duties is concerned, the foremost are those, which we owe to Allah-SWT . It is His-SWT right that we worship Him-SWT and do not associate partners with Him-SWT . In His-SWT Unity or Attributes. In Islam, faith is the foundation of reformation of all affairs of life. So long as the Greatness of Allaah-SWT is not embedded in the hearts of people, making them believe in the Omnipresence of Allah-SWT and His-SWT constant vigilance over their affairs, and as long as all their hopes are not associated with Him-SWT alone, no governmental force and no cultural or social pressure can compel them to reform themselves. It is very easy to escape from such pressures. It is only the faith in Allah-SWT , based on the belief of His-SWT Oneness, that worship becomes a source of strengthening the faith and attaining spiritual progress. Thus the problems of only those people shall be resolved, whether through the government or arbitration at the family level, who are conscious of their duties towards Allah-SWT . The main reason that today mighty governments have failed to enforce peace and prevent atrocities prevalent over many parts of the world is that they have forgotten their Creator, be it America or Russia, peace and harmony do not exist.
After the rights of Allah-SWT as our Creator, the rights of parents, who are responsible of our procreation, are the most important. Parents are responsible for the upbringing and training of the children. But how can goodness be expected for others, from a person, who is oblivious of even his duties towards Allah-SWT ? However, if one has faith in Allah-SWT , he or she must treat the parents with grace and kindness. Here the topic of discussion is not the rights of the parents, but the treatment they are entitled to receive. It means that they must be looked after, their needs must be met. And one must serve them with sincerity as much as one can, even if the parents had failed to fulfill the rights of their children. To please the parents, one must look after even their friends. But if they tell the children to disobey Allah-SWT , they must not be obeyed. However, they should still be respected One must avoid saying anything, which can hurt their feelings. Efforts to please them shall be duly rewarded by Allah-SWT . The excellence of humanity lies in the fulfillment of one's duties towards Allah-SWT . After that, the rights of parents, relatives, orphans, needy, neighbors. Fellow travelers and even servants must be sincerely understood and given to them. The Holy Prophet-SW said that the person who does not treat his parents well faces hardships in this world. The discussion about parents expands to include other relations. Close relatives, too must be treated with kindness, and help must be extended to them, as much as possible, both financially and emotionally lose interaction must be kept with relatives. A courteous behavior to others is often coupled with expectations to be thought of highly by them But this is a misconception and is negated here. In fact, good treatment to relatives is enjoined by Allaah-SWT and should be extended in compliance with His-SWT Commands Naturally, the reward too must be expected from Him-SWT .
The relatives too must comply with Allah-SWT's Commands and if they ignore them, they shall be accountable for their own deeds. Hadhrat Abu Bakr Siddiq-RAU supported a poor relative who also got involved in the conspiracy of accusing Hadhrat 'Ayeshah Siddiq-RAU whose innocence was declared by Allaah-SWT Himself in the Quran. Hadhrat Abu Bakr Siddiq-RAU felt offended and withdrew his support. The Holy Prophet-SW told him not to do so. As whatever his relative did was his personal conduct for which he should repent before Allah, but Hadhrat Abu Bakr Siddiq-RAU: was helping him as a matter of duty and for winning Allah-SWT's Pleasure.
People with no relatives or with such relatives who cannot afford to help them, have not been deprived of their right to be treated kindly. These people are the orphans and the poor Allaah-SWT has reminded the rich of their duty towards the deserving people Moreover, neighbours should also be treated kindly. Many scholars have interpreted this Ayah. According to some, Jar-e-zil qurba means next-door neighbours and Jur-e zil Junube means people living in the neighbourhood. According to others, the former means a neighbour who is also a relative, and the latter is just a neighbour. Some scholars agree that the first type is a Muslim neighbour. Although all these interpretations can be acceptable, yet the scholars agree on the fact that a neighbour, whether a Muslim or a non-Muslim, relative or not. Next door or distant, must be looked after and helped, however, there will be a difference in their status as reported by Ibn-e Kathir: the Holy Prophet-SW has said that there are some neighbours who have one right, some have two and some three. The neighbour with a single right is a non-Muslim and his sole right is of being a neighbour. A Muslim neighbour has two rights, one for being a Muslim and the second for being a neighbour The one with three rights is a Muslim relative neighbour. After this, Sahib-e-bil-Janb is discussed i.e. those people who are travelling together, or who often sit together, or according to Ruh al-Ma’ani, even those who are colleagues and work in the same office.
All these must he treated kindly even if the period of interaction is very less and whether they are Muslims, non Muslim, relatives or strangers. Nothing must be said or gestured which might hurt their feelings. No inconvenience should be caused to them, for example smoking and puffing, so as to make the person sitting next to you miserable or sitting in a manner to occupy most of the space of the fellow passenger. Care must be taken lo convenience and facilitate those interacting with you.
Allah-SWT Commands that a wayfarer, even if a stranger or a non-Muslim, must be treated well and helped on the basis of humanity. It is enjoined that the servants, maids and slaves, all deserve to be treated kindly. They must be provided proper food and clothing and their self-respect and honour must not he hurt. They should not be over-burdened with work beyond their capacity . The stipulated salary must be paid to them on time. Although literally this Ayah addresses the treatment of slaves and bondswomen, yet in the light of the sayings of the Holy Prophet-SW and by consensus of the Ummah,,it includes all the servants and maids. Thus a Muslim must be an embodiment of goodness and nobility. So that not only Muslims, but non-Muslims too benefit from his virtues. The latter do not have to fear any oppression from the former. Today's material world is achingly deprived of all these human virtues.
It is declared that Allah-SWT resents those who are proud and boastful. In short whoever fails to fulfill the aforesaid duties, ill treats the parents, the relatives or the poor and hapless or is a source of trouble for the co-traveler or the colleagues or the servants, is an arrogant person. Such a person wants the rest to feel that they are inferior to him. Remember. Allah-SWT dislikes such people who want to let others down, and who are niggardly in spending on others. They do not give to others what is rightful to be spent on them. They are the people who try to hide what Allah-SWT has blessed them with and influence other people to do the same. Thus, they try to ensure that others may not become equal to them by attaining knowledge or wealth.
This Ayah was revealed in relevance to the habits of the Jews of Madinah. But it generally includes all those who act similarly. The Jews of Madinah were extremely arrogant, they did not want the poor community to improve financially and made all efforts to achieve this goal the same attitude prevailed in matters concerning knowledge, too they would not reveal the knowledge of the Divine Books just to maintain their supremacy over others. In today's world also, there are landlords, scholars and rulers who act in ways similar to those Jews. These are the ones who usurp the wealth of others, or become a barrier to the attainment of knowledge by others. The landlords of our country send their children for higher studies to Oxford, but do not allow the establishment of even a primary school for the children of the lower class in the areas under their influence. The main reason of this
is arrogance and self-praise, lethal enough to lake a person step by step towards infidelity, and Allah-SWT has promised a shameful doom for the infidels. Another characteristic of such people is that when they do spend on others they spend only for self aggrandizement and fame.
It is often seen that if parents are needy and sick, they are not looked after, but when they die, expensive rituals are performed even at the cost of" borrowing, just to show off to people and impress them. The person who acts only to be admired by the people, rather than acting in the way of Allah-SWT , has taken Satan for a companion and advisor; and indeed Satan is an evil companion, he will always guide his followers to the path leading to notoriety and Allah-SWT's Wrath in both the worlds.
And what harm would befall them ... to hide any discourse from Allah-SWT
Had they believed in Allah-SWT and the Hereafter, and spent the wealth given to them by Allah-SWT according to His-SWT Commands, they would not have lost anything. In fact the faith in Allah-SWT is a blessing which facilitates one's life and provides such firm support, which makes a person indifferent to and independent of any other support. The absolute belief in the hereafter is the foundation stone of social reformation. If the faith in Allah-SWT and belief in the Hereafter is missing, the life becomes a picture of Hell. This can be witnessed in the Western society, where despite unlimited State resources and best efforts, crimes cannot be controlled. It is only the power of faith that deters a person from sin even when none is watching him. Therefore, had the people been blessed with faith, it would have made things easier for them. Wealth, knowledge and power, whether physical or social, are all blessed by Allah-SWT : and had they been put to use in accordance with Allah-SWT's Commands to win His-SWT Pleasure, these people would have qualified for immense rewards in return for very little efforts.
The fact is that Allah-SWT is well Aware of His-SWT people, their thoughts and their actions. Nothing is hidden from Him-SWT . Islam is a combination of precepts and practices. The former without practical application is futile. Similarly actions are fruitless if not based on sound precepts. Hence no human activity, which is without faith in Allah-SWT and falls outside the limits of His-SWT obedience, can produce positive results. Islam is indispensable for mankind, since the way Allah-SWT teaches to do things is certainly the correct and the easiest way. If any other course of action is adopted, it is always more difficult, even if it temporarily serves the purpose, it can never produce the desirable results. Islam is another name for a comfortable, honourable and a wholesome life, which facilitates death and life after death. How foolish are those who do not believe! Allah-SWT is All-Knowing, so they shall not be able to hide anything from Him-SWT is for punishing the people. Allah-SWT is too Gracious and Magnificent to inflict injustice on anyone. He-SWT has created man with a conscience that can discriminate between right and wrong and has taught this discrimination too. Whenever and wherever it was needed, Allah-SWT sent His-SWT Prophets-AS to serve this purpose, He-SWT granted human beings the power to choose the path they desire to follow. Now if a person, by his own choice, opts for Allah-SWT's Wrath, this is a matter of his own choice and opinion. Otherwise Allah-SWT is so Generous that He-SWT punishes in proportion to the error, but rewards the noble deeds manifold. It is said that such deeds will be rewarded at least ten times multiplied; some of them two million times and some will be rewarded in proportions beyond imagination.
One important thing to remember is that He-SWT will not punish people in the light of His-SWT Knowledge alone, but shall ask the Prophets-AS to testify for their people. This will be done in two ways. Firstly, Prophets-AS will bear witness to the fact that their followers had received the Message of Allah-SWT ; some had accepted while others had refused. Even at that time the non-believers would deny the evidence, upon which the Prophets-AS shall be asked as to who would certify their word. They shall submit, "O Allah-SWT ! Let the followers of Prophet Muhammad-SW certify." And it shall so happen. Then the non-believers will say. "These people never saw our times, how do they know?" The followers of Holy Prophet-SW will reply: “Allah-SWT ! We have read all these events in Your-SWT Revelation that is the Quran." The Holy Prophet-SW shall verify: "These people had accepted my teachings and obeyed me. It was through me that Your-SWT Revelations had reached them, in which You-SWT have declared my Ummah as the best and balanced nation. Thus the falsehood of the non-believers will be exposed and they will accept their folly and be apologetic. A second form of verification will be about our declaration of Islam: whether our actions and deeds were in accordance with the teachings of the Holy Prophet-SW or were they according to our concocted rituals? Just like the way Prophet "Isa-AS shall be questioned. "Did you ask your people to take you and your mother as Gods?" And he shall answer: "I only told them what You-SWT had ordered me. The rest is their own invention!" Thus all those actions and deeds, which people deem reward-worthy will only be accepted after endorsement and verification by the respective Prophets-AS. Therefore, taking baseless rituals, which consume time, engrave and wealth, for religion is indeed foolish. Instead of earning a reward in the Hereafter, they in fact invite a humiliating doom. It would indeed be tragic.
There are many reports that the Holy Prophet-SW is presented with the deeds of his followers, and he either certifies them or rejects them. The same verification shall be obtained on the Day of Judgement, and the non-believers would wish to be destroyed or to disappear without leasing a trace, to escape the Reckoning and Allah-SWT's Wrath. But not only would they be unable to hide themselves, but also their deeds, no matter how trivial Disbelief itself is nothing except trouble, but those who lake rituals as part of religion shall be in no better state. Therefore, before undertaking any task, one must make sure that it does not clash with the teachings of the Holy Prophet-SW .All such matters, which are not endorsed by him must not be considered to be part of religion. Here we have a very strong proof of the finality of his Prophethood. That there will be no Prophet-AS after him-SW, because his-SW Ummah shall be summoned to verify the preceding nations, and he-SW shall be asked to testify for everyone. Therefore, any claim of Prophethood after the Holy Prophet-SW is nothing but absolute fabrication.