Wed 23 Jm2 1435 - 23 April 2014
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The Prophet’s dream about marrying ‘Aa’ishah

In reply to a question regarding marriage of prophet Mohammad ( ), I was given to understand that prophet Mohammad had a dream in which he saw that he got married with hazrat Aisah who was only 6-7 year old at that time. Consequently, he discussed this with hazrat Aisha. In other word this marriage was arranged by Allah himself. If so, we have a logical answer to satisfy critics that it was ordered by Allah. However, in support of that there must be an athentic hadith or a verse in the Qur'an.
I will appreciate if you can provide me info regarding this issue.

Praise be to Allaah.

The hadeeth to which you refer was reported by Imaam al-Bukhaari (may Allaah have mercy on him) in his Saheeh from ‘Aa’ishah (may Allaah be pleased with her), who said that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said to her: “You were shown to me twice in a dream. I saw you in a piece of silk (i.e., he saw her image on a piece of silk, or he saw her wearing a silken garment). I was told, ‘This is your wife, so unveil her,’ and it was you. I said: if this dream is from Allaah then it will come to pass.’” (Saheeh al-Bukhaari, 3606).

In his commentary on this hadeeth, Ibn Hajar (may Allaah have mercy on him) said: “This dream came after his mission had started, and it was a wahy (revelation) that had implications in real life. (Its implication was that he did indeed marry her later on). His words ‘and it was you’ indicate that he had seen her before and knew what she looked like.” (See Fath al-Baari)

There is nothing in the hadeeth to indicate that his marriage to ‘Aa’ishah was as a result of that dream. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) asked her father for her hand in marriage, and her father Abu Bakr gave her in marriage, in the usual fashion, as is indicated in the following hadeeth:

“ ‘Urwah reported that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) asked Abu Bakr for ‘Aa’ishah’s hand in marriage, and Abu Bakr said to him: ‘But I am your brother.’ He said: ‘You are my brother according to the religion and Book of Allaah (i.e., my brother in Islam), and she is permissible for me (to marry).” (Bukhaari, 4691).

In his commentary Ibn Hajar (may Allaah have mercy on him) said: “Ibn Abi ‘Aasim reported via Yahyaa ibn ‘Abd al-Rahmaan ibn Haatib from ‘Aa’ishah that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) sent Khawlah bint Hakeem to Abu Bakr to ask for ‘Aa’ishah’s hand in marriage. Abu Bakr asked her, ‘Is she right for him? Because she is the daughter of my brother.’ Khawlah went back and mentioned this to the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him). He told her: ‘Go back and tell him: “You are my brother in Islam, and your daughter is right for me.”’ She went back to Abu Bakr and told him, and he said: ‘Call the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him).’ So he came and the marriage was performed.”

The phrase “You are my brother according to the religion and Book of Allaah (i.e., my brother in Islam)” was referring to the aayah (interpretation of the meaning): “The believers are nothing else than brothers (in Islamic religion)…” [al-Hujuraat 49:10] and other similar aayaat. The phrase “she is permissible for me (to marry)” means it is permissible to marry her even though she is the brother’s daughter, because the kind of brotherhood that would prevent such a marriage is the brotherhood of descent (same parent) or of radaa’ah (by being breastfed in infancy by the same woman), not the brotherhood of faith.

As regards the woman to whom the Prophet’s marriage was arranged in heaven, as it were, by Allaah, and not in the customary fashion, this was Zaynab bint Jahsh (may Allaah be pleased with her), as is indicated by the hadeeth of Anas (may Allaah be pleased with him), who said: “Zaynab used to boast (to her co-wives) about how she had got married to the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), saying: ‘Your families arranged your marriages but Allaah arranged my marriage from above the seven heavens.’” (al-Bukhaari, 6870). No other wife except Zaynab was married to the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) in such a unique fashion; ‘Aa’ishah’s marriage was arranged as described in the reports quoted above. May Allaah reward you with good for your question. And Allaah knows best.

Islam Q&A
Sheikh Muhammed Salih Al-Munajjid
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