Thursday 14 Jumada al-ula 1444 - 8 December 2022
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What is the ruling on saying that the household of the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) was not free of marital problems?

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Publication : 22-11-2022

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Question

What is the ruling on one who says that in the household of the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) there were marital problems? By saying that, he does not mean to detract from the status of the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him); rather what he means by that is that even the leader of mankind was not spared such problems, so how about others?

In saying that, is there any disrespect towards the Mothers of the Believers (may Allah be pleased with them)?

Do these words constitute apostasy?

How should he repent from that?

Answer

Praise be to Allah.

Firstly:

It should be noted that the household of the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) was the best and purest of households. He (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) was the best and kindest of all people to his wives, and the most perfect in attitude and in the way in which he interacted with his wives.

At-Tirmidhi (3895) narrated that ‘A’ishah (may Allah be pleased with her) said: The Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) said: “The best of you is the one who is best to his wives, and I am the best of you to my wives.” Classed as sahih by Shaykh al-Albani (may Allah have mercy on him) in Sahih Sunan at-Tirmidhi.

Ibn Kathir (may Allah have mercy on him) said: One of the characteristics of the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) was that he was gentle and easy-going with people and playful with his wives; he would treat them kindly, spend generously on them, and joke and laugh with them, to the extent that he raced with ‘A’ishah the Mother of the Believers, by way of showing kindness to her. She said: The Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) raced with me and I won; that was before I gained weight. Then I raced with him after I had gained weight, and he won, so he said: “This is in return for that.”  His wives would gather every night in the house of the one with whom the Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) was going to spend that night, and he would eat dinner with them sometimes, then each of them would go back to her own house, and he would sleep with one of his wives next to him under the same blanket; he would take off his upper garment and sleep in his lower garment. After he had prayed ‘Isha’, he (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) would go home and chat with his wives for a while before going to sleep, in order to put them at ease and make them feel comfortable."(Tafsir Ibn Kathir  2/242).

Secondly:

What happens between spouses of arguments or disputes about some issues of the household or day-to-day issues, and the like, is something normal and is part of married life. It is part of the life of this world, which is not free of trouble, toils and problems; these things are part of parcel of this worldly life.

Some of these problems and troubles occurred occasionally in the household of the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him). There existed among his wives some of that jealousy that usually occurs among women. The Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) was infallible, but his wives (may Allah be pleased with them), even though they were the best of women, were not infallible. Allah, may He be exalted, says (interpretation of the meaning):

{O Prophet, say to your wives, “If you should desire the worldly life and its adornment, then come, I will provide for you and give you a gracious release

But if you should desire Allah and His Messenger and the home of the Hereafter - then indeed, Allah has prepared for the doers of good among you a great reward”} [al-Ahzab 33:28-29].

Shaykh ‘Abd ar-Rahman as- Sa‘di (may Allah have mercy on him) said: When the wives of the Messenger of Allah (sa) began to make demands on him with regard to maintenance and clothing, they asked for something that he was not able to do all the time, but they all persisted in their demands, which caused him some distress, to the extent that he kept away from them for a month."(Taysir al-Karim ar-Rahman fi Tafsir Kalam al-Mannan p. 662).

Al-Bukhari (5225) narrated from Anas (may Allah be pleased with him): The Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) was with one of his wives, when one of the Mothers of the Believers sent a bowl in which there was some food. The one in whose house the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) was struck the hand of the servant, and the bowl fell and broke. The Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) picked up the pieces of the bowl, then he began to collect the food that was in it, and said, “Your mother got jealous.” Then he made the servant wait until a bowl belonging to the one in whose house he was, was brought. He gave the intact bowl to the one whose bowl had been broken, and he kept the broken bowl in the house of the one who had broken it.

Al-Bukhari (2468) narrated from Ibn ‘Abbas (ra) – regarding the story of the Prophet’s shunning his wives –a lengthy hadith from ‘Umar ibn al-Khattab (may Allah be pleased with him), in which it says: … We Quraysh used to have the upper hand over women, but when we came to the Ansar, we saw that they were a people whose women had the upper hand over them, and our women started to learn the way of the women of the Ansar. I shouted at my wife, and she answered me back, and I found it very strange that she answered me back. She said: Why do you find it strange that I answered you back? By Allah, the wives of the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) answer him back, and one of them may avoid him all day until night comes…

So if saying that the household of the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) was not free of some of this matter, is not by way of undermining the status of the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) – Allah forbid – or that of the members of his household (may Allah be pleased with them all), then there is nothing wrong with it, and there may be some benefit and comfort in that for someone who is faced with similar problems in his household, and he may be able to follow the example of the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) in the way in which he dealt with this problem.

And Allah knows best.

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Source: Islam Q&A