Islamic Sufism Spirituality

The seriousness of the rights of the husband in Islam

Posted on: January 3, 2009


Allah, the Most High, says:

“The men have authority over the women due to the excellence which Allah has given to the man over the women, and due to the wealth that they spend upon them.”[1]

Ibn Katheer says,”The man is in charge (qayyim) of the woman, i.e. he is the one in-charge of her, her chief, the one having authority over her and the one who corrects her if she inclines away from what is correct.”[2]

Abdur-Rahmaan as-Sa’dee said (regarding the above mention Aayah). “That is due to the excellence of men over women, and the eminence which they have given over them. So the pre-eminence of the men over the women is from many aspects: holding positions of leadership and authority is particular to men, likewise Prophethood and Messengership. They are also particularized by many acts of worship such as jihaad, the eids and the Jum’ah prayers. Also due to the characteristics given to them by Allaah, the like of which are not possessed by women such as sound intellect, composure, patience and endurance.

Likewise they are particularized with having to spend upon their wives, and indeed spending in many ways which are particular to the men – which distinguish them from the women. So perhaps this is the reason for His saying: “…due to the wealth that they spend…” – and exactly what they spend is not stated to indicate that the spending referred to is general. So from all this is known that the man is like a governor and master for his wife, and she is with him like a captive. So his role is to take care of that which Allaah has placed him in-charge of, and her role is to be obedient to her Lord and to obey her husband.[3]

Al-Qaasimee said. “The men have authority (qawwaamoon) over the women”[4] – qawwaamoon is the plural of qawwaam. Qawwaam is the one who is responsible for taking care of their welfare, managing their affairs and disciplining them. That is, they are in-charge of and are to take care of all manners and behavior of the women; ordering them and forbidding them, just as the ruler is responsible for his subjects. This is due to two reasons: (i) Due to the nature, which Allaah gave them, and (ii) due to the role, which they carry out.

The first is indicated by the Sayings of Allah:

“Due to the excellence which Allaah has given to the man over the woman.”[5]

This refers to the relation between the men and the women, and means that the men have a position of dominance over them due to the superiority which Allaah has given to the men over the women.[6]

Allah, the Most High, says:

“Men have a degree over the women.”[7]

Ibn Katheer said, “Meaning: in excellence; in the nature given to them; in manneres; in status; in the obedience to then; in their spending and taking care of the (women’s) welfare; and in excellence in this life and Hereafter.”[8]

The Messenger of Allah (S.A.W.) said, “Every soul from the children of Aadam is a master; so the man is the master of his family, and the woman is the mistress of her household.”[9]

Allaah’s Messenger (S.A.W.) said, “If I were to order anyone to prostrate to other than Allaah, I would have ordered the woman to prostrate to her husband. By Him in whose Hand is the soul of Muhammad, the woman will not fulfil the rights of her Lord until she fulfils the rights of her husband; and even if he were to request her for herself (i.e. to have intercourse with her) whilst she was sitting upon a camel’s saddle[10], she should not refse him.”[11]

The Messanger of Allaah (S.A.W.) said, “It is not right that any human being should prostrate to another human being I would have ordered the woman to prostrate to her husband due to the greatness of his rights upon her. By Him in whose Hand is my soul, if from his foot to the crown of his head there was a wound pouring forth pus, and she (the wife) came and licked that, then she would (still) not have fulfilled
his right.”[12]

The Messenger of Allaah (S.A.W.) said, “The right of the husband over the wife is such that if he had a wound, or his nostrils were pouring forth pus or blood, then she were to swolloe that down – then she would (still) not have fulfilled his right.”[13]

Aboo Hurayrah, radiyallaahu ‘anhu, reports that Allaah’s Messenger (S.A.W.) said, “It is not right for a woman to fast[14] whilst the husband is present except with his permission;[15] and whatever wealth she spends in charity without his order, then half of the reward is for him.”[16]

Shaykh al-Albaanee said, “Since it is obligation upon the woman to obey her husband with regard to fulfilment of his desire with her, then it is even more fitting that it is obligatory upon her to obey him with regard to that which is even more important than that – such as what pertains to bringing up the children, correcting her family and the like – all such rights and obligations.[17]

Al-Haafidh Ibn Hajr said, “The hadeeth shows that the right of the husband upon the wife has priority over her performing optional good deeds, since his right is an obligation, and fulfilment of an obligation, takes precedence over carrying out something optional.”[18]

Also Shaykhul-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah, raheemahullaah, was asked about a man who has a wife who fasts during the day and stands in prayer throughout the nights. Whenever he calls her to his bed she refuses and gives precedence to praying in the night and fasting during the day over the obedience to the husband. So is this permissible? Shaykhul- Islaam replied, “That is not permissible for her by agreement of the Muslims. Rather it is obligatory upon her to obey when he calls her to bed, this is a binding obligation upon her. How ever standing the night in prayer and fasting during the day is optional over an obligation… and there is no right, after the rights of Allaah and His Messenger (S.A.W.) more binding upon the woman than the rights of the husband.[19]

Mu’aadh ibn Jabal, (RA), said that the Messenger of Allaah (S.A.W.) said, “If the woman knew the right of the husband, she would not sit when his morning and evening meals were presented until he finished.”[20]
_______________________________________________________

1. Soorah an-Nisaa’ (4):34
2. Tafseerul-Qur’aanil-Adheem (1/194)
3. Tayseerul-Kareemir-Rahmaan (1/344)
4. Soorah an-Nisaa’ (4):34
5. Soorah an-Nisaa’ (4):34
6. Mahaasinut-Ta’weel (abridged) (5/130)
7. Soorah al-Baqarah (2):228
8. Tafseerul-Qura’aanil-Adheem (1/271)
9. Reported by ibn as-Sunnee in ‘Amalul Yawm wal Laylah and it occurs in Saheehul Jaami’ is Sagheer (no.4565)
10. They used to sit upon that whilst giving birth – as mentioned in an-Nihaayah: “Its meaning is an exhoration for the women to be obedient to their husbands, and that it is not for them to refuse even if they are in that state – so how about at other times?!”
11. Reported by Ibn Maajah (no.1853), Ibn Hibbaan (6/186 – Ihsaan) and Ahmad (4/381) from ‘Adullaah ibn Awfaa. Shaykh al-Albaanee declared the chain of narration of Ahmad to be saheeh to the standard of the Muslim in as-Saheehah (3/202).
12. Reported by Ahmad (3/159) and others. It’s of narration is declared to be good by al-Mundhiree in at-Targheeb wat-Tarheeb (3/75), and it occurs in Saheeul Jaami’ (no. 3148)
13. Al- Bazzaar reports it (no. 1465: al-Kashf) from Aboo Sa’eed al-Khudree, (RA) with a good chain of narration whose narrators are reliable and famous – as declared by al-Mundhiree in at-Targheeb wat-Tarheeb (3/74). Also reported Ibn Hibbaan (6/184, Ihsaan), al-Haakim (2/189) and others, and it occurs in Saheehul-Jaami’ (no.3148)
14. Translator’s note: i.e. optional fast.
15. An-Nawawee said (Sharh Shaheeh Muslim [7/115]), “It’s reason is that the husband has the right to enjoy his wife on all days, and his right is an immediate obligation and not to be denied him due to optional nor something obligatory which may be performed at anytime.”
16. Reported by al-Bukhaaree (Eng. Transl. 7/94/no. 123)
17. Aadaabuz Zifaaf p.282 1st Edition.
18. Al-Fath (9/296)
19. Majmoo’ al-Fataawaa (32/274-275)
20. Reported by al-Bazzaar (al-Kashf, 2/180) and others. It occurs in Sheehul Jaami’ (no.5259)

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3 Responses to "The seriousness of the rights of the husband in Islam"

The Messenger of Allaah (S.A.W.) said, “The right of the husband over the wife is such that if he had a wound, or his nostrils were pouring forth pus or blood, then she were to swolloe that down – then she would (still) not have fulfilled his right.”[13]

I was wondering where did you get from this hadeeth,when was it sent to Prophet (saw) what was the situation and whom the hadeeth was directed to. If you could give me a tafseer i would really apreciated that. Dzhazak Allhu hairan

Sister it was written at the bottom of page…

13. Al- Bazzaar reports it (no. 1465: al-Kashf) from Aboo Sa’eed al-Khudree, (RA) with a good chain of narration whose narrators are reliable and famous – as declared by al-Mundhiree in at-Targheeb wat-Tarheeb (3/74). Also reported Ibn Hibbaan (6/184, Ihsaan), al-Haakim (2/189) and others, and it occurs in Saheehul-Jaami’ (no.3148)

Dear Sir,

I would like your knowledgeable answers on followings from authentic hadith & Quran:

1. Is wife in Islam obliged to take care of his Husband in taking care on day to day routine work such as ironing cloths, giving breakfast, cooking food for family, cooking food for the family guests on Husband request/order?

2. If a husband asks wife not to attend one day fitness class outside (earlier requested by Husband to take a fitness course) and wife Refuse’s husband request, is he allowed in Islam?

3. What are the consequences a wife could face, if not obeying husband’s day to day routine request/instructions.

Appreciate if you can give more light on Wife’s Obligations on Husband and wise virsa.

Pls reply on my email.

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