Rights of the Husband (Tangible Rights) - IV

Rights of the Husband (Tangible Rights) - IV


Tangible Rights:

The second section is the tangible rights of the husband on his wife, which include the wife serving her husband. Allah The Almighty created the woman and equipped her with characteristics that qualify her to carry out housework, manage her house and take care of its affairs. When the wife does the work of the marital house properly, she will comfort her husband. He will be pleased with her and feel that the rights of his house are fulfilled and its interests are considered, which satisfies his heart. Allah The Almighty mentioned this right in general, Saying (what means): {And due to the wives is similar to what is expected of them, according to what is reasonable.} [Quran 2:228] It means that the wives owe some rights as men owe them rights, and the husbands owe some rights as women owe them rights – all in accordance with what is reasonable. What is reasonable in the verse, according to the majority of scholars, may refer to people's customs, which are the criteria that people refer to in this issue. The customs of the righteous Muslims at all times and everywhere require the woman to serve the house of her husband.

Just look at the Mothers of the Believers, may Allah be pleased with them! They served in the house of the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ). Mother of the Believers, ’Aa‘ishah, may Allah be pleased with her, said, “We would prepare Siwaak [a tooth stick] and water for ablution for the Messenger of Allah  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ); he would wake up at night [to pray and use them].” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim] Mother of the believers Maymoonah, may Allah be pleased with her, said, “I prepared water for the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) [to make ritual bathing] wherewith he purified from Janaabah [post sex impurity].” Thus, scholars unanimously agreed that women should serve their husbands. This is the opinion of the majority of scholars, except for very few scholars whose opinion is weak, who said that a woman is not obligated to serve and look after her husband. This is certainly is a weak opinion, as there are no women who are better than the Mothers of the Believers, may Allah be pleased with them, who would serve their husband.

Even the noble daughter of the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) Faatimah, may Allah be pleased with her, served her husband until her hands swelled up due to grinding date stones. Scholars said that hands of Faatimah, may Allah be pleased with her, were scratched because of her frequent grinding of date stones to provide fodder for animals. Therefore, how would she have served her husband? Scholars also said that a woman should even take care of her husband's mount if custom requires that.

It was authentically narrated that Asmaa‘, may Allah be pleased with her, served Az-Zubayr, may Allah be pleased with him. She would go out on foot to his farm which was two-thirds of a Farsakh (one Farsakh is about 5 km), carrying date stones on her back.

It was commonly known among the women of the believers throughout the history of Muslims that women serve and look after the houses. This service never belittles the status of the woman or decreases her position. This is the nature upon which Allah The Almighty has created all people. No change should there be in the creation of Allah The Almighty.

Some people may deem serving in the house an insignificant matter, but it brings about appreciated results in the psychology of the husband when he leaves his house, feeling that his wife has taken care and looked after it. So, he enters his house with his affairs set right, his soul is calm and his heart is assured. He will not find things that confuse him or embitter his life or create trouble between him and his family. When women deviated from this sound nature, the houses of the Muslims looked antiquated where the husband finds unpleasant scenes to the extent that he is obliged to sweep it himself, do the laundry and cook the food.

Imaam Ibn Al-Qayyim  may  Allah  have  mercy  upon  him said, “When the woman lives in luxury and her husband sweeps the house, cooks the food, kneads the dough and bakes the bread, this will be evil.” This means that this state is the evil that Allah The Almighty never ordained. The woman should do what Allah The Almighty created her for and the man should do what Allah The Almighty created him for. Allah The Almighty did not create the man to do the housework. Thus, it is an evil word that a woman may utter when she asks her husband to serve himself or do for himself what he wants. In doing so, she contradicts her nature.

The woman who mistreats her husband and loses his pleasure, which is the cause of her entering Paradise, will be in great loss. The Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) said: “A woman whose husband dies while he is pleased with her will enter Paradise.”

When the woman overburdens her husband to accomplish the housework, whereas she lives in luxury and comfort, or that she asks him to bring someone to serve him and manage his affairs in a manner that sometimes causes temptation, all these things contradict the Fitrah (innate nature). Only when it is necessary is the woman allowed to ask her husband to bring someone to serve her. One day, Faatimah, may Allah be pleased with her, asked the Messenger of Allah  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) to bring her a servant, but he  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) replied: “Shall I guide you to something better than a servant…?” This indicates that there is no blame on the woman to ask for a servant, but only when necessary and needed. However, when she asks for a servant out of her desire to lead a luxurious life and out of arrogance or believing that she was not created for these matters and they are not her duty, this is against the Fitrah that Allah gave her and the good companionship that a woman should give her husband.

The woman should observe these things for her husband, and the righteous woman fully knows that there is nothing more perfect than the Sharee‘ah and religion of Allah The Almighty. Surely, whoever accepts the Sharee‘ah of Allah, Allah will be pleased with him and make him pleasant. When the woman responds to the calls or the customs and habits that contradict the Sharee‘ah of Allah and turns away from the Fitrah, she will not be sure to be saved from their evil consequences. They may apparently sound good, but in fact, they bring about unappreciated ends. The duty of the woman is to abide by the matters that she has perceived in her innate disposition and guidance of the righteous women from among the righteous predecessors, who looked after their husbands and fulfilled their rights in a manner that pleased Allah The Almighty. A woman cannot fulfill these rights properly unless she prepares herself in the following way:

First: She should ask Allah The Almighty to help her fulfill the rights of her husband and to guard her against negligence or failure. Allah The Almighty approves that she fulfills her duties toward her husband and disapproves of her neglecting them. So, she should frequently ask Allah The Almighty to help her fulfill her husband's rights.

Second: She should prepare herself psychologically to submit to the orders of Allah The Almighty, knowing that she is commanded by the Sharee‘ah of Allah to obey her husband, respect his role of being in charge and live with him equitably, which implies serving him, seeking his permission before leaving the house and observing his rights, trusts and secrets. Once she assuredly knows these things, she will respond according to her level of faith. A believing woman is expected to obey the orders of Allah The Almighty. Therefore, scholars said that Allah The Almighty began the Quranic verses which state these rights by saying: {O you who believe} because no person responds to the Commands of Allah The Almighty perfectly like the believer.

Third: She should firmly believe that she fulfills these rights without expecting compensation or reward from the husband. Rather, her main concern and great reward she focuses on would be the pleasure of Allah The Almighty. No believing woman seeks the pleasure of Allah except one would find her mostly obedient to her husband and observant of his rights in the most perfect way.

A righteous man said that he married a woman who would not find happiness or comfort except in fulfilling his rights. He added, “I might do wrong to her and become displeased with her, but she would spend the night weeping, asking me to forgive her even though it was my mistake.” This is the effect of strong faith. When the soul of the believing woman is purified, refined and responds to Allah The Almighty, she becomes fearful and keen to please her husband in all of her behavior, feelings, emotions and sayings. It is neither a shame nor a fault nor humility nor disgrace that a woman obeys her husband. Instead, it is perfection, superiority and success that Allah The Almighty grants her. Obedience to the husband by no means blemishes the perfection of the woman because this is the Fitrah that Allah The Almighty created people on. When the woman feels that this is not a defect, but is rather perfection, she will not only submit and find rest and reassurance, but she will also take the initiative and be vigorous enough to respond to the order of Allah The Almighty to fulfill these rights.

Also, the woman should exhaust the means that help her respond to the orders of Allah The Almighty, mainly by reading the biography of the female Companions, may Allah be pleased with them, and the women of the righteous predecessors as well as their state of being good wives to their husbands. She should also reflect on the Hadeeths of the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) which endear fulfilling the rights of the husbands to the women and encourage them.

Fourth: She should look at the good consequences that she will have in this life and in the Hereafter. Her house will be stable; she will find rest and reassurance; and her husband will also find rest and reassurance. On the other hand, she should look at the bad consequences that she might have if she neglected the husband's role of being in charge. As a result, the husband will soon feel that he is inferior, and if he gets this feeling, he would try to sap the strength of the woman. If she behaves haughtily and the husband persists, he may break her by divorcing her – Allah forbid! He may hit her in order to make her feel that he is more capable of fulfilling these rights than her. The woman should know that neglecting rights always produces the most evil results. Evil is not assuaged with evil, nor is a bad action encountered with a bad action. A bad action is encountered by a good one. Pondering on these matters greatly helps the woman to correct herself and correct her conduct with her husband.

Fifth: The last advice given to the Muslim woman is that she should not allow a third party to interfere in her affairs with her husband, because some women incite the wife against her husband and urge her to rebel against him, disobey him and neglect his rights. A bad companion causes unwelcome consequences. Thus, the wife should avoid talking with other women about the affairs of her house and the private matters she has with her husband. This would more probably guarantee her safety and a happy ending.

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