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Recommendations with regard to Women

September 4, 2014
Imam Al-Nawawi’s Riyad-us-Saliheen
Chapter 34
Recommendations with regard to Women

Allah, the Exalted, says:

“… and live with them honourably”. (4:19)

“You will never be able to do perfect justice between wives even if it is your ardent desire, so do not incline too much to one of them (by giving her more of your time and provision) so as to leave the other hanging (i.e., neither divorced nor married). And if you do justice, and do all that is right, and fear Allah by keeping away from all that is wrong, then Allah is Ever Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.” (4:129)

273. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) said: “Take my advice with regard to women: Act kindly towards women, for they were created from a rib, and the most crooked part of a rib is its uppermost. If you attempt to straighten it; you will break it, and if you leave it alone it will remain crooked; so act kindly toward women”.
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].

In another narration of Al-Bukhari and Muslim, Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) said: “A woman is like a rib, if you attempt to straighten it, you will break it; and if you benefit from her, you will do so while crookedness remains in her”.

In another narration of Muslim, Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) said: ‘Woman has been created from a rib and will in no way be straightened for you; so if you want to benefit from her, you will benefit from her while crookedness remains in her. If you attempt to straighten her, you will break her, and breaking her is divorcing her”.

274. `Abdullah bin Zam`ah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported that he heard the Prophet (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) giving a speech when he mentioned the she-camel (of Prophet Salih) and the man who had killed her. Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) said: “When the most wicked man among them went forth (to kill the she-camel).’ (91:12) signifies that a distinguished, wicked and most powerful chief of the people jumped up to kill the she-camel.” Then he (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) made mention of women and said, “Some of you beat your wives as if they were slaves, and then lie with them at the end of the day”.

Then he (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) admonished them against laughing at another’s passing of wind, saying, “Why does any of you laugh at another doing what he does himself”
[Al-Bukhari and Muslim].

275. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) said, “A believer must not hate (his wife) believing woman; if he dislikes one of her characteristics he will be pleased with another”.
[Muslim].

276. `Amr bin Al-Ahwas Al-Jushami (May Allah be pleased with him) reported that he had heard the Prophet (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) saying on his Farewell Pilgrimage, after praising and glorifying Allah and admonishing people, “Treat women kindly, they are like captives in your hands; you do not owe anything else from them. In case they are guilty of open indecency, then do not share their beds and beat them lightly but if they return to obedience, do not have recourse to anything else against them. You have rights over your wives and they have their rights over you. Your right is that they shall not permit anyone you dislike to enter your home, and their right is that you should treat them well in the matter of food and clothing”.
[At-Tirmidhi].

277. Mu`awiyah bin Haidah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: I asked Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam): “What right can any wife demand of her husband?” He replied, “You should give her food when you eat, clothe her when you clothe yourself, not strike her on the face, and do not revile her or separate from her except in the house”.
[Abu Dawud].

278. Abu Hurairah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) said, “The believers who show the most perfect Faith are those who have the best behaviour, and the best of you are those who are the best to their wives”.
[At-Tirmidhi].

279. Iyas bin `Abdullah (May Allah be pleased with him) reported: Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) said, “Do not beat Allah’s bondwomen.” When `Umar (May Allah be pleased with him) came to Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) and complained saying: “The women have become very daring towards their husbands,” He (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) gave permission to beat them. Then many women went to the family of the Messenger of Allah (wives) complaining of their husbands, and he (the Prophet (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam)) said, “Many women have gone round Muhammad’s family complaining of their husbands. Those who do so, that is, those who take to beating their wives, are not the best among you”.
[Abu Dawud].

280. `Abdullah bin `Amr bin Al-`as (May Allah be pleased with them) reported: Messenger of Allah (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) said, “The world is but a (quick passing) enjoyment; and the best enjoyment of the world is a pious and virtuous woman”.
[Muslim].

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