Fruits for the Week

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The Prophet (saw) said: “It is not permissible for a woman to fast (an optional fast) in the presence of her husband unless he permits her. She may not also allow anyone into his house without his permission.” (Bukhari)

Although the hadiths have mentioned many virtues of observing optional fasts, a woman may not observe them without her husband’s permission because fasting would deny him his conjugal rights. Of course, a good husband would never prevent his wife without good reason. He should not deny her the virtues merely because he is upset with her on some other account. However, should he refuse her permission, it is not permissible for her to fast because obeying him takes precedence over voluntary fasts.

The above hadith makes it clear that obeying one’s husband takes precedence over all voluntary acts of worship. Therefore, when a woman obeys her husband, she will receive rewards greater that what she would receive for voluntary acts of worship. For this reason, a woman should never feel that her husband has deprived her of rewards if he refuses her permission to observe voluntary fasts. She should reflect on her reasons for fasting. It is obvious that she is fasting to be rewarded and to attain Allah’s pleasure. These being the reasons, she should bear in mind that by obeying her husband’s instruction not to fast, she will receive greater rewards and in pleasing her husband she will attain Allah’s pleasure because Allah will not be pleased with her until her husband is pleased with her. The obedient wife will therefore receive a greater reward for eating and drinking than she would receive for fasting.

 

Parents should give their children a proper upbringing by adorning them with the jewels of sound Islamic education, the gems of managing a household, the garments of fear for Allah, the bangles of Taqwa and the trousseau of obedience to Allah and in engaging in His dhikr. These are real gifts.

It is especially important for mothers to display respect for their husband in front of their daughters because their daughters will treat their husbands exactly how they see their mothers treating their fathers. There are many good mothers who raise their daughters so well that their sons-in-law and their families consider it their good fortune that these fine ladies have married into their families. Men marrying such women have attained kingship even though they may be living in shacks. They are wealthy with the sweet words she speaks and her ever-endearing smiles. The children born to such a couple will also be righteous servants of Allah blessed with intelligence and keep aptitudes because they have been brought up in the lap of an excellent mother.

Among the ranks of such mothers was Asma who gave the following golden words of advice to her daughter. These words are inspirations to vey bride. “Beloved daughter! You are now departing from this home where you spent the days of your childhood and where you first set you foot upon the threshold of adolescence. You will now be the decoration of a bed that exudes a fragrance which will be unfamiliar to you. You will be treading step-by-step with a lifelong companion who is still a stranger to you.”    

 

Dear daughter! Become the ground for your companion so that he may become your heaven. Become his cradle and he will become your supporting pillar. Become his slave and he will become yours. Never nag or force him into anything because he will then despise you. Never stay away from him because he will then forget you. If he draws close to you, draw even closer to him. Show concern for even his nose, ears and eyes (i.e. never cause him even the slightest harm). Be particular about using perfume because it comforts his mind via his nose. Keep watch over your tongue because your sweet words give him comfort via his ears. Keep your appearance attractive because so that you may be the delight of his eyes and his source of contentment. Let him always see you in good condition with your hair combed, with kohl in your eyes, with neat clothes and a scarf on your head.” “My precious daughter! If you are particular about practising these advices, your home will be reminiscent of Jannah no matter how small it may be.

May Allah grant every Muslim wife the ability to practise the advices given above? It should never be that a bride dresses well and beautifies herself only while her marriage is new and then begins to resemble a maidservant after a few months, dressing up only when going out. A wife should never appear shabby in front of her husband because this will destroy his love for her.

(Prepared by Muhammad Haneef Abdul Majeed)