INSTRUCTIONS ON WIFE-BEATING
"Allah has permitted the husband to discipline his wife by striking her." - Omar Subedar
Mosque: Makki Masjid - 8450 TORBRAM ROAD BRAMPTON, ON L6T 4M9
Born in: Toronto, Ontario
Lives in: Brampton, Ontario
What he's preaching:
In 2010 Imam Omar Subedar wrote an article titled "Maintaining a Marriage," in which he explained the Islamic perspective on marital relationship. The following are excerpts of Omar Subedar's article:
"By the grace of Allah we as Muslims have been blessed with a religion that provides us with guidance in every avenue of our lives...
"In order to lead a healthy relationship Allah has given some guidelines for both the husband and wife in the Qur'an which the Prophet (P.B.U.H.) has elucidated in a number of narrations. The first guideline our Creator has provided in Surah Nisä, verse 34, is that He has made the husband officially in charge of managing the relationship by saying; "Men are in charge of women…" and has provided two reasons for doing so;
1. "…by [right of] the precedence Allah has given one over the other
2. and what they spend [for maintenance] from their wealth…"
The reason why Allah has given precedence to men over women is only known to Him... It is due to this precedence that Allah has only selected men in the past for prophet hood and for conveying His message rather than women. As for the financial obligations a husband has to his wife, they are:
Paying the dowry and…
Providing the essentials of life such as food, shelter and clothing...
One important point to note here is that just because Allah has made the husband in charge of managing the relationship, this does not imply that he is divinely authorized to dictate, oppress, abuse or bully his wife. Allah has ordered the husbands in the Qur'än, "And live with them (i.e. the wives) in kindness." [4:19]...
The wives on the other hand have an obligation to be obedient to their husbands in matters that do not contradict the Shari'ah and to protect their chastity along with safeguarding their husbands' property and children during his absence. Allah further explains in verse 34 of Surah Nisä, "So the righteous women are they who are devoutly obedient, guarding in [the husband's] absence what Allah would have them guard." The obedience a wife has to exercise with her husband can be somewhat understood by the Prophet's (P.B.U.H.) statement, "If I were to order anyone to prostrate to another, I would have ordered a woman to prostrate to her husband." (Jäm' Tirmidhë)
Interestingly however her obedience does not go without merit. The Messenger (P.B.U.H.) has explained, "When a woman observes her five (daily prayers), fasts during (the prescribed) month, protects her chastity and obeys her husband, she will be told (on the Day of Judgment), "Enter Paradise from whichever door you wish." (Musnad Ahmad)...
If for some reason the wife becomes stubborn, arrogant or disobedient even after the husband is doing his part then Allah has introduced a three point dispute resolution plan, by mentioning, "But those [wives] from whom you fear arrogance then;
1. Advise them: Sitting down and having a discussion to try and understand what the problem is provides many fruitful results. Many a times the husband unknowingly does something that irritates the wife due to which she resorts to such behavior. Therefore it is imperative that both parties sit down with a cool mind and collectively diagnose the problem and there after work out a solution. If however it turns out that there really is no problem and the wife is acting as such out of arrogance or stubbornness then the husband should counsel her to fear Allah and to try and live as a happy couple. If there is something that is bothering her, she should feel free to express it.
2. Forsake them in bed: If the problem persists after exercising the first measure then the husband should refrain from having sexual relations with her.
3. Strike them: If the problem still does not get resolved then as a final resort Allah has permitted the husband to discipline his wife by striking her, however this does not imply that Allah is promoting domestic violence. The Prophet (P.B.U.H.) has made it very clear that the beating should not be agonizing in any shape or form. He mentioned in his sermon during the 'Farewell Pilgrimage', "…and hit them lightly." Ibn Jareer has recorded in his 'tafseer' that `Ataa asked Ibn Abbas (R.A.) to define 'hitting lightly'. Ibn Abbas (R.A.) explained, "(To hit) with a miswak (a wooden tooth stick) or something similar." If one were to practically experiment hitting himself with a miswak he would immediately come to realize that he can barley even inflict any pain on himself let alone others. The Prophet (P.B.U.H.) has also instructed, "Do not strike the face and do not censure (your wife)…" (Sunan Abu Däwōd). This clearly shows that verbal and physical abuse is not being encouraged in this verse at all and that they are clearly prohibited in Islam. On one occasion many women had visited the Prophet's (P.B.U.H.) family to complain about their husbands beating them. Consequently the Prophet (P.B.U.H.) admonished their husbands publically by stating, "Many women have encircled Muhammad's family complaining about their husbands. Those men are not the best of you." (Sunan Abu Däwōd)...
The objective of striking her lightly is to discipline her and to make her realize that what she is doing is unwarranted.