Huqooq of Women
Commenting on the abuse of the Shar’i rights of women, Hakimul Ummat Maulana Ashraf Ali Thaanvi (rahmatullah alayh) said:
“Nowadays there is considerable deficiency in the fulfilment of the rights of wives. Such denial of rights is great injustice and cruelty. Husbands tend to become frustrated over even the little acts of discretion of their pure and chaste wives. In their frustration and constriction of heart they violate the rights of their wives. This is most unintelligent.
Husbands fail to realize that inspite of the indiscretion of wives, they remain chaste and pure. They guard their chastity. This one attribute (i.e. chastity) overshadows all their indiscretion. In this attribute of chastity the honourable females of Hindustan are in fact like the Houris of Jannat.
If such a wife is deserted by her husband without him informing her, without her being aware of his whereabouts and without him having made any arrangement for her maintenance, she will remain at home guarding her chastity and honour. If the husband suddenly returns after years of absence, he will find his chaste wife in the same corner where he had abandoned her.
Regarding this very lofty attribute of chastity in chaste women, Allah Ta’ala says:
“If you dislike them, then perhaps you dislike something (an attribute in them) in which Allah has put considerable goodness.” (Qur’aan)
Absorbed in her chastity, she has no need for pretence and display of customary mannerisms (as is the practice of unchaste women of these times). On the contrary, the real capital of unchaste women is deceit and cunning to deceive the husband. Ignorant people describe this customary display of manners as refinement whereas it is an artificial act.”
The plaudits which Hakimul Ummat confers on women apply to the simple, chaste and purdah nasheen women of former times. Today such women are rare exceptions. Westernization has taken its toll. Chastity is the lost capital of women. They are in this age bereft of simplicity, modesty and honesty. Cunning, pretence, treachery and ingratitude are their hallmarks.
Hadhrat Hakimul Ummat would have had some other comments if he was living today. The question of women in this day remaining chaste, contented, patient and resigned to Allah Ta’ala if husbands abandon them for years, may be entertained in dreams. A little incompatibility and sternness of the husband are considered grounds for separation. Some learned men too have fallen in the snares of women, hence ‘annulments’ have become a joke. The very institution of Nikah has been reduced to a mockery.
The meaning of Allah’s La’nat is incomprehensible to the women of today. They feel competent and strong enough to live and perish and be resurrected in Qiyaamah under the La’nat of Allah Ta’ala, but they are not prepared to subdue their evil emotional attributes for the sake of the happiness and success of their married life. Thus, we find that women are prepared to ruin their lives and the lives of their children in this world and the Aakhirah for the sake of enjoying the haraam freedom of kuffaar women.
The home has become a prison for most women on account of their innate attitude of ingratitude. Allah Ta’ala has ordained that the whole world is a prison for the Mu’min. In this worldly prison, home is or is supposed to be a sacred sanctuary. But modern woman desires the streets and the vile gazes of immoral men, hence her home has become a prison for her. But it is a place of safety. A place of holiness. A place of Rahmat. A place of Noor and a place in which she can attain lofty ranks of Divine Proximity. It is a place in which she can gain the ranks of martyrdom (Shahaadat)
Irretrievable breakdown of the marriage is an alien concept rejected by Islam. This western concept allows for divorce for reasons which are never valid in the Shariah of Allah Ta’ala.
If a woman fancies another man or she does not find her husband up to her pre-marriage idea of expectation, this will constitute grounds for divorce in the kuffaar conception. This attitude will foster disobedience and aloofness in the wife, culminating in a barrier developing between them. Thus, the aim of irretrievable breakdown is achieved.
Adultery and immorality are no longer valid grounds for divorce in the western sub-culture. But, a post-marriage dislike developed by the woman is regarded valid ground for wrecking the marriage and ruining the home. Any stupid argument is valid in a subculture for the attainment of irretrievable breakdown of the marriage. This attitude militates against the sacred institution of Nikah and the obedience which the Qur’aan and Sunnah impose on a wife for her husband.
A woman who demands Talaaq from her husband for kuffaar reasons—for reasons upheld by the western subculture— for reasons never accepted as valid by Islam, will be denied even the fragrance of Jannat. She remains perpetually under the dark shadow of Divine Curse.
Mujlisul Ulama of South Africa P.O. Box 3395 Port Elizabeth, 6056 South Africa