Monday 6 Shawwal 1445 - 15 April 2024
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Prophet Muhammad’s Guidance on Marriage

Question

How did the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) conclude his marriages? How was it done? How did he (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) consummate the marriage offer feasts? What did he offer as Mahr (bridal money) in detail?

Summary of answer

Prophet Muhammad’s guidance with regard to marriage was that he encouraged making it easy, announcing it and proclaiming it openly, and expressing joy and happiness on this occasion; making a wedding feast and inviting people to it; and enjoining those who are invited to attend. Then he enjoined treating the wife with kindness and trying one's best to achieve that.

Praise be to Allah.

Prophet Muhammad’s Guidance on Marriage

The guidance of the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) with regard to marriage was that he encouraged making it easy, announcing it and proclaiming it openly, and expressing joy and happiness on this occasion; making a wedding feast and inviting people to it; enjoining those who are invited to attend, and even if a person is fasting he should attend and offer Du`a’ for the host of the feast, but he does not have to eat. 

Then he enjoined treating the wife with kindness and trying one's best to achieve that. 

This is in general terms. There follows a detailed discussion: 

Affordable dowry (Mahr) 

Al-Bayhaqi (14721) narrated that the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) said: “The best of dowries is that which is most affordable.” It was narrated by Abu Dawud (2117) with the wording: “The best of marriages is that which is most affordable.” This was classed as authentic by Al-Albani. 

It says in ‘Awn Al-Ma`bud: “I.e. the easiest for the man by making the dowry and so on easy. Al-`Allamah Ash-Shaykh Al-`Azizi (may Allah have mercy on him) said: i.e., the lowest dowry or the easiest in accepting the proposal.” 

Ahmad (23957) and Ibn Majah (4095) narrated from `Aishah (may Allah be pleased with her) that the Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) said: “One of the signs of a woman being blessed is that the process of proposing to her is made easy and the dowry is made affordable and she bears children easily.” (Classed as sound by Al-Albani in Sahih Al-Jami`, 2235) 

At-Tirmidhi (1114) narrated that `Umar ibn Al-Khattab (may Allah be pleased with him) said: Do not go to extremes with regard to women's dowries. If that were something honourable in this world or a sign of piety before Allah, then the Prophet of Allah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) would have been the most entitled to it, but I never heard that the Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) offered as a dowry for any of his wives or accepted as a dowry for any of his daughters anything more than twelve Uqiyah. (Classed as authentic by Al-Albani in Sahih At-Tirmidhi) 

An Uqiyah is 40 Dirhams; the weight of a Dirham in grams is 2.975 g [of silver]. 

Announcing the marriage 

At-Tirmidhi (1089) narrated from `Aishah (may Allah be pleased with her) that she said: The Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) said: “Announce this marriage .” (Classed as sound by Al-Albani in Al-Irwa’, 7/50) 

An-Nasa’i (3369) narrated that Muhammad ibn Hatib (may Allah be pleased with him) said: The Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) said: “What separates permissible from prohibited is  [beating] the Daff and singing at the wedding.” (Classed as sound by Al-Albani) 

Beating the daff at weddings is limited to women only

Ibn Hajar (may Allah have mercy on him) said in Al-Fath: “In the strong Hadiths, there is permission for that for women; it is not appropriate for men, because of the general prohibition on men resembling women.” 

The wedding feast (Walimah) 

This is a confirmed Sunnah at weddings and it is part of announcing the marriage and of expressing joy and happiness on this occasion. 

It was narrated from Anas (may Allah be pleased with him) that the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) said to `Abd Ar-Rahman ibn `Awf (may Allah be pleased with him) when he got married: “Give a feast even if it is with just one sheep.” (Al-Bukhari and Muslim) 

Some of the scholars said that this is obligatory, because of the reports narrated by Ahmad (22526) from Ibn Buraydah from his father, who said: When `Ali proposed to Fatimah (may Allah be pleased with them both), the Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) said: “There has to be a feast for the wedding.” Al-Albani said in Adab Al-Zafaf (72): “There is nothing wrong with its Isnad [chain of narration], as Ibn Hajar said in Al-Fath.” 

It is obligatory to attend the feast if invited . It was narrated from `Abdullah ibn `Umar (may Allah be pleased with him) that the Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) said: “If one of you is invited to the feast, let him go to it.” (Al-Bukhari and Muslim) 

Ibn `Uthaymin (may Allah have mercy upon him) said: 

“The scholars (may Allah have mercy on them) say that it is obligatory to respond to the first invitation, i.e., if one is mentioned by name and invited as an individual, whether the host invites him himself or through a deputy or by means of a card sent to him, on condition that there be no evils involved in the wedding feast. If there is any evil involved, then it depends: if when attending he is able to prevent the evil, then he must attend; if he is not able to do that, then it is not permissible for him to attend.” (Liqa’ Al-Bab Al-Maftuh, 13/133) 

It is permissible to offer a wedding feast without meat. Al-Bukhari (4213) narrated that Anas (may Allah be pleased with him) said: The Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) halted between Khaybar and Madinah for three days, during which he married Safiyyah (may Allah be pleased with her). I invited the Muslims to his wedding feast, in which there was no bread and no meat; there was nothing except what the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) commanded Bilal (may Allah be pleased with him) to spread out of leather mats, on which dates, ghee and dried yoghurt were placed. 

How to congratulate someone on marriage

It is recommended to congratulate the husband as the Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) congratulated people. It was narrated from Abu Hurayrah (may Allah be pleased with him) that when a man got married he would congratulate him and pray for him, saying: “May Allah bless you and bring blessings upon you and bring you together in goodness.” (Narrated by Abu Dawud (2130) and classed as authentic by Al-Albani) 

What to do on wedding night

It is recommended for the husband to do several things when he enters upon his wife, including the following: 

It was narrated by Ahmad (26925) that Asma’ bint `Umays (may Allah be pleased with her) said: I was the one who took care of `Aishah and prepared her for her marriage to the Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him), and I had some women with me. She said: By Allah, we did not find any food with him except a vessel of milk. He drank from it then he passed it to `Aishah, but the young girl felt too shy. We said: Do not turn away the hand of the Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him); take it from him. She took it shyly and drank from it, then he said: Pass it to your friends. We said: We do not feel like drinking it. He (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) said: Do not combine hunger with lies. (Classed as sound by Al-Albani in Adab Al-Zafaf, 19) 

  • Putting his hand on his wife's head and praying for her

Because of the reports narrated by Abu Dawud (2160) from `Amr ibn Shu`ayb, from his father, from his grandfather, from the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) who said: “ When one of you marries a woman, let him take hold of her forelock and say: O Allah, I ask You for the goodness within her and the goodness that You have made her inclined towards, and I take refuge with You from the evil within her and the evil that You have made her inclined towards.” (Classed as sound by Al-Albani) 

Ibn Abu Shaybah (17156) narrated that Shaqiq said: A man came to `Abdullah ibn Mas`ud (may Allah be pleased with him) and said: ‘I have married a young virgin girl, but I am afraid that she may hate me.’ `Abdullah said: ‘Love comes from Allah and hatred comes from satan, who wants to make you hate what Allah has made permissible. When she comes to you, tell her to pray two Rak`ahs behind you.’” (Classed as authentic by Al-Albani in Adab Al-Zafaf, 24) 

  • He should say before he has intercourse with his wife: Bismillahi Allahumma jannibna Ash-Shaytan wa jannib Ash-Shaytan ma razaqtana (In the name of Allah, O Allah, protect us from satan and protect whatever You give to us from satan)’ because of the report narrated by Al-Bukhari (3271) from Ibn `Abbas (may Allah be pleased with him) from the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) said: “When one of you wants to approach (have intercourse with) his wife, if he says: ‘Bismillahi Allahumma jannibna Ash-Shaytan wa jannib Ash-Shaytan ma razaqtana (In the name of Allah, O Allah, protect us from satan and protect whatever You give to us from satan )’ – then if they are given a child, satan will not harm it.” 
  • We affirm the importance of kind treatment of the wife and fearing Allah with regard to her, and that she should fear Allah with regard to him (the husband). 

Allah says (interpretation of the meaning):

“and live with them honourably. If you dislike them, it may be that you dislike a thing and Allah brings through it a great deal of good.” [An-Nisa’ 4:19] 

Also, the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) said: “If a woman offers her five daily prayers, fasts her month (Ramadan), guards her chastity and obeys her husband, it will be said to her: Enter Paradise from whichever of the Gates of Paradise you wish.” (Classed as authentic by Al-Albani in Takhrij Al-Mishkat, 3254) 

And Allah knows best.

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Source: Islam Q&A