- Prophet’s Companions: High Position and Lofty Merits
- Their Merits in the Quran and Sunnah
- Love of Prophet’s Companions is a Sign of Belief
- Encouragement to Follow Their Examples
- Banning Insults and Impugnance of the Prophet’s Companions
- Examples of the Prophet’s Companions
Allah chose the best of people to the company of his prophet (may Allah’s Peace and Blessings be upon him); they sincerely believed in his message and upheld his cause proving most truthful in faith, deepest in understanding and best in good deeds. Those are the Prophet’s Companions, who fearlessly conveyed the divine message to all corners of the world and won the divine pleasure and good praise: “The first forerunners [in the faith] among the emigrants and the Helpers and those who followed them with good conduct, Allah is pleased with them and they are pleased with Him; He has prepared for them gardens beneath which rivers flow, wherein they will abide forever. That is the great attainment” (the Quran, 9: 100).
It was a generation decreed to make the difference and change life. They bore the torch of light to all humankind. It is beyond our abilities to realize their merits. However, it is sufficient to know that if we give a great deal in charity as huge as the mount of Uhud, it is even less than a handful or half of a handful of the Prophets’ Companions; the Prophet said, “Do not abuse my Companions, for by the One in Whose Hand is my soul, if any of you would have spent as much gold as Uhud Mount, it would not equal a Mudd or even half a Mudd of one of them” (al-Bukhari and Muslim).
They undertook the burdens of promoting the religion and paid the ultimate sacrifice in that cause to support Allah and His Prophet (may Allah’s Peace and Blessings be upon him): “Indeed, Allah has purchased from the believers their lives and their properties in exchange for that they will have Paradise. They fight in the cause of Allah, so they kill and are killed; it is a true promise He made in the Torah, the Gospel and the Quran. And who is truer to his covenant than Allah? So rejoice in your commitment which you have made. Such is the great success” (the Quean, 9: 111).
It is the Prophet’s right upon us to read his biography and follow his example and law. Likewise, we shall read the biographies and know the merits and virtues of the Prophet’s Companions to follow their ideal ethics and obedience to Allah. Their life is rich with useful lessons and reminders. Actually, Allah chose them as the best group to accompany his Prophet and promote his message. They are divienly decreed to be the best and most perfect of all Muslims. Unprecedenetd in piety and devotion, the human history never knew their like—as they are the first forerunners and the closest to Allah’s Pleasure (the Quran, 56: 10-14).
In celebration of their high status and merits, Allah honored their company of his Prophet in the Divine Word “Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah; and those with him are forceful against the disbelievers, merciful among themselves. You see them bowing and prostrating in prayers, seeking the grace and pleasure of Allah. Their mark is on their foreheads from the trace of prostration. That is their description in the Torah. And their description in the Gospel is as a plant which produces its offshoots and strengthens them so they grow firm and stand upon their stalks, delighting the farmers, so Allah may enrage by them the disbelievers. Allah has promised those who believe and do righteous deeds among them forgiveness and a great reward” (the Quran, 48: 29).
This verse dceclares them true believers, sincere servants and dedicated worshippers who are frequently bowing and prostrating in prayers. They only seek the grace from Allah and the worship left marks on their bodies. You can easily identify them by their fear and love of Allah. That is why they won the divine pleasure—the greatest of graces: “Surely, Allah was pleased with the believers when they pledged allegiance to you under the tree; He knew what was in their hearts, so He sent down tranquility upon them and rewarded them with an imminent conquest” (the Quran, 48: 18).
If we reflect on the Sunnah of the Beloved Prophet, we have several indications to their great excellence, high position and loftiness. The following are just examples of these prophetic statements:
- “The best of my people are those of my generation. Then those succeeding them, then those succeeding them, then people would come whose witness would precede their oath and their oath will precede their witness” (al-Bukhari and Muslim). Simply, they are the best in faith, advocacy and console of the Prophet (may Allah’s Peace and Blessings be upon him).
- Imam Ahmad narrated that Ibn Mas‘ūd (may Allah be pleased with him) said, “Allah looked into the hearts of His servants, and found that the heart of Muhammad is the purest of all, so He chose him for Himself and sent him with His message. Then He looked into the hearts of His servants, next to the heart of Muhammad, and He found that the hearts of his companions were the best of people’s hearts, so He made them supporters of His Prophet, who defended His religion. So whatever the Muslims think is good is divinely good and whatever they think is bad is divinely bad.”
- The Prophet (may Allah’s Peace and Blessings be upon him) described them as the source of Muslim security, as he said, “The stars are a source of security for the sky; when the stars disappear there comes to the sky what has been promised (of dooms). And I am a source of safety and security to my Companions and when I would go away there would befall my Companions) what they have been promised and my Companions are a source of security for my people and when they would go there would fall my people what they have been promised” (Muslim). The Companions were the source of relief from heresies; their blessings extended to bless two successive generations.
- Abu Sa‘īd al-Khudri narrated that the Prophet (may Allah’s Peace and Blessings be upon him) said, “Time will come when a group of people will wage a war and it will be said, ‘Do you have with you anyone who has accompanied Allah’s Messenger? They will say, ‘Yes’; and then victory will be given to them. Then a time will come when a group of people will wage a war and it will be said, ” Do you have with you anyone who has accompanied the companions of Allah’s Messenger?’ They will say, ‘Yes and then victory will be given to them. A time then comes when a group of people will wage a war, and it will be said, ” Do you have with you anyone who has been in the company of the companions of the companions of Allah’s Messenger?’ They will say, ‘Yes; and victory will be given to them” (al-Bukhari and Muslim).
- Allah also testifies to their benevolence, generosity and struggle in pursuit of Allah’s pleasure. Allah promised them eternal paradise: “But the Messenger and those who believed with him fought with their wealth and their lives. Those will have all that is good, and it is those who are the successful (88) Allah has prepared for them gardens beneath which rivers flow, wherein they will abide eternally. That is the great Success” (the Quran, 9: 88-89).
- ‘Umar (may Allah be pleased with him) said, “Once the Prophet commanded us to give in charity. Meanwhile, I had some property; I thought it was time to surpass Abu Bakr in a good deed. I brought half my property. The Messenger of Allah asked: What did you leave for your family? I replied: The same amount. Abu Bakr brought all that he had. The Messenger of Allah asked him: What did you leave for your family? He replied: I left Allah and His Prophet for them. I said: I shall never compete you in anything” (al-Tirmidhi).
- The love of the Prophet’s Companions is a sign of firm faith and true love of the Prophet (may Allah’s Peace and Blessings be upon him), as He said, “[I emphatically command you to fear] Allah regarding my Companions; do not make them objects of insults after me. Whoever loves them, it is out of love of me that he loves them. But whoever hates them, it is out of hatred for me that he hates them. Whoever harms them has harmed me and whoever harms me has offended Allah; whoever offends Allah shall soon be punished” (al-Tirmidhi and Ahmad from ‘Abdullah Ibn Mughaffal).
- The Prophet (may Allah’s Peace and Blessings be upon him) even made the lover of al-Ansaar a sign of faith and their hate a sign of hypocrisy: Al-Barā’ Ibn ‘Azib narrated that the Prophet (may Allah’s Peace and Blessings be upon him) said in respect of al-Ansaar: “None loves the Ansaar but a believer, and none hates them but a hypocrite. So Allah will love him who loves them, and He will hate him who hates them” (al-Bukhari and Muslim). Anas Ibn Malik also narrated that the Prophet (may Allah’s Peace and Blessings be upon him) said: “Love for the Ansaar is a sign of faith and hatred for the Ansaar is a sign of hypocrisy” (al-Bukhari).
For the Sharia, abusing the Prophet’s Companions is strictly forbidden; Abu Hurayrah (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated that the Prophet said: “Do not abuse my Companions! Do not abuse my Companions! By the One in Whose Hand is my soul, if any of you would have spent as much gold as Uhud Mount, it would not equal a Mudd or even half a Mudd of one of them” (Muslim).” ‘Abdullah Ibn ‘Umar further said, “Do not abuse the Companions of Muhammad; an hour of anyone of them is better than a forty-year worship of anyone of you” (Ahmad in Fadā’il al-Sahabah). We have to respect and honor them in recognition of their lofty position and merits.
The life of the Prophet’s Companions personified the grandness of faith and sincere love of Allah and His Prophet. It was a real translation of the high morals; they proved the best leaders in sacrifice and giving and the best masters of generosity, knowledge and good deeds. As such, the proved truthful: “For the poor emigrants who were expelled from their homes and their properties, seeking bounty from Allah and [His] approval and supporting Allah and His Messenger, [there is also a share]. Those are the truthful” (the Quran, 59: 8). Outstanding examples include the following:
- ‘Ali Ibn Abi Taleb (may Allah be pleased with him) spelt in the Prophet’s bed at the Night of Migration exposing his life to grave dangers while knowing that the polytheists besieging the house to kill him.
- Suhayb, the Roman, (may Allah be pleased with him) also sacrificed his wealth in support of the Religion and the Prophet (may Allah’s Peace and Blessings be upon him). When Suhayb t decided on migration to Medina, the disbelievers followed him. They insulted him claiming that he had come to Mecca as a worthless tramp, but their town was gracious enough and thanks to them he managed to make a good deal of wealth. They gave orders that he would not leave. Seeing this, he offered a compromise to give away all his wealth to them, so they let him depart peacefully; they eventually agreed to release him on condition of giving away his wealth for them. Arriving at Medina, the Prophet gave him good tidings, “The bargain proved lucrative, Abu Yahya! the bargain proved lucrative, Abu Yahya i.e. the nickname of Suhayb.” Allah I then revealed, “And there is the type of man who gives his life to earn the pleasure of Allah. And Allah is truly kind to His servants” (the Quran, 2: 207) (Ibn Hibban in his authentic collection).
- Abu Bakr (may Allah be pleased with him) gave the best moral example and noble ethics. Abu Hurayrah (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated that the Prophet (may Allah’s Peace and Blessings be upon him) said: “Who amongst you is fasting today? Abu Bakr said: I am. He again said: Who amongst you followed a funeral procession today? Abu Bakr said: I did. The Prophet again said: Who amongst you served food to the needy? Abu Bakr said: I did. The Prophet said: Who amongst you has today visited the sick? Abu Bakr said: I did. Thereupon, the Prophet said: Anyone in whom these good deeds are combined will certainly enter paradise” (Muslim).
- ‘Umar Ibn al-Khattab (may Allah be pleased with him) once went out at night when he passed by a woman and her children; she had a pot on the fire. The children were crying. ‘Umargreeted her with peace and she replied. He did not like to say: “O people of fire, so he called them: O people of light, may I come closer? he asked. ‘Come closer or leave us, she responded. ‘Umar drew closer and asked: ‘What is the matter? We are detained by the night and the cold,’ she replied. Why are the children crying? ‘Umar inquired. She said, “They are hungry.” What are you cooking,’ ‘Umar persisted in asking. There is only water boiling until the children fall Allah will judge between me and ‘Umar, the woman said, unaware of the one with she was speaking.
‘Umar immediately went to the state granary and put together the necessary provisions in a bag, and said, ‘Put it on my back, O Aslam.’ I objected and said, ‘I will carry it on your behalf.’ ‘Will you carry my burden for me on the Day of Resurrection?’ he wondered. I placed the load on his back, Aslam said, and he carried it to the woman. ‘Umar placed some flour into the pot and added some fat. He blew at the fire until smoke came out of his thick beard. He took off the pot from the fire when the food was ready. He said: ‘Let me have a plate.’ When the plate was brought, he dished the food and placed it in front of the children. ‘Eat,’ he said to them and the children ate until they are full. They kept praying for ‘Umar, unaware of his identity, saying that he is worthier of the emirate than ‘Umar! ‘Umar stayed with them until the children fell asleep. He gave them the remaining provision and then took leave of them saying: Say good when you visit the Commander of the Believers. On the way, he turned to me and said: ‘O Aslam, hunger kept them awake and made them cry; I loved to keep their company until I see in them what I just saw. I did not like to leave them unless I see them in comfort (Imam Ahmad Fada’il al-Sahabah).
Female Companions also have great situations of giving and support of Allah’s religion. The following situations are exemplary of their contributions:
- Khadijah (may Allah be pleased with her), the Mother of the Believers, had a great role in the promotion of Islam and defense of her husband i.e. the Prophet, for whom she paid the ultimate sacrifice and consoled him. She gave him a comforting message saying, “By Allah, Allah will never disgrace you, for by Allah, you keep good relations with your Kith and kin, speak the truth, help the poor and the destitute, entertain your guests generously and assist those who are stricken with calamities” (al-Bukhari).
- She was so loyal to the Prophet (may Allah’s Peace and Blessings be upon him) that he kept her praise after her death. ‘Aishah (may Allah be pleased with her) narrated that the Prophet well praised Khadijah (may Allah be pleased with her) whenever her name was mentioned. One day, I felt jealous and said. What makes you remember an old teethless woman of red gums, who died long ago while Allah replaced you with a better one? In reply, Allah has not replaced me with a better than she; she had faith in my message when people disbelieved, believed me when people belied and aided me with her wealth when people deprived me, and Allah gave her children from her to the exclusion of other women” (Ahmad).
- Nusaybah Bint Ka‘b al-Ansaariyyah (may Allah be pleased with her) also sets a good example to follow. The Prophet (may Allah’s Peace and Blessings be upon him) said, “During the battle of Uhud, I did not turn right or left but I had seen Um ‘Umarah fighting to defend me.” Someone came in determination to kill the Prophet but whenever he wanted to pierce the Prophet, she confronted him. He kept hitting her with the sword until her shoulder blade was badly damaged. The Prophet (may Allah’s Peace and Blessings be upon him) said, “What a grave pain you endure, Um ‘Umarah! In reply, she said: I can endure more and more and more, O Prophet. He responded, “Ask me for anything, Um ‘Umarah! She said, “I want to accompany you in Paradise.” The Prophet responded, “You are not alone but you and your family will be with me.” I do not care what may befall me in this world after that, she said. (Siyar A‘lam al-Nubalā’)
- If we really seek for progress, advancement, salvation and divine pleasure in this world and in the hereafter, we shall follow the brilliant examples of the Prophet’s Companions in life and ethics. The Prophet encourages us to follow in their footsteps saying, “I urge you to adhere to my Sunnah and the path of the Rightly-Guided Caliphs, and hold fats to that; beware of newly-invented matters, for every innovation is a way of misguidance” (Ibn Majah from al-‘Irbād Ibn Sariyah, may Allah be pleased with him).
We have to take lessons and clue children and women in the noble morals of the honorable Companions, and the way they followed the Prophet and sacrificed their lives and wealth in support of the religion.
- The Importance of Family in Islam
- The Islamic Way to Family Stability
- Good Choice of One’s Spouse
- Care for Rights and Duties
- Love and Mercy
- Kind Treatment
- Fairness to Children
- The Impact of Family Stability on the Society
Islam paid due care for the family; it is the nuclear unit of society. When the family is good, the whole society is good and vice versa. Islam sets specific standards and criteria for family organization, safety and stability to maintain humankind and society. Islam even cares for the earlier decisions that help the creation of families. As such, Islam encourages Muslims to build families on mutual love and mercy with a view to protecting the family from destruction and fall. It shall be legally formed through marriage to maintain human dignity and sound nature. Indeed, marriage is a natural phenomenon in the universe; Allah said, “And of all things, We have created two mates—male and female; perhaps you will remember” (the Quran, 51: 49). Allah, the Almighty, also says, “Exalted is He who created all pairs – from what the earth grows and from themselves and from that which they do not know” (the Quran, 36: 36).
Marriage is a universal norm and a marvelous sign of Allah’s greatness: “It is of His signs that He created for you from yourselves mates that you may find tranquility in them; and He placed between you affection and mercy. Indeed in that are signs for a people who give thought” (the Quran, 30: 21). Therefore, family formation and stability form the Islamic way to build civilization and promote the social and national welfare. Family formation promotes chastity and virtue, protects the society from profane practices and vices, and brings families together through the ties of family relations among other noble wisdoms and purposes.
Allah, the Almighty, says, “And marry the unmarried among you and the righteous among your male slaves and female slaves. If they should be poor, Allah will enrich them from His bounty, and Allah is All-Encompassing and Knowing. (32) But let them who find no means for marriage abstain from sexual relations until Allah enriches them from His bounty. And those who seek a contract for emancipation from among whom your right hands possess—then make a contract with them if you know there is within them goodness and give them from the wealth of Allah which He has given you. And do not compel your slave girls to prostitution, if they desire chastity, to seek [thereby] the temporary interests of worldly life. And if someone should compel them, then indeed, Allah is [to them], after their compulsion, Forgiving and Merciful” (the Quran, 24: 32-33).
Likewise, the Prophet (may Allah’s Peace and Blessings be upon him) encouraged the youths to marry and said, “O young men, those among you who can support a wife should marry. Indeed, marriage restrains eyes (from casting evil glances) and preserves one from immorality; but he who cannot afford It should observe fast for it is a means of controlling the sexual desire” (al-Bukhari and Muslim).
Islam discourages all ideas and practices that go against the cultivation and settlement of the universe including celibacy and castration. Sa‘d Ibn Abi Waqqas said, “The Prophet (may Allah’s Peace and Blessings be upon him) disapproved of ‘Uthman Ibn Maz’un’s desire to remain celibate; if he had given him permission, we would have gotten ourselves castrated” (al-Bukhari).
Narrated Anas Ibn Malik (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated that a group of three men came to the houses of the wives of the Prophet (may Allah’s Peace and Blessings be upon him) asking about his worship. When they were informed of that, they considered their worship insufficient and said, “Where are we from the Prophet; his past and future sins have been forgiven.” One of them said, “I will pray throughout the night forever.” The other said, “I will fast throughout the year and will not break my fast.” The third said, “I will keep away from women and will not marry forever.” When Allah’s Messenger came, he said, “Are you the same people who said so-and-so? By Allah, I am the most pious and afraid of Allah than you all; yet I fast and break my fast, I do sleep and marry women. Then, he who does not follow my way in religion does not belong to me” (al-Bukhari).
Family stability is a legally as well as worldly required aim. As such, Islam puts the true foundations and principles for the family to maintain marital affection and love. These principles include the following:
- The right choice of one’s partner; the Prophet (may Allah’s Peace and Blessings be upon him) encourages men to choose the right wives, for they are the educators of generations and the keepers of wealth and honor. Indeed, the good wife is the best of world’s pleasures as narrated by ‘Abdullah Ibn ‘Amr from the Prophet: “This world is but a quick passing pleasure and the best of its pleasures is the good wife.” Good choice of one’s partner leads to serenity, stability, constant love and mutual mercy. Only then, marriage personifies the best grace and blessing.
- This choice must be based on religion and good ethics. Abu Hurayrah (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated that the Prophet said, “A woman is chosen as a wife for four reasons: wealth, family, beauty and religion; so win the religious woman; it is enough riches to you” (al-Bukhari). The narration of Ahmad adds, “Win the woman noted for her religion and ethics.” A wife has a great role in paying due care for the family; a good wife is the source for the stability of the family and community but a corrupt wife lead to destruction. The poet rightly said,
A mother is a school, when rightly prepared—a complete illustrious nation is prepared
- The Prophet also advises women to choose their husbands on the basis on religion and ethics. Abu Hatim al-Muzani (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated that the Prophet said, “When someone, whose religion and ethics are satisfactory, proposes [to marry any of your women], then marry her to him; otherwise, a grave chaos and corruption will take place. They said, “O Messenger of Allah, what if there is something with him? He replied, “When someone, whose religion and ethics are satisfactory, proposes [to marry any of your women], then marry her to him,” he repeated it three times” (al-Tirmidhi). In short, religion and good ethics are the basic characteristics of both men and women for the welfare and progress of families.
- Family members must respect rights and duties of one another. Each one shall do his/her duties before asking for one’s rights. Love, mercy and serenity can thus come true. Some of these rights are physical and others are moral and educational. They include the constructive participation in responsibilities and cooperation of all members to meet the needs of the family. ‘Abdullah Ibn ‘Umar (may Allah be pleased with him) heard the Prophet (may Allah’s Peace and Blessings be upon him) saying: “Everyone is a guardian and is responsible for what is in his custody; the ruler is a guardian of his people and is responsible for them; a husband is a guardian of his family and is responsible for them. Likewise, a woman is a guardian of her husband’s house and is responsible for it and a servant is a guardian of his master’s property and is responsible for it. Al-Zuhri said, “I think that ‘Abdullah added that the Prophet said, “The man is a custodian of the wealth of his father and he would be responsible for what is in his custody. Yet, everyone is a guardian and is responsible for what is in his custody” (al-Bukhari). The Prophet (may Allah’s Peace and Blessings be upon him) also said, “It is sufficient sin for a man that he neglects him whom he maintains” (Ahmad from ‘Abdullah Ibn ‘Amr).
- One of the Companions once asked the Prophet (may Allah’s Peace and Blessings be upon him): O Messenger of Allah, what is the right of a wife over a husband? He replied, “You should give her food when you eat, clothe her when you clothe yourself, do not strike her on the face, do not revile her or separate yourself from her except in the house” (Abu Dawud).
- Asmaa Bint Yazid al-Ansariyyah (may Allah be pleased with her) once asked the Prophet (may Allah’s Peace and Blessings be upon him) saying, “We, women, are limited and constrained, though we are the pillars of your houses and with us you fulfill your desires and lusts, and we carry your children. Indeed, you men have been favored over us by congregational Friday prayers and all other congregational prayers, visits of the sick, funeral prayers, performing hajj successively and better than all indeed is the jihad in the way of Allah. When anyone of you goes out for hajj, ‘umrah or jihad, we protect your wealth, spin you garments and raise your children. Shall we not share with you the same recompense and reward? The Prophet turned to his Companions and said, “Have you ever heard a better speech of a woman said, which is more beautiful than this woman’s questioning regarding the affairs of her religion?” They said, “O Messenger of Allah, we never thought that a woman should be guided to something like this.” The Prophet turned to her and said, “You can go now and tell women behind you that a woman’s good treatment with her husband, seeking his pleasure and following him is equal in reward to all that. She left while proclaiming tahleel (La Ilaha Illa Allahe. there is no god but Allah) and Takbīr (Allah Akbar i.e. Allah is the Great), in expression of her happiness. (Shu‘ab al-Imān).
- Mutual mercy is also essential for a happy and successful family. Allah, the Almighty, says, “It is of His signs that He created for you from yourselves mates that you may find tranquility in them; and He placed between you affection and mercy. Indeed in that are signs for a people who give thought” (the Quran, 30: 21). The dominance of mercy in the community is conditional upon the promotion of mercy in the family. The Prophet set the optimal example in good treatment with his wives, children, grandchildren and servants. He was the best to his family. When a family is deprived of mercy, it leads life to destruction. All members of the family must work seriously to achieve mercy.
- Kind treatment is another principle for family welfare and stability (the Quran, 4: 19); both spouses shall be kind to one another in warm intimacy and cooperation. Portraying this intimate relationship, Allah says, “They are clothing for you and you are clothing for them” (the Quran, 2: 187). He also says, “It is of His signs that He created for you from yourselves mates that you may find tranquility in them; and He placed between you affection and mercy” (the Quran, 30: 21).
- Nice word, kind behavior, tolerance, cooperation, respect, counseling, preservation of secrets and avoiding ways to disputes and difference are all essential for good treatment. The Prophet (may Allah’s Peace and Blessings be upon him) and his Companions set the best example of good treatment as narrated by al-Aswad that he asked ‘Aishah (may Allah be pleased with her): What did the Prophet use to do at home? She replied that he used to keep himself busy serving his family until it was time for prayers when he would get up for prayer (al-Bukhari).
- Ibn ‘Abbas (may Allah be pleased with him) said: “I like to beautify myself for my wife just like I love that she beautifies herself for me because Allah says, “And due to them is similar to what is expected of them, according to what is reasonable” (the Quran, 2: 228). However, I do not like to take all my rights due on her, because Allah says, “But the men have a degree over them” (the Quran, 2: 228) (Ibn Abi Shaybah, al-Musannaf).
- It is a sign of kindness not to burden one’s marital partner with your problems. Kindness is inclusive of all meanings of good marital life. Islam is keen to build the marital bond on love, mutual understanding and harmony as the foremost step to reform the society.
- Mutual consultation is also necessary between the spouses for greater friendship and love even in usual matters such as the weaning of their child. Allah, the Almighty, says, “And if they both desire weaning through mutual consent and consultation, there is no blame upon either of them” (the Quran, 2: 233). Consultation between spouses as well as other members of the family personifies the right approach of our Islamic religion. Commanding consultation is generally declared to all, as Allah says, “And those who have responded to their lord and established prayer and whose affair is determined by mutual consultation, and from what We have provided them, they spend” (the Quran, 42: 38). It is also the tradition of the Prophet as he used to consult his wives. For example, on the Day of al-Hudaybiyyah, he consulted his wife Um Salamah (may Allah be pleased with her).
- After concluding the peace treaty, the Prophet said to his companions, “Get up and slaughter your sacrifices and get your head shaved. In response, the narrator said: By Allah no one got up. The Prophet repeated his order three times. When no one got up, he left them to Um Salamah and told her of people’s negative response. Um Salamah said, “O Prophet of Allah, do you want your order to be carried out? Go out and do not say a word to anybody till you have slaughtered your sacrifice and call your barber to shave your head.” The Prophet did not talk to anyone of them till he did that. Seeing that, the companions got up, slaughtered their sacrifices and started shaving the heads of one another. There was so much rush that there was a danger of killing each other (al-Bukhari). Al-Hasan al-Basri (may Allah be pleased with him) said: The Prophet was in no need to consult Um Salamah but he wanted people to follow his example and thus men find no qualm in consulting women.
- Providing for one’s family is also essential for stable family life; all members are entitled to receive enough provision. It is a right that Islam imposes upon the man, as Allah, the Almighty, says, “Men are in charge of women by [right of] what Allah has given one over the other and what they spend [for maintenance] from their wealth” (the Quran, 4: 34). Allah, the Almighty, also says, “Upon the father is their [i.e., the mothers’] provision and their clothing according to what is acceptable. No person is charged with more than his capacity. No mother should be harmed because of her child or father because of his child. And upon the father’s heir is a duty equal to that of the father” (the Quran, 2: 233). Allah, the Almighty, also says, “Let a man of wealth spend from his wealth, and he whose provision is restricted – let him spend from what Allah has given him. Allah does not charge a soul except [according to] what He has given it” (the Quran, 65: 7).
- Fairness to all family members and educating the children the rites of religion are also indispensible. The Prophet even forewarned against unfair treatment with one’s children. Al-Nu‘mān Ibn Basheer (may Allah be pleased with him) said: “My father donated to me some of his property. My mother ‘Amrah Bint Rawahah said: I shall not be pleased until you make Allah’s Messenger a witness to that. My father went to the Prophet in order to make him the witness of the donation he gave to me. The Prophet said, “Have you done the same with all of your children?” He said: “ Thereupon the Prophet said: Fear Allah, and be just to your children. My father returned and got back the gift” (Muslim).
- For Islam, family is deeply respected and honored. It is a sacred bond that aims at achieving several high purposes. Islam is keen to keep it strong and coherent to achieve these purposes and overcome challenges and problems. Islam introduces many morals to preserve the structure of the family strong, keep the society stable and protect it from extremism, intransigence and aggression. As such, Islam cares much for family formation and stability to help the building of good social relations and achieve progress and welfare.
- When the family is stable, all members feel psychologically, physically, socially and economically safe, and thus the whole society is safe. For Islam, family stability is an effective way to bring about societal security and escape chaos and corruption. Family is the key builder of societal security and next to it come the school and the community.
Family is the first school in which a child knows the right from the wrong, the good from the evil, and learns responsibility and freedom of opinion. It forms the main features and identity of a child to become a good citizen. Security is not imposed by powers; it is maintained by the conscience of the members in the society. Actually, family plays the key role in the formation of conscience in all members.