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1. "And He it is Who has created man from the water, and He has made for him blood-relationship and marriage-relationship" (25:54). 2. "And marry those among you who are single" (24:32) 3. "Do not prevent them (the divorced women) from marrying their husbands when they agree among themselves in a lawful manner" (2:232). 4. "And they (your wives) have made with you a firm covenant" (4:21). 5. "He it is Who created you from a single being, and of the same kind did He make his mate that he might incline to her" (7:189). 6. "And one of His signs is that He created mates for you from yourselves that you may find quiet of mind in them and He put between you love and compassion" (30:21). 7. "He made mates for you from among yourselves ........... multiplying you thereby" (42:11). 8. "And the chaste from among the believing women and the chaste from among those who have been given the Book before you are lawful for you when you have given them their dowries, taking them in marriage, not fornicating, nor taking them for paramours in secret" (5:5). 9. "Forbidden to you are your mothers, and your daughters, and your sisters, and your paternal aunts, and your maternal aunts, and brothers' daughters, and sisters' daughters, and your mothers that have suckled you, and your foster-sisters. and mothers of your wives, and your step-daughters who are in your guardianship born of your wives to whom you have gone in--but if you have not gone in to them, there is no blame on you--and the wives of your sons who are of your own loins, and that you should have two sisters together except what has already passed...........and all married women except those whom your right hands possess" (4:23, 24). 10. "And give women their dowries as a free gift but if they of themselves be pleased to give you a portion of them, then eat it with enjoyment and with wholesome result" (4:4). 11. "And you have given one of them a heap of gold, take not from it anything" (4:20). 12. "There is no blame on you about what you mutually agree after what is appointed of dowry. (4:24). 13. "And if you fear that you cannot act equitably towards orphans, marry such women as seem good to you, two and three and four; but if you fear that you will not do justice between them, then (marry) only one or what your right hands possess. (4:3). 14. "And whoever among you has not within his power ampleness of means to marry free believing women, (he may marry) of those whom your right hands possess from among your believing maidens............So marry them with the permission of their masters and give them their dowries justly" (4:25). The Arabic word for marriage is nikâh which means, originally 'aqd or uniting. It is recognised in Islâm as the basis of human society, and marriage-relationship is given the same importance as blood-relationship (v. 1). Celibate life its against the teachings of the Holy Qurân which requires every Muslim to live in a married state (v. 2: h. 1), Castration is forbidden (hh. 2, 3), Marriage is a sacred contract (v. 4), which a man and a woman enter into by mutual agreement (v. 3). It is a contract entered into for life, temporary marriage being forbidden (h. 4). It serves a double purpose, being the means of the moral uplift of man and the means of the multiplication. of the human race (vv. 5-7). Marriage may be contracted with a non-Muslim woman (v. 8). It is prohibited within certain degrees of relationship (v. 9). The rule is the marriage of one man with one woman, but in exceptional cases a man may marry up to four women (v. 13). Marriage with slave-girls was allowed in case a man had not the means to marry a free woman (v. 14). Marriage should be preceded by a proposal (h. 5). It is recommended that before making a proposal, a man should satisfy himself as to the desirability of the match (hh. 6, 7). The guardian must obtain the woman's consent (h. 8); where a woman was given in marriage by tier father and she disliked the match, the marriage was annulled (b. g). Marriage among equals is recommended, but all Muslims being equal there is no limitation as to the choice of the mate (b. 10). Nobility of character is the most valuable gift of a woman which should be taken into consideration in marrying her (b. 11). A dowry must be settled upon the woman, there being no limitation as to the amount (vv. 10, 11; h. 5): it may be increased or decreased by mutual consent after marriage (v. 12). Any conditions may be laid down at the time of marriage. so long as they are not against the law of Islâm (h. 12). Shighâr is prohibited (h. 13). The marriage must be publicly proclaimed, and it is recommended that it should be held in a public place and announced with the beat of duff, a musical instrument (h. 14). The contract is sanctified by a sermon before the parties announce their acceptance (h. 15). Gatherings on the occasion of marriage are also a means of making it publicly known (h. 16). Music is allowed at the marriage ceremony (h. 17). Gifts may also be given on this occasion (h. 18). A feast is recommended when the bride comes to the husband's house (hh. 19, 20), Prayer to God for Divine blessings is recommended at the first meeting of the husband and the wife (h. 21). Birth-control is allowed when it becomes a necessity (hh. 22, 23). When a baby is born, adhân must be called out into its ears (h. 24), and the naming and the tahnîk follow (h. 25). 'Aqîqah must also be performed if one can afford (hh. 26-28). 1 'Alqamah said, While I was going along with 'Abd Allâh, he said, We were with the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allâh be on him, and he said: "He who is able to marry should marry, for it keeps the eye cast down and keeps a man chaste; and he who cannot, should take to fasting, for it will have a castrating effect upon him.[1] (B. 30:10.) [1. Marriage is here recognised as a means of moral elevation and spiritual exaltation. Fasting has a castrating effect inasmuch as the carnal passions are thereby subdued. According to another hadîth, marriage is recognised as the Sunnah of the Holy Prophet, and it is added; "He who abstains from my Sunnah is not of me." (B. 67:l.)] 2 Ibn Mas'ûd said, We used to fight along with the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allâh be on him, and we had not (our) wives (with us); so we said, May we not castrate, O Messenger of Allâh? And he forbade us doing so.[2] (B. 67:64) 3 Sa'd said, The Messenger of Allâh, peace and blessings of Allâh be on him, repudiated Uthmân ibn Maz'ûn's remaining celibate, and if he had permitted him, we would have been emasculated. (B. 67:8.) 4 'Alî reported, The Messenger of Allâh, peace and blessings of Allâh be on him, forbade temporary marriage with women, and the eating of domestic asses. on the day of Khaibar.[3] (B. 64:40.) [3 So in Islâm there are no eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven. On the other hand, marrying and keeping oneself chaste is a means of attaining the kingdom of heaven. 4. The technical word for temporary marriage is mut'ah. It is derived from matâ' meaning profiting for a long time. Mut'ah is considered to be a legal form of marriage by the Shî'ahs, but the vast majority of the Muslim community {footnote } rejects it on the basis of the hadîth quoted here. The Holy Qur'ân uses the word ihsân (lit. being inaccessible) for marriage, and thus looks upon marriage as a permanent relation which can be cutoff only by divorce. For all other kinds of sexual relationship it uses the word safâh, which signifies fornication According to some hadîth, mut'ah was allowed by the Holy Prophet in a war. Even if this be true, it may have been allowed at an earlier stage, reform having been brought about gradually, but there is not the least doubt that it was finally disallowed.] 5 'Â'ishah reported, In the pre-Islamic times marriage was in four ways; one of these being as the people's marriage to-day, a man asking another man for marriage with his ward or his daughter, then he settles on her a dowry, then marries her.[4] (B 67:37.) 6 Jâbir said, The Messenger of Allâh, peace and blessings of Allâh be on him, said When one of you asks a woman in marriage, then if he is able that he should look into what invites him to have her in marriage, he should do it." (AD. 12:17.) [4. Khitbah or asking a woman in marriage is a preliminary stage. The dowry to be settled on the woman must then be agreed upon. There is no limitation {footnote } to this amount; it may be a heap of gold (v. 11), or it may be a ring of iron, or even service rendered to the woman in teaching her (B. 67:51). In fact, the amount of the dowry depends on the circumstances of the contracting parties.] 7 Mughîrah reported, He made a proposal of marriage to a woman, and the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allâh be on him, said: "See her, for this is more likely to bring about agreement between you." (Tr. 9:5.) 8 Abû Hurairah reported, The Prophet, peace and blessings of Allâh be on him, said "The widow shall not be married until she is consulted, and the virgin shall not be married until her consent is obtained." They said, O Messenger of Allâh! How shall her consent be obtained? He said. "(It is sufficient) that she remains silent."[5] (B. 67:42.) [5. Hh. 8 and 9 show that a woman must be given in marriage by her guardian; but the guardian, whether father or anyone else must obtain the woman's consent. As many hadîth show, a woman is at liberty to offer her hand to anyone, and Bukhârî heads one of his chapters as follows: "A woman offering herself for marriage to a virtuous man" (B. 67:33 ). In such a case, the state is considered to be the guardian (B. 67:41).] 9 Khansâ' reported, Her father gave her away in marriage, and she was a thayyib, and she did not like it. So she came to the Messenger of Allâh, peace and blessings of Allâh be on him, and he annulled her marriage.[6] (B. 67:43.) 10 'Â'ishah said, The Messenger of Allâh, peace and blessings of Allâh be on him, said: "Select (fit) women (in respect of character) for your seed, and marry (your) equals and give (your daughters) in marriage to them."[7] (IM. 9:46.) 11 Abû Hurairah reported, The Prophet, peace and blessings of Allâh be on him, said: "A woman is married on account of four things; [6. Thus the woman has the choice of repudiating a marriage to which she is not a consenting party. The word thayyib includes both a woman whose husband has died and a woman who has been divorced. 7. Marriage must be contracted so far as possible between equals. This is technically known as marriage in kuf' or kufu' (pl. akfâ'). Bukhârî explains this by heading his chapter as "Al-Akfa fi-l-dîn" (67:16), or Equals in religion; making it clear that all Muslims are equal in one sense. There are examples recorded in Hadîth in which a woman of the high family of Quraish was married to a slave or a freed slave (B. 64: 12).] on account of her wealth, and on account of (the nobility of) her family, and her beauty, and on account of her character,[8] so attain success with the one possessing nobility of character." (B . 67: 16.) 12 'Uqbah said, The Messenger of Allâh, peace and blessings of Allâh be on him, said: "The conditions which are most worthy that you should fulfil are those with which you legalize sexual relations."[9] (B. 54:6.) 13 Ibn 'Umar reported, The Messenger of Allâh, peace and blessings of Allâh be on him, forbade, shighâr; and shighâr is this that a man gives his daughter in marriage to another man on condition that the latter shall give his daughter in marriage to him, neither of them paying dowry.[10] (B. 67:29.) [8. Religion. in contrast with the other three, builds character, and hence the word din carries the significance of character here. 9. Any conditions which the parties agree upon may be laid down in the marriage contract, so long as they are not against the law. For instance, it is stated that a woman shall not impose a condition requiring the divorce of her sister (B. 67:54). 10. The dowry must be made over to the woman, and her father or guardian has no right to it. Hence shighâr is forbidden.] 14 'Â'ishah said, The Messenger of Allâh, peace and blessings of Allâh be on him, said: Make the marriage publicly known, and perform it in mosques, and beat at it with duff."[11] (Tr-Msh. 13:3.) 15 Abd Allâh said: 'The Messenger of Allâh, peace and blessings of Allâh be on him, taught us the marriage sermon (which is thus):[12] "All praise is due to Allâh; we beseech Him for help, and we ask for His protection, and we seek refuge in Him from the mischiefs of our souls; whomsoever Allâh guides, there is none who can lead him astray and whomsoever Allâh finds in error, there is none to guide him; [11. Duff or daff is the tambourine, and the object of beating with daff at marriage is to make it publicly known. It also furnishes a kind of music. 12. The khutbah or sermon at marriage helps the publicity of the marriage, and serves the double purpose of sanctifying the marriage contract and informing the parties of their responsibilities. The three verses of the Holy Qur'ân quoted in the sermon are 4:1 (a part), 3:101, and 33:70, 71. V. 4: 1 runs thus: {footnote } "O people! Be careful of your duty to your Lord. Who created you from a single being and created its mate of the same kind, and spread from these two many men and women; and be careful of your duty to Allâh by Whom you demand one of another your rights and to the ties of relationship; surely Allâh ever watches over you." The whole of this verse may be recited instead of the part given in the Hadîth. They all lay stress on carefulness to duty. and the person who delivers the sermon must expatiate on them to make the audience realize their import. The khutbah is followed by îjâb and qubûl, i.e.. the acceptance of the parties to the contract, and the amount of dowry is made publicly known. This is followed by a prayer by the whole gathering that the union may be blessed.] and I bear witness that there is no god but Allâh and that Muhammad is His servant and His Messenger. 'O you who believe! Be careful of your duty to Allâh, by Whom you demand one of another your rights, and to the ties of relationship; surely Allâh watches over you. 'O you who believe! Be careful of your duty to Allâh with the care which is due to him, and do not die unless you are Muslims.' 'O you who believe! Be careful of your duty to Allâh and speak the right word; He would put for you your deeds into a right state and forgive you your faults; and whoever obeys Allâh and His Messenger, he indeed achieves a mighty success." (AD. 12:3l.) 16 Anas said, The Prophet, peace and blessings of Allâh be on him, saw women and children coming from a wedding, so the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allâh be on him, stood up erect and said: "O Allâh! You are the most loved of all people to me." He said this three times.[13] (B. 63:5.) 17 'Â'ishah said, She conducted the bride to a man from among the Ansâr. And the [13 The nikâh was followed by a ceremony of conducting the bride to the bridegroom, called 'urs or 'urus, at which people gathered together, and thus it received additional publicity. The hadîth further shows the Holy Prophet's deep love for women and children. As these women and children were from among the Ansâr, the Hadîth is narrated by Bukhârî in a chapter dealing with "the love of the Ansâr."] Prophet of Allâh, peace and blessings of Allâh be on him, said, "O 'Â'ishah! Why had you no music with you, for the Ansâr love music?[14] (B. 67:64.) 18 Anas said, The Messenger of Allâh, peace and blessings of Allâh be on him, had Zainab conducted to him on the occasion of his marriage with her; so Umm Sulaim said to me, What i if we send a present to the Messenger of Allâh? peace and blessings of Allâh be on him, I said to her, Do it. So she took dates and butter and cheese, and made a preparation mingling them in a cooking-pot, and sent me with it to him. And I went with it to him, and he said, Place it (here[15])." (B. 67:65.) [14. The word used in the hadîth is lahw, which means a thing in which a man delights himself and which occupies him so as to divert him, and includes every diversion, pastime, sport or play. Here it means music. 15. Giving of presents at marriage is therefore in accordance with the Sunnah.] 19 Anas said, Zainab bint Jahsh was conducted as a bride to the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allâh be on him, and bread and meat were served, and I was sent to invite people to the feast. A party came and had the meal, then went out; then another party came and had the meal and went out; I went on thus inviting until I could not find any one whom I should invite.[16] (B. 65-33:8.) 20 Ibn 'Umar reported, The Messenger of Allâh, peace and blessings of Allâh be on him, said: "When one of you is invited to a marriage feast, he should go to it." (B. 67:72.) [16. This feast is called walimah and it is given by the bridegroom when the bride has been conducted to him. It is said to be derived from iltiyâm which means gathering together of two people.] 21 Ion 'Abbâs said, carrying it back to the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allâh be on him, (who) said: "If one of you, when he goes in to his wife, should say, 'In the name of Allâh; O Allâh! Ward off from us the Devil and ward off the Devil from that which Thou grantest us, then offspring is decreed for them, it (the Devil) will not harm it." (B. 4:8.) 22 Jâbir said, We used to resort to 'azl[17] in the time of the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allâh be on him, and the Qur'ân was then being revealed. (B. 67:97.) 23 Abû Sa'îd said, .... We resorted to 'azl, then we asked the Messenger of Allâh, peace and blessings of Allâh be on him, and he said: "What! Do you do it?" He said this thrice. "There is no soul that is [17. 'Azl was a birth-control device. It originally means putting a thing aside or away, and with reference to sexual relations, paulo ante emissionem (penem suum) extraxit, et extra vulvam semen emisit. It is allowed when conception is likely to endanger the woman's life or impair her health.] to be till the day of Resurrection but it will come into life." (B. 67:97) 24 Abû Râfi' said, I saw the Messenger of Allâh, peace and blessings of Allâh be on him, calling out adhân for prayer in the ear of Hasan ibn 'Alî, when Fâtimah gave birth to him.[18] (Tr-Msh. 19:1) 25 Abû Mûsâ said, A son was born to me and I brought him to the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allâh be on him, He named him Ibrâhîm, and he chewed a date and rubbed thereby his palate, and prayed for blessings for him and gave him back to me.[19] (B. 71:l.) [18. This is the first act with regard to a Muslim baby. The words of the adhân are repeated opposite the right ear, and the words of iqâmah opposite the left. The latter is based on a report in the Sharh al-Sunnah showing that 'Umar ibn 'Abd al-'Azîz followed this practice. The practice is traced back to the Holy Prophet in the Musnad of Abû Ya'lâ. The utterance of words relating to the unity and greatness of Allâh in the ears of a new-born baby shows that the Holy Prophet was aware of the existence of the sub-conscious mind. 19. The Arabic word is hannaka-hû. The word tahnîk is derived from hanak which means the interior of the upper part of the inside of the mouth, or the palate. The new-born baby is made to taste either a chewed date as in this case, or honey, by some elderly member of the family. The naming of the baby. the tahnîk and a prayer for him are thus the sunnah of the Holy Prophet.] 26 Salmân ibn 'Âmir said, I heard the Messenger of Allâh, peace and blessings of Allâh be on him, say: "In the case of the boy is 'aqîqah, so pour blood for him and remove from him the uncleanness."[20] (B. 71:2.) 27 Umm Kurz said, I heard the Messenger of Allâh, peace and blessings of Allâh be on him, say: "In the case of a boy, two goats, and in the case of a girl, one goat (should be sacrificed.)"[21] (Tr-Msh. 19:3.) 28 Ibn 'Abbâs said, The Messenger of Allâh, peace and blessings of Allâh be on him, sacrificed a ram each in the case of Hasan and Husain. (AD-Msh. 19:3.) [20. The word 'aqîqah is derived from 'aqqa meaning he clave, split or cut; and 'aqqa an waladi-hî signifies he slaughtered as a sacrifice for his child a sheep or a goat (on the seventh day after the birth). This is called 'aqîqah, but the word is also applied to the hair, of a young one recently born, that comes forth on his head in his mother's belly, the hair being shaved on the seventh day. It is in reference to this that the Hadîth speaks of removing of uncleanness. 21. This is the general practice, but as the next hadîth shows, one goat suffices in the case of the boy as well. It is only for those who can afford.]

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1 Sahil Badruddin = ""Perhaps nowhere was Muhammad’s struggle for economic redistribution and social egalitarianism more evident than in the rights and privileges he bestowed upon the women in his community. Beginning with the unbiblical conviction that men and women were created together and simultaneously from a single cell"-Reza Aslan, No god but God"
2 Enakshi Ganguly = ""Mehr is a Quranic right. A specific mention of this right is made in all subsequent legal texts...According to the Maliki school of Islamic law, a marriage without the stipulation of mehr is invalid...A woman has the right to impose conditions regarding her mehr...If the husband refuses to pay the prompt mehr upon marriage, the woman can refuse to fulfil her marital obligations including cohabitation. She is not bound to obey any of his commands. The wife is entitled to live separately and claim maintenance from her husband during this period."Economic Rights of Women in Islamic Law by Flavia AgnesChapter IV Verse III"
3 Enakshi Ganguly = "A child, especially a boy/male, is restricted from marrying his wet nurse, or the woman who fed him her milk. This woman may be different from the woman who gave birth to the child, and for that reasons, it is best to mention in the Hadith specific restrictions on who to marry and who to not. Rada"
4 Enakshi Ganguly = "The Marriage Process in Islam"
5 Enakshi Ganguly = ""In general, Muslim men are not permitted to marry non-Muslim women. "Do not marry unbelieving women until they believe. A slave woman who believes is better than an unbelieving woman, even though she allures you.... Unbelievers beckon you to the Fire. But Allah beckons by His Grace to the garden of bliss and forgiveness. And He makes His signs clear to mankind, that they may receive admonition" (Qur'an 2:221).An exception is made for Muslim men to marry chaste or pious Jewish and Christian women, who are referred to as "People of the Book." This comes from the understanding that Jews and Christians share similar religious outlooks - a belief in One God, following the commandments of Allah, a belief in revealed scripture (Books), etc. "This day are all things good and pure made lawful to you.... Lawful to you in marriage are not only chaste women who are believers, but chaste women among the People of the Book, revealed before your time, when you give them their due dowers, and desire chastity not lewdness. If any one rejects faith, fruitless is his work, and in the Hereafter he will be in the ranks of those who have lost" (Qur'an 5:5).The children of such a union are always to be raised in the faith of Islam. This should be discussed thoroughly by the couple before they decide to marry."Source: http://islam.about.com/od/marriage/a/interfaithmarriage.htm"