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Published on December 28th, 2014 | by Admin | Views:


Do women who cannot conceive children have less worth?

I am seriously losing faith in many of our brothers as a result of the mentality that they are growing up with. I thought Islam was meant to bring people out of their jahilliyah, especially brothers learned in the deen, but it seems like many are racists, perverts and misogynists, who have no understanding of justice.

The one issue that I have found most distasteful and disturbing is brothers insisting that sisters who cannot conceive children have less worth and should consider being second wives to their husbands. That truly is one of the most backwards, primitive, offensive and disgusting comments that I have heard or read in a long time.

This type of thinking is a direct result of brothers objectifying women to serve a particular purpose, and if they cannot meet that purpose, they are viewed as being worthless. This is a disgusting mindset to have and completely against the teachings of Islam. The great irony is that many of these brothers are either single or divorced, yet they fantasise and joke about having more than one wife, use rhetoric like ‘treat them mean keep them keen’ and salivate at the first sign of a sister on the street.

Nobody has a right to tell anybody else that she should be a second wife because she cannot have children. How do you think that would make her feel? On top of the devastating news that she cannot fulfil a right that Allah Azzawajal has given to women, she has to deal with the news that her husband thinks less of her.

Now there will be some who will bring forth the hadith that the Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said marry fertile women. But that hadith has a context and a number of explanations have been given by scholars to why this was said. One of those explanations is that due to the small number of Muslims during that time in Islamic history there was a need for the Ummah to grow, thus the Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) told the Sahaba (radiallahu anhum) to marry fertile women. Furthermore, this was a recommended act and it was not something that was made obligatory on the Ummah. So for brothers to use that hadith to back up their misogynistic mindset is not only unjust, but it disrespects the Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wasallam), and provides ammunition for Islamophobes in their attacks against his perfect character.

This type of thinking is a direct result of brothers objectifying women to serve a particular purpose, and if they cannot meet that purpose, they are viewed as being worthless.

Giving examples from the Qur’an, Sarah (alayhi’salaam), the wife of Prophet Ibrahim (alayhi’salaam) was infertile, until Allah Azzawajal, through a miracle, willed for her to conceive Prophet Ishaaq (alayhi’salam). Prophet Zakariyyah’s (alayhi’salaam) wife was also infertile, until Allah, through a miracle, willed for her to conceive Prophet Yahya (alayhi’salaam).

Are brothers seriously going to state that these amazing women should have considered being second wives simply because they could not conceive children? Or did they not have any real worth up until the point they conceived? Due to this problem they were not shunned, shamed, divorced, or looked down upon as incomplete women. However, today, we have brothers with such twisted mindsets that they do exactly that which was made forbidden to us.

From a personal point of view, I know brothers who married sisters with fertility issues and ended up having children. Furthermore, there are many people who cannot have children, yet they are extremely happy with each other. Their relationship as husband and wife is built upon how well they get along and how they remind each other of Allah and their deen. In today’s times, with high divorce rates and constant arguments, that love between a husband and wife is invaluable.

To further stress my point, Allah say in the Qur’an:

“Allah’s is the kingdom of the heavens and the earth; He creates what He pleases; He grants to whom He pleases daughters and grants to whom He pleases sons. Or He makes them of both sorts, male and female; and He makes whom He pleases barren; surely He is the Knowing, the Powerful.”

(Qur’an 42:49-50)

Finally, one of the greatest women, Asya, the wife of Phiroan, did not conceive children, so should we look down upon her? Even though Allah has made her an example for all times when He said:

“And Allah sets forth, as an example to those who believe the wife of Pharaoh: Behold she said: “O my Lord! Build for me, in nearness to Thee, a mansion in the Garden, and save me from Pharaoh and his doings, and save me from those that do wrong.”

(Qur’an, 66:11)

So a message to our brothers; stop looking down on women, because they are our mothers, sisters, wives and daughters. Treat them with the respect they deserve. If a hardship arises, it is our duty as fathers, sons, brothers and husbands to help support them in anyway we can. Shunning, shaming or divorcing them is not the right thing to do and goes against the very nature of our deen.

Written by Amar Alam

Note: The author is addressing perverted mindsets that demean women to have less worth and is in no way implying that being second wife is of less worth.

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If Allah makes you stand up you will never fall, and if he lets you fall and leaves you to yourself, you will always fall.

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