Saturday, 2 December 2017

Characteristics of righteous women - I

Ziyaad ibn Abeeh the Umayyad statesman, asked those who were sitting with him, “Who leads the most blissful life?”They replied, “The Commander of the Believers does!” He said, “No. The man who leads the most blissful life is a Muslim man who is married to a Muslim woman and they have enough sustenance, and each of them is happy and satisfied with their partner! This man does not know us and we do not know him!”
Who is this woman who was admired by the most eloquent and most shrewd man among the Arabs? She is the woman who is chaste and virtuous. A woman whose face is shining with purity, whose heart shines with the glory of obedience to Allah The Almighty and whose outer appearance reflects dignity and arouses reverence. This is the woman who is faithful in dedicating her heart, emotions and thoughts to her husband. Some of the characteristics of such woman are:
·        She offers sound opinions and advice: Saffaanah bint Haatim At-Taa’i, may Allah be pleased with her, went to her brother after she met the Messenger of Allah  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) and started to tell her brother about Islam. Her brother asked her, “What do you think of this man?” She replied, “I think we should follow him!” [Al-Isaabah 8/108]
·        She sacrifices family and homeland for the sake of supporting the religion: Umm Kulthoom bint ‘Uqbah, may Allah be pleased with her, emigrated from Makkah (Mecca) to Madeenah for the sake of her religion while she was still a girl who had never been married. She left her father who was an evil man, comparable to a devil in human form. After that, her brothers pursued her, so she said to the Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention )“Would you let them take me back [in order to] turn me back from my religion, low as my endurance is and as weak as you know women are?’’ [Al-Bukhari 4/3945]
·        Hastens to do good deeds: In the following story, the female companion gave an excellent practical example of this. The Prophet, sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention )had a guest and asked his wives if they had any food, but they all said that they only had water. Hence, the Prophet, sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) asked his Companions: “Who can host this man?” One of the Ansaar (Helpers) said that he could do that and took the guest home.
The man asked his wife to be generous with the guest of the Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ), but she told him that they had nothing except a little food for their children. The husband asked her to prepare the meal, light the lamp and let the children sleep if they asked for dinner. The wife prepared the meal, lit her lamp and made her children sleep. Then, she stood up pretending to mend her lamp, but she put it off. Then both she and her husband pretended to be eating before their guest, while in reality, they really went to bed hungry.
In the morning, the Ansari man went to the Messenger of Allah,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) who said: “Tonight, Allah laughed or wondered at your action.” Allah The Almighty revealed the verse (which means): {But give [them] preference over themselves, even though they are in privation. And whoever is protected from the stinginess of his soul - it is those who will be the successful.} [Quran 59:9] [Al-Bukhari 3798]
·        Her chastity is beyond what minds can conceive:  Mu‘aawiyah ibn Abu Sufyaan, may Allah be pleased with him, went to his wife, Maysoon bint Bahdal, accompanied by a castrated servant. On seeing the slave, [the unveiled] wife became very anxious and asked her husband disapprovingly,“Who is he?!” Her husband comforted her by saying, “Do not worry; he is just a castrated slave.” The righteous wife replied, “Still, he is a non-Mahram (marriageable man) to me; even castration does not allow for him what Allah The Exalted has made prohibited.” She refused that the castrated slave would enter the house [while she was not wearing Hijab(Islamic covering)]. [Al-Bidaayah wa An-Nihaayah by Ibn Katheer 148/8]
·        Honors the rites ordained by Allah The Almighty: In the year sixty-five after Hijrah, Jameelah, the daughter of the governor of Mosul, performedHajj and had four hundred camels and many Hawdajs to the extent that one could not know on which one she was staying. She emancipated five hundred slaves and gave fifty thousand dresses to charity. (Siyar A‘laam An-Nubalaa’ by Ath-Thahabi)
·        Does what is right without fearing criticism: ‘Eesa ibn ‘Allaam ‘Uthmaan may  Allah  have  mercy  upon  him said, “I was at Faatimah bint ‘Ali’s house, may Allah be pleased with them both, and a man came praising her father. She took ash and threw it at his face.” [Tabaqaat ibn Sa‘ad 8/466]
·        Devout worshipper: Al-Haytham ibn Jammaaz  may  Allah  have  mercy  upon  him said, “I was married to a woman who does not sleep at night [as she would be praying all the night]. I could not stay up late with her, but she would sprinkle water and nudge me with her foot while saying, ‘Are you not shy of Allah? For how long would this snoring go on?’ (He said), By Allah! I would be ashamed of myself considering what she did.” (Ta‘theem Qadr As-Salah 2/ 835)
·        Abstinent regarding worldly temptations. Al-Waaqidi  may  Allah  have  mercy  upon  him narrated that once it was the eve of `Eed and he had nothing, so he went to one of his friends who was a merchant and borrowed one thousand dinars sealed in a bag. When he returned home, one of his friends from Bani Haashim from the family of the Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) came to him and told him that he was in need. Al-Waaqidi  may  Allah  have  mercy  upon  him went to his wife and told her about this. She asked, “What will you do?” He replied, “I will give him half the money in the bag!”She said, “This is nothing! One of the family of the Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allah exalt his mention ) comes to you and you give him half the bag!” Therefore, Al-Waqidi gave him all the money. The merchant was a friend of this man and asked him to lend him money. The Haashimi man gave him the same bag, so he recognized it. When the ruler knew about their story, he rewarded every one of their men one thousand dinars and gave the woman four thousand dinars, and said,“She is the most generous one among you!” (Siyar A‘laam An-Nubalaa’ by Ath-Thahabi 9/467)

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