Wednesday, August 4, 2010

The reason for hitting your wife

Last week Abdullah Kunde and myself had a few debates. In one of these debates Abdullah said that a man cannot beat his wife for any reason but only for the reason of adultery. He said that the word translated "rebelliousness" (nushuz)was a euphemism for adultery. I am not convinced of this and have invited Abdullah to explain and defend his position here. Abdullah, have I represented your position correctly?

***UPDATE*** Let's keep this discussion between Samuel and Abdullah for now. The rest of us can comment on their claims later.

62 comments:

David Wood said...

I've got some interesting ahadith for Abdullah if that's his position. Let's wait to let him state his view.

Rafa-el_1 said...

if thats his point of view not only Muhammad but also the prophet Job have violated such ruling.

surat 38:44 gives the narration between job and his wive. Job has sworn to smite his wife cause she was late coming to him. (nothing about adultery) yet Allah is pressuring job for fulfilling his oath.

in sahih muslim book 4 nr 2127 it narrates the story between Aisha and Muhammad. Aisha followed the 'prophet' when he thought she was asleep at finding out that she followed him he smite her which caused her pain.(Again nothing about adultery)

Yet the quran clearly states that muhammad must be taken as a example (33:21)

Btw: muhammad violated the ruling from surat 4:34 however you put it. The verse states that the wife should be adbonsihed first ,left alone second and than beaten. Muhammad forgot the 2 earlier stages and went right ahead with the beating.

But who are we too ask questions. Sunan abu Dawud clearly states that a man shall not be asked why he beat his wife. So lets abide with that :)

AKunde said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
AKunde said...

Hi gentlemen,

I hope all is well and have just noticed this, so I thought I'd at least post some preliminary comments.

Firstly, while I'm happy to consider David's hadith, because he has already mentioned it, I really don't want this to become a 10 on 1 discussion, with people bringing issues from everywhere. I'd much prefer the discussion is primarily limited to Sam and I, if possible.

Given that, I think just to summarise for those that have missed the start, Sam probably needs to illustrate a) his translation (or one he accepts) of 4:34, b) his understanding of the word 'nushuz' and c) his understanding of the word 'daraba'

Not too much point in me commenting with anything, until these issues are made clear.

I'm looking forward to the discussion.

Kind regards,

Abdullah

AKunde said...

Just an addition for the question Sam asked: has he represented my view correctly;

In this specific verse (4:34) nushuz is a euphamism for sexual misconduct. I wouldn't say that generally nushuz means sexual misconduct, just as generally 'day' doesn't mean a 'day of the week' (i.e. words can have different meanings, depending on the context).

Hence why, as I stated in the Q&A during the debate, the context is essential.

Kind regards,

The Fat Man said...

Ok this is interesting. So they way to keep a Adulterous wife or one you think is going to commit adultery is to first admonish her, then deprive her of affection, then to beat her.

Anyone else see the problem with this advice in the Quran.

Now I'm no expert on woman, but I do know a few things about relationships.

First long before a spouse commits the act of adultery they have already struggled with the idea in their head, even fantasizing about it for sometime.

Second not always but in most cases the reason they are entertaining this idea is because they are not getting the affection, respect, and attention they desire from their spouse.

Finally if a Muslim man follows this advice they will drive their wife into the arms of another man.

Muslims I give you this Ayah.

The book of Fatman
Surah 1 (How to keep your wife)

1.When ever you admonish your wife, realize that there is a man who wishes to talk softly to her.

2.When ever you deprive your wife of affection, there is a man who wishes to listen to her, and shower her with love and attention

3.Whenever you beat your wife and make her cry. Remember there is a man, who desires to hold your wife tenderly in his arms and kiss her tears away.

So Muslim husbands follow the advice in the Quran and you will drive your wife into the arms of another man. Follow the advice in the Book of Fatman Surah 1 and you will never loose your wife.

The Fat Man said...

Correction
The Title of the Surah should be "HOW NOT TO LOOSE YOUR WIFE"

Sam said...

Fatman, LOOSE your wife? What are you loosing your wife from?

minoria said...

I have just read The Blogging Theology and Yahya Seymour made the remark that David has hatred of and unjustly attacks Muslims,specific Muslims.

No name given but I think he meant when David said ANDALUSI was responsible for the cancelation of debates.

ANDALUSI(nor Paul Williams later on) NEVER denied it.SO WEIRD.Anybody else would have.The Muslim mentality is strange,if SEYMOUR was referring to that,then his argument is utterly unconvincing.

It is the behaviour of children,really.Or teen-agers in high school,certainly NO ATHEIST,or almost none,would act THAT WAY.Some atheists are very closed and self-contradict,but they do not make surrealistic claims.

Nazam said...

Will there be any recordings available of these debates to watch?

Samuel Green said...

Nazam, Abdullah and I debated "God of the OT: Jesus or Allah?" and "Saviour of the World: Jesus or the Qur'an?"

I am in the process of making the footage ready for Youtube. God willing they should be ready in a few weeks. There are some technical issues I need to solve.

Samuel Green said...

Hi Abdullah,

Men are in charge of women, because Allah hath made the one of them to excel the other, and because they spend of their property (for the support of women). So good women are the obedient, guarding in secret that which Allah hath guarded. As for those from whom ye fear rebellion, admonish them and banish them to beds apart, and scourge them. Then if they obey you, seek not a way against them. Lo! Allah is ever High, Exalted, Great. (4:34, Pichthall)

The question is what does "rebellion" (Nushuz) refer to? In 4:128 it means "bad behaviour" of the husband, and it seems to me that that is what it means here too. The context of this verse is for the wife to be obedient to her husband and so the word nushuz in context means being disobedient to her husband.

AKunde said...

Greetings all,

I've received confirmation from Sam that he is happy with his translation's version for daraba and his understanding of nushuz, using 4:128 as his base.

I'll start by illustrating that the definition of nushuz you provided, uses a great base, but then becomes extremely illogical in its conclusion. You've looked to 4:128, which paraphrased with your understanding of 'nushuz' states:

'and if a woman fears disobedience from her husband...'

What it really must be taken to is the b asic root, as you illustrated, 'rebellion' and then looked in its context.

Now you've stated that you consider Tafsir ibn Kathir to give an appropriate definition of the verse (and in this case, illustrate the meaning of 'nushuz') Ibn Kathir states that nushuz with regards to 4:34 refers to sexual misconduct and uses this as an evidence:
(idribuhunna) means, if advice and ignoring her in the bed do not produce the desired results, you are allowed to discipline the wife, without severe beating. Muslim recorded that Jabir said that during the Farewell Hajj, the Prophet said;

(Fear Allah regarding women, for they are your assistants. You have the right on them that they do not allow any person whom you dislike to step on your mat. However, if they do that, you are allowed to discipline them lightly. They have a right on you that you provide them with their provision and clothes, in a reasonable manner.) Ibn `Abbas and several others said that the Ayah refers to a beating that is not violent.

AKunde said...

However, we must consider specifically what idribuhunna means also. Must we conclude that it means 'beat' or the like?

4:94, the same word means "to go out"
14:24, the same word means "to expose"
It is mentioned 13 other times in the Qur'an to similar meanings, as well as "separate", "leave", etc. In modern Arabic, one could say "The workers have gone on daraba", which means they have stopped work.

Now if we are to say that it means hitting, as the majority of scholars have suggested, we must also look at specific rulings they have derived as well as the context in which this verse was revealed.

As I said during the Q&A in the debate (this issue wasn't really one Sam and I debated, it was predominantly brought up in the Q&A), this verse was revealed to a society of men that would beat their wives for anything, such as poor cooking, wearing certain clothes, etc.

So in that context, and understanding the verse as the majority of scholars have understood it - it states:

"And if your wives behave poorly by inviting others into your bed, then first speak to them, then leave marital relations and then hit them in a symbolic manner, without touching the face or causing harm."

Now, I stated on the night that what this verse is actually doing is prohibiting domestic violence. Some may ask, how is that the case?

AKunde said...

Let me start with an example and then explain:

Here in NSW, we are allowed to drive cars that are unregistered, as long as:

1)They are roadworthy
2)They are being driven directly from the owner's home to the nearest location essential for their registration
3)They have no more than 1 occupant

Now, you could look at that rule 2 ways and say - 'well I can drive an unregistered car.'

Or, you could look at it in the proper context and conclude: 'I am not allowed to drive an unregistered car.'

Likewise, the context of the revelation makes the ruling clear. If God is saying
You can hit your wives if:
1)The commit sexual misconduct
2)Talking and leaving marital relations doesnt work
3)The hitting is soft to the point of being symbolic
4)The hitting does not involve the face or harm in any way.
5)You think it is actually going to improve the situation of the marriage

In what logical manner can one conclude that God allows you to hit your wife, with all of these conditions?

None.

AKunde said...

Moreover, we can even take the minority view in terms of 'daraba' and conclude it actually means: talk to them, then leave the marital relations and finally, depart from them (i.e. divorce them).

This understanding would strongly correlate to other verses, such as:

And so, if you divorce women and they are about to reach the end of their waiting-term, then either retain them in a manner of fairness and peace or let them go in a manner of fairness and peace. But do not retain them against their will in order to hurt [them]: for he who does so sins indeed against himself. And do not take [these] messages of God in a joking manner; and remember the blessings with which God has graced you... (TMQ 2:231)

So, in short, for one to conclude that the Qur'an allows wife beating that is physically harmful, merely on the basis of 'disobedience', that is not sexual misconduct, one would have to do some very specific quote mining and ignore:
1) the vocabulary of Arabic
2) the rulings of the scholars of law
3) the complete explanation of the Quranic exegetes
4) the rest of the Qur'an itself.

I look forward to the reply.

Kind regards,

Nazam said...

Thanks Samuel, sounds like interesting topics.

Sam said...

Samuel, please email me.

Will said...

I am an Arab who is fluent in Arabic (was born in Syria and lived there until I was 18). Nushuz does not mean Adultry. It amazes me how far Muslims go to divert the meaning of the Quran. When are you guys going to take it for what it is and end the story. It's not from God, period.

hugh watt said...

Will:

Nice to see you here. Hope you will stick around.

Samuel Green said...

I am now reading through all of Abdullah's comments and preparing an answer. Please be patient while I do this. I also have to take my children to soccer.

Samuel Green said...

Sam, you asked me to email you but I cannot access your profile. Can you please email me at samuelgreen@gotalk.net.au

Samuel Green said...

Abdullah writes:

Now you've (Samuel) stated that you consider Tafsir ibn Kathir to give an appropriate definition of the verse (and in this case, illustrate the meaning of 'nushuz') Ibn Kathir states that nushuz with regards to 4:34 refers to sexual misconduct and uses this as an evidence:
(idribuhunna) means, if advice and ignoring her in the bed do not produce the desired results, you are allowed to discipline the wife, without severe beating. Muslim recorded that Jabir said that during the Farewell Hajj, the Prophet said;

(Fear Allah regarding women, for they are your assistants. You have the right on them that they do not allow any person whom you dislike to step on your mat. However, if they do that, you are allowed to discipline them lightly. They have a right on you that you provide them with their provision and clothes, in a reasonable manner.) Ibn `Abbas and several others said that the Ayah refers to a beating that is not violent.

My reply:

I have read Ibn Kathir and he is saying the opposite of what you are saying. Anyone interested can read Ibn Kathir at
http://www.qtafsir.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=674&Itemid=59#2
I have also read the Reliance of the Traveller and the Maududi. All of them structure their comments in the same way. First they give examples of what disobedience is, then why woman should obey, but also how husbands should be kind to their wives.

Ibn Kathir explains disobedience/wrong behaviour as:

(As to those women on whose part you see ill conduct,) meaning, the woman from whom you see ill conduct with her husband, such as when she acts as if she is above her husband, disobeys him, ignores him, dislikes him, and so forth. When these signs appear in a woman, her husband should advise her and remind her of Allah's torment if she disobeys him. Indeed, Allah ordered the wife to obey her husband and prohibited her from disobeying him, because of the enormity of his rights and all that he does for her. The Messenger of Allah said,
(If I were to command anyone to prostrate before anyone, I would have commanded the wife to prostrate before her husband, because of the enormity of his right upon her.) Al-Bukhari recorded that Abu Hurayrah said that the Messenger of Allah said,
(If the man asks his wife to come to his bed and she declines, the angels will keep cursing her until the morning.) Muslim recorded it with the wording,

There is no mention of adultery. The quote that Abdullah gives to prove that the disobedience is adultery is:

... You have the right on them that they do not allow any person whom you dislike to step on your mat. However, if they do that, you are allowed to discipline them lightly. They have a right on you that you provide them with their provision and clothes, in a reasonable manner.) Ibn `Abbas and several others said that the Ayah refers to a beating that is not violent.

But "whom you dislike to step on your mat" is not a description of adultery. It refers to allowing people into your home. It cannot refer to adultery because if it did it would say "if she lets anyone step on your mat". The quote actually allows men the husband likes to step on the mat.

This sura has already dealt with the subject of adultery in 4:15. 4:34 is not dealing with it again and in a completely different method. It is talking about disobedience and this is what the first part of the verse is saying. The root of nushuz means to rise up and when applied to moral conduct just means bad behaviour. This is how it is translated in 4:34 and 4:128.

Adultery could be one form of bad behaviour that this verse speaks to, but it is not the exclusive context of the verse.

Samuel Green said...

Abdullah write:

However, we must consider specifically what idribuhunna means also. Must we conclude that it means 'beat' or the like?

4:94, the same word means "to go out"
14:24, the same word means "to expose"
It is mentioned 13 other times in the Qur'an to similar meanings, as well as "separate", "leave", etc. In modern Arabic, one could say "The workers have gone on daraba", which means they have stopped work.

My reply:

My problem with your examples are that they are all in the Perfect Active while 4:34 is the imperative. Here are all the imperatives 2:60, 2:73, 4:34, 7:160, 8:12, 18:32, 18:45, 20:77, 26:63, 36:13, 38:44.

They all mean hit or strike as for an impression of a seal. The word just means hit. And it is a logical reading for the verse. First warn, then deprive, the hit. There is an increasing degree of harshness in the action.

AKunde said...

I'll respond to the grammatical analysis on daraba tomorrow, God willing, but in regards to your interpretation, again, particularly regarding Ibn Kathir:

Firstly, I quoted Ibn Kathir directly from the same website you refered (tafsir.com). I encourage all to see that while 'nushuz' in general can be illustrated by a range of behaviours, nushuz which may result in 'daraba' is clearly meant as adultery. Indeed, the exegesis you gave of the hadith quoted by Ibn Kathir is not used by anyone to my knowledge (all by and large suggest that it refers to sexual misconduct). However, I haven't read anything, so I'd be happy to consider a scholar that states it merely means entering the home, without the implication of sexual misconduct.

Moreover, the issue here is, if we are to consider Ibn Kathir (Maududi to my knowledge doesn't even contain daleels or supporting evidence for the tafsir, as Ibn Kathir does) or the rulings in Reliance of the Traveller, we must accept the specific rulings contained. We both know that Ibn Kathir makes it clear that nushuz that can result in daraba = sexual misconduct and Reliance of the Traveller, while also illustrating the range of nushuz, makes it clear that the nushuz that can result in daraba = sexual misconduct.

What I mean is, we can't use an English translation of a text and then say 'oh but the meaning implied is something different'.

Find a single scholar of law in the category of Abu Hanifa, Ash Shafi'i, Malik ibn Anas, etc that rules that it permissable to beat ones wife on the basis of her ignoring you. It won't be found.

And therefore what can we conclude? 1 of 2 things:

1) The way that some non-Muslims (such as yourself) understand this verse is wrong

or

2) Muslims, since the time of the Prophet, have understood this verse, but intentionally misrepresent it.

AKunde said...

Moreover, I think you missed the whole section on the page online with Ibn Kathir. While it starts as you indicated, it ends as I indicated:

As to those women on whose part you see ill conduct,) meaning, the woman from whom you see ill conduct with her husband, such as when she acts as if she is above her husband, disobeys him, ignores him, dislikes him, and so forth. When these signs appear in a woman, her husband should advise her and remind her of Allah's torment if she disobeys him. Indeed, Allah ordered the wife to obey her husband and prohibited her from disobeying him, because of the enormity of his rights and all that he does for her. The Messenger of Allah said,

(If I were to command anyone to prostrate before anyone, I would have commanded the wife to prostrate before her husband, because of the enormity of his right upon her.) Al-Bukhari recorded that Abu Hurayrah said that the Messenger of Allah said,

«إِذَا دَعَا الرَّجُلُ امْرَأَتَهُ إِلى فِرَاشِهِ فَأَبَتْ عَلَيْهِ، لَعَنَتْهَا الْمَلَائِكَةُ حَتَّى تُصْبِح»

(If the man asks his wife to come to his bed and she declines, the angels will keep cursing her until the morning.) Muslim recorded it with the wording,

«إِذَا بَاتَتِ الْمَرْأَةُ هَاجِرَةً فِرَاشَ زَوْجِهَا، لَعَنَتْهَا الْمَلَائِكَةُ حَتَّى تُصْبِح»

(If the wife goes to sleep while ignoring her husband's bed, the angels will keep cursing her until the morning.) This is why Allah said,

[وَاللَّـتِى تَخَافُونَ نُشُوزَهُنَّ فَعِظُوهُنَّ]

(As to those women on whose part you see ill conduct, admonish them (first)). Allah's statement,



(abandon them in their beds,) `Ali bin Abi Talhah reported that Ibn `Abbas said "The abandonment refers to not having intercourse with her, to lie on her bed with his back to her.'' Several others said similarly. As-Suddi, Ad-Dahhak, `Ikrimah, and Ibn `Abbas, in another narration, added, "Not to speak with her or talk to her.'' The Sunan and Musnad compilers recorded that Mu`awiyah bin Haydah Al-Qushayri said, "O Allah's Messenger! What is the right that the wife of one of us has on him'' The Prophet said,


(To feed her when you eat, cloth her when you buy clothes for yourself, refrain from striking her face or cursing her, and to not abandon her, except in the house.) Allah's statement,



(beat them) means, if advice and ignoring her in the bed do not produce the desired results, you are allowed to discipline the wife, without severe beating. Muslim recorded that Jabir said that during the Farewell Hajj, the Prophet said;


(Fear Allah regarding women, for they are your assistants. You have the right on them that they do not allow any person whom you dislike to step on your mat. However, if they do that, you are allowed to discipline them lightly. They have a right on you that you provide them with their provision and clothes, in a reasonable manner.) Ibn `Abbas and several others said that the Ayah refers to a beating that is not violent. Al-Hasan Al-Basri said that it means, a beating that is not severe.

AKunde said...

(If the man asks his wife to come to his bed and she declines, the angels will keep cursing her until the morning.) Muslim recorded it with the wording,


(If the wife goes to sleep while ignoring her husband's bed, the angels will keep cursing her until the morning.) This is why Allah said,


(As to those women on whose part you see ill conduct, admonish them (first)). Allah's statement,



(abandon them in their beds,) `Ali bin Abi Talhah reported that Ibn `Abbas said "The abandonment refers to not having intercourse with her, to lie on her bed with his back to her.'' Several others said similarly. As-Suddi, Ad-Dahhak, `Ikrimah, and Ibn `Abbas, in another narration, added, "Not to speak with her or talk to her.'' The Sunan and Musnad compilers recorded that Mu`awiyah bin Haydah Al-Qushayri said, "O Allah's Messenger! What is the right that the wife of one of us has on him'' The Prophet said,


(To feed her when you eat, cloth her when you buy clothes for yourself, refrain from striking her face or cursing her, and to not abandon her, except in the house.) Allah's statement,



(beat them) means, if advice and ignoring her in the bed do not produce the desired results, you are allowed to discipline the wife, without severe beating. Muslim recorded that Jabir said that during the Farewell Hajj, the Prophet said;


(Fear Allah regarding women, for they are your assistants. You have the right on them that they do not allow any person whom you dislike to step on your mat. However, if they do that, you are allowed to discipline them lightly. They have a right on you that you provide them with their provision and clothes, in a reasonable manner.) Ibn `Abbas and several others said that the Ayah refers to a beating that is not violent. Al-Hasan Al-Basri said that it means, a beating that is not severe.

As for suggesting that 4:15 covers the issue of adultery and it can't be covered again in a different way in 4:34, firstly, Ibn Kathir (and many others) consider 4:15 to be abrogated (even the online version of the Tafsir shows this). Secondly, the ruling in 4:15 pertains to one with sufficient proof (i.e. 4 or more witnesses). The implication in 4:34 is that there is not 4 witnesses. Thirdly, adultery is mentioned in several over verses in the same chapter, such as 4:19, with regards to the dowry - it's covering a range of issues with adultery in the various verses, so to suggest that its mentioned once and can't be mentioned again is a ridiculous proposal.

Anyway, I guess if people want to impose their understanding of the verse onto Muslims, they must have at least 1 legal scholar of repute who agrees with them. Remember the muhaditheen and the mufasireen are not scholars of law, when looking to people to quote - although I do also doubt one would find a mufasir or muhadith of repute who suggests a husband may beat his wife for ignoring him.

Just to make it abundantly clear why I am making this request - the whole point of this verse is its legal application. It is not a belief centred verse. So if the scholars of law do not conclude what you are trying to suggest, then your conclusion is false.

I mean, if we want to gleam quotes and verses and ignore firstly the lughatan and the sharan, we could play the same games with the Gospel accounts and the rest of the NT and produce some interesting results also.

AKunde said...

As for suggesting that 4:15 covers the issue of adultery and it can't be covered again in a different way in 4:34, firstly, Ibn Kathir (and many others) consider 4:15 to be abrogated (even the online version of the Tafsir shows this). Secondly, the ruling in 4:15 pertains to one with sufficient proof (i.e. 4 or more witnesses). The implication in 4:34 is that there is not 4 witnesses. Thirdly, adultery is mentioned in several over verses in the same chapter, such as 4:19, with regards to the dowry - it's covering a range of issues with adultery in the various verses, so to suggest that its mentioned once and can't be mentioned again is a ridiculous proposal.

Anyway, I guess if people want to impose their understanding of the verse onto Muslims, they must have at least 1 legal scholar of repute who agrees with them. Remember the muhaditheen and the mufasireen are not scholars of law, when looking to people to quote - although I do also doubt one would find a mufasir or muhadith of repute who suggests a husband may beat his wife for ignoring him.

Just to make it abundantly clear why I am making this request - the whole point of this verse is its legal application. It is not a belief centred verse. So if the scholars of law do not conclude what you are trying to suggest, then your conclusion is false.

I mean, if we want to gleam quotes and verses and ignore firstly the lughatan and the sharan, we could play the same games with the Gospel accounts and the rest of the NT and produce some interesting results also.

AKunde said...

Just because I've already started, I might as well finish off a bit.

Context is all important for grammar. First we start with lughatan and then work towards sharan in understanding the rulings that present the Divine Law.

You didn't contend with the issue I raised that to understand 4:34 as a free range opportunity to hit a wife for the reasons you raised contradicts the ruling in 2:231. You also didn't agree that the hitting is to be symbolic and non-harmful, despite even the Tafsir you quote including rulings that explicitly state this. How did these individuals come to the conclusion that any hitting cannot cause harm if its as simple as you suggest?

In terms of grammatical understanding, 2:73, which you quoted as an example of an imperative, means 'apply', 'present', 'give-out'. It doesn't mean 'hit', as you suggested the word generally means. To give the readers the context:

We said: ",Apply this principle to some of those (instances)... (2:73)


So differentiating between the active and imperative from a lughatan perspective is important, but you need to do it properly (i.e., consider all the possible meanings from a pure grammar perspective, not just one) and then with context and supporting evidence in order to finally derive the sharan.

hugh watt said...

AKunde said:

"What I mean is, we can't use an English translation of a text and then say 'oh but the meaning implied is something different.'"

S.5:73. They do blaspheme who say:
God is one of three
In a Trinity: for there is
No god except One God.
If they desist not
From their word (of blasphemy),
Verily a grievous penalty
Will befall the blasphemers
Among them.

The meaning here is not what Christianity ever believed! So, Allah/Muhammad/Muslims didn't know what they were/are talking about.

Will said...

Abdullah said “4:94, the same word means "to go out"
14:24, the same word means "to expose"
It is mentioned 13 other times in the Qur'an to similar meanings, as well as "separate", "leave", etc. In modern Arabic, one could say "The workers have gone on daraba", which means they have stopped work.”
I am an Arab and have lived in the middle east (Syria) for the first 18 years of my life. I see Muslims like you and I seriously get mad. First, why are you lying and for what? What is your gain? To what lengths are you going to try to divert from what the verse is saying to make it look “right” and for you to accept it? Just accept it for what it is and don’t lie to yourself and go on deceiving the world into thinking Islam and the Quran are nice to women. First of all Idrubuhun اضربوهن in this context means one thing and one thing only. It means “Beat them” Idreb اضرب means beat. The second part uhun وهن is used to make the verb plural and in reference to women. So that is a first. Your desperate attempts to divert the meaning of this word is just that, desperate. There is no chance that you can make this verb mean separate or leave especially in this context. I’ve never heard or ever used the verb Idreb اضرب to say “I am leaving”. It cannot be used like that. The Arabic language is a very rich language. There is a word to say Leave Itrek اترك. Any Arabic-speaking person would easily understand this verse as saying “beat them” (to women specifically).

Second, you cannot say in Arabic “the workers have gone on Daraba ضرب”, what you are trying to say here is “the workers have gone on Edrab” which is completely different. Edrab اضراب means Strike. This is a COMPLETELY different word than ضرب . it actually has two extra letters! This is the same mistake (Commonly used in the west to promote Islam as peace) between Islam (submission) اسلام and the word Salam سلام which mean peace, but they are however two completely different words. Stop lying! You guys are making me sick with your lies - no offense here. I am simply stating what I think you guys are doing which is lying and making things up to get away with your "miraculous" Quran.

Will said...

Abdullah, allow me to school you a little on what the word nushuzuhun نشوزوهن means. In Syria (and in the Arabic world in general), we refer to a gay person as Shath (shaz in slang) or شاذ. This word shath comes from the noun Nushuz. Nushuz in Arabic means “Not straight” or not on the “right path”. So what does it mean in the context of this verse? Not sure! The verse is simply saying if you fear them (women) not being on a straight path, then do such and such (including beating them). For any arab reading this verse without even looking at the tafsir, it is just saying “if you fear them not being on a good straight path then…do such and such”. It really is up for interpretation now what it actually means to be on the “right path”. Arab men would say different things here. Some would probably say “not obeying their husbands”, others would say “being not normal” which brings in more problems as the statements themselves are vague. To put it simply, the verse is not clear on how women have to behave to be on a straight path and out of Nushuz (however we could look to other verses to identify that category?). At any rate, when men decide that their women belong to that category (nushuz), they are allowed to beat them and that’s the end of this story.

Will said...

One last thing. Nushuzuhun in this verse does not mean adultery and can NOT mean that. Islam is clear on the punishment for adultery and that is death, therefore Nushuzuhun here means that they are possibly disobedient to the husbands. This begs the question: what about when the men are disobedient? How do women punish them? or did Allah forget that women live in this world too? It's the same sort of question that suicide bomber women should be asking "Do we get 72 male virgins in heaven too?" What do the women get in heaven when they die for the cause of Allah? This is a serious question. the Quran and Allah has completely forgotten about women it seems.

Fernando said...

AKunde... I'm not entering in your debate withe Samuel Green, butt your attempts to say thate the qur'an sais whate it does not say are disgusting... disgusting... and yes, doing so you're an absolutte lier...

Samuel Green said...

A tradition of the Holy Prophet is the best commentary on this. He said, “The best wife is the one who pleases you when you see her; who obeys your orders and who guards your property and her own honour when you are not at home."
In connection with this, it is necessary to give a warning. Obedience to Allah is of far greater importance than obedience to the husband and has precedence over it. Therefore, it is the duty of the wife to refuse to obey her husband, if and when he orders her to do a thing which amounts to Allah’s disobedience. In that case it shall be a sin to obey him. On the contrary, if the husband orders her not to observe a certain voluntary religious devotion, she must obey him, otherwise her devotion will not be accepted.
If the wife is defiant and does not obey her husband or does not guard his rights, three measures have been mentioned, but it does not mean that all the three are to be taken at one and the same time. Though these have been permitted, they are to be administered with a sense of proportion according to the nature and extent of the offence. If a mere light admonition proves effective, there is no need to resort to a severer step. As to a beating, the Holy Prophet allowed it very reluctantly and even then did not like it. But the fact is that there are certain women who do not mend their ways without a beating. In such a case, the Holy Prophet has instructed that she should not be beaten on the face, or cruelly, or with anything which might leave a mark on the body. (S. Abdul A’La Maududi, The Meaning of the Qur’an, vol. 1, p. 333)

Samuel Green said...

DEALING WITH A REBELLIOUS WIFE

m10.12 When a husband notices signs of rebelliousness in his wife (nushuz, dis: p42) (O: whether in words, as when she answers him coldly when she used to do so politely, or he asked her to come to bed and she refuses, contrary to her usual habit; or whether in acts, as when he finds her averse to him when she was previously kind and cheerful), he warns her in words (O: without keeping from her or hitting her, for it may be that she has an excuse. The warning could be to tell her, “Fear Allah concerning the rights you owe to me,” or it could be to explain that rebelliousness nullifies his obligations to support her and give her a turn amongst other wives, or it could be to inform her, “Your obeying me [def: (3) below] is religiously obligatory”). If she commits rebelliousness, he keeps from sleeping (O: and having sex) with her without words, and may hit her, but not in a way that injures her, meaning he may not (A: bruise her,) break bones, wound her, or cause blood to flow. (O: It is unlawful to strike another’s face.) He may hit her whether she is rebellious only once for whether more than once, though a weaker opinion holds that he may not hit her unless there is repeated rebelliousness.
(N: To clarify this paragraph, we mention the following rulings:
(1) Both man and wife are obliged to treat each other kindly and graciously.
(2) It is not lawful for a wife to leave the house expect by the permission of her husband, though she may do so without permission when there is a pressing necessity. Nor may a wife permit anyone to enter her husband’s home unless he agrees, even their unmarriageable kin. Nor may she be alone with a nonfamily-member male, under any circumstances.
(3) It is obligatory for a wife to obey her husband as is customary in allowing him full lawful sexual enjoyment of her person. It is obligatory for the husband to enable her to remain chaste and free of want for sex if he is able. It is not obligatory for the wife to serve her husband (dis: w45.1); if she does so, it is voluntary charity.
(4) If the wife does not fulfill one of the above-mentioned obligations, she is termed “rebellious” (nashiz), and the husband takes the following steps to correct matters:
(a) admonition and advice, by explaining the unlawfulness of rebellion, its harmful effects of married life, and by listening to her viewpoint on the matter;
(b) if admonition is ineffectual, he keeps from her by not sleeping in bed with her, by which both learn the degree to which they need each other;
© if keeping from her in ineffectual, it is permissible for him to hit her if he believes that hitting her will bring her back to the right path, though if he does not think so, it is not permissible. His hitting her may not be in a way that injures her, and is his last recourse to save the family;
(d) if the disagreement does not end after all this, each partner chooses an arbitrator to solve the dispute by settlement, or divorce.)
Ahmad ibn Naqib al-Misri, Reliance of the Traveller - A Classic Manual of Islamic Sacred Law (Translated by Nuh Ha Mim Keller) Maryland, U.S.A.: Amana Publications, 1994, pp. 540-542)

Samuel Green said...

(34. Men are the protectors and maintainers of women, because Allah has made one of them to excel the other, and because they spend (to support them) from their means. Therefore the righteous women are Qanitat, and guard in the husband's absence what Allah orders them to guard. As to those women on whose part you see ill conduct, admonish them, and abandon them in their beds, and beat them, but if they return to obedience, do not seek a means against them. Surely, Allah is Ever Most High, Most Great.) Allah said,

(Men are the protectors and maintainers of women,) meaning, the man is responsible for the woman, and he is her maintainer, caretaker and leader who disciplines her if she deviates.

(because Allah has made one of them to excel the other,) meaning, because men excel over women and are better than them for certain tasks. This is why prophethood was exclusive of men, as well as other important positions of leadership. The Prophet said,

(People who appoint a woman to be their leader, will never achieve success.) Al-Bukhari recorded this Hadith. Such is the case with appointing women as judges or on other positions of leadership.

(and because they spend from their means.) meaning the dowry, expenditures and various expenses that Allah ordained in His Book and the Sunnah of His Messenger for men to spend on women. For these reasons it is suitable that he is appointed her maintainer, just as Allah said,

(But men have a degree (of responsibility) over them).

Allah said,

(Therefore, the righteous) women,

(are Qanitat), obedient to their husbands, as Ibn `Abbas and others stated.

(and guard in the husband's absence) As-Suddi and others said that it means she protects her honor and her husband's property when he is absent, and Allah's statement,

(what Allah orders them to guard.) means, the protected ﴿husband﴾ is the one whom Allah protects. Ibn Jarir recorded that Abu Hurayrah said that the Messenger of Allah said,

(The best women is she who when you look at her, she pleases you, when you command her she obeys you, and when you are absent, she protects her honor and your property.) Then, the Messenger of Allah recited the Ayah,

(Men are the protectors and maintainers of women, ) until its end. Imam Ahmad recorded that `Abdur-Rahman bin 'Awf said that the Messenger of Allah said,

(If the woman prayed her five daily prayers, fasted her month, protected her chastity and obeyed her husband, she will be told, 'Enter Paradise from any of its doors you wish.')

(Ibn Kathir on 4:34)http://www.qtafsir.com

Samuel Green said...

Dealing with the Wife's Ill-Conduct

Allah said,

(As to those women on whose part you see ill conduct,) meaning, the woman from whom you see ill conduct with her husband, such as when she acts as if she is above her husband, disobeys him, ignores him, dislikes him, and so forth. When these signs appear in a woman, her husband should advise her and remind her of Allah's torment if she disobeys him. Indeed, Allah ordered the wife to obey her husband and prohibited her from disobeying him, because of the enormity of his rights and all that he does for her. The Messenger of Allah said,

(If I were to command anyone to prostrate before anyone, I would have commanded the wife to prostrate before her husband, because of the enormity of his right upon her.) Al-Bukhari recorded that Abu Hurayrah said that the Messenger of Allah said,

(If the man asks his wife to come to his bed and she declines, the angels will keep cursing her until the morning.) Muslim recorded it with the wording,

(If the wife goes to sleep while ignoring her husband's bed, the angels will keep cursing her until the morning.) This is why Allah said,

(As to those women on whose part you see ill conduct, admonish them (first)). Allah's statement,

(abandon them in their beds,) `Ali bin Abi Talhah reported that Ibn `Abbas said "The abandonment refers to not having intercourse with her, to lie on her bed with his back to her.'' Several others said similarly. As-Suddi, Ad-Dahhak, `Ikrimah, and Ibn `Abbas, in another narration, added, "Not to speak with her or talk to her.'' The Sunan and Musnad compilers recorded that Mu`awiyah bin Haydah Al-Qushayri said, "O Allah's Messenger! What is the right that the wife of one of us has on him'' The Prophet said,

(To feed her when you eat, cloth her when you buy clothes for yourself, refrain from striking her face or cursing her, and to not abandon her, except in the house.) Allah's statement,

(beat them) means, if advice and ignoring her in the bed do not produce the desired results, you are allowed to discipline the wife, without severe beating. Muslim recorded that Jabir said that during the Farewell Hajj, the Prophet said;

(Fear Allah regarding women, for they are your assistants. You have the right on them that they do not allow any person whom you dislike to step on your mat. However, if they do that, you are allowed to discipline them lightly. They have a right on you that you provide them with their provision and clothes, in a reasonable manner.) Ibn `Abbas and several others said that the Ayah refers to a beating that is not violent. Al-Hasan Al-Basri said that it means, a beating that is not severe.

When the Wife Obeys Her Husband, Means of Annoyance Against Her are Prohibited

Allah said,

(but if they return to obedience, seek not against them means (of annoyance),) meaning, when the wife obeys her husband in all that Allah has allowed, then no means of annoyance from the husband are allowed against his wife. Therefore, in this case, the husband does not have the right to beat her or shun her bed. Allah's statement,

(Surely, Allah is Ever Most High, Most Great.) reminds men that if they transgress against their wives without justification, then Allah, the Ever Most High, Most Great, is their Protector, and He will exert revenge on those who transgress against their wives and deal with them unjustly. (Ibn Kathir on 4:34)http://www.qtafsir.com

Samuel Green said...

Ok, I have now given us all the references I have considered. They all say they same thing.

AKunde said...

Hi Samuel,

They do all say similar things - precisely what I am saying.

However, its important to emphasise, again, that I requested a single ruling, from a reuptable scholar, that states it is permissable to beat your wife (in the way others are implying) for any reason.

All you have quoted (and 2 are mufasireen, only 1 is a book of fiqh) say 'hitting must not be harmful', i.e., it is a symbolic hitting, not a 'beating'.

Now as I have said, the only relevance to this verse is its legal application - Again, we find no ruling that states you may wholesale hit your wife - it just doesn't exist.

For example, reliance of the traveller as you have quoted, states:
if keeping from her in ineffectual, it is permissible for him to hit her if he believes that hitting her will bring her back to the right path, though if he does not think so, it is not permissible. His hitting her may not be in a way that injures her, and is his last recourse to save the family;

Likewise, Reliance of the Traveller states that women must a) not allow men into the home that husband does not allow. This gives a clear implication (re: sexual misconduct) to any student of fiqh.

Ultimately, I guess we can agree to agree, on this point.

I assume you, at least, agree on the following points:

1) Hitting is for major disobedience
2) It cannot be harmful hitting and
2a) Can't involve the face
3) must follow first speaking about the problem and then leaving marital relations
4)It can only be done if the husband expects it will improve the situation


Ok - so just like the unregistered car scenario, what person knowing that would conclude that Islam and the Qur'an allows 'wife beating'.

Can I just add, without any malice, that I'm astounded that a few Christians have ignored the request to keep the discussion between Samuel and I and that the moderators have, for whatever reason, still allowed the comments to be posted. It doesn't reflect very well.

Moreover, the mere title is inflammatory. It couldn't be called 'Is it permissable to hit your wife', it had to be titled 'the reason for hitting your wife'.

My advice, be hospitable, as Jesus was to tax collectors and sinners, if you really want to DWJD.

Kind regards,

Abdullah

Zack_Tiang said...

Abdullah,

I respect your request for 'undisturbed' discussion between you and Green.

But I had to just throw in this comment.

"My advice, be hospitable, as Jesus was to tax collectors and sinners, if you really want to DWJD.

Actually, Jesus would go straight to the problem and not beat around the bush. So the writer of this blog is DWJD.

No need to respond to me. Just adding in my thought.

hugh watt said...

AKunde said:

"What I mean is, we can't use an English translation of a text and then say 'oh but the meaning implied is something different.'"

Muslims do this frequently!

S.4:157. That they said (in boast),
"We killed Christ Jesus
The son of Mary,
The Apostle of God";—
But they killed him not,
Nor crucified him,
But so it was made
To appear to them,
And those who differ
Therein are full of doubts,
With no (certain) knowledge,
But only conjecture to follow,
For of a surety
They killed him not."

"Can I just add, without any malice, that I'm astounded that a few Christians have ignored the request to keep the discussion between Samuel and I and that the moderators have, for whatever reason, still allowed the comments to be posted. It doesn't reflect very well."

So, no one else should be allowed to comment? How about when the inconsistencies are so obvious?

"What I mean is, we can't use an English translation of a text and then say 'oh but the meaning implied is something different.'"

Samuel Green said...

Abdullah writes:

"Likewise, Reliance of the Traveller states that women must a) not allow men into the home that husband does not allow. This gives a clear implication (re: sexual misconduct) to any student of fiqh."

This seems to be your key reference to adultery, but I do not agree with you. In all of the quotes I gave it just means who you let into your home. It is not a reference to adultery.

The three references I have provide define rebellion as any form of disobedience and say that a three stage response is called for. 1. warn 2. deprive 3. beat. This process is for any disobedience not just adultery.

Regards
Samuel

AKunde said...

Hi Samuel,

I'll just restate this part for your consideration, because if your agree with these points, then I think we have reached an agreement. I've accepted that, unless one understands the intricacies of law, you perhaps wouldn't conclude that rebellion in this context is pertaining to adultery. But anyway these points:

I assume you, at least, agree on the following points:

1) Hitting is for major disobedience
2) It cannot be harmful hitting and
2a) Can't involve the face
3) must follow first speaking about the problem and then leaving marital relations
4)It can only be done if the husband expects it will improve the situation


Ok - so just like the unregistered car scenario, what person knowing that would conclude that Islam and the Qur'an allows 'wife beating'.


Moreover, I guess we can agree that a) nushuz must have different meanings, unless you want to apply the very same meaning of 'rebellion' to 4:128 and b) that laws pertaining to adultery are mentioned in more places than 4:15.

But even if you can't agree on the last two points, given the 3 references you quote at least cover the first 4, if we can agree on those, I'll be happy.(I guess if we can't, I'd also be happy, because you'd need to demonstrate where a reputable scholar of law has interpreted the verse and applied it precisely as you indicate - you haven't really engaged with the impracticality resulting in a prohibition, and I've tried to make this simple using driving an unregistered car as an example).

Kind regards,

Abdullah

hugh watt said...

1) Hitting is for major disobedience
2) It cannot be harmful hitting and
2a) Can't involve the face
3) must follow first speaking about the problem and then leaving marital relations
4)It can only be done if the husband expects it will improve the situation"


Muslim Book 9, No 3506.

Then came 'Umar and he sought permission and it was granted to him, and he found Allah's Apostle (may peace be upon him) sitting sad and silent with his wives around him. He (Hadrat 'Umar) said: I would say something which would make the Holy Prophet (may peace be upon him) laugh, so he said: Messenger of Allah, I wish you had seen (the treatment meted out to) the daughter of Khadija when you asked me some money, and I got up and slapped her on her neck. Allah's Messenger (mav peace be upon him) laughed and said: They are around me as you see, asking for extra money. Abu Bakr (Allah be pleased with him) then got up went to 'A'isha (Allah be pleased with her) and slapped her on the neck, and 'Umar stood up before Hafsa and slapped her saying: You ask Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) which he does not possess. They said: By Allah, we do not ask Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) for anything he does not possess. Then he withdrew from them for a month or for twenty-nine days. Then this verse was revealed to him:" Prophet: Say to thy wives... for a mighty reward" (33. 28).

Eh!

Samuel Green said...

Hello Abdullah,

You wrote:

"I'll just restate this part for your consideration, because if your agree with these points, then I think we have reached an agreement. I've accepted that, unless one understands the intricacies of law, you perhaps wouldn't conclude that rebellion in this context is pertaining to adultery."

This has got nothing to do with the intricacies of law. There is no reference to adultery being the only reason for this course of action. All the references refer to general disobedience which may include adultery. You have said that:

"Likewise, Reliance of the Traveller states that women must a) not allow men into the home that husband does not allow. This gives a clear implication (re: sexual misconduct) to any student of fiqh."

This is just one point of disobedience. You are treating it as the only point and ignoring all the rest. All of the quotes list a range of areas which can be called disobedience and for all of them the process is warn, deny, beat. You have to show that all the other offenses are not treated the same way as letting the wrong males into the house.

Abdullah writes:
"But anyway these points:
I assume you, at least, agree on the following points:
1) Hitting is for major disobedience
2) It cannot be harmful hitting and
2a) Can't involve the face
3) must follow first speaking about the problem and then leaving marital relations
4)It can only be done if the husband expects it will improve the situation"

I do not agree with 1 because the references are clear that it can be for any act of disobedience.

m10.12 When a husband notices signs of rebelliousness in his wife (nushuz, dis: p42) (O: whether in words, as when she answers him coldly when she used to do so politely, or he asked her to come to bed and she refuses, contrary to her usual habit; or whether in acts, as when he finds her averse to him when she was previously kind and cheerful), he warns her in words ... (then the rest)(Reliance)

It is the same with Ibn Kathir and Maududi.


but do agree with 2, 3, 4

Samuel Green said...

Ok, Abdullah and I have had enough time and it is getting a bit old. If anyone else wants to comment please do.

AKunde said...

Hi Sam,

I apologise for not responding yesterday, for those that don't know we've had a busy 24hours in the world of Muslims.

I will now provide the evidence and rulings used by the scholars I am aware of that came to the ruling I mentioned during the debate. Recall for those following, I stated that 4:34 primarily refers to adultery, in terms of making permissable the 'hitting' allowed and that the primary purpose of the verse was to outlaw hitting ones wife through making the only way it is permissable impossible, impractical and pointless.

Sam has only quoted 1 book of law, so I will stick to the scholars of that school of jurisprudence.

AKunde said...

Imam ash Shafi'i stated that hitting your wife is impermissable based upon:
The Prophet said: "Do not hit the maidservants of Allah!".
However, this was followed with the dispensation:
Then Umar came to the Prophet and said: "The women are rebelling against their husbands!" So the Prophet allowed an exception to beat them. Whereupon women started pouring in to see the family of the Messenger of Allah and complain about their husbands. Seeing this, the Prophet said: "Many women have poured in to see my family, complaining of their husbands, and those whom they mentioned (i.e. those hitting their wives) are the worst of you. The bold section is all 1 hadith and it is narrated in many collections, including Abu Dawood, Ibn Majah, An Nasa'i and others.

So, to summarise, Imam ash Shafi'i concluded that to hit ones wife is impermissable, unless the conditions that allow it (i.e. rebellion) are met and that the hitting is not harmful.

AKunde said...

Both Imam ash Shafi'i and Imam an Nawawi (the major scholars of the Shafi'i school) used the following to conclude that rebellion in this context means adultery:
In his final sermon, the Prophet said: "O my bretheren! My last command to you is that you should treat women kindly. Verily, they are your comforters, and you have no right over them beyond that , unless they commit a major indecency [fahiSHa mubeen]. If they do, then refuse to share their beds and hit them without harm or violence. Then, if they obey you, do not show them hostility any longer. Lo! you have a right over your women and they have a right over you. Your right over your women is that they not allow whom you hate to enter your bed nor your house. While their right over you is that you treat them excellently and provide them with their needs of clothing, housing and sustinence".

Both Imam ash Shafi'i and Imam an Nawawi concluded that 'major indecency' = adultery.

This hadith is narrated in Bukhari, Muslim, Tirmidhi, Abu Dawood, Sunan Ahmad ibn Hanbal and I would assume many others. I am not sure if it is considered to be mutawatir (certain), but it would at least considered to be mashahur (well-known). It is certainly above sahih (preponderant) and not khabar ahad (singularly narrated)

Indeed, Imam an Nawawi stated that: indecency refers to a married woman who is found with a strange man sitting in her house, while they are both alone (Sharh Sahih Muslim). Meaning, adultery is possible, but not confirmed (with 4 witnesses).

AKunde said...

Both the imams also concluded that the hitting is not to be violent (as Sam has agreed with the sources he cited). Some of their evidence for this is:

The Prophet said: "Could any of you beat his wife and then expect her comfort in bed in the evening?" (Bukhari and Muslim).

The Prophet said: “Any of you that hits a servant in the face, know that you have set them free.” (Muslim)

The more astute may be able to realise that some of the above evidences also help prove some of the points Sam has already agreed to.

Now I have provided my evidence for the original statement that I made in Launceston that rebellion as far as Muslims are concerned in 4:34 refers to adultery.

Sam has also agreed, at least, that the hitting cannot be violent, must follow first talking and ceasing marital relations and that the husband must think such hitting will improve the situation in the marriage, all points I stated early on in this discussion and in Launceston.

Ergo, my conclusion, which is merely a restatement of the conclusion of the major scholars of law, is that hitting is impermissable and that the foundation of this verse is to outlaw hitting women.

AKunde said...

Now, people could choose to dispute this ruling – fair enough – and that is the process of Islamic law – but you would need to provide evidence.

Note, I asked Samuel a few times in this discussion for a single legal ruling that agrees with his interpretation. He presented 1 ruling and conceeded points 2,3,4 I previously mentioned.

Single ahadith are not legal rulings – so please lets not carry on the discussion into silliness. Another point you all may be interested in knowing is that to my knowledge there is no full english version of Ibn Kathi's tafsir (again, not a legal book), so be wary of quoting it assuming you're properly representing the text.

From here, I think its essential that Sam acknowledges that I can demonstrate that the intrepretation of 4:34 as I stated is the opinion of at least some Muslim scholars of law. From this point we could only present alternative opinions (not that any have been put forward so far, as Reliance of the Traveller is a Shafi'i text and the 2 major scholars of the school are ash Shafi'i and an Nawawi and I have included their rulings and evidences above. Again, be aware that Reliance is a basic text, it is not an encyclopedia, and it needs the explanations of the scholars so the meaning isn't lost in translation) and as Sam and I are not in positions to discuss which ruling is more or less reliable than another ruling (unless blatantly clear), then I guess our discussion should come to an end with:

Sam has already accepted points 2,3,4

Sam should accept that, at least, some scholars concluded that nushuz in 4:34 means adultery.

Sam should also acknowledge that scholars have concluded, due to the impractical nature of the ruling, that the root of the law is in making hitting women impermissable.

Although, I accept the final point may not be clear, but regardless the discussion on this issue for us laymen is over.

I look forward to starting the discussion on the guilt offerring.

Kind regards,

AKunde said...

By the way Sam, given that many of your co-religionists have already flouted the request to keep the discussion between you and I, I fail to see the reason you would invite them to contribute?

Yet again, this website demonstrates its extremely poor hospitality towards Muslims. I won't try to suggest for a second that every Muslim website would be hospitable to Christians, but if you want us to be here for a discussion, have some basic respect. If you don't want us to be here for a discussion and want to continue rants into sensationalism and ignorance, that is fine also, but don't try to have it both ways and wonder why fewer Muslims are accepting the invitation for discussion on this site.

For those reading this, I'd like to say that in the emails I've had with David and Nabeel and also the encounters I have had with Sam, I find them to be three individuals of high integrity and manners, hence why I am surprised at the discussion being opened without asking me if I was finished and also at all the comments that have been approved, despite my initial request being posted on the blog.

Kind regards,

Samuel Green said...

Abdullah, thanks for the comments. I opened the blog up to others because not much seemed to be happening and I thought we had finished.

AKunde said...

Hi Sam,

Thats fine, as I said in email, maybe in the future we can pre-set the discussion guidelines - I had no idea it would be such a big news week for Acts 17!

Anyway, I certainly have finished my points.

Kind regards,

Samuel Green said...

Hello Adbullah,

You wrote:

"Recall for those following, I stated that 4:34 primarily refers to adultery, in terms of making permissable the 'hitting' allowed and that the primary purpose of the verse was to outlaw hitting ones wife through making the only way it is permissable impossible, impractical and pointless."

You are saying that 4:34 is actually a command "to outlaw hitting ones wife". I still find this difficult to believe though I can see the logic of the legal argument that creates a situation where the requirements for hitting cannot be meet.

My rejection is for these reasons.

1. On a plain reading the verse is dealing how to discipline a badly behaved wife and there is a three stage process, warn, deprive, hit. This is how all the translators translate. There are much easier ways to say do not hit your hit than this type of construction.

Samuel Green said...

2. The Sunnah clearly shows Muhammad and his companions beating their women for reasons other than adultery.

... He (Muhammad) struck me (Aisha) on the chest which caused me pain ... (Muslim: bk. 4, no. 2127)

... (Umar) found the Prophet sitting sad and silent with his wives around him. ... (Umar) decided to say something which would make the Prophet laugh, so he said, "Messenger of God, I wish you had seen the daughter of Kharija when she asked me for extra money and I got up and slapped her on the neck." God's messenger laughed and said, "They are around me as you see asking for extra money." Abu Bakr then got up, went to A'isha and slapped her on the neck, and Umar did the same to Hafsa. (Mishkat Al-Masabih: vol. 2, p. 690; Muslim: bk. 9, no. 3506, Siddiqui)

Narrated Aisha: A necklace of mine was lost at Al-Baida' and we were on our way to Medina. The Prophet made his camel kneel down and dismounted and laid his head on my lap and slept. Abu Bakr came to me and hit me violently on the chest and said, "You have detained the people because of a necklace." ... (Bukhari: vol. 6, bk. 60, no. 132, Khan)

Iyas b. Abdullah reported God's messenger as saying, "Do not beat God's handmaidens;" but when `Umar came to God's messenger and said, "The women have become emboldened towards their husbands," he gave license to beat them. Then many women went round God's messenger's family complaining of their husbands, and he said, "Many women have gone around complaining of their husbands. Those are not the best among you." Abu Dawud, Ibn Majah, and Darimi transmitted it. (Mishkat Al-Masabih: vol. 2, p. 692)

`Umar reported the Prophet as saying, "A man will not be asked about why he beat his wife." Abu Dawud and Ibn Majah transmitted it. (Mishkat Al-Masabih: vol. 2, p. 693)

Yes, a woman has the right to not be hit in the face but this assumes that she can be hit elsewhere.

A woman has the right not to be hit in the face.

Hakim b. Mu`awiya al-Qushairi quoted his father as telling that he asked, "Messenger of God, what right can any wife demand of her husband?" He replied, "That you should give her food to eat, clothe her when you clothe yourself, not strike her on the face, and do not revile her or seperate from her except in the house." Ahmad, Abu Dawud and Ibn Majah transmitted it. (Mishkat Al-Masabih: vol. 2, p. 691)

The quotes I gave from Ibn Kathir, Maududi and Reliance all agree with my reading of the text.

Reliance is Islamic law with the acceptance of al-Azhar

Samuel Green said...

3. I agree that some Law decisions may support what you are saying however, this does not make them right. People can do gymnastics with the law to get the answer they want and this seems to be what you are doing here. We see this type of thing in the gospel:

(Jesus said) You have let go of the commands of God and are holding on to the traditions of men." 9 And he said to them: "You have a fine way of setting aside the commands of God in order to observe your own traditions! 10 For Moses said, `Honor your father and your mother,' and, `Anyone who curses his father or mother must be put to death.' 11 But you say that if a man says to his father or mother: `Whatever help you might otherwise have received from me is Corban' (that is, a gift devoted to God), 12 then you no longer let him do anything for his father or mother. 13 Thus you nullify the word of God by your tradition that you have handed down. And you do many things like that." (Mark 7:8-13)

It seems to me that this is what you are doing. The Qur'an and Hadith are clear but you have made a legal context to justify rejecting their clear instruction. I can understand why Muslims would like to do this but it cannot be done and still be true to the Qur'an and Sunnah.

AKunde said...

Hi Sam,

Of course Reliance of the Traveller is a legal text, as I said. It is an elementary legal text, which does not always include the evidence or explanation of rulings (although, it does in some cases) from within the Shafi'i school of law.

The 'approval' from al Azhar you are talking about is merely for the English traslation, not for the text, the text is universally approved.

However, as I clearly stated - Imams an Nawawi and ash Shafi'i (the major scholar and founder of the school of law) more clearly explain the rulings of the school regarding 4:34 in other texts, such as Sharh Sahih Muslim - and others. As I have conceeded, you can conclude on a limited reading of reliance that any rebellion may result in wife hitting, but you cannot ignore the accompanying rules (i.e. that it must follow talking and leaving the bed, that it must be likely to improve the situation of the marriage, that the hitting cannot be harmful, etc). When you factor these rules in, you cannot logically conclude that hitting is permitted.

AKunde said...

Moreover, as I stated previously, it is no good quoting khabar ahad ahadith and suggesting that these are legal rulings - that are not. They may help to form the basis of developing law, but they are not themselves law. Now we can put 20 khabar ahad ahadith about women being hit for no reason against a single mashur or mutawatir hadith (which I quoted) which makes it clear that women cannot be hit, except for adultery and when you have spoken to them first and left marital relations - and the single mashur or mutawatir would be considered superior in making the law. All Islamic scholars would agree with this (i.e. that khabar ahad that contradict mashur or mutawatir are not considered for law and the latter is used instead).

In fact, I find your position to be the legal gymnastics you are speaking of. You're suggesting that its fine to read abridged versions of tafsirs, which are not legal texts in the first instance, to derive law (first its abridged, second its in a new language, third its not a legal text). Then you suggest its appropriate to consult a basic legal text, without looking into the evidence used by the scholars that developed and codified the usooli (jurisprudential) method used within the school. Finally you quote English translations of khabar ahad (singularly narrated) ahadith, with no commentary, outside of a legal framework, as if they are law themselves and ignore my mushur/mutawatir hadith with the key terms from Arabic kept in the text (albeit in transliteration).

Don't get me wrong, I can thoroughly appreciate how it may seem from the outside, but you have to, at least, understand the basics of Islamic Law, in order to take the discussion beyond this point (as you can't seem to engage with the issues of; legal commentary, report classification, differentiation of legal texts from non-legal texts, etc).

I've used a very simple example from everyday law (the unregistered car) to illustrate that specific conditions which allow, imply a root of disallowing . I've also presented the commentary of the chief scholars of the basic legal text you have quoted, which explains the ruling (hukm) and the evidences for it (daleel). I hope I don't sound condescending if I suggest that you take a look online at some of the basics of usool ul fiqh (jurisprudential methods) and uloom ul hadith (understanding the hadith) if you want to take the argument further.

Either way, you have to conclude that you have derived a ruling, based on texts written by scholars (that themselves had different understandings), using less reliable (preponderant) ahadith over more reliable (certain/well-known) ones which is contrary to what every Muslim scholar has concluded.

Putting this all into perspective - Imam ash Shafi'i had his legal career around 150 years after the death of the Prophet (so well before Europeans had decided if women had a soul or not) and he's concluded (as I quoted) that the asl (foundation/origin/cause) of the law is prohibition of hitting women. He is one of the top 4 scholars of Islamic jurisprudence and he provides evidence (some of which I have quoted) for his conclusion. His rulings are compiled in short form in Reliance of the Traveller, written some 500 years (maybe more) after his death. Are you suggesting he got it all wrong? If so, what would be his motivation?

I sincerely apologise if it appears as legal gymnastics, and also if I seemed condescending when I suggested you look to usool ul fiqh and uloom al hadith principles, but to be honest, we're arguing between apples and oranges while I use legal texts with evidences properly and you quote ahadith indiscriminantly.

Kind regards,

AKunde said...

Moreover, as I stated previously, it is no good quoting khabar ahad ahadith and suggesting that these are legal rulings - that are not. They may help to form the basis of developing law, but they are not themselves law. Now we can put 20 khabar ahad ahadith about women being hit for no reason against a single mashur or mutawatir hadith (which I quoted) which makes it clear that women cannot be hit, except for adultery and when you have spoken to them first and left marital relations - and the single mashur or mutawatir would be considered superior in making the law. All Islamic scholars would agree with this (i.e. that khabar ahad that contradict mashur or mutawatir are not considered for law and the latter is used instead).

In fact, I find your position to be the legal gymnastics you are speaking of. You're suggesting that its fine to read abridged versions of tafsirs, which are not legal texts in the first instance, to derive law (first its abridged, second its in a new language, third its not a legal text). Then you suggest its appropriate to consult a basic legal text, without looking into the evidence used by the scholars that developed and codified the usooli (jurisprudential) method used within the school. Finally you quote English translations of khabar ahad (singularly narrated) ahadith, with no commentary, outside of a legal framework, as if they are law themselves and ignore my mushur/mutawatir hadith with the key terms from Arabic kept in the text (albeit in transliteration).

Don't get me wrong, I can thoroughly appreciate how it may seem from the outside, but you have to, at least, understand the basics of Islamic Law, in order to take the discussion beyond this point (as you can't seem to engage with the issues of; legal commentary, report classification, differentiation of legal texts from non-legal texts, etc).

I've used a very simple example from everyday law (the unregistered car) to illustrate that specific conditions which allow, imply a root of disallowing . I've also presented the commentary of the chief scholars of the basic legal text you have quoted, which explains the ruling (hukm) and the evidences for it (daleel). I hope I don't sound condescending if I suggest that you take a look online at some of the basics of usool ul fiqh (jurisprudential methods) and uloom ul hadith (understanding the hadith) if you want to take the argument further.

Either way, you have to conclude that you have derived a ruling, based on texts written by scholars (that themselves had different understandings), using less reliable (preponderant) ahadith over more reliable (certain/well-known) ones which is contrary to what every Muslim scholar has concluded.

Putting this all into perspective - Imam ash Shafi'i had his legal career around 150 years after the death of the Prophet (so well before Europeans had decided if women had a soul or not) and he's concluded (as I quoted) that the asl (foundation/origin/cause) of the law is prohibition of hitting women. He is one of the top 4 scholars of Islamic jurisprudence and he provides evidence (some of which I have quoted) for his conclusion. His rulings are compiled in short form in Reliance of the Traveller, written some 500 years (maybe more) after his death. Are you suggesting he got it all wrong? If so, what would be his motivation?

I sincerely apologise if it appears as legal gymnastics, and also if I seemed condescending when I suggested you look to usool ul fiqh and uloom al hadith principles, but to be honest, we're arguing between apples and oranges while I use legal texts with evidences properly and you quote ahadith indiscriminantly.

Kind regards,

Samuel Green said...

Abdullah wrote:

"The 'approval' from al Azhar you are talking about is merely for the English traslation, not for the text, the text is universally approved."

No, the approvals is as follows:

"There is no doubt that this translation is a valuable and important work, whether as a textbook for teaching Islamic jurisprudence to English-speakers, or as a legal reference for use by scholars, educated laymen, and students in this language."

"We certify that the above mentioned translation corresponds to the Arabic original and conforms to the practice and faith of orthodox Sunni Islam."

Therefore I have provided an Islamic law ruling to show that my reading of the Qur'an is correct. You cannot just ignore Reliance and unrepresentative.

Abdullah wrote:

"As I have conceeded, you can conclude on a limited reading of reliance that any rebellion may result in wife hitting, but you cannot ignore the accompanying rules (i.e. that it must follow talking and leaving the bed, that it must be likely to improve the situation of the marriage, that the hitting cannot be harmful, etc). When you factor these rules in, you cannot logically conclude that hitting is permitted."

I fully agree that hitting one's wife can only happen as part of a process which involves warning, sexual deprivation and only then hitting. This is what I have been saying and quoting all along. Whether or not it will improve the marriage will depend on the situation but you cannot rule out the whole process because it may or may not work.

Abdullah wrote:

"Now we can put 20 khabar ahad ahadith about women being hit for no reason against a single mashur or mutawatir hadith (which I quoted) which makes it clear that women cannot be hit, except for adultery and when you have spoken to them first and left marital relations - and the single mashur or mutawatir would be considered superior in making the law."

You have made a straw man. I never presented any hadiths that said you could hit your wife for NO reason. The hadiths I provided were the ones that Ibn Kathir and Reliance thought were worthy. They come from good sources. The hadith that you provided does not say that women can be hit only for that reason.

I have quoted from the Qur'an, hadith and Shariah (see previous posts) to confirm my position. I cannot see any other way to read the Qur'an.