My dear husband, Najib has covered the first two sub-topics of Topic 4: Relationship with Spouses.
So far, he discussed the responsibility of the husband and how to maintain a happy and respectful marriage.
Today, I aim to discuss what qualities a woman should look for in a man when it comes to marriage.
In this day and time, some men tend to think of what they want in a woman, without considering as to whether they are ready to be the man the woman wants and accepts.
Upon transitioning from puberty/adolescent to an adult, a man and woman have an equal responsibility to build and equip themselves based on what they have been taught by their parents, Islam and life experiences to face future challenges.
Prophet (peace be upon him) said:
“Women may be married for four things: their wealth, their lineage, their beauty and their religious commitment. Choose the one who is religiously-committed, may your hands be rubbed with dust (i.e., may you prosper).”
Imam al-Nawawi (may Allah have mercy on him) said about this hadith:
"What that means is that people usually seek these four qualities in a woman, but you should seek the one who is religiously committed."
[Riyadh al-Saliheen, p. 454]
There are several questions you need to ask when considering moving to the next stage of life when you found your soulmate or when people have asked for your hand which you may want to consider; once you get to know them?
Here, there is a task or activity for you to get involved in:
On one side of a piece of plain paper, please jot down your thoughts on the following questions:
What is marriage?
Are you physically, socially, intellectually, emotionally and mentally ready for marriage inshaAllah?
Am I ready to be a mother inshaAllah?
Is marriage to your friendship or partnership or a combination of both?
Do you want to work or do you want to stay at home inshaAllah?
What do you want to gain from a marriage inshaAllah?
Once completed, if your response is no for not ready, consider this another time. However, if you were able to answer all of the questions, please continue with the following task below:
On the other side of the same piece of paper, please add the following title:
What to consider for a righteous husband in a marriage and a future father figure inshaAllah?
Underneath the title, please draw a plain table with one heading: Major qualities and the other column with the following heading Minor qualities.
Major factors are the vital qualities that vary with every woman. Some consider religion, personality and looks fundamental; other people think that wealth, lineage, age, ethnicity, language and race important; to some, these are minor factors.
Al-‘Allamah al-Sa’di (may Allah have mercy on him) said:
"If there are other (good qualities) as well as religious commitment, that is good, otherwise religious commitment is the greatest of qualities to be sought."
[Bahjat Qulub al-Abrar wa Qurat ‘Ayun al-Akhyar fi Sharh Jawami’ al-Akhbar page. 120]
Some women prefer marrying people of similar ethnic background, whereas, other women are open to all. As long as you both get along whether from the same race or not, do what makes you happy.
For Allah (The Most High) says:
“(God) created you from a single pair of male and female and made you into nations and tribes so that you may know one another. Verily, the most honoured of you in the sight of God is the most righteous of you.”
I keep my marriage life private but due to the nature of this topic, I will share key aspects I was looking for when I met my dear husband a few years ago. However, this may vary with other women:
1) His character and religion:
Both work hand in hand. The five pillars, responsibility, a fire extinguisher, loyalty, honesty, kindness, calmness, able to negotiate and communicate about various topics, a supporter, personal doctor and nurse when poorly, a friend, one that allows me to work with a balance with home life, a listener, not one who just hears, a cover teacher who would help me in the house and guide me when I do an error and a future father figure for our offspring inshallah.
Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said:
"The best of you in Islam are those who are most excellent in character as long as you deeply understand religion."
[Ahmad, graded Sahih]
Allah has created each of us in the best form possible and looks will one day wrinkle and its the inside that counts.
The scholars have advised that being religiously committed is vital to apply the laws and teachings within daily life.
“Verily, the most honourable of you with Allah is that (believer) who has At-Taqwaa [i.e. he is one of the Muttaqoon (the pious)]”
[Quran, Surah Al-Hujurat 49:13]
The Prophet (peace be upon him) said:
“If there comes to you one whose religious commitment and attitude pleases you, then marry [your female relative who is under your care] to him, for if you do not do that, there will be tribulation on earth and much corruption.”
2) How he treated his parents for that will mirror on how he would treat my parents.
If you find one who respects your parents then surely you know, you will be respected.
3) Common sense
There is a difference between intellect and common sense, for the former is associated with theory but the latter is practical where he can think and understand.
Therefore, when considering a spouse, seek advice from your parents and ask what you want in a person, for you will be a wife and mother if Allah decrees. As you equip yourself, you would need to ensure that you will be with someone who never lets go of your hand as you walk alongside the path no matter what the weather is like outside.