Quotes

As I grow, I learn and as I learn, I grow

Saturday, 6 September 2014

THE POLYGAMY UNREST: From Your Sister's Lips





12th Zul-Qa’dah, 1435                                                              Bismillaahir Rahmaanir Raheem

Assalaamu alaykum wa Rahmatullaahi wa Barkaatuhu brothers and sisters. Alhamdu lil Laah for everything, whether we think they are good or bad. Alhamdu lil Laah for one of our greatest gifts; Islam. May Allah azza wa jal grant us the ability to be able to maximize the benefit of every breath we take to please Him solely and become among His most beloveds. May the Peace, Mercy and Blessings of Allah subhaanahu wa ta’aalaa be upon the best of creation, Rasuulul Laah suallal Laahu alayhi wa sallam, his household, his companions and his ummah. Aameen.

Ok, I am guessing that the title of this article is already giving you some kicks. Heheheee…keep smiling. But before anything, I just want us all to know some facts and I am stating these facts because there are some people who will need these stated in order to be able to probably consider thinking about anything that is written in this article.

The Facts (And I mean facts)
1.      I am not marrying any man who is married before.
2.      I don’t even know who I will end up marrying yet.
3.      I might marry a single man or an already married man; it is still unknown to me.

Well, those three facts are saying the same thing, aren’t they? But that is it; I want to bring the basic understanding that I am not writing this article for a selfish interest, no. If I want to marry a single man or an already married man, I don’t need anyone’s endorsement, just one: Allah. Keep smiling. But again, why am I writing this?

The Why?
I have been trying to communicate something to many of my sisters, in our only females’ whatsapp groups especially, for some time now and I win some over but mostly, they don’t want to even hear it at all. So the reason for this article is to try to communicate to my sisters especially again with the hope that perhaps, some will see where I am coming from. I pray so. So now, let us roll…

Note however that all that I am going to write might be theory because I haven’t yet had the experience of marriage so some might just think; she is just talking and I keep telling myself the same thing;

‘Rubaba, perhaps, you are just talking and if you should find yourself in it, you will act differently.’

But for now, this is what I believe and I hope and pray that I am able to walk my talk if ever I marry. The interesting and good thing is that; some people who are in polygamous marriages that I have been able to convince to have this understanding tell me how a lot more relieving it is when you start to see things that way.

Before Your Marriage
Islam is a religion that requires and demands total submission to the Creator; Allah azza wa jal. The moment you take the shahada, I don’t know how to put it for those born Muslim, you have said that whatever Allah subhaanahu wa ta’aalaa and His last Messenger have said is true and good whether you understand it yet or not, whether you are comfortable with it yet or not. Somehow, as I grow, this understanding gets comfortable within me so much so that I have absolutely no questions about why this and why that. Everything is becoming acceptable, understandable and comfortable with me alhamdu lil Laah.

As an unmarried woman who is probably lucky to have some knowledge on Islam and a bonus of understanding of some things, I believe that even before you marry, you must learn to accept one thing: the kind of polygyny that Islam allows. Oooo Yes! You should. And that is simply for your own good. 

So I grew with a passion for reading, I still do. During my Senior High School years, I had read romantic novels of all kinds. The representation of love in them is a ‘wooowww.’ What had saved me from getting entangled with a practical aspect of what I was reading was that; back in Junior High School, I had read a lot of books that talk about good morals and then the Junior Graphic. I used to buy that every Wednesday and the first place I’d go to is the Aunt Betty (I hope I got that right) page. Most of the time, the questions that Aunt Betty answered were about; love, infatuation, lust and romance among teenagers especially. So they gave me a pre-knowledge of the fact that at my age then, such feelings and imaginations were bound to happen yet they were nothing to dwell on because they were temporary and I had believed her totally. I used to not look at guys (I lowered my head) just so I don’t fall…keep smiling. Funny me huh!

Now, I am seeing that most of us, even the Muslim ladies, even the Muslim ladies who seem to know (that wasn’t a repetition), still see the marriage kind of love in that ‘book romance sense’ so much so that at the end of the day, they begin to question the privilege Allah, al-Alim, has given to the man of marrying from one up to four. 

Now, hold on…before you begin to think that I am saying romantic love is not what Islam preaches…let me clarify something. Romance and the feeling of wanting to have a member of the opposite sex or sometimes someone you simply love, to yourself, knowing that the person cares for just you and all that; is something that I would like to say is inherent in humans. I am just casting a glance at how Abu Bakr As-Siddiq and Umar ibn al-Khattab radiyal Laahu anhum strived in their various capacities to be the best of men in the sight of Allah azza wa jal and his beloved Prophet. That was a great struggle for a good cause. I am also looking at how the Ummahaatul Mu’mineen, the Mothers of the Believers strived to be the best in the sight of their husband; rasuulul Laah. Competition for love has always existed. Selfishness in love has always existed but Islam gives you an understanding that helps you to know that sometimes love is not something you should seek to have alone, but get your portion right and that is all that is important.

So I am not going to talk about whether Muslim men should marry one or two or more or they shouldn’t marry at all; the power isn’t in my hands. I am not also going to talk about whether polygamy is good or bad; how dare me do that! Is Allah azza wa jal not the Knower? I am not even going to try to do this thing that we used to do; telling how bitter polygamy has been in our homes or how some men are not doing it as it should be done; no, I am not. Yes, polygamy has issues but this article is concentrating on sisters and how they can save themselves from all the hustle and bustle of the polygamy confusion.

So, before marriage, a Muslim woman should know that whoever she marries could marry again and again and again. That is whether he has the abilities or not, whether he is doing it for a good reason or not. A man is simply like that…you cannot change him. Now, either before or after marriage, you two could share the best of love… I mean the best of love, but when the need to have another wife comes, he will go for it; that will not mean his love for you is going to change; it could still be intact. Perhaps it could be due to something you did wrong or maybe you didn’t do anything wrong at all. It could also be that the woman who he is intending to marry again is a good woman or not? It could be in any kind of situation; good or bad…but at least know that if he wants to marry again, he would.

One thing that I am seeing these days is that women are seeking promises from their husbands to stay married to them ‘only’ and ‘forever.’ They sign contracts and all that. But of course, as Muslims, our word of promise alone is binding upon us to keep not to talk of a signed contract yet an important question comes popping up: What is the worst thing that could happen if the man one day wakes up and says;

‘I am sorry my love but I can’t keep the promise any more. I am going for more.’

Who stands to lose? Ok, the worse is that you decide to leave him. I will let you answer the question of who loses. If you have children, what happens? Imagine you left him then you had another man who gives you that same promise and breaks it…well, imagine that. What about if you got someone who had a wife and wanted to take you in, would you agree or would you simply live your life alone? Well, such is the reality of the case. The thing that pains me most is the negative response and influence that emanates from some Muslim wives when their husbands want to get more women. That is why I really wish I could push all of my Muslim sisters to the acceptance point. Most women simply ‘lose’ it. I hope you understand that. Some develop all sorts of illnesses due to the fact that their husbands want to go in for or have gone in for more wives. Some of them get high or low pressure (and I just searched the internet to verify what I am saying here), etc.

This is from the internet
With a sample size of 352 women, some from polygamous marriages and others from monogamous marriages, some researchers sought to find out the effects of polygamy on families and they have this to say in their results;

‘Findings reveal differences between women in polygamous and monogamous marriages. Women in polygamous marriages showed significantly higher psychological distress, and higher levels of somatization, phobia and other psychological problems. They also had significantly more problems in family functioning, marital relationships and life satisfaction.’

And this is the more reason why I want my Muslim sisters to start working on themselves towards the acceptance point even before they get married and even if they are married now, they can still work at looking at the reality of the matter because Islam is indeed a perfect religion…that is truth and it does not seek to give anyone problems. What I have come to benefit from trying to submit totally is that;

‘There is peace, serenity, calmness of mind and heart in it.’

So much so that things look a lot easier to handle no matter the circumstances. So far as it is Allah’s pleasure you seek and with sincerity and not that of a human being, then one should be able to take things easy as they come; the problems and the goody goodies. We must handle both situations with care. Besides, if we are believers who love Allah azza wa jal, then we must simply be ready for the tears as well as the smiles and hope and pray that at the end of the day, we score above average in our Book of Records.

Ok, so much to say yet I think, it is better to leave you to think through other things about polygamy which I could have written which I didn’t. This is solely for a beautiful love I feel in my heart for my sisters. Let us submit to Allah azza wa jal and wholeheartedly too. Allah subhaanahu wa ta’aalaa takes care of everything.

Remember always that I love you fiisabi lil Laah and I seek to selfishly gain the Shade and Nuur of Allah, al-Wadud, on the Day when we shall all see with clarity what our hands have set forth, with you. 

Jazaakumul Laahu khair always!
Assalaamu alaykum!
www.mmahajia.blogspot.com for my articles
Rubaba Elhaam Mmahajia Rahma Sabtiu-Morla

Tuesday, 26 August 2014

WHAT IF THE ANSWER IS IN TWENTY YEARS TO COME?




30th Shawwal, 1435                                                 Bismillaahi-r Rahmaani-r Raheem

Assalaamu alaykum wa Rahmatullaahi wa Barkaatuhu brothers and sisters in Islam. It is yet another great day. We thank and praise Allah azza wa jal for the countless blessings. Today, I woke up with a start: bad headache and painful eyes but feeling very ok this morning. Remember me in your du’a always. And you know what? The pure and noble Angels will make the same du’a you make for me for you. Are you smiling? That is Islam.

Many months ago, I updated my whatsapp status to;

‘What if the answer is in twenty years to come?’

Interesting enough, a sweetheart of mine sent me a message that it was almost as if I was talking to her with my status. She was drowning in frustration of the failure of so many of her plans among them; marriage. Funny enough, people were saying all sorts of things about her failed marriage. People always talk, don’t they? They say everything, what they knew and what they didn’t know. Yet here was this wonderful Muslimah going through her own internal struggle and pain. So I told her simply;

‘If it didn’t happen, it was because Allah azza wa jal has not decreed it and when it is time for you to marry, no one can stop it and if it isn’t time, no one can let it happen. What if the answers to all the things you were hoping to have accomplished now comes years later and Allah azza wa jal was going to keep you alive to see them?’

So, in the long run, she let herself be. She gave herself some peace…inner peace which I believe every human being deserves to give to him/herself. Now, alhamdulillaah, she is happily married. Such is the power of Allah azza wa jal which we are naturally unable to fathom.

My friend is almost losing it. She wants that particular kind of job but she isn’t getting it and family were not making her situation any easier. But she does not lose faith. She sticks to du’a hoping that Allah azza wa jal might just answer. She almost falls into depression; she probably didn’t notice but I thought so for the signs that were emanating. And the question still applied to her; what if the answer was in twenty years to come? Alhamdulillaah, she has a beautiful job now.

Allah azza wa jal tells us;

‘And when My servants ask you, concerning Me - indeed I am near. I respond to the invocation of the supplicant when he calls upon Me. So let them respond to Me and believe in Me that they may be guided.’

Surah al-Baqarah, the Cow, Chapter 2 ayah 186

Allah subhaanahu wa ta ‘aalaa tells us explicitly that He is near to us and that He responds to our every du’a to Him. All that we can do and should do is believe in Him totally. That believe in Him is what will help us to take situations as they come trying as much as possible not to contribute to our own woes.

It is indeed true that sometimes it is as if Allah azza wa jal does not hear us but truth will always be that He does. We have seen so many examples of du’a that were answered much later. An example is how long it took for Prophet Yaqub to reunite with his beloved son, Prophet Yusuf alayhimas salaam. It took more than twenty years for that to happen. Prophet Yusuf alayhis salaam himself was locked up in prison whilst he was very innocent and it took about fifteen years for him to regain his freedom.

My mom tells me about a woman who had given birth seventeen years into her marriage. I could just imagine the kind of verbal and physical attacks that this woman might have gotten from people. I could just imagine the kind of emotional instability she might have had to deal with. I could just imagine the amount of tears that might have flown in her heart and on her cheeks but the truth if she had known would have been and was that she was only going to give birth, by Allah’s decree, seventeen years to come. Her tears, the insults could not change anything because her du’a was only bound to be answered within Allah’s given time.

These are practical issues from which we must learn. Learning from them helps to give us a peace of heart, mind and soul. Let us imagine the case of Prophet Ayyub and that of Prophet Zakariyya alayhimas salaam as well. Prophet Ayyub’s tests were bound to be taken away by Allah azza wa jal within some time and there was nothing he could do to delay it or make it come earlier. Prophet Zakariyya and his wife were going to only have a child at a particular time that Allah azza wa jal had decided. Let us consider the du’a of the mother of Maryam alayhas salaam. She wanted a baby boy but she had a daughter. From this daughter she had a son; a prophet. She had a double blessing. So, should she have worried herself sick over her du’a of a son not being answered? That is the line I believe we must be thinking even though I know by experience that it is difficult and people around us sometimes don’t make it any easier. The Prophet Muhammad suallal Laahu alayhi wa sallam said;

"Verily your Lord is the One modest and Generous, and when His servant raises his hands to Him in supplication, He is diffident (in some wordings, shy or hesitant) from returning them empty." 

[Ahmad, Abu Dawud and at-Tirmidhi - Hasan]

I do not want to go into why the du’a is not answered right away then. But we must know, provided we believe that, it is as the noble Prophet suallal Laahu alayhi wa sallam has said; our prayers are answered but…in Allah’s own way and in His own time. We cannot hurry it and we cannot delay it. We should not also forget that the extreme case is true that we may never see the results of our du’a in this life.

My mum tells me again about a woman who has never given birth. She is a very wonderful and cheerful woman. She has learnt to accept her situation, the pressures notwithstanding. At her age now, well…Allah is more than able to do all things. If this woman only knew that she was destined not to give birth in this life, she would have given herself a lot of peace in her du’a to Allah azza wa jal to give her a child or children. So, for a believer who knows that his or her du’a could be answered right away, or in many years to come or never in this life, should we not have an upper hand in dealing with what we think should be and what is? 

Khawlah bint tha’alaba radiyallaahu anhaa was one of the companions of the Prophet Muhammad suallal Laahu alayhi wa sallam. One day her husband said something about her being like his mother’s back and later he wanted to have intimacy with her. She would not allow him to do so until Allah had decided between them. After her complaint to the Prophet, he pleaded with her to make peace with her husband since he was her cousin. But she awaited an answer to her du’a and right there and then, Allah azza wa jal had responded. Read the beginning aayaat of Surah al-Mujaadalah, the Pleading Woman, Chapter 58. Her du’a was answered right away. And there are many examples like that.

I have seen cases where a person had prayed to be in a particular situation and Allah azza wa jal had given that person the right opposite. Just like in the case of the mother of Maryam alayhas salaam. Imagine a woman who prays to have an Allah inclined child ending up with a child who makes Allah azza wa jal his or her last interest. Imagine a person who prays for a good husband ending up with a bad one. That is where the tests lie and we must identify those tests and figure out ways to overcome and deal with them.

I have seen young ladies and gentlemen who are yearning so much to get married yet where are the men and the women who will even be interested in marrying them. The right men don’t simply come to them and the men don’t simply get the right women. Yet there are those women and men who are not yearning to get married whose lists of proposals from the right kind of gentlemen and ladies keep getting longer. That is not because they are more beautiful or handsome, or wealthier or anything. So then, would you kill yourself because you wanted one thing and got another? All that is required is that there is sincerity in your heart. You do your best and leave the rest to Allah; that is all.

So I have said enough. I hope that this is able to convey the message that I wanted to in the right manner. I hope someone thinks deeply about this and takes off the burden of the thought of his or her du’a not being answered because the reality is that Allah answers our du’a in His own way and time and as believers, we must respect that fact. Remember that I love you fiisabilillaah and I pray and hope that on the Day of Accounts, the Day of Mutual Gain and Loss, we shall be blessed with the Shade of Allah azza wa jal that He promises to the believers who love one another for His sake solely. Aameen.

Jazaakumullaahu khair always!
Assalaamu alaykum!
www.mmahajia.blogspot.com for my articles
Rubaba