And do not marry the idolatresses until they believe,

    Almighty Allah says:
    Holy Qur'anAnd marry those among you who are single and those who are fit among your male slaves and your female slaves; if they are needy, Allah will make them free from want out of His grace; and Allah is Ample-giving, Knowing. (Holy Qur’an 24:32)
    And do not marry the idolatresses until they believe, and certainly a believing maid is better than an idolatress woman, even though she should please you; and do not give (believing women) in marriage to idolaters until they believe, and certainly a believing servant is better than an idolater, even though he should please you; these invite to the fire, and Allah invites to the garden and to forgiveness by His will, and makes clear His communications to men, that they may be mindful. (Holy Qur’an 2:221)
    O you men! surely We have created you of a male and a female, and made you tribes and families that you may know each other; surely the most honorable of you with Allah is the one among you most careful (of his duty); surely Allah is Knowing, Aware. (Holy Qur’an 49:13)
    The Messenger of Allah (S.A.W.) said:
    MuhummedIf someone of good character and conduct proposes to your daughters, marry them. If you do not, there will be mischief and great corruption on Earth. (Kulayni and Tirmidhi)
    Whoever marries a woman for her glory, Allah will not increase his, but will bring him humiliation; whoever marries her for her wealth, Allah will not increase his, but place him in poverty; whoever marries her for ancestral claims, Allah will not increase his, but in meanness; whoever marries a woman for nothing but to cast down his eyes, guard his private parts, and to establish a relationship, Allah will bless him through her and vice versa. (Al-Targhib wa al-Tarhib)
    Women were married for four reasons: for their wealth, their status, their beauty and their religion, and that the good Muslims were the ones who married women because of their faith. (Muslim)
    Whoever gets married, has safeguarded half of his religion. – The Prophet of Islam (saw)
    There is no better structure founded in Islam other than marriage. – The Prophet of Islam (saw)
    Whoever chooses to follow my tradition must get married and produce offspring through marriage (and increase the population of Muslims) so that on the day of resurrection I shall confront other Ummah (nations) with the (great) numbers of my Ummah. – The Prophet of Islam (saw)
    The most detestable of the lawful things in Allah eyes is divorce. – The Prophet of Islam (saw)
    The greatest blessing in the world is a pious wife. – The Prophet of Islam (saw)
    Verily, the most perfect amongst believers in faith is he who is the best in manner and the kindest to his wife. – The Prophet of Islam (saw)
    Any woman who dies when her husband is pleased with her will enter Paradise. – The Prophet of Islam (saw)
    Allah will become angered with a married woman if she fills her eyes with the look of strangers. – The Prophet of Islam (saw)
    A woman may only fast with her husband’s permission. – The Prophet of Islam (saw)
    The words of a husband to his wife, “I truly love you,” should never leave her heart. – The Prophet of Islam (saw)
    If a man helps his spouse in household work, Allah records for him spiritual reward equal to the hair on his body as if he had fasted during days and offered prayers during nights for one full year. – The Prophet of Islam (saw)
    A man said to the Messenger of Allah (saw): I have a wife who welcomes me at the door when I enter the house, and sees me off when I leave. When she sees me grieved, asks me: ‘What are you grieved for? If you are anxious about your livelihood, it is guaranteed by other than you: or if you are worried about the hereafter, may Allah increase your worries.’ The Messenger of Allah said: “Allah has agents and she is one of them. She will get half a martyr’s reward.”
    The Messenger of Allah was asked, “What rights do our wives have over us?” He replied: “You shall feed her as you feed yourself, clothe her as you clothe yourself; you shall not slap her on the face, nor revile [her], nor leave her [alone] except within the house.”
    If a woman does not perform her duty as a spouse, she has not done her duty to Allah. – The Prophet of Islam (saw)
    A bad woman does not forgive her husband’s mistake and does not accept his apology. – The Prophet of Islam (saw)
    Engage in marriage; because this is the tradition of the Prophet (saw) of Allah. – Imam Ali (as)
    Women are like flowers. They should be treated gently, kindly, and with affection. – Imam Ali (as)
    Act moderately with women in every instance. Speak to them nicely in order that their deeds become good. – Imam Ali (as)
    Whoever is our friend, expresses kindness to his spouse more often. – Imam Ja’far al-Sadiq (as)
    May Allah bless a man who creates a good relationship with his wife, because Allah has appointed man to be the guardian of his wife. – Imam Ja’far al-Sadiq (as)
    When you love someone, let the person know. – Imam Ja’far al-Sadiq (as)
    Whoever marries must respect his wife. – Imam Ja’far al-Sadiq (as)
    The best women among your women are those who show appreciation when their husbands bring home something and are not discontented if nothing is brought home. – Imam Ja’far al-Sadiq (as)
    Who is lucky man? “Imam Rida (as) stated: The greatest gain for a man is a faithful woman who, when she sees him, becomes happy and protects his property and her own honor in his absence.
    Some women are blessings for their husbands who express their love and affection. – Imam Ridha (as)
    Get the one who is religious and prosper. (Bukhari)

rasool.jpg“How beautiful it were if you could marry and establish a family, ending this forlorn and isolated life? You could fulfil your natural urges and also she could help you in your temporal and spiritual needs and goals.”

“O Messenger of Allah, I have neither wealth nor beauty; nor I have a noble descent or lineage. Who will marry me? And which woman likes to be wife of a poor, short, black and ugly man like me?”

“O Jowaibir! God has changed the individual’s worth through Islam. Many people were high-placed in the pre-Islamic society and Islam brought them down. Many were despised non-entities and Islam bestowed them with honor and high rank and brought them up. Islam abolished the un-Islamic discrimination and pride of lineage. Now all people irrespective of their color and origin are equal. Nobody has superiority over others but through piety and obedience to Allah. Among the Muslims, only that person would be higher than YOU whose virtues and deeds are better than you. Now do as I tell you.”

These words were exchanged one day between the Prophet and Jowaibir when the Prophet came to see the people of “Suffa”.

Jowaibir was a native of “Yamamah” where he came to know about the Prophet and the advent of Islam. He was poor, black and short, but at the same time intelligent truth seeking and a man of determination. He came to Medina to look at Islam from near; in a short time he embraced Islam. Since he had neither money, house nor any friends, he temporarily was accommodated along with other poor Muslims in the Mosque by permission of the Prophet. When it was revealed unto the Prophet that the Mosque was not a place of habitation, it became necessary to shift them elsewhere. The Prophet selected a site outside the Mosque and erected a shed for them. The place was named as “Suffa” and the residents were known as “Ashab-e-Suffa” – all of them poor from places far away from Medina.

The Prophet came to visit them one day. Noticing Jowaibir among them he decided to bring him out of this forlorn life. It was beyond the fancy of Jowaibir to own a house and have a wife in his condition. And that was why he replied to the Prophet as to how it was possible for anyone to accept him in matrimony when the Prophet advised him to marry. But the Prophet removing his doubts explained to him the changes brought about in the social outlook of the people by Islam.

After bringing Jowaibir out of his inferiority complex, he directed him to the house of Ziad ibne Lubaid to request him for his daughter’s hand in marriage.

Ziad was one of the wealthiest persons of Medina and commanded high respect among his tribes. When Jowaibir entered his house, he was surrounded by his relatives and some of his tribes-men. Jowaibir took a seat, paused for a moment and then raising his head said, “I have brought a message from the Prophet. Do you like to hear it confidentially or openly?”

Ziad: “A message from the Prophet is an honour to me, better you tell it openly.”

“The Prophet has sent me to request you for your daughter for myself”.

“Did he himself make this suggestion to you?”

“I don’t speak on my own accord. Everybody knows me, I am not a liar”

“Strange! We don’t give our daughters to persons of unequal status nor outside our tribe. You go back I shall go to the Prophet and have a talk with him myself.”

Jowaibir left the house murmuring, “By God, whatever the Qur’an teaches and whatever is the purpose of the prophethood of Muhammad is totally against what Ziad says.”

Those nearby heard the murmurings of Jowaibir. Zalfa, the lovely daughter of Ziad, and the beauty queen of Medina, heard these words of Jowaibir. She came to her father and asked:

“Father, what was that man who just went out saying? And what did he mean?”

“He had come to ask for your hand in marriage and was claiming that the Prophet had sent him for this purpose”.

“Isn’t it possible that he had really sent him, and thus your rejection may amount to disobedience of the Prophet’s order?”

“What do you feel about it?”

“I feel you should bring him back before he reaches to the Prophet, and then go yourself to find out the truth.”

He brought Jowaibir back to his house with due respect, and then himself hurried up to the Prophet. When he saw him he said:

“O Messenger of God, Jowaibir came to my house and brought such and such a message from you, I would like to inform you that our custom is to give our daughters to persons of equal status and belonging to our tribe, who are all your helpers and companions.”

“O Ziad, Jowaibir is a Faithful man. That dignity and honor which you are talking about has now been abrogated. Every Believer man is equal (for marriage purpose) to every believer woman.”

Ziad returned to his house and explained the matter to his daughter. She said, “Please do not reject the proposal put by the Prophet. This matter concerns me. I accept Jowaibir whatever his condition may be. If the Prophet is pleased with it, I am also pleased.”

The wedding was duly soleminized, Ziad paid “Mahr” (Marriage) from his own wealth and offered good articles to the pair. They asked the bridegroom, “Have you got a house where to take the bride?” He said, “No, I had never thought that I would get a wife and settle in domestic life. It was the Prophet who came suddenly and had a talk with me and sent me to Ziad’s house”.

Ziad arranged for him a house equipped with complete household effects, and transferred the bride superbly adorned with ornaments and perfumes.

Night came. Jowaibir did not know where was the house meant for him. He was guided to the house and led to the bridal-chamber. When he saw the house and its equipments and looked at the dazzling bride, his past came to his mind and he said to himself, “How poor I was when I entered this city. I had nothing – neither money nor beauty, neither any lineage nor family – now God made these affluences available to me through Islam. Indeed it is Islam that has brought such changes in the social outlook of the people beyond any imagination. How grateful I am to God for bestowing upon me all these Blessings!”

In spiritual ecstasy he went to a corner of the room; spent the night in recitation of the Qur’an and prayer. It was dawn when he came to himself and then decided to fast in gratitude to God.

When women came to see Zalfa in the morning they found her untouched. They kept the matter secret from Ziad. Two nights and days passed in the same manner. He was fasting during days and praying during nights. The women of the family of the bride were worried. They thought perhaps Jowaibir was impotent and had no need for a woman. At last, they put the matter before Ziad. He informed the Prophet; the Prophet; called Jowaibir and asked,

“Don’t you have any desire for woman?”

“Incidentally, I have very intense desire of that kind”.

“Then why didn’t you go near your bride?”

“O Prophet of God, when I entered the house I found myself amidst that affluence. A state of gratitude and devotion took me over. I thought it necessary to offer thanks and prayers to Allah before doing anything. Tonight I shall go near my wife.”

Jowaibir and Zalfa lived a most happy life. When the call for a Jihad (Holy war) came, he participated in it with the enthusiasm typical of a brave Muslim, and achieved martyrdom under the banner of Islam.

After his martyrdom, Zalfa was the most saught after woman for a wife and people were eager to pay the greatest Mahr for her.


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