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Endnotes: chapter twenty eight

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  1. Ibn Maja, Nikah 1.
  2. Muhammad Rashid Ridha, Fatawa al-Imam, 5:1902ff.
  3. Sura al-Ahzab 33:27.
  4. Fatawa al-Imam 5:1904.
  5. al-Tabari (commentary), 21:156.
  6. Tabaqat, 8:132.
  7. Fatawa al-Imam, 5:1905. This is what Muhammad Rashid Ridha believes as well, even though he finds that the objection of Sheik al-Ghurab weak, "If the Prophet wanted by polygamy to enjoy his rightfully wedded [women], as kings and princes do, he would have chosen the fairest virgins, not the middle-aged matrons. He said once to a man who married a matron, 'Why not a virgin that you should play with her' (al-Bukhari, Jihad 113). I also remind the reader that polygamy in that age was necessary since many [Muslim] men would fall in battle and their women would need someone to take care of them, as most of the men were idolaters" (al-Manar, 4:306; Muhammad Rashid Ridha, Fatawa al-Imam, 5:1914; al-Sabuni, 2:317).
    "It never happened that he chose a wife because of beauty or fairness, and he did not take a virgin except for the daughter of his best and favourite friend, who was also his successor: Abu Bakr.
  8. "This man who is slandered by the godless liars who claim that he was dissipated in his sensual lusts, married his first wife when she was nearly fifty years old while he was in the prime of his youth- hardly twenty five of age! She chose him for his fame as truthful and faithful among his people, and he lived with her till the day she passed away, not thinking to marry another one, until a Muslim lady pitied his loneliness and took his permission to ask `A'isha in marriage for him. And all what this girl, who was dear to him, heard was words of praise for his deceased wife and she was pleased by his loyalty to her.
    "The Prophet did not marry anyone just because she was described as beautiful or vivacious; his incentive was rather to save them the humiliation and to maintain the blood relation that was between him and them. Most of them were widows who lost their protectors and next of kin, and none of their peers offered to marry them" (al-Aqqad, al-Islam wa abatil khusumihi (Beirut, 1974), p.183. Hasan Kamil al-Maltawi, Rasul Allah fi al-Qur'an al-karim (Cairo, 1979)).
  9. al-Sabuni, 2:316.
  10. "They are indeed grudging liars! Muhammad was not a sensual man, but a human Prophet. He married as men marry in order to be an example for them of behaving equally. He was not a god or a son of god, as the Christians believe their prophet was, but a human being like them, who was favoured by God with the revelation and prophethood [lit., who is the recipient of revelation...]. "Say: 'I am only a human being like yourselves; it has been revealed to me that your deity is God Alone" (al-Sabuni 2:315).
  11. Fatawa al-Imam, 5:1905.
  12. Annals of al-Tabari, 3:162; Tabaqat, 8:58ff; Ansab al-ashraf, 1:410; Usd al-ghaba, 5:501ff. All the authority references agree that Muhammad himself proposed to Abu Bakr through a woman intermediary for his daughter, `A'isha. Sheik al-Ghurab does not give any reference showing where he found that narration. Only the book of `A'isha `Abd al-Rahman, The Wives of the Prophet, remains in this field, as the writer quotes in full sincerity from the oldest sources what happened in Muhammad's life, as does Hayatu Muhammad by Muhammad Husein Haikal.
  13. al-Sabuni, 2:331; likewise the exposition of Muhammad Rashid Ridha, in al-Manar 4:304.
  14. al-Manar, 4:303ff; al-Sabuni, 2:332; Fatawa al-Imam, 5:1910.
  15. al-Manar, 4:303ff; Fatawa al-Imam, 5:1909; al-Sabuni, 2:231; al-Maltawi, p.339.
  16. al-Manar, 4:304. We accept the Muslims' claim that Muhammad married this lady to keep her from [the harm of] her folk after the death of her husband in the raid of Uhud. But, it is unrealistic to generalise Muhammad's purpose in marrying twelve women, either to honour them as doers of good, or to protect the ones among them who were in danger. It is doubtful that Zainab Bint Khuzaima was sixty years old when Muhammad married her, al-Sabuni claimed, since there is nothing to back up this claim. Al-Sabuni quotes the following statement from Muhammad Mahmud al-Sawwaf, "She had already reached sixty years when the Prophet married her and she lived with him only two years, after which she passed away. What do the liars have to say about this inculpable marriage, which was performed for a noble reason? Do they find in it any of the things that slanderers keep on bandying about? Do they find in it any trace of passion or lust? Or do they rather find in it nobility, chastity, greatness, mercy, beneficence, and charity on the side of the greatest Messenger of humanity, who came as mercy to all beings? Let the prejudiced orientalists fear God and be honest to logic, not betraying it for the sake of malicious ends. They indeed took upon themselves to study the Islamic sciences chiefly to plot and conspire against, and to malign the lord of humanity, Muhammad " (al-Sabuni 2:233).
  17. al-Manar, 5:305. Muhammad Rashid Ridha claims that she would go out every day to al-Abtah to weep till someone from her clan interceded for her. She found in Muhammad a caretaker for herself and her children (Muhammad Rashid Ridha, Fatawa al-Imam, 5:1911).
  18. "In order to be a blessing to her folk" (al-Manar, 4:304; Muhammad Rashid Ridha, Fatawa al-Imam, 5:1912). Al-Sabuni lists Muhammad's marriage with her among the women he married for political reasons: "The Prophet married some women to unite the hearts around him and bring the tribes closer to him. When a man marries a woman from a certain tribe or clan, a relationship is created by that marriage. Naturally they rush to his aid and protection. His marriage with Juwairiyya Bint al-Harith, the master of Banu al-Mustaliq, was an example of this. She had been taken captive together with her clan, and wanted to redeem herself. So she came to the Messenger of God asking for his help and offering him some money. The honourable Messenger offered to pay the ransom for her and marry her. She accepted the offer and they married. The Muslims said, "The kinsmen of the Messenger of God are our captives?" Then they freed all the captives, thereupon all the tribe of al-Mustaliq adopted Islam when they saw that nobility, sublimity, gentlemanliness, and chivalry. His marriage with Juwairiyya was a blessing to her and to her folk and clan since it was the reason they became Muslims, and thus freed" (al-Sabuni, 2:324-325).
  19. The same applies to his marriage with Safiyya Bint Huyay Ibn Akhtab who was taken captive by a certain Muslim after the death of her husband in the raid of Khaibar. The people of good judgement among the Companions told the Messenger of God, "O Messenger of God, she is the matron of Banu Quraiza and al-Nadhir [and] is not fit for anyone but you." So the Messenger of God called for her and gave her the chance to choose either of two alternatives:
    A- To release her and marry her.
    B- To release her and let her join her family.
    She chose to be released and to be married to him, because she saw how gallant and noble he was (ibid. 2:335).
  20. Muhammad Rashid Ridha, Fatawa al-Imam, 5:1913. It is not easy to believe that Muhammad's motive for marrying her was his fear that she would be humiliated. We know that she fell to the lot of Dihya al-Kalbi when the spoils were divided. But he married her when the Companions of Muhammad said that she was the matron of her people and that no one should have her but Muhammad (Tabaqat, 8:120-129; Ansab al-ashraf, 1:422ff; Usd al-ghaba, 5:490ff).
  21. Muhammad Rashid Ridha, Fatawa al-Imam, 5:1913; al-Manar, 4:305. Al-Sabuni says, "When Abu Sufyan heard about it, he acknowledged the marriage and said, 'He is a stallion that none can subdue by piercing his nose.' The Messenger was proud of this and did not deny he was a match for him. Hence we see clearly the distinguished rationale for marrying the daughter of Abu Sufyan. This marriage was for the sake of alleviating the harm done to him and his followers, especially that now there was a relation of marriage between them" (al-Sabuni 2:326-327).
  22. Muhammad Rashid Ridha, Fatawa al-Imam, 5:1914; al-Manar, 4:305.
  23. al-Sabuni, 2:337.
  24. al-Sabuni, 2:318.
  25. ibid. 2:318-324.
  26. Rudi Paret, Zur Frauenfrage, p.55ff.

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