Saturday, April 5, 2008

Divorce, What’s Islam’s take?

Divorce is the official end of a marriage. That’s the simplest definition really! No, I haven’t checked a dictionary, I just wrote it off the top of my head.

I don’t know about other religions, I am not even properly educated enough to talk about or represent my own religion. Therefore I have done some online browsing for the proper rules of divorce as per Islam.

It says
here that proper justifications for a divorce could be sterility of either the husband or the wife, either one of them is terminally ill which is negatively affecting his spouse’s life to an unbearable extreme, or the husband could simply be abusive and impossible to live with.

Nonetheless, the drawbacks of divorce cannot be ignored since it has a negative impact on the husband financially, it may cause the wife to suffer both emotionally and financially and could leave her an easy victim to sin, and finally its effect on the children is dramatic! Therefore, it should be limited to cases where the marriage reaches a dead-end.

It was basically a good an informative read despite how confusing it sort of got when it came to how accepted/frowned upon divorce is in Islam; however, I guess it is basically because each and every case has its own context.

My browsing then took me there
where the fatwa says that a woman is completely entitled to getting a divorce from an abusive husband.

I couldn’t help but stop there
because I was too curious to know what the sheikh would say to a woman who has no affection whatsoever towards her husband, actually resents him is more of the word, yet chooses to stay in the marriage for the sake of the kids. I am ashamed to say that I was rather disappointed to read that the fatwa implied that she should be more patient and try to find ways to love her husband and continue living with him, when it was mentioned right here that:

The wife of Thabit ibn Qais ibn Shammas came to the Prophet and said, "O Allah's Messenger! I do not blame Thabit for any defects in his character or his religion, but I am afraid that I (being a Muslim) may become unthankful for Allah's blessings." On that, Allah's Messenger said (to her), "Will you return his garden to him?" She said, "Yes." So she returned his garden to him and the Prophet told him to divorce her. (Al-Bukhari 7:63, no. 199)

It’s fair to say that all these iformation has left me too confused to sleep properly until I had awaken up the next day to stumble into a rerun of a talk show about the same topic from both the religious and the legal points of view!!

But that’s for my next post...


Anonymous said...

I'm not surprised the sheikh advised for the woman to find ways to love her husband. This is wisdom. He's not saying, yur not allowed to leave. She is. and he knows that. and im guessing he mentioned that in the answer. altho i can't read arabic.

However, if its sustainable at some level, you CANNOT deny that it is better for the well being of the children and family to stay together. Because of the general harm that befalls afterwards. Even the west(where it was all about 'yeh go get a divorce') is beginning to realize that now. If you do some research on the net, y'ull see what I mean.

You have to weigh the harms and benefits for each situation separately.

a divorcette said...

always red :)

first of all welcome!

second of all, u said it yourself, when the benefit outweigh the harms, perhaps a marriage is worth being patient... but t doesn't take just the wife to be patient now does it?!

no religion has ever put it out there that maintaining a marriage is the woman's job all alone! as a matter of fact, from where i see it, men have even more responsibilities; aren't the "qawamoon 3ala al nesa2"?

my problem with what the sheikh said is that he didn't say the husband had any role to make it work... he burdened the woman in a way (i know for sure he meant well, and he advised of what he thought was right, and this should count for something) but patience is hard enough without the burden of feeling that it is only your responsibility...

thanks for sharing your opinion, please keep coming back