Friday, June 10, 2022

Was Hazrat Aisha Married to the Prophet in Her Childhood?

By Dr. Mohammad Ghitreef, New Age Islam 10 June 2022 Hazrat Aisha Also Counted Among The First Believers, As Cited By Ibn Ishaq. This Means That She Was Born Before The Prophet Got Prophethood. It Is To Be Noted Here That After The Prophethood Mohammad (PBUH) Stayed At Makka For 13 Years, Then How Can Aisha Be Only Six Years Old When Her Marriage Was Solemnized One Year Before Hijra? ------ Nupur Sharma ---- Nupur Sharma, the ex-BJP spokesperson, abusively said about the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) that he fell in love with a six-year-old girl and married and had sex with her at the age of nine. Nupur Sharma was reacting to a Muslim participant in the TV show referring to the alleged Shivling in the Gyanvapi mosque’s Wazookhana (water reservoir used by Muslims for ritual ablution) as a fountain, which is what the Masjid authorities have been claiming. She says this enraged her and hurt her feelings. And so, she said what she said in the heat of the moment. The controversy arose when the courts ordered a survey of the mosque to ascertain its character, though it has been a functioning mosque for several centuries. Sharma’s BJP colleague Naveen Kumar Jindal repeated her statement in a tweet after a few days and went a step further, saying something so obnoxious that it cannot be printed. Muslims protested and demanded stern action against them, but no attention was paid. When the same demand came from the Gulf countries, the ruling BJP took formal action and suspended Sharma from her status as national spokesperson pending investigation into the matter and expelling Jindal from the party. However, one important aspect of this debate is that the same thing which Ms. Sharma muttered is present in our Hadees literature too. What Jindal added after several days of cool reflection, of course, cannot be discussed in any civilised society. But what is the difference between what Sharma said and what is presented in our Hadees literature? The style of narration only? Hadees literature tells the story in a rather neutral way, and non-Muslims say the same bluntly and pejoratively. So, if a non-Muslim says the same thing as in Hadees in an abusive way, why does it deserve to be castigated? Why are we not ready to re-examine and reassess our own Hadees literature and our blind following of even Khabare Wahid (a story narrated by just one person) in Sahih Bukhari? Hadees-e-Mutawatir (mass-transmitted, stories narrated by significant number of people at various times) are generally considered more authentic. To this day, books and articles are being written to support the Khabar e Wahid Hadees narrated in this regard by Bukhari. Moreover, to give somehow a justification, a Maulana named Zaki Ghazi Madani has just written a very long article to prove this report correct. This is circulating on social media. So has Maulana Khalid Saifullah Rahmani in Inquilab Urdu daily ((10 June). Many Muslim scholars such as Yasir Qazi, Shaikh Sulaiman Omer, Engineer Mohammad Ali Mirza, and other reputed Mufties and Maulvies are adamantly and stubbornly arguing for the authenticity of the said Hadees because it is mentioned in Sahih Bukhari. The question is whether Muslims’ belief in these stories and effort to persuade the people for its correctness, citing a particular Arab culture, can be sustainable? I think a brief discussion on this Hadees must be in order here. It is generally believed that Hazrat Aisha (RA) was married to the Prophet in her childhood, as is reported in Sahih Bukhari. She reportedly said: I was married to Prophet when I was only six. He had sexual relations with me when I was nine. 4 (تزوجني رسول الله وأنابنت ست ودخل علي وأنابنت تسع ). One of the great contemporary scholar of Hadees Allama Shabbeer Ahmad Azhar Meeruthi accepted the wordings of the narration. However, he criticized and rejected its interpretation, saying that'' it is a common style to shorten a sentence in all languages when there is a connection to link the addressee's mind to it instantly, and if he catches the purport quickly. It was familiar with Arabs also, and more specifically, they do so when it comes to numerical statements. So, when Aisha told the prophet married me when I was six, she meant six after ten, that is 16, and that when the Prophet did consummate with her, she was nine after ten, that is 19. So, the exact wording of the Hadees should be considered as follows: تزوجني رسول الله وأنابنت ست ( أي بعد العاشرة) ودخل علي وأنابنت تسع (أي بعد العاشرة) When I was married to the Prophet I was six (after ten;16), and when he had intercourse with me I was nine (after ten:19) To prove his point, he cites an example from the Hadees itself. So he quoted the narration reported by Bukhari himself on the blessed night ( ليلة القدر ) as the Prophet said: فالتمسوها في التاسعة والسابعة والخامسة(أي بعد العشرين) بخاري كتاب الصيام ص 271 (Seek this night on 25, 27, 29 of the month of Ramazan). As it is crystal clear that he shortened the sentence to say, في التاسعة والسابعة والخامسة, e.g., in the ninth night after twenty and in the seventh night after twenty and so on. ''Thus the argument is that Muhaddisun and their blind followers of all shades do not give the Hadees the critical thought required, and they did not ponder upon the stylish Arabic phrasing and took it in verbatim. Moreover, this made the issue of Aisha’s age on marriage time an emotional one''. This is also supported on another count, for some may say that because Arabia is a scorching hot country, a woman can reach puberty at nine or so. Nevertheless, the fact of the matter is that Aisha’s case is a singular one of this kind. If her marriage could be justified on the tropical ground, then there should be some other similar cases too, which are not there because if there were any, history would tell us. Meeruthi also refuted this narration on a historical basis,'' for Aisha’s elder sister Asma, daughter of Abu Bakar, was older to her by ten years, as Tabari reports it: هي أكبر من أختها عائشة بعشر سنين وتوفيت أسماء سنة ثلاث وسبعين وقد جاوزت مئة سنة (ابن كثير، البداية والنهاية 8ص 346 and see also Bukhari ka Mutalaa, vo 2 p.254) The translation says: She (Asma) was older than Aisha by ten and died in 73 AH, at an age exceeding 100. It means that she indeed was 27 years on the eve of Hijra, and Aisha respectively, should have been 17 years then. According To Tabari, all the children of Abu Baqar were born before the advent of Islam, in a time which is called in Islamic parlance as Jahiliya period. ( فكل هولاء الأربعة من أولاده (عبد الله، أسماء، عبد الرحمن وعائشة ) من زوجتيه اللتين سميناهما في الجاهلية (ابن جرير طبري ج4ص50) See also Bukhari ka Mutalaa. P.254. The messenger of Allah had migrated to Madina when the 14th year of his mission was started. Since he had married Aisha before his emigration, it is very likely that she was 16 years old then, and after coming to Madina and settling therein, when she was brought to her husband’s house, she was 19 years old''. Furthermore, other indicators are telling the truth. The medical hoax propagated by Zakir Naik and his ilk of the topical countries like Arabia that girls could reach puberty at the age of nine, ten, eleven, etc. And if the case was so, then there was no problem medically with having sexual relations at that age. Irrational and self-styled mufti and scholar Naik should respond that in this case, there should be abundant examples of child marriages in that time; why only Hazrat Aisha was singled out in hadith literature then, as mentioned above? It is unlikely also on the ground that before the marriage with Aisha, the Prophet (PBUH) already had four grown-up daughters. Even two of them were engaged with two boys from Quraish of Makka. How can then is it possible for a father to marry a young girl, younger than his own daughters, and that in their presence? ----------------------------------------------------------------------------- Also Read: Hazrat Aisha's Contribution In The Spread, Propagation And Legacy Of Islam ----------------------------------------------------------------------------- Hazrat Aisha also counted among the first believers, as cited by Ibn Ishaq. This means that she was born before the Prophet got Prophethood. It is to be noted here that after the Prophethood Mohammad (PBUH) stayed at Makka for 13 years, then how can Aisha be only six years old when her marriage was solemnized one year before Hijra? According to her own statement, also narrated by Bukhari in Kitabut Tafsir she said that she had memorized verses from surah Al Qamar which was revealed five years before the Hijra according to all the commentators of the Quran unanimously, and she was at that time a young girl (واناجارية تلعب). Supposedly she was 6 or 7 years then, and so at the time of her marriage, she indeed would have been 15 or 16. Moreover, on the consummation of the marriage (3years after the nikah), she would have been 18 or 19 years old. Another reason is that a single reporter reported the narration, namely Hisham bin Urwa, so it is a Khabar e Wahid in the Hadith terminology. Furthermore, Khabar Wahid خبرواحد is not accepted particularly by Hanafite jurists in essential matters. Though Hisham bin Urwa was an excellent (ثقة) narrator, he only reported this hadith in his old age when he was suffering from senility. He spent 70 years in Madin, then migrated to Iraq. He narrated this Hadees while refuting some allegations of Iraqis to Hazrat Aisha because Iraqis were her political adversaries. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------- Also Read: Yati Narsinghanand Saraswati And Other Islamophobes' Attack On Islamic Prophet’s Marital Life Will Cease Only When Muslims Change Their Own Belief About Hazrat Aisha’s Very Young Marriage ----------------------------------------------------------------------------- The marriage of the Holy Prophet to such a young girl was an important event. However, the event is not narrated by Abu Bakr, Umar, Usman and Ali, and other prominent companions. Only one companion narrates it, and that is also in Iraq. All the narrators of this narration are Iraqis. Why so? Doesn't this raise any suspicion? In short, this incident cannot be proved by any logic. There is plenty of research-based literature in Urdu and Arabic on this subject now. Scholars and Muftis who are blind followers of Bukhari and are still saying that Hazrat Ayesha was married at the age of 6 years and her marriage was consummated at the age of 9 should rethink their flawed position. They should also take the trouble to use this research literature. Otherwise, they will continue to talk nonsense in front of non-Muslims and be disgraced. -------- Dr. Mohammad Ghitreef is a Research Associate with the Centre for Promotion of Educational and Cultural Advancement of Muslims of India, AMU Aligarh. URL: New Age Islam, Islam Online, Islamic Website, African Muslim News, Arab World News, South Asia News, Indian Muslim News, World Muslim News, Women in Islam, Islamic Feminism, Arab Women, Women In Arab, Islamophobia in America, Muslim Women in West, Islam Women and Feminism

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