Excerpts from my life

Marriage Market

Bismillahir Rahmaanir Raheem

The wedding trends these days are disturbing. I live in a city dominated by Muslim population. However, extravagant weddings are not a rare sight. Often, during the “wedding season”, we find decorated wedding lawns, burstling with crowd and loud music. More to dismay, we find bearded men and abaya cladded women walking in and out of the premises.

 “If someone should come to you whose religion and character you are pleased with, marry (your daughter) off to him. If you do not do so, there will be mischief in the land and widespread corruption” [At-Tirmidhee (1085)]

It is common that we are told by mothers and sisters to update them if we have a suitable match in sight. On a personal level, I do not mind and often I do exchange references of good muslims. In many cases, it is surprising, that people reject profiles merely by seeing the picture. The deen and character is not even enquired or considered. A fat, dark, poor and short person will stand no chance, no matter how good her/ his character is.

 

There is this one mother, who has demanded that she wants only a doctor or an engineer from IIT for her daughter. That is because her daughter deserves no less. She is the topper of her department, she is beautiful and from a good background. So, these are the factors which make her a top class girl (not her deen) and a deserving candidate for a top class boy (not deeni boy)

It is disheartening. Is it just a textual thing today? To look for a spouse based on deen? Religious people are not considered “worthy” at all. I wonder what Prophet (salallahu alayhi wasallam) saw in Ali (radiallahu anhu) to marry off his daughter to him. Perhaps people of this age would prefer an Abu Lahab.

The story of practising people is no different. Practising brothers reject sisters profile because their mothers did not find them pretty enough. or because their mothers want them to marry in same caste (reverts are a banned commodity). When will we learn to take a stand for haqq?

 

Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen (may Allah have mercy on him) said:

If they (parents) say to him: Do not eat this food, do not eat meat, do not eat rice, do not eat a certain thing – and it is something that he wants to eat – then he is not obliged to obey them in that, because it does not serve any interest for them, and it is harmful for him because it causes him to miss out on something that he likes.

End quote from Liqa’ al-Baab al-Maftooh (49/6)

It still amazes me with what ease people leave pious people with the knowledge that they are rare. The criteria of being a good muslim today is one who prays five times a day. Anyone who does just that is considered super practising. His aqeedah, his ‘Ilm, Sunnah, ‘Adab and ‘Akhlaq are irrelevant. We watch Televisions, listen to music, lie with ease, clean shave ourselves, keep our women without hijab and then we pray. Therefore, we are very practising

 

On the other hand I have had religious and pious sisters reject pious brother because the brother earned less than “xyz”lakh per annum. They have a minimum slab which males have to cross. Allow me to clarify that I do not expect rich girls to marry someone bankrupt. But rejecting young educated men who have begun their careers a few years back and In Sha Allah seem worthy to make more money in future, I find it futile. Females are seeking in their grooms status which their fathers achieved at 50 years of age. Even in these cases, if the girls are fine with it, many a times parents are not.

Other than that, of course we see people rejecting each other because he is too fat, he is too short, beard is too long, she is too skinny, her nose is too big, she is too educated, she does not speak fluent English, she is not fit for our family etc.

He does not have a beard, he does not wear pants above ankles, she has not memorised enough surahs, he does not pray Sunnah, his income is haram, she does not proper hijab as Allah says, he does not lower his gaze.. these are never reasons I have heard for rejecting anyone. Rather such prospects are picked first from the market

What is wrong with the ummah? Why are we forgetting the story of Musab bin Umayr. How he withstood the pressure of his family for haqq..  It is never easy to choose Islam over everything else .There will be many occasions that will require us to compromise a bit on deen to please others. First society and then parents. Sadly, when it comes to marriage we consider their wrong preferences over the pleasure of Allah.

 

The result?

 

“…….If you do not do so, there will be mischief in the land and widespread corruption

As warned in the above hadith, Muslims today are frivolously looking at profiles after profiles as if searching for a car for their children. Just how people unaware of Islam and who do not recognise Allah search- based on looks, background and status. After this, if the prospect is religious then Ma Sha Allah, Alhamdulillah. How many religious muslims do we see today marrying the first religious alliance that comes across? Okay, let us give a concession. How many marry from amongst the first five?

Young muslims are unmarried until thirties and forties. Bad marriages have become so common. Women are reduced to maids and nannys whilst men are reduced to money minting machine. People no more exist as servants of Allah post marriage. No time for religion. No time to gain ‘ilm. No time to do any good for the ummah. A monotonous system that has been framed by the society and thus, being abided by.

Zina has become easy. Nikah has become so difficult.

Recently, the mother of an eighteen year old messaged me that she is worried for her son. He is about to join college this fall and she is worried what if he falls into any fitnah. At a time when there is open invitation for zina, it is a genuine concern. We discussed giving books and talking it out etc. When I mentioned this to my husband, his immediate response was, ask her to get him married before joining college.

I was amazed at the simplicity of the solution. Why not open doors to nikah and shut the door to zina for our youngsters forever. I told this to her, she agreed Islam is perfect in all ways. However, I am not sure how many of us would like to implement this for our children,

We have forgotten the main purpose of this Sunnah. We forget that we are choosing a companion whose character greatly affects our life in hereafter. We forget what being “coolness of eyes” means. That is where we make the major mistake for the next few decades of our lives and sometimes there is no turning back.

May Allah give us hearts to obey his commands. May He give us beneficial knowledge and keep us on siratal mustaqeem. May He help us obey Him and love Him the most. May He protect us from the fitnah of this world and make our spouse the coolness of our eyes.

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An Unworthy Compromise

An Unworthy Compromise- Part 3

#An Inspired Tale

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Coffee is therapeutic! A short pause prevailed as we sipped the glory. Makes me wonder how life in this dunya would have been without so many mercies that we enjoy. What if the dunya was only full of tests and struggles? Alhamdulillah, for the blessings in which we seek joy. I waited for Aleena to enjoy her beverage before she continued.

– ” so where were we?”

-” you both exchanged photographs.”, I briefed.

-” hmmm, yeah. So he hinted that he was fine with the photographs and that we could seriously involve our parents into this. The next time I messaged him, he told me he was busy with an international convention and was representing his college. It was already a week, and he said he hasn’t heard from his mother yet. I, on this side, had already spoken to my family and they felt we were pretty much on the same page. Alhamdulillah, they decided to proceed with the matter.”

– ” so your father spoke to him? “, I asked

– ” ahaan, the second time I dropped a message he informed me that he is busy with exams and this kept repeating. I knew either he or his family were viewing my profile often, since his name showed in my profile’s ‘recently viewed’ list. Finally after a couple of weeks, my wali messaged him to proceed with the matter if it interests him as the matter has been stretching a bit too much!”

– “and what did he say?”

-” This was his reply-

    ‘  Wa alaikum assalaamu wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu,

      Jazakallahu khayran for being patient with this. I happened to speak to my parents today and after great deliberation we thought its best to not proceed with this matter.
       I certainly think Aleena would make a great spouse and its really unfortunate that matters couldn’t proceed.

        I pray that Allah grants her the best match at the earliest.

     ~Aadil.‘ ”

With a crooked view, Aleena looked into my face. I say ‘into’, because she was trying to study the thoughts going behind it.

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I was in two minds after reading this message. At one place things seem to be going fine until he refused. The delay and postponement in replying did bring a hint of doubt but in the long run I thought it wasn’t a big deal. People say no for marriages right? For a while I thought all Aleena needs is counselling to accept this decision of his.

I put my hands on her’s and prepared myself to soothe her, “Aleena babe, it is always Allah’s decree. I agree things seemed to be going smoothly but you need to….”

– “Don’t you conclude Zobia.”, Aleena snapped ,” of course I was disappointed. You know in terms of dunya, audhubillah, he wasn’t a good looking person either. Of course, Allah has made all of us beautifully, and it is mankind who has limited beauty to tall, fair and slim. But only for the pleasure of Allah, I decided to carry on with the matter because I felt we could do great work in deen In Shaa Allah. However, this wouldn’t disturb me until a few weeks after his last message he sent me this message-

      ‘ As salamu alai kum Aleena, I hope this message finds you in great health and imaan. I understand that things didn’t work out and I only thought that I must explain my behaviour. My mother has worked very hard to bring me up and her opinion is very important to me in every aspect of my life. The girl I marry, I wish her to take good care of my mother and In Shaa Allah, my mother should like her. However, our thoughts in aspects of deen are very different. Alhamdulillah, we belong to a high profile society and she desires to have a daughter in law who is active with her in her social circles and fits well into it. From within, I don’t approve of this as I know it is a major clash between deen and dunya. However, I am her only son and I am indebted to her for all the love she has given me. May you find a pious spouse for yourself. Ameen. ‘ ”

I could see Aleena’s fist clench the phone as she read it out. I could see the big question on her face that why was he registered in matrimonyofdeen123 at all! Was he trying to find a combination of a woman who is into deen- dawah at day and then attends parties at night? Someone who wears niqab in the day and removes her hijab later? Alhamdulillah, we felt sad for Aadil. We felt sad that he claims to keep deen as priority but perhaps even he is not aware that unknowingly, life of dunya is what regulates his choice of a spouse.

People have made nikah so complicated and zina so easy! Audubillah. It is not rare where children of moderate Muslims are a lot more practising. Their beard, dressing choices, hijab and insistence of a halal lifestyle is not approved by their family. Audhubillah! It embarrasses them. It is surprising how people born into Muslim families find it embarrassing to follow the rules of Allah! Amongst innumerable hurdles that the youth faces in these scenario, choice of spouse is the most crucial one. I say so, because you are the one who has to live with your spouse and it is your deen that will get better or worse with your spouse. Subhanallah, it is disheartening to see parents compromising on the compatibility and happiness of their child for a few words of appreciation from the people of dunya. Why would anyone want their child to compromise akhirah for the dunya!

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It took me a few sessions to counsel the disheartened Aleena. The other side of the coin is that in such scenarios we need to have sabr and accept qadr. Indeed being rejected for materialism can be humiliating but doesn’t Allah say that Good men are for good women. Both of us were in consensus that being married in his house would have made practising deen difficult for her. Perhaps, Aadil feels too obliged to his mother that he did not take a stand to complete half his deen, how ever would he do justice between his wife and mother? Certain matters are best left to Allah. Alhamdulillah, indeed He is the best disposer of affairs! Indeed, Allah has better in store for her In Shaa Allah.

“But perhaps you hate a thing and it is good for you; and perhaps you love a thing and it is bad for you. And Allah Knows, while you know not.”

(Surah Al Baqarah, 2:216)

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The End.

Author’s note:

As salamu alai kum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuh my family in Islam,
I hope you’ll enjoyed reading this and that this post benefits us, In Shaa Allah.
Honestly, I was very nervous about posting this one as the storyline was very ordinary and something which many experience very often. Alhamdulillah, I was glad with the response that it has got and I hope the ending stood up to your expectations.
I would like to thank a few people (all names changed). Firstly, Zobia, who with consent of Aleena shared the story as she thought it is important that the youth dealing with it knows about this issue. Next, I have to admit that I have the three best editors one could ever get. Each one of them thoroughly goes through every story of mine and their feedback is the reason why I get better and post better. (You can see obvious differences in what I wrote a year back to how I write today. Alhamdulillah, it is due to my these sisters). Jazakiallah khair for inspiring me and pushing me when I hit the writer’s block! Indeed all good is from Allah and all bad is from me.

And Jazakallah khair to you my dear reader. Every comment and every read means a lot to me.

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An Unworthy Compromise

An Unworthy Compromise – Part 1

I was looking forward to meet Aleena that day. I was quite taken aback when she called me up yesterday seeking an appointment. She is my friend, she does not need an appointment to speak to me! She sounded low.

Aleena, is one sister I admire a lot. An educated, bright young muslimah. She was everything you would like to see in a practising muslimah. Well read, striving to gather knowledge, humble, soft spoken, sophisticated and kind. There is a passion she holds for the deen which is hard to describe. It is like a fire within her to work actively for the betterment of Islam. It is hard to let someone like that down. I sure was waiting for her.

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Oh, I am Zobia. A behaviour therapist cum counsellor by the will of Allah (subhana wa ta’aala). They say not everything that glitters is gold. How often do we see in life this thing coming true. Indeed there lies perfection in Tawheed, and how imperfect and fragile this dunya is.

Everything is a lesson (if you take so), every passing cloud, every sign of nature, every dark night and every flowing stream. Life is a school in itself if one observes. Yet another lesson was learnt in the very small passing event, which is like something which many people go through on daily basis. However, it’s an eye opener only if one ponders! I experienced it once again like all the times by the Grace of Allah (subhana wa ta’aala).

And whomsoever Allah guides, there is none that can mislead him.” ( Surah Az Zumar , 39:37)

Aleena was on time, Alhamdulillah. It had been months that I had met her. My profession keeps me busy. There is hardly a day that I have enough time to socialise. Alhamdulillah, for small mercies like WhatsApp and Facebook that I am able to keep the little touch that I do with my friends. She seems to have lost some weight. I could trace a hint of frustration on her face. I remember that she had begun to look for suitable grooms for herself to complete half the deen. I assumed it was perhaps with respect to that, though I hoped for the best.

We greeted each other and settled down. After a brief conversation to comfort her, the conversation drifted to the issue. What was disturbing her?

– You are aware that I was looking for a spouse, right?

– ahan, yes. Is it related to the issue?

– hmmm, yes. The last couple of weeks have consumed me completely. All I feel is despair and distress. I do not know why I am so affected.

– what happened? Tell me

– I made an account in matrimonyfordeen123.com and I came across a guy- Aadil. You know Zobia, the matrimonial website is exclusively for Muslims and it claims to be the haven of only those who take the deen seriously. Alhamdulillah, we find many practising brothers and sisters having put up their profiles there seeking alliance. Needless to say, I too was looking for someone practising. When I enlisted the things I wanted in my potential spouse, I was advised by my wali that we shall never find someone having 100% qualities that we want. Therefore, if we find someone 60% of what we are looking for, In Shaa Allah, we must seek to go ahead with the matter. But Zobia, what happened with me was miraculous. This boy, Aadil, was 100% of what I wanted. When I read through his profile, I was so stunned. It was as if he made it keeping me in his mind. It was a perfect match from a third eye…

To be continued…

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#AN INSPIRED TALE #

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