Exposing Osamas Smokescreens and Rabbit Trails: Revisiting the case for the honorific position of women in Holy Bible
in contrast to their degradation in Islam
Exposing Osamas Smokescreens and Rabbit Trails:
Revisiting the case for the honorific position of women in Holy Bible
This is the second part in a series of rebuttals to Osamas reply to my refutation of his challenge.
Osama takes issue with my use of a non-Muslim translation of 4:34:
All of the Noble Verses I present from the Noble Quran are translated by Minister Abdullah Yusuf Ali; may Allah Almighty rest his soul. The unethical and deceiver Sam Shamoun used a non-Muslim translation to this Noble Verse:
"Men are superior to women on account of the qualities which God hath gifted the one above the other, and on account of the outlay they make from their substance for them. Virtuous women are obedient, careful, during the husband's absence, because God hath of them been careful. But chide those for whose refractoriness ye have cause to fear; remove them into beds apart, AND SCOURGE THEM: but if they are obedient to you then seek not occasion against them: verily, God is High, Great!" S. 4:34 Rodwell
Few notes to notice here between my translation and his:
1-In my translation, men are in charge of their wives because men are generally given more strength than women, and because Allah Almighty Commanded men to financially support the women. In his bogus translation, it says "superior". Even though his translation has some truth in it, but it is not very accurate.
There is nothing unethical and deceptive about quoting any particular translation of the Quran. We have quoted this translation correctly, and we have identified the translator correctly. Furthermore, we did not claim that we were citing a Muslim translation when we were not, which could then be called a deception on our part. As it is, we did nothing unethical or deceptive. Osama is merely trying to emotionalize the discussion by unsubstantiated personal insults. Apparently, Osama wants his readers to believe the baseless Muslim propaganda that a non-Muslim is less qualified to translate the Quran than a Muslim. The first thing we would like to point out is that Rodwell wasn't the only non-Muslim who rendered the Arabic to mean superior:
Men have authority over the women because God has made the one SUPERIOR to the other ... N.J. Dawood
We will now demonstrate that both Rodwell and Dawood were correct in their translation and that it is Osama and Yusuf Ali who are actually dishonest.
Notice what the following MUSLIM commentators say in regard to men being superior to women, beginning with Ibn Kathir who writes:
In this verse Allah says that the man is the leader over the woman and is the one who disciplines her if she does wrong. <Because Allah has made one of them excel the other.>, this is because men are better than women, and man is better than woman. Therefore, prophethood and kingship were confined to men, as the Prophet said: 'A people that choose woman as their leader will not succeed.' This hadith was narrated by Al-Bukhari. Added to that positions such as judiciary, etc. ... <And because they spend from their means.> Here, Allah refers to the dowry and expenses, which Allah has prescribed in the Qur'an and Sunnah; and given a man is better than a woman, it is appropriate that he be her protector and maintainer, as Allah says: <But men have a degree over them.> (2:228). (Tafsir Ibn Kathir-Part 5, Surah An-Nisa', ayat 24-147, Abridged By Sheikh Muhammad Nasib Ar-Rifa'i [Al-Firdous Ltd, London; 2000, first edition], p. 50; bold italic emphasis ours)
Ibn Kathir, writing on 2:228, claims:
<But men have a degree over them.>, that is, men have a degree over women as far as VIRTUE, BEHAVIOR, STATUS, obeying orders, expenditure, fulfilling duties, AND GRACE in both worldly life and the Hereafter ... (Tafsir Ibn Kathir, Part 2, Sheikh Muhammad Nasi Ar-Rifai, p. 204; bold emphasis ours)
The next quotations are taken from Newton & Haqqs superb book mentioned above.
Renowned Muslim commentator Ar-Razi wrote regarding S. 4:11:
"(The males share is that of two females). Man is more perfect than the woman IN CREATION, AND INTELLIGENCE, and in the in the religious sphere, such as the suitability to be a judge, and a leader in worship. Also, the testimony of the man is twice that of the woman. So that whoever is given great responsibilities must be given correspondingly great privileges. As the woman is DEFICIENT IN INTELLIGENCE and of great lust, if she is given much money, much corruption will be the result." (bold and capital emphasis ours)
"The male is mentioned first in Q. 4:11 because the male is better than the female."
A modern Muslim writer named Ahmad Zaky Tuffaha states:
"God established the superiority of men over women by the above verse (the Qur'an 4:34) which prevents the equating of men and women. For here man is above the woman due to HIS INTELLECTUAL SUPERIORITY and his ability to administer and spend on the woman." (Al-Mar'ah wal- Islam, [Dar al-Kitab al-Lubnani, Beirut; First edition, 1985], p. 36; bold and capital emphasis ours)
These men were simply repeating the erroneous views of their prophet who said:
Narrated Abu Said Al-Khudri:
Once Allah's Apostle went out to the Musalla (to offer the prayer) on 'Id-al-Adha or Al-Fitr prayer. Then he passed by the women and said, "O women! Give alms, as I have seen that the majority of the dwellers of Hell-fire were you (women)." They asked, "Why is it so, O Allah's Apostle?" He replied, "You curse frequently and are ungrateful to your husbands. I have not seen anyone MORE DEFICIENT IN INTELLIGENCE and religion than you. A cautious sensible man could be led astray by some of you." The women asked, "O Allah's Apostle! What is deficient in our intelligence and religion?" He said, "Is not the evidence of two women equal to the witness of one man?" They replied in the affirmative. He said, "This is the deficiency in her intelligence. Isn't it true that a woman can neither pray nor fast during her menses?" The women replied in the affirmative. He said, "This is the deficiency in her religion." (Sahih al-Bukhari, Volume 1, Book 6, Number 301; see also Volume 2, Book 24, Number 541)
Narrated Abu Said Al-Khudri:
The Prophet said, "Isn't the witness of a woman equal to half of that of a man?" The women said, "Yes." He said, "This is because OF THE DEFICIENTCY OF A WOMANS MIND." (Sahih al-Bukhari, Volume 3, Book 48, Number 826)
Osama then writes:
2- In my translation, Allah Almighty Commands the men to beat the disloyal (either flirting wives or wives who are too defiant to their husbands as many male-hating feminists are today in the West) wives after the third warning. In his translation, it says to scourge (flog) them.
Does this mean that wives also have the right to beat disloyal husbands, husbands who flirt and/or are disrespectful and abusive to their wives? Can women beat husbands who are female-abusing male chauvinists? If not, why not? Why should men have this right and not women? Osamas twisted logic to defend wife beating simply illustrates how degrading Islam truly is to women, in stark contrast to the Holy Bible.
Let me further elaborate on this to clearly expose Sam Shamoun's intentional lies, especially that he himself is an Arabic speaking polytheist trinitarian pagan. So he should've noticed this obvious mistranslation very easily from his non-Islamic resource:
The Arabic word for "scourge" or "flog" is "ijlidu", which is derived from "jald", which means "a flog". This Arabic word is used in the following Noble Verses:
"The woman and the man guilty of adultery or fornication,- flog (ijlidu) each of them with a hundred stripes: Let not compassion move you in their case, in a matter prescribed by God, if ye believe in God and the Last Day: and let a party of the Believers witness their punishment. (The Noble Quran, 24:2)"
"And those who launch a charge against chaste women, and produce not four witnesses (to support their allegations),- flog them (ijliduhum) with eighty stripes; and reject their evidence ever after: for such men are wicked transgressors;- (The Noble Quran, 24:4)"
Osama accuses me of lying based on his mistaken assumption that scourge cannot be derived from the specific word used in S. 4:34, namely idrib. If this is so then I am not the only one who must be lying since even the following Muslim translated the word the same way Rodwell did:
... and SCOURGE them ... Muhammad M. Pickthall
Furthermore, Osama erroneously assumes that scourge only means flog. Osama fails to apply his own method consistently since later he will try to show that the word idrib can mean, among other things, to leave or abandon.(!?) Yet, when it comes to scourge he somehow fails to see that it too can have a broader range of meaning as the following dictionaries prove:
Main Entry: 2scourge
Function: transitive verb
Inflected Form(s): scourged; scourg·ing
Date: 13th century
1 : FLOG, WHIP
2 a : to punish severely b : AFFLICT c : to drive as if by blows of a whip d : CHASTISE
- scourg·er noun (Merriam-Webster)
scourge [ skurj ]
noun (plural scourg·es)1. tormentor: somebody or something that is perceived as an agent of punishment, destruction, or severe criticism
the scourge of my childhood
2. whip: a whip that is used for inflicting punishment
transitive verb (past scourged, past participle scourged, present participle scourg·ing, 3rd person present singular scourg·es)
1. punish somebody: to punish or criticize somebody severely
2. whip somebody: to whip somebody severely
[12th century. From Old French escorgier “to whip,” ultimately from Latin corrigia “thong, whip.”]
scourg·er noun (Encarta)
Thirdly, the word idrib does not rule out flogging. Idrib simply refers to beating, and one can choose from a variety of ways to beat someone. For instance, in the Quran God allegedly commands Job to fulfill his oath to beat his wife:
And take in your hand a green branch and BEAT (idrib) her with It and do not break your oath; surely We found him patient; most excellent the servant! Surely he was frequent in returning (to Allah). S. 38:44 Shakir
Here, Job uses a branch to strike his wife. There are other verses in the Quran where idrib is used in connection to striking someone or something with some sort of object, i.e. a rod, a sword etc. See below for examples.
There is therefore nothing in the word idrib or the context of 4:34 which rules out flogging as a means of beating ones wife. In fact, to see a modern example of a Muslim using an object to beat what he felt were rebellious women please check out the photos provided in the following link: http://www.faithfreedom.org/Gallery/3.htm
(Side note: I need to correct Osamas lies here regarding his claim that I am an Arabic speaking Christian. I am not an Arabic speaker nor have I ever claimed to be. Osama has presumably confused me with himself, since I have been informed that he is an Arabic speaker who just happens to be an idol worshipper, worshiping a false god and following a false prophet!)
Osama continues with his chanting:
The Arabic word used in Noble Verse 4:34 is "idribuhunna", which is derived from "daraba" which means "beat". The Arabic words that are derived from the word "daraba" don't necessarily mean "hit". The word "idribuhunna" for instance, could very well mean to "leave" them. It is exactly like telling someone to "beat it" or "drop it" in English.
Allah Almighty used the word "daraba" in Noble Verse 14:24 "Seest thou not how Allah sets (daraba) forth a parable? -- A goodly Word Like a goodly tree, Whose root is firmly fixed, And its branches (reach) To the heavens". "daraba" here meant "give an example". If I say in Arabic "daraba laka mathal", it means "give you an example".
Allah Almighty also used the word "darabtum", which is derived from the word "daraba" in Noble Verse 4:94, which mean to "go abroad" in the sake of Allah Almighty:
"O ye who believe! When ye go abroad (darabtum) In the cause of Allah, Investigate carefully, And say not to anyone Who offers you a salutation: 'Thou art none of a Believer!' Coveting the perishable good Of this life: with Allah Are profits and spoils abundant. Even thus were ye yourselves Before, till Allah conferred On you His favours: therefore Carefully investigate. For Allah is well aware Of all that ye do. (The Noble Quran, 4:94)"
So "daraba" literally means "beat", or "go abroad", or "give" but not in the sense to give something by hand, but rather to give or provide an example.
Important Note: Notice how Allah Almighty in Noble Chapter (Surah) 4 He used "daraba (4:34" and "darabtum (4:94)", which are both derived from the same root. He used both words in the same Chapter, which tells me that "daraba" in Noble Verse 4:34 means to desert or leave, since that's what its derived word meant in Noble Verse 4:94. The next section below will further prove my point.
I am sure there are more Noble Verses that used words derived from "daraba" in the Noble Quran, but these are the only ones I know of so far. In the case of Noble Verse 4:34 where Allah Almighty seems to allow men to hit their wives after the two warnings for ill-conduct and disloyalty, it could very well be that Allah Almighty meant to command the Muslims to "leave" the home all together and desert their wives for a long time in a hope that the wives would then come back to their senses and repent.
It is true that idrib can have a variety of meanings depending upon the context. The Concise Oxford English-Arabic Dictionary, Oxford University Press, 1982, ISBN 0-19-864321-7, p. 32, defines the Arabic word as:
beat1/bit/ (p.t. beat p.p. beaten)
beat a carpet
the village is off the beaten track
he managed to beat down the price
he was beaten up (Source; including a scanned image of the dictionary entry)
Yet instead of giving us examples where idrib is used in a similar manner to 4:34 (i.e. 38:44), Osama appeals to far-fetched verses which are not at all parallel with the passage in question.
The most amazing thing about this is that Osama appeals to 4:94, a verse that actually refutes his position!
O you who believe! when you go to WAR (darabtum) in Allah's way, make investigation, and do not say to any one who offers you peace: You are not a believer. Do you seek goods of this world's life! But with Allah there are abundant gains; you too were such before, then Allah conferred a benefit on you; therefore make investigation; surely Allah is aware of what you do. Shakir
Unless Osama wants to assert that the Muslims fought wars without weapons and didnt literally strike down their enemies, then this passage does nothing to prove his case. It proves the opposite of his claim and shows that husbands are to beat their women if they persist in their rebellion.
Here are some more verses where idrib clearly refers to a literal, physical striking:
And remember the time when Moses prayed for water for his people and WE said, ‘STRIKE (idrib) the rock with thy rod;’ And there gushed forth from it twelve springs, so that each tribe knew their drinking place. And they were told, ‘Eat and drink of what ALLAH has provided, and commit not iniquity in the earth, creating disorder.’ S. 2:60 Sher Ali
So We said: STRIKE (idriboohu) the (dead body) with part of the (Sacrificed cow), thus Allah brings the dead to life, and He shows you His signs so that you may understand. S. 2:73 Shakir
When your Lord revealed to the angels: I am with you, therefore make firm those who believe. I will cast terror into the hearts of those who disbelieve. Therefore STRIKE OFF (faidriboo) their heads and STRIKE OFF (waidriboo) every fingertip of them. S. 8:12 Shakir
And had you seen when the angels will cause to die those who disbelieve, SMITING (yadriboona) their faces and their backs, and (saying): Taste the punishment of burning. S. 8:50 Shakir
Then WE revealed to Moses: ‘STRIKE (idrib) the sea with thy rod.’ Thereupon it parted and every part looked like a huge mound. S. 26:63 Sher Ali
And take in your hand a green branch and BEAT (faidrib) her with It and do not break your oath; surely We found him patient; most excellent the servant! Surely he was frequent in returning (to Allah). S. 38:44 Shakir
So when you meet in battle those who disbelieve, then SMITE (fadarba) the necks until when you have overcome them, then make (them) prisoners, and afterwards either set them free as a favor or let them ransom (themselves) until the war terminates. That (shall be so); and if Allah had pleased He would certainly have exacted what is due from them, but that He may try some of you by means of others; and (as for) those who are slain in the way of Allah, He will by no means allow their deeds to perish. S. 47:4 Shakir
But how will it be when the angels cause them to die SMITING (yadriboona) their backs. S. 47:27 Shakir
We wonder why Osama didnt appeal to these passages? Was he aware of them and yet realized that quoting them would show that idrib refers to literal acts of beating and striking?
The foregoing examples demonstrate that there have to be good contextual reasons to assume that idrib doesnt refer to literal physical beating. The examples given by Osama provide those reasons for assuming that the word does not retain its normal meaning of beating due primarily to their respective contexts. But Osama has given us no reasons why idrib in 4:34 doesnt refer to actual beating.
This leads me to my third point. Muslim translators realized that the context of 4:34 points to idrib being a physical act:
... and BEAT them ... Shakir
... then BEAT them ... Asad
... and BEAT them ... Majid Fakhry
... and BEAT them ... Sarwar
... and (as a last resort) PUNISH them (mildly) ... Amatul & Abdul Mannan Omar
... and [finally], STRIKE them ... Saheeh International
... and [even] BEAT them [if necessary] ... T.B. Irving
... then you may (as a last alternative) BEAT them ... Khalifa
... and BEAT them ... Daryabadi
Do keep in mind that the words within parentheses are not part of the Arabic text. They are attempts of trying to smooth out what Muslims themselves presumably realized to be a major embarrassment and insult to women.
Notice also how non-Muslim translations render the passage:
... and BEAT them ... A.J. Arberry
... and BEAT them ... Dawood
Daryabadi was evidently troubled by this passage and felt it necessary to propose the following explanation to alleviate some of the problems posed by the text:
The fact must not be lost sight of that the Holy Word is addressed to peoples of all ages and of all grades and stages of social evolution; and it may well be that a remedy that is unthinkable in a particular grade of society is the only feasible and effective in another. (The Glorious Quran, Text, Translation & Commentary [The Islamic Foundation, 2001], p. 171, fn. 274)
Dr. Salih ibn Ghanim Al-Sadlaan has written a booklet on the issue of marital discord where he discusses wife beating. We reproduce his lengthy section here for our readers to see what Islam really teaches about the beating wives:
The Third Step: A Light Beating
Perhaps the solution to the problem requires some harshness and toughness. There are some people who cannot be rectified by good behavior and soft advice. Kindness and softness just makes such people more arrogant and haughty. However, if they are met with toughness, then they respond by cooling down and ending their defiance.
Yes, resorting to harshness may be a beneficial cure, if it in fact returns the household to its normal routine and brings the partners back together in love and mercy. In that case, it can be a positive cure and spiritual disciplining. It is not meant for revenge or punishment. It is instead meant to restore what has become improper and bring the disturbance to rest.
The beating is not for humiliation, nor for revenge, nor to disparage, nor to punish. In fact, it is meant it be a beating of DISCIPLINING, correcting and educating. It is done while in the state of a compassionate teacher and upbringer. It is not supposed to be a harsh way that may lead to disdain and separation. [Nor should it be done] such that it will cut off the relations and compassion between the two. Although it is a bitter medicine, however, more harmful than it for the woman is the disbanding and dissolution of the foundation of the family.
The jurists have given a general definition for the word "beating", as, "Name for the action THAT BRINGS ABOUT PAIN TO THE BODY, REGARDLESS OF WHETHER IT LEFT A MARK ON THE BODY OR NOT, AND REGARDLESS OF WHAT INSTRUMENT WAS USED IN STRIKING."
"Beating " may be divided into two types: (1) The beating which is violent and intense... and (2) the beating which is not violent and intense. The beating which is violent and intense is defined as, "The strong and harsh striking from which it is feared that a bone may be broken, the person injured, an extremity injured or the skin broken or disfigured." This type of striking is forbidden and prohibited by the Law. It is one of the illegal acts.
As for the striking which is not violent and intense, it is defined as, "The light beating which does not cause bleeding nor does one fear from it injury to life or limb or tearing of the skin, breakage or disfigurement." This type of striking is permissible in the case of nushooz, disobedience and opposition by the wife and when admonition and boycotting does not mend her ways. It is a means of DISCIPLINING, educating and reforming and directly affects the body of the woman. In fact, it is an awakening or physical admonition that Islam approves and permits in cases of necessity.
The Permissibility of This Form of Striking: Striking is permissible as is indicated BY THE BOOK, THE SUNNAH, CONSENSUS AND REASONING...
Al-Suddi said, "they are to be taken by their hands and disciplined." Al-Dhahhaak said, "The man is in charge of the woman and he orders her to obey Allah. If she refuses, he may strike her in a non-violent manner. He has a right over her because of his spending on her and his striving." Al-Qurtubi stated, "This verse implies that it is permissible for a man to give disciplinary beating to his wife."
From the Sunnah, there is the following evidence: The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said, "I advise you to treat women well. They are like prisoners under your authority. You have rights over them other than that unless they come with a clear illicit act. If they do that, then avoid them in their beds and beat them in a non-violent manner."
From the reports of the early generations, it is narrated from Asma bint Abu Bakr who said, "I was the fourth of four wives of al-Zubair. Whenever he would reprimand one of us, he would break off a branch from the wooden clothes hangers and beat her with it until he broke it over her."
In Mukhtasar Sunan Abu Dawud, it states, "The beating of the wife when they do not grant the rights of marriage is permissible; but only if it is a beating that is not violent." And in al-Ifsaah, ibn Hubairah states, "There is agreement that it is permissible for a man to beat his wife if she commits nushooz after he had admonished her and separated from her in the bed."
Therefore, the legality of beating women is not something strange to the reasoning or human inclination that thereby needs for it to be reinterpreted. It is a matter that needs to be resorted to when the environment has become evil and bad characters have taken over the situation. It is permissible if the husband views that it will make his wife return from her nushooz and stop the action she is taking. However, if the situation is resolved and the woman is changed simply by advising and she responds to that or she is changed by admonition or by being avoiding [sic] in the bed, then it is obligatory not to resort to beating her. Every different situation has its different ruling in the Law. However, under all circumstance, we are ordered to be gentle with women and never to oppress or wrong them.
Yes, although Islam permits beating it restricts it to its limited scope and it is enclosed by conditions that must be met. These are laid down so it is not resorted to for purposes other than refining and improving the situation. It is never to be resorted to out of revenge, humiliation or disdain. Furthermore, the striking must not be a vicious striking and must be done with something like a handkerchief, siwaak (the toothstick), hand, light stick or something similar to those. It should never exceed the minimum that is required in the given circumstances. It should also never be a strike to the parts of the womans body that form her beauty nor to harm her. These and others are part of the conditions behind that act. Finally, one may not strike the woman who becomes obedient to the husband ...
The strike cannot be one that causes bleeding, injury, deformation of an extremity, breaking of a bone. If, however, he goes beyond the limits and transgresses, then he is held responsible for the results of his acts of aggression.
The one who is familiar with the affairs of women knows full-well that there are some women whose behavior will not be rectified except by this form of disciplining, reprimanding and deterring. It will be sufficient for the husband to bring about reform in his wife while his emotions are gentle and free of any form of anger and hatred, void of any intention of revenge or transgression. That will suffice, by the will of Allah, to put an end to the disease and bring about a speedy recovery. (Marital Discord (al-Nushooz) its Definition, Cases, Causes, Means of Protection from it, and its Remedy from the Quran and Sunnah, translated by Jamal al-Din M. Zarabozo [Al-Basheer Company for Publications & Translations, Boulder, CO 1996], pp. 43-47; capital and underlined emphasis ours)
Even here one can sense the extreme difficulty the author obviously felt in trying to justify the beating of wives. His claim that the beating must be light does nothing to undermine the fact that wives shouldnt be beaten period. The author goes on to defend his position against the "enemies of Islam":
A Misconception and Its Refutation: The enemies of Islam find it very distasteful that Islamic Law allows such beating and they claim that this is a type of humiliation against the woman and an attack on her honor. However, we must say to them: YES, ISLAM HAS PERMITTED SUCH BEATINGS OF WIVES, but when is it allowed and for whom is it allowed?
It is only resorted to when the other forms of reconciliation, that is, admonition and boycotting, fail to return the woman from her sinful acts. In that case, what is the best that should be done? Should the woman be left to continue in her obstinance and to advance even further and further in the heat of her crime. [sic] Such will lead to more and more evil without correction and, therefore, destroy the sanctity of the household and shred its unity. Is that better or would it be better to take her by her hand and prevent her from the wrong she is doing? Which one is preferable, beating or the anguish of divorce and destroying the sanctity of the family and what it is constructed upon?
In addition, beating is a punishment that is accepted and sanctioned in all of the religions and legal codes. According to psychologists, sociologists, educators and others it leads to rectification and reformation.
Furthermore, the beating is constrained to what it has been sanctioned for. That is, it is only done when the husband believes that it will be a beneficial act in achieving the goal he desires, of restoring the proper balance in the household and defeating the defiant devil in the soul of the recalcitrant wife. Otherwise, if he does not believe it will be beneficial in bringing about that goal, then he is not allowed to beat her. This is because the beating is a means to rectify the behavior of the wife and, therefore, the means are not permissible if it is suspected that they will not result in the desired goal.
"In any case, beating is bitter medicine that the excellent and the free would not have to resort to. However, it does not leave the houses in all cases or it is something general for the refinement of both men and women." And guidance is from Allah. (Ibid., pp. 47-48; capital and underlined emphasis ours)
In light of the foregoing, do we really need to say anything else?
Osama continues with his mantra syndrome:
Noble Verses and Sayings that support the prohibition of any type of wife beating:
The following Noble Verses and Sayings from the Noble Quran and Prophet Muhammad peace be upon him respectively seem to very well support the above interpretation:
"...Do not retain them (i.e., your wives) to harm them...(The Noble Quran, 2:231)"
Narrated Mu'awiyah al-Qushayri: "I went to the Apostle of Allah (peace_be_upon_him) and asked him: What do you say (command) about our wives? He replied: Give them food what you have for yourself, and clothe them by which you clothe yourself, and do not beat them, and do not revile them. (Sunan Abu-Dawud, Book 11, Marriage (Kitab Al-Nikah), Number 2139)"
Narrated Mu'awiyah ibn Haydah: "I said: Apostle of Allah, how should we approach our wives and how should we leave them? He replied: Approach your tilth when or how you will, give her (your wife) food when you take food, clothe when you clothe yourself, do not revile her face, and do not beat her. (Sunan Abu-Dawud, Book 11, Marriage (Kitab Al-Nikah), Number 2138)"
"on the contrary live with them on a footing of kindness and equity. If ye take a dislike to them it may be that ye dislike a thing, and God brings about through it a great deal of good. (The Noble Quran, 4:19)"
In any how, the word "daraba" does not at all mean "flog" or "scourge" as the Arabic-speaking liar Sam Shamoun and his mistranslation falsely claim!
Whether you believe that "beat" in Noble Verse 4:34 is referring to either physical beating or just leaving the house, the point here is that the Noble Verse is not for all women. It is only for the bad ones who failed to accept the first two warnings. The third warning is a "beating". After that they have to get divorced if they can't agree to reconcile.
Osama continues to selectively quote from Sunan Abu Dawud, all the while failing to quote the rest of the section which shows that Muhammad rescinded his command regarding not beating wives. This lends further support for my claim that Osama started responding to my article even before first reading it all the way through.
In trying to explain away wife beating in Islam, Osama ends up both misquoting and misapplying verses from the Quran. Here is the context of 2:231 which Osama conveniently omitted:
Divorce must be pronounced twice and then (a woman) must be retained in honour or released in kindness. And it is not lawful for you that ye take from women aught of that which ye have given them; except (in the case) when both fear that they may not be able to keep within the limits (imposed by) Allah. And if ye fear that they may not be able to keep the limits of Allah, in that case it is no sin for either of them if the woman ransom herself. These are the limits (imposed by) Allah. Transgress them not. For whoso transgresseth Allah's limits: such are wrong-doers. And if he hath divorced her (the third time), then she is not lawful unto him thereafter until she hath wedded another husband. Then if he (the other husband) divorce her it is no sin for both of them that they come together again if they consider that they are able to observe the limits of Allah. These are the limits of Allah. He manifesteth them for people who have knowledge. When ye have divorced women, and they have reached their term, then retain them in kindness or release them in kindness. Retain them not to their hurt so that ye transgress (the limits). He who doeth that hath wronged his soul. Make not the revelations of Allah a laughing-stock (by your behaviour), but remember Allah's grace upon you and that which He hath revealed unto you of the Scripture and of wisdom, whereby He doth exhort you. Observe your duty to Allah and know that Allah is Aware of all things. And when ye have divorced women and they reach their term, place not difficulties in the way of their marrying their husbands if it is agreed between them in kindness. This is an admonition for him among you who believeth in Allah and the Last Day. That is more virtuous for you, and cleaner. Allah knoweth; ye know not. S. 2:229-232 Pickthall
The passage has nothing to do with wife beating but is referring to the issue of divorce, i.e. when divorce is proclaimed twice the man either releases his wife or seeks to be reconciled to her. More on this below.
O ye who believe! It is not lawful for you forcibly to inherit the women (of your deceased kinsmen), nor (that) ye should put constraint upon them that ye may take away a part of that which ye have given them, unless they be guilty of flagrant lewdness. But consort with them in kindness, for if ye hate them it may happen that ye hate a thing wherein Allah hath placed much good. And if ye wish to exchange one wife for another and ye have given unto one of them a sum of money (however great), take nothing from it. Would ye take it by the way of calumny and open wrong? How can ye take it (back) after one of you hath gone in unto the other, and they have taken a strong pledge from you? S. 4:19-21 Pickthall
Again, this is referring to a different issue from the issue of wife beating. The Quran is prohibiting men from inheriting widows, as well as forbidding husbands to take back from their divorcees the dowry they paid for the marriage. Furthermore, no one denies that men are commanded to treat their wives kindly, since Muslims are also commanded to treat their animals, their children and their slaves kindly also. But this does nothing to refute the fact that the Quran places women on the level of property which a man owns and can discipline her if she gets out of hand. Osama erroneously assumes that it is an either/or situation when in actuality it is a both/and. A Muslim man is to both treat his wife kindly as he does the rest of his property and beat her when she gets out of hand.
We omit Osamas discussion of divorce since it is not relevant to our topic. Osama tries to explain away the hadiths which mention the beating of wives and slaves:
In the first Hadith, the Prophet peace be upon him was not giving permission to men to lash their wives as long as it is not as bad as a slave would get it. It was part of the pagan Arabs' custom to brutally beat their disobedient slaves. Bilal, who became Prophet Muhammad's best friend, was beaten almost to death for embracing Islam. The Prophet here was only giving an example.
If Osama is saying that Muhammad was simply giving an example since he did in fact stop the beating of slaves, then he only ends up causing more problems for himself. What kind of example is this that allows women to be beaten, just not like slaves, while abolishing the practice of lashing slaves? Is Osama saying that Muhammad said it was okay to beat wives but not slaves? Why prohibit the one and allow the other?
Furthermore, Osama has failed to prove his point that Muhammad abolished this practice. The following hadiths that he presented prove the exact opposite:
Anyway, the Prophet himself forbade the beating of slaves, and considered them as "brothers":
"Zadhan reported that Ibn Umar called his slave and he found the marks (of beating) upon his back. He said to him: I have caused you pain. He said: No. But he (Ibn Umar) said: You are free. He then took hold of something from the earth and said: There is no reward for me even to the weight equal to it. I heard Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) as saying: He who beats a slave without cognizable offence of his or slaps him, then expiation for it is that he should set him free. (Translation of Sahih Muslim, The Book of Oaths (Kitab Al-Aiman), Book 015, Number 4079)"
Narrated Al-Ma'rur: At Ar-Rabadha I met Abu Dhar who was wearing a cloak, and his slave, too, was wearing a similar one. I asked about the reason for it. He replied, "I abused a person by calling his mother with bad names." The Prophet said to me, 'O Abu Dhar! Did you abuse him by calling his mother with bad names You still have some characteristics of ignorance. Your slaves are your brothers and Allah has put them under your command. So whoever has a brother under his command should feed him of what he eats and dress him of what he wears. Do not ask them (slaves) to do things beyond their capacity (power) and if you do so, then help them.' (Translation of Sahih Bukhari, Belief, Volume 1, Book 2, Number 29)"
Abu Huraira reported Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) as saying: "When the slave of anyone amongst you prepares food for him and he serves him after having sat close to (and undergoing the hardship of) heat and smoke, he should make him (the slave) sit along with him and make him eat (along with him), and if the food seems to run short, then he should spare some portion for him (from his own share) - (another narrator) Dawud said:" i. e. a morsel or two". 4097. (Translation of Sahih Muslim, The Book of Oaths (Kitab Al-Aiman), Book 015, Number 4096)"
Narrated Anas: "The Prophet said, 'None of you will have faith till he wishes for his (Muslim) brother [this includes slaves, since a slave is considered a brother as shown above] what he likes for himself.' (Translation of Sahih Bukhari, Belief, Volume 1, Book 2, Number 12)"
Let me quote the first hadith again, this time with added emphasis to see what Osama failed to grasp:
"Zadhan reported that Ibn Umar called his slave and he found the marks (of beating) upon his back. He said to him: I have caused you pain. He said: No. But he (Ibn Umar) said: You are free. He then took hold of something from the earth and said: There is no reward for me even to the weight equal to it. I heard Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) as saying: He who beats a slave WITHOUT COGNIZABLE OFFENCE OF HIS or slaps him, then expiation for it is that he should set him free.(Translation of Sahih Muslim, The Book of Oaths (Kitab Al-Aiman), Book 015, Number 4079)"
Interestingly, the version of Sahih Muslim in my possession actually reads:
"Zadhan reported that Ibn Umar called his slave and he found the marks (of beating) upon his back. He said to him: I have caused you pain. He said: No. But he (Ibn Umar) said: You are free. He then took hold of something from the earth and said: There is no reward for me even to the weight equal to it. I heard Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) as saying: He who beats a slave without cognizable offence of his or slaps him (WITHOUT ANY SERIOUS FAULT), then expiation for it is that he should set him free. (Sahih Muslim by Imam Muslim, Volume III & IV, rendered into English by Abdul Hamid Siddiqui [Kitab Bhavan Exporters & Importers, New Delhi-110002, India; 11th reprinted edition 1995], p. 883; capital emphasis ours)
The translator has a note stating:
The face is not the only index to the mind, but bears the identity of a person. It is by face that the man is chiefly recognized and his personality is reflected. Islam has forbidden slapping on the face as it is the most significant and prominent part of a mans body. There is a hadith in al-Jami a-Saghir in which Allahs Messenger (may peace be upon him) is reported to have said: When any one of you beats his servant, he should spare the face. (Ibid., p. 883, fn. 2097; underlined emphasis ours)
The foregoing shows that Muhammad wasnt prohibiting Muslims from physically disciplining their slaves, but only prevented them from abusing them. In other words, the Islamic traditions do not forbid the beating of slaves but only very harsh beatings, as well as preventing any slapping to the face. But just as in the case of the wife, there is simply no justification for any kind of slave beating even if the beating is not that harsh or not directed to the face.
In the second Hadith, there are few points to notice and mention:
1- The man failed to follow Noble Verse 4:34 which was sent by Allah Almighty -- that if we were to consider the "physical beating" interpretation of it as the valid one, and not the "leaving the house".
Osama is reading things into the hadith since there is nothing in the hadith to suggest that the man failed to follow 4:34. Here it is again:
Rifa'a divorced his wife whereupon 'AbdurRahman bin Az-Zubair Al-Qurazi married her. 'Aisha said that the lady (came), wearing a green veil (and complained to her (Aisha) of her husband and showed her a green spot on her skin caused by beating). It was the habit of ladies to support each other, so when Allah's Apostle came, 'Aisha said, "I have not seen any woman suffering AS MUCH AS THE BELIEVING WOMEN. Look! Her skin IS GREENER THAN HER CLOTHES!." When 'AbdurRahman heard that his wife had gone to the Prophet, he came with his two sons from another wife. She said, "By Allah! I have done no wrong to him but he is impotent and is as useless to me as this," holding and showing the fringe of her garment, 'Abdur-Rahman said, "By Allah, O Allah's Apostle! She has told a lie! I am very strong and can satisfy her but she is disobedient and wants to go back to Rifa'a." Allah's Apostle said, to her, "If that is your intention, then know that it is unlawful for you to remarry Rifa'a unless 'Abdur-Rahman has had sexual intercourse with you." Then the Prophet saw two boys with 'Abdur-Rahman and asked (him), "Are these your sons?" On that 'AbdurRahman said, "Yes." The Prophet said, "You claim what you claim (i.e. that he is impotent)? But by Allah, these boys resemble him as a crow resembles a crow," (Sahih al-Bukhari, Volume 7, Book 72, Number 715)
By reading things into the text that are nowhere articulated only provide additional proof that Osama just has nothing substantial to offer by way of response.
Osama goes on:
2- The woman was trying to get back with her first husband. In Islam, if a woman gets divorced or divorces herself from her husband through the Islamic court by "Khala'", then the only way she can get back with her husband, or her husband gets back to her is by HER MARRYING ANOTHER PERSON, HAVE SEXUAL INTERCOURSE WITH HIM, AND THEN GET A DIVORCE FROM HIM. This is to guarantee that divorce would not be a joke among Muslims.
3- The woman was claiming that her second husband was sexually no good. The husband disputed that, and brought his two sons from another marriage as a proof that he can perform sex. The Prophet peace be upon him then told the woman "by Allah, these boys resemble him as a crow resembles a crow".
Osama provides more proof that Muhammad is not Gods prophet and that the Quran is a false book. Osama is referring to the following passages:
"A divorce is only permissible twice: after that, the parties should either hold together on equitable terms, or separate with kindness. It is not lawful for you, (men), to take back any of your gifts (from your wives), except when both parties fear that they would be unable to keep the limits ordained by Allah. If ye (judges) do indeed fear that they would be unable to keep the limits ordained by Allah, there is no blame on either of them if she give something for her freedom. These are the limits ordained by Allah. So do not transgress them if any do transgress the limits ordained by Allah, such persons wrong (themselves as well as others). So if a husband divorces his wife (irrevocably), he cannot, after that, re-marry her until after she has married another husband and he has divorced her. In that case there is no blame on either of them if they re-unite, provided they feel that they can keep the limits ordained by Allah. Such are the limits ordained by Allah, which He makes plain to those who understand." S. 2:229-230
The Ahadith state:
Yahya related to me from Malik from al-Miswar ibn Rifaa al-Quradhi from az-Zubayr ibn Abd ar-Rahman ibn az-Zubayr that Rifaa ibn Simwal divorced his wife, Tamima bint Wahb, in the time of the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, three times. Then she married Abd ar-Rahman ibn az-Zubayr and he turned from her and could not consummate the marriage and so he parted from her. Rifaa wanted to marry her again and it was mentioned to the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, and he forbade him to marry her. He said, "She is not halal for you until she has tasted the sweetness of intercourse." (Malik's Muwatta, Book 28, Number 28.7.17)
Yahya related to me from Malik from Yahya ibn Said from al-Qasim ibn Muhammad that A'isha, the wife of the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said when asked whether it was permissible for a man to marry again a wife he had divorced irrevocably if she had married another man who divorced her before consummating the marriage, "Not until she has tasted the sweetness of intercourse." (Malik's Muwatta, Book 28, Number 28.7.18)
The man who makes a woman lawful for remarriage with her initial husband is called a muhalil. Yet Gods true word, the Holy Bible, classifies this marital reunion as an abomination to the LORD:
"If a man marries a woman who becomes displeasing to him because he finds something indecent about her, and he writes her a certificate of divorce, gives it to her and sends her from his house, and if after she leaves his house she becomes the wife of another man, and her second husband dislikes her and writes her a certificate of divorce, gives it to her and sends her from his house, or if he dies, then her first husband, who divorced her, is not allowed to marry her again after she has been defiled. That would be detestable in the eyes of the LORD. Do not bring sin upon the land the LORD your God is giving you as an inheritance." Deuteronomy 24:1-4
We submit that the preceding OT command does a much better job of insuring that Gods people do not take divorce lightly, especially when it is read in connection with the following citation:
"This is another thing you do: you cover the altar of the LORD with tears, with weeping and with groaning, because He no longer regards the offering or accepts it with favor from your hand. Yet you say, For what reason? Because the LORD has been a witness between you and the wife of your youth, against whom you have dealt treacherously, though she is your companion and your wife by covenant. But not one has done so who has a remnant of the Spirit. And what did that one do while he was seeking a godly offspring? Take heed then to your spirit, AND LET NO ONE DEAL TREACHEROUSLY AGAINST THE WIFE OF YOUR YOUTH. FOR I HATE DIVORCE, says the LORD, the God of Israel, and him who covers his garment with wrong, says the LORD of hosts. So take heed to your spirit, that you do not deal treacherously." Malachi 2:13-16 NASB
The foregoing truly highlights the vast difference between Gods true word, the Holy Bible, and the Quran. The reader can see how the Quran fails to compare to the true word of God on these issues.
Osama has the audacity to simply brush aside Aishas comments regarding the mistreatment of Muslim women:
4- Aisha's opinion about the woman's bruise doesn't prove or disprove anything. She got angry because she saw another woman badly beaten, which is perfectly fine and acceptable. But her emotions and opinions are not Islamic Verdicts!
On the contrary, AISHAS COMMENTS ARE STRONG PROOF OF HOW ISLAM ABUSES WOMEN. Aisha was angry PRECISELY BECAUSE OF THE ABUSE MUSLIM WOMEN WERE EXPERIENCING AT THE HANDS OF MUSLIM MEN. I say that she was quite justified in her anger.
Besides, Muhammad never rebuked the husband for hitting his wife so hard that it left a green bruise on her body. He was more concerned with the wife accusing the man of being impotent than he was of her well-being. This just goes to show how Muhammads teachings fail to compare with the inspired teachings of the holy and beloved Apostle Paul.
Osama responds to my accusation of his conveniently failing to quote ALL of Sunan Abu Dawud in context which shows that Muhammad did permit wife beating under certain circumstances:
As I mentioned in point #5 above:
5- Not a single Muslim scholar would disagree with the following:
The Hadiths have serious problems in historical documentations! Meaning, a Hadith might be documented today, but we don't know when it came and what was its purpose. In this case, WE DO NOT KNOW if this Hadith came before or after Noble Verse 4:34 above! If it came before the Noble Verse, then this clearly shows that Allah Almighty had stepped in and resolved the issue of when WIFE BEATING WOULD BE ALLOWED, and it would be only allowed once (if we were to take the "physical beating" interpretation and not "leaving the house" as the valid one!).
Osamas red herring does nothing to resolve the issue for him. The exact time frame or historical circumstances surrounding the situation mentioned within a particular hadith is irrelevant to our discussion. What is relevant to our discussion is that the hadiths as a whole permit wife beating. Osamas claim that wife beating is only allowed once is a further indication of just how desperate Osama is to defend what is simply indefensible. THERE IS SIMPLY NO JUSTIFICATION FOR A MAN TO BEAT HIS WIFE BECAUSE HE FEARS REBELLION ON HER PART, EVEN IF HE BEATS HER ONLY ONE TIME.
Secondly, Surah 4:34 nowhere says that a man can only beat his wife one time. The text actually suggests that he can beat her anytime he senses rebellion from her. In theory, the husband can (1)admonish his wife, (2)banish her to a different bed, (3)beat her, (4)reconcile with her if she repents and then start the process over again if he senses that his wife is being rebellious once more.
As to me "conveniently failing to mention the hadiths which follow RIGHT AFTER", I did not do that at all! The sequence/order of Hadiths does not AT ALL mean that the earlier ones were mentioned before the later ones. The Hadiths were documented as they were compiled and narrated by people.
No one knows which Hadith came before the other.
To me personally, by reading this Hadith:
Narrated Mu'awiyah al-Qushayri: "I went to the Apostle of Allah (peace_be_upon_him) and asked him: What do you say (command) about our wives? He replied: Give them food what you have for yourself, and clothe them by which you clothe yourself, and do not beat them, and do not revile them. (Sunan Abu-Dawud, Book 11, Marriage (Kitab Al-Nikah), Number 2139)"
It clearly tells me that the Prophet told this Hadith after the one Sam Shamoun mentioned. The reason for this is because my Hadith is a general one that covers all aspects, while his Hadith was based on an incident.
Also, if the interpretation of "physically leaving" instead of "physically beating" in Noble Verse 4:34 above is true, then the Hadith I mentioned is clearly a great support for this Noble Verse's interpretation! The Noble Verse would also be a great support for the Hadith.
But at any rate, Sam Shamoun's Hadith does not nullify my Hadith. However, Noble Verse 4:34 does nullify his Hadith, because the physical beating (if this is the correct interpretation) would not be allowed at any time the man wishes!
It is quite obvious that Osama didnt even read the ahadith clearly since if he had he would have found that the one he quoted is obviously earlier than those permitting wife beating. How do we know? Well, here again is the hadith:
Narrated Abdullah ibn AbuDhubab:
Iyas ibn Abdullah ibn AbuDhubab reported the Apostle of Allah (peace_be_upon_him) as saying: DO NOT BEAT ALLAH'S HANDMAIDENS, but when Umar came to the Apostle of Allah (peace_be_upon_him) and said: Women have become emboldened towards their husbands, HE (the Prophet) GAVE PERMISSION TO BEAT THEM. Then many women came round the family of the Apostle of Allah (peace_be_upon_him) complaining against their husbands. So the Apostle of Allah (peace_be_upon_him) said: Many women have gone round Muhammad's family complaining against their husbands. They are not the best among you. (Sunan Abu Dawud, Book 11, Number 2141)
Note that Muhammad gives the general statement that Allahs handmaidens should not be beaten, that is until Umar complained about the attitude of the wives. Muhammad then changes his mind and starts allowing the husbands to beat women who became bold towards their husbands.
In a sermon given in his last pilgrimage Muhammad went on to confirm the permissibility of beating a rebellious wife:
Narrated Amr ibn al-Ahwas al-Jushami
Amr heard the Prophet (peace be upon him) say in his farewell address on the eve of his Last Pilgrimage, after he had glorified and praised Allah, he cautioned his followers: 'Listen! Treat women kindly; they are like prisoners in your hands. Beyond this you do not owe anything from them. Should they be guilty of flagrant misbehaviour, you may remove them from your beds, and BEAT THEM but do not inflict upon them any severe punishment. Then if they obey you, do not have recourse to anything else against them. Listen! You have your rights upon your wives and they have their rights upon you. Your right is that they shall not allow anyone you dislike, to trample your bed and do not permit those whom you dislike to enter your home. Their right is that you should treat them well in the matter of food and clothing.
Transmitted by Tirmidhi. (Al-Tirmidhi, Number 104 ALIM CD-ROM Version)
Osama cannot use the lame excuse that the date of the sermon is unknown, and therefore cannot be used to determine whether this was said before or after 4:34, since this was said towards the end of Muhammads life.
We conclude this section. The other sections to follow shortly, Lord Jesus willing.
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