Knowledge & Wisdom

Muslim Women Marriage

1.Who is an ideal wife?

The Holy Prophet (Peace and Blessings be upon him) said:

“There are four factors for which a woman is contracted into marriage: her assets, the family she belongs to, her beauty and her adherence to faith. I wish you wed both woman and faith” (Bukhari, Muslim)

The Holy Prophet (Peace and Blessings be upon him) also said:

“Nothing among the choicest blessings of this world is better than a virtuous wife” (Ibn Majah)

A woman who most adheres to Islam is the ideal wife. A woman may be married for her wealth, her rank, and her beauty. She must have a respectable family background. She must possess the attributes of chastity and sensitivity. She must be content with a moderate life and not be lavish. Waste of money is an indication of an irresponsible wife.

2. Are you allowed seeing the man who proposes to you?

It is necessary for a man to see the woman he intends to marry, and for the woman to see the man she intends to marry. Meeting the woman who a man intends to marry is allowed only in the presence of a mahram, with whom the girl is forbidden to marry. The parts of your body that are allowed to be seen by the man are your face and hands as they can give one an idea of her beauty and built.

3. Can the fiancé meet each other in private?

No. Some family members of hers should be present during the meeting. It is unlawful in Islam to meet a woman in private. It is possible also that the engagement can be later broken and thus the honour and purity of the girl is called to question.

4. Upon whom lies the decision for marriage?

The only one who has the full right to accept marriage is the woman herself. She should not be pressurized to marry against her wishes and consent. If the woman refuses, the authority of the guardian cannot be exercised against her will.

5. What should the amount of the dowry (Mahr) be?

Mahr (dowry) is a marriage gift from the bridegroom to his bride, which becomes her exclusive property and right. It is the sum of money or other property promised by the husband to be paid or delivered to the wife. There is no marriage if there is no Mahr. The man should have something to give his bride as a dowry, whatever its value may be. However, he should not be extravagant and go beyond his means in fixing the amount of dowry. The husband has no right to demand back any of the dowry given to his wife or jewellery, clothes, etc. given to her as a gift. It is against the moral principles of Islam to ask for the return of anything given to another as a present or a gift. The Mahr is the right of the female and she can stipulate, agree, or disagree with the set amount in cash or kind. This has to be clarified with her by her representative (Wakeel) in the presence of the witnesses when he takes consent from her for marriage with a man.

6. Are Muslim women allowed to marry non-Muslims?

No. The Holy Quran absolutely prohibits a Muslim woman from marrying a non-Muslim (Buddhist, Hindu, Jew, Christian, etc).

The Holy Quran says:

“O you who believe! When there comes to you believing women refugees, examine (and test) them. Allah knows best as to their faith. If you ascertain that they are believers, then do not send them back to the unbelievers. They are not lawful (wives) for the unbelievers, nor are the unbelievers their lawful husbands” (60:10)

According to this verse, when a woman leaves her home on account of her belief in Islam and comes to the believers, they are not allowed to send her back to the unbelievers. This is because unbelievers cannot treat Muslim women in marriage according to the rules of Islam. They will have no regard for Halaal and Haraam. They do not care about what is right and what is wrong. The non-Muslim husband will always have the upper hand with his Muslim wife and she will be obliged to follow what he says. It is sad to see so many of our Muslim sisters married to non-Muslim men for the sake of “love”. After marriage, they begin to consume Haraam food. They even begin observing their festivals. Their children are eventually brought up as non-Muslims. Most are Muslims only by name. Many eventually change their faith and become non-Muslims. May Almighty Allah save us from this evil! What is even more disgusting is that the non-Muslim husband converts to Islam just for the sake of the girl’s parents, but after marriage reverts to his original faith!

7. Are Muslim men allowed to marry more than one wife?

(Polygamy is when a man is allowed to have more than one wife)

Yes. Almighty Allah says in the Holy Quran says:

“If you fear that you will not be able to deal justly with the orphans, marry women of your choice, two or three or four; but if you fear that you will not be able to deal justly with them, then only one” (4:3)

However, there are certain conditions laid down for one who wants to take more than one wife:

7.1 He must have enough financial resources to look after the needs of the additional wives that he has taken.

7.2 He must do equal justice to all of them. Each wife should be treated equally in matters of food, residence, clothing, and everything else.

If a man feels that he will not be able to treat another wife with equality and justice or he does not have the means to support another wife, he should limit himself to one wife.

The Holy Quran says:

“If you fear that you will not be able to do justice, then marry only one”


8. In which situations is polygamy allowed?

The husband is allowed to take another wife in the following situations:

8.1 When the wife is suffering from a serious disease or illness. (E.g. Paralysis, epilepsy, etc.).

8.2 When it is proved by medical doctors that she is unable to bear children.

8.3 When she is of unsound mind.

8.4 When the woman has become old and weak and can no more look after the house and property of the husband.

8.5 When she has a bad character, which cannot be reformed.

8.6 When she has moved away from her husband’s house and has become disobedient.

8.7 When there is a war and there are many widows, etc.

Polygamy prevents husbands from having secret love affairs and keeping mistresses. If a man wants to have a relationship with another woman, he must marry her. Islam allows them to marry other women so that it saves them from Zina (adultery) and safeguards their Imaan. All sexual relations outside of marriage are prohibited.

9. Is a Muslim woman allowed to have many husbands? (This is called polyandry)

No. This is not allowed in Islam. If she has to bear children from such a marriage, nobody will know who the true father is. There will a problem when the inheritance is being distributed. It is possible for a man to have more than one wife and please all of them, but for a woman to please more than one husband seems impossible. A woman may bear children from only one husband. Therefore, polyandry is forbidden in Islam.

10. Which relations are not allowed to marry in Islam?

The Holy Quran states:

“Prohibited to you (for marriage) are: your mothers, daughters, sisters, father's sisters, mother's sisters; brother's daughters, sister's daughters; foster mothers (who suckled you); foster sisters; your wives' mothers; your step daughters under your guardianship; born of your wives to whom you have gone in, -no prohibition if you have not gone in:- (Those who have been) wives of your sons preceeding from your loins; And two sisters in wedlock at the same time; Except for what is past; For Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful. Also (prohibited are) women already married, ...” (Sura Nisaa: Verses 23-24)

The following relations cannot marry each other in Islam: mother and son, father and daughter, brother and sister, paternal aunt and nephew, maternal uncle and niece, step-father and daughter, step-mother and son, mother-in-law and son-in-law, father-in-law and daughter-in-law, wife’s sister and brother-in-law (during sister’s lifetime) and foster relations.