The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) encouraged marrying women who are religiously committed, as he said: “Women may be married for four things: their wealth, their lineage, their beauty and their religious commitment. Choose the one who is religiously-committed, may your hands be rubbed with dust (i.e., may your prosper).” Narrated by al-Bukhari, 5090; Muslim, 1466.
A religiously committed muslim woman is to be sought for marriage as the Prophet told us as our purpose in life is to worship Allah and a religious woman would help us to do that and make our children ongoing charity for us even after our death, now what are the characteristics of this greatly admired woman?
A woman with the right aqeedah i.e; she is a Muwahid who has not fallen in innovations and other misguidance is the right woman as she is the home maker and will have a great impact on the husband and children.
- An obedient woman, who obeys her husband:
It was narrated that Abu Hurayrah said: It was said to the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him): Which of women is best? He said: “The one who makes (her husband) happy when he looks at her, obeys him when he tells her to do something, and does not disobey him with regard to herself or her wealth in a way that he dislikes.” (Narrated by al-Nasaa’i (3131)) ‘
Three things are mentioned here in this hadith-
(i) When he looks at her, he is happy with her: her religious commitment, attitude, behaviour and appearance.
(ii) When he is away from her, she protects his honour and his wealth.
(iii) If he tells her to do something, she obeys him, so long as he does not tell her to commit sin..
Al-Ansari said, “The woman is the key to the security in every society and the foundation of the family.” (Al-Majmu’1/173)
- Enjoins her husband to do good deeds and stops from bad deeds.
A good wife will always advise her husband to do good and will have better ways to stop him from doing anything haram. Allah says, “…They believe in Allah and the Last Day, and they enjoin what is right and forbid what is wrong and hasten to good deeds. And those are among the righteous.” (3:114)
It is reported that Umar ibn Al Khattab said, “There is no goodness in people who don’t give advice and there is no goodness in people who don’t like to be advised.” (Risaalaat Al-Mustarshideen, 71)
- She should fulfill her husband’s rights with regard to his wealth and herself, even when her husband is absent.
“If a man is married with a righteous wife, he will live a harmonious life, even if he is poor.” (Sh Salih Al Fawzan, Al-Ittihaf, pg 858)
Allah says in the Quran:
“Therefore the righteous women are devoutly obedient (to Allah and to their husbands), and guard in the husband’s absence what Allah orders them to guard (e.g. their chastity and their husband’s property).” [al-Nisa’ 4:34].
Shaykh ‘Abd al-Rahmaan al-Sa’di (may Allaah have mercy on him) said:
“guard in the husband’s absence” means: they are obedient to their husbands and even in their absence they guard themselves and their husband’s wealth, seeking the help of Allah in that, because no one can do that by himself or herself, for the self is inclined towards evil, but the one who puts his trust in Allah, He will suffice him and help him in his religious and worldly affairs.
Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah (may Allah have mercy on him) said:
A righteous wife will be with her righteous husband for many years, and she is the one who is meant in the hadeeth in which the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “This world is temporary conveniences and the best of its comforts is a believing wife, who when you look at her she pleases you and if you tell her to do something she obeys you, and if you are away from her she protects you with regard to herself and your wealth.”
- Doing acts of worship and obedience, and refraining from haraam things.
Al-Khateeb al-Sharbeeni al-Shaafa’i (may Allah have mercy on him) said:
According to the hadeeth: “If a woman prays her five (daily prayers), fasts her month (Ramadaan), guards her chastity and obeys her husband, it will be said to her: Enter Paradise by whichever of the gates of Paradise you wish.” Narrated by Ahmad (1664)
- She should have knowledge and seek it:
Having knowledge of the deen is important to do all of the above.
Therefore, women possessing these qualities are desirable for marriage, even though we should keep in mind that the level of each of these characteristics may differ in different women but the more modest, knowledgeable and devoted to worship a woman is, the more desirable she is as a wife.
Ahmad ibn Harb said, “if six characteristics are gathered in a woman her goodness is perfected,
- Guarding her five prayers
- Yielding to her husband
- Pleasing her Lord
- Guarding her tongue from backbiting and gossiping
- Forsaking worldly possessions
- Being patient following tragedy
(Siyar A’lam An-Nubala)
May Allah give our youth spouses who are better for them here and in the hereafter. Ameen
“A pious woman, even if she’s not stunningly beautiful, her character and religion make her attractive.” (Shakyh Ibn Uthaymeen, Sharh Riyadh As-Saliheen, No. 280)