Prophet's marriages, Circumcision, Astrology and rebirth
Mu' meneen Brothers and Sisters,
As Salaam Aleikum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh. (May Allah's Peace, Mercy and Blessings be upon all of you)
One of our brothers/sisters has asked this question:
As Salaam Aleikum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh
Why did our beloved prophet married twelve times even though the maximum is four?
Why is it necessary for all the Muslim men to do circumcision? What are its benefits?
What does Islam says about astrology? Do we have to believe in all the star signs and predictions?
Does Islam believes in the rebirth theory?
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Prophet's marriages, Circumcision, Astrology and rebirth
In the name of Allah, We praise Him, seek His help and ask for His forgiveness. Whoever Allah guides none can misguide, and whoever He allows to fall astray, none can guide them aright. We bear witness that there is no one (no idol, no person, no grave, no prophet, no imam, no dai, nobody!) worthy of worship but Allah Alone, and we bear witness that Muhammad(saws) is His slave-servant and the seal of His Messengers.
Q-1: Why did our beloved prophet married twelve
times even though the maximum is four?
The law in Islam is that a man or a woman may marry any number of times; but at any one time, a woman is permitted to have only one husband, and the man, at any one time, is permitted to have a maximum of four wives.
The Messenger of Allah (saws) married a total of 11 times in his life; but the maximum number of wives he had at any one time was nine.
When Allah revealed the aayah restricting the believers to a maximum of four wives, it was the norm of the times that most of the believers had more than four wives; and to comply with the command of Allah Subhanah, they divorced a number of their wives and kept a maximum of four. These divorced women then married other believers, if they wished to do so.
Allah Subhanah declared in the Holy Quran that the Prophets wives were the Mothers of the Believers, and forbade anyone to marry the wives of the Messenger (saws), if he divorced them or after he died.
Allah says in the Holy Quran Chapter 33 Surah Ahzaab verse 53 (part):
It is not at all permissible that you should trouble the Messenger of Allah (saws); nor is it permissible that you should marry his wives after him. This is a grave offence in the sight of Allah.
When the aayah restricting the believers to a maximum of four wives was revealed, the Messenger of Allah (saws) had four wives, namely: Hadrat Aisha, Hadrat Saudah, Hadrat Hafsah, and Hadrat Umm-Salamah. Then Allah Subhanah Himself commanded the Prophet (saws) to marry his fifth wife, Hadrat Zainab, who was the divorcee of his adopted son, Hadrat Zaid ibn Harith (r.a.).
In the days of ignorance, the divorced wife of an adopted son was illegal to the man who adopted that son. Islam made this permissible, and to break this false custom once and for all, Allah Subhanah Himself commanded the Prophet (saws) to marry the divorcee of his adopted son, and make Hadrat Zainab his fifth wife.
Allah says in the Holy Quran Chapter 33 Surah Ahzaab verse 37:
(O Prophet) remember the time when you were saying to the man (Hadrat Zaid), whom Allah as well as you had favored, Keep your wife and fear Allah. You were at that time keeping hidden in your heart that which Allah intended to reveal. You were fearing the people, whereas Allah has a greater right that you should fear Him. So, when Zaid had fulfilled his desire of her (Hadrat Zainab), We married her to you, so that there remains no hindrance for the believers in regard to the wives of their adopted son, when they have fulfilled their desire with them. And Allahs Command had to be carried out.
Besides the above, Allah Subhanah gave special permission and gave certain conditions to the Prophet (saws) to take on extra wives after his fifth wife, Hadrat Zainab, and made it absolutely clear in the Quran, that this permission was only for the Prophet (saws), in accordance with Divine Wisdom.
Allah says in the Holy Quran Chapter 33 Surah Ahzaab verses 50-52:
O Prophet, We have made lawful to you those of your wives, whose dowry you have paid, and those women who came into your possession out of the slave-girls granted by Allah; and the daughters of your paternal uncles and aunts, and of your maternal uncles and aunts, who have migrated with you; and the believing woman who gives herself to the Prophet, if the Prophet may desire to marry her. This privilege is for you only, not for the other believers. We know what restrictions We have imposed on the other believers concerning their wives and slave-girls. (You have been given an exception) so that there may be no hindrance to you; and Allah is Oft Forgiving, Most Merciful. You are granted the option that you may keep aside any of your wives you please, and keep to yourself any of them you please; and call back any of them you had set aside. There is no blame on you in this regard. Thus, it is expected that their eyes will be cooled and they will not grieve, and will all remain well satisfied with whatever you give them. Allah knows whatever is in your hearts, for Allah is All Knowing, All Forbearing. No other women are lawful to you after this, nor are you allowed to have other wives instead of them, even if their beauty may be very pleasing to you. You may, however, have slave-girls. Allah is watchful over everything.
And one of the blessings of the many marriages of the Prophet (saws) was that a huge percentage of the traditions of the Messenger of Allah (saws) are related by his wives. Most, if not all the deeds that the Prophet (saws) did in the secrecy of his house, were related to the believers by his many wives, so that the believers may have a perfect example of a perfect human being to follow.
It is narrated in an authentic tradition that the Messenger of Allah (saws) said, Relate from me, even if it is one sentence.
Almost all the leaders of mankind, have two lives. The one which is public is published and for all to see, hear, and know. The other life they live is private with their wives and children, and in the secrecy of their house. This life all the leaders try to keep secret from their followers and subjects.
But the whole life of the Messenger of Allah (saws) was to be a perfect example for all mankind, until the end of time. Thus, his public life, and his private life, had to be made available for all the believers, so that they may follow the perfect man in all his deeds. No leader in the annuls of time have allowed this level of transparency like the leader of the believers, The Last Messenger of Allah (saws).
And his wives were instrumental in relating the hadiths of the Messenger (saws), which he did in the privacy of their house and their bedrooms.
Q-2: Why is it necessary for all the Muslim men
to do circumcision? What are its benefits?
The act of circumcision is a preferred Sunnah; not only of our beloved Prophet, Mohamed (saws), but it is the Sunnah of the father of the Prophets, Prophet Ibraheem (a.s.). Besides, circumcision is the norm not only in Islam, but also in the deen of the People of the Book (the Jews and the Christians).
The benefits are mostly in relation to hygiene; and modern medicine has indeed proved that having a circumcised organ is more hygienic than an uncircumcised organ. Today, most doctors in the developed countries highly recommend that a male baby be circumcised; not because of a religious doctrine, but because it is proven that circumcision is more hygienic.
Q-3: What does Islam says about astrology? Do we
have to believe in all the star signs and predictions?
It is absolutely prohibited for a believer to seek his fortune, or find out about his future, through the movement of the stars, star signs, or any other thing or device! The Messenger of Allah (saws) called the people who read stars, liars; and invoked the curse of Allah on the ones who tried to read the stars, and the ones who went to them to seek their fortune or future.
The so-called knowledge of astrology, or the deciphering the happenings of the future by studing the position of the stars or any heavenly objects, and the so-called star-signs are nothing more than absolute lies, whims, conjecture, and guess-works of ignorant people. There is absolutely no reality and relation between the movement of the stars and the events that take place on this earth!
Everything that happens in the heavens and the earth, is in the Absolute Control and Sole Domain of the All Powerful, All Knowing Lord of the Worlds. No star, no sun, no moon, and absolutely nothing and no one in the universe has the power to bring about any good or evil on anyone. All Power and All Strength is vested in the Hands of Allah Subhanah Alone.
To believe in astrology, and to believe in the prediction of the star-signs, palm-reading, etc. is a form and manifestation of the heinous sin of shirk; and all the believers must abstain from this evil deed.
The believers are commanded to abstain from all these false beliefs, and put their trust in Allah Subhanah Alone.
Allah says in the Holy Quran Chapter 3 Surah Ale Imran verses160:
If Allah helps you, none can overcome you! And if Allah forsakes you, who is there, then, after Allah that can help you? Therefore, the true believers should trust in Allah Alone.
Allah says in the Holy Quran Chapter 10 Surah Yunus verses 106-107:
And do not call besides Allah, any being that can neither do you any good nor any harm. For if you will do so, you shall be one of the doers of wrong. If Allah afflicts you with a calamity, there is none to remove it, but He Himself. Likewise, if Allah wills to bestow a favor on you, there is none to withhold Allahs bounty. He bestows His bounty on anyone of His servants He wills. And He is The Forgiving, The Merciful.
Q-4: Does Islam believes in the rebirth theory?
In light of the guidance and teachings of the Quran and Sunnah, a human being has two lives only. One is the life that he lives in this world, and the other is when he will be given life again to live the eternal and ever lasting life of the Hereafter.
Islam absolutely does not believe in the rebirth theory as believed by the Hindus or other polytheists, whereby one takes an x number of births to be born as a human being; and depending on his deeds, he goes back into the cycle of rebirth!
The rebirth theory is absolutely baseless, and has no relation to reality! It is absolutely illogical and irrational. If the theory was correct, the population of the world would be stagnant, because rebirth would basically mean that the same souls would keep coming back into other bodies! But it is basic knowledge, that the population of the world has increased exponentially over time. At the beginning of the last century, the world population was somewhere around 1 billion; and today it is about 6 billion. If the rebirth theory was indeed correct, this would never have been the case!
The belief in Islam is that this life is a testing period for the human being, who has been given two things which the Creator has not given to any other (except the Jinns):
- Intelligence and the Power of Reasoning.
- A Free Will to choose whatever path one chooses to live his life.
The one who, with his intelligence and power of reasoning, recognizes his Creator through his Signs and Attributes, and of his own free will, submits his will to Him, and lives his life according to His Guidance, passes the test.
The one who, with his intelligence and power of reasoning and of his own free will, denies his Creator and His Signs, follows his lusts and desires, and invents his own way of life, fails the test miserably.
The life of this world is a test, and the results will be declared whether one passed or failed this test, in the life of the Hereafter. Only the human beings and the jinns, who are the only ones who have been given intelligence and a free will, will have an accounting in the life of the Hereafter.
Whatever written of Truth and benefit is only due to Allahs Assistance and Guidance, and whatever of error is of me. Allah Alone Knows Best and He is the Only Source of Strength.
Your Brother in Islam,