Prayer Time

  |      |      |   The Message of Islam:

Her name is Khawla bint Tha'labah. It's said that it's Khuwaila, but the most agreed is that it's Khawla. It's also said that her name is Khawla bint Hakim. Others said that it's Khawla bint Malik bin Tha'labah bin Asram bin Fahr bin Tha'labah.

The story of Khawla bint Malik bin Tha'labah is a well-known story in the Islamic history. She was the woman whose argument Allah listened to, and is mentioned in the Quran. The 58th chapter of the Quran named  Al-Mujadila, the name means "The pleading woman" which was derived from her reference.

In the pre-Islamic era, there was a tradition called “Thihar” that used to be practiced by men who are upset with their wives or want to punish them; Thihar means that a man swears -with specific words- saying that his wife is not his wife anymore and that she is to him like his mother or sister. This is not considered a divorce. Rather the wife is still a wife but only by name.

Khawla (may Allah be pleased with her) has experienced this situation and exemplified patience while standing firm in her beliefs. She persevered until she got the truth. She wanted to stand up for her rights and the rights of women, while maintaining her love for her husband. She said in the Hadith recorded by Abu Dawud:

[ظَاهَرَ مِنِّي زَوْجِي أَوْسُ بْنُ الصَّامِتِ فَجِئْتُ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم أَشْكُو إِلَيْهِ وَرَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم يُجَادِلُنِي فِيهِ وَيَقُولُ ‏"‏ اتَّقِي اللَّهَ فَإِنَّهُ ابْنُ عَمِّكِ ‏"‏ ‏.‏ فَمَا بَرِحْتُ حَتَّى نَزَلَ الْقُرْآنُ ‏{‏ قَدْ سَمِعَ اللَّهُ قَوْلَ الَّتِي تُجَادِلُكَ فِي زَوْجِهَا ‏}‏ إِلَى الْفَرْضِ فَقَالَ ‏"‏ يُعْتِقُ رَقَبَةً‏"‏.‏ قَالَتْ لاَ يَجِدُ. قَالَ ‏"‏ فَيَصُومُ شَهْرَيْنِ مُتَتَابِعَيْنِ ‏"‏‏.‏ قَالَتْ يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ إِنَّهُ شَيْخٌ كَبِيرٌ مَا بِهِ مِنْ صِيَامٍ‏.‏ قَالَ ‏"‏ فَلْيُطْعِمْ سِتِّينَ مِسْكِينًا"‏‏.‏ قَالَتْ مَا عِنْدَهُ مِنْ شَىْءٍ يَتَصَدَّقُ بِهِ قَالَتْ فَأُتِيَ سَاعَتَئِذٍ بِعَرَقٍ مِنْ تَمْرٍ قُلْتُ يَا رَسُولَ اللَّهِ فَإِنِّي أُعِينُهُ بِعَرَقٍ آخَرَ.‏ قَالَ ‏"‏ قَدْ أَحْسَنْتِ اذْهَبِي فَأَطْعِمِي بِهَا عَنْهُ سِتِّينَ مِسْكِينًا وَارْجِعِي إِلَى ابْنِ عَمِّكِ"].  

[My husband, Aws ibn as-Samit, pronounced the words of Thihar (i.e. he said: You are like my mother's back to me). So I came to the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him), complaining to him about my husband. The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) argued with me and said: "Fear Allah; he is your cousin". I continued (complaining) until the Qur'anic verses came down: {Certainly has Allah heard the speech of the one who argues with you, [O Muhammad], concerning her husband…} (Qur'an 58:1) till the prescription of expiation. He (peace be upon him) then said: "He should set free a slave." I said: He cannot afford it. He said: "He should fast for two consecutive months". I said: Messenger of Allah, he is an old man; he cannot keep fasts. He said: "He should feed sixty poor people". I said: He has nothing which he may give in alms. At that moment an araq (i.e. date-basket holding fifteen or sixteen sa's) was brought to him. I said: I shall help him with another date-basket ('araq). He said: "You have done well. Go and feed sixty poor people on his behalf, and return to your cousin"] (Sunan Abi Dawud 2214). 

She maintained her high standing through time, and people, including the 'Umar (may Allah be pleased with him), the second caliph, paid great attention to her sayings.

One day, she met `Umar al-Khattab (may Allah be pleased with him) outside the mosque, when al-Jarud al-`Abdi was with him. `Umar, who was the Caliph at that time, greeted her, and she said to him, "O `Umar, I remember you when you were called `Umayr in the market place of `Ukaz, taking care of the sheep with your stick. So fear Allah, the Exalted, in your role as Caliph taking care of the people, and know that the one who fears the threat of punishment in the Hereafter realizes that it is not far away, and the one who fears death fears missing some opportunities in this life." Al-Jarud said: You have spoken too harshly to Amir al-Mu'minin, woman! `Umar said: "Let her be. Do you not know that this is Khawlah, to whose words Allah Almighty listened from above the seven heavens? By Allah Almighty, it is more better for`Umar to listen to her." (Al-Isti'ab 4/1831).


© 2015 - 2016 All rights reserved Islam Message