'Umrat-ul Qadhaa' (The Compensatory ‘Umrah) - II
The Marriage of the Prophet to Maymoonah bint Al-Haarith, May Allah Be Pleased with Her
Maymoonah, a 26-year-old woman, was the sister of Umm Al-Fadhl, may Allah be pleased with her, the wife of Al-‘Abbaas bin Abdul-Muttalib, may Allah be pleased with him. After the death of her husband, Abu Ruhm bin Abd Al-‘Uzza, Maymoonah entrusted the affair of her marriage to her sister, Umm Al-Fadhl, who subsequently assigned it to her husband, Al-‘Abbaas. Al-‘Abbaas gave her in marriage to his nephew the Prophet and paid her on his behalf four hundred dirhams as a dowry. Maymoonah was the maternal aunt of ‘Abdullaah bin ‘Abbaas and Khaalid bin Al-Waleed, may Allah be pleased with them.
As soon as the three-day period cited in The Al-Hudaybiyah Peace Treaty elapsed, the Prophet wanted to use his marriage to Maymoonah to create better understanding between him and the influential men of Quraysh. A group of Quraysh designated Suhayl bin ‘Amr and Huwaytib bin ‘Abd Al- ‘Uzza to go to the Prophet and they said: “Your term has elapsed, so leave us.” According to Ibn Is’haaq the Prophet replied: “What would it harm you if you were to let me consummate my marriage here, and we invite you to the wedding banquet?” They told him that they did not want his banquet and wanted him to leave. The Prophet left and appointed his freedman, Abu Raafi‘, to look after Maymoonah until he brought her to him in Sarif where he consummated his marriage. Maymoonah was the last wife of the Prophet and the last one to die after him. She was buried in Sarif – the place of her wedding, may Allah be pleased with her.
The marriage of the Prophet to Maymoonah involved a Fiqh-related issue that jurists disputed over, namely, whether the Prophet concluded his marriage contract to Maymoonah while he was still in the state of Ihraam (ritual consecration) or after removing the state of Ihraam. Jurists have handled this issue in detail.
The Daughter of Hamzah, May Allah be Pleased with Her and Her Father, Joins the Muslim Procession
Islam transforms people’s heart and minds. Daughters, who were a source of shame for the Arab dignitaries and whom the tribes would bury alive as babies in order to get rid of their shame and because of their hatred for them, suddenly became loveable to each and every Muslim who wished to have a daughter to raise.
The Muslims were equal and none of them was given favor over another except due to a virtue or a right. When the Prophet wanted to leave Makkah, the daughter of Hamzah ran after them, calling, “O Uncle! O Uncle!” 'Ali, may Allah be pleased with him, received her and led her to Faatimah, may Allah be pleased with her, and said, “Here is your cousin.” ‘Ali, Zayd and Ja‘far argued, because each of them wanted to host her and look after her. ‘Ali said, “I am more entitled to her as she is my cousin.” Ja‘far said, “She is [also] my cousin, and her aunt is my wife.” Zayd said, “She is my niece.” The Prophet judged that she should be given to her aunt, and said: “A maternal aunt is just like a mother.” Then he said to ‘Ali: "You are from me, and I am from you,” and said to Ja‘far: “You resemble my character and looks,” and said to Zayd: “You are our brother [in Islam] and our freedman.” ‘Ali said to the Prophet “Why do you not marry the daughter of Hamzah?” The Prophet replied: “She is the daughter of my breastfed brother.”
This story provides us with some lessons and rulings:
1- A maternal aunt is just like a mother.
2- A maternal aunt is given precedence over anybody else to the right to custody when parents are not available.
3- The Prophet praised Ja‘far bin Abu Taalib, may Allah be pleased with him, by saying: “You resemble my character and looks”.
4- The virtue of ‘Ali, may Allah be pleased with him, as the Prophet told him: “You are from me, and I am from you,” which means that ‘Ali belonged to the Prophet as they were blood relatives as well as in-laws. ‘Ali was the first child to embrace Islam and they loved each other immensely.
5- The virtue of Zayd bin Haarithah, may Allah be pleased with him, as the Prophet said to him: “You are our brother [in faith] and our freedman.” He was a brother of Hamzah bin ‘Abd Al-Muttalib as the Prophet made them brothers in Madeenah. Zayd, may Allah be pleased with him. Understood that he had duties towards Hamzah exactly like the duties he had towards his blood brothers, and hence, he thought he had to be a guardian over Hamzah's daughter.
6- Maternal aunts are given precedence over paternal aunts to the right of child custody. The Prophet ruled that the wife of Ja‘far was more entitled to the custody of the daughter of Hamzah although her paternal aunt, Safiyyah bint ‘Abd Al-Muttalib, was still alive.
7- The marriage of a woman does not cause her to forfeit her right to the custody. The Prophet judged the custody to be given to the maternal aunt of Hamzah's daughter, even though the aunt was a wife of Ja‘far bin Abu Taalib, may Allah be pleased with him.
8- It is necessary that the husband first accepts the custody of a child to be granted to his wife, because wives are assigned to fulfill the needs and interests of their husbands. This custody may partially impede fulfilling these needs, so it is essential to seek his permission first. Also, we notice that Ja‘far bin Abu Taalib demanded the custody of the daughter of his paternal uncle Hamzah to be awarded to her maternal uncle, who was his wife. This indicated his agreement.
9- When a child suckles along with his uncle from the same woman, he becomes his breastfeeding brother, and all his daughters become daughters of his breastfeeding nieces and thus unlawful for him to marry.
'Umrat-ul Qadhaa' (The Compensatory ‘Umrah) - I