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Rebuttal to Sam Shamouns article
A Series of Answers to Common Questions
Wives are included on a list of property with farm animals and houses in the Bible's version of the Ten Commandments. Doesn't this prove that the Bible degrades women, placing them on the level of animals and possessions, showing that they are not equal to men?
In this article of his, Shamoun attempts to show that the Bible treats women fairly and equally, and grants them a good status and is not an anti-women religion. However so I will not be refuting or responding to Shamoun's showing of Bible verses that show respect and kindness to women. I for one do believe that there is good for women in the Bible, and there is some verses that do show women are regarded in a good position as Shamoun rightly pointed out to in his article. However, rather than just sticking to the topic, Shamoun went on to attack the position of women in Islam, and that is what I will be refuting in this rebuttal. Before getting started I will post some links that show the other side of the Bible towards women. Shamoun basically gave one picture, as any Christian would do. However for more regarding women in the Bible please consult these links:
Those links should do for now although there are many others. Now I shall post links that give a better understanding to the position of women in Islam, which I recommend the readers to visit:
Those shall be enough links and information to give the non-Muslim a better understanding of women in Islam. With that behind us we know move on to Shamouns attack against the status of women in Islam.
What about Islam and Women?
The above quoted and discussed accusation against the Bible seems to have been designed with the desire to counter a very real problem in the Quran, a book which degrades women and relegates them to the level of animals and property. When we turn to the Quran, this is what we find about women:
Your women are A TILLAGE; so come unto your tillage as you wish, and forward for your souls; and fear God, and know that you shall meet Him. Give thou good tidings to the believers. S. 2:223
Women are a field for men to enter and plow as they see fit.
Contrary to what Shamoun is trying to show, the verse does not mean to degrade or be bad to women. Let us go see what the early Muslims said about the verse, and what Ibn Kathir said about the verse and why it was revealed. Doing so the non-Muslim will get a better understanding of what the verse actually means. From tafsir Ibn Kathir which can be found at http://www.tafsir.com/default.asp?sid=2&tid=5921, now let us quote the tafsir:
<The Reason behind revealing Allah's Statement: "Your Wives are a Tilth for You.
Your wives are a tilth for you,)
Ibn `Abbas commented, "Meaning the place of pregnancy.'' [Allah then said:]
(...so go to your tilth, when or how you will,) meaning, wherever you wish from the front or from behind, as long as sex takes place in one valve (the female sexual organ), as the authentic Hadiths have indicated.
For instance, Al-Bukhari recorded that Ibn Al-Munkadir said that he heard Jabir say that the Jews used to claim that if one has sex with his wife from behind (in the vagina) the offspring would become cross-eyed. Then, this Ayah was revealed:
Your wives are a tilth for you, so go to your tilth, when or how you will,)
Muslim and Abu Dawud also reported this Hadith.
Ibn Abu Hatim said that Muhammad bin Al-Munkadir narrated that Jabir bin `Abdullah told him that the Jews claimed to the Muslims that if one has sex with their wife from behind (in the vagina) their offspring will become cross-eyed. Allah revealed afterwards:
(Your wives are a tilth for you, so go to your tilth, when or how you will,)
Ibn Jurayj (one of the reporters of the Hadith) said that Allah's Messenger said:
(From the front or from behind, as long as that occurs in the Farj (vagina).)
Imam Ahmad recorded that Ibn `Abbas said, "The Ayah,
(Your wives are a tilth for you) was revealed about some people from the Ansar who came to the Prophet and asked him (about having sex with the wife from behind). He said to them:
(Have sex with her as you like as long as that occurs in the vagina.)
Imam Ahmad recorded that `Abdullah bin Sabit said: I went to Hafsah bint `Abdur-Rahman bin Abu Bakr and said, "I wish to ask you about something, but I am shy.'' She said, "Do not be shy, O my nephew.'' He said, "About having sex from behind with women.'' She said, "Umm Salamah told me that the Ansar used to refrain from having sex from behind (in the vagina). The Jews claimed that those who have sex with their women from behind would have offspring with crossed-eyes. When the Muhajirun came to Al-Madinah, they married Ansar women and had sex with them from behind. One of these women would not obey her husband and said, `You will not do that until I go to Allah's Messenger (and ask him about this matter). ' She went to Umm Salamah and told her the story. Umm Salamah said, `Wait until Allah's Messenger comes.' When Allah's Messenger came, the Ansari woman was shy to ask him about this matter, so she left. Umm Salamah told Allah's Messenger the story and he said:
(Summon the Ansari woman.)''
She was summoned and he recited this Ayah to her:
(Your wives are a tilth for you, so go to your tilth, when or how you will.) He added:
(Only in one valve (the vagina).)''
This Hadith was also collected by At-Tirmidhi who said, "Hasan.''
An-Nasa'i reported that Ka`b bin `Alqamah said that Abu An-Nadr said that he asked Nafi`, "The people are repeating the statement that you relate from Ibn `Umar that he allowed sex with women in their rear (anus).'' He said, "They have said a lie about me. But let me tell you what really happened. Ibn `Umar was once reciting the Qur'an while I was with him and he reached the Ayah:
(Your wives are a tilth for you, so go to your tilth, when or how you will,) He then said, `O Nafi`! Do you know the story behind this Ayah' I said, `No.' He said, `We, the people of Quraysh, used to have sexual intercourse with our wives from the back (in the vagina). When we migrated to Al-Madinah and married some Ansari women, we wanted to do the same with them. They disliked it and made a big issue out of it. The Ansari women had followed the practice of the Jews who have sex with their women while they lay on their sides. Then, Allah revealed:
(Your wives are a tilth for you, so go to your tilth, when or how you will,)''
This has an authentic chain of narrators.
Imam Ahmad reported that Khuzaymah bin Thabit Al-Khatami narrated that Allah's Messenger said:
(Allah does not shy from the truth - he said it thrice-, do not have anal sex with women.)
This Hadith was collected by An-Nasa'i and Ibn Majah.
Abu `Isa At-Tirmidhi and An-Nasa'i reported that Ibn `Abbas narrated that Allah's Messenger said:
(Allah does not look at a man who had anal sex with another man or a woman.)
At-Tirmidhi said, "Hasan Gharib.'' This is also the narration that Ibn Hibban collected in his Sahih, while Ibn Hazm stated that this is an authentic Hadith.
In addition, Imam Ahmad reported that `Ali bin Talaq said, "Allah's Messenger forbade anal sex with women, for Allah does not shy away from truth.'' Abu `Isa At-Tirmidhi also reported this Hadith and said, "Hasan''.
Abu Muhammad `Abdullah bin `Abdur-Rahman Darimi reported in his Musnad that Sa`id bin Yasar Abu Hubab said: I said to Ibn `Umar, "What do you say about having sex with women in the rear'' He said, "What does it mean'' I said, "Anal sex.'' He said, "Does a Muslim do that'' This Hadith has an authentic chain of narrators and is an explicit rejection of anal sex from Ibn `Umar.
Abu Bakr bin Ziyad Naysaburi reported that Isma`il bin Ruh said that he asked Malik bin Anas, "What do you say about having sex with women in the anus'' He said, "You are not an Arab Does sex occur but in the place of pregnancy Do it only in the Farj (vagina).'' I said, "O Abu `Abdullah! They say that you allow that practice.'' He said, "They utter a lie about me, they lie about me.'' This is Malik's firm stance on this subject. It is also the view of Sa`id bin Musayyib, Abu Salamah, `Ikrimah, Tawus, `Ata , Sa`id bin Jubayr, `Urwah bin Az-Zubayr, Mujahid bin Jabr, Al-Hasan and other scholars of the Salaf (the Companions and the following two generations after them). They all, along with the majority of the scholars, harshly rebuked the practice of anal sex and many of them called this practice a Kufr.
(. ..and send for your own selves beforehand.) meaning, by performing the acts of worship while refraining from whatever Allah has prohibited for you. This is why Allah said afterwards:
(And fear Allah, and know that you are to meet Him (in the Hereafter),)
meaning, He will hold you accountable for all of your deeds,
(...and give good tidings to the believers (O Muhammad ).) meaning, those who obey what Allah has commanded and refrain from what He has prohibited. Ibn Jarir reported that `Ata' said, or related it to Ibn `Abbas,
(...and send for your own selves beforehand.) means, mention Allah's Name, by saying, `Bismillah', before having sexual intercourse.'' Al-Bukhari also reported that Ibn `Abbas narrated that Allah's Messenger said:
(If anyone of you on having sexual relations with his wife said: `In the Name of Allah. O Allah! Protect us from Satan and also protect what you bestow upon us (i.e., the coming offspring) from Satan,' and if it is destined that they should have a child then, Satan will never be able to harm him.)
(224. And make not Allah's (Name) an excuse in your oaths against doing good and acting piously, and making peace among mankind. And Allah is All-Hearer, All-Knower (i.e., do not swear much and if you have sworn against doing something good then give an expiation for the oath and do good).) (225. Allah will not call you to account for that which is unintentional in your oaths, but He will call you to account for that which your hearts have earned. And Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most-Forbearing.)
So now reading the tafsir, the verse become quite clear and is far from being meant as an insult to women. The verse was simply to get rid of a lie or an invention made up by the Jews that if you have sex with your wife from the back that you will get a cross-eyed baby, so God revealed the verse to break that lie and to let the Muslim husbands know that they can go onto their wives any way they see fit as long as its not anal sex of course. As we also see the early Muslim women did not take it as an offense either, so once having seen what the early Muslims believed and why the verse was revealed it becomes clear the verse is in no way a degradation of women but giving comfort to the married couples.
Divorced women shall wait by themselves for three periods; and it is not lawful for them to hide what God has created in their wombs; if they believe in God and the Last Day. In such time their mates have better right to restore them, if they desire to set things right. Women have such honourable rights as obligations, but their men HAVE A DEGREE ABOVE THEM; God is All-mighty, All-wise. S. 2:228
Ibn Kathir commented here:
<But men have a degree over them.>, that is, men have a degree over women as far as virtue, behaviour, status, obeying orders, expenditure, fulfilling duties, and grace in both worldly life and the Hereafter... (Tafsir Ibn Kathir, part 2, Sura Al-Baqarah, ayat 142-252, Abridged By Sheikh Muhammad Nasib Ar-Rifa'i [Al-Firdous Ltd., London 1998], p. 204; bold emphasis ours
First of I would like to expose Shamoun because he basically shot himself in the foot. One must ask Shamoun why he did not post what Ibn Kathir had to say about the earlier verse? Why post what Ibn kathir has to say to this verse? The reason is obvious, Shamoun is a deceiver. When a tafsir hurts and crushes his argument, he will not use it as in the case of the previous verse. So basically Shamoun just shows half the story, and invents something up without showing what the scholars have to say, but when he feels it helps his cause he shows what they have to say. That in itself speaks about Shamoun's character. So not only has he exposed himself as a deceiver and picking and choosing what to post, he has invented up lies on the Quran about degrading women as in the previous verse about women being called a tilth.
Now to the verse, there is nothing wrong with it at all, if one uses his uses his common sense, then it would make perfect sense when the verse says men have a degree over women. It is a fact that men do indeed have a degree over women such us providing for the entire family, making the rules and many other things. The husband is the boss of the house, this is not a bad thing to women but this is how it is, and in almost every culture out there the husband is the man of the house and makes the rules, and these cultures happen to be western cultures. That is how it is, and most women dont mind that their husband is the boss of the house. Even the bible commands this (Colossians, 3:18). However, Shamoun fails to understand that and is just trying to use any lame argument against Islam, and I must say that is the worst one I have seen.
The Quran even permits a man to beat his wife if he fears any rebellion on her part:
Men are the managers of the affairs of women for that God has preferred in bounty one of them over another, and for that they have expended of their property. Righteous women are therefore obedient, guarding the secret for God's guarding. And those you fear may be rebellious admonish; banish them to their couches, and beat them. If they then obey you, look not for any way against them; God is All-high, All-great. S. 4:34
The Islamic traditions add:
Abdullah ibn AbuDhubab:
Iyas ibn Abdullah ibn AbuDhubab reported the Apostle of Allah (peace_be_upon_him) as saying: Do not beat Allah's handmaidens, but when Umar came to the Apostle of Allah (peace_be_upon_him) and said: Women have become emboldened towards their husbands, he (the Prophet) gave permission to beat them. Then many women came round the family of the Apostle of Allah (peace_be_upon_him) complaining against their husbands. So the Apostle of Allah (peace_be_upon_him) said: Many women have gone round Muhammad's family complaining against their husbands. They are not the best among you. (Sunan Abu Dawud, Book 11, Number 2141 <http://www.usc.edu/dept/MSA/fundamentals/hadithsunnah/abudawud/011.sat.html>)
Umar ibn al-Khattab:
The Prophet (peace_be_upon_him) said: A man will not be asked as to why he beat his wife. (Sunan Abu Dawud, Book 11, Number 2142 <http://www.usc.edu/dept/MSA/fundamentals/hadithsunnah/abudawud/011.sat.html>)
Muhammad Asad, in his footnote to this passage, #45, wrote:
It is evident from many authentic Traditions that the Prophet himself intensely detested the idea of beating one's wife, and said on more than one occasion, "Could any of you beat his wife as he would beat a slave, and then lie with her in the evening?" (Bukhari and Muslim). According to another Tradition, he forbade the beating of any woman with the words, "Never beat God's handmaidens" (Abu Da'ud, Nasa'i, Ibn Majah, Ahmad ibn Hanbal, Ibn Hibban and Hakim, on the authority of Iyas ibn 'Abd Allah; Ibn Hibban, on the authority of 'Abd Allah ibn 'Abbas; and Bayhaqi, on the authority of Umm Kulthum). When the above Qur'an-verse authorizing the beating of a refractory wife was revealed, the Prophet is reported to have said: "I wanted one thing, but God has willed another thing - and what God has willed must be best" (see Manar V, 74). With all this, he stipulated in his sermon on the occasion of the Farewell Pilgrimage, shortly before his death, that beating should be resorted to only if the wife "has become guilty, in an obvious manner, of immoral conduct", and that it should be done "in such a way as not to cause pain (ghayr mubarrih)"; authentic Traditions to this effect are found in Muslim, Tirmidhi, Abu Da'ud, Nasa'i and Ibn Majah. On the basis of these Traditions, all the authorities stress that this "beating", if resorted to at all, should be more or less symbolic - "with a toothbrush, or some such thing" (Tabari, quoting the views of scholars of the earliest times), or even "with a folded handkerchief" (Razi); and some of the greatest Muslim scholars (e.g., Ash-Shafi'i) are of the opinion that it is just barely permissible, and should preferably be avoided: and they justify this opinion by the Prophet's personal feelings with regard to this problem. (Source <http://www.geocities.com/masad02/004>; bold and underline emphasis ours)
It is obvious that the explanations of the Muslim scholars on how to carry out this beating are not supported by the text itself, and exposes the great difficulty they had with Allah's injunction to beat women whom they feared were being rebellious. It is also interesting that Muhammad showed more care and refrain than Allah himself, since the former didn't want women to be beaten whereas the latter did!
Shamoun causes more damage to himself in this other attack. Shamoun posts the verse about beating, he then cites what scholars have to say about it, which is that when the Quran says beat it means very lightly and so on, since Shamoun doesnt like what they have to say he completely disregards everything they say and says that it doesnt support the text, amusing! Shamoun has not only now put it upon himself to be a scholar of Islam, he is throwing out all the opinions and works of other true MUSLIM scholars who know and studied the Quran twenty times more than Shamoun did. So Shamoun proves himself as a further deceiver by trying to disregard the scholars main standpoint on the verse on beating, so basically we see Shamoun picks and chooses which works of scholars to show and agree with, and which not to. When the scholars seem to help his cause he jumps and says look what they say! When they hurt his argument he says but wait their views dont reflect the text of the Quran! Very funny that Shamoun has become a professional in what the text of the Quran says and doesn't say when in fact he is the one who has continually mis-interpreted what the Quran has said. This tactic by Shamoun will not work.
However so, the text does in fact support the scholars, if Shamoun did not take just one verse, and actually took ALL verses together and looked at the context of how your wives and women should be treated, then he would have a better of understanding of the verse. I will help Shamoun out by quoting another verse in the Quran, which shall give a better perspective:
"O ye who believe! Ye are forbidden to inherit women against their will. Nor should ye treat them with harshness, that ye may take away part of the dower [money given by the husband to the wife for the marriage contract] ye have given them, except where they have been guilty of open lewdness; on the contrary live with them on a footing of kindness and equity. If ye take a dislike to them it may be that ye dislike a thing, and God brings about through it a great deal of good. (The Noble Quran, 4:19)"
As we see from that verse, the Quran forbids you to treat your wife with harshness, meaning dont treat her badly and cause her pain. So once you get the other verse on being permitted to beat, and put it with this verse, you then get the BIG PICTURE. So in fact the text of the Quran does support the scholars opinions as you just took one verse and not the entire CONTEXT of the treatment of women in Islam. Had you taken the entire context of the Quran on the treatment of your wives and women you would not make such a silly comment, but that is something most Islamic critics do.
So basically Shamoun shot himself in the foot by proving he is a deceiver and wrongly attacked the scholars by saying their stand point is not in agreement with the text, when in fact you look at the entire context, it is. Yes God willed for it, Muhammad would prefer of no such thing because the verse could still be mis-treated by some husbands who would just use the verse in a wrong way as an excuse to hit their wives continuously and to hit them very hard to cause them pain, however so Allah knows best. One last point is that permission to LIGHTLY beat your wife is as a LAST option after you have tried everything.
Here are the comments of two other scholars regarding 4:34:
Al-Baghawi said in his Tafseer (2/206): " 'because Allaah has made one of them to excel the other' means, men excel women BECAUSE THEY HAVE MORE POWERS OF REASON and religious commitment and they are in charge of affairs. And it was said that this refers to giving testimony, because Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): 'And if there are not two men (available), then a man and two women' [al-Baqarah 2:282]. And it was said that it refers to jihad, or to worship i.e., Jumu'ah and prayers in congregation, or that it refers to the fact that a man may marry four wives, but a woman is not permitted more than one husband; or the fact that divorce is in the man's hand; or that it refers to inheritance, or to diyah (blood money), or to Prophethood."
Al-Baydaawi said in his Tafseer (2/184): " 'Men are the protectors and maintainers of women' means that they are in charge of them and take care of them. He gave two reasons for that, one that is INHERENT IN THEM and one that is acquired subsequently, and said: 'because Allaah has made one of them to excel the other', because Allaah has favoured men over women by making men MORE PERFECT IN REASONING and running affairs, and has given them more strength with regard to work and acts of worship. Hence men are singled out when it comes to Prophethood, leadership, guardianship, establishing rituals, giving testimony in legal matters, the obligation to engage in jihad and pray Jumu'ah, and so on, and they are given a greater share of inheritance, and divorce is in the man's hand. 'and because they spend (to support them) from their means' refers to what they spend with regard to marriage, such as the mahr and maintenance, etc." ...
(Question #43252: The reason why the husband is regarded as superior and is given the role of qawwaam (protector and maintainer) <http://188.8.131.52/index.php?ln=eng&ds=qa&lv=browse&QR=43252&dgn=4>; underline and capital emphasis ours)
I will give an answer to why men are more perfect in reasoning and running affairs below as it also deals with another of Shamoun's argument. However I will now deal with the underlined point of Shamoun, which is that divorce is in the man's hand. However before doing so, it must be noted that Shamoun now uses what some other scholars have to say because it seems to help his cause. Shamoun is basically playing around with scholars and picking and choosing what to show.
Now to women and divorce. In Islam women indeed CAN GET a divorce, if they want a divorce they can get one, here is the proof:
Narrated Abdullah ibn Abbas: "A virgin came to the Prophet (peace_be_upon_him) and mentioned that her father had married her against her will, so the Prophet (peace_be_upon_him) allowed her to exercise her choice. (Translation of Sunan Abu-Dawud, Marriage (Kitab Al-Nikah), Book 11, Number 2091)"
Volume 7, Book 63, Number 197:
Narrated Ibn 'Abbas:
The wife of Thabit bin Qais came to the Prophet and said, "O Allah's Apostle! I do not blame Thabit for defects in his character or his religion, but I, being a Muslim, dislike to behave in un-Islamic manner (if I remain with him)." On that Allah's Apostle said (to her), "Will you give back the garden which your husband has given you (as Mahr)?" She said, "Yes." Then the Prophet said to Thabit, "O Thabit! Accept your garden, and divorce her once."
Volume 7, Book 63, Number 198:
The sister of 'Abdullah bin Ubai narrated (the above narration, 197) with the addition that the Prophet said to Thabit's wife, "Will you return his garden?" She said, "Yes," and returned it, and (then) the Prophet ordered Thabit to divorce her. Narrated Ibn 'Abbas: The wife of Thabit bin Qais came to Allah's Apostle and said, "O Allah's Apostle! I do not blame Thabit for any defects in his character or his religion, but I cannot endure to live with him." On that Allah's Apostle said, "Will you return his garden to him?" She said, "Yes."
So yes women in Islam can get a divorce if they want one.
The next passage puts women on a list of things and persons that men own, love and lust after:
Decked out fair to men is the love of lusts -- WOMEN, children, heaped-up heaps of gold and silver, horses of mark, cattle and tillage. That is the enjoyment of the present life; but God -- with Him is the fairest resort. S. 3:14
Here, again, are Ibn Kathir's comments:
Allah mentions the delights that He put in this life for people, such as women and children, and He started with women, because the test with them IS MORE TEMPTING. For instance, the Sahih recorded that the Messenger said,
<I did not leave behind me a test more tempting THAN WOMEN.>
When one enjoys women for the purpose of having children and preserving his chastity, then he is encouraged getting married, such as,
<Verily, the best members of this Ummah are those who have THE MOST WIVES> He also said, <This life is a delight, and the best of its delight IS A RIGHTEOUS WIFE>
The verse he posted in no way at all degrades women but shows how ignorant Shamoun is. The fact is the verse is basically saying what men in this world love, which are WOMEN and children and fortunes such as gold and silver, and other things such as cattle and land. This is a fact! This is not a degradation of women but Shamoun is too stubborn to see that because he would do anything to attack Islam. He is losing arguments and is coming up with whatever he can find now which is becoming pathetic. It is also true that women are very tempting! Thats why in Islam they are told to wear hijab! Unlike in Christian societies where you see half naked women and where the adultery rate is sky-high. Indeed the best of this life is to have a righteous wife, what is wrong with that? Or would Shamoun prefer an unrighteous wife who sleeps around with other men and doesnt take care of the family. Shamoun misses out the most important point:
When one enjoys women for the purpose of having children and preserving his chastity, then he is encouraged getting married, such as,
That should also blow his pathetic argument away, the reason you get married is to make sure you dont commit adultery! And to have kids as well.
The Prophet said in another Hadith,
<I WAS MADE TO LIKE WOMEN AND PERFUME. And the comfort of my eye is the prayer.> 'Aisha, may Allah be pleased with her, said, "Nothing was more beloved to the Messenger of Allah THAN WOMEN, except horses," and in another narration, " than horses EXCEPT WOMEN." (Source <http://tafsir.com/default.asp?sid=3&tid=7855>)
It is good Shamoun posts the link to the tafsir, because as I will show, the part he quotes is taken out of context and is not in light of what is meant, let us quote the entire tafsir:
<The True Value of This Earthly Life
Allah mentions the delights that He put in this life for people, such as women and children, and He started with women, because the test with them is more tempting. For instance, the Sahih recorded that the Messenger said,
I did not leave behind me a test more tempting to men than women.)
When one enjoys women for the purpose of having children and preserving his chastity, then he is encouraged to do so. There are many Hadiths that encourage getting married, such as,
(Verily, the best members of this Ummah are those who have the most wives) He also said,
This life is a delight, and the best of its delight is a righteous wife)
The Prophet said in another Hadith
I was made to like women and perfume, and the comfort of my eye is the prayer.)
`A'ishah, may Allah be pleased with her, said, "Nothing was more beloved to the Messenger of Allah than women, except horses,'' and in another narration, "...than horses except women.''
The desire to have children is sometimes for the purpose of pride and boasting, and as such, is a temptation. When the purpose for having children is to reproduce and increase the Ummah of Muhammad with those who worship Allah alone without partners, then it is encouraged and praised. A Hadith states,
The rest of the tafsir is on horses. However so once quoting the entire context we clearly see why Muhammad was made to like women, notice it says MADE. As we clearly see the reason to why he liked this was to reproduce and have children to increase the Muslim nation. It was not for a plain perverted sexual desire as Shamoun tries to play out, but it was to have kids to increase the Muslim population. More deceiving by Shamoun and taking things out of context ONCE AGAIN.
According to the Quran, a man is equal to two women in matters of evidence and inheritance:
O believers, when you contract a debt one upon another for a stated term, write it down, and let a writer write it down between you justly, and let not any writer refuse to write it down, as God has taught him; so let him write, and let the debtor dictate, and let him fear God his Lord and not diminish aught of it. And if the debtor be a fool, or weak, or unable to dictate himself, then let his guardian dictate justly. And call in to witness two witnesses, men; or if the two be not men, then one man and two women, such witnesses as you approve of, that if one of the two women errs the other will remind her; and let the witnesses not refuse, whenever they are summoned. And be not loth to write it down, whether it be small or great, with its term; that is more equitable in God's sight, more upright for testimony, and likelier that you will not be in doubt. Unless it be merchandise present that you give and take between you; then it shall be no fault in you if you do not write ¶ it down. And take witnesses when you are trafficking one with another. And let not either writer or witness be pressed; or if you do, that is ungodliness in you. And fear God; God teaches you, and God has knowledge of everything. S. 2:282
Here is what Ibn Kathir said regarding this verse:
<And if there are not two men (available), then a man and two women>
this requirement is only for contracts that directly or indirectly involve money. Allah requires that two women take the place of one man as witness, because of the woman's shortcomings, as the Prophet described. Muslim recorded in his Sahih that Abu Hurayrah said that the Messenger of Allah said, ...
<O women! Give away charity and ask for forgiveness, for I saw that you comprise the majority of the people of the Fire.>
One eloquent woman said, "O Messenger of Allah! Why do we comprise the majority of the people of the Fire'' He said, ...
<You curse a lot and you do not appreciate your mate. I have never seen those who have shortcoming in mind and religion controlling those who have sound minds, other than you.>
She said, "O Messenger of Allah! What is this shortcoming in mind and religion?'' He said, ...
<As for the shortcoming in her mind, the testimony of two women equals the testimony of one man, and this is the shortcoming in the mind. As for the shortcoming in the religion, woman remains for nights at a time when she does not pray and breaks the fast in Ramadan>. (Source <http://tafsir.com/default.asp?sid=2&tid=7432>)
Another Quranic command:
God charges you, concerning your children: to the male the like of the portion of two females, and if they be women above two, then for them two-thirds of what he leaves, but if she be one then to her a half; and to his parents to each one of the two the sixth of what he leaves, if he has children; but if he has no children, and his heirs are his parents, a third to his mother, or, if he has brothers, to his mother a sixth, after any bequest he may bequeath, or any debt. Your fathers and your sons -- you know not which out of them is nearer in profit to you. So God apportions; surely God is All-knowing, All-wise. S. 4:11
In relation to this passage, Ar-Razi wrote:
"(The males share is that of two females). Man is more perfect than the woman IN CREATION, AND INTELLIGENCE, and in the religious sphere, such as the suitability to be a judge, and a leader in worship. Also, the testimony of the man is twice that of the woman. So that whoever is given great responsibilities must be given correspondingly great privileges. As the woman is deficient in intelligence and of great lust, if she is given much money, much corruption will be the result."
This response will also include a response to why men are more better in running affairs and so on, for the response please visit:
There will be no reason for me to respond as the answer is in that link, and not much more can be added to it, however so it clears up the mis-conception.
However I will give a short easy simple response to why the male portion is double than the female. The answer is very simple and it does not take a genius to figure it out. A male is the one who has to take of the family! Especially when the parents pass away he must make sure he is able to provide for his brothers and sisters and mother to take care of them. Especially back then the male had to mostly do everything. So the male portion is double because he has to provide and take care of the family in his father's place for a time being, and then provide for his own kids and wife which is obviously a very hard thing to do, to provide for both, so hence the male is given double. The female does not have to concern herself much in paying and buying and spending money or using land or whatever is given. Her basic duty is to take care of the family and make sure the kids are brought up in a righteous manner.
"The male is mentioned first in Q. 4:11 because the male is better than the female." (At-tafsir al-kabir, commentary on 4:11; bold and capital emphasis ours)
Bring me the Quranic verse where males are better than the female. And better in what sense?
Ar-Razi also said:
"His saying 'created for you' is a proof that women were created like animals and plants and other useful things, just as the Most High has said 'He created for you what is on earth' and that necessitates the woman not to be created for worship and carrying the Divine commands. We say creating the women is one of the graces bestowed upon us and charging them with Divine commands to complete the graces bestowed upon us, not that they are charged as we men are charged. For women are not charged with many commands as we are charged, because the woman is weak, silly, in one sense she is like a child, and no commands are laid upon a child, but for the grace of Allah upon us to be complete, women had to be charged so that they may fear the torment of punishment and so follow her husband, and keep away from what is forbidden, otherwise corruption would be rampant." (Ibid., commentary on surah 30:21; bold emphasis ours)
The hadiths agree with ar-Razi:
Abu Said Al-Khudri:
Once Allah's Apostle went out to the Musalla (to offer the prayer) on 'Id-al-Adha or Al-Fitr prayer. Then he passed by the women and said, "O women! Give alms, as I have seen that the majority of the dwellers of Hell-fire were you (women)." They asked, "Why is it so, O Allah's Apostle?" He replied, "You curse frequently and are ungrateful to your husbands. I have not seen anyone more deficient in intelligence and religion than you. A cautious sensible man could be led astray by some of you." The women asked, "O Allah's Apostle! What is deficient in our intelligence and religion?" He said, "Is not the evidence of two women equal to the witness of one man?" They replied in the affirmative. He said, "This is the deficiency in her intelligence. Isn't it true that a woman can neither pray nor fast during her menses?" The women replied in the affirmative. He said, "This is the deficiency in her religion." (Sahih al-Bukhari, Volume 1, Book 6, Number 301 <http://www.usc.edu/dept/MSA/fundamentals/hadithsunnah/bukhari/006.sbt.html>; see also Volume 2, Book 24, Number 541)
Abu Huraira reported: THE MESSENGER OF ALLAH (may peace be upon him) SAID: A WOMAN, AN ASS AND A DOG DISRUPT THE PRAYER, but something like the back of a saddle guards against that. (Sahih Muslim, Book 004, Number 1034 <http://www.usc.edu/dept/MSA/fundamentals/hadithsunnah/muslim/004.smt.html>)
Very funny that Shamoun cant stop quoting what scholars have to say now, he is just keeps on exposing himself more and more. As to what ar-razi said about women causing corruption and being childish and all this, I would like Quranic references to back his claim up, and his claim of women be created for us does not do so. So please the TEXT of the Quran to support his theory, which you have not done so. However, earlier you claim we cannot agree with that scholars saying on wife beating because it is not supported by text yet you post what ar-razi says without showing the text to support it! Indeed Shamoun you have very low character but I would not expect much from a missionary such as yourself. As to why women will disrupt the prayer, this is very easy to answer. Women may disrupt the prayer because as a man you always get some what tempted by a women and look at her, this will cause you to lose concentration on praying and so on. It is not meant to be offensive to women. As for the majority of hell will be women, Muhammad was just merely saying what he saw and its reason. If the ratio of women to men here on planet earth is larger, then it is only logical that the ratio of women to men in hell would also be larger.
Go to this site and check out the ratio of women to men in every country. You will see that most of them are larger. http://www.cia.gov/cia/publications/factbook/
The Prophet is simply stating the crime of most of the women in hell.
Ibn Ishaq, the author of the earliest biography of Muhammad, wrote:
'Abdullah b. Abu Bakr told me that he was told that when the apostle sent Mua'dh he gave him instructions and orders and then said: Deal gently and not harshly; announce good news and do not repel people. You are going to one of the people with scripture who will ask you about the key of heaven. Say to them it is the witness that there is no God but Allah, Who has no partner. Mua'dh went off to Yaman and did as he was ordered and a woman came to him and said, 'O companion of God's apostle, what rights has a husband over his wife?' He said, 'Woe to you, a woman can NEVER fulfil her husband's rights, so do your utmost to fulfil his claims as best as you can.' She said, 'By God, if you are the companion of God's apostle you must know what rights a husband has over his wife!' He said, 'If you were to go back and find him with his nostrils running with pus and blood and sucked until you got rid of them you would not have fulfilled your obligation.' (Alfred Guillaume, The Life of Muhammad [Oxford University Press, Karachi, Tenth Impression 1995], p. 644; capital and underline emphasis ours)
You have rights over your wives and they have rights over you. You have the right that they should not defile your bed and that they should not behave with open unseemliness. If they do, God allows you to put them in separate rooms AND BEAT THEM but not with severity. If they refrain from these things they have the right to their food and clothing with kindness. Lay injunctions on women kindly, FOR THEY ARE PRISONERS WITH YOU HAVING NO CONTROL OF THEIR PERSONS. You have taken them as a trust from God, and you have the enjoyment of their persons by the words of God, so understand... (Ibid., p. 651; capital emphasis ours)
I have already responded to the wife beating. As for women not being able and never being able to fulfill their husbands rights this is not an insult, this is just fact and human nature, no body is perfect.
In responding to a question whether men and women are equal in Islam, the following Salafi site unashamedly quotes Ibn Kathir on Q. 2:282 and states:
Ibn Katheer said:
Two women are to take the place of one man because women are lacking in reason, as Muslim narrated in his Saheeh from Abu Hurayrah that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: "O women, give in charity and seek forgiveness a great deal, for I have seen that you form the majority of the people of Hell." A wise woman among them said, "Why is it, O Messenger of Allaah, that we are the majority of the people of Hell?" He said, "Because you curse too much, and you are ungrateful to your spouses. I have seen none lacking in common sense and failing in religion but (at the same time) robbing the wisdom of the wise, besides you." The woman asked: "O Messenger of Allaah, what is wrong with our common sense and our religion?" He said: "Your lack of common sense (can be well judged from the fact) that the evidence of two women is equal to that of one man, that is a proof of the lack of common sense, and you spend some nights (and days) in which you do not offer prayer and in the month of Ramadan (during the days) you do not observe fast, that is a failing in religion."
This has already been responded to.
Tafseer Ibn Katheer, 1/336)
There may be some women who are wiser than some men, but this is not the usual rule and such women are not in the majority. Sharee'ah is based on what is general and most common...
The fact that women are lacking in reason does not mean that they are crazy, rather their reason is often overtaken by their emotions, and this happens to women more often than it happens to men. No one would deny this except one who is arrogant.
Yes that is true; women ARE TAKEN OVER BY THEIR EMOTIONS. And it does happen to them more than men this is a fact! Notice what he quotes:
The fact that women are lacking in reason does not mean that they are crazy
So the bottom line is that it is not meant to be an insult since he also states this does not mean women are crazy i.e. being stupid or dumb.
The same article also cites Ibn Kathir in connection with 4:34:
Ibn Katheer (may Allaah have mercy on him) said:
"Allaah says 'Men are the protectors and maintainers of women' meaning that the man is in charge of the woman, i.e., he is the leader and head of the household, the one who disciplines her if she goes astray.
'because Allaah has made one of them to excel the other' i.e., because men are superior to women and are better than women. Hence Prophethood was given only to men, as was the position of khaleefah, because the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said, 'No people shall ever prosper who appoint a woman as their ruler.' This was narrated by al-Bukhaari from the hadeeth of 'Abd al-Rahmaan ibn Abi Bakrah from his father. The same applies to the position of qaadi (judge), etc.
'and because they spend (to support them) from their means' refers to the mahr and the spending on women's maintenance that Allaah has enjoined upon men in His Book and in the Sunnah of His Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him). SO A MAN IS INHERENTLY BETTER THAN A WOMAN, and he is superior to her because he spends on her. So it is appropriate that he should be in charge of her, as Allaah says, 'but men have a degree (of responsibility) over them' [al-Baqarah 2:228].
'Ali ibn Abi Talhah said, narrating from Ibn 'Abbaas: 'Men are the protectors and maintainers of women' means that men are the leaders of women and they should obey them in areas where Allaah has enjoined obedience. Obedience may mean treating his family kindly and protecting his wealth."
None of what he quoted is degradation of women but common fact, which is practiced all over the world in every culture including Christianity. The man is the boss and leader of the house. Every wife will agree with this and has no problems with it as long as he doesnt over step his boundaries. However Shamoun is becoming more and more desperate with his lame arguments, he is making arguments out of nothing.
Tafseer Ibn Katheer, 1/490)
They go on to write:
There are other differences between the sexes, including the following:
· A man can marry four women, but a woman can only have one husband.
· A man has the right to issue a divorce and it is valid if he does so, but a woman does not have the right to issue a divorce.
· A man may marry a woman from among the People of the Book (Jews and Christians), but a Muslim woman may not marry anyone but a Muslim.
· A man may travel without his wife or any of his mahrams, but a woman may not travel unless she is accompanied by a mahram.
· Prayer in the mosque is obligatory for men, but not for women; a woman's prayer in her house is more beloved to Allaah.
· A woman may wear silk and gold, but a man must not wear them.
I have shown that the women have asked and wanted a divorce and have gotten it, so that has been refuted already. As for women being accompanied when they travel, this is to protect them and so on so they dont get raped or attacked as they do in most societies. As for the womens prayer there is nothing degrading in that.
Everything that we have mentioned is based on the difference between men and women, because the male is not like the female. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):
"And the male is not like the female"
[Aal 'Imraan 3:36] ...
And men are different in intellectual terms, for men are known for their strength of understanding and their memory as compared to women. Women are weaker than men in memory and forget more than men do. This is well known, for most of the reputable scholars in the world are men. There are some women who are more intelligent and have better memories than some men, but this does not cancel out the general rule. Most cases are as we have described above...
Muhammed Salih Al-Munajjid (www.islam-qa.com)
(Question #1105: Does Islam regard men and women as equal? <http://184.108.40.206/index.php?ln=eng&ds=qa&lv=browse&QR=1105&dgn=4>; bold, capital and underline emphasis ours)
Already been responded to with reasons. http://www.answering-christianity.com/two_women.htm
Elsewhere on the site it says:
Allaah has commanded the testimony of two women so as to be sure that they remember, because the mind and memory of two women takes the place of the mind and memory of one man. (See I'laam al-Muwaqqa'een, part 1, p. 75).
This does not mean that a woman does not understand or that she cannot remember things, but she is weaker than man in these aspects - usually. Scientific and specialized studies have shown that men's minds ARE MORE PERFECT THAN THOSE OF WOMEN, and reality and experience bear witness to that. The books of knowledge are the best witness to that; the knowledge which has been transmitted by men and the ahaadeeth which have been memorized by men far outnumber those which have come via women.
This has to do with gender, i.e., the gender of men IS MORE PERFECT than the gender of women...
Nevertheless, there are some women who are far superior to men in their reason and insight, but they are few, and the ruling is based on the majority and the usual cases...
Muhammed Salih Al-Munajjid (www.islam-qa.com)
(Question #20051: Why is the witness of one man considered to be equal to the witness of two women? <http://220.127.116.11/index.php?ln=eng&ds=qa&lv=browse&QR=20051&dgn=4>; bold, underline and capital emphasis ours)
Regarding the reason why Islam prohibits women leaders, this same site states:
This is because positions of leadership and government require a person to join men's gatherings, which is not allowed for women according to sharee'ah because of the aayah (interpretation of the meaning): "And stay in your houses, and do not display yourselves like that of the times of ignorance." [al-Ahzaab 33:33]. These positions also require perfect wisdom, reason and alertness, and the testimony of a man has been made equal to that of two women, the reason for which Allaah has explained in the aayah (interpretation of the meaning): ". so that if one of them (two women) errs, the other can remind her." [al-Baqarah 2:282].
This has been responded to already: http://www.answering-christianity.com/two_women.htm
According to your own book a female is unclean for 2 weeks if she has a female child and one week for a male child, so it is your book which agrees that male are more better than females. As the male gender being more perfect, if Shamoun opened up his eyes and thought about it and in what context it was meant, he wouldnt raise this argument. Men are more perfect in the context that we dont have periods, we are the stronger sex, we have less emotions than women etc. Shamoun must also not forget his book teaches women giving birth is a punishment for them too.
Imaam al-Muwaffaq Ibn Qudaamah said:
"For this reason the Prophet SAWS (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) and his successors (khulafa') and those who came after them never appointed a woman to be a judge or a governor of a province, as far as we know. If it were permissible, it should have happened."
Imaam al-Ghazaali said:
"The position of leader (imaam) could never be given to a woman even if she possessed all the qualities of perfection and self-reliance. How could a woman take the position of leader when she did not have the right to be a judge or a witness under most of the historical governments?"
Imaam al-Baghawi said:
"The scholars agreed that women are not fit to be leaders or judges, because the leader needs to go out to organize jihaad and take care of the Muslims' affairs, and the judge needs to go out to judge between people, but women are 'awrah and it is not right for them to go out. Because of their weakness, women are not able to do many things. Women are imperfect, and the positions of leaders and judge are among the most perfect of positions for which only the most perfect of men are qualified."
(Question #3285: Ruling on appointing women to positions of high public office <http://18.104.22.168/index.php?ln=eng&ds=qa&lv=browse&QR=3285&dgn=4>; bold emphasis ours)
It is the Quran and Islamic narrations, not the Holy Bible, which degrade women and place them on the level of animals and property that a man owns and enjoys.
His points again have already been refuted.
It not the Quranic and Islamic narrations that degrade women it is in fact your own Bible. Shamoun not only failed to prove Islam degrades women but also exposed himself as a deceiver and taking things out of context and making up arguments showing that he is also a liar. All of his cheap and weak arguments have been refuted. So I must thank Shamoun for exposing himself for all to see, as for women in the Bible please visit these links:
Rebuttals, and exposing the lies of the Answering Islam team section.
Rebuttals to Sam Shamoun's Articles section.
Sami Zaatari's Rebuttals section.
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