Somewhere in America a woman is battered, usually by her 'intimate' partner, every 15 seconds. (UN Study: The Status of Women, Year 2000)
Whilst the above is only a glimpse of the treatment meted out to women in the 'civilised' West, Islam has entrenched the status, value and dignity of a woman like no other creed or culture. The woman forms the nucleus of society, her lap is an “institution of learning” and her presence is a source of light. Respecting, honouring and appreciating the wife earns one Jannah.
With all this said, the reality is that violence against women is rife and a reality in Muslim homes. Cowardly men choose to exploit their wives to the extent of beating and battering them.
No matter what the wife does to irritate the husband or to provoke his temper, beating her up for her inherent weaknesses is being savage. Some of her mistakes may be brought upon due to tensions in the marriage or even out of fear for the husband. Worse still, is to beat a woman, despite her loyalty and her doing her level best to please her husband. This is the height of ingratitude and hypocrisy.
The Noble Quran and Sunnah have given clear methods of dealing with a wayward wife which include: counselling, discussion with wisdom and certain sanctions that would prompt a change in behaviour and attitude. However, to beat up the wife, causing her pain and injury is prohibited in Islam.
Allah Ta'ala has entrusted the woman in the Nikah of a man with His Honourable name, and as such she enters his space with trust and hope that he will be her protector. When this man becomes her tormentor and breaks this trust then he loses his dignity and respect and falls from grace. He becomes a criminal coward.
Instances of wife bashing are becoming increasingly common and our Centre encounters such cases regularly. This is a sad indictment on our community, and especially on men who pretend to be 'holy' out of the home, yet are the tormentors of their women within the home. A husband should avoid all forms of abuse and torment, be it physical, verbal or emotional.
A man who is guilty of such abuse should:
1. Reflect over his insignificance, weaknesses and sins. Think deeply “… if Allah Ta'ala had to unleash his wrath on me for my sins what would happen”?
2. Seek forgiveness and pledge never to lift a hand on the wife again
3. Make sincere Taubah and Istighfar
4. Join the company of the pious and make a genuine effort to reform one's character.