Posts Tagged ‘beating women’

“Men are the protectors and maintainers of women, because Allah has given the one more (strength) than the other, and because they support them from their means. Therefore the righteous women are devoutly obedient, and guard in (the husband’s) absence what Allah would have them guard. As to those women on whose part ye fear disloyalty and ill-conduct, admonish them (first), (Next), refuse to share their beds, (And last) beat them (lightly); but if they return to obedience, seek not against them Means (of annoyance): For Allah is Most High, great (above you all).” (4:34)

This verse is quoted to support that men have the right to beat their wives.  That’s all very well if you’re reading this translation and many others, however, let us look at the Arabic word used here that supposedly means TO BEAT- idribuhunna, which derives from the word daraba.  In this context, the word beat does not imply ‘hit’ but rather ‘leave’.  If you were to look at the same word that’s used elsewhere in the Qur’an, you would see that the implication of beat if not to “hit” but ‘to leave.’

 “O ye who believe! When ye go abroad (darabtum) In the cause of Allah, Investigate carefully, And say not to anyone Who offers you a salutation: ‘Thou art none of a Believer!’ Coveting the perishable good Of this life: with Allah Are profits and spoils abundant.  Even thus were ye yourselves Before, till Allah conferred On you His favours: therefore Carefully investigate.  For Allah is well aware Of all that ye do.” (4:94)

In this context, the word daraba means to leave.   Note also that the word daraba is used twice in Chapter Four, establishing a prototype.  Thus the word daraba implies leaving, not hitting.

 Still not convinced?

The Qur’an states plenty of times that husbands have ZERO right to harm their wives in anyway imaginable:

1.        “…Do not retain your wives to harm them…( 2:231)”

2.       If a wife fears cruelty or desertion on her husband’s part, there is no blame on them if they arrange an amicable settlement between themselves; and such settlement is best; even though men’s souls are swayed by greed. But if ye do good and practise self-restraint, God is well-acquainted with all that ye do.  (4:128)”

3.      “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.  (4:19)“ 

The last resort is not to beat an unfaithful wife, but to leave her.  Note that I use the word “unfaithful” because that is the main focus of chapter four.

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