Q: A Christian colleague of mine asked me why the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) married 'Aa'ishah (RA) when she was nine years old and he was nearly sixty, and was he intimate with her at that age or what? In fact I do not know how to respond to that.
A: Praise be to Allaah. The Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) married 'Aa'ishah (RA) after he married Sawdah bint Zam'ah (RA). She - 'Aa'ishah - was the only virgin whom he (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) married. And he consummated the marriage with her when she was nine years old. Among her virtues was the fact that the Revelation did not descend when he was under one cover with any of his wives other than her. She was one of the dearest of all people to the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam), and news of her innocence was revealed from above the seven heavens. She was one of the most knowledgeable of his wives, and one of the most knowledgeable women of the ummah as a whole. The senior companions of the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) used to refer to her opinion and consult her.
With regard to the story of her marriage, the Prophet (sallallahualayhi wa sallam) had grieved over the death of the Mother of the Believers Khadeejah, who had supported him and stood by his side, and he called the year in which she died “The Year of Sorrow”. Then he married Sawdah, who was an older woman and was not very beautiful; rather he married her to console her after her husband had died and she stayed among mushrik people. Four years later the Prophet (salla llahu alayhi wa sallam) married 'Aa'ishah (RA), and he was over fifty. Perhaps the reasons for the marriage were as follows:
1- He saw a dream about marrying her. It is proven in al-Bukhaari from the hadeeth of 'Aa'ishah (RA) that the Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa sallam) said to her:
"You were shown to me twice in a dream. I saw that you were wrapped in a piece of silk, and it was said, 'This is your wife.' I uncovered her and saw that it was you. I said, 'If this is from Allaah then it will come to pass,” (Bukhaari).
As to whether this is a prophetic vision as it appears to be, or a regular dream that may be subject to interpretation, there was a difference of opinion among the scholars, as mentioned by al-Haafiz in Fath al-Baari, 9/181.
2 - The characteristics of intelligence and smartness that the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) had noticed in 'Aa'ishah even as a small child, so he wanted to marry her so that she would be more able than others to transmit reports of what he did and said. Infact, as stated above, she was a reference point for the Sahaabah (RA) with regard to their affairs and rulings.
3 - The love of the Prophet (sallallaahu olayhi wa sallam) for her father Abu Bakr (RA), and the persecution that Abu Bakr (RA) had suffered for the sake of the call of truth, which he bore with patience. He was the strongest of people in faith and the most sincere in it after the Prophets. It may be noted that among his wives were those who were young and old, the daughter of his sworn enemy, the daughter of his closest friend. One of them occupied herself with raising orphans, another distinguished herself from others by fasting and praying qiyaam a great deal... They represented all kinds of people, through whom the Messenger of Allaah (sallallahu alayhi wa sallam) was able to set out a way for the Muslims showing, how to deal properly with all kinds of people. [See al-Seerah al-Nabawiyyah fi Daw' al-Masaadir al-Asliyyah, p.711].
Young But Ready
With regard to the issue of her being young and your being confused about that, you should note that the Prophet (sallallaah alayhi wa sallam) grew up in a hot country, the Arabian Peninsula. Usually in hot countries adolescence comes early and people marry early. This is how the people of Arabia were until recently. Moreover, women vary greatly in their development and their physical readiness for marriage.
If you think - may Allaah guide you that the Prophet (salla llaahu alayhi wa sallam) did not marry any virgin other than 'Aa'ishah (RA), and that all his other wives had been previously married, this will refute the notion spread by many hostile sources, that the basic motive behind the Prophet's marriages was physical desire and enjoyment of women, because if that was his intention he would have chosen only those who were virgins and beautiful etc. Such slanders against the Prophet of Mercy (salla llahu alayhi wa sallam) by kaafirs and others of their ilk, are indicative of their inability to find fault with the law and religion that he brought from Allaah, so they try to find ways to criticize Islam with regard to issues that are not related to sharee'ah.
And Allaah is the Source of strength. May Allaah send blessings and peace upon our Prophet Muhammad and his family and companions. [For more information see Zaad al-Ma'aad,1/ 106]. All the questions above were answeredby Shaykh Muhammad ibn Saalih al-Munajjid
Q: Is it permissible to supplicate during Sujud (prostration) for worldly matters?
A: The Sunnah (supererogatory act of worship following the example of the Prophet) for the praying person is to start sujud with the adhkar (invocations) reported from the Prophet (sallaallahu alyhi wa sallam): Subhana Rabbiya Al-A 'la (Glory be to my Lord, the Most High) ten times as this is perfect number of glorification. Scholars maintain that the less perfect number of glorification is three times, and what is sufficient is one time. This is supported by the evidence reported by the Five Compilers of Hadith (Imams Ahmad, AbuDawud, Al-Tirmidhy, Al-Nasa'y and Ibn Majah) save Al-Tirmidhy on the authority of Hudhayfah (may Allah be pleased with him) in the Hadith about his Salah (Prayer) with the Prophet (sallaallahu alayhiwa sallam) at night, in which he said:"I offered Salah along with the Prophet (sallaallahu alayhi wasallam). In his Ruku ' (bowing), he would say: "Subhana Rabbiya Al-'Azhim (Glory be to my Lord, theMost Great)," and in his Sujud, he would say: "Subhana Rabbiya Al-A'la."
It was reported on the authority of 'Uqbah ibn 'Amir(RA) that he said: 'When (the Ayah (Qur'anic verse) reading) "Glorify the Name of your Lord, the Most High" was revealed, the Messenger of Allah (sallaallahualayhi wa sallam) said: "Make it in your Sujud."
As for the evidence that the perfect number of glorification is ten times, it is what was reported by Ahmad, Abu Dawud, and Al-Nasa'y from Sa' id ibn Jubayr on the authority of Anas that he said:"After the Messenger's (sallaallahualayhi wa sallam) passing away, I have not prayed behind anyone whose salaah is more similar to the Messenger's Salah (sallaallahu alayhi wa sallam) than this boy, meaning' Umar ibn 'Abdul- ' Aziz.We estimated the number of the glorifications that he made during his Ruku' to be ten and in his Sujud also to be ten".
However, if - after that - a person adds a Du' a' Ma'thur (supplication based on transmitted reports) or Adhkar prescribed in Sujud, this is good. This includes saying:"Subbuhun quddusun Rabbulmala'ikati war-ruh (Glorified, Holy,Lord of the Angels and the Ruh(Gabriel)", "Subhanaka Allahummawa bihamdika. Allahumma ighfir li(Glory be to You. O Allah, our Lord, and praise be to You, O Allah, forgive me)", "Allahummaighfir li dhanbi kullahu. diqqahu wajillahu. wa-awwalahu wa-akhirahu wa- 'alaniyatahu wa-sirrahu (O Allah forgive me all my sins, slight and grave, first and last, open and secret thereof).” It is permissible for people to ask their Lord for whatever they need, as asking Allah and humiliating oneself to Him is in conformity with the meaning of Al-Uluhiyyah (Allah's Exclusive Right to be worshipped) and answering the seekers accords with the meaning of Ar-Rububiyyah (Oneness of Allah's Lordship). Whenever a person perceives this, the light of Tawhid (belief in the Oneness of Allah/monotheism) and Iman (faith/belief) will fill their hearts and they will resort to their Lord in all their worldly and religious affairs. In this case, a person is given glad tidings and should hope for the best.
Sujud is a position where Du' a'(supplication) is more likely to be answered, for the Prophet(sallaallahu alayhi wa sallam) said:"As for Sujud, strive hard in Du'a' there in because it is more likely that your Du ' a' will be answered."
And Allaah is the Source of strength. May Allaah send blessings and peace upon our Prophet Muhammad and his family and companions.
This article was culled from the publications of Deen Communication Limited