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Taking another wife if the first wife will be hurt


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#201 Irishman

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Posted 24 September 2009 - 10:18 AM

The topic of slavery is OT(off topic) for this thread, but since I mentioned slavery in my response, and many others have mentioned it, I will
breifly reply to this issue.

I did not want to bring it off topic, and discuss the rights and wrongs of slavery, but how something which was practised a long time ago and mentioned in the Quran ( regarding rules on how to treat slaves ), not longer seems appropriate in the modern world.

#202 Ali Askari

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Posted 24 September 2009 - 10:22 AM

Bismillah,


I would do it better and follow the example of Ahlulbayt (as), yes, it would help to get better life and education for some poeple.

The Ahl Al Bayt bought servant from traders because, at that time, this was the only was to get someone to help you with household chores.
There were no employement agencies, newspaper classified ads, or recruiters at that time. The Prophet and Ahl Al Bayt only bought because there was no other way ,and they never sold servants (they released them), and they never engaged in this as as a profession or way to make money. The act of making money by buying and selling people is what the ahadith is addressing. If you want, I will try to find it in Arabic to clarify.
Also, they treated their servants like their own family. It is a sahih hadith from what I know.


Bismillah,

I know how to treath servant or slave of course. I love all poeple. As for the merits of ahlubayt (as) they did not even buy slaves for their personal gain, but the gain of that slave. Two main point about slavery and religion. Salman (as) gaved himself for as slave for Prophet Muhammed (SAAS). This sets the sunnah that people can do it. Also the fact that Ahlulbayt (as) bought slaves sets the sunnah that we can buy slaves. Issue that remains is that we need to have legal document that slave/servant is legal and not taken by force.

Edited by Ali Askari, 24 September 2009 - 10:29 AM.


#203 Ali Askari

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Posted 24 September 2009 - 10:27 AM

I did not want to bring it off topic, and discuss the rights and wrongs of slavery, but how something which was practised a long time ago and mentioned in the Quran ( regarding rules on how to treat slaves ), not longer seems appropriate in the modern world.



Yes, regarding the rules how to treat slaves it fits perfectly to modern world also.

#204 Jubei

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Posted 24 September 2009 - 10:35 AM

Why is the lack of absolute morals not evidence that intrinsic morals don't exist?


Because nothing that humans do is ever absolute. Morality, or the reasoning behind it is not a science. It is an art and so absolute morality can not exist.

Morality is simply defined by the difference between what is felt to be right and what is felt to be wrong.


Exactly. Feelings are not absolute, and the lack of absolute feelings is not evidence of lack of intrinsic feelings (our feelings are not drummed in to us, entirely by society). If the descriptive term is vague, then so is the description.

I agree though that it carries absolute connotations just as the words "advance", "modern" , "justice" etc. do with Marble's posts.

That is what I meant. It is the usage of the noun in an absolute way clouds the lack of understanding we have on the topic. Morality is too complex a system to be labelled such.

One can also justify categorising Pluto as a planet but that doesn't make the justification a planet.

But pluto is not a vague human notion that can not be pinned with scientific accuracy. It exists only in the description of it, and the description is the justification. If we go by the definition that morality is the difference between what is right and what is wrong, then the difference is a descriptive term, which is a justification.

Morality does not exist on its own. It is like appreciating a painting, it requires justification to have a meaning.

I don't think morality drifts, I think morality is always a subject of considerable interest to people and a great deal of effort goes into pinning it down and people a very much aware with any changes of current. I can see what you are saying but I'm not sure the general picture is accurate. Morality today in the West is changing at a considerable pace but I'm not sure what the something would be to cause it. I certainly wouldn't describe it as a drifting.


Unfortunately the term drift has been taken and given a meaning I didn't want it to have. It is more like a drifting car on ice. It is naive to think it is not directed, but also to think that it is controlled. The largest controlling factor is simply human group behaviour. Homosexuality makes a lot of noise, it becomes morally acceptable. It then drifts out of favour as people get more conservative, then becomes morally unacceptable. It then makes more noise and group polarity makes it morally acceptable again. It reminds me of something that is drifting, hence the use of the word drift.

You see morality as progressing through stages and this is your evidence for its intrinsic nature?


No, it is intrinsic because we have an ability to make morals. In the same way emotions are considered intrinsic because we have them from birth. They are still highly impressionable, but their capacity exists, and so is intrinsic. Language is the same, and morality falls under the same category.

When I say morality, don't forget I am not talking absolute morality.

I'm always susicious when I here an argument that something has never worked in the history of mankind. We wouldn't be where we are today if we didn't believe things could work that have never worked before. I think that for very many generations fundamentalism has worked very well. It depends though very much on what is meant by working well. the way i se it is that it wouldn't exist if it hadn't worked well. On the other hand its also obvious that Western society has managed phenominally well by coming out of the religious dark ages and into the age of reason.


But it is also silly to learn nothing from a repeated event in history. Rigid morality has been imposed in the same way many times over and I would dispute that fundamentalism of this kind has ever worked. In fact I would dispute this strongly.

The argument that we wouldn't be here today if we believe that things that haven't worked won't work is a moot point. People just try a different approach. Rigid moral imposition is a singular approach.

If you mean we have the capacity to decide what is right and wrong according to morals handed down from God then that's fully in line with main religious doctrine. Nope sorry, I still haven't seen any evidence for the intrinsic nature of morals.


I don't understand. Something given by God is intrinsic.

We don't need intrinsic morals in order to evolve no more than animals do. How do you measure improvement?


Again I don't understand. Animals have morals, we just don't call it that because we fail to understand what morals are, and hence label the whole emotional concept as morality and forget to label an animal term at all. And improvement does not exist. It is preferred existence. Monkeys are not an improvement over velociraptors. Morality in the same way changes, but does not improve (unless you believe in a messiah, in which case, improvement can not be measured until the messiah comes and we have a yard stick to measure it against).

Please, what is the perfection we have been given the capacity to reach?


Who should I know? There is nothing to measure it against. I can not go back in time and look at the morality of prophets, nor go forward in time to look at the morality of messiahs to tell if we are close. It is futile to put markings on a mercury thermometer if you don't know any absolute temperatures to relate to.

#205 Irishman

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Posted 24 September 2009 - 10:37 AM

Yes, regarding the rules how to treat slaves it fits perfectly to modern world also.

I for one am glad that slavery has been abolished and has no place in the modern world. Slave labour, in terms of paying people very little money for hard work still occurs, but that is very different to slavery practices of long ago.

#206 kadhim

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Posted 24 September 2009 - 11:00 AM

Marbles! You're making me feel like I'm in a graduate seminar on Hegel, what with all the talk of weltanshaaung, weltgeist, zeitgeist, and the like. ;)
All joking aside, thanks, Marbles, for trying to stir up stagnant waters of thought. It's much needed.

I see a few misconceptions being rehashed here about the nature of Islamic law, and I want to address them.
The first is that every law existing in the Prophet's time is timeless and general. The second is that when the Prophet came, he completely rewrote the entire functioning of his society from the ground up. Third, that nothing is left to the natural, organic evolution of society over time.

All three of these claims are false.

As to the first, it is orthodox understanding amongst the educated that Islamic laws are of two types; the general laws that are always valid and those which are specific to the particularities of a social, historical, technological context.

In relation to the second, there is also no serious dispute amongst those in the know as to the falseness of this claim. The prophet made some reforms to his society for customary practices that were unacceptable and which could reasonably be abolished. Other existing customary practices were tolerated, as they were positive, or harmless. Still others were arguably negative, but could not reasonably be abolished outright. Instead, a gradual approach was taken, with reforms made to these practices, and teachings made to point people toward the realization that the practice be phased out over time. One example of this second is slavery. Slavery was widespread. Total abolition was impractical at the time. So instead, reforms were made to the practice, ethical guidelines for humane treatment of slaves were given, and incentives were put in place within the structure of the religion to encourage the freeing of slaves, either as a kaffarah to atone for sins, or to earn thawaab/blessings.
Polygamy arguably fits into this as well. Polygamy was practiced in excess in the time. Some had dozens or hundreds of wives. Islam at the time scaled this back to a maximum of four, and set stringent conditions that needed to be fulfilled in terms of equality of treatment for a polygamous union to be considered religiously acceptable. As the Quran teaches, these conditions are nearly impossible to fulfill, and the Quran clearly advises monogamy.

As for the third point, the Islamic teachings clearly show an openness to allowing Islamic societies the flexibility to determine much of their own social customs, so long as higher Islamic moral principles are not violated. In the spread of Islam, the principle of 'urf, or existing custom was important. There are a lot of Quranic verses where people are instructed to do things, for example, the payment of wetnurses, "bil ma'roof," that is, according to what is customary. What is customary? Well, it depends on the time and place. Just as the prophet kept much of the existing social customs, as Islam spread, it was understood by scholars that people have a great deal of flexibility to decide how to live their lives, and neutral or positive existing customs were kept. Similarly, it was understood that evolving customs that did not go against higher Islamic values and which did not try to add obligatory new things to the religion were acceptable.

Now as for whether polygamy stays or goes and whether there should be fatwas or whether such fatwas would be legitimate is beside the point. The scholars will not directly decide this. The people, in the sum of their individual decisions, will shape the 'urf, the custom. Scholars can debate about the virtues of polygamy and whether it is permissible or not, but if 99.9% of the men in point of fact can't afford it and don't want the hassle, and 99.9% of the women, when it comes down to it, don't want their husbands taking second wives, and start to put clauses in their marriage contracts that the husband, at pain of divorce, cannot marry a second without her written permission the point is rather moot, isn't it? See also the notion of wives needing permission to go out of the house, or needing the husband's permission to divorce. If it becomes a custom that pretty much all women work around this and put clauses in the marriage contract to guarantee their freedom of movement and right to divorce, then the maraja will either be shamed into recognizing the rights to free movement and divorce for women, clause or no clause, or risk admitting their own irrelevance.
See also the conservative notion that men and women should have little to no contact with each other before permanent marriage and that there is no dating. Eventually, due to the onslaught of the modern lifestyle, it will be virtually inevitable that some form of dating-like courtship will become normal even within the Muslim community. God willing within the structured constraint of the Islamic institution of muta’a, if community leaders have the maturity and foresight to encourage Islamically acceptable routes to their children staying sane. But the trends are leading in a certain direction, and one way or another, something will give.

#207 Fiasco

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Posted 24 September 2009 - 01:59 PM

Definetly, Sharia law is subject to some level of modification if society so requires it.

But there really hasn't been a persuasive case put forth by anyone here that polygamy is no longer appropriate for this time period and it should thus be discarded.

I think a reformation of how polygamy is implemented is perhaps a more practical and realistic method of dealing with any issues of injustice or oppression. It is a practice that holds many benefits, so to simply throw it out and discard it is an injustice in itself.

#208 husseintop

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Posted 24 September 2009 - 03:03 PM

I for one am glad that slavery has been abolished and has no place in the modern world. Slave labour, in terms of paying people very little money for hard work still occurs, but that is very different to slavery practices of long ago.


Go on with you, I'm sure your envious of all your ancestors sold into slavery in the sunny Carribean a few centuries ago. :shaytan:

#209 husseintop

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Posted 24 September 2009 - 03:08 PM

Definetly, Sharia law is subject to some level of modification if society so requires it.

But there really hasn't been a persuasive case put forth by anyone here that polygamy is no longer appropriate for this time period and it should thus be discarded.

I think a reformation of how polygamy is implemented is perhaps a more practical and realistic method of dealing with any issues of injustice or oppression. It is a practice that holds many benefits, so to simply throw it out and discard it is an injustice in itself.


The only real reform that's really needed is to end the injustice of discrimination so its not just polygyny but also polyandry.

#210 husseintop

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Posted 24 September 2009 - 03:42 PM

Marbles! You're making me feel like I'm in a graduate seminar on Hegel, what with all the talk of weltanshaaung, weltgeist, zeitgeist, and the like. ;)
All joking aside, thanks, Marbles, for trying to stir up stagnant waters of thought. It's much needed.

I see a few misconceptions being rehashed here about the nature of Islamic law, and I want to address them.
The first is that every law existing in the Prophet's time is timeless and general. The second is that when the Prophet came, he completely rewrote the entire functioning of his society from the ground up. Third, that nothing is left to the natural, organic evolution of society over time.

All three of these claims are false.

As to the first, it is orthodox understanding amongst the educated that Islamic laws are of two types; the general laws that are always valid and those which are specific to the particularities of a social, historical, technological context.

In relation to the second, there is also no serious dispute amongst those in the know as to the falseness of this claim. The prophet made some reforms to his society for customary practices that were unacceptable and which could reasonably be abolished. Other existing customary practices were tolerated, as they were positive, or harmless. Still others were arguably negative, but could not reasonably be abolished outright. Instead, a gradual approach was taken, with reforms made to these practices, and teachings made to point people toward the realization that the practice be phased out over time. One example of this second is slavery. Slavery was widespread. Total abolition was impractical at the time. So instead, reforms were made to the practice, ethical guidelines for humane treatment of slaves were given, and incentives were put in place within the structure of the religion to encourage the freeing of slaves, either as a kaffarah to atone for sins, or to earn thawaab/blessings.
Polygamy arguably fits into this as well. Polygamy was practiced in excess in the time. Some had dozens or hundreds of wives. Islam at the time scaled this back to a maximum of four, and set stringent conditions that needed to be fulfilled in terms of equality of treatment for a polygamous union to be considered religiously acceptable. As the Quran teaches, these conditions are nearly impossible to fulfill, and the Quran clearly advises monogamy.

As for the third point, the Islamic teachings clearly show an openness to allowing Islamic societies the flexibility to determine much of their own social customs, so long as higher Islamic moral principles are not violated. In the spread of Islam, the principle of 'urf, or existing custom was important. There are a lot of Quranic verses where people are instructed to do things, for example, the payment of wetnurses, "bil ma'roof," that is, according to what is customary. What is customary? Well, it depends on the time and place. Just as the prophet kept much of the existing social customs, as Islam spread, it was understood by scholars that people have a great deal of flexibility to decide how to live their lives, and neutral or positive existing customs were kept. Similarly, it was understood that evolving customs that did not go against higher Islamic values and which did not try to add obligatory new things to the religion were acceptable.

Now as for whether polygamy stays or goes and whether there should be fatwas or whether such fatwas would be legitimate is beside the point. The scholars will not directly decide this. The people, in the sum of their individual decisions, will shape the 'urf, the custom. Scholars can debate about the virtues of polygamy and whether it is permissible or not, but if 99.9% of the men in point of fact can't afford it and don't want the hassle, and 99.9% of the women, when it comes down to it, don't want their husbands taking second wives, and start to put clauses in their marriage contracts that the husband, at pain of divorce, cannot marry a second without her written permission the point is rather moot, isn't it? See also the notion of wives needing permission to go out of the house, or needing the husband's permission to divorce. If it becomes a custom that pretty much all women work around this and put clauses in the marriage contract to guarantee their freedom of movement and right to divorce, then the maraja will either be shamed into recognizing the rights to free movement and divorce for women, clause or no clause, or risk admitting their own irrelevance.
See also the conservative notion that men and women should have little to no contact with each other before permanent marriage and that there is no dating. Eventually, due to the onslaught of the modern lifestyle, it will be virtually inevitable that some form of dating-like courtship will become normal even within the Muslim community. God willing within the structured constraint of the Islamic institution of muta’a, if community leaders have the maturity and foresight to encourage Islamically acceptable routes to their children staying sane. But the trends are leading in a certain direction, and one way or another, something will give.


No not really beside the point. Often laws are enacted to protect the very weakest 0.1% of the population who are otherwise open to exploitation. Only a small fraction of a population are confined to a wheelchair and yet legislation may be enacted to ensure they have access to public buildings and can safely come out again in case of fire. Certain rights simply cannot be negated whatever contract has been signed. What is conservative is relative isn't it? In Scandinavian society marriage itself is becoming a conservative practice. To some monogamous relationships are conservative. I don't believe it is responsible for a society's morals to be decided simply by people's behaviour as you advocate. Governments in liberal democracies often bring in legislation to try to change behaviour regarded as harmful both in the short and long term. For example legislation aimed at cutting smoking, like age limits for the sale of tobacco, increased duties, restrictions on smoking in certain areas etc. etc.

I think we should be careful about considering certain trends to be inevitable. Humanists a century ago thought humanitarian progress was inevitable then came two world wars showing up the most despicable behaviour imaginable of the "civilised world". Would you also say that it is inevitable that Muslims will abandon their religion with the onslaught of teh modern lifestyle, in which case it becomes irrelevant what is Islamically acceptable doesn't it? Yes, trends are leading in a certain direction but we shouldn't think trends have a life of their own, we are still the masters of our destiny.

#211 kadhim

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Posted 24 September 2009 - 03:59 PM

You miss the point. For certain of these things, it makes no difference whether it is officially forbidden by jurists. They will simply go out of practice. Conditions may reverse at a later time, or they may not. Trendlines are that women will not accept to marry men who want multiple wives, and men will cease to want to marry multiple women. Women will cease to put up with men who try to control their movements and the right of divorce, and men will adjust.

And there is a certain large proportion of Islamic law like this that is able to change and adapt itself over time with changing customs and ways of thinking without it ceasing to be Islam. The finer details change, but the key roots, branches, principles and goals are preserved. There is some limit to this. Obviously if people start abandoning prayer, or fasting, or hajj, or belief in God, or in the justice of God, then you are shifting the very foundations of the building, and making something else. If the drift of human custom washes away these sorts of things, then the religion will die. God willing, however, this will not happen. Thanks be to God, the religion contains within itself the ability to shift and transform on the secondary issues so that the primary are preserved.

#212 kaniz-e-zainab

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Posted 24 September 2009 - 05:58 PM

personally i wudnt mind my husband going for a temporary marriage or having a second or third wife...but i wud certainly feel a bit uncomfortable if he comes n ask for my permission to go for a temporary marriage or have another wife....i think i wud raise hell...lolz....i personally dont object to the idea of temporary marriage or having more than one wife....n i dont think its necessary for a man to asks for his wife's permission...the issue is tht he should care for her feelings, n tht he can do even after having another wife...the man should be strong enuff to maintain the balance...having one wife is no easy task or no small responsibilty, so when u want to go for another one u ought to be strong and sensible to understand wht u r doing n why u r doing it n if r capabl eenuff to handle th whole situation nicely........and to all those who think we are more civilized than the days when "mutaa" was implemented, i just want to say that yes apparently we are very civilized but in true sense we are far less civilized than the ppl of those days...we are far too ahead of those ppl in committing sins, exploiting rights, doing things wrongs and we are far too ahead in covering for our wrongs with one or the other so-called sensible logics and reasons !!!

#213 Whizbee

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Posted 27 September 2009 - 03:59 AM

Not talking about polygyny but I will have to agree with Marbles and kadhim that it is time some laws are changed.

Here's the fatwa in full:

<span style='font-size:14pt;line-height:100%'>مسألة 12 : لا يجوز وطء الزوجة قبل إكمال تسع سنين ، دواما كان النكاح أو منقطعا ، و أما سائر الاستمتاعات كاللمس بشهوة و الضم و التفخيذ فلا بأس بها حتى فى الرضيعة ، و لو وطأها قبل التسع و لم يفضها لم يترتب عليه شى‏ء غير الاثم على الاقوى ، و إن أفضاها بأن جعل مسلكى البول و الحيض واحدا أو مسلكى الحيض و الغائط واحدا حرم عليه وطؤها أبدا لكن على الاحوط فى الصورة الثانية ، و على أي حال لم تخرج عن زوجيته على الاقوى ، فيجري عليها أحكامها من التوارث و حرمة الخامسة و حرمة أختها معها و غيرها ، و يجب عليه نفقتها مادامت حية و إن طلقها بل و إن تزوجت بعد الطلاق على الاحوط ، بل لا يخلو من قوة ، و يجب عليه دية الافضاء ، و هى دية النفس ، فإذا كانت حرة فلها نصف دية الرجل مضافا إلى المهر الذي استحقته بالعقد و الدخول ، و لو دخل بزوجته بعد إكمال التسع فأفضاها لم تحرم عليه و لم تثبت الدية ، و لكن الاحوط الانفاق عليها مادامت حية و إن كان الاقوى عدم الوجوب . </span>

http://www.wilayah.i...ir/tahrir25.php

Can be found here as well:

<span style='font-size:14pt;line-height:100%'>مسألة 8 : لا يجوز وطء الزوجة قبل إكمال تسع سنين، دواماً كان النكاح أو منقطعاً، واما سائر الاستمتاعات كاللمس بشهوة والتقبيل والضم والتفخيذ فلا بأس بها، ولو وطئها قبل اكمال التسع ولم يفضها لم يترتب عليه شيء غير الاثم على الاقوى، ـ والافضاء هو التمزق الموجب لاتحاد مسلكي البول والحيض أو مسلكي الحيض والغائط أو اتحاد الجميع ـ ولو افضاها لم تخرج عن زوجيته، فتجري عليها احكامها من التوارث وحرمة الخامسة وحرمة اختها معها وغيرها، ولكن قيل: يحرم عليه وطؤها ابداً. إلاّ أن الاقوى خلافه، ولا سيما إذا اندمل الجرح ـ بعلاج أو بغيره ـ نعم تجب عليه دية الافضاء، وهي دية النفس ان طلقها، بل وإن لم يطلقها على المشهور، ولا يخلو عن وجه، وتجب عليه نفقتها ما دامت مفضاة وإن نشزت أو طلقها، بل وإن تزوجت بعد الطلاق على الاحوط.</span>

http://www.seestani....03/menhaj1.html


TRANSLATION of the first, second is pretty much the same:

It is not permissible to have sexual intercourse with one's wife that hasn’t reached nine years of age, be it permanent or temporary marriage. But there is no problem with all other pleasures such as lustful touch, embracing, and rubbing again the thighs, even with a suckling infant. If he does have sexual intercourse before nine years of age and does not penetrate, there is no penalty, but he has committed a sin. If he does penetrate causing the vagina and urethra openings to be one, she will become forever haram for him. Although this is as a precautionary measure. And it is more probable that her status as his wife is not removed. And the rulings of inheritance, and the prohibition of a fifth wife or marriage to her sister applies. He is also responsible for her maintenance as long as she is alive, even if he divorces her and even if she marries someone else after his divorcing her as a precautionary measure. And he is liable for blood money for the penetration and the amount is equivalent to that of an individual. If she is a free-woman, the amount is half that of a man, plus the dowry that she became entitled to through the 3aqd and penetration. If he penetrates his wife after the age of nine (causing the same damage as quoted above) , she does not become haram to him and there is no evidence that blood money is liable, but as a precautionary measure, he should maintain her as long as she is alive, although it is more probable that this is not obligatory.

http://www.shiachat.com/forum/index.php?/topic/61613-another-disturbing-quote/page__view__findpost__p__810186

Now that is seriously sick [sicker than the rest of the ruling, actually]. He messes her up and "it is more probable" that maintaining her isn't obligatory for him.

EDIT: I was searching for something else and came across this ruling and I think it's pretty relevant to the discussion that was taking place.

Edited by Whizbee, 27 September 2009 - 04:14 AM.

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#214 Abu Hadi

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Posted 28 September 2009 - 08:42 AM

Salams,

Sister, there are a couple of different issues here that I think should really be addressed seperately in order to understand the context and effect of this fatawa. I understand completely(I wish I could go into more detail but I can't) how this fatwa makes you feel and I feel the same way. It is apparently incomprehensible how a marja taqleed could basically justify child molestation. There are a couple of questions I have about this fatwa that are OT for this topic, but since I think it has basically run it's course and is already far OT in it's current state, Oh well.

First, Has this fatwa been authenticated to come from Sayyid Sistani himself or just from his office? As you know, there are many people who speak all kinds of nonsense in the name of a marjaa and then are denounced once there statements reach the marjaa himself. Also, the enemies of Ahl Al Bayt post alot of fake fatwa which need to be authenticated before they can be discussed. BTW, the links you posted to the source for this fatwa is not working.Sayyid Sistani's site is sistani.org not seestani.com.

Second, let's suppose it is authentic and from him directly (which has not at all been established in my mind). We then have to look at this fatwa in the general context of what marriage actually is all about in the Islamic context. From every (authentic) thing that I have read, marriage is a voluntary agreement between sane adults. A precondition for intimate contact between a male and female in the context of Islam is marriage and a precondition for marriage is always maturity (balghat). A girl who has not yet reached maturity cannot enter into a marriage contract and is thus unmarried and thus cannot have intimate contact with a man (any intimate contact including touching, etc). So if you see hundreds of fatwa that make maturity a precondition for marriage and one that doesn't, you should question the one(this one) and not the hundreds.

So it seems hasty to me to equate polygamy (which is in the Quran and is Sunnat of the Prophet(p.b.u.h) and Imams(a.s)) with immature marriage.
One has a very solid basis in Islam and the other has a very questionable basis. If you look at it from a practical angle, you have to admit that there are many women who have benefited from a polygamous relationship (by getting spiritual, emotional, and even financial support from a husband that may have otherwise not been available to them) and none that have benefited from immature marriage.
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#215 Whizbee

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Posted 28 September 2009 - 08:56 AM

First, Has this fatwa been authenticated to come from Sayyid Sistani himself or just from his office?

It has been taken from his Minhaj as Saliheen. Doesn't get more authentic than that.

As you know, there are many people who speak all kinds of nonsense in the name of a marjaa and then are denounced once there statements reach the marjaa himself. Also, the enemies of Ahl Al Bayt post alot of fake fatwa which need to be authenticated before they can be discussed. BTW, the links you posted to the source for this fatwa is not working.Sayyid Sistani's site is sistani.org not seestani.com.

It's not just Ayatullah Sistani. Almost every other marja has issued similar rulings. The post I earlier quoted has Ayatullah Khamenei's ruling on the issue too and he says the same thing.

A girl who has not yet reached maturity cannot enter into a marriage contract and is thus unmarried and thus cannot have intimate contact with a man (any intimate contact including touching, etc). So if you see hundreds of fatwa that make maturity a precondition for marriage and one that doesn't, you should question the one(this one) and not the hundreds.

Where did you get that from? Which scholar [apart from Ayatullah Lankarani] says that a child cannot be married?

From Sistani's resalah.

2384. The father and the paternal grandfather can contract a marriage on behalf of his minor son or daughter, or on behalf of an insane son or daughter, if they are baligh. And after the children have become baligh or the insane has become sane, he can endorse or abrogate it, if the contracted marriage involves any moral lapse or scandal.
And if the marriage contract does not involve any moral lapse or scandal, but the na-baligh son or daughter calls off the marriage, then as an obligatory precaution, a Talaq or a renewed Nikah, whatever the case may be, must be recited.


So it seems hasty to me to equate polygamy (which is in the Quran and is Sunnat of the Prophet(p.b.u.h) and Imams(a.s)) with immature marriage.
One has a very solid basis in Islam and the other has a very questionable basis. If you look at it from a practical angle, you have to admit that there are many women who have benefited from a polygamous relationship (by getting spiritual, emotional, and even financial support from a husband that may have otherwise not been available to them) and none that have benefited from immature marriage.

I do not support the idea of banning or outlawing polygyny.
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#216 Abu Hadi

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Posted 28 September 2009 - 10:45 AM

It has been taken from his Minhaj as Saliheen. Doesn't get more authentic than that.


If the book is available online, could you please post a link

It's not just Ayatullah Sistani. Almost every other marja has issued similar rulings. The post I earlier quoted has Ayatullah Khamenei's ruling on the issue too and he says the same thing.


They have similar fatawa, but there is a major difference. While I have seen similar rulings to the effect that a marriage can be conducted on behalf of a child who is not balgha(mature), this marriage is of limited scope and for a specific, specialized purpose and DOES NOT involve giving the man the right to intimate contact with the child. It is a marriage of wakilat (protection) for a child in a specific circumstance such as an orphan.
The only fatwa I have seen that gives a man the right of intimate contact (any intimate contact) with a girl who is not mature is the one that you posted (I know this was originally posted by Wilayat but I am speaking for the purposes of this thread). So it is this condition that I am questioning.

Where did you get that from? Which scholar [apart from Ayatullah Lankarani] says that a child cannot be married?

From Sistani's resalah.

2384. The father and the paternal grandfather can contract a marriage on behalf of his minor son or daughter, or on behalf of an insane son or daughter, if they are baligh. And after the children have become baligh or the insane has become sane, he can endorse or abrogate it, if the contracted marriage involves any moral lapse or scandal.
And if the marriage contract does not involve any moral lapse or scandal, but the na-baligh son or daughter calls off the marriage, then as an obligatory precaution, a Talaq or a renewed Nikah, whatever the case may be, must be recited.


There is a problem with the translation of the fatwa as it involves several related concepts that have not been clarified. The word 'minor' child in English (at least how it is defined here in the US) means a person who is under 18 years of age. Obviously, a person can be mature(balgha) as per the Islamic definition while still being a minor(under 18). So the translation of this fatwa is unclear until we know what word is being translated as 'minor'. Also, the phrase ...if they are baligh and 'after the child have become baligh' doesn't make sense to me because it seems to set 'baligh' as a precondition for the marriage and in the very next sentence excludes it as a precondition by saying 'after the child has become baligh'. The fatwa could be read as 'If the father or paternal grandfather is baligh and sane then they can contract a marriage of their non-baligh daughter on her behalf'. But this might not be what is meant and I am not sure because, obviously, the father and grandfather are baligh (or else how could they have children?) and I don't think Sayyid Sistani would bother to put that as a condition. He is more intelligent than that. So I think the translation is bad or ambigous. If you could send me a link to the Arabic, then I will try to do a better translation and post, InshahAllah.

I do not support the idea of banning or outlawing polygyny.


OK, well i was just confused because you said you agree with Marbles and kadhim and they are saying different things. Marbles thinks that the entire concept of polygamy is outdated and should not be practiced in modern times. He was clear about that as his position so I'm glad you clarified yours.
Salams,

Edited by Abu Hadi, 28 September 2009 - 10:59 AM.

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#217 Jondab_Azdi

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Posted 28 September 2009 - 10:53 AM

If the book is available online, could you please post a link


http://www.alkadhum....j3/menhaj1.html

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#218 Jondab_Azdi

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Posted 28 September 2009 - 10:58 AM

There is a problem with the translation of the fatwa as it involves several related concepts that have not been clarified. The word 'minor' child in English (at least how it is defined here in the US) means a person who is under 18 years of age. Obviously, a person can be mature(balgha) as per the Islamic definition while still being a minor(under 18). So the translation of this fatwa is unclear until we know what word is being translated as 'minor'. Also, the phrase ...if they are baligh and 'after the child have become baligh' doesn't make sense to me because it seems to set 'baligh' as a precondition for the marriage and in the very next sentence excludes it as a precondition by saying 'after the child has become baligh'. So I think the translation is bad. If you could send me a link to the Arabic, then I will try to do a better translation and post, InshahAllah.


The "minor son or daughter" here is referring to a non-baligh child (and the one who is mentioned as "if they are baligh", that's referring to the insane son or daughter, not the minor which would be a contradiction)


http://www.shiachat....ost__p__1778142

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#219 Whizbee

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Posted 28 September 2009 - 11:23 AM

OK, well i was just confused because you said you agree with Marbles and kadhim and they are saying different things. Marbles thinks that the entire concept of polygamy is outdated and should not be practiced in modern times. He was clear about that as his position so I'm glad you clarified yours.
Salams,

That's why I said in my post...

Not talking about polygyny but I will have to agree with Marbles and kadhim that it is time some laws are changed.


And Jondab provided the references. I am surprised that you haven't ever come across these rulings. This issue has been extensively discussed on SC a gazillion times.
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#220 Abu Hadi

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Posted 28 September 2009 - 12:24 PM

That's why I said in my post...



And Jondab provided the references. I am surprised that you haven't ever come across these rulings. This issue has been extensively discussed on SC a gazillion times.


OK.

I know it has been discussed a gazillion times and I have discussed it with you ^_^ before on another thread (or maybe several, I can't remember). Still, after all this time, and after all the gazillions of threads, noone has come up with a comprehensible English translation that ties his general rulings concerning marriage with his specific fatwa regarding marriage of non-baligh children. I had a discussion on this subject with my Father in Law, who is an alim with many decades of study in fiqh, usuoul ad din, and ahkam and I am satisfied with his answers and based on this do not believe that the fatwa of Sayyid Sistani in any way allows intimate contact with non-baligh persons, males or females. Unfortunately, I did not record this discussion, it was partially in Arabic and English, and you may be offended by some of the things he had to say, not regarding the fiqh portion of the discussion (because that is clear), but as to why some keep trotting out this fatwa over and over again along with the bad English translation. We disagree on many things but I still regard you as a faithful muslima who has love for Allah(s.w.a) and Ahl Al Bayt(a.s) and I really would not enjoy offending you. I am not making assumptions about your motivation, but this is more of a general statement.

If you would like to have a detailed discussion about this fatwa, I am willing to have it, but my time is limited as of late and I usually double check things with my father in law, whose time is also limited, so it may be frustrating for you and other readers. I am still willing to have it under those 'less than ideal' conditions if that interests you. If it doesn't, let's just let this subject die here and agree to disagree. Salams,

Edited by Abu Hadi, 28 September 2009 - 12:30 PM.

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#221 Whizbee

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Posted 28 September 2009 - 12:28 PM

The translation by sister wilayah is by no means a "bad english translation". However, if you want to ignore the overwhelming proof and assume that the scholars don't allow "intimate contact" with young girls then that's your prerogative.
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#222 Marbles

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Posted 03 October 2009 - 02:56 AM

Marbles! You're making me feel like I'm in a graduate seminar on Hegel, what with all the talk of weltanshaaung, weltgeist, zeitgeist, and the like. ;)
All joking aside, thanks, Marbles, for trying to stir up stagnant waters of thought. It's much needed.

I see a few misconceptions being rehashed here about the nature of Islamic law, and I want to address them.
The first is that every law existing in the Prophet's time is timeless and general. The second is that when the Prophet came, he completely rewrote the entire functioning of his society from the ground up. Third, that nothing is left to the natural, organic evolution of society over time.

All three of these claims are false.

As to the first, it is orthodox understanding amongst the educated that Islamic laws are of two types; the general laws that are always valid and those which are specific to the particularities of a social, historical, technological context.

In relation to the second, there is also no serious dispute amongst those in the know as to the falseness of this claim. The prophet made some reforms to his society for customary practices that were unacceptable and which could reasonably be abolished. Other existing customary practices were tolerated, as they were positive, or harmless. Still others were arguably negative, but could not reasonably be abolished outright. Instead, a gradual approach was taken, with reforms made to these practices, and teachings made to point people toward the realization that the practice be phased out over time. One example of this second is slavery. Slavery was widespread. Total abolition was impractical at the time. So instead, reforms were made to the practice, ethical guidelines for humane treatment of slaves were given, and incentives were put in place within the structure of the religion to encourage the freeing of slaves, either as a kaffarah to atone for sins, or to earn thawaab/blessings.
Polygamy arguably fits into this as well. Polygamy was practiced in excess in the time. Some had dozens or hundreds of wives. Islam at the time scaled this back to a maximum of four, and set stringent conditions that needed to be fulfilled in terms of equality of treatment for a polygamous union to be considered religiously acceptable. As the Quran teaches, these conditions are nearly impossible to fulfill, and the Quran clearly advises monogamy.

As for the third point, the Islamic teachings clearly show an openness to allowing Islamic societies the flexibility to determine much of their own social customs, so long as higher Islamic moral principles are not violated. In the spread of Islam, the principle of 'urf, or existing custom was important. There are a lot of Quranic verses where people are instructed to do things, for example, the payment of wetnurses, "bil ma'roof," that is, according to what is customary. What is customary? Well, it depends on the time and place. Just as the prophet kept much of the existing social customs, as Islam spread, it was understood by scholars that people have a great deal of flexibility to decide how to live their lives, and neutral or positive existing customs were kept. Similarly, it was understood that evolving customs that did not go against higher Islamic values and which did not try to add obligatory new things to the religion were acceptable.

Now as for whether polygamy stays or goes and whether there should be fatwas or whether such fatwas would be legitimate is beside the point. The scholars will not directly decide this. The people, in the sum of their individual decisions, will shape the 'urf, the custom. Scholars can debate about the virtues of polygamy and whether it is permissible or not, but if 99.9% of the men in point of fact can't afford it and don't want the hassle, and 99.9% of the women, when it comes down to it, don't want their husbands taking second wives, and start to put clauses in their marriage contracts that the husband, at pain of divorce, cannot marry a second without her written permission the point is rather moot, isn't it? See also the notion of wives needing permission to go out of the house, or needing the husband's permission to divorce. If it becomes a custom that pretty much all women work around this and put clauses in the marriage contract to guarantee their freedom of movement and right to divorce, then the maraja will either be shamed into recognizing the rights to free movement and divorce for women, clause or no clause, or risk admitting their own irrelevance.
See also the conservative notion that men and women should have little to no contact with each other before permanent marriage and that there is no dating. Eventually, due to the onslaught of the modern lifestyle, it will be virtually inevitable that some form of dating-like courtship will become normal even within the Muslim community. God willing within the structured constraint of the Islamic institution of muta’a, if community leaders have the maturity and foresight to encourage Islamically acceptable routes to their children staying sane. But the trends are leading in a certain direction, and one way or another, something will give.

Great post kadhim. Kudos!
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#223 Marbles

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Posted 03 October 2009 - 03:43 AM

TRANSLATION of the first, second is pretty much the same:

It is not permissible to have sexual intercourse with one's wife that hasn’t reached nine years of age, be it permanent or temporary marriage. But there is no problem with all other pleasures such as lustful touch, embracing, and rubbing again the thighs, even with a suckling infant. If he does have sexual intercourse before nine years of age and does not penetrate, there is no penalty, but he has committed a sin. If he does penetrate causing the vagina and urethra openings to be one, she will become forever haram for him. Although this is as a precautionary measure. And it is more probable that her status as his wife is not removed. And the rulings of inheritance, and the prohibition of a fifth wife or marriage to her sister applies. He is also responsible for her maintenance as long as she is alive, even if he divorces her and even if she marries someone else after his divorcing her as a precautionary measure. And he is liable for blood money for the penetration and the amount is equivalent to that of an individual. If she is a free-woman, the amount is half that of a man, plus the dowry that she became entitled to through the 3aqd and penetration. If he penetrates his wife after the age of nine (causing the same damage as quoted above) , she does not become haram to him and there is no evidence that blood money is liable, but as a precautionary measure, he should maintain her as long as she is alive, although it is more probable that this is not obligatory.


Not talking about polygyny but I will have to agree with Marbles and kadhim that it is time some laws are changed.


http://www.shiachat....post__p__810186

Now that is seriously sick [sicker than the rest of the ruling, actually]. He messes her up and "it is more probable" that maintaining her isn't obligatory for him.

EDIT: I was searching for something else and came across this ruling and I think it's pretty relevant to the discussion that was taking place.

Just see how this particular, oft discussed - and dare I say sick - ruling revolves around the obligations of the man if he messes up with a poor 'child wife.' No thought is given to the immorality of the act except for a mechanical clause where he is supposed to pay blood money/maintenance for life for forced sex, or, rape, if you will. There is no penalty on him, no punishment, nothing.

For the text in red, see the following thread. Performing of sexual acts, other than penetration, on a 'baby-wife' of less than 9 is sanctioned in the jurisprudence and extensively debated. Not to mention when she crosses the benchmark of 9 lunar years. As we have seen, it is perfectly fine to sleep with a 9+ year old 'wife.' Apparently that wouldn't make a case of paedophilia.

http://www.shiachat....marriage-fatwa/

None of this has anything to do with polygamy. As it stands, polygyny is so less important a matter compared to, what I like to call, legal paedophilia among Muslims. But that doesn't seem to bother many here.

#224 Marbles

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Posted 03 October 2009 - 04:21 AM

Salams,

Sister, there are a couple of different issues here that I think should really be addressed seperately in order to understand the context and effect of this fatawa. I understand completely(I wish I could go into more detail but I can't) how this fatwa makes you feel and I feel the same way. It is apparently incomprehensible how a marja taqleed could basically justify child molestation. There are a couple of questions I have about this fatwa that are OT for this topic, but since I think it has basically run it's course and is already far OT in it's current state, Oh well.

First, Has this fatwa been authenticated to come from Sayyid Sistani himself or just from his office? As you know, there are many people who speak all kinds of nonsense in the name of a marjaa and then are denounced once there statements reach the marjaa himself. Also, the enemies of Ahl Al Bayt post alot of fake fatwa which need to be authenticated before they can be discussed. BTW, the links you posted to the source for this fatwa is not working.Sayyid Sistani's site is sistani.org not seestani.com.

Second, let's suppose it is authentic and from him directly (which has not at all been established in my mind). We then have to look at this fatwa in the general context of what marriage actually is all about in the Islamic context. From every (authentic) thing that I have read, marriage is a voluntary agreement between sane adults. A precondition for intimate contact between a male and female in the context of Islam is marriage and a precondition for marriage is always maturity (balghat). A girl who has not yet reached maturity cannot enter into a marriage contract and is thus unmarried and thus cannot have intimate contact with a man (any intimate contact including touching, etc). So if you see hundreds of fatwa that make maturity a precondition for marriage and one that doesn't, you should question the one(this one) and not the hundreds.

So it seems hasty to me to equate polygamy (which is in the Quran and is Sunnat of the Prophet(p.b.u.h) and Imams(a.s)) with immature marriage.
One has a very solid basis in Islam and the other has a very questionable basis. If you look at it from a practical angle, you have to admit that there are many women who have benefited from a polygamous relationship (by getting spiritual, emotional, and even financial support from a husband that may have otherwise not been available to them) and none that have benefited from immature marriage.

I don't understand. You are, like Whizbee, me and others, repelled by this rotten smelling ruling but, interestingly, first you doubt the whole thing altogether and entertain the possibility of it being totally fake. When it is shown that it is not, my brother, you go at lengths to rationalise this ruling, sometimes raising objections on the translations of the original Arabic and at times, doubting the 'real' meaning of the terms like baligh, minor, child etc. In fact, there is little room for an alternative interpretation.

I'm glad your 'aalim father-in-law doesn't believe that a na-baligh - less than 9 - can be married off. I am sure he has his reasons, and so had Shaykh Lankarani who supposedly held that na-balighs ( age 9 or less) can't be married off. This, by no means, alters the fact that MOST of the scholars do not find anything wrong with marrying off a girl of less than 9 and have stated it clearly in their risaalahs. This is only about 'na-balighs' of age less than 9, not to mention girls who are 10 or over.

Let me make it clear that I am using traditional jurisprudential definitions of baloogh, which is 9 years for girls. So, a girl less than 9 is na-baligh, 9+ is baligh.

I'm not getting into the socio-historical reasons whereby marriage of child girls or even of girls over 9 was allowed. But to tick mark this practice, today, as non-objectionable is highly objectionable.

Edited by Marbles, 03 October 2009 - 04:25 AM.

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