Over the last few months many of us have attended a wedding, either a family member, friend, neighbour or just someone our parents know.
But as times move on, weddings are getting more and more extravagant with people spending soo much on the wedding that they can actually buy a small house with the savings they make if they cut down just some of the extravagance. So this khutbah is a small reminder or what an Islamic marriage actually is and what we should be thinking about when planning one.
Nikāh is a Sunnah of all the Prophets and in particular a Sunnah of Rasulullah Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam.
Nikāh is a great form of worship and it is a means of attaining piety, reward and closeness to Allah Ta’ala.
It is narrated on the authority of Aishah Radhi Allahu Anha that Rasulullah Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam said, “Nikah is from amongst my Sunnah, and whosoever does not follow my Sunnah, is not from me. [Ibn Majah 1/592].
In principle, an ibādah (worship) should be performed with sincerity and strictly according to the commandments of Shari῾ah and the Sunnah of Rasulullah Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam.
The procedure of Nikāh is very simple. It is performed with a proposal (Iejāb) by the male or female and acceptance (Qubool) by the male or female in the past tense and in the presence of at least two male Muslim witnesses or one male witness and two female witnesses.
It is Sunnah that the marriage be announced and performed in the Masjid and the bride is represented by her Mahram (Unmarriageable relative like father, brother, etc.). The bride gives consent to her representative (Wakeel) in the presence of two witnesses to perform her marriage in the Masjid.
At the Masjid, the Wakeel represents the bride in the presence of the two witnesses and the stipulated dowry.
After consummating the marriage, to do walimah is Sunnah and it holds within great reward.
It is most unfortunate that today many marriages are void of barakah (divine blessings). There is so much turbulence and grief in marriages. One of the major contributing factors to that is extravagance in our marriages. Travelling to far place just so that the color of the toothpick matches the tablecloth, wedding cards, mehendi ceremonies, visiting beauty parlors, great expense in decorating the hall, many thousands of pounds spent on photography and video, dance routines performed my women in front other ghair mahram people etc. are some of the many unislamic practices that have crept in our marriages.
In aping Western methods sheepishly, Muslims have adopted many disagreeable customs, innovations and forbidden practices associated with wedding which are un-Islamic and frowned upon. Some are mentioned hereunder:
1. It is totally un-Islamic for those, who do not possess the means, to incur debts in order to have grandiose weddings.
2. It is fallacy to think that one’s respect will be lost if one does not hold an extravagant wedding and invite many people.
3. The present day practice of intermingling of the genders is an act of sin and against Shari῾ah.
4. Customs which are contrary to the teachings and the laws of Shari῾ah are prohibited.
5. Great care must be taken as regards to Salāh on occasions of marriage by all – the bride, the bridegroom and all the participants.
6. The unnecessary expenses incurred by the bride’s family in holding a feast have no basis in Shari῾ah.
7. In Walimah whatever is easily available should be fed to the people and care should be taken that there is no extravagance, ostentation and that no debts are incurred in the process.
After observing the life of Rasulullah Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam, we come to a conclusion that Rasulullah Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam lived a very simple and down to earth life. His marriage was simple, also was the marriage of Rasulullah Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam’s beloved daughter.
A person needs to take a practical approach to how much they spend and what practices they follow on the actual wedding. Everyone is trying to outdo each other and as a result our weddings nowadays do not resemble the weddings of the past. If Allah SWT has blessed you with money, even then one should try to avoid israaf (excessive wasteful spending). The best example is that of Nabi SAW and that is the way where we will get the real Blessings in our marriage. May Allah SWT help make Nabi SAW a living example for all of us again.