Temporary marriage was legislated for woman’s welfare
Temporary marriage is a divine mercy that Allah has endowed on His servants. It is for the welfare of men and women with no difference. However and as we have said before, men have absolute freedom and they can enjoy themselves in the public places that are founded for this purpose and protected by the law. Moreover, men have the right to marry two, three or four wives at the same time; therefore, sexual pleasure is available to them wherever and whenever they like.
On this basis, I can deduce that temporary marriage which Allah has permitted, is to make the rights of a woman to be equal to the rights of a man in this aspect, because this kind of marriage does not prevent woman from getting married to more than one man and even to many if she observes the iddah and the other conditions of this marriage. The only difference between man and woman in this regard is that man can get married to four women at the same time, but woman cannot get married even to two men at the same time. This is because of the reason that we have mentioned before that there is a possibility that the sperms of two men may gather in the womb of one woman, and then it is not known which man is the father of the child created in the woman’s womb, whereas this is impossible for the man who has many wives.
This is the rule of Allah that we find even in tame animals that live with us. If we put a ewe with two rams, there shall be a bloody quarrel leading to the death of one of them. If we suppose that both rams copulate with the ewe, then we are not certain which of them impregnates the ewe. If we put one ram with a herd of ewes, there shall be no quarrel, and we are certain that all the born sheep are children of that ram. What we say about rams and ewes can be said about hens and cockerel, rabbits, camels, cows, goats…etc. Allah says:
There is no animal that walks upon the earth or a bird that flies with its two wings but (they are) genera like yourselves. Qur'an, 6:38
Once, someone said to me, “If the matter is so, then a sterile woman can get married to two men at the same time, because the cause has fallen off.”1
I said, “This is not possible, because the Islamic rulings are not limited to causes that when a cause has fallen off, the ruling is annulled. If we say that the cause of the prohibition of wine is the loss of one’s reason where Allah says,
“O you who believe, do not go near prayer when you are intoxicated until you know (well) what you say,” Qur'an, 4:34,
Then, is the one who is not intoxicated after drinking a cup or two of wine, not subject to this ruling?
Certainly not, O my friend! That substance whose much quantity causes intoxication, the little of it (even one drop) is also unlawful.
And if we say that the cause of the prohibition of pig is impurity and filthiness, then will eating its meat be lawful when it is sterilized and all microbes are removed!?
The rulings of Allah do not rely on only one cause. There may be many causes that no one knows except Allah the Almighty. Therefore, we must be satisfied with the rulings of Allah and accept them willingly and submissively, because Allah does not want for His people except what brings them good and prosperity. Allah says:
Is it then the judgment of (the times of) ignorance that they desire? And who is better than Allah to judge for a people who are sure? Qur'an, 5:50,
That is Allah’s judgment; He judges between you and Allah is Knowing, Wise. Qur'an, 60:10
Therefore, Muslims have to be submissive and obedient.
It behaves not a believing man and a believing woman that they should have any choice in their matter when Allah and His Messenger have decided a matter; and whoever disobeys Allah and His Messenger, he surely strays off a manifest straying. Qur'an, 33:36
On this basis, believing men and believing women have to accept the decree of Allah concerning the matter of temporary marriage and to thank Him for this mercy, especially woman whom Allah has given through this marriage all the rights, whereas man only has the right to accept or not.
In the continuous marriage, man has “the right of bed” that whenever he asks her wife to sleep with, she has no right to refuse. A husband has the right to sleep with his wife whenever he likes. She even has no right, legally, to fast recommendable fasting (not even in Ramadan) except by his permission. Allah says:
Your wives are a tilth for you, so go into your tilth whenever you like. Qur'an, 2:223
Man has also been given the right to divorce his wife. Allah says:
O Prophet! when you divorce women, divorce them for their prescribed time (iddah). Qur'an, 65:1
Man also has been given the right to return his wife (to marital life) before the end of the iddah. Allah says:
Their husbands have a better right to take them back in the meanwhile if they wish for reconciliation. Qur'an, 2:228
Man has the right too to divorce his wife three times (trio-divorce). Allah says:
Divorce may be (pronounced) twice, then keep (them) in good fellowship or let (them) go with kindness…and if he divorces her (for third time), she shall not be lawful to him afterwards. Qur'an, 2:229-230
Man has been given the right to marry more than one wife (at the same time). Allah says:
Then, marry women as seems good to you, two and three and four. Qur'an, 4:3
However, in temporary marriage everything is in the hand of woman; she is the one to decide. She recites the wording of the marriage contract, and man only accepts or refuses. Woman is the one who determines the period of this marriage, and consequently determines her divorce with no condition or tie. She has the right to put any condition she likes against man. She may say to the husband, for example: On condition that you do not leave me all this time and do not marry other than me. Or she may say: on condition that you do not have sexual intercourse with me, or on condition of sexual intercourse but to ejaculate out of the womb lest I bear. Or she may say: on condition that we spend the honey-moon in Holy Mecca.
In temporary marriage, woman can stipulate whatever she likes. Allah says:
Then as to those of whom you seek content (by marrying them), give them their dowries as appointed; and there is no blame on you about what you mutually agree after what is appointed; surely Allah is Knowing, Wise. Qur'an, 4:24
It suffices woman as honor that she can marry herself in temporary marriage without the permission of her guardian (her father for example). In another word, it is woman who gets married to man in this kind of marriage.
- 1. The matter is not material only. Today, science shows us a quick result whether there is pregnancy or not, but the matter is related to moral and spiritual things; the material purity of the womb is not the basis. For example, the woman, whose husband divorces her after he has not slept with her for a long time that may be years for some reasons, has to undergo the iddah since the first moment of divorce.