Did Hz. Aisha raise her voice at the Prophet?

The Details of the Question

- Are there such narrations? If yes, are they sound? How should we understand them?
1) According to a narration, the Prophet (pbuh) said, “O Allah! If I swear at any believer, make him close to me on the Day of Judgment in return for it." (It is said that it is included in Abu Dawud, 4/327; and Ahmad 3/306.)
2) According to a narration, Hz. Umar said, “If any of you cannot find a place for prostration on Friday, he should prostrate on the back of his brother. (al-Musannaf, Vol. 2, page: 114: Maktabatur-Rushd)
3) According to a narration, Hz. Abu Bakr asked permission to visit the Prophet and heard Hz. Aisha shouting. She said, “By Allah! I know that Ali and Fatima are more beloved to you than me and my gather" She repeated it twice or thrice. Hz. Abu Bakr entered the room and said, “O daughter of such and such a person! Do not raise your voice at the Messenger of Allah (pbuh) again." (Haythami, Majmauz-Zawaid, Vol. 9, pp. 201-202. Darul Kitabul Arabi, Beirut Lebanon, Maktabatul Quds, Cairo)

The Answer

Dear Brother / Sister,

This news, which shows a scene from the family life of the Prophet, gives us some idea about how he treated his wives and indicates his earnest and soft character. A discussion that can take place in any family is in question here. The Messenger of Allah reacted to the complaints of his young wife maturely and he prevented her father, who heard her, from acting harshly; then, he wanted to eliminate the problem by joking.

The harsh attitude of Hz. Abubakr at that time was definitely a result of his deep love and respect to the Prophet and is based on the worry that Hz. Aisha might have distressed the Messenger of Allah.

After this information, let us try to answer the questions one by one:

1) The narration regarding the issue is as follows:

“O Allah! If I abuse a believer, please let that be a means of bringing him near to You on the Day of Judgment.” (Bukhari, Daawat, 34; Muslim, Birr, 88, 89 etc.; Darimi, Riqaq, 53; Ibn Hanbal, 3/390)

The hadith is sound.

It does not mean that the Prophet (pbuh) abused people. He wants Allah to reward a person whom he may have abused even once as a human being in return for it. It is an indication of how delicate and compassionate he is.

2) See Abdurrazzaq, al-Musannaf, h. no: 1556; 1557 for the hadith in question.

Bayhaqi also reported the hadith with a sound chain of narrators. (see Bayhaqi, as-Sunanul-Kubra, h. no: 5629, 5630)

Acting upon that hadith narration, Hanafi, Shafii and Maliki scholars state that if there are too many people in a congregational prayer, a person can prostrate on the back of the person in front of him and he does not have to ask for permission from him. (see W. Zuhayli, al-Fiqhul-Islami, 2/1330)

What is essential in prostration is that the organs of sajdah except knees are to touch the ground/floor that the feet stand on during prayer naked but when it is necessary, it is permissible to prostrate;

- on a turban wrapped around the head,
- on a place a bit higher than the ground/floor,
- on the back of the person in the rank in front due to lack of space,
- on a cotton or woolen cloth that will not prevent the hardness of the ground/floor from being felt and on a piece of stone with a large surface.

It is permissible to prostrate on the fingers or on a cloth in order to protect oneself from the heat or cold of the ground/floor.

3) The hadith was reported by Abu Dawud but neither Hz. Ali nor Hz. Fatima is mentioned in it. (see Abu Dawud, Adab, 84, h. no: 4999)

Ahmad b. Hanbal also narrated the hadith. However, only the following statement exists in it: “Ali is more beloved to you than my father.” (see Ibn Hanbal, h. no: 18421)

Hafiz Haythami states that this narration is sound. (see Majmauz-Zawaid, 9/ 201-202)

Hz. Aisha is the most beloved wife of the Prophet (pbuh). It is possible for her to raise her voice due to her coyness because she thinks only her husband, who loves her most, is there.

Besides, there are various levels of “raising the voice”. The phrase raising the voice is used even for a slightly loud voice. 

The following statement exists in the narration reported by Abu Dawud:

“Hz. Abubakr tried to beat his daughter due to his anger but the Prophet (pbuh) prevented him. Hz. Abubakr went out angrily. Thereupon, the Prophet (pbuh) said to Hz. Aisha, ‘I have protected you from the man.’

The last statement of the Prophet (pbuh) shows that he was not angry with his wife. Thus, what we need to do when we hear things like that is not to show disrespect.  

That the Prophet (pbuh) said to Hz. Aisha, ‘I have protected you from the man’ instead of ‘I have protected you from your father’ was a joke but it also expresses the following fact: Hz. Abu Bakr is a mature man who gets furious for Allah and His Messenger; the unerring criteria of real manliness is to love someone for Allah and His Messenger and to get angry with someone for Allah and His Messenger.

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