Q: I love my husband madly and he is perfectly happy with me. When he went away for work and I was waiting to join him, I began to miss him and could not rest until he spoke to me. Although I do my religious duties, I feel something lacking when he is not here. What do you advise me to do so that I can be patient until I see him?
A: Praise be to Allaah.
It is wonderful to see Muslim homes that are filled with love and compassion. When we see that love and compassion between the spouses in particular, we are very happy about it, because that love and compassion will have a good effect on the family members. One of the greatest signs of Allah is that He created woman from man and it is a sign of His wisdom that He created woman to be a course of comfort and tranquillity for the man. Allah, may He be exalted, mentioned that with regard to Adam and Hawwa’, and all people in general, as He says (interpretation of the meaning):
“It is He Who has created you from a single person (Adam), and (then) He has created from him his wife (Hawwa (Eve)), in order that he might enjoy the pleasure of living with her”
This has to do with Adam and Eve. With regard to humanity in general, Allah, may He be exalted, says (interpretation of the meaning):
“And among His Signs is this, that He created for you wives from among yourselves, that you may find repose in them”
And Allah, may He be exalted, created love and compassion between the spouses, as He says at the end of the verse from Soorat ar-Room quoted above (interpretation of the meaning):
“…and He has put between you affection and mercy. Verily, in that are indeed signs for a people who reflect”
Ash-Shanqeeti (may Allah have mercy on him) said:
Allah, may He be exalted, says: “and (then) He has created from him his wife (Hawwa (Eve)), in order that he might enjoy the pleasure of living with her”
In this verse we see that Allah created Hawwa’ from Adam so that he might enjoy the pleasure of living with her, i.e., find comfort in her. Elsewhere Allah said that He created the spouses of Adam’s offspring likewise. That is the verse in which Allah says (interpretation of the meaning):
“And among His Signs is this, that He created for you wives from among yourselves, that you may find repose in them, and He has put between you affection and mercy.”
Adwa’ al-Bayaan, 2/304, 305
Ibn Katheer (may Allah have mercy on him) said:
There is no love between any two souls greater than that that exists between the spouses.
Tafseer Ibn Katheer, 3/525
But we do not mean that the love should be “mad” or “crazy” as people say. Rather it should be moderate and appropriate. Zayd ibn Aslam narrated that his father said: ‘Umar ibn al-Khattab said to me: O Aslam, do not let your love (for anyone) be obsessive and do not let your hatred (of anyone) be destructive.
I said: How is that?
He said: When you love, do not go to a level of obsession as a child does with the thing he loves, and when you hate, do not hate in such a way that you want your opponent to be destroyed and doomed.
Narrated by ‘Abd ar-Razzaaq in al-Musannaf, 20269; its isnaad is saheeh.
The Rightly-Guided Caliph (‘Umar ibn al-Khattaab) gave this advice because obsessiveness in love (loving madly) has negative effects on the one who loves and the one who is loved. Its effects on the one who loves are:
(a) His thoughts are focused on his beloved, which causes him anxiety and tension, and this distraction causes him to waste time and leads to mental and physical illness
(b) Another of the effects of loving madly is that it makes the one who loves turn a blind eye to any shortcomings in his beloved’s performance of duties and to his committing any haraam actions. And if his beloved asks him to join him in his actions, then his insane love will lead him to do so.
(c) Another of the negative effects of this love is that it dominates his heart in such a way that there is no room for love of Allah and His Messenger, which is the means of his salvation, let alone love for anyone else such as family and children
(d) Another of the negative effects is that the one who is madly in love cannot cope with the absence or illness of his beloved, let alone his death!
The negative effects of insane love on the one who is loved include the following:
(a) He may suffer tension because of the lover’s insistence on seeing him and sitting with him, which may lead to his neglecting his work or falling short in tasks on which he should focus his mind and heart, such as seeking beneficial knowledge and doing righteous deeds.
(b) Another of the negative effects it may have on him is that he will never find this lover offering him sincere advice; rather he will turn a blind eye to his mistakes and shortcomings. As it is said, your love of a thing makes you blind and deaf!
(c) Another of its negative effects is that if he responds to the one who loves him, he will waste his time with him, and if he does not, he will cause him anxiety, which may lead him to hate him in the end.
Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah (may Allah have mercy on him) said:
If a man’s heart is attached to a woman, even if she is permissible for him, he will remain captive to her and she will be able to control him as she wishes. Outwardly he will appear to be her master because he is her husband, but in reality he is her captive and slave, especially if she realises his need for her and his love for her, and that he cannot find any alternative to her. In that case she will have control over him like an unjust, domineering master over his weak slave who cannot free himself from him, or even worse! Because captivity of the heart is worse than physical captivity and enslavement of the heart is worse than enslavement of the body. The one whose body is enslaved will not care if his heart is free and at peace; rather he may be able to find away to freedom. But if the heart that is in control of the body is that is enslaved and infatuated with something other than Allah, then this is true humiliation, the worst kind of captivity and enslavement to that which enslaved the heart. … True freedom is freedom of the heart and true enslavement is enslavement of the heart, just as true richness is richness of the soul. The Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) said: “Richness is not having a great deal of accumulated wealth; rather richness is richness of the soul.” This applies if what has captured his heart is something permissible; as for the one whose heart is enslaved by something haraam, such as a woman or boy, this is pain and suffering from which there is no way out, and these are the people whose suffering will be the worst and their reward will be the least, for if a person’s heart is devoted to something and remains attached and enslaved to it, then this will cause him all kinds of evil and corruption that cannot be enumerated except by the Lord of mankind, even if he manages to avoid committing the greater act of immorality.
End quote from Majmoo‘ al-Fataawa, 10/185-186
We are very happy to hear of your honouring your husband and of your love for him, but we would be even happier if you made your love for him reasonable. You should understand that bothering your husband, always calling him, or insisting that he stay at home or not undertake a particular trip will all cause him stress and make it difficult for him to get on with different tasks in life. We want there to be in your house a healthy atmosphere of love that could help the family and future children, in sha Allah, to achieve high goals and to strive to support His religion and be a help to His righteous slaves.
What we also advise you to do is:
(a) Fulfil the religious duties that are required of you and do naafil acts of worship too.
(b) Regularly recite the adhkaar of the morning and the evening
(c) Seek knowledge by reading or listening
(d) Call women among your neighbours and relatives to Allah
(e) Try to have shar‘i love in your heart towards Allah and His Messenger (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) by following the commands, heeding the prohibitions, loving the religion of Allah, defending it and spreading it among people, and having natural love towards your parents and children.
All of that will give a meaning to your life that is more sublime than devoting your life only to your husband and loving him only.
We ask Allah, may He be exalted, to help you to do that which He loves and which pleases Him, and to make the love and compassion between you lasting and to bless you with righteous offspring,
And Allah is the source of strength.