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Articles and Essays on Marriage and Family in Islam


Tawhidic Framework for Family Life:
Reflections on Islamic Texts

By Zeenath Kausar

(Editor's Note: It appears that this article was scanned from a printed text of the Muslim Education Quarterly, and the scanner had some trouble with the character recognition. I had to do a lot of reconstructive work to put it in order. The placement of the footnotes in the text was entirely lost. However, the article makes many good points and is definitely worth reading. )


The family is the basic unit of human civilization. It is the first institution where husband and wife learn how to live peacefully through mutual understandsing and mutual concern for each other. It is the first institution where children learn how to share and care for each other, how to respect elders and how to show affection to the young. Family is the institution which also disciplines the sexual urge of a man and a woman and teaches them how to satisfy their sexual instinct in a responsible manner. Family is also the only legitimate institution for procreation without which either the human race would be extinct or human beings would be reproduced in an illegitimate way.

But at the present time, the family is under fatal attack by a few modern and post-modern feminists. Hence in this paper an attempt is made to present the Islamic stance on sexuality, reproduction and family life. It is argued that Islam perceives sexuality, marriage, reproduction and family life as indispensable to the Islamic way of life which is anchored on the Islamic principles of Tawhid (monotheism).

Life an Integrated Whole

Islam, which implies willing and complete submission to Allah, is the complete way of life. It embraces all aspects of life-sexual, reproductive, marital and familial. It underlines two important points: firstly, that Islam perceives life as an integrated whole and for this reason sexuality and reproduction are parts of the Islamic system of life, not outside it; secondly, Islam - which is a Divinely ordained system of life - possesses Divine injunctions and regulations in its texts - the Qur'an and the Prophetic traditions - for the regulation of sexuality, reproduction and all that are related to these.

The Islamic philosophy of Tawhid integrates all aspects of life. Tawhid implies unity of God, unity of the prophets, unity of life, unity of mankind, unity of the purpose of creation, unity of knowledge, etc. The fundamental beliefs that there is no God except Allah and that the Prophet Muhammad is the last messenger of Allah for the whole mankind; that we have to follow Allah's ordained way of life (Islam) to be successful here and in the hereafter (akhirah); and that in Allah vests judgements of rewards and punishments in the akhirah are all the principles of Tawhid. Hence, questions on 'sexuality' and 'reproduction' are also anchored on the Tawhidic paradigm.

Vicegerency: the Purpose of Life

The very raison d'etre of the creation of man, according to the Qur'an, is the performance of the vicegerency of Allah. The Qur'an says:

Behold, thy Lord said to the angels: I will create a vicegerent on earth..

Hence, any thought and activity of man in Islam, be that sexual or reproductive, should be ultimately related to this purpose of life-vicegerency of Allah.

Sexuality and Reproduction

With this brief background, it is easier now to look into the Islamic texts on sexuality and reproduction. Sexuality in Islam is not trivialised as man's animalistic functions to be tackled by his own whims and fancies. Sexuality is perceived as one of the essential aspects of man's life, to be regulated and disciplined through proper guidance. A man and a woman in Islam can enter into sexual relationships only after marriage which is considered as a "sign" of Allah and the ways of the prophets. The Qur'an says:

And among His Signs Is this, that He created mates from among yourselves, that ye may Dwell in tranquility with them.

We indeed sent messengers before you (0 Muhammad) and we assigned them wives and children.

It implies that in Islam, the very basis of marital relationships between husband and wife through which they can engage in sexual activities is their nature as Divinely-created beings. Furthermore, this 'love' is already implanted in husband and wife each other by Allah so that they may live in peace and harmony. The Islamic attitude towards sexuality goes entirely against the mere ravings in man/woman and its satisfaction through illegitimate ways. In Islam it is 'love' and a strong covenant (nikah) - and not 'force' or temporary arrangements outside marriage or cohabitation that unite a man and a woman. For this reason all types of pre-martial and extra-marital relationships, fornication, and abnormal sexual activities are strongly condemned in Islam. The Qur'an says:

Nor come nigh to adultery: for it is a shameful (deed) and an evil, opening the road (to other evils).

Islam thus makes a distinction between sexuality that is constrained and disciplined through marital relationships, and sexuality which transgresses the bounds of moral and spiritual values. Islam does not overlook the sexual drive in man but institutionalises it through marriage to protect man from immorality.

The Prophet Muhanunad (p.b.u.h.) said:

0 young men! Those among you who can support a wife should marry, for it restrains eyes from casting (evil glances) and preserves one from immorality.

As sexuality outside marriage is illegitimate, marriage without the proper consent of marriage partners is also invalid. The Prophet Muhanunad (p.b.u.h.) said:

A widow shall not be married until she be consulted, nor shall a virgin be married until her consent be asked... and if she refuses, she shall not be married by force.'

Therefore, marriage in Islam is neither an imprisonment for woman that is forced upon her as a punishment, nor enslavement that makes her subservient to man. Marriage is a covenant of faith and consent, and a bond of love and concern. Marital relationships, where sex plays a most important role, are to be guided by moral and spiritual values. Husband and wife complement each other since the husband provides protection and economic support to his wife and his wife guards her chastity and her husband's possessions as her moral obligations. The Qur'an says:

Men are the protectors And maintainers of women, Because Allah has given the one more (strength) than the other, and because they support them from their means. Therefore the righteous women Are devoutly obedient, and guard in (the husband's) absence what Allah would have them guard.

Thus, husband and wife in Islarn complement each other and do not compete against each other for domination and supremacy. They are friends and partners in their role as vicegerents of Allah. Both have rights and duties towards each other and both have obligations to Allah. This is very clearly stated in the Qur'anic verse which proclaims equality in the very creation of man and woman, pointing out their creation from a single soul:

O mankind, be conscious of your duty to your Lord, Who created you from a single soul, and created of like nature his mate, and from the two created and spread many men and women; and be mindful of your duty to Allah in Whose name you appeal to one another and to (the ties of) the womb. Verily Allah watches over you.

Even if sexual satisfaction is gained by man and woman while being mindful of its etiquette as ordained in the Qur'an and Sunnah, it is regarded as worship ('ibadah) and charity (sadaqah). The Prophet Muhammad (p.b.u.h.) said:

Did Allah not make for you that from which you can give sadaqah? Verily for every time you say Subhan Allah, there is a sadaqah and for every time you say Allahu Akbar there is a sadaqah and for every time you say La ilaha illa'llah there is a sadaqah and for every time you say Alhamdulillah, there is a sadaqah and in every act of enjoining what is right there is sadaqah and in every act of forbidding evil there is a sadaqah and in your sexual relations there is a sadaqah.

Thereupon the companions asked: O Messenger of Allah! Is there a reward for one of us when he satisfies his sexual desire? The Prophet replied: Don't you think, if he had satisfied it with the forbidden there would have been a sin upon him?

The companions said 'yes'.

The Prophet (p.b.u.h.) then said: In the same way when he satisfies it with that which is lawful, there is for him in that a reward.

Thus, sexuality is never perceived in Islam as a mere carnal desire of man to be fulfilled in any way as he pleases. Instead men are ordained to follow certain etiquette in their sexual relationships so that they should remember Allah even before this act and do not fall prey to the Satanic trap. This can be easily gleaned through a careful reading of a few Prophetic traditions on these matters.

It is stated that the husband should place his hand on the forelock of his wife at the time of consummating the marriage and pray for Allah's blessings. The Prophet Muhammad (p.b.u.h.) said:

When any of you marries a woman he should hold her forelock, mention Allah the most high, and pray for His blessings, saying O Allah, 1 ask You for the good in her and the good with which You have created her, and I seek refuge in You from the evil in her and the evil with which You have created her.

Furthermore, according to some other traditions, it is desirable that the husband presents to his wife something to drink to show kindness to her and to offer prayer together to remain close ever after for the good and seek refuge in Allah from the evil. It is also evidenced from several traditions that it is commendable to perform 'wudu' (ablution) after sex before one goes to sleep, and it is obligatory to take a bath after sex in order to attain ritual purity.

It is quite obvious from the above discussion that sexuality in Islam is neither perceived as an objective of life to be totally immersed in, with no other moral and spiritual considerations, nor a beastly act to be fulfilled through any means for its own sake.

Islam disciplines the sexual desire of man and also expects him to remember Allah even while joining his wife for sex. Islam also tells him to pray to Allah to protect the child from evil, if a child is granted as a result of the union, as is clear from the following prayer and Prophetic tradition:

In the name of Allah, O Allah, keep us away from the devil, and keep the devil away from that which You may grant us (offspring).

The Prophet Muhammad (p.b.u.h.) said:

After that, if Allah decrees that they will have a child, the devil will never be able to harm that child.

It also implies that Islam not only enjoins man to remember Allah before his sexual relationship but also makes him conscious of his responsibility towards his prospective child to protect him from the Shaytan.

Family- Parents' Obligations Towards Children

Sexuality, reproduction and responsibility towards children are interconnected in Islam through the institution of family. Family is the first place where children are not only nurtured but also taught basic morals and etiquette so they can appreciate Islamic ethos and values. A stable family will give rise to a stable society and a stable civilization. All this requires that both parents and children should be mindful of their obligations towards each other along with their rights, so that they may love and respect each other. Islam enjoins its adherents to love children and to be mindful of their responsibilities towards them from their very inception and even earlier to it. The Qur'an says:

... and be mindful of your duty to Allah, in whose name you appeal to one another, and (be mindful of) the ties of the womb.

Thus, Islam emphasizes that parents should realise that the proper development of the child should begin from the mother's womb itself. Hence the parents should be concerned about their prospective child from the very beginning.

It is already proven scientifically that a pregnant woman should abstain from alcoholic liquors and narcotics and should also avoid tensions. If she fails to observe all these precautionary measures, complications may affect her own health and also the health of her child in the womb. It is also pointed out that the relationship between the prospective mother and the prospective father should not be conflict-ridden, as such conflict adversely affects the mental and physical health of the prospective mother and eventually the prospective child.

Islam commands its believers not only to take care of the physical upbringing of their children but also their educational, moral and spiritual development. The Qur'an says:

O you who believe, strive to protect yourselves and your wives and children from the fire.

Obviously, the best way of protecting children from the fire is through providing proper education and training. More than the wealth and material property, children badly require from their parents the best education for their real success here and in the hereafter. The Prophet Muhammad (p.b.u.h) said:

Of all that a father can give to his children, the best is good education and training.

In the contemporary age, where the Muslim Ummah is facing multitudes of intellectual challenges, the above Prophetic tradition needs greater focus. Unless children are brought up with proper education and skills, they become easily susceptible to alien cultures and lifestyles. The strong foundation of Islamic culture and civilization depends on sound education and training of the children. It is necessary for them to be well acquainted with the dominant ideologies as well as the comprehensive Islamic system of life so that they are able to become role models in the future, and to take care of the Ummatic responsibility vis-a-vis mankind. The Qur'an teaches us to pray to Allah for our children in these words:

My Lord help me keep the prayer and (also) let my offspring (do so). Our Lord accept my appeal! Our Lord forgive me and my parents. Our Lord! grant us in our spouses and our offspring the comfort of our eyes and make us a model for the needful.

It also implies that Islam completely rejects the perception of women and children as either a burden or an oppressed class. In fact, Islam requires men to look at their wives and children as comforters of their eyes and a source of joy, peace and solace - not as a suppressed and oppressed class to be dominated and overpowered. Man's domination of women and children goes against the very spirit of Islam which asserts that "command is only for Allah" not for man.

When a child is born, the Islamic clarion call that 'there is no God but Allah' is conveyed into his/her ears, which implies that he/she should submit to none save Allah. Besides this, it is also evident from one of the traditions that whenever a child in the household of the Prophet (p.b.u.h.) started speaking a little, the Prophet (p.b.u.h.) used to teach him or her the second verse of Surat al-Furqan which gives the message of Allah's sovereignty and Oneness. The translation of this verse is as follows:

Allah is He to Whom belongs The dominion of the heavens And the earth; no son Has He begotten, nor Has He A partner in His dominion. It is He Who created All things, and ordered them In due proportions.

Thus Islam emphasizes that children should be ingrained with the Tawhidic message and that they should willingly submit to none but Allah. It does not however mean that they are not expected to obey their parents, rather Islam enjoins children to be good to their parents which will be discussed later. Islam also encourages that both parents should express their utmost love to their children, give them time, play with them and cheer thern up through interacting with them in many ways. It is reported that an Amir who held a high position in the government during the reign of Khalifa 'Umar (may Allah be pleased with him) once visited the house of the Khalifa and was surprised to see that some children had mounted the chest of the Khalifa and were engaged in playing. Seeing the astonishment of Amir the Khalifa enquired about his treatment of his own children. Upon his reply the Khalifa said: "Amir, you are a follower of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) and yet are ignorant of the important injunction that a Muslim should behave towards his family members with extreme love and deep tenderness."

Islam is against the despotic and tyrannical attitude of the husband towards the wife. Islam expects from man a gentlemanly behaviour and not a harsh attitude towards his family. The Prophet (p.b.u.h.) said:

The best of you is he who is the best to his family, and I am the best to my family.

The relationship between man and woman in Islam is not therefore the relationship of master and servant but that of "garments" to each other and also of protecting friends of one another. The Qur'an says:

They are garments for you and you are garments for them.

Thus the very bases of family in Islain are faith, love, concern and care for each other so that it turns out to be a civilizing ground for children. A husband and wife who live in love and peace with each other can concentrate on their children's well-being and can bring them up with moral excellence, a good education and the best spiritual orientation. Such children would not only contribute their potentials towards the construction of society in the future, but will also remain as a blessing for their parents even after the death of their parents. Parents of such children will continue to enjoy the rewards of the education and training which they imparted to their children. The Prophet (p.b.u.h.) said:

The actions of a man cease with his death. But there are three deeds whose reward and blessing continue to reach him even after death: One is that he should make a sadaqah jariah (recurring charity); secondly, he should leave behind a legacy of knowledge from which people may continue to derive benefit; and the third is pious offspring who continuously invoke mercy of Allah upon him."

Children are blessings which Allah bestows upon parents. But if the children are not educated and trained properly, they become nuisance to the parents and the society. Whereas, if children are properly educated and trained, they shall become bearers of the Islamic mission, transmitters of Islamic culture in the society and also bring the best rewards to their deceased parents.

Islam forbids abortion and infanticide. The Qur'an says:

Slay not your children fearing poverty. We shall provide for them and you. Lo! the slaying of them is a great sin. Those who kill their children out of their foolishness are the greatest losers.

Thus, abortions, child abuse and infanticide are all considered as heinous sins in lslam. Islam by its very nature is against cruelty and barbarity. Any use of devices such as the contraception loop, shield, plastic or anything to cause abortion is forbidden. Even if abortion is done within seven days of conception, it is unlawful, since the fertilized ovum is going to be a human being. However, only on one condition is abortion allowed-to save the life of the mother.

It is also important to point out here that Islam is not against technology but the misuse of technology. For instance, if technological devices help mothers to lessen complications during prenatal period and childbirth, Islam has no objection and would in fact consider that to be commendable. But if the technological devices are used to help unmarried women or teenage girls to have babies if they wish to, Islam strongly objects to it. Similarly, Islam is against the production and use of contraceptive devices to help umnarried women or teenage girls engage in sexual relationships without becoming pregnant. Islain condemns the development of high-tech reproductive aids to produce 'artificial' mothers, 'artificial' fathers and 'artificial' children and also of technological devices by which lesbians and homosexuals can engage in perverted sexuality and also be able to get children. In fact Islam is totally against all deviant forms of sexuality. The Qur'an says:

Would you really approach men in your lusts rather than women? Nay, ye are a people (grossly) ignorant.

Islam no doubt encourages man to beget children, but through rightful means, not through any unlawful act. The Qur'an points out how Prophet Zakariyya (peace be upon him) prayed to Allah for the pious offspring even at a very old age:

Lord! Bestow upon me by Thy bounty goodly offspringLo! Thou art the Hearer of prayer.

As far as the invitro fertilization and test tube babies are concerned, Muslim scholars consider them lawful only if the ovum and the sperm come from a married couple and the embryo is transferred into the uterus of the wife herself. The use of the invitro fertilization by a woman or man who are not married to each other is not permitted in Islam.

The Islamic stance on artificial insemination is also quite clear. It forbids the use of the sperm of anyone other than that of the husband for artificial insemination. Such an act is tantamount to adultery, from the Islamic perspective, since it falls outside the marital union of a man and a woman.

Obligations of Children Towards their Parents

There is a reciprocity of rights and duties in Islam. While parents are enjoined to be mindful of their children for their overall development, children are also exhorted to be obedient and kind to their parents. Both parents and children have respective duties towards each other along with their rights. There are several Qur'anic verses and Prophetic traditions which throw light on the etiquette of children towards their parents. The Qur'an says:

Thy Lord hath decreed that ye worship none save Him and (that ye show) kindness to parents.

Islam thus ordains children to be kind and grateful to their parents. Good conduct towards parents is even regarded as a key to paradise. The Prophet (p.b.u.h.) said:

Your entry into Paradise or Hell depends on your good or bad conduct towards your parents.

Another tradition of the Prophet (p.b.u.h.) also highlights the necessity of fair treatment to parents by children:

Let that man be disgraced, and disgraced again, and let him be disgraced even more. The people enquired: "O Prophet of God (p.b.u.h.) who is that man?" The Prophet affirmed: "I refer to the man who finds his parents in old age - both of them or one of them - and yet did not earn entitlement to Paradise by rendering good service to them."

It seems also pertinent to point out here that although children are exhorted to be obedient and kind to both parents, a greater emphasis is given on better treatment and devotion to the mother. This is obviously because of her greater sacrifice and suffering for children. The Qur'an says:

And We have enjoined on man kindness to his Parents: In pain did his mother Bear hint, and in pain Did she give him birth. The carrying of the child To his weaning is A period of thirty months.

This is also illustrated through various Prophetic traditions, for example:

I enjoin man about his mother. I enjoin man about his mother. I enjoin man about his mother. I enjoin mean about his father.

Motherhood in Islam is not discarded as a burden, a stumbling block for woman's development, a source of oppression and suppression. It is looked upon with respect and honour and is considered as a blessing from Allah. Motherly affection and care are deemed indispensable for the proper upbringing of children along with the father's affection and concern.

Motherhood is regarded as an essential institution for human civilization. As discussed above, Islam attaches great importance to the mutual love and concern for each other in the family. As the father is asked to pray to Allah to make his wife and children comfort for his eyes, children are also exhorted to show glances of love and devotion to parents. The Prophet (p.b.u.h.) said:

"The pious offspring who casts a single look of affection at his parents receives a reward from God equal to the reward of an accepted hajj." The people submitted: "O Prophet of Allah (peace be upon you), if someone casts a hundred such glances of love and affection at his parents, what then?" The Prophet replied: "Yes, indeed, even if one does so a hundred times a day, he win get a hundredfold reward. God is far greater than you imagine and is completely free from petty narrow mindedness.

Children are also exhorted to pray for their parents:

O, our Lord! Grant forgiveness to me and my parents and pardon all the faithful on the day of Reckoning.


The main points from the above discussion can be summarised as follows:

Sexuality, reproduction and parent/children relationships in the family are all perceived in Islam as natural and essential aspects of man's life and are not separated from the whole Tawhidic framework of life and thought. Man is always reminded of Allah's guidance all through these relationships.

Sexual relationships and reproduction outside marriage are considered unlawful.

A loving, peaceful and harmonious relationship between husband and wife is greatly emphasized.

Man's domination and woman's subservience to man are completely rejected. Man and woman complement each other and are not against one other. The Islamic family system is based on mutual love among family members.

An affectionate, cordial, and deeper relationship between parents and children is strongly upheld in Islam. A stable family with caring parents and children is required for a better society and a healthier civilization.

We cannot, however, afford to be complacent about the Islamic view of sexuality, reproduction, husband-wife relationships and parent/child relationships without putting these theories into practice.

In some families men tend to keep a despotic attitude towards women and children, resulting in a big communication gap between the husband on one hand, and the wife and children on the other. Some men expect from women only the service of cleaning and taking care of the children. An open exchange of thoughts and discussion of any problems of the outside world, of the Muslim Ummah, or of any fields of knowledge is almost absent. Instead of a loving and caring environment in the household, a tense environment prevails because men usually distance themselves from the women and children as a mark of their artificial 'honor'. This sort of 'honor' sometimes even turns to be 'horror' for other family members and distorts the relationships among the members.

In some cases, women alone are expected to take over all the responsibilities of caring for the children, while the men are completely exempt from it. For better emotional upbringing of children, both mother and father are required to play important roles. In those families where women are hardly educated, it is all the more problematic for children to get a proper education. Whereas in some cases, where both parents are educated and young, again children become the victims since they do not get proper attention from their parents. Men claim that they are too busy, while women blame men for non-cooperation in household. These women often feel that they are overened with a double workload, and tend to neglect the children. Children feel alienated from both parents.

Due to a lack of mutual understanding and confidence, the relationships between husband and wife grow tense and soinefimes give rise to divorce. Children of divorced parents turn out to be aggressive and anti-social. Hence, in the contemporary age of sexual and familial crises, it seems imperative for the Islamic Ummah to strengthen the institution of family.


Notes & References

  1. For a comprehensive and convincing study on Islam as the complete way of life, see various books of Syed Abul Mawdudi such as Islamic Way of Life, Lahore, Islamic Publications, 1992; see also Let us be Muslims, Kuala Lumpur, The Islaniic Foundation, A. S. Noordeen, 1991. For a Contemporary perspective on Islam, see Muhammad Ahmedullah Siddiqi (ed.), Islam: A Contemporary Perspective, Chicago, NAAMPS Publication, 1994.
  2. See Ismail Raji al-Faruqi, Tawhid.. Its Implic£uions for Thought and Life, Herndon, HIT, 1982; Muhammad Nejatullah S:lddiqui Tawbid.. 1We Concept and the Process, in Khurshid Ahined and Zafar Ishaq Ansari (Ed), Islamic Perspectives: Studies in Honour of Sayed Abul Ala Mawdudi, Leicester, Islamic Foundation, 1979, pp. 17-33.
  3. A]-Qur'an 2:30; For a concrete understanding of the universal missionary role of a Muslim, see Sayed Abut Ala Mawdudi, Witness unto Mankind, Leicester, Islamic Foundation, 1995.
  4. AI-Qur'an 30:21
  5. Al-Qur'an 13:38
  6. AI-Qur'an 4:21
  7. Al-Qur'an 17:32; see also Mohammed Abdur Rauf, Islamic View of Wonun and the Family, Chicago, Kazi Publications, 1996.
  8. Sahih Muslim, chapter, The Book of Marriage, ljadith no. 3213, p. 703 quoted by Khurshid Ahmed, Family Life in Islam, Leicester, Islamic Foundation, 1974, footnote 33, p. 20.
  9. Mishkat, quoted by Khursffid Ahined in Family Life in Islam, Leicester, Islamic Foundation, 1974, footnote 53, p. 30.
  10. AI-Qur'5n 4:34.
  11. AI-Qur'5n 4: 1.
  12. @a4ib Muslim, An-Nasa'i and Ahmad quoted by Muhammad Naasir Ad-Deen Albaaniy, in The Etiquettes ofmarriage and Weddings, Los Angeles, a]-Madinah School, 1986, p. 17.
  13. $abih Al-Bukhari, Aba Diiwad and others quoted by Mubarnmad Naasir Ad-Decn Albaaniy, in The Etiquettes ofmarriage and Weddings, Los Angeles, al-Madinah School, 1986, p. 5.
  14. See for etiquette of married life in Islam, Muhaminad Yousuf Islahi, Etiquettes of Life in Islarn, Lahore, Islamic Publications Ltd., 1979, pp. 206-219; see also Muhammad Naasir Ad-Deen Albaaniy, The Etiquettes ofmarriage and Weddings, Los Angeles, al-Madinah School, 1986, pp. 9-12.
  15. See for etiquette of mattied life in Islam, Muhammad Yousuf Islahi, Etiquettes oflife in Islam, Lahore, Islamic Publications Ltd., 1979, pp. 206-219; see also Muhammad Naasir Ad Deen Albaaniy, Ale Etiquette ofmarriage and Weddings, Los Angeles, a] Madinah School, 1986, pp. 9-12.
  16. See for the domestic life of Prophet Muhanimad as a husband, Muhammad Abdul Rauf, The Islamic Family: A General View, Kuala Lumpur, Dewan Babasa dan Pustaka, 1994, pp. 10-38; see also Muhammad Nassir Ad Deen Albaaniy, The Etiquettes ofmarriage and Weddings, Los Angeles, al-Madinah School, 1986, p. 6.
  17. AI-Qur'an 4: 1.
  18. See Interview of Dr. llham al-Talib by Dr. Zeenath Kausar, Reproduction, Technology and Islam, audio cassette and unpublished paper, International lslwnic University, Malaysia, Library, 1995; see also Chiam Heng Keng, Children: Our Heritage, Kuala Lumpur, University of Malaya, 1992.
  19. AI-Qur'an 44:6.
  20. Mishkat al-Ma@abib quoted by Khurshid Ahmed in Family Life in Islam, Leicester, Islaniic Foundation, 1974, p. 22.
  21. AI-Qur'an 14:40-41.
  22. AI-Qur'an 27:74.
  23. AI-Qur'an 12:40.
  24. Muha.mmad Yusuf Islahi, Etiquettes of Life in Islam, Lahore, Islamic Foundation Ltd., 1967, p. 227.
  25. A]-Qur'an 25:2.
  26. For a comprehensive discussion on the rights of children and obligations of parents, see Hainmudah 'Abd al-'Ati, The Family Structure in Islam, Indianapolis, American Trust Publications, 1977, pp. 182-283; see also Muhammad Yusuf Islahi, Etiquettes of Life in Islam, Lahore, Islamic Foundation Ltd., 1967, p. 230.
  27. Tirmizi, quoted by Syed JaWuddin Ansar Umari, in Woman and Islam, (English tr. Zeenath Kausar), Aligarh, 1990, p. 30.
  28. A]-Qur'an 2:187, Muslim quoted by Muharnmad Yusuf Islahi, Etiquettes of Life in Islam, Lahore, Islamic Foundation Ltd, 1967, p. 231.
  29. AI-Qur'an 17:31; see for a detailed discussion on birth control and abortion, Muhammad Abdul Rauf, The Islamic Family: A General View, Kuala Lumpur, Dewali Bahasa dan Flustaka, 1994, pp. 64-77.
  30. AI-Qur'an 6:140; see for pro and against arguments on birth control, M. Mazheruddin Siddiqui, Women in Islam, Delhi, Adam Publishers and Distributors, 1993, pp. 126-140.
  31. See Interview of Dr. Ilham al-Talib by Dr. Zeenath Kausar on Reproduction, Technology and lam, audio cassette and unpublished paper, IIUM, Library, 1995.
  32. AI-Qur'an 27:55.
  33. A]-Qur'an 3:38.
  34. For the problems related to Sperm Bank and other related issues in the West, see Wahiduddin Khan, Woman Between Islam and Western Society, New Delhi, The Islamic Centre, 1997, pp. 91-106; see also Interview on Reproduction, Technology and Islam of'Dr. llham a]-Talib by Dr. ath Kausar, IIUM Library, Malaysia, 1995.
  35. For the problems of artificial insemination in the West, see Wahiduddin Khan, Woman Between and Western Society, New Delhi, The Islamic Centre, 1997, pp. 106-122; see also Interview on Reproduction, Technology and Islam of Dr. llham al-Talib by Dr. Zeenath Kausar, IUM Library, Malaysia, 1995.
  36. Al-Qur'an 17:23.
  37. Maja, quoted by quoted by Muhwnmad Yusuf Islahi, Etiquettes of Life in Islam, Lahore, slamic Foundation Ltd, 1967, p. 191.
  38. Muslim, quoted by Muharnmad Yusuf Islahi, Etiquettes of Life in Islam, Lahore, Islamic undation Lid, 1967, p. 194.
  39. Al-Qur'an 46:15.
  40. Sunan, The Book of Al-'Adah, chapter on "Obedience to Parents", Hakim, Mustadrak, ol. 4, p. 150, quoted by Jalaluddin Ansar Umari, in Woman and Islam (English tr. Zeenath ausar), Aligarh, 1990, p. 21.
  41. For a comprehensive discussion on woman as 'mother', 'daughter' and 'wife', see JaWuddin sar Umari, Woman and Islam (English tr. Zeenath Kausar), Aligarh, 1990, pp. 19-31.
  42. For an understanding of the status of woman in Islam and the problems of Muslim society, see Jamal Badawi, The Status of Woman in Islam, Indianapolis, American Trust Publications, 1983; also Lamya AI-Faruqi, Woman, Muslim Society and Islam, Iiidianapolis, American Trust blications, 1987.
  43. Muslim, quoted by Muhammad Yusuf Islahi, Etiquettes of Life in Islam, Islamic Foundations td, Lahore, 1967, p. 196; see also Hainmudah 'Abd at 'Ati, The Family Structure in Islam, ndianapolis, American Trust Publications, 1977, pp. 203-107.
  44. Al-Qur'an 14:41.

First published in the Muslim Education Ouarterly
Vol. 16, No. 3, 1999
Islamic Academy, Cambridge, U.K. 

Articles Muslim Matrimonials and More