“When one of you sees a women who amazes him, let him go to his wife”: Sharh al-Nawawi

In Saheeh Muslim, Jaabir ibn ‘Abdullah reported:

أَنَّ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم رَأَى امْرَأَةً فَأَتَى امْرَأَتَهُ زَيْنَبَ وَهْىَ تَمْعَسُ مَنِيئَةً لَهَا فَقَضَى حَاجَتَهُ ثُمَّ خَرَجَ إِلَى أَصْحَابِهِ فَقَالَ ‏ “‏ إِنَّ الْمَرْأَةَ تُقْبِلُ فِي صُورَةِ شَيْطَانٍ وَتُدْبِرُ فِي صُورَةِ شَيْطَانٍ فَإِذَا أَبْصَرَ أَحَدُكُمُ امْرَأَةً فَلْيَأْتِ أَهْلَهُ فَإِنَّ ذَلِكَ يَرُدُّ مَا فِي نَفْسِهِ

The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) saw a woman, and so he came to his wife, Zainab, while she was tanning a leather hide and had fulfilled his need. He then went to his Companions and told them:

The woman advances in the form of a shaytaan and retires in the form of a shaytaan, so when one of you sees a woman, he should come to his wife, for that will repel what he feels in himself.
[Saheeh Muslim #1403]
Imam al-Nawawi, in his commentary on Saheeh Muslim, wrote the following on this hadeeth:
قوله صلى الله عليه وسلم : ( إن المرأة تقبل في صورة شيطان وتدبر في صورة شيطان فإذا أبصر أحدكم امرأة فليأت أهله فإن ذلك يرد ما في نفسه ) وفي الرواية الأخرى : إذا أحدكم أعجبته المرأة فوقعت في قلبه فليعمد إلى امرأته فليواقعها فإن ذلك يرد ما في نفسه . هذه الرواية الثانية مبينة للأولى .

His statement (ﷺ), “The woman advances in the form of a shaytaan and retires in the form of a shaytaan, so when one of you sees a woman, he should come to his wife, for that will repel what he feels in himself,” and in another narration, “When one of you sees a woman that he is amazed with her, then let him go to his wife, for indeed with her (his wife) is the same as that which is with her.” This second narration is an explanation of the first one.

ومعنى الحديث : أنه يستحب لمن رأى امرأة فتحركت شهوته أن يأتي امرأته أو جاريته إن كانت له ، فليواقعها ليدفع شهوته ، وتسكن نفسه ، ويجمع قلبه على ما هو بصدده .

And the meaning of the hadeeth is: it is highly recommended (mustahabb) for the one who sees a woman and then his desire is stirred by her to go to his wife or his concubine if he has one, in order to have sexual relations with her so that he may stave off his desire and calm himself and to fulfill his heart’s present concern.

قوله صلى الله عليه وسلم : ( إن المرأة تقبل في صورة شيطان وتدبر في صورة شيطان ) قال العلماء : معناه : الإشارة إلى الهوى والدعاء إلى الفتنة بها لما جعله الله تعالى في نفوس الرجال من الميل إلى النساء ، والالتذاذ بنظرهن ، وما يتعلق بهن ، فهي شبيهة بالشيطان في دعائه إلى الشر بوسوسته وتزيينه له . ويستنبط من هذا أنه ينبغي لها أن لا تخرج بين الرجال إلا لضرورة ، وأنه ينبغي للرجل الغض عن ثيابها ، والإعراض عنها مطلقا .
His statement (ﷺ), “The woman advances in the form of a shaytaan and retires in the form of a shaytaan.” The scholars have said: It means directing and pointing towards one whims and desires, and calling to fitnah with her, for Allah placed an inclination towards women in the hearts of men, and a sensual enjoyment in looking at them, and what is related to them. So she resembles the shaytaan in his calling toward evil by his waswasah (whisperings) and making evil seem appealing to him. And it is extrapolated from this that the woman ought not to go out among the men except when necessary, and that the man should avert his gaze from her clothing and turn away from her [i.e. not look at her] in an unequivocal sense.
 قوله : ( تمعس منيئة ) قال أهل اللغة : المعس بالعين المهملة : الدلك ، و ( المنيئة ) بميم مفتوحة ثم نون مكسورة ثم همزة ممدودة ثم تاء تكتب هاء ، وهي على وزن ( صغيرة ، وكبيرة ، وذبيحة ) قال أهل اللغة : هي الجلد أول ما يوضع الدباغ ، وقال الكسائي : يسمى منيئة ما دام في الدباغ ، وقال أبو عبيدة : هو في أول الدباغ منيئة ، ثم أفيق بفتح الهمزة وكسر الفاء ، وجمعه أفق ، كقفيز وقفز ، ثم أديم . والله أعلم .
[This section is devoted to a linguistic discussion of the phrase, “she was tanning a leather hide“, and its translation has been omitted.]
قوله : ( أن النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم رأى امرأة فأتى امرأته زينب ، وهي تمعس منيئة لها ، فقضى حاجته ، ثم خرج إلى أصحابه فقال : إن المرأة تقبل في صورة شيطان ) إلى آخره .
His statement, “The Prophet saw a woman, then he went to Zainab to fulfill his need and he went out to his companions and said: ‘Indeed when the woman enters, she enters in the image of shaytaan…” until the end [i.e. the second narration mentioned above, see al-Tirmidhi #1158]
قال العلماء : إنما فعل هذا بيانا لهم ، وإرشادا لما ينبغي لهم أن يفعلوه ، فعلمهم بفعله وقوله . وفيه أنه لا بأس بطلب الرجل امرأته إلى الوقاع في النهار وغيره ، وإن كانت مشتغلة بما يمكن تركه ؛ لأنه ربما غلبت على الرجل شهوة يتضرر بالتأخير في بدنه أو في قلبه وبصره . والله أعلم .

The scholars said: He only did this as an explanation for them, and a directing guidance that they should do as he did, so he taught them his his actions and his speech. And in this there is the lesson that there is no harm in the man seeking intercourse with his wife during the day-time or other than that, even if she is occupied with something that she is able to leave [i.e. so long as it is something that she is able to step away from]. Because perhaps the man would be overcome by his desires, and postponing [the fulfillment of his need] would cause him some harm in his body or in his heart and his vision. And Allah knows best.

[Sharh al-Nawawi ‘alaa Muslim #1403]
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One thought on ““When one of you sees a women who amazes him, let him go to his wife”: Sharh al-Nawawi

  1. Pingback: Qualities of the Successful Believers – Part 4/7: Tafsir al-Shinqitee | Tulayhah

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