On the discussion forums here, someone said this:
Translation of Sahih Muslim: Book 008, Number 3371:
Abu Sirma said to Abu Sa’id al Khadri (Allah he pleased with him): O Abu Sa’id, did you hear Allah’s Messenger (may peace be upon him) mentioning al-‘azl? He said: Yes, and added: We went out with Allah’s Messenger (may peace be upon him) on the expedition to the Bi’l-Mustaliq and took captive some excellent Arab women; and we desired them, for we were suffering from the absence of our wives, (but at the same time) we also desired ransom for them. So we decided to have sexual intercourse with them but by observing ‘azl (Withdrawing the male sexual organ before emission of semen to avoid-conception). But we said: We are doing an act whereas Allah’s Messenger is amongst us; why not ask him? So we asked Allah’s Messenger (may peace be upon him), and he said: It does not matter if you do not do it, for every soul that is to be born up to the Day of Resurrection will be born.
Translation of Sahih Muslim: Book 008, Number 3373:
Abu Sa’id al-Khudri (Allah be pleased with him) reported: We took women captives, and we wanted to do ‘azl with them. We then asked Allah’s Messenger (may peace be upon him) about it, and he said to us: Verily you do it, verily you do it, verily you do it, but the soul which has to be born until the Day of judgment must be born.
How do you wish me to assume that this man was good
Think about those women screaming as these men raped them…
think about their families and their husbands…
Think about the hatred being sowed here… think about the amount of hatred.
He was a military commander and a discipliner.
Please explain these Hadtih to me…
Now what Messenger of God would allow some of Gods creations to do this to some other creation?
The referred post is based on a misunderstanding of the international and inter-tribal customs and agreements related to captives and prisoners of wars.
The cited narratives have nothing to do with ransom and rape. These women were captives and, according to the prevalent international customs of the times, they were taken as slaves by their captors. Sexual relations between a man and his slave girls were not considered to be immoral by the society and was not considered to be rape. The captors as well as the captives were fully aware of this potential consequence of every war.
Being a social phenomenon of an international level, Islam could not have completely abolished it. However, Islam gave extensive directives and established traditions to improve the status of slaves and slave-girls at a macro level and promoted setting them free as a deed entailing great reward at the individual level1. Seen from this perspective, one can see that the treatment of slavery through the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) was the same as was directed through the prophet Moses (pbuh). The Easton’s Bible Dictionary under the title ‘Slave’ writes:
Slavery as it existed under the Mosaic law has no modern parallel. That law did not originate but only regulated the already existing custom of slavery (Ex 21:20,21,26,27; Le 25:44-46; Jos 9:6-27).
I hope this helps.
November 17, 2004
- For details, please refer to some of my earlier answers related to slavery [↩]