Tuesday, January 03, 2017

Mahr Q&A

Regarding the issue of stipulating salawaat, ayaat of the Qur'an, or obligatory acts of worship such as Hajj for a woman's mahr (1):
The story of Umm Sulaym (radhiAllahu 'anha) cannot be used as an evidence for the validity of requesting a mahr that is related to worship or thing without a specific value.
The incident regarding Umm Sulaym (radhiAllahu 'anha) and Abu Tal'ha (radhiAllahu 'anhu) took place before the Hijrah, whereas aayah 24 of Surah anNisaa', which specifically mentions the Mahr, was revealed several years after the Hijrah of RasulAllah (sallAllahu 'alayhi wa sallam).(2)
All four madhaahib are agreed upon that the Mahr must constitute something of value.
"As one of the conditions is the status of dowry itself; being lawful and having pecuniary value in terms of a commodity whose transaction is considered legal by Islamic law."(3)

To illustrate:
يجوز جعل المصحف ذاته مهرا لكونه متمولا، ولا يجوز جعل العمل به مهرا لكون ذلك غير متمول.
"It is permitted to set the written copy of Quran as mahr because it is of monetary value, but it is not permissible to set acting upon the Quran as mahr as it has no monetary value." (4)

However, women do have the right to waive their dowry if they choose to do so freely and without coercion. (5)

RasulAllah (sallAllahu 'alayhi wa sallam) gave all his wives a Mahr of monetary value. Dollar-to-dollar, the price depends upon currency etc. but it was, at the time, equivalent to 1487.5 grams of silver. (6)
2) حدهما: أن ذلك كان قبل هجرة رسول الله (صلى الله عليه وسلم) بمدة، لأن أبا طلحة قديم الإسلام من أول الأنصار إسلاماً، ولم يكن نزل إيجاب إيتاء النساء صدقاتهن. الثاني: " أنه ليس في ذلك الخبر أن رسول الله (صلى الله عليه وسلم) علم ذلك ".

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