The truth concerning the Prophet’s marriage to Safiyyah bint Huyay ibn Akhtab.

Question:

I need an answer for the following part of this article entitled “The Compassionate, The Merciful Prophet!”

Think about this again. Think about that young Jewish widow Safiyyah one more time please! This young and beautiful 17-year-old newlywed Jewish young lady was among those captured women and children at the war of Khaybar. She was the daughter of the leader of Bani Nadir Huyay ibn Akhtab. Her father was executed by the Prophet, and she just lost her brother, husband, and all other male relatives in that war. She was drowned in profound grief by this great tragedy and was weeping endless tears.

But so, what? Because of her paragon beauty – she was already selected as the booty (spoils) for the “compassionate” Prophet. The Prophet had sex with this young Safiyyah on their way back to Medina on the same night in the tent. Of course, according to some Sahih Hadith, the Prophet asked for sex the same day, but she did not allow him because of her menstruation period and on the second day, the Prophet married her and consummated with her on the way back to Medina.

Whatever is true, it was for sure that Prophet asked for sex with Safiyyah in a period when the poor Safiyyah was in terrible grief by losing her father, brother, husband, and relatives and before the blood of her relatives was even dry. By what yardstick can we measure the mercifulness and compassionateness of our Prophet? Could any Islamist tell me why our Prophet had to set this terrible example?

Answer:

All perfect praise be to Allah, The Lord of the worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allah, and that Muhammad, Peace be upon him, is His slave and Messenger.

Every Muslim has to respect and hold the Prophet Muhammad, Peace be upon him, in high esteem. Likewise, he has to honor all the Prophets and believe in their infallibility. One has to believe that they are chosen personalities; Allah The Almighty protected them from every abominable act and deed.

This is a generally accepted fact, no one disagrees with it except Jews who accuse the prophets of bad deeds and atheists who do not respect Allah The Almighty and His prophets and who do not recognize their rights.

After believing in this well-known and well-established fact, if one comes across any report that is contrary to the above fact, it should not make one doubtful, as either it is a fabricated story or it is to be interpreted in a way that befits the honorable status of the Prophet, Peace be upon him.

Know that Umm al-Mumineen Safiyyah daughter of Huyay, may Allah be pleased with her, was married to Salaam bin Mushkam and then Kinaanah bin Al-Rabee’ bin Abu al-Haqaiqh married her. Her father Huyay had been killed in the Battle of Quraizah for breaching the covenant, he was not killed in the Battle of Khaibar.

The Prophet, Peace be upon him, made peace with the people of Khaibar after besieging them. After that agreement, no one was killed except two persons: two sons of Abu al-Haqeeq for breaching the agreement. According to the agreement no one would hide their property, nevertheless the two sons of Abu al-Haqeeq hid the property of Huyay bin Akhtab. Thus, they were killed as a punishment.

The general rule is that the women of warriors become captives. Dihyah, may Allah be pleased with him, a Companion of the Prophet, Peace be upon him, asked the Prophet, Peace be upon him, to give him a slave woman and he permitted him to take one of the captives.

Thus, he chose Safiyyah, may Allah be pleased with her. Then, the Prophet, Peace be upon him, was told that she was the first lady among Banu Quraythah and an-Nadheer (two Jewish tribes) and it was not suitable to make her marry anybody except him.

Thereafter, the Prophet, Peace be upon him, presented Islam to her, and she accepted it willingly. Then the Prophet, Peace be upon him, manumitted her and married her and her Mahr (bridal dowry) was her manumission. She accepted Islam of her own free will, although it was possible for her to remain on her religion.

In fact, her manumission was an honor for her granted by the Prophet Muhammad, Peace be upon him. Indeed, her marriage with the Prophet, Peace be upon him, was a blessing of Allah The Almighty who honored her by this marriage; due to this marriage she became the Mother of all Believers.

All Muslims seek Allah’s blessings for her until the Day of Judgment. Let us assume that the honor and dignity came to her after facing calamities and trials, many times favors come after a calamity as Allah The Almighty Says (what means): {… and it may be that you dislike a thing which is good for you …} [Quran, 2: 216]

In addition, there are many narrations proving that the Prophet, Peace be upon him, brought peace and happiness to her and comforted her. He also clarified the reasons for what had happened to her people. Thereupon she said, “I did not get up from my place until he was the most beloved person to me”. Another narration reads that she said, “I never saw anyone who has a better character than the Prophet, Peace be upon him “.

She also said, “I saw him riding on his mount while I was feeling sleepy and my head was falling on the stick of the mount, then he would pat me with his hand saying: “Take it easy, O daughter of Huyay bin Akhtab”. When they reached Al-Sahabah he, Peace be upon him, said to her: “O Safiyyah! I apologize for what I did to your people; certainly, they accused me of such and such.”

In fact, Allah The Almighty honored His Prophet, Peace be upon him, by protecting him from marrying any woman who hated or disliked him. On the other hand, Allah The Almighty prepared her mentally for this marriage wherein she had seen in a dream that a full moon fell in her lap. When she narrated this dream to her husband Kinaanah, he slapped her saying, ‘Do you like the king of Yathrib’?

Afterwards, the Prophet, Peace be upon him, noticed the green discoloration around her eyes due to that slap. Very soon, she knew that Allah The Almighty made her dream come true and honored her by her marriage with His beloved Prophet, Peace be upon him. She died during the caliphate of Mu’aawiyah, may Allah be pleased with him, in 50 A.H. Indeed, she is the wife of the Prophet, Peace be upon him, in both this world and the Hereafter.

Allah Knows best.

Prepared by Mohamad Mostafa Nassar- Australia.

Make sure to copy and email this post for your reference, you might need it later. Arrogance is not only a sign of insecurity, but also a sign of immaturity. Mature and fully realised persons can get their points across, even emphatically without demeaning or intimidating other