Marriage is a happy service for every Muslim. Everyone competes to hold a once-in-a-lifetime event with luxury and impressions. The aim is to be able to remember that day as the most beautiful day in their lives. On that basis, a man establishes himself materially so he can give the most perfect dowry to the woman he loves.
So what if there are men who want to get married but have not been able to give dowry to women? And what law is marriage without dowry in Islam? Here is the explanation.
Legitimate Terms in Marriage
Before we go into the subject matter, let us first describe the legitimate requirements in marriage. A man and woman are considered legitimate to marry if the marriage meets the following requirements:
- Ridha, in the sense that one couple both male and female must be married on the basis of liking, not on the basis of coercion of certain parties.
- Guardian is a companion (can the biological family/the most important relatives) from the woman who will marry the woman with the man.
- Witness, two people were chosen from both men and women. One party can mix.
- Ijab, or the agreement of the two parties as proof that the marriage is legal.
So what about Mahar? This is explained in QS. An Nisa’ verse 24 which reads:
وَأُحِلَّ لَكُم مَّاوَرَآءَ ذَالِكُمْ أَن تَبْتَغُوا بِأَمْوَالِكُمْ مُحْصِنِينَ غَيْرَ مُسَافِحِينَ
“And it is lawful for you other than that which is to seek wives with your wealth to marry not to commit adultery.” (Surah an-Nisa: 24)
The other explanation for QS. An Nisa’ verse 4 which reads:
وَءَاتُوا النِّسَآءَ صَدُقَاتِهِنَّ نِحْلَةً فَإِن طِبْنَ لَكُمْ عَن شَىْءٍ مِّنْهُ نَفَسًا فَكُلُوهُ هَنِيئًا مَّرِيئًا
“Give dowry to the woman (whom you marry) as a gift full of willingness. If they give you a portion of the dowry gladly, then eat (take) the gift (as food) which is good again as a result.” (An-Nisa: 4)
So, basically it can be concluded that the dowry is obligatory as a legitimate condition in marriage. In fact, in the Hadith the Prophet also explained:
“Ask for (the dowry) even though (only) a ring made of iron.” (Narrated by Bukhari Muslim)
So what are the minimum requirements for dowry in Islam?
Actually, what is not explained is minimal. As long as the dowry meets the requirements, has value or has benefits. As a model to better understand the law being married without dowry in Islam, here are some cases of marriage with a legitimate dowry that occurred at the time of the Prophet.
A Muslim woman of Faza’ah is married by the Prophet to the man of his choice with a dowry of a pair of sandals. Ibn Majah, Tirmidhi, and Ahmad narrated the hadith when the Prophet asked the woman.
“From Amir bin Rabi’ah that there is a woman from Banu Fazaah married with a dowry of a pair of sandals. Then the Prophet sallallaahu ‘alaihi wasallam asked him, “Are you giving yourself up and what do you have with a pair of sandals?” The woman replied, “Yes,” the Prophet allowed him. (Narrated by Tirmidhi, Ibn Majah, and Ahmad; saheeh)
Ali bin Abi Talib did not have anything as a dowry to marry Fatimah. The Prophet suggested asking for his hand with a dowry of armor (the protective clothes he used to fight).
From Ibn Abbas that when Ali radhiyallahu ‘anhu married Fatimah radhiyallahu ‘anha, the Prophet sallallaahu ‘alaihi wasallam said to him, “Give her (dowry) something.” Ali replied, “I have nothing.” Then, the Messenger of Allah said, “Give your armor.” (HR. An Nasa’i)
As for other stories, the companions of the Prophet did not have anything more than an iron ring, married to the woman of his choice with the reading of the verses of the Quran. Narrated in other Hadiths:
“Do you memorize the verses from the Quran?” The man replied, “I memorized this letter and this letter”. Then the Prophet said, “I will marry you two with the mahar Al Quran verses that are in you.” (Narrated by Bukhari and Muslim)
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The last is the dowry of Umm Sulaim. It is often said that this is the noblest marriage of the master.
Umm Sulaim is a woman who believes in Allah. But because he had an infidel husband, he had difficulty raising his son named Anas. Even her husband forbade when Umm Sulaim taught Anas two sentences of Shahada.
One time, her husband went to the land of Sham. On the way, he was intercepted by his enemy and killed. Umm Sulaim must take care of his own child. Umm Sulaim is a woman who never gave up. She taught her children with glory and kindness so that Anas became a strong and kind-hearted young man. In fact, the glory and kindness of Umm Sulaim were greatly admired by many people and became an example.
Finally, the kindness and glory of Um Sulaim reached the ears of Abu Talha, a well-established treasure in those days. He heard the news about a beautiful and kind widow.
After seeing with his own eyes, Abu Talha also intended to propose Umm Sulaim. Abu Talha offered a very expensive dowry. But unfortunately, Um Sulaim rejected it because Abu Talha was an infidel (worshiping besides Allah). Abu Talha who was heartbroken because of being rejected returned home sadly. But he did not give up, with a sincere love; he returned and offered a more expensive dowry than before. Unfortunately, for the second time, he was rejected.
Feeling brokenhearted and rejected constantly, Abu Talha asked,
“How many dowries do you really want? Are gold and silver still not enough?” asked Abu Talha.
“I do not need gold and silver,” answered Umu Sulaim to Abu Talha.
“Then what do you want?” asked Abu Talha again. He had made up his mind to marry Umm Sulaim with any sacrifice.
“Actually, I do not want gold and silver. What I want from you is Islam.” Umm Sulaim continued honestly.
Abu Talha was very surprised because he was a person who had never studied Islam at all in his life.
“Then who will teach me about Islam?” asked Abu Talha.
Umm Sulaim answered,
“The one who will teach you is the Messenger of Allah.”
Because of that great love, Abu Talha came to the Prophet to study Islam. And after that, Abu Talhah wooed Umm Sulaim with Islamic dowry (Mualaf). The priest who can give an example is the noblest dowry.
The conclusion of the explanation above is that a man or woman can be legally married if he meets certain criteria. The legal status is still mandatory as a debt that must be paid to the woman. However, regardless of the type or shape of the dowry, it is considered halal if it has value and benefits to those given.