Answering Islam - A Christian-Muslim dialog

Did You Know That Muhammad Was A Misogynist?

Sam Shamoun

In this section I am going to turn the tables on Paul Williams in order to give him a taste of his own medicine. I will be quoting Quranic verses and ahadith to show that Muhammad looked down upon women, viewing them as sexual property which men owned and could discipline.

Did you know that Muhammad and his followers thought women were stupid and therefore less intelligent than men?

Did you know that this is why Muhammad proclaimed that the testimony of two female witnesses is equivalent to a single male witness, and why a woman gets half of the inheritance that a man gets?

Now just in case Williams accuses us of making things up, here are all the Quranic verses and narrations which affirm all that we have just said:

“The divorced shall wait the result, until they have had their courses thrice, nor ought they to conceal what God hath created in their wombs, if they believe in God and the last day; and it will be more just in their husbands to bring them back when in this state, if they desire what is right. And it is for the women to act as they (the husbands) act by them, in all fairness; but the men are A STEP ABOVE THEM. God is Mighty, Wise.” S. 2:228 Rodwell

“… And get two witnesses out of your own men. And if there are not two men (available), then a man and two women, such as you agree for witnesses, so that if one of them (two women) errs, the other can remind her…” S. 2:282 Hilali-Khan

“Allah commands you as regards your children's (inheritance); to the male, a portion equal to that of two females…” S. 4:11 Hilali-Khan

“… if there are brothers and sisters, the male will have twice the share of the female…” S. 4:176 Hilali-Khan

And lest Williams accuses us of distorting the meaning of texts such as Q. 2:228 or 4:34, we will simply allow his own scholars to bring out the clear implications of these verses for him:

“… And summon to bear witness, the debt, two witnesses, men, mature Muslim free men; or if the two, witnesses, be not men, then one man and two women, to bear witness, such witnesses as you approve of, on account of their piety and probity; the number of women is because of the fact, so that if one of the two women errs, forgets the testimony, GIVEN THEIR LESSER ASTUTENESS AND ACCURACY; the other, the one remembering, will remind her (read fa-tudhakkira or fa-tudhkira), the one that has forgotten — the ‘reminding’ clause is the reason [for the choice of two women], that is to say, so that she may be reminded if she errs or strays into error, because this [forgetfulness] is the cause of it (a variant reading [for an, ‘that’] has the conditional in, ‘if’, with [the verb inflected as] tudhakkiru, ‘she will remind’, making it a new sentence, the response to which [follows])…” (Tafsir al-Jalalayn, Q. 2:282; bold and capital emphasis ours)

Men are in charge of, they have authority over, women, disciplining them and keeping them in check, because of that with which God has preferred the one over the other, that is, because God has given them the advantage over women, IN KNOWLEDGE, REASON, authority and otherwise, and because of what they expend, on them [the women], of their property…” (Ibid., Q. 4:34; bold and capital emphasis ours)

“… And they (women) have rights) and inviolability with their husbands (similar to those) of their husbands (over them in kindness) in kind companionship and intercourse, (and men are a degree above them) in relation to the REASONING FACULTY, INHERITANCE, BLOOD MONEY, as WITNESSES in court and also that which they owe them in terms of expenditure and service.” (Tanwîr al-Miqbâs min Tafsîr Ibn ‘Abbâs, Q. 2:228; bold and capital emphasis ours)

“(Men are in charge of women) they are in charge of overseeing the proper conduct of women, (because Allah hath made the one of them) the men THROUGH REASON and the division of booty and estates (to excel the other) the women…” (Ibid., Q. 4:34; bold and capital emphasis ours)


According to Yunus - Ibn Wahb - Ibn Zayd (commenting on God's word: "And he whispered"): Satan whispered to Eve about the tree and succeeded in taking her to it; then he made it seem good to Adam. He continued. When Adam felt a need for her and called her, she said: No! unless you go there. When he went, she said again: No! unless you eat from this tree. He continued. They both ate from it, and their secret parts became apparent to them. He continued. Adam then went about in Paradise in flight. His Lord called out to him: Adam, is it from Me that you are fleeing? Adam replied: No, my Lord, but I feel shame before You. When God asked what had caused his trouble, he replied: Eve, my Lord. Whereupon God said: Now it is My obligation to make her bleed once every month, as she made this tree bleed. I ALSO MAKE HER STUPID, although I had created her intelligent (halimah), and must make her suffer pregnancy and birth with difficulty, although I made it easy for her to be pregnant and give birth. Ibn Zayd said: Were it not for the affliction that affected Eve, the women of this world would not menstruate, AND THEY WOULD BE INTELLIGENT and, when pregnant, give birth easily. (The History of Al-Tabari: General Introduction and From the Creation to the Flood, translated by Franz Rosenthal [State University of New York Press (SUNY), Albany 1989], Volume 1, pp. 280-281; bold and capital emphasis ours)

Did you know that Muhammad also gave men the right to beat their wives whom they fear are being rebellious towards them?

Men are in charge of women, because Allah hath made the one of them to excel the other, and because they spend of their property (for the support of women). So good women are the obedient, guarding in secret that which Allah hath guarded. As for those from whom ye fear rebellion, admonish them and banish them to beds apart, AND SCOURGE THEM. Then if they obey you, seek not a way against them. Lo! Allah is ever High, Exalted, Great. S. 4:34 Pickthall

The following expositor provides the historical setting for the “revelation” of this verse:

(Men are in charge of women…) [4:34]. Said Muqatil: “This verse (Men are in charge of women…) was revealed about Sa‘d ibn al-Rabi‘, who was one of the leaders of the Helpers (nuqaba’), and his wife Habibah bint Zayd ibn Abi Zuhayr, both of whom from the Helpers. It happened Sa‘d hit his wife on the face because she rebelled against him. Then her father went with her to see the Prophet. He said to him: ‘I gave him my daughter in marriage and he slapped her’. The Prophet said: ‘Let her have retaliation against her husband’. As she was leaving with her father to execute retaliation, the Prophet called them and said: ‘Come back; Gabriel has come to me’, and Allah, exalted is He, revealed this verse. The Messenger of Allah said: ‘We wanted something while Allah wanted something else, and that which Allah wants is good’. Retaliation was then suspended”. Sa‘id ibn Muhammad ibn Ahmad al-Zahid informed us> Zahir ibn Ahmad> Ahmad ibn al-Husayn ibn Junayd> Ziyad ibn Ayyub> Hushaym> Yunus ibn al-Hasan who reported that a man slapped his wife and she complained about him to the Prophet. Her family who went with her said: “O Messenger of Allah! So-and-so has slapped our girl”. The Prophet kept saying: “Retaliation! Retaliation! And there is no other judgement to be held”. But then this verse (Men are in charge of women…) was revealed and the Prophet said: “We wanted something and Allah wanted something else”. Abu Bakr al-Harithi informed us> Abu’l-Shaykh al-Hafiz> Abu Yahya al-Razi> Sahl al-‘Askari> ‘Ali ibn Hashim> Isma‘il> al-Hasan who said: “Around the time when the verse on retaliation was revealed amongst the Muslims, a man had slapped his wife. She went to the Prophet: ‘My husband has slapped me and I want retaliation’. So he said: ‘Let there be retaliation’. As he was still dealing with her, Allah, exalted is He, revealed (Men are in charge of women, because Allah hath made the one of them to excel the other…). Upon which the Prophet said: ‘We wanted something and my Lord wanted something different. O man, take your wife by the hand’ ”. ('Alī ibn Ahmad al-Wahidi, Asbab al-Nuzul, Q. 4:34; bold emphasis ours)

It is interesting to see how Muhammad wanted to enact justice on the husbands who beat their spouses, which was a noble and virtuous thing for him to do, and yet Allah made sure to prevent his “messenger” from doing so, thereby giving men the right to beat and abuse their wives!

In fact, sometimes the beating would get so bad that it would actually leave a bruise on a woman’s body, with Muhammad doing nothing about it:

Narrated 'Ikrima:
Rifa'a divorced his wife whereupon 'AbdurRahman bin Az-Zubair Al-Qurazi married her. 'Aisha said that the lady (came), wearing a green veil (and complained to her (Aisha) of her husband and showed her a green spot on her skin caused by beating). It was the habit of ladies to support each other, so when Allah's Apostle came, 'Aisha said, "I have not seen any woman suffering AS MUCH AS THE BELIEVING WOMEN. Look! Her skin IS GREENER THAN HER CLOTHES!" When 'AbdurRahman heard that his wife had gone to the Prophet, he came with his two sons from another wife. She said, "By Allah! I have done no wrong to him but he is impotent and is as useless to me as this," holding and showing the fringe of her garment, 'Abdur-Rahman said, "By Allah, O Allah's Apostle! She has told a lie! I am very strong and can satisfy her but she is disobedient and wants to go back to Rifa'a." Allah's Apostle said, to her, "If that is your intention, then know that it is unlawful for you to remarry Rifa'a unless 'Abdur-Rahman has had sexual intercourse with you." Then the Prophet saw two boys with 'Abdur-Rahman and asked (him), "Are these your sons?" On that 'AbdurRahman said, "Yes." The Prophet said, "You claim what you claim (i.e. that he is impotent)? But by Allah, these boys resemble him as a crow resembles a crow," (Sahih al-Bukhari, Volume 7, Book 72, Number 715; *)

Hence, not only did Muhammad do absolutely nothing to rebuke or discipline the man for beating his wife so badly, we also see from Aisha’s statement that Muslim women were being treated worse and suffered more than any other women.

Did you know that Muhammad preached that the majority of those in hell were women because he thought they were stupider than men, and also because their menses caused them to be less religious than their male counterparts?

Narrated Abu Said Al-Khudri:
Once Allah's Apostle went out to the Musalla (to offer the prayer) on ‘Id-al-Adha or Al-Fitr prayer. Then he passed by the women and said, "O women! Give alms, as I have seen that THE MAJORITY of the dwellers of Hell-fire were you (women)." They asked, "Why is it so, O Allah's Apostle?" He replied, "You curse frequently and are ungrateful to your husbands. I have not seen anyone more deficient in intelligence and religion THAN YOU. A cautious sensible man could be led astray by some of you." The women asked, "O Allah's Apostle! What is deficient in our intelligence and religion?" He said, "Is not THE EVIDENCE OF TWO WOMEN EQUAL TO THE WITNESS OF ONE MAN?" They replied in the affirmative. He said, "This is the deficiency in her intelligence. Isn't it true that a woman can neither pray nor fast during her menses?" The women replied in the affirmative. He said, "This is the deficiency in her religion." (Sahih al-Bukhari, Volume 1, Book 6, Number 301; *; see also Volume 2, Book 24, Number 541)


Narrated Abu Said Al-Khudri:
The Prophet said, "Isn't the witness of a woman equal to half of that of a man?" The women said, "Yes." He said, "THIS IS BECAUSE OF THE DEFICIENCY OF A WOMAN’S MIND." (Sahih al-Bukhari, Volume 3, Book 48, Number 826; *)

Notice how Muhammad alludes to Q. 2:282 regarding the testimony of two women being equivalent to one man to prove that women are intellectually inferior to men.

Hence, Muhammad not only believed that women were basically stupid, being less intelligent and religious than men, and who have also been cursed with menstruation, he even thought that women made up the majority of the inhabitants of hell!

Did you know that Muhammad discriminated against barren women since he prohibited his followers from marrying them solely because he wanted men to have as many children as possible in order to outnumber the nations?

Narrated Ma'qil ibn Yasar:

A man came to the Prophet and said: I have found a woman of rank and beauty, but she does not give birth to children. Should I marry her? He said: No. He came again to him, but he prohibited him. He came to him third time, and he (the Prophet) said: Marry women who are loving and very prolific, for I shall outnumber the peoples by you. (Sunan Abu Dawud, Book 11, Number 2045; *)

This hadith is classified as Sahih by al-Albani in Irwa’ Ghaleel, 1784 (cf. this article).

Did you know that we did not find a similar narration where Muhammad prohibits women from marrying infertile men?

This narration pretty much confirms that Muhammad thought that women were only useful for sex and children, otherwise they held little to no value in his eyes.

Did you know that Muhammad encouraged men to marry young virgin girls, as opposed to older women, since minors are fun to fondle and make for good playmates?

Narrated Jabir bin Abdullah: While we were returning from a Ghazwa (Holy Battle) with the Prophet, I started driving my camel fast, as it was a lazy camel. A rider came behind me and pricked my camel with a spear he had with him, and then my camel started running as fast as the best camel you may see. Behold! The rider was the Prophet himself. He said, “What makes you in such a hurry?" I replied, “I am newly married.” He said, "Did you marry a virgin or a matron? I replied, "A matron." He said, "Why didn't you marry a young girl so that you may play with her and she with you?" When we were about to enter (Medina), the Prophet said, "Wait so that you may enter (Medina) at night so that the lady of unkempt hair may comb her hair and the one whose husband has been absent may shave her pubic region.” (Sahih al-Bukhari, Volume 7, Book 62, Number 16; *)

Narrated Jabir bin 'Abdullah: When I got married, Allah's Apostle said to me, "What type of lady have you married?" I replied, "I have married a matron.” He said, "Why, don't you have a liking for the virgins and for fondling them?" Jabir also said: Allah's Apostle said, "Why didn't you marry a young girl so that you might play with her and she with you?” (Sahih al-Bukhari, Volume 7, Book 62, Number 17)

Did you know that Muhammad himself married a prepubescent minor, one who was still playing on swings and with her dolls when her marriage was consummated to a man who was approximately 54 years old, old enough to be her grandfather?

XXXIX. A man giving his young children in marriage

By the words of Allah, "that also applies to those who have not yet menstruated" (65:4) and He made the 'idda of a girl BEFORE PUBERTY three months.

4840. It is related from 'A'isha that the Prophet married her when she was six years old and consummated it when she was nine, and she was his wife for nine years. (Aisha Bewley, The Sahih Collection of Al-Bukhari, Chapter 70. Book of Marriage; *; capital emphasis ours)

Narrated Aisha:
The Prophet engaged me when I was a girl of six (years). We went to Medina and stayed at the home of Bani-al-Harith bin Khazraj. Then I got ill and my hair fell down. Later on my hair grew (again) and my mother, Um Ruman, came to me while I was playing in a swing with some of my girl friends. She called me, and I went to her, not knowing what she wanted to do to me. She caught me by the hand and made me stand at the door of the house. I was breathless then, and when my breathing became all right, she took some water and rubbed my face and head with it. Then she took me into the house. There in the house I saw some Ansari women who said, "Best wishes and Allah's Blessing and a good luck." Then she entrusted me to them and they prepared me (for the marriage). Unexpectedly Allah's Apostle came to me in the forenoon and my mother handed me over to him, and at that time I was a girl of nine years of age. (Sahih Al-Bukhari, Volume 5, Book 58, Number 234; *)

'A'isha reported that Allah's Apostle married her when she was seven years old, and he was taken to his house AS A BRIDE WHEN SHE WAS NINE, AND HER DOLLS WERE WITH HER; and when he (the Holy Prophet) died she was eighteen years old. (Sahih Muslim, Book 008, Number 3311; *)

Did you know that Muhammad permitted his men to have sex with captive women, even in cases where the husbands of these captives were still alive?

Also (prohibited are) women already married, except those whom your right hands possess: Thus hath God ordained (Prohibitions) against you: Except for these, all others are lawful, provided ye seek (them in marriage) with gifts from your property, - desiring chastity, not lust, seeing that ye derive benefit from them, give them their dowers (at least) as prescribed; but if, after a dower is prescribed, agree Mutually (to vary it), there is no blame on you, and God is All-knowing, All-wise. S. 4:24 Y. Ali

Islamic tradition attests that this verse was put into practice by Muhammad’s jihadists:

Abu Sirma said to Abu Sa'id al Khadri: O Abu Sa'id, did you hear Allah's Messenger mentioning al-'azl? He said: Yes, and added: We went out with Allah's Messenger 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, 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. (Sahih Muslim, Book 008, Number 3371; *)

Abu Said al-Khudri said: The apostle of Allah sent a military expedition to Awtas on the occasion of the battle of Hunain. They met their enemy and fought with them. They defeated them and took them captives. Some of the Companions of the Apostle of Allah were reluctant to have intercourse with the female captives in the presence of their husbands who were unbelievers. So Allah, the Exalted, sent down the Quranic verse, ‘And all married women (are forbidden) unto you save those (captives) whom your right hands possess’. That is to say, they are lawful for them when they complete their waiting period. (Sunan Abu Dawud, Volume 2, Number 2150)

It is rather unfortunate that Muhammad and his god did not share the shame and concern of the jihadists regarding the morality of raping captives whose husbands were still alive, but actually rushed to compose a text to justify such a perverted and heinous action.

The simple fact of the matter is that this is nothing more than outright adultery and rape since no sane woman would willingly sleep with men who have just gotten done killing her family members, especially if she is married and her husband happens to be alive.

Did you know that Muhammad granted his men permission to marry women for a sum of money and for short period of time in order to satisfy their sexual cravings?

Narrated Jabir bin ‘Abdullah and Salama bin Al-Akwa': While we were in an army, Allah's Apostle came to us and said, "You have been allowed to do the Mut’a (marriage), so do it." Salama bin Al-Akwa' said: Allah's Apostle's said, "If a man and a woman agree (to marry temporarily), their marriage should last for three nights, and if they like to continue, they can do so; and if they want to separate, they can do so." I do not know whether that was only for us or for all the people in general. Abu Abdullah (Al-Bukhari) said: ‘Ali made it clear that the Prophet said, "The Mut’a marriage has been cancelled (made unlawful)." (Sahih al-Bukhari, Volume 7, Book 62, Number 52; *)

Narrated Abdullah:
We used to participate in the holy battles led by Allah's Apostle and we had nothing (no wives) with us. So we said, "Shall we get ourselves castrated?" He forbade us that and then allowed us to marry women with a temporary contract and recited to us: -- ‘O you who believe! Make not unlawful the good things which Allah has made lawful for you, but commit no transgression.’ (5.87) (Sahih al-Bukhari, Volume 7, Book 62, Number 13o; *)

This is prostitution, plain and simple.

Did you know that, in spite of all this filth and wickedness, Williams will continue believing in his false prophet Muhammad, even though he tried to condemn the blessed Apostle Paul for what he thought were rather degrading teachings concerning women?

So much for Williams being a man of integrity and honesty.

Further Reading

Muhammad and the Rape of the Female Slaves
Muhammad, Aisha, Islam, and Child Brides
The Holy Bible on the Age of Marriage
Wife Beating In Islam
Domestic violence in the Quran
Women are inferior to men in the Quran
"Plowing fields" and marrying little girls in the Quran
Slave-girls as sexual property in the Quran
A strange divorce and remarriage law in the Quran
Women in Islam: [Part 1], [Part 2], [Part 3], [Part 4]
Women in the Bible: [Part 1], [Part 2]
The Urine of a Boy VS the Urine of a Girl in Islam Pt. 1, Pt. 2
The Inconsistency of Bassam Zawadi [Part 2]