Isn’t It Unhealthy for Women of This World to Compete with the Maidens of Paradise?

Answered by Ustadha Shazia Ahmad

Question

I have a problem with this hadith “No wife hurts her husband in this life except that his wife from the maidens of Paradise says, ‘Don’t hurt him – may Allah deal with you! He is only with you as a guest, and is about to leave you to come to us.’”

The form is violent (they seem to say that the husband will be taken from us even if it is not true), and the woman is put under pressure whereas, for men, no one curses them if they do wrong, neither angels nor anyone from heaven. Why?

The woman will be cursed each time she annoys her husband, whereas, in a marriage, it is customary to argue, and when he annoys his wife, no doubt, nothing will curse him. This competition with the maidens of Paradise is unhealthy.

Answer

Thank you for your question. Allah does not inspire or motivate us with something unhealthy; rather, healthy competition is one of the purposes of this hadith. Our Creator knows exactly what will make us behave better, and we should see this as an opportunity to refine good character instead of being embittered.

Superiority

Please be reassured that the women of this world are superior to the maidens of Paradise and know that, in reality, there is no competition.

Umm Salama, may Allah be pleased with her, asked the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) about the maidens of Paradise. Here is an excerpt from the lengthy hadith:

“(…) She then asked, ‘O Prophet, are the women of this world superior or the hoors?’ He replied, ‘The women of this world will have superiority over the hoors just as the outer lining of a garment has superiority over the inner lining.’

Umm Salama (may Allah be well pleased with him) then asked, ‘O Messenger of Allah, what is the reason for this?’ He answered, ‘Because they performed Salah, fasted and worshipped Allah. Allah will put light on their faces and silk on their bodies. They will be fair in complexion and wear green clothing and yellow jewelry. Their incense burners will be made of pearls, and their combs will be of gold. They will say–We are the women who will stay forever, and we will never die. We are the women who will always remain in comfort and will never die. We are the women who will always remain in comfort and will never undergo difficulty. We are the women who will stay, and we will never leave. Listen, we are happy women, and we will never become sad. Glad tidings to those men for whom we are and who are for us. (…)’” [Tabarani; Tafseer ibn Kathir (56:22)]

Please see more detailed answers to your question here:
Explaining Misunderstood Hadith About Women
Is There Someone in Paradise That Gets Sad When Women Are Hurt on Earth?
Why Are Only Wives Threatened in Hadith for Making Mistakes?
Why Does a Maiden of Paradise Curse the Women of This World?
Reader on Women’s Ranks in the Hereafter
Is It OK to Never Marry Because There Is No Mercy for Women in It?

May Allah give you the best of this world and the next.
[Ustadha] Shazia Ahmad
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadha Shazia Ahmad lived in Damascus, Syria for two years where she studied aqidah, fiqh, tajweed, tafsir, and Arabic. She then attended the University of Texas at Austin, where she completed her Masters in Arabic. Afterward, she moved to Amman, Jordan where she studied fiqh, Arabic, and other sciences. She later moved back to Mississauga, Canada, where she lives with her family.