Majalahnabawi.com – This modern era gave rise to a civilizational dynamic that is quite interesting to be studied by Muslim scholars in general. One of the issues that is quite hotly discussed is related to misogynistic hadith.
The term misogynist itself can be interpreted as hatred of women, or hatred of women. Misogynistic hadith means hadiths that contain an impression of hatred towards women and corner women. As we know the hadith became the second source of Islamic law after the Quran, be it in the form of words, deeds, statutes or the nature of the Prophet Saw.
Could the Messenger of Allah Hate Women?
The question now is, is it possible that Prophet Saw as a peace-loving religious-bearing Prophet and Apostle has a misogynistic nature? Or is it indeed their understanding that is wrong in understanding the hadith of Prophet Saw?
Consequently, the hadith that effectively hates and desecrates women is accused of being a misogynistic hadith and considers the hadith to be dhaif (weak) and even maudhu’ (false) hadith, which even though the hadith is already contained in the book of Sahih al-Bukhari which is recognized as the second most authentic book after the Quran. How does it go? Let’s discuss it while having a coffee!
Rasulullah Saw himself, if anyone understands as a misogynistic figure (hating women), this is something that is impossible to happen to a Rasulallah Saw and there is not a single hadith, except really hadith maudhu’, which shows that there are words, deeds, and decrees of Prophet Saw that show hatred towards women.
Eliminating Sahih Hadith for Hating Women
Astounding is what Fatima Mernissi (the first Muslim Feminist figure to raise the issue of misogynistic hadith) understood, in her book The Veil and Male Elite, she assumed there was a misogynistic hadith in Islamic literature and that the hadith should be omitted from Islamic literature, even though the hadith has been confirmed to be sourced from the Prophet Saw (shahih).
This means that Mernissi indirectly eliminates hadiths that he considers misogynistic, even though they are found in valid sources such as shahih al-Bukhari and Shahih Muslim.
Hadith of Women’s Leadership
One of the hadiths that is considered misogynistic is related to women’s leadership. This hadith reads:
عن أبي بكرة قال لقد نفعني الله بكلمة أيام الجمل لما بلغ النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم أن فارسا ملكوا ابنة كسرى قال لن يفلح قوم ولوا أمرهم امرأة
“From Abu Bakrah says; during the days of the jamal war, I have learned a lesson from the message to the Prophet, precisely when he knew that the Persian kingdom appointed the daughter of Kisra as king, he immediately said: It will not be good for a people to appoint women as leaders of their affairs”. (HR. al-Bukhari).
If we understand it textually, it is true that the hadith above seems misogynistic as is Mernissi’s understanding that it is as if women should not be leaders. Fatima Mernissi herself has deep suspicions regarding the hadith above.
Therefore, he also asked some questions about the hadith, namely who was the first author of this hadith?, where, when, why and to whom is this hadith narrated? These are the epistemological questions that Mernissi asked regarding the hadith above.
Exploring Abu Bakrah as company
If we look at the sanad path of the hadith, then Abu Bakrah was the first to narrate this hadith from the Prophet Saw. Some information from and about it is very important to be used as a source of information about this hadith. Abu Bakrah himself gave a statement that the background of Rasulallah Saw said this hadith was after knowing that after the death of Kisra, it was Kisra’s daughter who led the Persian nation.
Departing from this information, Mernissi then traced more about the history of the Persians, especially those closely related to the information from Abu Bakrah earlier.
In 628 AD, the Roman Emperor Heraklius invaded Persia and occupied Ctesiphon located very close to the Sassanid capital, and at that time Khulasraw Pavis, king of Persia was killed. After that, Persia experienced a period of turmoil especially after the son of Khusraw died. In this situation many people claimed the right to the Sassanid throne, including two women.
The latter part of the historical record, which Mernissi suspects, is closely related to Abu Bakrah’s remarks at the beginning.
It seems that the camel war, which at that time Ali’s forces managed to defeat Aisyah’s army and caused many Muslims to die, reminded Abu Bakrah of the hadith about women’s leadership. It is in this context that Abu Bakrah re-narrates the hadith about women’s leadership that the Prophet Saw once said.
Examining Abu Bakrah’s Credibility
As for the assessment of Abu Bakrah’s credibility, Mernissi is different from the classical hadith reviewers. Abu Bakrah’s inherent friend status did not undo Mernissi’s intention to investigate. Mernissi then stated that a number of hadith scholars from the beginning had been suspicious of Abu Bakrah’s paternal lineage, as it was not very convincing (unclear).
Caliph Umar ibn al-Khattab once punished Abu Bakrah for ever giving false testimony in the had qadzaf. For the second factor, Mernissi reverted the case to the rules that had been established by the fuqaha, precisely Imam Malik about the validity of a hadith scholar.
It states that Imam Malik rejects hadith practitioners who have lied, even in the simplest way, i.e. lying to others in everyday life even though it is not related to religious science. Based on this rule, Mernissi concluded that Abu Bakrah was a rejected scholar and that his hadith was unacceptable.
In fact, according to the hadith experts themselves, the historical hadith of Abu Bakrah includes the hadith that is shahih, both the sanad and matan paths. In general, scholars of hadith such as Abu Hazm and Muhammad al-Ghazali, after going through takhrij research, they agreed on the validity of the hadith about the leadership of women in Abu Bakrah’s history, both the sanad and matannya paths, as well as in the book of Fath al-Bari mentions a lot about the hadith.
Examining the Truth
Some critics of the hadith, criticized Mernissi’s understanding of rawi Abu Bakrah. They explained; it is true the fact that Abu Bakrah was once caned by Umar bin Khattab in connection with his case accused of giving false testimony in the had of qadzaf.
Actually, Abu Bakrah did not give false testimony, but he lacked witnesses only in the had qadzaf. As we know, the witnesses needed in the case of seeing another person commit adultery are four witnesses. While Abu Bakrah lacked witnesses, so he accepted the consequence of being caned by caliph Umar. Thus his accusation Mernissi is denied the existence of this truth.
Indonesian Muslim feminists, in understanding this hadith, put forward different statements. Hussein Muhammad stated that this hadith was expressed in the form of a framework of notification or information, not in the form of legal legitimacy. So this hadith cannot be understood as it is, but it must be understood from its essence and cannot be generalized for all cases, because this hadith is specific to the case of the Persians.
Because the reality was that at that time the Persian nation was on the verge of collapse and when led by women who did not have the capability and power in leadership, finally the Persian empire was completely destroyed.
As for the current context, yes, it is not a problem for a woman to be a leader. As long as she has the capabilities, skills, power and various elements that support her to become a leader. This means that the correct understanding of the hadith must