Why Does It Feel Like Allah Favors Men Over Women?

05 February, 2020
Q Assalamu alaikum,I have tried to convince myself for many years that there is a wisdom behind polygamy, and that I should accept it, but I have reached my boiling point and I cannot stand the concept. It is really turning me away from Islam, despite years of trying to remain faithful that Allah does not wrong anybody.I try to console myself that I dont even have to be in such a marriage, but then I hear things about hoors and its causing me so much distress. I really feel like this world and the next was designed to suit men.Whenever I see a question about polygamy, the answer almost always includes something along the lines of "men can love more than one person" or "why deny them their desires". How is that fair to the woman? Yes, I know men can love more than one person, but so can women. We are able to restrict ourselves and are limited to one man, so why are men allowed to hurt women in this way?What horrifies me is how when a woman asks something about how to deal when her husband drops the bomb that he is marrying another, the answer never adresses how wrong it is to just marry another for no reason. They are completely on the man's side and just give the woman advice for how to deal with it. I hate everything about it, and its making me loathe men. It wouldn't be a problem if the man talked about it before marriage, but apparantly they dont even have to do this.I'm sorry if I seem angry it is but this has been bothering me a lot, and I am starting to hate my own religion as a result, and I dont want to. This makes me want to remain single forever. I do not want to love someone who wont reciprocate. I don't want a quarter of his heart.How do I make sense of all of this?

Answer

Short Answer:  Why Does It Feel Like Allah Favors Men More Than Women? First of all, I would like to gently remind all of our readers that Allah (SWT) is not a misogynist. Unfortunately, there are some people out there who propagate a very biased rendition of theology to women in hopes of getting us to feel inferior.  The general ruling for polygamy in the modern age is largely impermissible. Marriage to more than one wife where there will be an inequality is unjust.  Women will have their fair share of whatever they desire in the Afterlife. They will not receive a lesser reward than men.

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Walaikum Asalaam wa Rahmatullah, 

Thank you for contacting us at AboutIslam. I feel remorse that we as a religious community have failed to help you feel supported as a woman. Every single point you brought up was vital and important to question. I feel thankful that our faith is one with answers.

Why Does It Feel Like Allah Favors Men Over Women?

First of all, I would like to gently remind all of our readers that Allah (SWT) is not a misogynist. Unfortunately, there are some people out there who propagate a very biased rendition of theology to women in hopes of getting us to feel inferior.

They may wear religious clothing, do their daily obligations, and perhaps still fall short on their treatment of women. This is a moral deficiency they need to work on. (May Allah protect us from such people.)

On Polygamy

When Allah (SWT) said in Surah An-Nisa Ayah 3,

“And if you fear that you will not deal justly with the orphan girls, then marry those that please you of [other] women, two or three or four. But if you fear that you will not be just, then [marry only] one…”

It is important to note that it means unequivocally that marriage to more than one wife where there will be an inequality is unjust. The general ruling for polygamy in the modern age is largely impermissible.

There is going to be clear, inevitable damage that comes from most polygamous marriages in the current age, particularly if a person (or both people) are not accustomed to healthy polygamous practices.

Allah (SWT) addresses both men and women in the Quran when addressing the propensity for one’s intimate desires and He (SWT) does not make extra excuses for men. Marriage is supposed to be healthy, compassionate, understanding, and anything that harms a believer is not encouraged. 

On Hoor Al-Ayn

The conversation on this particular topic in recent years has been extremely centered on men, but Allah (SWT) approaches Jannah differently. The Holy Quran says in Surah An-Nisa, Ayah 124,

“But those who do good—whether male or female—and have faith will enter Paradise and will never be wronged ˹even as much as˺ the speck on a date-stone.”

Women will have their fair share of whatever they desire in the Afterlife. They will not receive a lesser reward than men. In fact, there were women way back during the time of the Prophet who were also concerned that Allah valued men more than women. 

The female Companions were quite open about their religious concerns and would comfortably ask when they needed to something. There was one companion named Umm Umarah al-Ansariyyah, who went to the Prophet Muhammad and asked just like you about the rewards mentioned in the Qur’an. : “I see that everything is for the men, and I do not see anything being mentioned for the women.”

So the Quranic verse (33:35) was revealed:

“For Muslim men and women—for believing men and women, for devout men and women, for true men and women, for men and women who are patient and constant, for men and women who humble themselves, for men and women who give in Charity, for men and women who fast (and deny themselves), for men and women who guard their chastity, and for men and women who engage much in Allah’s praise, – for them has Allah prepared forgiveness and great reward.”  (al-Tirmidhi)

And Allah knows best.

I hope this helps.

Salam and please keep in touch.

Please continue feeding your curiosity, and find more info in the following links:

“I Won’t Let My Husband Have a Second Wife!”

Is Polygamy Justified Today?

Break The Mold: Muslim Women Rise and Reclaim Your Status!