Book: A Probe Into The History Of Hadith, Author: Allamah Murtaza Al-Askari, Original Publisher: Islamic Seminary Publications, From pp.118-126


Table Of Contents

Ijtihad of the Caliphs Concerning Two Mutahs

During the Days of Abu Bakr and ‘Umar

During the Days of 'Uthman

During the Days of Mu'awiyah

During the Days of Ibn Zubayr

Mutah (Fixed-Time) Marriage

Mutah In the Sunnah  


Ijtihad of the Caliphs Concerning Two Mutahs

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In the pre-Islamic days the Quraish had forbidden 'umrah tamattu’ during the pilgrimage months and declared it to be one of the worst kinds of immorality. The Holy Prophet did not agree with them. He performed four 'Umrahs, and all of them during the pilgrimage months.  

In respect of 'umrah performed along with hajj but with separate ihram, the Holy Qur'an says: Whosoever profits by combining 'umrah with hajj.

(Surah al-Baqarah, 2:196)  

The Holy Prophet himself set an example on the occasion of the Farewell Pilgrimage when he performed hajj and 'umrah together along with a very large number of his followers.  

When he reached the valley of al-'Atiq, he said to 'Umar: “Jibra'il has come to me and has said that 'umrah has forever been made a part of hajj. 26  

At 'Asfan he said to Suraqah: “‘Umrah has been incorporated in this hajj of yours. When you have circumambulated the Ka'bah and walked between Safa and Marwah, you will be released from the restrictions imposed by ihram, but those of you who have a sacrificial animal with them.”  

At Saraf he conveyed the same instruction to all his companions. In the valley of Makkah he again repeated it. Thus he gradually prepared his companions for the final step. During his last round of circumambulation he ordered all those, who had formally resolved to perform hajj at the time of wearing ihram, to convert their hajj into ‘umrah provided they did not have with them any sacrificial animals. He added:  

“If I myself had anticipated the position, I would not have brought a sacrificial animal with me. But as I have, the acts which became unlawful because of ihram cannot become lawful now till the animals reach their due place.” Suraqah said: “Is this order of ‘umrah for this year only or for ever?” “It is for ever”, said the Prophet. He joined his two fingers one in other and said: “‘Umrah has been incorporated in hajj till the Day of Resurrection.”  

This decision was not liked by those who believed 'umrah to be forbidden during the months of pilgrimage. They said: “Prophet of Allah! What has become lawful?” “Everything”, said the Prophet. “This was 'umrah which we have enjoyed. He who hasn't a sacrificial animal, should get out of the state of ihram, for 'umrah has been incorporated in hajj till the Day of Resurrection”. He added: “Stay without ihram till the eighth of Zilhajjah. On that day make a formal resolve about hajj, and regard what you have done as a mutah (first ‘umrah and then hajj with a respite between them)”. “How can we regard it as a mutah when we intended it to be a hajj?” said they. The Prophet said: “Do as I tell you. Get out of the state of ihram. Enjoy women.”  

It was followed by criticisms all round. It was reported to the Prophet that the people were saying: “Only five days are left before we go to 'Arafat and we have been told to enjoy women. Shall we go there in a state of impurity?” When such reports were conveyed to him again and again, the Prophet became furious. 'Ayishah said: “Who has displeased you? Let him go to hell.” The Prophet said: “Why should I not feel angry? I have given an instruction and it is not being followed.” 27  

Then he addressed his companions and said: “I have heard that some people say so and so. By Allah! I am more virtuous and God-fearing than you are.”  

Some people said: “Prophet of Allah! Shall we go to Mina in a state of impurity?” He said: “Yes, get out of the state of ihram, use perfume and have women. Do all that a person not in the state of ihram does. And on the eighth again enter into a state of ihram for hajj.  

‘Ayishah could not perform 'umrah before hajj because her periods were on. The Prophet ordered her to perform it later. He did not want her to go back after performing hajj only. 28  



During the Days of Abu Bakr and ‘Umar

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Abu Bakr performed hajj without 'umrah. 'Umar also did the same. He forbade the Muslims to prefix 'umrah to hajj with a separate ihram and asked them to perform hajj during the months of pilgrimage, and 'umrah during other months. In support of his opinion he cited the Qur’anic verse: “And accomplish the pilgrimage and 'umrah for Allah.” He said that the more proper way of accomplishing each of hajj and 'umrah is to keep them separate. He also quoted the action of the Holy Prophet that he did not get out of the state of ihram till he had slaughtered his sacrificial animals.  

When Imam 'Ali said to him: “He who performed mutah, followed the Qur'an and the practice of the Prophet”, 'Umar said: “By Allah! I forbid you to perform 'umrah, though it is recommended in the Qur'an and I myself have performed it along with the Holy Prophet.” He also said: “Two kinds of mutah were practised during the days of the Holy Prophet: mutah of hajj and mutah of women, but I forbid them and I will punish everyone who practices them.”  

He also said: “I don't like the people to indulge in sex under the trees and then go to perform hajj with dripping heads.” 29  

He said: “The people of Makkah have neither cultivation nor dairying. They depend for their prosperity on the pilgrims who come to them.”



During the Days of 'Uthman

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'Uthman said: “The most perfect way of performing hajj and 'umrah is not to perform them together in the months of pilgrimage. It would be better if you delay the 'umrah and visit the Ka'bah twice.”


Thereupon Imam 'Ali said: “Do you want to forbid a practice established by the Holy Prophet himself? This practice was in the interest of those who belong to remote places and lack facilities of visiting Makkah twice.”  

Having said that Imam 'Ali made a formal resolve to perform hajj and 'umrah. 'Uthman denied that he had forbidden the performance of 'umrah during the hajj season. He said that he had only expressed an opinion. 30  

According to another report Imam 'Ali said: “Do you forbid mutah of hajj?” 'Uthman said: “Yes”. “Have you not heard that the Holy Prophet practised it?’ said the Imam. “Yes, I have”, said 'Uthman. Thereupon Imam 'Ali and his companions recited talbiyah for 'umrah.  

According to a third report Imam 'Ali said: “What do you mean by forbidding what the Holy Prophet himself did?” 'Uthman said: “Leave it.” “I can't leave it,” said 'Ali. Then he formally made a resolve to perform 'umrah and hajj.  

Still another report says that 'Uthman said: “Will you be doing what I am telling you not to do?” “I am not going to abandon the practice of the Holy Prophet”, said 'Ali. “Let anybody say anything”. 31  

'Uthman ordered all those who were not holding such a high position as Imam 'Ali and still dared to recite talbiyah for 'umrah, to be beaten and shaved. 32



During the Days of Mu'awiyah

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Since the time of Mu'awiyah the practice of 'Umar became an authority. Once Sa’d bin Abi Waqas said to Mu'awiyah that it was a good thing to combine 'umrah with hajj. Mu’awiyah said that 'Umar was against that.  

Since that time fabrication of tradition started to justify the action of 'Umar. Mu'awiyah said that the Holy Prophet had forbidden the combination of hajj and 'umrah. The companions objected to his statement, but he continued to insist on it.  

It appears that at that time terrorization was rampant. A companion of the Prophet, 'Imran bin Hasin after taking a pledge of secrecy confided from his death-bed to a person whom he trusted that the Holy Prophet combined hajj and ‘umrah, that he did not subsequently forbid that practice, nor was it abrogated by the Qur'an. Only after the death of the Prophet a particular man 'Umar ibn Khattab said whatever he liked. 33



During the Days of Ibn Zubayr

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The Zubayrites opposed the mutah of hajj and in their support cited the practice of Abu Bakr and 'Umar. They said to Ibn 'Abbas: “How long will you be misleading the people? You urge the people to perform 'umrah during the months of hajj, whereas Abu Bakr was against that.' Ibn ‘Abbas said: “I fear these people will be ruined. I say that the Holy Prophet said so and so and they say that Abu Bakr and 'Umar were against that.” 'Urwah fabricated a tradition and falsely imputed to the Prophet and his companions that on the occasion of Farewell Pilgrimage (Hijjatul Widda') and other occasions, they performed hajj only. He cited his mother and aunt as his authority, but they said that they had performed 'umrah also at the time of the Farewell Pilgrimage.  

The followers of the School of the Caliphs continued to produce tradition in their support. They reported that while at Rabzah Abu Zar said: “We, the companions were especially allowed to combine 'umrah and hajj. Others are not permitted to follow this example.”34  

It was imputed to Imam 'Ali that he advised his son Muhammad bin Hanafiyyah to perform hajj only without ‘umrah. 35  

Some companions of the Prophet told 'Umar while he was in his death-bed that the Holy Prophet had forbidden mutah of hajj. 36  

In spite of all this, all Muslims could not implement the ijtihad of 'Umar, because it was difficult for them to come from distant places to Makkah twice, once for hajj only and once for ‘umrah only. So they continued to combine 'umrah and hajj. Some of them got out of the state of ihram after 'umrah and others maintained their ihram till they completed hajj.  

The views of the followers of the School of the Caliphs vary. The Imam of the Hanbalites, Ahmad ibn Hanbal has followed the Prophet's practice in this respect. Some others say that the Caliphs recommended that hajj should be performed separately. Still others are of the view that the question is a matter of discretion.  



Mutah (Fixed-Time) Marriage

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The Qur'an says: Then as to those by whom you take pleasure (by contracting Mutah marriage) give them their appointed dowers. (Surah an-Nisa’, 6:24)  

According to the copy of the Qur'an held by Ibn 'Abbas, the verse ran as follows:  

Then as to those by whom you take pleasure for a pre­determined period....  

The same is the reading of Ubay bin Ka'b, Ibn 'Abbas, Sa‘id bin Jubayr and al‑Suddi. Qatadah and Mujahid also have the same version. They actually add the phrase, 'for a predeter­mined period' to explain the import of the verse.



Mutah In the Sunnah

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Ibn Mas‘ud said: “The Holy Prophet allowed us to marry a woman for a limited period in exchange for a piece of cloth.” Then he recited the verse: 0 you who believe: Make not unlawful the pure things which Allah has made lawful for you. (Surah al-Ma'idah, 5:87) 37  

Jabir and Salmah bin Akwa' said: “It was announced publicly that the Holy Prophet had allowed us to contract Mutah marriage.” 38  

Sabrah al-Juhani said: “The Holy Prophet allowed us to contract Mutah marriage. Accordingly I married a woman belonging to the tribe of Bani 'Amir. I stayed with her for three days. Then the Holy Prophet said that someone who had such women with him should let them go.” 39  

Abu Sa’id al-Khidri said: “During the days of the Holy Prophet we used to contract Mutah marriage in exchange for a piece of cloth.” 40  

Jabir said: “We used to contract Mutah marriage in ex­change for a handful of dates and flour during the days of the Holy Prophet, Abu Bakr and 'Umar. It was only during the last days of the Caliphate of 'Umar that it so happened that 'Amr ibn Hurayth contracted Mutah marriage with a woman and she became pregnant. When the report of this incident reached 'Umar he banned Mutah marriage”. 41  

According to another report, 'Umar said: “How is it that people contract Mutah marriage without witnesses. In future if any body did that, I would punish him.” 42  

Once he said: “If you had done that, I would have stoned you to death.” 43  

On another occasion he said: “If a man is brought to me with the report that he has contracted Mutah marriage, I will stone him to death, if he is already married, and, award him lashes if he is unmarried”. 44  

Having been banned by 'Umar, Mutah became forbidden in the Muslim society. 'Umar never allowed it afterwards.  

‘Imran bin Sawdah once said to him: “I would like to offer you a piece of advice.”  

“Yes, you are welcome to do that”, said 'Umar.  

'Imran said: “People are criticizing you because you have banned 'umrah during the months of hajj. That was neither done by the Holy Prophet nor by Abu Bakr, in fact it is lawful.”  

“I am right. If people were allowed to perform 'umrah during the months of pilgrimage, Makkah would be desolated”, said 'Umar.  

Then 'Imran continued: “People say that you have banned Mutah marriage also. That was a concession given to us by Allah. We could contract a Mutah marriage in exchange for a handful of dates and terminate it after three nights.”  

'Umar said: “The Holy Prophet allowed that during a period of emergency. Now that period is over. If someone wants to contract a regular marriage in exchange for a handful of dates he can terminate it after three nights by means of a divorce.” 45  

We wonder what the Caliph meant. Did he mean that the husband and wife at the time of contract should agree to separation after three nights? If so, this contract would automatically be Mutah. Or did he mean that the husband should have a secret intention of separation after three nights. In that case such an intention would amount to fraud and betraying.  

Anyhow, this dialogue and other reports in this respect clearly show that the tradition to the affect that the Holy Prophet himself banned Mutah marriage and asked the people not to combine hajj and 'umrah, are all stories concocted with a view to justifying the Caliph's action. This was regarded as a meritorious act in the same way as the fabrication of tradition in respect of the reward of the recitation of various Surahs (Chapters) of the Holy Qur'an.  

This is borne out by the fact that Imam 'Ali, Ibn 'Abbas, Ibn Mas'ud, Abu Sa'd, Jabir, Salamah, Ma'bad and many other companions maintained that Mutah was lawful. 

The same was the view of such successors of the companions as Taus, 'Ata', Sa'id bin Jubayr as well as all the jurists of Makkah and Yemen. 46  

Imam 'Ali and Ibn 'Abbas are reported to have said: “Had not 'Umar banned Mutah none but a wicked person would have indulged in illicit sexual relations.” 47  

The scholars of the School of the Caliphs have justified the action of 'Umar on the ground that it was his ijtihad.  

This shows that the reports made available about the prohibition of mutah are spurious and false.  

The gist of the matter is that both the Mutahs were allowed by the Islamic law and had the approval of the Holy Prophet. It was only 'Umar who prohibited them, and his prohibition was accepted as a religious law, tradition were fabricated in its support and it was described as ijtihad to justify it.  

26 Sahih Bukhari, Sunan Abi Daud, Sunan ibn Majah, Sunan Bayhaqi chap. Kitabul Hajj

27 Sahih Muslim, p.879, Chap, Wujuhul Ehram, Hadith: 130; Sunan Bayhaqi, Vol. V, p.19; Sunan Ibn   Majah, p.993, Chap. Faskhul Hajj; Musnad Ahmad Hanbal Vol. IV, p.286; Majma’uz Zawa’id, Vol. III, p.233; Zadul Ma’ad, Vol. I p.247; Manahatul Ma’bud, Hadith: 1051, al-Muntaqa Hadith 2478.

28 Sahih Muslim p.873, Chap. Wujuhul Ehram; Sunan Abi Daud Vol. II, p.154; Sunan Ibn Majah, Hadith: 2963.

29 Sahih Muslim, p.896, Hadith: 157; Musnad Tiyalasi, Vol. II, p.70, Hadith: 516; Musnad Ahmad Hanbal Vol. I, pp.49-50; Sunan Nisa’i, Kitabul Hajj, Chap. Tamattu; Kanzul Ummal, Vol. II, p.16; Sunan Bayhaqi, Vol. V, p.20; Sunan Ibn Majah, Hadith: 2979

30 Musnad Ahmad Hanbal Vol. I, p.92, Hadith: 707; Zakha’irul Mawarith, p.416

31 Sahih Bukhari Vol. I, p.190; Sunan Nisa’i Vol. II, p.15; Sunan Bayhaqi, Vol. IV, p.353; Tarikh Ibn Kathir; Vol. V, pp.136, 139 etc.

32 Ibn Hazm, Vol. VII, p.107.

33 Sahih Bukhari Vol. I, p. 190, Kitabul Hajj Chap. Tamattu; Sahih Muslim, Hadith: 165-166; Musnad Ahmad Hanbal, Vol. IV, p.434; Sunan Darami, Vol. II, p.25.

34 Musnad Ahmad Hanbal, Vol. I, p.252, Hadith: 2277; Zadul Ma’ad, Vol. I, p.257; Taqribut Tahzib Vol. II p.19

35 Sunan Bayhaqi, Vol. V, p.5, Chap. Iktarul Ifrad.

36 Sunan Bayhaqi, Vol. V, p.19; Sunan Abi Daud, Vol. II, Hadith: 1793.

37 Sahih Bukhari Vol. III, p.85, Chap. 9; Sahih Muslim, p. 1022, Kitabun Nikah, Hadith: 1404.

38 Sahih Bukhari, Vol. III, p.163; Sahih Muslim, p.1024, Kitabun Nikah, Hadith: 1406; Sunan Bayhaqi, Vol. 7, pp.202-203; Musnad Ahmad Hanbal, Vol. III, p.405.

39 Sahih Muslim, p.1024, Kitabun Nikah, Hadith: 1406; Sunan Bayhaqi Vol. VII, pp.202-203; Musnad Ahmad Hanbal Vol. III, p.405.

40Musnad Tayalasi, Hadith: 637.

41 Al Musannaf by Abdur Razzaq, Vol. VII, p.496, Chap. Mutah.

42 Al Musannaf Vol. VII, p.501, Chap. Mutah.

43 Mota Malik p.542, Hadith 42, Chap. Nikah Mutah; Sunan Bayhaqi Vol. VII, p.206; Durr-e-Manthur Suyuti, Vol. II, p.141.

44 Al Musannaf Ibn Abi Shaybah, Vol. IV, p.293.

45 Tarikh Tabari, Vol. V, p.32.

46 Al Mahalli Ibn Jazm, Vol. IX, pp.51-52, Article: 1852; Sharh Nudi, Vol. XI, p.186.

47 Bidayatul Mujtahid.