When I excitedly ordered this book, I already had four books to finish (by now I have already read three of them; the last one is a leisure read so it’s ok to slow down and indulge). I can’t even remember whether I specifically searched for this book from Amazon, or it appeared during my search for other books.
This book is about Prophet Muhammad’s (SAW) beloved wife, Saidatina Khadija (RA). I have always wanted to know more about her, but all this while I knew a little. Muslim women know that she is THE wife, THE woman to look up to, to emulate. Their love story is legendary and you will never find any other like theirs, ever, on this whole wide world.
The book was not as I expected, although I do not mean it in a negative light. I thought the book is like an encyclopaedia about her, with hard cover and thickness of about 200 pages. Having expected that, I did wonder how I was going to finish reading it. The price is quite cheap for such a precious book, priced at around £6.
It turned out to be a thin paperback. When it arrived, I thought, no wonder it’s cheap. Well, it’s entirely my fault that I did not check with Amazon the details of the book. It was good, though, because there’s more chance that I could read it cover to cover (which I did).
My second expectation was I thought it’s written like a textbook, like many other Islamic books. Again, I was wrong. It was written in a narrative, like a story book, so it was easier to read and understand. It made reading faster; I managed to finish the book within three sittings (in between family and work obligations). Reflection of the contents came later.
Yes, the book is written as a narration of Khadija’s life, and Prophet Muhammad’s (SAW) life after hear demise. It started with an introduction about her background and her family tree, and proceeded to how she got to know about our beloved Prophet.
Things that I learnt from the book:
(1) Marriage is about companionship
Nowhere in the book is written that the secret to a happy man is through his stomach.
Nowhere in the book said that Khadija was a great cook (although I believe that she’d do her best in everything that she prepared for her beloved husband).
The recurrent theme in the book was how loyal she was to Prophet Muhammad’s (SAW) throughout their life together. She was his pillar of strength, being there for him no matter how difficult it became.
She always gave beautiful words of encouragement and support whenever he came to her for comfort.
Marriage is about facing this difficult life together. Their sons passed away when they were infants. Instead of breaking them, they grew stronger as life throws another challenge at them.
(2) There’s more to being a wife apart from staying at home and cook
Growing in an Asian culture in which the women are expected to be the queen of the kitchen, and to safeguard the husband’s house, this book showed a different perspective of marriage.
Khadija RA was a successful businesswoman long before she met the Prophet. She continued to be one even after they were married. Her income helped with the spread of Islam in its early years.
While I do feel that I’d prefer to be a stay-at-home mother than out the whole day working, I believe there’s nothing wrong with working to help the family. Khadija RA showed us that we could do both, even from more than a thousand years ago.
(3) He has his ambitions, and he needs your support
No matter how strong men show themselves to be, I’m pretty sure they’d appreciate it very much if you show your support in whatever he strives for.
There was a time when Prophet Muhammad (SAW) was very concerned with the state of the people around him. At that time, human beings were at a chaotic state. Lies, murder and war were considered normal, their minds and souls were corrupt, little girls were being murdered simply for being girls.
He often left the city of Mecca for the peace and quiet of the Cave of Hira to reflect on the condition of his people, trying to find enlightenment on how to set things right.
His faithful wife, Khadija, did not stop him from going away. She knew he wanted some peace of mind to think of the future of his people. She would send some provisions to the cave; sometimes through a messenger, but sometimes she’d go on her own.
She was the first Muslim; her faith comes from deep inside her soul, believing that there is no God but Allah, and that Prophet Muhammad (SAW) is His Messenger.
The same goes to us. These days we have our own dreams and ambitions, and we’d want to achieve those. It is human nature to need support from other people, especially those very close to us. It would hurt more if our loved ones fail to show their faith and support, as compared to complete strangers.
(4) Be good, then good will come to you
Many men would want a wife like her, and women would want a husband like Prophet Muhammad (SAW).
However it’s only going to remain a dream if we do not work for it.
How do we work for it, though?
“A good man is for a good woman.” If you want a great husband or wife, you need to strive to be a better person everyday. It is only fair that we become the kind of person we want to see in others. It starts from ourselves, and the world will become a better place to live in.
One doesn’t need to be a wife to emulate Khadija. We could all learn from her fierce loyalty, her supportive nature and her beautiful words that could soothe anyone’s worries about this life. We could strive to be stronger in substance to be able to face this life in peace, even when the world around us is an utter chaos.