Do you think it's compulsory upon the wife to do the housework ?!! i found the topic to be controversial among the scholars , and i want to know your personal convictions about the issue ?
what about the task of being a mother taking care of her children ?
what if she has a career ? or studying for an academic degree ?
why do many men -if not most of them- consider it humiliating to share the housework with their wives ? and does it really have a religious basis or just cultural ?
The Holy Quran speaking about the responsibilities of Husband and Wife states:
[4:35] Men are guardians over women because Allah has made some of them excel others, and because they (men) spend of their wealth. So virtuous women are those who are obedient, and guard the secrets of their husbands with Allahs protection. And as for those on whose part you fear disobedience, admonish them and leave them alone in their beds, and chastise them. Then if they obey you, seek not a way against them. Surely, Allah is High, Great.
[2:229]...And they (the women) have rights similar to those (of men) over them in equity; but men have a rank above them. And Allah is Mighty, Wise.
According to the teachings of Islam both Men and Women have equal personal rights. The only superiority allowed for a Husband is in the case discipline as highlighted in verse 4:35. Even this right is strictly controlled and only available when the Wife exceeds all limits and drives the family towards destruction. In such an extreme case Allah (swt) has granted the Husband this right out of wisdom that in extreme circumstances a family can be saved.
To understand this better it is fundamental to first understand the importance Islam lays on the family structure. The teachings of the Holy Quran lay extreme stress on developing a positive family structure which provides a healthy environment for raising a child. This does not only require physical protection but also mental protection. An environment where the parents drink, fight, curse, chase after wealth, cheat, etc is now widely accepted as an environment perfectly suited to destroy a child's future. A divorce is one of the leading cause of trouble in raising children. In modern western society, divorce, drugs, and alcohol is rampant and leading to a society of troubled youth.
Why does Islam concentrate so much on the family structure? The reason is because the family structure is the fundamental building block of the structure of society. This is because the fundamental purpose of a family is to be able to provide an environment to raise a good believing child. Unless this purpose is achieved, for a family blessed with a child, the family has failed. Since the children of today are the adults of tomorrow, failed families result in a society full of immoral adults.
Keeping the prior explanation in mind I would now try to address your question. Islam teaches that Allah (swt) has equipped every creation with all the faculties they would need. The following verse highlights this point:
[20:51] He said, Our Lord is He Who gave unto everything its proper form and then guided it to its proper function.
If you ponder over this verse you will note that the mother in all creation is also equipped with special faculties for raising a child. Whether they are birds, cats, bears, ducks, etc. Similarly, the father is also equipped with special faculties of protecting the family and providing the comfort and support to the mother so that she can safely raise a child.
Speaking on this the Holy Quran has drawn the similitude to a garment.
These verses signify that marriage is meant for the attainment of peace of mind and mutual love and affection. Allah has also said that marriage is the means of attaining piety and of guarding one's chastity. He says:
....They are a sort of garment for you and you are a sort of garment for them.... (2:188)
The Arabic word `libas' (garment) means a thing which covers another thing. And according to the Holy Quran, a garment serves a threefold purpose: Allah says:
O children of Adam, WE have indeed send down to you raiment to cover you nakedness and to be a means of adornment... (7:27)
And then He says:
....HE has made for you garments which protect you from heat, and coats of mail which protect you in your wars.... (16:82)
Another use of our dress is that it provides protection against heat and cold. Since the Holy Quran has used the word 'garment' in respect of both the husband and wife, it proves beyond any shadow of doubt that they hold an equal status; their rights and duties are identical in respect of each other; and both are bound to fulfil their obligations to each other. When God declares each of them to be a garment for the other, He wishes it be known how they should discharge their duties towards each other which are as follows:
Paradise on Earth
- To cover up one another's weaknesses and shortcomings from others.
- To act as an adornment and embellishment for one another.
- Just as clothes protect us from the severity and inclemency of the weather, so in the same way the wife and the husband should stick fast to each other through thick and at no time should they fall apart in adverse circumstances. Each should serve as a rock of support to the other
I will try to conclude this and may ad some more later as this is getting quite long. What I intend to point out is that the mother is the best person to raise a Child, which is why Islam teaches that a Wife should ideally be a House Wife. But this doesn't mean she loses her right to an education. This is a fair right that can be achieved while not letting go of her family responsibilities. It is the duty of the Husband to help allow her to get an education, situation permitting. If the career allows her to raise a child without risking their upbringing she may pursue a career. Realistically this is unlikely especially when children are young, which is why sometimes we must sacrifice worldly pleasures and pursuits in exchange for a righteous and blessed family.