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Author Topic: Who can be Wali?  (Read 4242 times)

cinders

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Who can be Wali?
« on: Sep. 28, 2010, 01:42 AM »

Salam all,
just wondering if anyone can answer exactly as the title of post says. If a sister is looking into a prospective husband, can she take her friend or sister during the very first meeting to chaperone? To see if she likes the look of him even lol,  before going to family,

Or

does she have to take male family member?

& also, what if she has no male family members? Or she is a revert & her siblings & parents are not Muslim? What then?

Jazakallah in advance. 
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Al-Qamar

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Re: Who can be Wali?
« Reply #1 on: Sep. 28, 2010, 09:11 AM »

Assalamu alaykum,

Firstly, let me point out that the wali is the last line of defence for the sister in question. He is not supposed to be seen as a barrier or a burden, but rather someone who's in the girl's corner, looking out for her interests and taking her side. Can you imagine if a guy met a sister alone (or even accompanied with another sister)? He could just turn on the smooth-talking and charm them both. The point of the wali is that he sees past all of that... where the prospective husband is fluttering his eyelids and saying to the girl "I love you" (then she swoons and faints), the wali says "yeah yeah yeah, lets move past that mushy stuff... do you have a job/house/car/etc..." He keeps it real.

Guys understand the language of guys, women generally don't (and it works vice-versa) which is why the wali needs to be a guy (as well as the shariah reasons of course), so for this reason I would recommend the sister in question here takes a guy with her, not a sister.

In terms of waliship, the wali is the father first (i.e. father, then grandfather if the father isn't available), then sons of the sister in question if she has any, then full brothers... and I can't remember the exact order after that. But the wali can also transfer waliship to whomever he likes to act as an agent.

As mentioned before, the wali needs to be male, and he needs to be Muslim (or rather, the same religion as the girl, so if she's a chaste Christian, her Christian father can be a wali), and he needs to be free (i.e. he's not a slave) and be of sound mind.

If a sister has no wali, I would recommend she goes to the local masjid and make an appoint with the imaam who can act as a wali insha'Allah if she has no-one. She should try to find one of good reputable character (not saying imaams in general aren't, but some may not exercise the responsibility as efficiently as others... and if the guy is known to the imaam, he may already be inclined towards the guy so it's important the wali is loyal to her as he's supposed to be her guardian, not his faciliatator).
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cinders

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Re: Who can be Wali?
« Reply #2 on: Sep. 28, 2010, 10:18 AM »

Wa'salam.

Taking on board what you've said, what if sis in Question has a meeting with the prospective guy with a another sister or even 'if' she meets him alone due to the Wali being quite far away say, being naiive or ignorant. Does that mean she should not consider the guy because his character comes into question & also there are cultural differences?

Of course the sis would want barakah in whoever she marries. What if she notifies Wali after this initial meeting? Discuss. 
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Al-Qamar

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Re: Who can be Wali?
« Reply #3 on: Sep. 28, 2010, 11:44 AM »

Aside from the issues of being alone with a non-mahrem male, I would not advise a sister to see a potential husband by herself without taking a male along for the simple reason that she risks being charmed by the guy. After all, she is seeking marriage and may not see any apparent faults in the guy that another (independant) person would do. Also, guys understand guys far better than women do, it's far more difficult to pull the wool over our eyes (in theory...)

That said, if she did go and the guy turned up, I wouldn't question the guy's character too much, though one may ask him if he wants to marry a sister who turns up by herself. I did it once, and ended up marrying the girl... turned out to be a huge mistake and disaster, and my friends now laugh at me saying that it was not her who needed a wali for her protection, but rather me who needed someone to protect me from her (long story).

I'd also be curious as to why she's notifying the wali after the initial meeting... why not let the wali know first? If he's some distance away, let him speak to the prospective husband on the phone first? There are lots of ways around things if you just exercise a little though and patience.

Salaam
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Al-Qamar

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Re: Who can be Wali?
« Reply #4 on: Sep. 28, 2010, 11:50 AM »

Having thought about it some more (yes... thoughts did occur to me in the few seconds between posting the last reply and composing this one), it also depends on the sister's status.

If she has never been married before, and never known a guy before... then definately definately do not see the guy alone, she will have no idea what she's getting into.

If she has already been married before, she presumably is aware of what she's getting into. She knows the realities of marriage, and she probably knows what questions to ask and what things to look out for, so for her, I'd say it'd be less of a restriction.

In fact, the Prophet (saw) also mentions that the wali for a sister who isn't a virgin is that of command (i.e. rather than requesting her wali's permission to marry someone, she can command the wali to marry her to whomever she wishes, and he cannot refuse unless he finds corruption in the guy's manners or deen). The reason for this is because she's lost her 'innocence', she's pretty much free to make her own decisions regarding her future.
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cinders

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Re: Who can be Wali?
« Reply #5 on: Sep. 28, 2010, 01:01 PM »

Jazakallah bro for clearing that up. Alhamdulillah, the sis in Q... Her instincts told her she hadn't done anything wrong as she too is a divorcee. Her Wali made her feel guilty, but the prospective bro has been married previously. They both know realities of failed marriages. Undestandable from Wali, looking out for his sister & having only recently married himself. I guess her own bro is thinking he doesn't want this potential spouse smooth talking his sis cos she's recently divorced & may feel his sis is vulnerable.

Where in fact this sis is super cautious.
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Al-Qamar

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Re: Who can be Wali?
« Reply #6 on: Sep. 28, 2010, 02:39 PM »

No problem :)

But let me be clear though, I'm merely commenting on the practical aspect of going alone to meet a potential spouse, I never said it's ok by shariah standard (i.e. I'm not suggesting at all that she's done nothing wrong). By shariah standards, she should not have met him without a mahrem (not necessarily the wali himself). She'll only harm herself otherwise.

But khayr, what's done is done... :)
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cinders

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Re: Who can be Wali?
« Reply #7 on: Sep. 28, 2010, 07:48 PM »

Salam. The sis in Q has decided not to progress matters with the prospective spouse. I went with her, but turns out her Wali has said something which has made her realise no point pursuing matters with this bro
• they do not like the fact that guy is not from the same cultural background from her ( even though we all know that this is not Islam)
• the thing that tops the biscuit is basically because her first marriage failed & it was her choice, they
don't trust her to make another (bad) choice
• she doesn't trust her family's choice, because they would pick someone from same cultural background & they just don't seem her type because of the backward mentality
• she doesn't think it's fair on the guy either, that some of her family would NOT be able to accept him or anyone else from a different race
• also her Wali tried to preach about Islam & that a female friend is not enough, but then he's not prepared to come to the other side of country for a meeting, where nothing may come of it. Oh also the girl he married, she only had 1st meeting with him with her sister present & then family involvement

so it seems that double standards are the way with
her family. Secondly, it's sad but the sister has resigned herself to the fact she may never marry. She doesn't want to go against the family (even though this guy seemed decent, no really) however, they would not be happy with her choice & vice versa.

I feel sorry for her. Her family seemed to have resigned her to a life of loneliness. Her family have no clue. They're more worried about what certain family members will think with regards to this bro
or any other bro she may pick cos he probably won't be from their cultural background, but not of how prospective spouse maybe practicing & of good character. Her Wali & other members of family are supposed to be practicing, but certain things, you can't escape from... Like which family you were born in... 
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average_muslim_guy

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Re: Who can be Wali?
« Reply #8 on: Sep. 28, 2010, 08:02 PM »

one time or the other someone has to go against the stupid *family* VALUES.
I think it is time for this sister.
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Al-Qamar

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Re: Who can be Wali?
« Reply #9 on: Sep. 29, 2010, 11:37 AM »

Subhan'Allah... The nikah is one of (if not, the) oldest contract that Allah (swt) has estabished between men and women. The Qur'an makes it very clear that Hawwa was there with Adam (as) before they got to Jannah! Allah (swt) gave Adam (as) a wife, before he gave him Jannah! That's something really important to consider.

Anyway, in the interest of getting this sister married, insha'Allah, let's clarify some things.

Firstly, the wali does not actually need to meet the prospective husband in question. The wali's permission is only required for approval of the marriage (i.e. to make the marriage contract). So if he doesn't want to travel to meet the guy, no problem at all.

The sister shouldn't be meeting the guy alone for the sake that it's not appropriate for a man and woman who are not mahrem to one another to be alone together. And for the purpose of marriage, it's better she takes a male (mahrem) with her such that he can guard her interests, because he'll be able to understand better how the guy is thinking and he can give an alternative point of view if they want to discuss the meeting later. Men are generally harder to impress that women, so this advice shouldn't be taken lightly.

The wali can also assign an agent to act on his behalf. If there is someone local that the wali trusts, the wali can permit this person to act in his stead (in terms of waliship, so this person can even approve the marriage contract if need be, as he has this authority from the wali).

If the wali refuses to do this, and is generally acting in an inappropriate or unfair manner, then the sister concerned is able to remove the responsibility of waliship from him and transfer it to someone else of her choosing (especially since she's presumably no longer a virgin, and therefore master of her own affairs). The waliship is a responsibility... it's not a right! If the wali refuses to exercise this responsibility properly and fairly, he loses it! He can't hold the sister to ransom and essentially prevent her from turning down good matches, and effectively never get married.

So in this instance, if the sister wants, she can tell her wali that unless he does something to progress this situation (which is her right), she'll remove waliship from him and transfer it to someone else.


As a side point to note, you will come across many references to the hadith narrated by Aaishah (ra) regarding marriage without a wali being invalid. Whilst this hadith is generally considered authentic, one crucial fact is often missed out. When the scholars of fiqh study hadith, if there is a contradiction between what the narrator of the hadith said, and what they did, the scholars generally follow the actions since the narrator may be acting on further information that they didn't narrate.

Whilst Aaishah appears to have made that statement, she actually did perform a marriage for a sister without the permission of the wali because he wasn't around. When the wali returned, Aaishah (ra) informed the wali that the marriage had happened, and the wali could dissolve the marriage if he had grounds to do so (bear in mind, the Prophet (saw) said not to refuse suitors who have ikhlas and deen). Since the husband was both God-fearing and was strong in his deen, the father had no right to dissolve the marriage, Aaisha (ra) knew this and it was on this basis she performed the marriage (because essentially, if the wali was around, he wouldn't have been able to refuse permission anyway).


And my final point, perfection in speech and advice exists only for Allah, and Allah knows best. Anything correct I have said is from Allah, and any mistake I may have made is from shaytan.

I hope that helps

Assalamu alaykum wa rahmatuLlah

p.s. I would also advise the sister to pay special attention to the family's requirements of compatibility. Whilst she may not agree with the reason, ultimately family acceptance of the husband is crucial for the marriage to be a success. That doesn't mean she should walk away from this prospect, she can still try to convince the family insha'Allah to accept him, and treat their marriage fairly
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cinders

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Re: Who can be Wali?
« Reply #10 on: Sep. 29, 2010, 02:04 PM »

Assalamu alaykum,
I feel that maybe I've been a little unfair on sister's family & maybe sister has been too hasty with her decision also. Anyway, just to explain point further.. The family see it as their fault for not looking deeply into her previous husband's background ( he was not a good husband to her) & I feel that in a way, they kind of see it as though they were somewhat responsible for her failed marriage. They saw the signs as she was getting married, but chose to ignore them.. Believing that they were looking out for their sister's happiness. Ineveitably, her marriage failed. Just spoke to her sis today, & she's very upset about the whole situation with regards to her first marriage.

Her family are being protective of her, & her Wali is just asking her to approach this with caution. But alhamdulillah the prospective brother has accepted her decision with dignity & hasn't questioned why she has rejected him. Another thing, the sister has considered her situation.. Maybe right now is not the bet time for her to get married. Her personal situation is complicated. Maybe its just a case of 'right guy & wrong time'.

Allah SWT is the best of planners, Insh'Allah he has someone who is the most excellent of his slaves planned for her, at the right time.   
 
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cinders

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Re: Who can be Wali?
« Reply #11 on: Sep. 30, 2010, 04:06 PM »

Salam bro Al-Qamar.

Just would like to say Jazakallah for all the comments & input. I've mentioned all this to the sister in Q & she's gonna take on board what you have said & bear it in mind for future proposals etc Insh'Allah.
Please forgive me if I have said anything wrong or there's been misunderstanding on my part & please accept my humble apology.

PS; some things were misunderstood from my end. The sis didn't go alone. That was a hypo. But she did go with female friend & not male Mahrem. I feel I should make that clear.   
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Al-Qamar

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Re: Who can be Wali?
« Reply #12 on: Sep. 30, 2010, 04:41 PM »

Wa alaykum as salaam. No worries, no harm done, and I was also answering originally on a hypothetical scenario. But I also know from personal experience how confusing the whole thing can get, and how much of it is actually unnecessary and not from the shariah.

Khair, so long as she's happy how things are progressing, it's all good, alhumdulillah

Assalamu alaykum wa rahmatuLlah
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