Anonymous asked in Society & CultureReligion & Spirituality · 1 decade ago

why does Islam allow polygamy(multiple wives) for men?

and why not for women.

was Allah also polygamous

15 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    It was devised to distribute the war-widows among the sex-hungry followers of the Prophet. Later, it has been accepted as a standard practice with out bothering about its relevance to the changing circumstances in different countries where Islam was imposed through wars.

  • Amirul
    Lv 5
    1 decade ago

    The religion of Islam was revealed for all societies and all times and

    so accommodates widely differing social requirements. Circumstances

    may warrant the taking of another wife but the right is granted,

    according to the Quran, only on condition that the husband is

    scrupulously fair. No woman can be forced into this kind of marriage

    if they do not wish it, and they also have the right to exclude it in

    their marriage contract.

    Polygamy is neither mandatory, nor encouraged, but merely permitted.

    Images of "sheikhs with harems" are not consistent with Islam, as a

    man is only allowed at most four wives only if he can fulfill the

    stringent conditions of treating each fairly and providing each with

    separate housing etc. Permission to practice polygamy is not

    associated with mere satisfaction of passion. It is rather

    associated with compassion toward widows and orphans. It was the

    Quran that limited and put conditions on the practice of polygamy

    among the Arabs, who had as many as ten or more wives and considered

    them "property".

    It is both honest and accurate to say that it is Islam that regulated

    this practice, limited it, made it more humane, and instituted equal

    rights and status for all wives. What the Qur'anic decrees amount to,

    taken together is discouragement of polygamy unless necessity for it

    exists. It is also evident that the general rule in Islam is monogamy

    and not polygamy. It is a very tiny percentage of Muslims that

    practice it over the world. However, permission to practice limited

    polygamy is only consistent with Islam's realistic view of the nature

    of man and woman and of various social needs, problems and cultural


    The question is, however far more than the inherent flexibility of

    Islam; it also is the frank and straightforward approach of Islam in

    dealing with practical problems. Rather than requiring hypocritical

    and superficial compliance, Islam delves deeper into the problems of

    individuals and societies, and provides for legitimate and clean

    solutions which are far more beneficial than would be the case if they

    were ignored. There is no doubt that the second wife legally married

    and treated kindly is better off than a mistress without any legal

    rights or expermanence.

  • 1 decade ago

    Muhammad's first love was Katija, a widow 15 years his senior and the first person to become a Muslim. He married no other while she lived. Subsequently the 4 wife restriction came into place. As others have pointed out pre-Islamic Arabia was notoriously polygamous and the 4 wife rule was a restriction to prevent the libidinous harem stuff and a means to care for women that were widowed and their children.

    However this was and still is supposed to be by consent of their first wife and has been abused as a rule over the centuries. Monogamy is still the ideal as demonstrated by the prophet's 1st marriage.

  • Anonymous
    5 years ago

    I do not think that I can address all of the issues in your question but I will try. Under Islamic law, no rights have been given to women. That's why women cannot have four husbands but their husbands can have four wives. That's why man can say Talak, talak, talak but not women. There isn't any logic behind this, just Islam is not a religion that gives a lot of importance to women. I do not feel that this is the secret behind the success of Islam in the world. It seems to me that Islam women have A LOT of babies. In fact, they are considered to be experts at childbirth! When I was in the hospital with my son, there was a woman who gave birth in the morning and she came out to take her own lunch a couple of hours later. But really, anyone can have lots of babies. My husband is Hindu. They worship the mother goddess. In fact, the situation used to be much different in India before Muslim rule. Women were worshipped but lost many of their rights because of Islamic culture. I don't think it's possible to put a break on violence in the world by rules in religions which favour women. I think there will always be violence, there's nothing that can be done. That is, until Jesus comes again to rule on earth but I think that's the answer to another question!

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  • 1 decade ago

    Polygamy is allowed only to men


    If u really want to find it

    There is n number of reason of it ( leave religious aspect)

    today even the Scientist attest that y should polygamy for men be allowed .

    A Medical doctor can also give the answer for it.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    There are a couple of answers to this. First of all, polygamy was simply a long-standing tradition in the Arab world, and thus there was nothing out of the ordinary in Islam allowing the practice. Second, Islam experienced its early expansion by the sword, and thus there were likely more women around than men. Finally, Muhammad had a history of enacting rules to suit his own desires. This is why he announced that it was acceptable for an adoptive father to marry the former wife of his adoptive son, for instance - because this is what he wanted to do, even though it violated the common morality of the time.

  • 1 decade ago

    In Islam, monogamy is the rule; polygamy (more correct term, polygyny), a very, very strict exception with very, very strict rules and regulations.

  • 1 decade ago

    at that time there used to be a lot of tribal and religiosit wars, many men died and left wives, orphans and daughters behind,so to prevent poverty and and prostitution which lead to dis functional society, god allowed marrying more than one woman, but with many conditions .

  • 1 decade ago

    In direct answer to the questioner, the nature of Allah is different from that of human beings. Allah does not marry.

    Allah says in the Holy Qur'an:

    In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful:

    Say: He, Allah is One.

    Allah is the Eternal.

    He has none begotten, nor was He begotten,

    And nothing else is similar to Him.

    (Surah 112: Al-Ikhlas (The Purity of Faith))


    To add to Jannah's excellent answer, above:

    1. Although in modern Western society there is a social "safety net" for women and children who find themselves without men to support and protect them, this is not true of the majority of societies, past and present. Even the current Western system does not provide adequately for, for example, children of single mothers, in that it does not provide male role models for children. Boys brought up in such situations may lack the attitudes and skills that responsible men have; girls raised in such situations may distrust men or have difficulty in trusting men or may lack social and emotional skills and attitudes important to the roles of wife and mother.

    Furthermore, the "welfare" system does not provide adequate support for women and children, and therefore forces women to leave young children at home so that they can support them. At the same time, the system does not provide adequate physical and emotional care for such children.

    Parenting is challenging enough when attempted by a couple. Single mothers who do it successfully most often have the help of an extended family, other members of which help with both mother and father roles.

    2. It is well known that many men in Western society prefer not to marry at all, or to marry only when they are older. Women who want to marry at the optimal age for childbearing have trouble finding suitable partners. Hence the modern decision that many Western women make--to deliberately bear children outside marriage.

    3. There have been times in the past, post-war eras, in which there were shortages of young men because so many had been killed in battle, so that young women had trouble finding men to marry. I myself have know elderly ladies who lost their boyfriends, fiancés, or husbands, in WWI, older ladies than I who lost their men in WW2, and women of my own generation whose men died in Vietnam. A system that does not allow polygyny robs such women of a chance for the pleasure, comfort, companionship, and support of marriage, not to mention the joys of motherhood.

    Historically, situations in which there were shortages of women were temporary and short-term, as during the westward expansion of Europeans in North America. In those situations, the women arrived within a few years. It was not a matter of a whole generation of men going without the chance to marry.


    In fact, very few Muslim men (perhaps one in a hundred) take more than one wife. Aside from all other considerations, such as tradition and respect, men hesitate to do it because of the awesome responsibility of Islamic polygyny.

    A polygynous Muslim man must treat every wife exactly the same as every other one, financially, socially, romantically, and even in terms of time. If he buys one wife a pair of earrings, a new living room suite, or a car, he has to buy exactly the same thing for his other wife or wives.

    If he takes one wife on vacation, he has to come right back home and take the other wife on the exact same vacation.

    This rule extends even to romantic attention. He has to expend the same time and effort on comforting each wife.

    Even more challenging, he has to do his best to make sure that each wife feels secure, admired, cherished, and desired, as every wife has the right to be.

    Islam teaches that a man who does not meet these responsibilities properly will be resurrected hideously disfigured on the Day of Judgment, when, of course, all of humankind will learn how, and to whom, he did wrong.

    Source(s): POLYGAMY IN ISLAMIC LAW Dr. Gamal A. Badawi Biblical polygyny
  • 1 decade ago

    islam is a war-based religion. (jihad and shahada - holy-war and martyrdom - are both crucial concepts in islamic apologetics).

    family-men are war-averse (they care about their wives and children) so a way needs to be developed to have a pool of frustrated bachelors with no hope of marriage in the society.

    the easy way is to manufacture a shortage of women by allocating multiple wives to elder (and richer) males in the community.

    men with no prospect of taking a wife are meaner and more easily led. this is the kind of man islam needs.

    (sexual frustration is also used as a control technique by breeders of fighting dogs).

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