“Marriage is part of my Sunnah and whoever disregards (my Sunnah) is not from us.”
As the Final Messenger of God to mankind, Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), who promulgated the most universally comprehensive Shari’a, led the most excellently exemplary life.
He practiced whatever he preached, and whatever he preached became an integral part of his Sunnah and Seerah (Practice and Behaviour).
Celibacy is unnatural and not part of human nature. Thus at the age of 25, in the prime of manhood, even though he was not yet commanded by God to formally proclaim his mission, he had to marry, in order to fulfill the basic human needs of leading a stable life and building a morally sound family.
As the best of creation, and as the most perfect offspring of Adam and Eve (whose light had descended, generation after generation, through spotlessly clean wombs and pristinely pure backs), he had to marry the most virtuously chaste lady of his times, in order to start the pristinely pure progeny of all times – whose unsullied cleanliness God would eventually vouch in the holy Qur’an: “Allah desires to keep away uncleanness from you Ahl-ul-Bayt and preserve you thoroughly purified.” (33:33)
Ummul Momineen Hazrat Hazrat Khadija (A.S) also known as “Maleekat al-Arab”
It was on this day (Rabi al-Awwal 10) that the Ameerat al-Quraysh (Princess of the Quraysh) and Maleekat al-Arab (Richest Lady of Arabia) entered into the blessed union of marriage with the future Prophet.
On 10th of the Islamic month of Rabi al-Awwal, 28 years before Hijra, the marriage of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) and Hazrat Khadija (peace upon her) took place in Mecca. Khadija, known as “Maleekat al-Arab” or Queen of Arabia, because of her proverbial wealth that she had accumulated through trade caravans, was a pure and chaste lady (Tahera) and was impressed by the honesty and truthfulness of his trade manager, the future Prophet, who did not possess any material wealth.
She was a monotheist, and the two made an excellent husband-and-wife pair. Fifteen years later, when God formally ordained Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) as the Last and Greatest Messenger to mankind, she immediately believed in the mission of her husband and thereafter spent all her wealth for feeding and sheltering the persecuted Muslim community of Mecca, to the extent that when she passed away, nothing was left of her wealth or any inheritance for her only surviving daughter, the noblest lady of all time, Hazrat Fatima Zahra (peace upon her).
For over 25 long years, as the Omm al-Momineen or Mother of Believers, Hazrat Khadija was the one and only wife of the Prophet, and as long as she lived he never took another spouse. Even in the last ten years of his life in Medina when out of social necessity and to break the absurd customs of the days of ignorance, the middle aged Prophet had to marry several wives, he always used to cherish the memory of Khadija, the mother of his progeny, the Ahl-ul-Bayt.
I have no intention to mention the name of the wife (one of the several the widowed middle-aged Prophet had taken in the last years of his life out of social necessity and in order to break the taboos of the days of ignorance), who was scolded by him for objecting to his remembrance of the One and Only Mother of all True Believers, with the words: "By God, the Almighty did not grant me a better wife than her. She believed in me when the people used to mock at me and she acknowledged me when the people denied me. She shared her wealth and property with me and she bore me children which I was not destined to have through other women."
What I intend to state here is that none of these ladies, whatever their degree of faith (or lack of it in some of them), were never considered by the Seal of Prophets to be on a par with the beloved Khadija (A.S), whose memory he used to cherish till the end of his life – as part of his undeniable Sunnah and Seerah.
Acclaimed as the Tahera (the Chaste) for remaining virtuously single so far, the Nikah (nuptials) of the One and Only Mother of all True Believers (Omm al-Momineen) was solemnized by none other than that primordial Muslim, the Prophet’s beloved uncle and guardian, Abu Taleb, who along with his wife, Fatima bint Asad, had brought up his orphaned nephew as his own son.
To be brief, the wedding of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) and Hazrat Khadija (A.S) was celebrated on a grand scale. The Walima meals given by the beaming uncle, Abu Taleb, who had arranged the marriage, lasted for three successive days, while the reciprocal meals provided by the bride for the poor, the needy, the travelers, and all Meccans, continued for almost three months.
No wonder, when five years later, Abu Taleb’s youngest child, Imam Ali (A.S), was born, the Prophet and his wife, who had lost their sons in infancy, took him under their care to nurture, raise and eventually marry him to the Infallible Fatima (A.S), so as to ensure eternity for the blessed progeny of the Mercy unto the creation.
Her unrivalled status is crystal clear for all Muslims, who very well know that whenever Islam was in danger, it was the progeny of Khadija (A.S) that rose to the occasion by giving it the kiss of life through their lifeblood – with Karbala and the martyrdom of her grandson, Imam Hussein (A.S), being the supreme example.
It is also needless to say that the Redeemer of mankind, the Awaited Imam Mahdi (A.S), who will fill the world with justice, is the direct offspring of the Immaculate Khadija (A.S).
Could there be a better Sunnah of the Prophet than his marriage to Khadija (A.S); his respect for her during the quarter century of marital bliss; his cherishing of her memory till the end of his life as one of the Four Noblest Ladies of all time; his profound affection for her daughter Fatima (A.S), son-in-law Ali (A.S) and grandsons Hassan (A.S) and Hussein (A.S); and his emphasis on her Immaculate Progeny (the Ahl-ul-Bayt) as the evergreen tree of divine guidance for the whole ummah, including his Sahaba or companions?