SEVERAL MARRIAGES OR POLYGAMY
Polygamy or several marriages in not tyranny for a woman, instead it is a justified step given the habits and nature of some people. In Greece, it was common to marry numerous women and many Christian priests had allowed some Christian Emperors for polygamy after Islam, as for example, the King of France Sharlman who was of the same era as of Caliph Mehdi and Mamun Rasheed. People of different cultures had different habits about polygamy. The western culture denied polygamy in the contemporary age and allowed adultery and extra-marital affairs instead of polygamy.
According to the English scholar Spencer, women in England were sold from eleventh to fifteenth century. Even in the end of the eleventh century, the Church had made it legal for a person that a husband can hand over his wife to another person for a fixed time period. The worst part was that the King had the complete right over others ‘wives by all means. Other than this, there were many oppressive laws and regulations against the women. As compared to this, Islam and its esteemed culture has respected a woman, her feelings, modesty, chastity and humanity in such a manner that it has no parallel in any other culture.
When Islam allowed polygamy it set some conditions for it that must be observed. The first condition is that a person can keep only four wives at the same time. The second condition is that the husband must be able to fulfill all of their rights and the most important condition is that he should do justice among them and if a husband cannot do justice among them then he just restrict himself to one wife only. It is important to consider that Islam has not made polygamy as obligatory but has allowed it and it has some expediences:
* When it becomes impossible between husband and wife to live their life together amicably, the husband can remarry and the wife can live with his second wife and there would be no chance of divorce.
* When the wife becomes sterile, sometimes a person is bound to remarry for the love of having kids.
* During the wars, the number of women increases. In that situation, polygamy becomes a necessity for the society. In this way, the imbalance between males and females would not cause corruption and conflict in the society.
* There are people who cannot control their libido. If the wife is in her menstrual periods or in the state of Nifas (postnatal or puerperal blood) or suffers from such a disease in which the husband cannot satisfy his sexual rights, such person is likely to get involved in an illicit (Extramarital) relationship. Therefore it is better to permit him to remarry (within the allowable limits), to avoid such trouble. On the basis of all these reasons, Islam has allowed polygamy.