“If you fear a split between them (the spouses), send one arbitrator from his people and one from her people. If they desire to set things right, Allah shall bring about harmony between them. Surely, Allah is All-Knowing, All-Aware. (35)”
(Quran Chapter: 4.Verse: 35)
In short Quran explains in many ways that divorce is allowed in Islam, but it should not to be given readily.
Muslims believe that divorces can cause deep touching scars in the couple, and also diminish the option that any children will have a best look after. It also puts pressure for couples’ family and hence deteriorates the fabric of civilization. In the Sunni tradition, it is said that “divorce without a suitable cause shakes the throne of God”.
1. Hazrat Umer’s Law
In the life of holly prophet Muhammad (PBUH) the law of divorce was according to Quran given by God.
Also in the life of first Caliph of Islam Hazrat Abu Bakkar Siddique (RA) the law of divorce was same as in the life of the holly prophet Muhammad (PBUH) i.e. according the Quran.
In first two years of Hazrat Umer (RA) the second caliph of Muslims the law of divorce was the same as in the life of the holly prophet Muhammad (PBUH) and the first Caliph Hazrat Abu Bakkar Siddique (RA) but latter he (Hazrat Umer) made amendments in the law of Islamic divorce.
Hazrat Umer (RA) declared that a divorce becomes active when a husband utters the word Talaq three times in presence of his wife.
1. Sunni and Shia Sects
There are two major sects of Muslims in the word, The Sunni and the Shia. Because Shias do not accept Hazrat Umer (RA) as the second caliph of Islam, and for many other reasons they do not accept the law of Hazrat Umer (RA) about Talaq in Islam. Shias still follow the Talaq system of Quran as it is; rather they criticize Hazrat Umer (RA) for his amendments in such a sensitive family law of Islam.
On the contrary Sunnis still adopt the Three Talaqs at the spot system. Because the majority of the Muslims in the world belong to Sunni sect, so the majority of the Muslims now believes in three Talaqs in one sitting theory.
The Sunnis again have their branches or sub-sects called Hanfis, Shafis, Malkis and Hamblis. Only Shafis insist on rights of women and the other three sects Hanfis, Shafis and Malkis don’t.
2. Sunni Law (Jamhoor)
The Hanfi Sunnis cover 80 percent of the Muslim population throughout the world. Hanfi Sunnis accept the amendment in the law of divorce. They believe in “Three Talaqs at the spot” theory. According to this theory Talaq is the Vito Power of the husband which gives him full authority to break the marriage in a second. Because this is a sacred religious practice so no one doubts it ever or criticizes it as a one sided and unfair law in Hanfi Sunnis. Although they admit that this is the worst thing they ever had but they never wanted to re-amend the law ever. Hanfi Sunnis are the followers of Imam Abu Hanifa who was one of the great Muslim Judges and founder of many laws and commandments, about a century later, from the period of the holly prophet Muhammad (PBUH).
Three Talaqs in one sitting or Three Talaqs at the spot is called Talaq e Salasa, means Triple Talaq. It doesn’t mean that Hanfi Sunnis don’t appreciate the proper way of Talaq according to the Quran. They strictly prohibit people to use triple Talaq or three Talaqs in one sitting. They appreciate the person who don’t use Talaq e Salasa at the spot and adopts the proper procedure according to Quran and the Sunnah of holly Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). A Hanfi Scholar always advises to divorce a woman according to cycle theory. They disgrace the person who gives three Talaqs to his wife in one sitting but they do not cancel his Talaq. If someone brings back his wife to his house after Three Talaqs Sunnis consider him a big sinner equal to infidel.
Triple Talaqs at the spot is also called Talaq-i-Bid’ah by Hanfis, means innovated (or wicked) form of Divorce. It is defined as a divorce which is pronounced thrice in one sitting when the wife is in the state of purity (tuhr), i.e., when man says these words to his wife:
“I divorce you
I divorce you
I divorce you”
The Hanfis accept as true that though this form of divorce is sinful and innovative, it is on the other hand valid and divorce will take place. Consistent with the Hanfis when triple Talaq is uttered, the wife will become totally stranger for the husband and he cannot remarry her. She becomes Haram (totally prohibited) for him. Neither can he take her back nor can he remarry her. He can go for Nikah with her only after she marries another person and that person gives her Talaq on account of marital disagreement or she becomes a widow. This is called Halala.
According to Maulana Umar Ahmad Usmani this is the point of not only Abu Hanifa but also of Imam Malik and Shafi. Imam Shafi says this form of divorce is completely legal. It is not innovation (bid’ah). It is quite appropriate on the part of the husband to utter such a divorce. No husband can be stopped from adopting a legal course. Even Imam Ahmad bin Hanbal’s position is the similar as that of Imam Hanifa and Imam Malik. Therefore it seems that all major founders of four schools of jurisprudence accept the validity of triple Talaqs.
Ibn e Taimiya
But Ibn e Taimiya has confirmed that Imam Ahmad bin Hanbbal had withdrawn from his previous opinion of allowing the legality of three Talaqs in one sitting and in an afterward period he used to say that when I reflected on the Quranic sate I came to the result that Quran permits only Raj’ee Talaq, i.e. divorce in which the husband can remarry her wife. Thus Ibn e Taimiya himself took the position that if someone announces three Talaqs at the spot, those three Talaqs should be treated as one and only one. Even if someone utters the wording of Talaq more than three times, for example hundred times or so, it should be treated only one Talaq at all. They can remarry within the Iddah period (period of at least 2 menstrual cycles) or rearrange Nikah if Iddah period has ended.
Ibn e Taimiya says that Imam Ahmad’s accompanying persons and followers also adopted this position. Many companions of the holly Prophet like Abdullah Ibn e Abbas, Hazrat Ali (RA), also were of this view.
Ibn Taimiya was imprisoned on orders from Cairo in the citadel of Damascus for supporting a principle that would restrict the ease with which a Muslim man could divorce his wife.