Physical beauty will finish, but good character gives a loveliness which will never fade. A lady may be beautiful physically, but have a bad character. You may carry her for a while for her beauty but when it goes you can't put up with her, because of her bad character. If a lady has good character, she will be lovely for ever. At every age she will be lovely - her husband will never be fed up with her. Physical beauty is only for a short while. What about after it? No more beauty, no more lovely character. You would put such a one in the dustbin.

Therefore, the Prophet (pbuh) said: Don't look for the beauty of ladies, but ask for the beauty to be in familiar and lovely character. That will be a permanent marriage for ever - here and hereafter. The Prophet always advised to take the best one. Our egos on men's or women's side always ask for physical beauty or looks. These are only temporary and the Prophet (pbuh) showed his nation not to run after temporary beauty, but look for permanent loveliness and be happy.

Also, don't look for a rich one. Perhaps a rich lady will always be in charge of you. She will say: My money, my property. You might be disturbed all the time. It is better not to marry a woman richer than yourself. Look for a woman who is not so rich as you, so that she is not always saying: My money, my property, my house, my appartment.

Marry for religious aspects. One who will be respectful to you - keeping and helping and respecting you. Be with a good, religious lady who will make you happy here and hereafter - more than beautiful one, and more than rich one.

We are answering these questions to help people understand Islam and to take away misunderstanding and to provide exact answers for important subjects that everyone interested in Islam should know. Answers for those who are interested in real faith and realities. I hope that our answers will be trustworthy for those who accept realities, not fanatics.

QUESTION - This area of male/female relationships in Islam is frequently misunderstood in the West.

Firstly, the holiest establishment in the world is family structure. It is the most important and holiest establishment - marriage and family life, and every religion has very strict rules to make it within powerful protection and to keep it for mankind.

Marriage and family life in Islam are protected by very strict and strong rules, because every goodness comes through marriage. Every badness and evil and devils find a way to destroy beliefs and good character. Devils will be successful in their bad intentions by destroying family and marriage. That is the main aims of devils - to destroy family life and the foundations of marriage. The most difficult time for mankind is NOW. Every evil is just pouring on earth, because devils are trying to reach their final aim - to destroy the foundations of marriage and family life.

This is the reason that Western people don't care about their beliefs as Christians or Jews. There is no more power in Christianity or Judaism over their followers - they are unable to control them, there is now more discipline. The only discipline for marriage and family life which is able to control the lives of people is in Islam. Therefore, Western people are attacking Islamic discipline of families. They are trying to break down that protection, break down the discipline of family, break down the holiness of marriage and make Islam the same as Judaism and Christianity. That is why they are attacking. Mostly atheists are objecting to and rejecting and attacking Islam, family life in Islam and the marriage foundations of Islam.

When you understand this introduction, everything will seem simple. This is a reality. No-one can object to what I am saying now.

If we believe in the Holy position of marriage and family, we have to chose Islam's rules and disciplines. Unless we accept this, there will be no more family life and no more blessed marriage for mankind and that is the main aim of devils. Therefore, we must accept Islamic discipline and rules for blessed family life and Holy marriage foundations. What are Islam's rules? It is the same rule as Allah Almighty sent to Moses and Jesus Christ about families.

The man (husband) should be the boss in the family. The woman must be under his rule. That is the same in Islam as it was for Christians and Jews in the past. When we say that the husband is boss and the wife should follow the boss, men have been ordered to be good husbands and women to be good wives. When men are good husbands and women good wives, there are no problems, no difficulties; but if one is bad, there will be no balance in the family. Sometimes there is a good husband, bad wife; sometimes a good wife, bad husband. Both conditions are necessary. If the couple is suitable, they must be thankful to their Lord for making both sides good and for having good understanding of each other. When this is the case, it will be a good example of marriage and family life.

If not - one side good, one side bad - it is a test from Allah Almighty. Then, if one person is patient with the other partner, Allah Almighty will reward him or her. They must try to be patient if one is no good and has bad attributes. As long as they can carry this, Allah Almighty will reward them.

In Islam Allah Almighty gives permission to husbands to divorce. He gave that permission, but he dislikes it. However, he gave it and man may divorce. So, of course, can women (on condition that she asks for it at her nikah - marriage). So a woman may get divorce if she needs it. Sometimes Western sources attack Islam on the grounds that all the power of divorce is on the man's side and that women are like slaves. It is not true. Islam also gives women the possibility to make that condition at the start of her marriage and the husband can accept it or not right from the start. It the man accepts, then that power is with the lady - she may divorce any time herself.

No-one can object on that point. Islam makes marriage and living easy. Marriage must be acceptable to both parties in front of two witnesses. Then it is a real marriage. It is so easy. And for divorce also the man may say in front of two witnesses - I am leaving that one. Easy marriage, but strong, because marriage is done according to the Holy Command of Allah Almighty and the sunna of the Prophet, therefore marriage is founded on a Holy basis.

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