The well-known Muslim scholar, Sheikh Yusuf Al-Qaradawi has stated that: Marriage, in Islam, is a solemn contract. It is meant to last until death. To assure this objective, Islam regards setting a certain period of time for marital life as impermissible; such a temporary marriage is known as Mut`ah. Also, Islam lays down certain conditions that guarantee the stability of marriage so that it may bring forth its good fruits. This, in fact, cannot be achieved except when harmony exists between the husband and the wife, in addition to love, affection and mutual respect for each other’s rights; this is what should dominate their marital life.
However, it may happen that dissention creeps into the marital life and both the husband and the wife find that living together becomes unbearable. If all efforts of reconciliation between the spouses fail, the final solution permitted by Shari`ah is divorce.
In response to the bitter realities of life, when difficulties cannot be resolved except through the separation of the two parties in an honorable fashion, Islam makes it permissible for the couple to resort to divorce, but it permitted it reluctantly, neither liking nor commending it. In this context, the Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, said, “Among lawful things, divorce is most detested by Allah.”(Reported by Abu Dawud).
In Islam, divorce is not an aim in itself. Rather, it is a solution that may be resorted to, after the failure of all efforts of reconciliation between the spouses, in order to put an end to their unbearable marital life.
there is no single Qur’anic verse or Prophetic Hadith that underestimates the divorcee, man or woman. The Glorious Qur’an, in contrast, lays down specific rules to control the issue of divorce through determining its rules, morals, and duties. If being divorced were so stigmatic, the Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him, would not have married ZaynabbintJahsh after ZaydibnHarithah had divorced her.
Regarding the issue of divorce, Allah Almighty addresses His Messenger, peace and blessings be upon him, saying, “O Prophet! When ye (men) put away women, put them away for their (legal) period and reckon the period, and keep your duty to Allah, your Lord. Expel them not from their houses nor let them go forth unless they commit open immorality. Such are the limits (imposed by) Allah; and whoso transgresseth Allah’s limits, he verily wrongeth his soul. Thou knowest not: it may be that Allah will afterward bring some new thing to pass.” (At-Talaq: 1)
A man is not permitted to infringe upon the rights of the divorced woman because divorce neither exempts man from his duties nor abolishes the rights of the woman. It actually prescribes additional rights for the divorced woman. Allah Almighty says: “For divorced women a provision in kindness: a duty for those who ward off (evil).” (Al-Baqarah: 241)
By no means does divorce permit transgressing Allah’s limits and ordinances. Allah Almighty says: “Divorce may be (pronounced) twice and then (a woman) must be retained in honor or released in kindness. And it is not lawful for you that ye take from women aught of that which ye have given them; except (in the case) when both fear that they may not be able to keep within the limits (imposed by) Allah. And if ye fear that they may not be able to keep the limits of Allah, in that case it is no sin for either of them if the woman ransom herself. These are the limits (impo
sed by) Allah. Transgress them not. For whoso transgresseth Allah’s limits: such are wrongdoers.”
(Al-Baqarah: 229)
Even after divorce, Allah Almighty addresses men and women, saying: “… and forget not kindness among yourselves. Allah is Seer of what ye do.” (Al-Baqarah: 237)
The aforementioned Qur’anic verses shed some light on the Islamic stance on divorce. It is our duty to adhere to Allah’s laws and never violate them.