How can one appropriately make use of sattari and qaul-e-sadeed in matrimonial affairs?


During the… mulaqat of 22 August 2020, Huzooraa was asked, “Allah is Al-Sattar i.e. the Concealer of weaknesses. In light of this attribute, would it be right to investigate or ask around about a particular boy, a girl or their family when arranging marriages?” Huzoor aa said: 

“Allah the Exalted is Sattar and He loves sattari [concealing people’s faults]. Thus, if one comes to know about another person’s faults, they should not disclose them to others. It means that one should cover the flaws of another. However, with regard to matrimonial affairs, a commandment of the Holy Quran is that both parties should ‘say the right word’ [qaulan sadeedan]. 

“If there are any faults in either the boy or the girl when a marriage proposal is made, they should be made clear to one another and both parties should be truthful about it. There should be no twisting of facts, so that later on, it does not cause any rifts in the relationship. That is why everything should be openly conveyed to one another. Matrimonial affairs are a very sensitive matter. Later on, people quarrel and say, ‘We were not told about such and such things.’ Therefore, whilst agreeing to a marriage proposal, it is best to openly convey everything and in the verses of the Holy Quran which are read out at the nikah ceremony, great emphasis has been laid upon ‘saying the right word’ for this very reason. 

“So, the instruction to conceal one’s faults [sattari] has a different significance and that is that you should not disclose one’s flaws or blemishes. If you are proposing a suitable match, you can explain that this is the marriage proposal, and even if you are aware of some of the weaknesses of either party whilst suggesting a suitable match, you should make it clear that this is only a proposal; both parties should get together, meet each other, pray and then make a decision. This is how you should act upon sattari

“It should not be the case that before suggesting a match, you say to either party that this person has such and such weaknesses and as a result of which that person does not get married. You should simply say, ‘Here is a match and it is merely a proposal. Whatever positive things and potentially negative things there may be about each other is something that you should determine on your own after having met the other party. And if you like the proposal, then you may accept it; you should pray and then make a decision.’ 

“In actual fact, Allah the Exalted is the Knower of the unseen and only He possesses knowledge of the unseen. He knows as to which marriage proposal is best for a particular person and that is why one should always pray before making a decision and that is why Allah the Exalted has said that one should offer the istikhara prayer. Istikhara means to seek goodness. One should seek goodness from Allah the Exalted and pray, ‘If there is goodness in this marriage proposal, then may Allah ordain it for me and open up the ways for me with ease. If, however, there is no goodness in this marriage proposal, then Allah may cause a hindrance in the finalisation of this proposal.’ 

Sattari does not mean that both parties should not present the true facts before one another during a marriage proposal. If both parties meet each other and sit down with one another, then it is best to “say the right word” and mention the positive and the negative things about oneself so that they are known to both parties. No one is perfect. There is goodness in everyone and there are bad habits in people as well. This does not mean that one should announce all of his or her bad qualities, but if there is something that can potentially cause issues later on in the relationship or break the relationship, then it is best for that weakness to be made clear to the other party beforehand. Whether there is a weakness or an illness; if a girl is unable to bear children or if there is some deficiency within a man, then that should be made clear to one another beforehand so that it does not cause issues later on.” 

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