Violence and aggression in marital life

Cruelty is an inappropriate behavior in all of its physical and mental forms whether it is done clearly or secretly. However, when cruelty is imposed in
Saturday, May 5, 2018
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author: علی اکبر مظاهری
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Violence and aggression in marital life
Violence and aggression in marital life

Translator: Hadi Moein

Extracted from: Rasekhoon

Cruelty is an inappropriate behavior in all of its physical and mental forms whether it is done clearly or secretly. However, when cruelty is imposed in relationships, a weak person is more hurt than a strong person. It should be reminded that each serious action is not considered as cruelty. For example, sometimes, parents control their children more in order to establish discipline and behave them seriously in order to train them. In Islamic sources, there are a lot of recommendations that prevent persons from cruelty in family and the society. These recommendations are considered as moral principles that should be internalized and others are rights that should be applied in the governorship of law because the cruelty of a person can be influenced by natural factors (biological and mental cases) and the cultural and structure conditions of the society.
Since cruelty can be accompanied with a lot of consequences, it has a great importance. The definition of the conception of cruelty can help us to get familiar with it. Cruelty means hurting someone physically with clear or hidden purpose and intentions. Cruelty is the extreme form of aggression that may lead to physical damages. Cruelty is action of a person that transgresses the body, wealth and grace of others. According to the above definitions, cruelty can lead to mental and physical damages.
In another definition, the word '' cruelty'' is explained in the following sentences:
When one or more directors interact directly or indirectly in order to hurt each other in one or more ways and in different degrees whether in terms of physical personality or spiritual personality either in terms of assets or symbolic participation or in terms of culture such as faith, traditions and language of the people in such a situation, violence will occur.
In this definition, the dimensions and scope of violence are mentioned quantitatively and qualitatively. In any cases, violent behaviors are different explicitly or implicitly, purposefully or without purpose and physically or psychologically.
The above definitions refer to the correct dimensions of cruelty, but it should be reminded that some of the definitions in the books are based on the Western subjectivity of freedom and individualism as sometimes definitions related to some groups such as women are too biased.
Of course, physical violence is a very bad form of cruelty, but some psychological violence has a long-lasting impact on an individual, and the position of weaker groups such as women, children and old people is always more horrific in this regard. At the same time, we must emphasize that in Islamic theory, the freedom of an individual is not such that no one can mentally advise him, make good and forbid him, as the Islamic punishment law imposes certain penalties for crimes committed by criminals and controls persons' freedom. Parents also have the right to train their children while they do well, and husbands have the responsibility of protecting their women while avoiding violence and doing good social relationships. In these interactions, sometimes, one of parties does not apply all moral standards in his or her actions, but this does not always mean violence. In a literal sense and in a normal life, sometimes an angry husband or wife behaves aggressively. In this case, you cannot immediately accuse them of violent acts although both are responsible for the suppression of their anger and control their anger. Therefore, it seems that violence in the definition is a behavior that involves physical or psychological damages or both of them and is applied to someone else in an unwise manner.
Therefore, violent behavior can be promising or current as it may be applied to a person or group against another person or group. A woman or a man can commit violent behaviors, but a stronger man can often hurt a weaker person more. In Islamic thought, the worst oppression is oppression to a weaker person and superior ethics is introduced as the avoidance of revenge while having power.
Sexual Violence: One of the types of violence is sexual violence. It also means any physical, visual, verbal or sexual action that threatens a woman or a girl at the time of occurrence or later and leads to her discomfort or contempt, or the ability to make a close and intimate contact with her such as ape, the creation of an irritating or humiliating environment for women with pornography, various sexual exploitation that harms women's and girls' mental health, abuse of girls and women in the trade of prostitution and smuggling. For this purpose, everyone follows the definition of sexual violence. Such violence sometimes takes on widespread dimensions and is used as a strategy in wars against a nation such as organized aggression to change the race of a nation. Of course, women and children have been the victims of this type of violence in the majority of wars.
Family Violence
Family violence is emotional, physical and sexual violence that a family member applies to another member. According to studies, the main purpose of this violence is children especially children under the age of six, and then women. Women may also commit physical violence in the family. It is sometimes claimed that women at home are as violent as men with their husbands and children, but it is clear that women's violence is more limited and less likely to cause a lasting physical harm. Therefore, durability and physical damage are characteristics of male violence. Women often commit verbal and psychological violence with behaviors such as constant indignation or humiliation of husbands. In some cases, however, physical violence of women (mothers and step mothers) against children has been reported. Therefore, if a woman feels humiliated, threatened and restricted by the behavior of her husband, she has been behaved violently. It is clear that this approach is incomplete because it ignores violence to women and other members. In addition to assessing violence, it only focuses on women's emotions. On the other hand, most people will feel humiliated when opposed to them, or when faced with a serious encounter, but as it was mentioned, any actions that cause such a feeling are not violence, especially with women who are emotionally excited earlier and longer.
Moreover, it should be emphasized that Islamic texts have recommended men to paying attention to the position of women and girls. Considering the emotions of women and girls and refusing to excite their emotions are ethical orders that these texts have made men aware of them. It turns out that violence against women can be considered more unethical. If women hurt their husbands, men always find an easy way to escape from the space they have such as being able to leave the house at any time of day, to entertain themselves or even divorce their spouses, but There are always no ways for women. Oppression to women is often a kind of oppression to a weak person.
Family violence is an old and global problem. It was even reported that in the middle and early stages of industrialization, violence against women was a commonplace aspect of marriage, and the legal interference with domestic violence has always been very limited and insignificant for various reasons, including the privacy of this boundary. Family violence surveys began with an article published in 1962 by Henry Kempe et al. (Syndrom of battered child). Afterwards, in later decades, this aspect of violence was reflected in the international community. The Fourth Human Rights Conference in Vienna (1997) prioritized the phenomenon of violence against women. Earlier, at its 50th session in its 1969/45 resolution on March 4, 1994, the commission decided to report on its findings during a three-year period by identifying a link to examine the various dimensions of the phenomenon. Of course, all reports and investigations were followed by feminist definition of violence. In this definition, the husband's request for a woman to establish a marital relationship with the reluctance of a woman is an example of domestic violence against women. In addition, the documents and studies ignore violence with other members of the family.
Family violence factors
Family is a safe place. Intimacy that people experience in the family is less likely to be found elsewhere. However, research has shown that sometimes in this situation, damages are inflicted to weaker members. Therefore, you must know why such an environment involves violent behavior.
There are many different ideas and analyzes in this regard that some authors have arranged in the form of theories. In the following, we summarize these theories.
Theories of Human violence phenomenon
1. Behavioral aggression is instinctive and humans are naturally aggressive. Internal pressures create the essence of violence.
2. Aggression is the result of the rejection of dependents or the feeling of weakness or the desire to rule a particular order. (A man or woman who is rejected by his or her first degree affiliates and approaches violence, and violence is a way to compensate for this deficiency and mental distress caused by exclusion. In contrary to the previous theory, this theory is based on specific environmental or motivational conditions.
3. Social learning: According to this theory, violent behavior is learned through imitation and direct experiences.
Major theories about the phenomenon of human violence
The theory of social supervision.
People tend to achieve their goal by force and strength. Social supervision in the community is an obstacle to this authority and violence. But in a family with personal privacy, because there is no social monitoring, violence is created.
Functionalism theory
This theory justifies violence. Based on this theory, some family members use violence to maintain their function and influence in the family and to eliminate some contradictions. Husband may benefit from his violence to maintain their function in relation to a woman, father or mother in relation to their children and older children in relation to older children.
Cultural Theory
Sometimes the culture and norms of a society are consistent with violence, such as a society that agrees with the use of violence to maintain order in the society (both at macro level and at the micro level of the family) such as the use of masculine violence against their spouses.
The theory of social structure (tension and contradiction)
This view emphasizes on stressful situations although these situations are inside and outside the family (such as the phenomenon of addiction), violent behavior in the family is greater.
Feminist theory
In this theory, authoritarian structures such as patriarchy are introduced as the main cause of the appearance of violence. In these analyzes, authority is the essential element used by man to follow his desires and to ignore woman's desires. In this analysis, the family as the central institution of patriarchy is introduced.
In this regard, there are also systematic theories that refrain from one-factor analysis. Violence appears to be unidirectional phenomena and a systematic study is more useful in its analysis. Violence is sometimes a psychological factor. Lack of kindness in childhood, lack of security and comfort, and experiencing or seeing violence makes these people more aggressive in older ages. Family relationships also interact negatively with family members. Sometimes violence is affected by the external system and external factors such as unemployment or addiction, and the culture of a society does not promote high moral values sufficiently and on the other hand, it preserves and keeps internal violence. Like punishment in the family, the punishment of children by the hands of the parents and the wife at the hands of her husband is often endorsed by the public. It may be argued that Islamic theories about the factors of domestic violence are systemic theories that relate violence to various factors.
Islamic point of view about violence
It can be understood from religious ideas that Islam presents a combined theory about violence. Violence can have an emotional background. The creation of a person is rooted in natural and physical factors. Psychological characteristics can also be due to hormonal function or educational backgrounds in a person's life. At the same time, the role of cultural structures and social oversight should not be ignored. The cultural status of the society can facilitate or prevent violence. Government institutions and customary institutions can prevent violence and its spread if they act rightly and they can help to persevere and reproduce violent behavior if they do not pay attention to it.
The next one is sexual violence and sexual violence against women can be specifically mentioned as a cultural and educational factor that enhances tolerance in sexual behavior and reduces people's self-restraint or excite the sexual feelings of men. This factor, which also includes a minor dimension (such as biological, educational and ethical dimensions), and a macro dimension (such as the presence of secretive and violent media or the powerlessness of nonviolent culture), is an important factor in the incidence of sexual violence against women.
Some religious ideas related to Islamic sources are explained in this way:
The phenomenon of violence, especially in its family dimension, has not been hidden from the perspective of the heavenly schools. Hardness, rigidity, misery, suspicion, indignation, anger, physical harassment, and similar subjects are all considered to be blamed in Islamic verses and most of them are among the great sins. In some cases, they have a degree of violence. These sentences are expressed in terms of punishment, penalty and death in the Islamic penal system. The announcement of the acute punishments of the past for such behaviors is an indication of religious dissatisfaction with violence.
According to jurisprudential regulations, in some cases, Islamic ruler is permitted to impose certain punishments, its boundaries are completely known and no one can increase the quantity or quality of the amount specified in the Shari'a (limits) or ruler (Ta'zirat).
In the Islamic perspective, love and hate must be for God, and nobody should be angry ,except for cases that violence is permitted (such as defensive wars or primitive jihad), to take revenge or do actions in order to thwart his heart. For this reason, the Prophet Muhammad (peace of Allah be upon him and his descendants) at the beginning of the battle called for his officers and said "In the name of the merciful God and the merciful God, invade the enemy , but do not harm the women, children or old men, or break a tree... Therefore, even in war which is a great symbol of violence, Muslims have a duty to move in the path of God and control what they are doing. Violent inhibition is very important in cases where it is permitted.
In the prophetic way, the prophet of Allah (peace of Allah be upon him and his descendants) argued against the use of ill-advised violence in order not to turn into public behavior or manner. For example, the messenger of God investigated the war and the killing of Khalid ibn Walid in the Bani-am-Talal tribe. The Messenger of Allah sent Imam Ali (peace be upon him) to the Bani-am-Talal tribe to appease the survivors and to repair some of the injuries of this ill-fated violence. After he came back, Hazrat Ali presented a report on the activities undertaken. He said "... For each abortion, I gave money to each family. I gave some of the money left to women and children who were afraid of the attack. I even paid the money to the owners of the dishes that livestock animals ate and those dishes were broken during the war''.
It is natural that the religion of such an affectionate prophet pays special importance to domestic violence. The kinship is very important for Islam and the family center and marriage bond are the most popular focus and social link with the Prophet Muhammad (peace of Allah be upon him and his descendants). All Islamic narratives refer to paired transplants and kinship ties for the establishment, maintenance and enrichment of this link. It is natural that violations that damage these links are most prohibited in Islam. For this reason, we will discuss some of the verses and narratives in the discussion of domestic violence against women.
Doing good deeds at all stages of family life is the human duty of Muslim men and women. Socializing with the famous which is a Quranic word means good behavior. It is important to emphasize the importance of children, respect for parents, avoidance of misbehaving, prioritizing families in the pursuit of benevolence, and goodness and tolerance with women at all conditions as religious orders for women and families. As Quran states
''یَا أَیُّهَا الَّذِینَ آمَنُوا لَا یَحِلُّ لَکُمْ أَن تَرِثُوا النِّسَاءَ کَرْهًا ۖ وَلَا تَعْضُلُوهُنَّ لِتَذْهَبُوا بِبَعْضِ مَا آتَیْتُمُوهُنَّ إِلَّا أَن یَأْتِینَ بِفَاحِشَةٍ مُّبَیِّنَةٍ ۚ وَعَاشِرُوهُنَّ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ ۚ فَإِن کَرِهْتُمُوهُنَّ فَعَسَىٰ أَن تَکْرَهُوا شَیْئًا وَیَجْعَلَ اللَّهُ فِیهِ خَیْرًا کَثِیرًا''
''O ye who believe! Ye are forbidden to inherit women against their will. Nor should ye treat them with harshness, that ye may Take away part of the dower ye have given them,-except where they have been guilty of open lewdness; on the contrary live with them on a footing of kindness and equity. If ye take a dislike to them it may be that ye dislike a thing, and Allah brings about through it a great deal of good''.
أُولَٰئِکَ الَّذِینَ نَتَقَبَّلُ عَنْهُمْ أَحْسَنَ مَا عَمِلُوا وَنَتَجَاوَزُ عَن سَیِّئَاتِهِمْ فِی أَصْحَابِ الْجَنَّةِ ۖ وَعْدَ الصِّدْقِ الَّذِی کَانُوا یُوعَدُونَ
Such are they from whom We shall accept the best of their deeds and pass by their ill deeds: (They shall be) among the Companions of the Garden: a promise! of truth, which was made to them (in this life).
In the Holy Qur'an, the durability of life depends on good behavior. Even the right divorce is on the basis of benevolence. The Qur'an's message to His Messenger is
وَمَن یَقْنُتْ مِنکُنَّ لِلَّهِ وَرَسُولِهِ وَتَعْمَلْ صَالِحًا نُّؤْتِهَا أَجْرَهَا مَرَّتَیْنِ وَأَعْتَدْنَا لَهَا رِزْقًا کَرِیمًا
But any of you that is devout in the service of Allah and His Messenger, and works righteousness,- to her shall We grant her reward twice: and We have prepared for her a generous Sustenance.
He also commands devout men to either keep women well or give them away to goodness. This verse manifestly excludes men from harassment to spouses, and says
وَإِذَا طَلَّقْتُمُ النِّسَاءَ فَبَلَغْنَ أَجَلَهُنَّ فَأَمْسِکُوهُنَّ بِمَعْرُوفٍ أَوْ سَرِّحُوهُنَّ بِمَعْرُوفٍ ۚ وَلَا تُمْسِکُوهُنَّ ضِرَارًا لِّتَعْتَدُوا ۚ وَمَن یَفْعَلْ ذَٰلِکَ فَقَدْ ظَلَمَ نَفْسَهُ ۚ وَلَا تَتَّخِذُوا آیَاتِ اللَّهِ هُزُوًا ۚ وَاذْکُرُوا نِعْمَتَ اللَّهِ عَلَیْکُمْ وَمَا أَنزَلَ عَلَیْکُم مِّنَ الْکِتَابِ وَالْحِکْمَةِ یَعِظُکُم بِهِ ۚ وَاتَّقُوا اللَّهَ وَاعْلَمُوا أَنَّ اللَّهَ بِکُلِّ شَیْءٍ عَلِیم
When ye divorce women, and they fulfil the term of their (´Iddat), either take them back on equitable terms or set them free on equitable terms; but do not take them back to injure them, (or) to take undue advantage; if any one does that; He wrongs his own soul. Do not treat Allah´s Signs as a jest, but solemnly rehearse Allah´s favours on you, and the fact that He sent down to you the Book and Wisdom, for your instruction. And fear Allah, and know that Allah is well acquainted with all things.
Ahle Beit has expressed infallibility and purity in the description of this verse and it is meant that a man should not place a permit to refer to a woman in a divorce as the means of hurting woman.
It is important to note that domestic violence can be committed both by a man and by a woman. Therefore, Islamic narratives have prevented both women and from violence, but it is natural that men are more capable of violence, and if they do not control their anger, there is more likely to harm others. For this reason, the Islamic narrations have informed the public about this issue at several stages and in various cases. In the first stage, she has been prevented from marrying a bad-tempered man. Then he recommended men to take care of their wives. The Prophet said to men in Hajj al-Waada "The women of God's trusts are in the hands of you who have been made lawful with divine words." Then, he actually invited men to support women. It is a paired marriage that holds the responsibility of protecting a woman and even man can resort to violence to defend his wife from another attack.
Sometimes the narratives also consider instances of violence and they have criticized these behaviors such as:
"If a man makes a slap on the face of his wife, God will instruct the owner of Hell to impose seventy slaps his face";
"God does not love men who cry, and loves the soft voice";
"The worst person is a man who who slanders, is bad-tempered and uses impolite words. He alone eats and does not give forgiveness, and others seek refuge in his wife."
Sometimes the Prophet (peace of Allah be upon him and his descendants) put these men in a social strain and disrupted the image of men who hurt their family. Prophet tried to prevent the presence of Othman, the husband of Roghayeh (daughter of the Prophet), in her funeral and said in the following words: "One who harms his wife and daughter should not be brought to justice".
Another important point mentioned in the narrations is the effects of violence on spouses' marital relationships. In narratives, it is pointed out that there is a difference between the harassment of a woman and the husband's sexual request. In addition, the aforementioned narrations can point to the negative impact of violence on marital behaviors and mental harm inflicted on women through acts of violence has a decreasing effect on her desire and interest in this relationship.
According to the past Islamic traditions, attention has been paid to the violence of women and husbands, and they prevent women from harassing their husbands. As it is said, if a woman hurts her husband verbally, God will not accept her good deeds to satisfy her husband although she fasts for days and worships at night. The prophet of Allah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him and his descendants) says'' a devout women does not complain of her husband every day and a bad woman makes the life of her husband miserable''.
Although there are many narratives that can recommend to tolerate the inappropriate ethics of a wife or husband, none of them mean tolerance of violence.
It has been said about the ethics of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him and his descendants) "He was the kindest person who never killed anyone and did not curse a woman or a servant." No one was accused in his house, but he said'' make her free'' and if everyone (men, women, servants) came to him, he resolved his or her problem and collaborated with him or her.
Violence and religious Values
In addition to past personality factors, there are several concepts as religious values that justify misconceptions about domestic violence. One of these values is the matter of false bias. The nerve or spirit of protection of wife or daughter is the internal force that is inherently present in men. This inner power, like any other inner forces, can cause boredom and silence. The type of family and social training can lead to the strengthening or weakening of bias. This ability of divine grace is to protect family, honor and grace and at the same time, it can become a counter value. The intolerance of prejudices and the imposition of pressure on women and children outside the expectations of Islamic law, creating limitations leading to physical and psychological disturbance are considered as behaviors that Muslim men apply. Unfortunately, today, the killing of women and girls whose crimes have not been proved in the courts are done as false bias".
The presidency of the family is one of the occasional cases of violent behavior. Misunderstanding of this juridical right, which has great benefits to the family in its place, sometimes turns it into a counter value. Of course, it should not be forgotten about the effect of the customs and culture of oral communication among people and the media's influence on the spread of violence and its justification. In fact, such concepts are misused to justify the main grounds of violence.
On the other hand, women's disregard for an ethical value of women sometimes places them at risk of violence including sexual violence. In Islamic narratives, vanity in communicating to men in the society and fear from them to protect chastity are two values of women. Imam Ali (peace be upon him) states about praising these two attributes about women "A woman who is proud does not leave herself to anyone, and she is safe from what attacks her as long as she fears". In fact, these two values are essential for keeping chastity, avoiding instances of violence, avoiding sexual exploitation, and keeping grace for women.



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