Did Abu Bakr and Umar Slap Their Daughters?

A comment on a Hadith which may be confusing some people. This Hadith has Abu Bakr “slap” Aisha and Umar “slap” Hafsa. However, I did a brief search of the Arabic word used in the hadith – the word used for slapped – on an Arabic website. The website said the word وجاء is like طعن.  I checked this word which the site gave as a synonym and it doesn’t mean slap – it seems more like poke.

There’s also a forum discussion saying it doesn’t mean slap but poke here. Here’s the relevant bit from the comment explaining it:

The translation of the Hadith is wrong because the word which was used in the Hadith, in Arabic is ” فوجأت “ which means I poked or hit. This is a form of teaching or alerting about an incident you do not approve besides this is an act that does not cause harm at all.

Example: If your brother does something wrong or you knew he is doing something wrong, you may come to him and poke him with your hand on his waist or shoulder as a way to show your frustration and disapproval for what he does. The same applies here..

Notice the word slapped is used in this translation:

Jabir b. ‘Abdullah (Allah be pleased with them) reported:

Abu Bakr (Allah be pleased with him) came and sought permission to see Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ). He found people sitting at his door and none amongst them had been granted permission, but it was granted to Abu Bakr and he went in. Then came ‘Umar and he sought permission and it was granted to him, and he found Allah’s Apostle (ﷺ) sitting sad and silent with his wives around him. He (Hadrat ‘Umar) said: I would say something which would make the Prophet (ﷺ) laugh, so he said: Messenger of Allah, I wish you had seen (the treatment meted out to) the daughter ofKhadija when you asked me some money, and I got up and slapped her on her neck. Allah’s Messenger (mav peace be upon him) laughed and said: They are around me as you see, asking for extra money. Abu Bakr (Allah be pleased with him) then got up went to ‘A’isha (Allah be pleased with her) and slapped her on the neck, and ‘Umar stood up before Hafsa and slapped her saying: You ask Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) which he does not possess. They said: By Allah, we do not ask Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) for anything he does not possess. Then he withdrew from them for a month or for twenty-nine days. Then this verse was revealed to him:” Prophet: Say to thy wives… for a mighty reward” (xxxiii. 28). He then went first to ‘A’isha (Allah be pleased with her) and said: I want to propound something to you, ‘A’isha, but wish no hasty reply before you consult your parents. She said: Messenger of Allah, what is that? He (the Holy Prophet) recited to her the verse, whereupon she said: Is it about you that I should consult my parents, Messenger of Allah? Nay, I choose Allah, His Messenger, and the Last Abode; but I ask you not to tell any of your wives what I have said He replied: Not one of them will ask me without my informing her. God did not send me to be harsh, or cause harm, but He has sent me to teach and make things easy.



However, in this translation (from the site where I looked into the Arabic word) in their English translation they do not use the word slap but rather poke:



Abu Bakr once came and sought permission to see the Messenger of Allaah, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. He found people sitting at his door and none amongst them had been granted permission, but it was granted to Abu Bakr and he went in. Then came ‘Umar and he sought permission, and it was granted to him, and he found the Messenger of Allaah, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, sitting, sad and silent, with his wives around him. He [‘Umar] said,  “I wanted to say something which would make the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, laugh, so he said, “Messenger of Allaah, I wish you had seen [the treatment meted out to] the daughter of Khaarijah [i.e., his wife] when she asked me for some money;  I got up and poked her on her neck.” The Messenger of Allaah, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, laughed and said:“They are around me, as you see, asking for provision.” Abu Bakr then got up, went to ‘Aa’ishah, may Allaah be pleased with her, and poked her on the neck, and ‘Umar stood up in front of Hafsah and poked her saying, “You ask the Messenger of Allaah for that which he does not possess?” They said, “By Allaah, we do not ask the Messenger of Allaah for anything that he does not possess.” Then he withdrew from them for a month or for twenty-nine days after which this verse was revealed to him



I think it would be extremely unwise and unfair to say they slapped their daughters (to hurt them) in the light of this information.





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