Why prophet Muhammad married 9 wives?
Was it lust? was he sex addict?
Is he fulfilling an oppressed desire of women because he married a woman who is 20 years older than him when he was only 25 years old?
I'll try to present the answer within the following lines.
Prophet Muhammad was not the first prophet to have more than one wife:
Prophets who had more than one wife are as mentioned in Bible and Torah:
(I'm not sure of the wives name)
- Prophet Abraham: 3 wives (Sarah, Hagar, Caesura).
- Prophet Jacob: 4 wives (Lea, Zelda, Rachael, Palma).
- Prophet Moses: 4 wives (Safire, Gibshia, bint Kini, bint Hobab).
- Prophet David: 9 wives.
- Prophet Solomon: 700 wives and 300 slaves.
So multiple wives of prophets was not new or invented by prophet Muhammad…
Clearing a common misunderstanding:
- Prophet Muhammad PBUH ... was not married to 9 wives at the same time as everyone may think... but he married 9 times, he never had 9 wives at the same time.
- He never married while his first wife was alive, who died when he was 50 years old, when all lust and desire have faded.
- Most of the women he married were over 50 years old and sometimes older than him, widows and have children... so, if he is marrying for sex or lust, I believe he would have married younger and virgin women, all he had to do is ask, and all his companions will offer him their daughters, as this is considered an honor for them.
The prophet's wives: A closer look:
He married each of his wives for a reason.
I will try to list most of his wives as follows:
1. Lady Khadeeja:
- His first wife.
- was a widow.
- was 40 and he was 25 when they got married.
- was 65 and he was 50 when she died.
- lived together for 25 years.
- Never married again when she was alive.
- The year she died called the Sorrow year ... because he loved her so much.
2. Lady Sawda:
- Was a widow.
- Was 55 and he was 50 when they got married.
- She and her late husband ran away from their Folks after they became Muslims … so after her husband died she couldn’t go back to them … and she had no one to support her after him.
- People used to look down at widow women at these days… so he married her to break the rule.
3. Lady Aaisha:
- Was 9 or 11 when he married her.
- Her father was his best friend Abu-Bakkr … and best friends at these days was like brothers so one doesn’t marry his best friend’s daughter as if he is her uncle … so he married her to break the rule too …
- People at these days used to marry girls at this age … so it was not weird or strange to marry her in this age … besides she was considered ready to get married … an adult by this age …
- Loved her the most.
- Was the only one who was virgin when they got married.
- Was alive for 48 years after the death of the prophet.
- Was the main reference for everyone in all religion’s matters after the death of the prophet… including her father and the prophet’s companions.
4. Lady Hafsah:
- Her father was Omar-bin-AlKahttab … the prophet's best friend after Abu-Bakkr …
- Was a widow.
- So he married her because of her father … who gave a lot to Islam .. to honor him.
5. Lady Zienab bint Khouzaymah:
- Was 60 and he was 55 when they got married.
- Was a widow… and she used to help the wounded.
- When her husband died she had no one to help her or support her … so the prophet married her to give her shelter.
- Died two years after marrying the prophet.
6. Lady Om-Salamh:
- Was 55 and he was over 50 when they got married.
- Was a widow with 4 orphans... 2 boys and 2 girls.
- When the prophet knew about her he sent to her asking her to marry him … she refused and she said “I’m old and I’m a mother of orphans” … so he send to her telling her “I don’t care for your age and your children are mine”… so she accepted and they got married…
- He loved her children more than their true father.
7. Lady Zienab bint Gahsh:
- Was the prophet’s cousin … grew up in his house till he married her to Zayd (his manumitted slave).
- Before adoption was forbidden the prophet adopted one of his slaves whom he freed and called him “Zayd bin(son of) Muhammad” … but when adoption was prevented by verses that was sent to the prophet … people still consider Zayd the son of Muhammad … and the father doesn’t marry a woman who one day was the wife of his son and vice versa …
- So when Zayd married Zienab … she used to look down to him and tell him rough words because he used to be a slave … and he wanted to divorce her but the prophet asked him not to … but one day she talked very rough to him that he divorced her…
- So God sent some verses in the Quran telling prophet Muhammad PBUH that he must marry her to make people believe that he is not Zayd’s father
- The verses are: (33:37)
“And (remember) when you said to him (zayd bin Harithah ; the freed-slave of the Prophet) on whom Allah has bestowed Grace (by guiding him to Islam) and you (O Muhammad too) have done favour (by manumitting him) "Keep your wife to yourself, and fear Allah." But you did hide in yourself (i.e. what Allah has already made known to you that He will give her to you in marriage) that which Allah will make manifest, you did fear the people (i.e., Muhammad married the divorced wife of his manumitted slave) whereas Allah had a better right that you should fear Him. So when Zaid had accomplished his desire from her (i.e. divorced her), We gave her to you in marriage, so that (in future) there may be no difficulty to the believers in respect of (the marriage of) the wives of their adopted sons when the latter have no desire to keep them (i.e. they have divorced them). And Allah's Command must be fulfilled.”
So finally as you could see that the prophet:
- Didn't marry for lust: he was over 50 when he married for the second time, what kind of lust that can happen suddenly after 50.
- Didn't marry for sex: most of the women he married were over 50 and some of them were even older than he was, and had children.
- Never was married to 9 wives at the same time: instead, he was married 9 different times.