The domestic life of the Noble Prophet (ﷺ)
The responsibilities of the Prophet of Islam, peace be upon him (ﷺ), in his life outside were so diverse and extensive that spending time with his family and taking care of the rights of his family members and relatives was a challenging task in the context of his time. However, it becomes clear from the study of the blessed life that whether it was his pure wives, obedient children, relatives, or friends, he, peace be upon him (ﷺ), always observed the rights of everyone. At any point in his life, he did not overlook these rights. He, peace be upon him (ﷺ), not only held the position of a provider and a strict head of the household, but in the matter of the rights of wives, he was a loving husband; in the matter of the rights of children, he was a compassionate and affectionate father; and in the matter of the rights of servants, he was a generous and gentle master. This is how the image of the Prophet, peace be upon him (ﷺ), emerges in various aspects of life.
With chaste spouses, good behavior
You (ﷺ) have guided us: The best among you is the one who is the best to his family, and I am the best among you to my family. Once, you (ﷺ) said: The true believers are those who are good in character, and among you, the best are those who are good to their wives. The Prophet of Islam (ﷺ) had a total of eleven marriages, and at one time, he had nine wives. It was his regular practice that after the Asr prayer in Medina, he would visit all his wives, inquire about their needs, and complete their requirements. It was not obligatory in Islamic law, but he (ﷺ) personally took it upon himself with great diligence. Once, Hazrat Hafsa (رضي الله عنها) gave her turn to Hazrat Aisha (رضي الله عنها). When the Prophet (ﷺ) went to Hazrat Aisha’s (رضي الله عنها) house, he asked, ‘Where is Hafsa’s turn?’ Hazrat Aisha (رضي الله عنها) replied, ‘It is Allah’s favor; He gives it to whomever He wills.’ There was such a strong sense of justice among the wives, and in this matter, they relied on Allah’s judgment so much that they would supplicate to Allah, the Lord of Honor. It was the Prophet’s (ﷺ) custom that when he embarked on a journey, he would draw lots among his wives to determine which one would accompany him.
Good Behavior with Children
You had a great love for the Prophet Muhammad (ﷺ) and would greet the children with a smile when you met them while they were playing in the streets. At home, you would play with the children, lift them onto your shoulders, hug them, and show them affection. It was evident that your temperament was not so stern that the children would be frightened when they saw you and started hiding. Hazrat Usama bin Zaid (رضي الله عنه) said that once he came to you out of a need, and he realized that you were lifting something heavy. He asked, and you (ﷺ) replied, ‘These are both my sons, and they are the sons of my daughter. O Allah, I love them, so love them and love the one who loves them.’
Your domestic life, O Prophet (ﷺ), also reflected the same gentle and humorous nature of Islam. Once, during the Eid al-Fitr celebration in the Masjid al-Nabawi, some young Abyssinians were performing a dance. Hazrat Aisha (رضي الله عنها) said that she expressed her desire to watch, and you (ﷺ) stood in front of her, and she watched the dance through the gap between your shoulder and neck.
When Ummul Momineen Hazrat Aisha (رضي الله عنها) came to Medina as a bride, she was not very old. She used to play with her friends and dolls. But you (ﷺ) never expressed any displeasure. Sometimes, in the presence of the wives of the Prophet (ﷺ), you would also engage in light-hearted conversations.
Hazrat Aisha (رضي الله عنها) mentioned that once there was a race between both of you, and she was slender at the time. She won the race, and you (ﷺ) conceded victory. Later, the same race was held again, and this time you (ﷺ) won. You (ﷺ) said, ‘This makes us even.
Good treatment with slaves and servants
The Prophet (ﷺ) addressed the people, saying, ‘Treat your slaves and servants well. Feed them with the same food you eat, clothe them with the same clothes you wear. And do not burden them with work beyond their capacity. If you give them any task to do, help them with it.’ The Prophet (ﷺ) then said, ‘Your slaves are your brothers. Allah has put them under your authority, so whoever has his brother under his authority, should feed him with the same food he eats and clothe him with the same clothes he wears. Do not burden them beyond their capacity, and if you do so, help them.’ The Prophet (ﷺ) further added, ‘I am not saying this only about my companions but about everyone in general.’ Then a man stood up and said, ‘O Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ)! I have a slave.’ The Prophet (ﷺ) replied, ‘Bring him to me.’ So he brought him to him and the Prophet (ﷺ) said, ‘Release him, as the value of your slave is his price.'”
“The Prophet’s (ﷺ) Usual Manners at Home: When the Prophet (ﷺ) entered his house, he used to say the greeting of peace (Salam) and make his arrival known in a gentle manner so as not to awaken those who were sleeping. He would engage in household chores and sometimes milk the goats himself. The food that was prepared at home was presented to him, and he would eat what he liked. He never found fault with the food. After the daytime meal, he would take a short nap. After the ‘Isha prayer, he discouraged unnecessary talk and would go to bed. His bed was simple and sometimes it was made of leather filled with date-palm fibers or simply a mat. He would rest on it comfortably.”
“A Complete and Exemplary Human Life: The foundation of a complete and exemplary human life lies in how one deals with people from all walks of life – rulers and subjects, friends and enemies, family and strangers, rich and poor. The Prophet (ﷺ) demonstrated not only how to lead a life of piety and worship but also how to interact with family, servants, children, relatives, and close ones with kindness and respect. His life serves as an example for all aspects of life, including family and social interactions.”
“The Prophet’s (ﷺ) Model for Domestic Life: The Prophet (ﷺ) established a model for domestic life and practiced it himself, showing that he was the best example for married life and a solution for all kinds of disturbances. In the life of the Prophet (ﷺ), we find guidance on how to lead a harmonious and righteous domestic life. We can look to the Prophet’s (ﷺ) blessed life as a guide for living our domestic lives correctly.”