Things that make a man happy and things that make him miserable: A tremendous hadeeth.

Sa’d Ibn Abī Waqqās (I) stated that Allah’s Messenger (z) said:

[arabic-font]ثلاث من السعادة وثلاث من الشقاوة : فمن السعادة : المرأة تراها تعجبك ، وتغيب فتأمنها على نفسها ومالك ، والدابة تكون وطيئة فتلحقك بأصحابك ، والدار تكون واسعة كثيرة المرافق ، ومن الشقاوة : المرأة تراها فتسوءك ، وتحمل لسانها عليك ، وإن غبت عنها لم تأمنها على نفسها ومالك ، والدابة تكون قَطوفا فإن ضربتها أتعبتك ، وإن تركتها لم تلحقك بأصحابك ، والدار تكون ضيقة قليلة المرافق[/arabic-font]


“There are three things that bring about happiness and three that bring about misery. So from happiness is:

  • A wife who when you look at her pleases you much; and when you are absent you still trust her with respect to herself and your wealth.
  • A good easy riding beast that enables you to reach your companions.
  • A spacious home that has much by way of facilities.

And from misery is:

  • A wife who when you look at her you see bad; she uses her tongue to speak against you; and when you are absent, you cannot trust her with respect to herself or your wealth.
  • A difficult and disinclined riding beast; if you whip it, you only tire yourself out and if you leave it alone it will not carry you to your companions.
  • A narrow and constricted home with very little by way of facilities.”

Shaikh Al-Albānī (V) authenticated this narration in Silsilatul-Ahādīth as-Saheehah no. 1047 as hasan: It was reported by Al-Hākim (2/162).

Sa’d Ibn Abī Waqqās (I) reported that Allah’s Messenger (z) said:

[arabic-font]أربع من السعادة : المرأة الصالحة ، والمسكن الواسع ، والجار الصالح ، والمركب الهنيء ، وأربع من الشقاوة : الجار السوء ، والمرأة السوء ، والمسكن الضيق ، والمركب السوء[/arabic-font]


“Four things bring about happiness: 

  • A righteous wife.
  • A spacious home.
  • A righteous neighbour.
  • A good and easy-going riding beast.

Four things bring about misery:

  • A wicked neighbour.
  • A wicked wife.
  • A narrow and constricted home.
  • A difficult and disinclined riding beast.”

Shaikh Al-Albānī (V) authenticated this narration in Silsilatul-Ahādīth as-Saheehah no. 282: It was reported by Ibn Hibbān in his Saheeh no. 1232; Ahmad (1/168).

These affairs are as relevant today as they were in the time of Prophethood. Every man with any self-respect would desire a righteous, trustworthy and honorable wife. A pleasant-looking wife who beautifies herself daily for her husband (as he does for her too!). She honors him when he is present and he trusts her completely whilst he is absent with respect to her honour, chastity, and with his wealth and property. She allows none to enter the family home except one whom her husband is pleased with.

A man is pleased with a spacious home with plentiful facilities that give ease and comfort to the family; they show gratitude to Allah for what he has provided them by worshipping Him, remembrance (dhikr) and obedience to Him. The home is the sanctuary of the wife and family, it is a place of tarbiyah for the children, a place a worship for the womenfolk – so the man should make it comfortable, spacious and well-facilated if he able to do so.

A righteous neighbour will protect you, honour you, and hide your faults. He will not encroach on your privacy and he is a doorway for you to attain much reward from Allah. A wicked neighbour by contrast is untrustworthy, you do not feel safe for your wife and family when you are away, so he becomes a source of misery.

A riding beast that is agile and fast, takes you to your destination and to your companions; and does not cause you distress – this is from the things that bring joy to a man. So whilst he is upon his riding beast, he is content and thus busies himself with remembrances, supplications and recitation of Qur’an. This hadeeth also includes other means of travel that Allah has provided such as ships, cars and so on. Allah has stated:

[arabic-font] وَسَخَّرَ لَكُمُ الْفُلْكَ لِتَجْرِيَ فِي الْبَحْرِ بِأَمْرِهِ ۖ وَسَخَّرَ لَكُمُ الْأَنْهَارَ[/arabic-font]


“…and Allah has subjected for you the ships to sail through the sea by His command and subjected for you the rivers.” (Ibrahim: 32)


[arabic-font]وَالْخَيْلَ وَالْبِغَالَ وَالْحَمِيرَ لِتَرْكَبُوهَا وَزِينَةً ۚ وَيَخْلُقُ مَا لَا تَعْلَمُونَ[/arabic-font]


“And He created the horses, mules and donkeys for you to ride and as adornment. And He creates that which you do not know.” (An-Nahl:8)


So let each person show gratitude to Allah for what He has provided and seek that which will bring him closer to Allah, both in this life and the next. And from the best of affairs in this life is a righteous spouse who will aid one in the worldly and religious affairs.

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