Dr. Zohurul Hoque & Husain Nuri
2:223 Your wives are a farm for you; so come to your farm as-and-when you please, and take steps for yourselves. And revere Allah; and know that you are going to meet Him. And give glad tidings to the Believers.
2:223 As with many instances in the Qur'ân metaphors are used to speak volumes in a succinct expression. Woman is compared with farm (harth) to illustrate physical, emotional, relational dynamics in her conjugal life with respect to her husband. Just as physical appeal, productivity and quality of the produce of a farm is dependent upon the efforts of the owner before and after cultivation as well as at the time of harvesting, so also physical, emotional and relational expression of a married woman is intimately connected with the manner her husband takes care of her in her everyday life. It is more about taking care of her than about gratifying male passion. A wise farmer does not merely plough, he also takes care of the farm all through the crop season and beyond, implied through the frequently ignored command and take steps for yourself. The permission given to the husband to approach his wife as-and-when he pleases cannot violate the correctness expected of a good cultivator when he goes to his farm. Only a stupid cultivator will cultivate his farm rampantly at odd seasons, plough after sowing seed, fertilize when not warranted and not fertilize when the crop most needs them, uproots the plants halfway through the season only to get excited over plowing again. The metaphor of farm and the approval to approach as-and when he pleases is overtly misinterpreted and manipulated by androcentric society to the extent of damaging and unduly harming the female members of the society.
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