Where do I draw the line in implementing the rule “lesser of the two evils?”

Answered according to Hanafi Fiqh by


Dear Mufti Ibrahim Desai Saheb,

As-Salam alai kum. How are you doing? I had recently asked a question, to which I got the following reply:

“We have studied your query and considered the different angles and dimensions of your situation. It is our opinion that your situation will be governed by the rule اهون البليتين (lesser of the two evils). To trim the beard is wrong. Divorce with its implications in your situation will be worse. Hence, if you are compelled to trim your beard, do so and make istighfaar. It is possible your wife seeks to appease or at lease suppress her inner most intimate feelings, through your outward appearance. Hence, her acceptance to allow to your full beard length upon being potent. It is also farz upon you to do whatever it takes to regain your potency. May Allah Taala grant you Aafiyah. Amin.

 And Allah Ta’āla Knows Best”

I continue to trim my beard as per your recommendation but I am a little confused now. I mean where should I draw the line? My wife refuses to let me wear an Islamic thowb in public but says that I must wear a pant and shirt.  Should I keep submitting to her wishes?  My wife refuses to wear a niqaab in public that covers her face, but only wears a “hijab”. She says I must let her or she will divorce me. Should I keep submitting to her wishes? 


Where do I draw the line in implementing the rule “lesser of the two evils?” Won’t Allah help me if I stand up for the sunnah of our beloved Prophet Muhammad (PBUH)? Won’t Allah put something in her heart that will change her mind from divorcing me? 

Please help! Jaza kum Allah kairan.  





Assalāmu `alaikum Warahmatullāhi Wabrakatuh,


To wear pants and shirt is permissible. If your wife does not wear niqab, that is no sin on you. Our advice to you is based on your personal circumstances and predicament.


And Allah Ta’ala Knows Best,


Muftī Ebrahim Desai

35 Candella Rd, Durban, South Africa

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