otherworldlyThe Quran often uses words with heavy imagery to solidify the point that it’s making. In Surah Tahrim, Allah consoles the Messenger with regards to a breach of trust among his wives. He shared a secret with one of them and later discovered that they spread it. Allah strongly reprimands the Prophet’s spouses and warns them that if they do not act righteously that he will replace them with women who are purer and better in conduct.

Describing these ideal women, Allah uses many poignant adjectives, of which is the word سَائِحَة, which roughly translates into one who is spiritual, or not interested/invested in the material world.

It comes from the root س ي ح ,which, when taken literally, means to flow, or to pass over, as a river flows over land. Interestingly, سياح, which also derives from this root, means traveler. This makes sense since a traveler only passes through places, and doesn’t stay long, just like the water of a flowing river.

So a سَائِحَة is someone, in this case a woman, whose heart is elsewhere and has no taste or passion for this material world, one who passes through it as a traveller, in accordance to the Hadith of the Prophet SAWS: “Be in this world as if you are a traveler.”

We ask Allah to prevent us from attaching to our temporary world, and to allow us to return home to Jannah safely after passing through the journey of this life.