Rasoolullah Sallallaahu Alayhi Wa Sallam was informed about a man who had divorced a woman by pronouncing three divorces, in one breath, and all at the same time. On hearing this, our Nabi Sallallaahu Alayhi Wa Sallam stood up in anger and said, ”Is this the book of Allah being played around with, even whilst I am in your midst”?
One of the companions then stood up saying, “Shall I not kill him O Rasool of Allah?”
Hafiz ibn Qayyim, Hafiz ibn Hajar and Hafiz ibn Katheer have all confirmed that this Hadith is authentic with sound narrators.
In a nutshell the religion of Islam recognizes three stages in the procedures of divorce and has entrusted to man the absolute right of pronouncing three divorces. This does not mean that it is essential for man to issue all three divorces, nor can it be said that even one be used because Islam never encourages divorce as it is the only detestable action condoned only under extreme circumstances. So, if there is no option left in a marriage besides divorce, then only one divorce should be pronounced, allowing the term of iddat to proceed as prescribed. Upon completion of the iddat, the marriage would be severed completely and the lady would be free to marry another man if she wants to. This method of divorce-with just one pronouncement- is the best system. In it lies the advantage of reconciliation during the period of iddat , and even after the expiry of the iddat, a re-marriage (second Nikah) between the same couple would be valid if only one or two clear cut divorces had been issued. However, it should be borne in mind that the pronouncing of the second divorce is unnecessary and disliked because thereafter the man is left with only the final option of his limit of three divorces after which the same couple can never re-marry without the process of Halaalah.
THE PROCESS OF HALAALAH
If the husband pronounces the divorce a third time, then the woman shall not be lawful for him unless that woman marries another man and the second husband consummates the marriage and thereafter, of his own free will, divorces her, and the woman fulfils the period of iddat-only under these conditions can the first husband remarry her. In Shariah it is known as “Halaalah”. After “Halaalah” the first husband shall remarry her only when they intend to fulfil their mutual obligations and keep within the divine limits, otherwise there is the danger of recurrence of mutual dissentions and encroachments of mutual rights and obligations, and falling into sin.