Q 1: A young boy or girl was breastfed by a certain woman
who doubted the times of breastfeeding that took place.
Yet, she says that when the baby was brought to her, both her breasts were filled with milk and the baby suckled until her breasts were light. What is the ruling on that? I witnessed this case myself. They want to marry the breastfed girl to a brother of the breastfeeding woman. What is the meaning of the statement of the Prophet (peace be upon him):
So anyone who avoids (Part No. 21; Page No. 140) the doubtful matters has protected their faith and their honor.
He (peace be upon him) also said:
Leave what causes you doubt and turn to what does not cause you doubt.
He (peace be upon him) also said to the man who came to ask him about Al-Birr (righteousness):
You have come to ask about Al-Birr (righteousness)?
Some scholars and Fuqaha' (Muslim jurists) also said: "If the breastfeeding woman doubts the times of breastfeeding that took place after the husband consummated marriage, then their marriage was built on certainty and it can only come to an end when there is certainty about the number of sucklings. Yet, if the breastfeeding woman doubts before they consummate marriage, they should be separated in order for them to be on the safe side and should not continue on doubts." Is this opinion correct or not?
The breastfeeding that prohibits marriage takes place only if the baby had five sucklings or more during the first two years of its life. The description of one suckling is as follows: A baby holds a breast, sucks milk, and then leaves it. If the baby comes to suck milk through it again, then it is considered to be a second suckling, and so forth. Accordingly, if the mentioned girl was breastfed by the mentioned woman five times or more during the first two years in the manner mentioned above, then it is not permissible for the brother of the breastfeeding woman through breastfeeding to marry this girl since he became her maternal uncle through breastfeeding. Allah (Glorified and Exalted be He) says:
Forbidden to you (for marriage) are: your mothers
...your brother’s daughters, your sister’s daughters
Allah also says:
The mothers shall give suck to their children for two whole years, (that is) for those (parents) who desire to complete the term of suckling
(Part No. 21; Page No. 141) The Prophet (peace be upon him) said:
Milk relationships are equal to blood relationships in rendering marriage unlawful i.e. Whatever prohibited due to blood relationships is also prohibited by milk relationships.
It is also authentically reported that
`Aishah (may Allah be pleased with her) said: "Amongst what was sent down of the Qur'an was 'ten known times of suckling forbid marriage. Then, it was abrogated by 'five known times of suckling'. When the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) died, the latter rule was in force." On the other hand, if the girl was breastfed less than five times or after the first two years (of her life), it is permissible for the mentioned man to marry the mentioned girl. It is worth mentioning that the doubted breastfeeding is null and unconsidered. As for the statement you cited by some scholars i.e. "what is based on certainty cannot be nullified due to doubt," this is correct. It is preferable for the mentioned man not to marry the mentioned girl to avoid doubt and to act according to the Hadiths mentioned in the question.May Allah grant us success. May Allah's Peace and Blessings be upon our Prophet and upon his family and Companions!