by Shaykh 'Abdul-'Azeez Ibn Baaz
The status of the Muslim woman in Islam is a very noble and lofty one, and her effect is very great in the life of every Muslim. Indeed, the Muslim woman is the initial teacher in the building of a righteous society, providing she follows the guidance from the Book of Allaah and the Sunnah of His Prophet sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. Since adherence to the Qur’aan and the Sunnah distances every Muslim - male or female- from being misguided in any matter...
The secret of her importance lies in the tremendous burden and responsibility that is placed upon her, and the difficulties that she has to shoulder - responsibilities and difficulties some of which not even a man bears. This is why from the most important obligations upon a person is to show gratitude to the mother, and kindness and good companionship with her. And in this matter, she is to be given precedence over and above the father...
A man came to Allaah’s Messenger sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam and said: O Messenger of Allaah! Who from amongst mankind warrants the best companionship from me? He replied:"Your mother." The man asked: Then who? So he replied: "Your mother." The man then asked: Then who? So the Prophet replied again: "Your mother." The man then asked: Then who? So he replied: "Then your father." [Related by al-Bukhaaree (no.5971) and Muslim (7/2), from Abu Hurayrah radiallaahu ‘anhu]. So this necessitates that the mother is given three times the like of kindness and good treatment than the father.
As regards the wife, then her status and her effect in making the soul tranquil and serene, has been clearly shown in the noble aayah (verse), in His - the Most High’s - saying:
"And from amongst His Signs is this: That He created for you wives from amongst yourselves, so that you may find serenity and tranquility in them. And He has put between you love and compassion. Indeed, in this are signs for those who reflect."[Soorah Room 30:21].
...And do not forget about ‘Aaishah - radiallaahu ‘anhaa - and her great effect. Since even the great Sahabah (Companions) used to take knowledge of Hadeeth from her, and many of the Sahaabiyaat (female Companions) learn the various rulings pertaining to women’s issues from her... And I have no doubt that my mother - may Allaah shower His mercy upon her - had a tremendous effect upon me, in encouraging me to study; and she assisted me in it. May Allaah greatly increase her reward and reward her with the best of rewards for what she did for me.
And there is no doubt also, that the house in which there is kindness, gentleness, love and care, along with the correct Islaamic tarbiyah (education and cultivation) will greatly affect the man. So he will become - if Allaah wills - successful in his affairs and in any matter - whether it be seeking knowledge, trading, earning a living, or other than this. So it is Allaah alone that I ask to grant success and to guide us all to that which He loves and is pleased with. And may the prayers and peace of Allaah be upon our Prophet Muhammad, and upon his Family, his Companions and his followers.
Source: Majmoo' Fataawaa wa Maqaalaat Mutanawwi'ah