Reality of Islam

Home » Does Islam Oppress Women By Keeping Them In Veil?

Does Islam Oppress Women By Keeping Them In Veil?


 

1. In the past women were degraded and used as objects of lust

The following examples from history amply illustrate the fact that the status of

women in earlier civilizations was very low to the extent that they were denied

basic human dignity:

a. Babylonian Civilization:

The women were degraded and were denied all rights under the Babylonian

law. If a man murdered a woman, instead of him being punished, his wife

was put to death.

b. Greek Civilization:

Greek Civilization is considered the most glorious of all ancient civilizations.

Under this very ‘glorious’ system, women were deprived of all rights and

were looked down upon. In Greek mythology, an ‘imaginary woman’ called

‘Pandora’ is the root cause of misfortune of human beings. The Greeks

considered women to be subhuman and inferior to men. Though chastity of

women was precious, and women were held in high esteem, the Greeks

were later overwhelmed by ego and sexual perversions. Prostitution

became a regular practice amongst all classes of Greek society.

c. Roman Civilization:

When Roman Civilization was at the zenith of its ‘glory’, a man even had the

right to take the life of his wife. Prostitution and nudity were common

amongst the Romans.

d. Egyptian Civilization:

The Egyptian considered women evil and as a sign of a devil.

e. Pre-Islamic Arabia:

Before Islam spread in Arabia, the Arabs looked down upon women and

very often when a female child was born, she was buried alive.

2. Islam uplifted women and gave them equality and expects them

to maintain their status.

Islam uplifted the status of women and granted them their just rights 1400 years

ago. Islam expects women to maintain their status.

Hijab for men

People usually only discuss ‘hijab’ in the context of women. However, in the

Glorious Qur’an, Allah (swt) first mentions ‘hijab’ for men before ‘hijab’ for the

women. The Qur’an mentions in Surah Noor:

“Say to the believing men that they should lower their gaze and guard

their modesty: that will make for greater purity for them: and Allah is

well acquainted with all that they do.”

[Al-Qur’an 24:30]

The moment a man looks at a woman and if any brazen or unashamed thought

comes to his mind, he should lower his gaze.

Hijab for women.

The next verse of Surah Noor, says:

“ And say to the believing women that they should lower their gaze and

guard their modesty; that they should not display their beauty and

ornaments except what (must ordinarily) appear thereof; that they

should draw veils over their bosoms and not display their beauty

except to their husbands, their fathers, their husbands’ fathers, their

sons…”

[Al-Qur’an 24:31]

3. Six criteria for Hijab.

According to Qur’an and Sunnah there are basically six criteria for observing

hijab:

1. Extent:

The first criterion is the extent of the body that should be covered. This is

different for men and women. The extent of covering obligatory on the male

is to cover the body at least from the navel to the knees. For women, the

extent of covering obligatory is to cover the complete body except the face

and the hands upto the wrist. If they wish to, they can cover even these

parts of the body. Some scholars of Islam insist that the face and the hands

are part of the obligatory extent of ‘hijab’.

 

4. Hijab includes conduct and behaviour among other things

Complete ‘hijab’, besides the six criteria of clothing, also includes the moral

conduct, behaviour, attitude and intention of the individual. A person only

fulfilling the criteria of ‘hijab’ of the clothes is observing ‘hijab’ in a limited sense.

‘Hijab’ of the clothes should be accompanied by ‘hijab’ of the eyes, ‘hijab’ of the

heart, ‘hijab’ of thought and ‘hijab’ of intention. It also includes the way a person

walks, the way a person talks, the way he behaves, etc.

5. Hijab prevents molestation

The reason why Hijab is prescribed for women is mentioned in the Qur’an in the

following verses of Surah Al-Ahzab:

“O Prophet! Tell thy wives and daughters, and the believing women

that they should cast their outer garments over their persons (when

abroad); that is most convenient, that they should be known (as such)

and not molested. And Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.”

[Al-Qur’an 33:59]

The Qur’an says that Hijab has been prescribed for the women so that they are

recognized as modest women and this will also prevent them from being

molested.

6. Example of twin sisters

Suppose two sisters who are twins, and who are equally beautiful, walk down

the street. One of them is attired in the Islamic hijab i.e. the complete body is

covered, except for the face and the hands up to the wrists. The other sister is

wearing western clothes, a mini skirt or shorts. Just around the corner there is

a hooligan or ruffian who is waiting for a catch, to tease a girl. Whom will he

tease? The girl wearing the Islamic Hijab or the girl wearing the skirt or the mini?

Naturally he will tease the girl wearing the skirt or the mini. Such dresses are an

indirect invitation to the opposite sex for teasing and molestation. The Qur’an

rightly says that hijab prevents women from being molested.

 

 Under the Islamic shariah, a man convicted of having raped a woman, is given

capital punishment. Many are astonished at this ‘harsh’ sentence. Some even

say that Islam is a ruthless, barbaric religion! I have asked a simple question to

hundreds of non-Muslim men. Suppose, God forbid, someone rapes your wife,

your mother or your sister. You are made the judge and the rapist is brought in

front of you. What punishment would you give him? All of them said they would

put him to death. Some went to the extent of saying they would torture him to

death. To them I ask, if someone rapes your wife or your mother you want to put

him to death. But if the same crime is committed on somebody else’s wife or

daughter you say capital punishment is barbaric. Why should there be double

standards?

8. Western society falsely claims to have uplifted women

Western talk of women’s liberalization is nothing but a disguised form of

exploitation of her body, degradation of her soul, and deprivation of her honour.

Western society claims to have ‘uplifted’ women. On the contrary it has actually

degraded them to the status of concubines, mistresses and society butterflies

who are mere tools in the hands of pleasure seekers and sex marketeers,

hidden behind the colourful screen of ‘art’ and ‘culture’.

9. USA has one of the highest rates of rape

United States of America is supposed to be one of the most advanced countries

of the world. It also has one of the highest rates of rape in any country in the

world. According to a FBI report, in the year 1990, every day on an average

1756 cases of rape were committed in U.S.A alone. Later another report said

that on an average everyday 1900 cases of rapes are committed in USA. The

year was not mentioned. May be it was 1992 or 1993. May be the Americans

got ‘bolder’ in the following years.

Consider a scenario where the Islamic hijab is followed in America. Whenever

a man looks at a woman and any brazen or unashamed thought comes to his

mind, he lowers his gaze. Every woman wears the Islamic hijab, that is the

complete body is covered except the face and the hands upto the wrist. After

this if any man commits rape he is given capital punishment. I ask you, in such

a scenario, will the rate of rape in America increase, will it remain the same, or

will it decrease?

10. Implementation of Islamic Shariah will reduce the rate of rapes

Naturally as soon as Islamic Shariah is implemented positive results will be

inevitable. If Islamic Shariah is implemented in any part of the world, whether it

is America or Europe, society will breathe easier. Hijab does not degrade a

woman but uplifts a woman and protects her modesty and chastity.

2. The clothes worn should be loose and should not reveal the figure.

3. The clothes worn should not be transparent such that one can see through

them.

4. The clothes worn should not be so glamorous as to attract the opposite sex.

5. The clothes worn should not resemble that of the opposite sex.

6. The clothes worn should not resemble that of the unbelievers i.e. they

should not wear clothes that are specifically identities or symbols of the

unbelievers’ religions.

All the remaining five criteria are the same for men and women.

The status of women in Islam is often the target of attacks in the secular media.

The ‘hijab’ or the Islamic dress is cited by many as an example of the

‘subjugation’ of women under Islamic law. Before we analyze the reasoning

behind the religiously mandated ‘hijab’, let us first study the status of women in

societies before the advent of Islam

Advertisements
%d bloggers like this: