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Women in Islam
The Women of Islam in The House of Allah Print E-mail
Articles - Women in Islam
Wednesday, 01 Sha'ban 1428

 

There is no doubt whatsoever that this essay is going to provoke both positive and negative responses from readers. But our purpose in writing it is to provoke enlightened responses from our intelligent readers — responses that would dispel complacency over (what this writer perceives as) unfortunate instances of misguided tradition. Let us at the outset remind the Muslim reader of the prophecy of Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allah Most High be upon him) concerning the Day of Judgment:

“Narrated Anas ibn Malik:

One day when the Messenger of Allah was sitting amongst us, he dozed off. He then raised his head, smiling. We asked: What makes you smile, Oh Messenger of Allah?
He said: A Surah has just been revealed to me, and then recited: ‘In the name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful. Verily We have given thee al-Kawthar (fountain of abundance). Therefore turn to thy Lord for prayer and offer sacrifice, and surely thy enemy is cut off (from the good).’ Then he (the Holy Prophet) asked: Do you know what al-Kawthar is? We said: Allah and His Messenger know best. The Holy Prophet said: It (Kawthar) is a fountain (spring or river) which my Lord, the Exalted and Glorious, has promised me, and there is an abundance of good in it. It is a cistern and my people will come to it on the Day of Resurrection, and cups there (for drinking) would be equal to the number of stars. A servant will be turned away from (among those gathered there). Upon this I shall say: My Lord, he is one of my people. He (the Lord) will say: You do not know that he created new things (in Islam) after you. Ibn Hujr made this addition in the Hadith: “ He (the Holy Prophet) was sitting amongst us in the mosque, and He (Allah) said: (You don’t know) what he innovated after you.”

(Sahih Muslim)

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The Philosophy of Gender in Islam Print E-mail
Articles - Women in Islam
Wednesday, 01 Sha'ban 1428

 

If God is a man, that’s bad news for women – because masculinity would then be divine – and hence only the male would have been created in the divine image. This explains why the feminist revolution has redefined God as being both male and female. Islam declares that Allah Most High created both the male and the female but is neither male nor female. In addition, He never appeared in the person of anyone, male or female. And so neither at point of creation, nor at any time thereafter, has the male ever defined the female in Islam. Islam is thus unique in offering to women the opportunity to pray to a God who is not a man.

Nor has Islam ever discriminated between the male and the female in an unjust way. A woman complained to the Prophet (peace be upon him) that divine revelation in the Qur’an was addressing men only. What about women? she asked. In response, revelation came down in the Qur’an that addressed both men and women in such constant repetition that the matter was conclusively settled that Allah Most High does not discriminate in matters concerning gender in any unjust way. Indeed the blessed Prophet declared that all of mankind (male and female) would stand before Allah on the Last Day “as equal in His sight as are the teeth of a comb.”

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Woman and Paradise in Islam Print E-mail
Articles - Women in Islam
Wednesday, 01 Sha'ban 1428

The secular feminist revolution rose upon the world from the West with an essentially godless agenda to liberate women from the “shackles” of the ages by totally transforming her status, role and function in society. In so doing it has turned the previous religious and sacred order upside-down in such a way that the sun now appears to be rising from the west.

Secularism led to materialism which in turn denied woman any reality beyond her material reality. Consequently the young beautiful woman became the goddess of the age. But she was a goddess who was shamelessly exploited in advertising to sell everything. She became a thing enjoyed, exploited, abused, degraded and discarded when her physical beauty and sex appeal began to wane. Then a host of schoolgirls would rush in to replace her. Even the national calypsonian gave his view on the subject quite some time ago when he sang of the prostitute, “… and if you catch them broken (i.e., in financial difficulty), you can get them all for nothing.”

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The Feminist Revolution and The Last Age Print E-mail
Articles - Women in Islam
Wednesday, 01 Sha'ban 1428

The Qur’an likened the creation of the male and the female to that of the ‘night’ and the ‘day’, implying that they complement each other “… like twin-halves of a whole.” But they are also functionally different; hence a successful and harmonious male-female relationship requires that the ‘day’ (i.e. the male) must function as ‘day’ and not try to become ‘night’, and similarly the ‘night’ (i.e., woman) must function as ‘night’ (which covers and conceals) and not try to become ‘day’. Prophet Muhammad (sallalahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) ordered, “. . when a girl reaches the age of puberty nothing must be seen of her body except this and this (he pointed to the face and hands).” And so Muslim women have always covered themselves in Hijab—concealing arms, legs, bellies, head, hair, etc., in loose-fitting clothing.

Since women have a basic function of bearing and rearing children it was necessary that they be freed of an obligation to earn their livelihood. Thus the Qur’an obliged men to maintain, as well as to guard and protect them, and, in turn, obliged a woman to be obedient to her husband or guardian. Men and women ought to marry in Allah’s blessed name, and live in accordance with His guidance. Then, says the Qur’an, “… Allah places love and kindness betwix their hearts” in consequence of which they experience Sukun, i.e., peace, contentment and tranquility.

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Can Muslims choose a Woman to Rule over Them? Print E-mail
Articles - Women in Islam
Wednesday, 17 Rajab 1428

THE QUR’AN AND THE RULE OF THE (MALE) IMAM

The Qur’an has delivered a stern warning concerning the choice of a ruler: “One day We shall call together all human beings with their Imam (i.e., ruler). . . “ (Qur’an, al-Isra, 17:71). The word Imam, when used in the Qur’an as well as in everyday language, refers to the ruler who rules, governs or leads. The Qur’an also uses the word Imam to mean a way or a book which leads or guides. However, in the context of the Last Day and of divine judgment over all of mankind, it would be irresponsible for anyone to exclude the meaning of the ruler who rules, governs or leads for the word Imam in the above verse of the Qur’an. Justice (as well as elementary common sense) demands that a leader or ruler (who was misguided or rightly-guided) should be brought along with his people when they are to be judged by Allah Most High.

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Betty Shabbazz ? What a Muslim woman! Print E-mail
Articles - Women in Islam
Sunday, 22 Rabi'ul Awal 1426
Even as we remember Malcolm X forty years later, we ought also to remember and honor his beloved wife, Dr. Betty Shabbazz. I met her twice.  The second time was when she was lying in her coffin beside Malcolm’s grave, and her six daughters had honored me by asking me to recite from the Qur’an and to offer a prayer over her body before it was lowered into her husband’s grave.


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