For What Good

This is the question that the always stimulating Organic Muslimah is asking of women in the West who wear the niqab. Since my writings tend to get a bit lengthy, I decided to answer the question on my own blog. Also, while this was triggered by Organica’s post, this is more of a response to a variety of questions by others on the opposite end of the niqab spectrum. So, it’s not personal to any particular blogger at all.

First of all, I take a bit of an issue with the question, for it appears to imply that whatever good there is in the niqab, it is so negligible that the bad surely outweighs it. The reason I feel the weight of such an implication, real or imagined, is because I generally feel offended when I hear any Muslim ask, “What is the good in doing such and such Islamically ordained deed?” Mainly, I feel this way because the good is fairly obvious: it (whatever it is) is (supposed to be) pleasing to Allah. Regardless of whether or not that implication is my own interpretation, it is a good question, and as a muntaqiba in America, I feel compelled to address it.

The idea of children being scared after seeing a woman all covered up is definitely an issue. Indeed, adults do also gasp in shock, horror, whatever upon seeing a niqabi. These reactions, however, are far from the norm, for Americans of non-Muslim inclination are no more monolithic than Muslims are. There are a good deal of Americans, children and adult alike, who display absolutely no amount of fear when confronted by a niqabi. For me, as a Muslim woman, to base my mode of dressing on how others might respond is both unrealistic and impossible. Where I to shed my niqab, and only go forth with hijab and abaya, I would be then asked to remove one more layer: my abaya, for perhaps the abaya makes me look dowdy and oppressed. Once I remove my abaya, I might then be asked to remove my hijab, or wear it in a way that is more fashionable, more attractive, more whatever. At what point do we say, “Enough. I am not shedding any more of my self for you. It is about time for you to accept what you see and hear of me?” It invites a domino effect to the manipulation of our values, and it assumes that the vast majority of Americans are shallow enough to not accept us for who we are. This, I have found, is definitely not the case.

Do we have a responsibility to make sure that people not feel threatened by us? Sure, we do, to an extent. I will be the first to wave hello to a child, and smile at their mother to make her comfortable and not think that I’m trying to sweet-talk their kid into a kidnapping. It’s a tenuous balance, indeed, but not anything that any niqabi is incapable of achieving. Walking along in a bubble and pretending that it doesn’t matter that 1 out of 10 children is going to be scared of us is naive, unproductive, and downright selfish. So, niqabis, make the effort to make your surroundings comfortable with you, as much as you expect them to be comfortable with you. For the kids, it’s worth it. And who the heck wants to scare a kid into screaming for hours just coz he saw a thing in black? Humanizing ourselves with a wave and a cheery, “Hi!” usually goes a long way to avoid such a screaming situation. Also, there was a time when the entire United States feared black men, and while today there are pockets of resistance, they are small enough that a black man, one generation removed from Africa not only ran for President, but actually won. People will be scared of millions of things; changing ourselves to “help” them overcome their irrational fears is not a solution…it’s a band-aid.

The other issue that was brought up in the blog post was that of doing effective da’wah, and that most non-Muslims are familiar with the niqab as an Islamic construct, but not with the fact that Islam preaches belief in One God, the most basic and fundamental of Islamic principles. This is unfortunate, but it is way too simple to think that removing our niqaab is the solution to effectively teach those around us about Islam. If we were to shed every physical, outward difference between ourselves and the dominant culture, why would anyone be interested in Islam? Who would know that Muslims walk among us? I would assume that more da’wah has been conveyed since Muslims in the West assumed Islamic garb in the past 10-20 years than in all decades before in which Muslim were a completely invisible minority. The niqab is more of a springboard to da’wah than one would assume…or maybe that’s just specific to my own location in the United States. The ones who are freaked out at the sight of a muntaqibah are not usually the ones who are all that open to da’wah.

Another aspect of da’wah is this: how do I convey the teachings of Islam if I find reasons to avoid practicing some teachings that may be inconvenient/difficult/impractical? When I dispose of the niqab, in the same way and for the same reasons that some dispose of hijab, or the beard, for the sake of my own insecurities, am I not in effect saying that Islam is full of disposable requirements? Islam is an easy and flexible religion, but to dispense with things rather than confronting the obstacles they present is simply making it all way too easy. Many niqabis prefer to take the path less traveled, because someone has to do it…and if we’re able to handle the risks and responsibilities of it all, then we might as well seize the moment. We all keep different sunnahs alive; that is part of the diversity of Islam, no matter where we are. How will anyone ever know an unoppressed, fully covered Muslim woman if we all just ditched the niqab, and simply talked the talk without walking the walk?

Are there times when a woman in niqab is not going to be able to participate in certain aspects of life? You bet. It’s virtually impossible to obtain a professional job in this country while fully covered. This is a compromise that any muntaqibah who needs a job (and there are many of us) will acknowledge. Perhaps this will mean being a part-time niqabi, and that is something some of us do grapple with in order to get by in this world.

Ultimately, I keep coming back to the idea of limits and boundaries. When we give one thing up, and then another, and then another, when do we stop? Do we finally just give it all up, call ourselves Muslims, and that’s it? All because everyone is too scared of us, or because we’re afraid to take the risk that someone might spit in the face of our faith? When we’ve given up everything, and all that’s left is “There is no God but Allah, and Muhammed is His final Messenger,” will someone come along and ask us, “Why say Allah, when God is the same thing, and is less scary to me as a non-Muslim?” And then what will we say? Will we say “ok, for the greater good of making you comfortable?” When do we stand our ground and demand that others be comfortable with us on our terms, in the same way that we, the majority of Muslims, are comfortable with them on their own terms? Do we demand it once we’ve given it all up, and it no longer even matters? It’s a subtle and silent form of activism, and I really don’t see it as a form of tarnishing the image of Islam. Indeed, I am rather disturbed when I hear people proclaim that adhering to one aspect or another of Islamic teachings tarnishes the message of Islam.

And finally, where I always differ with other Muslims is on the premise of Islam needing a makeover to make it more palatable to the eyes of the world. Muslims need a makeover, not Islam. We can rearrange the pieces of the Islam puzzle till it’s a shadow of itself, but it will be of no use to us or the world. The Qur’an exhorts us to change our condition, precisely because it’s so much more tempting to change the tenets of the faith. We can be kind, we can be good, we can be dignified, and we can do it with a veil or a beard…or not. One demands a makeover of ourselves, which is what Islam demands of us anyway…the other option is a makeover of our faith.

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22 Responses to For What Good

  1. Organica says:

    Excellent and through response, my dear! Job well done. I applaud you for well taken points and your explanation is from the heart, indeed!

    I would say though that most Shyookh do not believe niqab as fard, so why in the West if it isn’t?

    You say, “Do we finally just give it all up, call ourselves Muslims, and that’s it?”

    No one said to give up the fara’id (mandatory obligations) for the sake of compromise. But I do believe many women wear it as a way to get closer to Allah (swt), but not as a fard. And fard means it’s a sin for a person not to follow.

    I am not calling women to take off their niqab. They can keep it on as they wish, and as I state, I will support this decision as guaranteed by the free country we live in. But what is the good that comes out of it? Why not be in the “middle” as the prophet taught us.

    You said it yourself:

    -Niqabi find it very difficult to find any work
    -Niqabis are harassed in public
    -Niqabis get too much attention
    -Niqabis convey a message that they don’t want to be part of society or at least that is how it is perceived. When a niqabi is around, I guarantee no one will approach her to ask the time or ask directions to a certain place. I don’t think the Prophet wanted us to be unapproachable!

    In conclusion, niqab works and is probably mandatory in some parts of the world. I don’t think the West is one of them.

    My respects!

    Organica

  2. mems says:

    Can I just say how much I enjoy your writing? When you present issues like this, clearly expressing your thoughts and opinions, I’m just left speechless…and a little envious. LOL. I wish I could be half as eloquent as you.

  3. yumna says:

    Subhanallah, what a great writer. i agree with u totally. we need to do what our religion tells us to do. after all, that will guide us to jannah and the people for whom we sacrifice wont come in our graves and save us.
    as for organica, people have asked me directions, time and everything and i live in chicago. infact they are very nice towards me with a very few exceptions. and also, this is a totally different topic and many might not agree but women are very privileged in islam because they dont have to earn unless they are extremely needy. it is a man’s job. women are supposed to take care of kids, learn about their deen and spread it to fellow sisters. so its ok if they dont get a job somewhere or people avoid them. because to talk to a non mahram is definitely a no no in our religion unless out of necessity and since in the states you are surrounded by men and you have to deal with them.so either way niqab or no niqab being a muslim and especially a women, you have to be stern and strong when talking to a non mahram man and talk only if required rather then laughing and getting all friendly. you have to look at the bigger picture that you are pleasing Allah rather than people.
    and you need to read in Quran and hadith where it says niqab is necessary and a religious requirement.
    and Allah knows best and may He guide us all to the right path Inshallah.

    • yumna, Welcome, and jazakiAllah khair for your kind thoughts and words 🙂 There are many women who don’t have kids, and there are many who actually need a professional life outside the home for their own sanity. When I speak of a needs-based argument for women working, whether in the West or the East, I am by no means talking about a strictly financially-based argument. Also, in today’s time, there are very few Muslim men who believe a woman does not need to contribute financially to a household’s income. Women’s privilege in Islam has very little to do with women’s state in the world today, and every woman must be prepared to earn a living, niqabi or not. And that might lead to some compromises in the way we dress, etc., but I really think it would take us further to be aware that we are compromising on Islam’s requirements, and not expecting Islam to compromise for us. You’re right, that was a totally different topic… 🙂

  4. Organica, Thank you 🙂 I deliberately avoided taking it in a fiqh direction, for I don’t see how the niqab can ever be viewed as less than wajib, and very potentially fardh. Wajib in and of itself is a very strong recommendation to adhere to something, and needs more of an argument against it than “it covers up the real meaning of Islam, so let’s temporarily (or permanently!) down-grade it to a nafl (completely optional) action.” It’s entirely possible for someone to dispense with the niqab for reasons of needing to find a dignified income, for that is a need-based argument. Acknowledging the niqab as either a fardh or wajib need not be mutually exclusive from counting it as a means of getting closer to Allah.

    That middle ground can be attained by being as Islamically practicing as possible where and when it’s easiest and most convenient. If that means shedding the niqab to go to work, and wearing it elsewhere, being what I call a part-time niqabi, then so be it. It’s going to be really hard to convince me that part-time wearing of the niqab is anything more than pursuing the middle ground.

    For the record, yes, I did say that niqabis find it difficult to find work; the more we shed it, the less likely that it will ever be accepted in the workplace, and while we do get harassed, it is no more of a harassment than any other minority has faced in or by the West. Harassment is something we have to find the inner fortitude to stand up to, not appease. Do we get too much attention? I’m not so sure; we get attention when it’s convenient for the media to pay attention to us. Beyond those few moments, hardly. And I know I definitely did not say that niqabis convey a message of not wanting to participate in society; that might be how others view us, but that is not something that either all or most muntaqibaat are putting out. Countless are the times when I’ve been approached for the time, for directions, and for more information on Islam, while in full niqaab. It is a rare person in any Western city who wants to approach or be approached by random strangers for any reason, regardless of the way they are dressed, and I’m not so certain that the Prophet sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam would want us to be any more approachable than most of us are.

    And of course, I don’t think that any Islamic principle has boundaries in this world. As soon as we say, “Right, niqab stops being mandatory at the Strait of Gibraltar, and hijab stops at the steps of Capitol Hill, and ‘Muslim names’ are unacceptable beyond the boundaries of the Swat Valley, and as for zabiha, well, bismillah at the table is good enough in every country whether Muslim dominated or not,” as soon as we say any of that, we’ve restricted our faith more than any non-Muslim could have dreamed…for we’ve restricted it in our minds. And our minds should be the last place we give up any tenet of our faith.

    Much love and respect 🙂

    mems, You’re very kind to say so…I’m happy if you’ve found anything worthwhile in anything I’ve written. JazakiAllah khair, sweet sis 🙂 And I’m certain that if you ever do take up blogging (or writing in any form), you’d be twice as eloquent as you believe me to be–yes, that’s me nudging you to blog 🙂

  5. Ayan says:

    mashAllah sis, what a well written post/response! 🙂

    Though I do not wear niqab (nor see it as obligatory upon me), I would never question your choice or anyones choice to wear or not wear the niqab or hijab (for that matter). Simply, these choices are made personally, with God in mind.

    btw there’s over +80 responses to the initial post! Always the hijab/niqabi/jilbab issues that brings people out of the woodwork lol :p

    • Thank you, sweetheart 🙂 Yes, these are personal choices; while we may choose to explain our choices to mere mortals, at the end of the day our explanation will really be for Allah.

      Well, as much as we like to say that hijab/niqab/clothing issue is boring and we don’t want to hear another word, the stats on the blogs surely show a different story 😛 Another great woodwork-drawer is marriage 😆

  6. coolred38 says:

    While I will never ask a niqabi to remove her niqab for any reason…I cant imagine for the life of me why she would choose to wear it if she doesnt have to….and having said that…I cant for the life of me understand how we are meant to believe God would make the life difficult for women in even suggesting covering their faces when out and about in society. What purpose does it serve truly? Whether in the middle east wheres its relatively accepted or in the west where its deemed different and alienating…what purpose does it serve?

    Men are demanded, ordered and threatened to lower their gaze…as are women…simple. If they do not then the sin is theirs but it in no way becomes our fault or responsibility to prevent that gaze from being lifted on to our bodies…as long as we are observing modest behavoir and modest attire…then we are fullfilling the requirements of Islam.

    Having said that…a women can wear more then required for sure…but for every action there is a reaction. As long as she can handle the reaction then no problem…eventually people might just learn to live and let live…until then we chin up and bear other peoples animosities and ignorances.

    • Thanks, and if anyone did ask me to remove my niqab, my response would be, “In my own time, and for my own reasons!”

      Given that this is very blatantly a niqabi’s blog, of course I’m happy to explain why I choose to wear it. The purpose it serves is as a way for me to fulfill a commandment of Allah; since that’s a pretty obvious response, I will add that each person’s journey to fulfill different Islamic requirements is unique…hence, the post I link you to entitled “Me and my Niqab.”, and I’ve described the societal reactions, as I experience them, many times, but here is an earlier post that might be of interest. You can browse the niqab category for more. Everybody’s journey is different, and my whys-and-wherefores might not be a satisfactory explanation for everybody. For that, I can only apologize and say, “That’s life. It’s complicated that way.” The second post I give the link to might show you that it really is not such a difficulty for me personally. That’s not to say that I am blind to people’s reactions, or that I don’t care how they respond. It just goes to show that there is more positivity than one would imagine. Or maybe I’ve just been exceedingly fortunate.

      I’ll leave a fiqh discussion of fardh vs. wajib vs. nafl to the scholars, as I am not one of them. It is very simply a sunnah followed from the lives of Ummahaat ul Mu’mineen. Covering up, to any extent, has nothing to do with feeling guilt over how men might or might not look at us.; yes, their sin would be their own. If some are covering up out of some misplaced guilt, then more education is clearly required for those individuals, as well as working towards psychologically empowering women; this would not by any stretch be a limitation among Muslims, as women who needlessly feel guilt for events beyond their control are found across all religious, racial, ethnic, and clothing boundaries.

      And niqabis have been chinning up and bearing it for a very long time; among the circle of niqabis I know personally, there is very little, if any, complaining about the outside world’s reactions. Of course, we will continue to chin up and bear it; it’s just tragically unfortunate, not to mention a wee bit baffling, when we have to explain ourselves to fellow Muslims. But, it’s nothing we can’t deal with! 🙂

      And, finally, welcome to this here blog 🙂

  7. NaksibendiMuslimah says:

    Bismillahir Rahmaanir Rahiim

    Asalaamu alaikum.

    DN, shukran, may Allah reward you for this. i can’t even get thru all the comments, but i must say to Organica that as much as i respect her she is WAY OFF base in everything she has said. All of the things that she says make niqab problemmatic are issues that i have had JUST AS MUCH when wearing pretty colored hijab scarves. i have NOT found that i received more or worse response in niqab than in hijab. Yes, i’ve had a lot of negative response, but i’m saying no more so in niqab than in hijab. And yes, the sort of people who are freaked out by it are the sort of people who are not open to your daw’ah no matter what you do. It is terribly disappointing to me that fellow Muslims are so disrespectful towards sisters who want to wear niqab. Saying you support their right to wear it while simultaneously tearing them down for wearing it and making stereotypical and ignorant comments about us is disingenuous at best and honestly feels just plain hateful. i expect that kind of ignorance from non-muslims, but expect better from fellow muslims.

    • Wa’Alaykum Salaam 🙂 You’re welcome, although there is no need to thank me. I understand the wounds that are reopened with this kind of a discussion. I can’t say it’s a discussion we either need, should expect, or welcome, but when it comes our way, of course, we have to confront it. I learned a lot from and about my fellow Muslim brothers and sisters from this discussion, and for that I am immensely grateful. I won’t lie and say it didn’t hurt; it did. I won’t lie and say it didn’t anger me to read some of the things that were later said in that comment box; it did. But I learned that Muslims online are no different from Muslims offline–the only difference being that it’s much easier to speak up for the values I love online, whereas offline, I’d be more inclined to shut up and take it. For a dialogue to take place, all points of views must come out into the open, and there is no better place for it than online.

      Expect nothing and you shall not be disappointed. But suffer disappointment and you have a chance of discovering yourself. And as MLK, Jr once said, “We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope.”

  8. coolred38 says:

    I wouldnt imagine that niqabis would actually complain perse’ about any sort of harrasment etc they receive due to wearing niqab…after all…the one response they might get is the one they dont want to hear obviously (if you dont want to be harassed in the west dont wear it)….but then again…people who deem it necessary to harrass someone over their clothing obviously are the sort of people that need very little encouragment in the first place.

    • Actually, we’re more likely to get, “If you want to dress that way, why don’t you just go back to where you came from.” And, we get that regardless of whether we are in the complaining mood. Additionally, I was speaking about niqabis complaining amongst ourselves, which is just something we don’t do readily, because a) it’s pointless; b) it’s cliched; and c) we are usually too amused by the ignorance we are confronted with to need to complain. Or maybe my circle of munaqabaat just has an amazing sense of humor 😉 As for complaining to others, whether Muslim or non, yes, we will get a lot of the kind of response you predicted, which is incredibly disappointing and disillusioning when you’re around people you thought where a) open-minded, and b) your friends. It’s not the response that we cannot handle; it’s the rigidness of the mindset behind the response that is sometimes way too much.

  9. Yusuf Smith says:

    As-Salaamu ‘alaikum,

    The ones who are freaked out at the sight of a munaqqabah are not usually the ones who are all that open to da’wah.

    Actually, the Arabic word for a woman who wears niqab is muntaqiba. Munaqqaba means one who has had holes punched in her face.

    • Abu Yusuf says:

      Salams,

      It’s very important to remember that we worship Allah, not fiqh rulings. Fiqh rulings are definitely susceptible to change due to changing times and/or places, as mentioned by our scholars and stated in the classic manual of Ottoman Hanafi Law, the Majalla.

      It could very well be that a particular ruling in one time/place is obligatory, yet in another – due to the potential harmful consequences on the individual or the community as a whole – could actually be disliked.

      If it is established by multiple cases that in our time, women that wear niqab in the West expose themselves or the community at-large to harm, then our scholars would have to take those cases into consideration when issuing a ruling on niqab. If they conclude that women should not wear niqab, for example, then if the women who wear niqab are servants to Allah Alone – instead of certain fiqh rulings of a particular time/place – they would respond accordingly with as much vigor as they would to wearing it.

      I’m not arguing that this is the case; I’m only offering a very plausible scenario as food for thought for those that are adamant to wear niqab at any cost. The position of the Hanafi school, for example, was that the niqab was not mandatory as the face is not from a woman’s awra. However, when times changed [case in point], the Hanafi scholars changed their view to it being mandatory, to avoid fitna [tests/tribulation]. My only contention is that it is just as possible for the ruling to change again, based on a different type of fitna associated with wearing niqab in the West [a very new time/place], such that niqab could be deemed disliked. At that point, would our sisters that now wear it be willing to take it off, as an act of obedience to Allah, based on a greater good for them and the community, as determined by reliable scholarship? Do we worship Allah, or certain rulings?

      • Wa’Alaykum Salaam, Abu Yusuf. That was a very interesting and incredibly useful comment on the fiqh aspect of wearing the niqab in the West. As for your final question, this my answer: We worship Allah, so how would we determine when a ruling is a sahih one, and when it is a ruling for convenience or some other ulterior motive? The reputation of the scholar would be something to consider, based on his past rulings. If there was some amount of consensus from a wide range of reliable scholars, then certainly it would be a lot easier to remove the niqab, for those who are doing it for the pleasure of Allah alone.

        However, it’s hard to tell what you are advocating for exactly: the obedience to fiqh ruling, or obedience to Allah? I myself prefer following fiqh ruling for the sake of Allah, and rarely do I make the distinction between the two. On the one hand, it appears that we are being asked to obey fiqh rulings that tell us to discard the niqab for the greater good of the community and potential harm to ourselves, and that is correct worship of Allah. On the other hand, we are being told that we are to discard other fiqh rulings, for they actually represent worship to the ruling, and not worship of Allah, as they were for a different time and place. Who knows best which ruling is in compliance with the commands of Allah? Could it not be the case that we are following fiqh rulings for the worship of Allah, already? Would there be only one way to worship Allah, on this issue?

        The assumption seems to be (not just by you, if at all by you) that we are doing it out of worship to some “out-dated” scholars, and that we’re confused in our heads and hearts about worshiping Allah. Allow me to assure the world: taking a scholar’s input does not automatically mean worship of the scholar. Questioning the intention of anyone’s action is a slippery slope that everyone can participate in: I can just as easily question the intent of a flowery-hijabed girl, and ask, “It seems like she just wants to look hip and cool, and she worships fashion. Can she really be doing it to worship Allah?” Sure, those girls may be following some scholar or another, and if that’s the case, then I could even say, “They are worshiping that scholar and his ruling on being attractive/friendly/whatever much more than they seem to be worshiping Allah.” This would be a problematic argument, obviously, for both sides to make, and there is a reason intention resides in the heart: it is a factor between Allah and His creation. The only person’s intentions we can question are our own.

    • Yusuf Smith, Wa’Alaykum Salaam 🙂 Oh, no…that is ironic considering some people actually do think we covered women (regardless of stage of covering) are abused! I’m going to go scold my (Arab!) friend who calls me, “Ya munaqabah!” Maybe I’ll just stick to the colloquial “niqabi.”

      Thanks for the heads-up…I’m going to edit to the correct word right now. JazakAllah khair 🙂

  10. Amy says:

    As-salaamu alaykum

    This post seems to articulate the usefulness and benefit of the niqab, even in the West. I applaud my sisters who wear it, because they are in my opinion doing even more da’wah than others, and sometimes even at tremendous personal sacrifice. Hijab is becoming more commonplace, especially as our sisters who wear hijab often might find themselves seduced into improper coverings (tight clothes, e.g.) But niqab makes a statement, and even if someone’s first question is “Why do you wear that?” the answer (“Because I believe in one God who created all of mankind, whom I worship”) can lead in to teaching about Islam.

    I find the argument that we as Muslims should be integrating into society to weaken in the face of Islamic obligations to give da’wah.

    And never should we abandon a practice of Islam just because it’s “not obligatory.”

  11. Hey Salaams!

    I must say, it’s an awesome awesome post! I seem to have lost patience with long dwindling posts on most blogs, but not here – your arguments are always so coherent.

    I find it a great shame that we as muslims do not practice sensibility in terms of our appearance. I would take it back a couple of steps to just plain dressing decent – why have we lost our morals so easily? I also hat the fact that one muslim will not respect another muslim’s right to dress or appear in an Islamic manner. I think before looking at wider society (they defo need educating), we need to look at ourself and clean up our way of thinking.

    On a positive note though, a couple of months ago, mom and I were at a mall, and a random and definitely non-muslim woman stopped a lady in hijab and was telling her how she admired the way she was dressed. Kinda goes to show that there still is hope 🙂

  12. Amy, WaAlaykum Salam 🙂 Welcome and thank you. You’re very right, it really does provide a very good lead-in to more da’wah.

    Cookie Monster, WaAlaykum Salam 🙂 Well, you do have a truck-load of emails and what-not to read, so I wouldn’t blame you for not being able to get through this. Thank you for your kind sentiments.

    And yes, there is definitely still hope; we’ve been told so many times, by non-Muslims, that we should never give up our “traditions and garb, and that you make America a richer place.” Such sentiments, I’ll be honest, really bolster one’s strength in the face of the walls of negativity that sometimes confront us.

  13. elle says:

    hi, im writing my dissertation on the veil in society – including west and eastern dresscodes, the more iv researched the more and more complex this seems to get,and stumbling across this site i feel more confused than ever,
    id really appreciate your opinions on where you think the veil(in whichever word this term fits to the niqabi/burqa) fits in todays society and whether it opposes or elevates a persons identity?
    and any other information you feel could help me come to a clearer identity of women and the veil.
    really good writing and eloquent arguements by the way
    cheers

  14. UmmKhalid says:

    Assalamu alaykum

    I would like to reply with a few aya and hadith…

    BE FIRM IN YOUR OBEDIENCE TO ALLAH EVEN IF IT DISPLEASES PEOPLE:

    “O you who believe! Guard your own souls: if you follow (right) guidance no hurt can come to you from those who stray (al-Ma’idah 105)

    “Allah is the Wali (Protector, Guardian, Supporter) of those who believe He brings them out from darkness into light.” (al-Baqarah 257)

    “Never will the Jews and the Christians be pleased with you unless you follow their religion” (Surah Al-Baqara 20)

    DO NOT OBEY ANYONE IN DISOBEDIENCE TO ALLAH (EVEN IF HE IS A ‘SCHOLAR’)

    “And if you obey most of those on the earth, they will mislead you far away from Allâh’s Path. They follow nothing but conjectures, and they do nothing but lie.” (Surah Al-An’am 116)

    Also the prophet(peace be upon him) said : “there is no obedience to the creation (if it’s) disobedience to the creator” (Sahih Bukhari and Sahih Muslim)

    DO NOT MAKE HARAM WHAT IS HALAL

    Rasullah(salaAllahu alayhi wassalam) recited this verse:

    “They took their rabbis/priests and monks, as lords besides Allah.” [Qur’an, 9:31]
    `Adiyy ibn Hatim, a Christian who then accepted Islam, heard this verse being recited, and remonstrated, ‘They did not worship them!’ The Messenger of Allah D replied, ‘Indeed. Surely, they (i.e. the religious leaders) prohibited the permissible for them (i.e. the people), and legitimized the prohibited for them, and [the people] followed them, and so that was their worship of them.” [Ahmad, Tirmidhi. After this the Prophet (may Allah bless him and his Household and grant them peace) invited `Adiyy to embrace Islam, and he accepted.]

    SUPPORT YOUR BELIEVING BROTHERS AND SISTERS IN OBEYING ALLAH

    “Let not the believers take the disbelievers as awliyaa (friends, supporters, helpers) instead of the believers.” (Surah Ale-Imran 28)

    OBEDIENCE TO ALLAH IS NEVER BAD FOR DAWAH

    “Therefore proclaim openly that which you are commanded, and turn away from those who join false gods with Allah.” (Al-Hijr 94)

    “Verily, Allah helps one who helps His (Cause). (Al-Hajj:40)

    A HADITH ABOUT NIQAB FROM BUKHARI-how can anyone niqab should not be worn?

    Narrated Safiya bint Shaiba: ‘Aisha used to say: “When (the Verse): “They should draw their veils over their necks and bosoms,” was revealed, (the ladies) cut their waist sheets at the edges and covered their faces with the cut pieces.” (Book #60, Hadith #282)

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