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Feminism in Islam

Printed From: IslamiCity.com
Category: Culture & Community
Forum Name: Groups – Women (Sisters)
Forum Discription: Groups – Women (Sisters)
URL: http://www.IslamiCity.com/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=207
Printed Date: 27 August 2014 at 10:08pm


Topic: Feminism in Islam
Posted By: Israfil
Subject: Feminism in Islam
Date Posted: 22 March 2005 at 6:54pm
I should say that for Muslim women who claim be "Feminist"
Muslims, the application of a "feminist" and "Muslim" are two
paradoxical terms which in themselves have the same
meaning. The primary understanding of feminism is the belief
in equality among both men and women and to apply the
necessary steps to promote such an ideology. But in fact when
one looks at the definition of what it is to be a Muslim we cannot
but infer the contexual implimnentation of Qur'an. God in the
Qur'an states that men and women are equal in his eyes
because both of course belonging to the animal kingdom (one
species) and as well as being composed of the same physical
elements in which makes them a being. The differences God
mentions are pure biological which has no inference in the
qualities of both.

Of course for women who argue the inequality of Muslim
women in the Muslim community is the western secularist
argument to evaluating the Muslim community. but if we
ourselves are to evaluate the community on a microcosmic
(small) level such as men and women separated in the Mosque
we can only suppose that such known inequalities would be
due to cultural influence and not the Islamic. The problem with
western feminism is that western feminist are evaluating the
roles of men and women based on the western idea of equality.

Western Feminist must understand that Islam is not just a
religion but a culture an d perhaps the symbolism of the
division in the Mosque is not pure status but mutual respect
between men and women. I'm quite surprised to hear the
language of feminist when they say:

"How is it that men have a space in which it centers the Imam
which in itself shows male dominance of women?"

The answer to such a shallow question from me is that how
men are seperated in the mosque depends on how the Imam
runs the mosque. For instance in some mosques men are on
the lower level and women are on the top. In some countries
women are not allowed in the mosque which is forbidden
saved if women are on their monthly cycle (even this is debated
by feminist).

But when such seperation is evaluated based on such
inferences western feminist must look at how the internal
structure (such as how the Khutba is conducted) and if the
women in the mosque are inconveinenced. But in no way does
a women being seperated by a man shows the inferiority of
women in fact I myself can say why can't a man go in the
woman's corner? In the Mosque men are not allowed where
the women pray? A woman from the group has every right to
tell the men that he cannot pray with/or near them. If we wish to
talk about the varieties of power in the Muslim community it is
indeed equitable for both men and women to show power in he
mosque.

But for Muslim women to call themselves "feminist Muslims" are
indeed contradictory terms base don what I have mentioned
earlier in my commnetary. Also we must becareful as Muslims
to interpret the Qur'an based on our own ideologies because
while interpreting the Qur'an any words or parables that the
Qur'an shows we cannot imply anything based on our own
emotion. to do show would result in Bid'ah. if we differ then
Allahu Alim we must consult with a learned thinker i.e Scholar,
Alim, or your respectable Sheikh.



Replies:
Posted By: Angel
Date Posted: 29 March 2005 at 11:26pm
I'm all for womens stuff and issuesand standing up but I'm not about to knock men off the equation  

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~ Our feet are earthbound, but our hearts and our minds have wings ~


Posted By: ummziba
Date Posted: 30 March 2005 at 4:20am

You are right, Angel, men and women are two sides of the same equation, we cannot do without each other.  And Israfil, for sure "feminist Muslim" is an oxymoron.  However, that doesn't mean there aren't many issues in the ummah that need to be addressed as far as inequality goes.  Muslims need to realize that just because an atrocity is commited and blamed on culture doesn't mean we should shrug our shoulders and say "that is not Islam".

We need to address inequality head on and help stop practices such as so called "honour killings", women forced to marry someone they don't want to, dowry being paid to the bride's family or the groom's family instead of the bride, woman banned from some mosques, and so on and so forth.

It isn't good enough to just declare that these things are not Islamic, we must speak out and put an end to any "cultural" practices that are clearly wrong. Men and women are equally responsible before Allah for their actions or lack of them.

Peace, ummziba.



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Sticks and stones may break my bones, but your words...they break my soul ~


Posted By: Alwardah
Date Posted: 30 March 2005 at 4:30am

As Salamu Alaikum  

 

Masha Allah an eye-opener. I totally agree with you it is about time we women realized the true meaning of Feminism in Islam.

 

We have so much going for us, so why do we wish to become slaves as the feminist in the west are.

 

I think we are very ignorant of our position in society according to Islam. It is time to take a very close look at the true role of Woman in Islam.

 

Jazakallahu Khairan  for bringing up this topic.

 



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“Verily your Lord is quick in punishment; yet He is indeed Oft-Forgiving Most Merciful (Surah Al-An’am 6:165)
"Indeed, we belong to Allah and to Him is our return" (Surah Baqarah 2: 155)


Posted By: Rehmat
Date Posted: 30 March 2005 at 8:04am

Islam gave women some rights (marriage and divorce by consent, inheritance, education political and legal rights) 1400 years ago, which were unknown to their Christian and Jewish sisters until 19th century. of course Islam’s scheme for life is from ‘that world’. it is an alternative that confronts the so-called modern world, its values, agnosticism, and ‘anything goes’ mentality, with a genuine counter-project that only appears to be outdated because it is timeless.

 

The western civilization is already witnessing the casting of doubts on fashionable facets of the sexual and feminist revolution. AIDS alone has forced people to rethink their manners in more than one respect. the first manageress in USA begin to express regret at their now irrevocable decision not to have children for the sake of their careers – at having placed too much emphasis on ‘sisterhood’ at the expense of ‘motherhood’. more women than before are now convinced that pure imitation of man is not the best way of liberating women. in the us, as in Europe, it is once again fashionable among formerly ‘swinging’ students to ‘go steady’. in 1968, Vance Packard in his book ‘Sexual Wilderness’ coined the term ‘sex jungle’ for the excesses of the sexual revolution in his country – the USA.

 

For Islam, man and woman have the same dignity, but different tasks; they are of the same values, but have different abilities; they are equal before Allah, but have different roles in life. the question of whether or not this is ‘modern’ is irrelevant.

 



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Know your enemy!
No time to waste. Act now!
Tomorrow it will be too late
What You Don’t Know Can Kill You



Posted By: blond
Date Posted: 31 March 2005 at 5:08am

I have heard that a nation can rise no higher than its woman. Where the woman is uplifted, the fruit of her womb will manifest her happiness and the community will rise. Where the woman is oppressed, the fruit of her womb bears her unhappiness and the community will fall.

It is the law of cause and effect.



Posted By: ummziba
Date Posted: 31 March 2005 at 5:19am

That makes a lot of sense, Blond.  It is logical that happy women will raise happy, productive children, whereas unhappy or oppressed women would raise unhappy, dissatisfied children.

Peace, ummziba.



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Sticks and stones may break my bones, but your words...they break my soul ~


Posted By: Tasmiya
Date Posted: 31 March 2005 at 6:04pm
Originally posted by Rehmat

IFor Islam, man and woman have the same dignity, but different tasks; they are of the same values, but have different abilities; they are equal before Allah, but have different roles in life. the question of whether or not this is ‘modern’ is irrelevant.

 

 

Asalaamu alaikum,

 

I think this is all well and good in theory but the reality is that in many places, Muslim women are NOT getting their rights. There are honour killings, forced marriages, genital mutilation in the extreme then there are smaller injustices such as not being allowed to enter masjids.

 

How many of us (male and female) know that a Muslim man has the right of marrying  up to 4 wives but how many of us know that a woman has the right to be satisfied sexually by her husband?

 

I'm not saying it's all a conspiracy by men against women but it seems that it's always common knowledge about husband's and men's rights - how many of us have read the "duties of a wife" type articles   but the "duties of a Muslim man" articles are sorely lacking.

 

Heh..maybe I should just go and write one myself

 

-Tasmiya



Posted By: kim!
Date Posted: 31 March 2005 at 10:16pm

Blond, you are right. If 50% of a population is oppressed, that society cannot move forwards.

Mind you, if a society always looks outwards to blame others (eg: foreignors)for their problems, and never inwards, then that is a huge problem which will hinder a society's progress too, but that's a topic for a different thread, I think.  :}

Kim...

 

 

 



Posted By: fezziwig
Date Posted: 31 March 2005 at 11:04pm
A few years ago we figured out that "separate but equal" doesn't work. Separate is never equal. Took about 500 years, so we should cherish the result.

Men: surrender! Women run everything anyway (though sometimes their influence is subtle). Let it be and enjoy yourself. All that men do is make a lot of noise and then a bloody mess. Tone it down.

F



Posted By: blond
Date Posted: 01 April 2005 at 4:47am
I have never known a woman who would not surrender to, and support, a man who carries the Light of Allah within. It is when fallen man fails in his duty to be what Allah has created him to be, that she becomes dissatisfied.


Posted By: SimplyMuslim
Date Posted: 10 April 2005 at 7:35am

Assalamu Alaikum Brothers and Sisters (Or as the extreme feminists of today would surely correct me...Sisters and Brothers!)

Feminism...a hugely interesting topic for women and men alike. For women since it aims to give us rights which we are entitled to, and for men since the direction it seems to be taking is eerily about making the role of men extinct!!

It is in no doubt about Islam’s stance on women and the high regard that we are kept in. Alhamdulilah

But whether those rights are fulfilled is a different matter as mentioned before.

It’s sad to see the extreme stance adopted by some women today, whom, no longer satisfied with what they perceive to be 'progress', are adamant on exceeding the role of men.

And unfortunately...men are at it too  it was only recently that I heard a report on a new drug aiming at allowing men to breast feed!

Why is it so hard to accept that as men and women, although equal in respect of human rights and all aspects of faith, are two different entities with abilities that differ? It is not a weakness to admit that women have a certain ability to bond with children and that men are on average (although even that today is being put to the test) physically stronger.

Although more important than the extreme feministic views, is the view in allowing many Muslim women world-wide to enjoy the rights many of us writing in this forum have. To think that many countries claiming to practice Islam are in fact oppressing women on an unspeakable level is heart wrenching, not only because women are worthy of respect and an elevated position in society but because women are also Allah's (swt) creation, and as prescribed in the Quran and Sunnah, are entitled to the best treatment.

Women, the mothers of children, the daughters, wives, and sisters...all in their own right deserve to be treated as prescribed in our religion. And although the task may seem too large, the task that is of improving the state of treatment of Muslim women by Muslim men world wide, it is possible to work towards that by those of you reading this. Any men who are married, treat your wives according to Islam and remember their worth. Men who aren’t married, treat your mothers and sisters with respect always, and also remember their worth. It may be imparting a kind word or two, or listening to her opinion...always remember that women in Islam are to be treated well no matter what their position is in your life.

I hope no-one takes this as an attack on men, as Allah (swt) is my witness it isn't. It’s a thread about feminism and the above is my two cents...or three

I may have come across wrong in some points, for that I apologize.

Salaam

 



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'To completely trust in God is to be like a child who knows deeply that even if he does not call for his mother, his mother is totally aware of his condition and is looking after him.'


Posted By: jalillah
Date Posted: 10 April 2005 at 11:45pm
first of all woman has to give itself respect...and vice versa but it never works that way....but remember this.. to all woman out their dont feel discourage!! feeling not being in the same degree or level as men but let me subside your feelings about men given certain dedgree to over woman but they will be the one first that will be called for account in the after life while we be accounted for ours.ie..duties to Allah's command and same for men but whatever we do or choose from here on! are all accountable by measure.....so dont feel discarded over men because their's is a heavier panalty awaiting much greater and by measure.  and at the same time dont forget who we are and our resposibility not only to each other but to th whole of mankind last but not least Allah... 

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May Allah Bless those who seek the truth......Allah Stands Alone in truth..


Posted By: jalillah
Date Posted: 11 April 2005 at 12:19am
ladies do any one of you having recall anything in your life about a feeling of love @ first sight well how many of you felt the experience afterwards? then soon lost it, then trying to gain it back??? well basically all of us in the matter of fact right now...someone out there is facing that. well!! we dont know why is that....! but as Allah reveals that 99.9% is veil from us the same greatness you had felt mailto:inlove@first - inlove@first sight ...that will be unveiled in the after life!! its because only those!! worthy of receiving of such pleasure will be granted of it.. the extreme pleasure only belongs to the pios of man....and when a men is bad to woman in this life his punishment in this life is what you pointed out blondi I call that a condemn child,mother and future generation and for that in the after life is accountable by measure..   

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May Allah Bless those who seek the truth......Allah Stands Alone in truth..


Posted By: kim!
Date Posted: 13 April 2005 at 9:54pm

Ew! Men breastfeeding?! I mean, I know it's possible, but I once heard it was a sure way for men to get breast cancer.

Feminism means different things to different people. Standing up for your rights - even if it's the right to stay home and take care of the family _instead_ of spending your life in an office - is feminism. Standing up against violence is feminism. Demanding the rights given you by your religion is feminism. Having a voice in society is feminism. Etc.

Kim...

Women's rights are Human rights.

 



Posted By: semar
Date Posted: 13 April 2005 at 11:01pm

Agree Kim, however many times the feminism activist they are not balance, the very obvious example when France muslim women were banned to wear hijab, they do nothing. Where are they? This is also women's right.



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Salam/Peace,
Semar
The Prophet said: "Do not eat before you are hungry, and stop eating before you are full"
"1/3 of your stomach for food 1/3 for water, 1/3 for air"


Posted By: kim!
Date Posted: 14 April 2005 at 12:59am

"Agree Kim, however many times the feminism activist they are not balance, the very obvious example when France muslim women were banned to wear hijab, they do nothing. Where are they? This is also women's right."

Are you _sure_ they said nothing? Accorind to the news we get over here, Muslim women and girls protested a LOT and very loudly!

I can understand both sides of the arguement - on one hand everyone should be free to wear what they want, but on the other hand it sounds like French schools have been having a lot of trouble to deal with in recent years with students protesting about people wearing more modern clothes.

But I think the french have taken it too far and should have dealt with the problem in a different way somehow.

Kim...



Posted By: semar
Date Posted: 14 April 2005 at 9:50am
Originally posted by kim!

Are you _sure_ they said nothing? Accorind to the news we get over here, Muslim women and girls protested a LOT and very loudly!

Yes you are right, many muslim girls and muslim women protesting this. They were just pious muslim women and muslim girls that love to wear hijab, they never go to streets but just this time. But there was not even one of regular feminist organization went to the street. There was not even one of non muslim feminist organization went to the street. What I mean by "regular feminist" is feminist that protesting for gender equality and women treatment in Sudan, Afghanistan , in Saudi Arabia, other muslim country. So we can see they are bias, probably they have "hidden agenda".



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Salam/Peace,
Semar
The Prophet said: "Do not eat before you are hungry, and stop eating before you are full"
"1/3 of your stomach for food 1/3 for water, 1/3 for air"


Posted By: Sanjiv
Date Posted: 15 April 2005 at 7:59am

I was watching this interesting documentry called Muslims on this is going a fair way back I think its 2002. Their was a mention the hijab was not a representation of Islam nor are women forced to wear it. Another interesting fact mentioned was the sharia law cannot be forced on someone it's up to the invidual to take up these doctrines themselves and put it to use.

As I am not well grounded I will not speculate but your responces will be greatly appreciated.

 



Posted By: SimplyMuslim
Date Posted: 15 April 2005 at 9:01am

Assalamu Alaikum sanjiv

Great topic

This is my two cents:

Although wearing the 'hijab' is expressed in the Quran and mandatory in Islam, it is not to be forced upon any woman.

The hijab, I speak from personal opinion, is not just the scarf that covers the head. It is an entire dress code and pattern of behaviour. Having said that, some women wear the hijab yet do not faithfully adhere to Islam, as there are also some women that do not wear the hijab yet practice their religion precisely in other aspects.

About 'being forced' to wear the hijab, it defeats the objective entirely! The objective being full submission to Islam, especially from the heart. In order to embrace the hijab, you must want to do so from the heart, out of a love of Islam and respect for the word of Allah (swt). The benefits of wearing the hijab are numerous, both in this life and the next.

Yet it is futile to impose it upon a woman who does not understand its significance and does not practice Islam as one should (i.e prayers, fasting etc). It is also pointless to wear the hijab and then dance around at a mixed party for example, it is a contradiction. As is wearing a head scarf yet coupling it with very tight, skimpy clothes that allow other parts of the body to show. The hijab requires a committment to Islam and its practice and should not be used aimlessly to satisfy non religious whims.

I can not stress enough that a woman must want to wear the hijab of her own free will. Being forced into anything will either breed resentment or hypocrisy, wearing the hijab is no exception to that rule. It must not be forced upon any woman. Rather, women should be taught about what is said in the Quran about it and told about the benefits.

It is a great feeling to step outside wearing the hijab and acting according to it since it in itself commands a certain way of behaving. Not only did Allah (swt) command us women to wear it, but it identifies us as muslim women and informs others of their restrictions when dealing with us, especially those that are aware, particularly muslim brothers (although not always the case, unfortunately). I also find that non-muslims treat women that adopt the hijab with more respect and courtesy...many of the staff working at my university refrain from swearing infront of me!  for that I am thankful

Personally, I find the hijab and all that it entails is empowering, I know that all that I have achieved in my life is due to my intellect and personality and not the size of my bust or the curve of my hips (or the lack of either as the case may be  ) It makes me aware constantly of my faith and Allah (swt) and prevents me from putting myself in compromising positions. I really love my hijab, and I mean that with all the honesty I posses, walahi it is the truth. In fact, I would feel completely naked without it!

I hope that all made some sort of sense!

It will be interesting to hear everyones opinion on the topic

Salam



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'To completely trust in God is to be like a child who knows deeply that even if he does not call for his mother, his mother is totally aware of his condition and is looking after him.'


Posted By: semar
Date Posted: 15 April 2005 at 9:22am

Salam,

I agree with you both (sanjiv & simplymuslim), tha twe can not force women to wear hijab, but alss we can not force women to remove their hijab.

The point that I want to raise is most feminist who attact the policy regarding mandatory hijab on some muslim countries, they did nothing when the French Goverment banned hijab. If they genuinely fight for women's right, they should protest on both cases (forcing and banning hijab). That's it.

By the way the original topic actually is not about hijab but about feminism.



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Salam/Peace,
Semar
The Prophet said: "Do not eat before you are hungry, and stop eating before you are full"
"1/3 of your stomach for food 1/3 for water, 1/3 for air"


Posted By: nadeem_aus
Date Posted: 16 April 2005 at 4:19am

I agree totally with Sister 'Simply Muslim' being a man I do respect sisters who willingly wear hijab, etc a  lot more than those that don't.

I congratulate all sisters who wear hijab and follow the faith.

 



Posted By: Sanjiv
Date Posted: 16 April 2005 at 5:45am

Sorry guys I was slighty of topic as notified bt Semar.

I raised this topic in general discussions under the heading How should Islam be implented.

Click on the this link to be redirected see ya there.   http://www.islamicity.com/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=592&PN=1&TPN=1 - http://www.islamicity.com/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=592& PN=1&TPN=1  



Posted By: kalssum
Date Posted: 16 April 2005 at 6:00am
Originally posted by SimplyMuslim

Assalamu Alaikum sanjiv

Great topic

The hijab, I speak from personal opinion, is not just the scarf that covers the head. It is an entire dress code and pattern of behaviour. Having said that, some women wear the hijab yet do not faithfully adhere to Islam, as there are also some women that do not wear the hijab yet practice their religion precisely in other aspects.

 

Salam

salaam alykum

It saddens me to say that due to the behavior of  some sisters the respect of the hijab is no longar what it used to be.

yes  there are sisters that do not wear the hijab yet practice their religion precisely and i have seen them being shunned by some hijab wearing sisters.

Why do some of us still judge others by their appearance.

 



Posted By: Alwardah
Date Posted: 16 April 2005 at 12:18pm

As Salamu Alaikum

Firstly I totally agree with SimplyMuslim that no woman can be forced to wear the Hijab. This hold true not only about the Hijab but all religious duties, Salah (prayer), Zakat (Charity) etc. These practices if forced on any individual goes against the teaching and in particular this Ayat : "There in no compulsion in religion."

A woman who wears Hijab is showing her obedience to her Creator, just as she shows her obedience when she prays and fasts or pay her Zakat.

The non-Muslims have made this an issue because it does not serve their purpose. Fashion in the west is big business so they cannot just ignore this great potential market.

When we look from the ancient times through to the Middle Ages and the Renaissance and the Industrial revolution, we find that the women dressed just like the Muslim women dress today-conservative, modest and simple.

For me Hijab means modesty, bashfulness and self respect.

Salams



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“Verily your Lord is quick in punishment; yet He is indeed Oft-Forgiving Most Merciful (Surah Al-An’am 6:165)
"Indeed, we belong to Allah and to Him is our return" (Surah Baqarah 2: 155)


Posted By: kim!
Date Posted: 17 April 2005 at 4:57pm

Probably feminist groups have not stood against the hijab ban because they don't understand the issue. they probably think that girls and women are forced to wear the hijab, so they think that banning it is a good thing. I can understand that, assuming they really don't know that most women wear it voluntarily.

I have a French friend who says that Muslim boys in some schools make trouble by complaining about the clothes that the non-Muslim girls wear, So I suppose the feminists might also think that banning religious items in schools is a way of "getting back" at the groups who complain by demonstrating who has the "real power" in the community. ie: the majority non-Muslims.

Just a theory.

Kim...




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