Oppression of woman in Islam and my story:
“I am a muslim woman and Islam oppresses me.
Look I wear a veil,I am oppressed
There is a view in society that men are superior to women,I am oppressed.”
Everyone is concerned about me.Everybody is concerned about the oppression of women.People are protesting and coming to the street to give me my civil rights which Islam has deprieved me.”Ban the Burqa a Symbol of Oppression,”this placard is prominent in melbourne,sydney and in many parts of the world.I took a second to re-evaluate if I am really oppressed or is it the media brainwashing everymind to believe that Islam oppresses women.You want to help me,right.You feel I am a poor creature unable to break off free. But before seeking your help ,I want to re evaluate my oppression comparing it to the oppression in other religions.
Equality of Men and Women in different religion:
“Men are superior to women, Jesus is superior to men and God is above all. Women should worship all of them”. (Corinthians 14: 34, 35).
In Hindu social and ethical texts, women often seem to be hierarchically inferior to men. One of the most widely known of the Dharmashastras, the Manu Smirti, or Laws of Manu, depicts women as being subservient to men.In other texts, women are prohibited from hearing the Vedas, from engaging in certain crucial rituals, from holding positions of religious leadership, and so on. Some texts also hold that even women of the higher castes cannot be considered twice-born (dvijas), and must be reborn as men to make serious religious progress. Women are also depicted in some texts as being impure because they menstruate.
Quoting the verses of Quran(interpretation) Let us see :
[3:195] Their Lord responded to them: “I never fail to reward any worker among you for any work you do, be you male or female – you are equal to one another. Thus, those who immigrate, and get evicted from their homes, and are persecuted because of Me, and fight and get killed, I will surely remit their sins and admit them into gardens with flowing streams.” Such is the reward from GOD. GOD possesses the ultimate reward.
[4:124] As for those who lead a righteous life, male or female, while believing, they enter Paradise; without the slightest injustice.
[16:97] Anyone who works righteousness, male or female, while believing, we will surely grant them a happy life in this world, and we will surely pay them their full recompense (on the Day of Judgment) for their righteous works.
[33:35] The submitting men, the submitting women, the believing men, the believing women, the obedient men, the obedient women, the truthful men, the truthful women, the steadfast men, the steadfast women, the reverent men, the reverent women, the charitable men, the charitable women, the fasting men, the fasting women, the chaste men, the chaste women, and the men who commemorate GOD frequently, and the commemorating women; GOD has prepared for them forgiveness and a great recompense.
[40:40] Whoever commits a sin is requited for just that, and whoever works righteousness – male or female – while believing, these will enter Paradise wherein they receive provisions without any limits.
So,hold on .I can see clearly that Islam places woman in a better position.Then why should I believe that I am oppressed?Why?
Is it because of my veil?
Let us study Veil in different Religion:
My veil is a concern for you.Once I have been told that leave your religion at your home,this is a professional place.And I never understood what my headcover had to do with the religion.It is just a piece of cloth,that I chose to wear over my head.You feel I am forced to wear a modest cloth when the world is favouring nudity instead of modesty.Let us first take a peek on other religions and your religion too..
Describing the state of world in the latter days, which are called Kalyug [dark-age] in the Holy Bhagvada Gita Maha Rishi Vuyas, explains… Women, with uncovered faces, will walk about in the bazaars like prostitutes.
Doesn’t that clearly mean that even Hindu religion supports the veil concept?
In fact if you tour the traditional part of India you’ll see all females doing hijab in their own ways… few even pull down their head covers upto their chins so as to cover their faces as well. Now tell me isn’t the old traditional culture of India itself standing as a strong proof to their original beliefs?
In the New Testament we read:
“But every woman that prayeth or prophesieth with her head uncovered dishonoureth her head: for that is even all one as if she were shaven. For if the woman be not covered, let her also be shorn: but if it be a shame for a woman to be shorn or shaven, let her be covered.”(1 Corinthians: 11: 5-6)
Whenever a Christian imagines Mother Mary (pbuh) or wherever we see a sculpture of her, we find that she [Mother Mary (pbuh)] is always a lady in hijab (covering her hair with a cloth), however, there are certain Christian women who desire to dress up with the least possible cloth material today. Even if they wear a good measure they’ll make sure that it must be all very revealing.
In chapter 24, verse 31 Allah says addresses the believing men saying:
‘Say to the believing men that they restrain their looks… That is purer for them. Surely Allah is Well-Aware of what you do.
And continuing the point to the next verse (same chapter 24, verse 32) Allah addresses the believing women saying:
‘And say to the believing women that they restrain their eyes and guard their private parts, and they display not their beauty and embellishments except that which is apparent thereof, and that they draw their head-covers over their bosoms, and they display not their beauty or their embellishment thereof save to their husbands, or to their fathers,… And they walk not in a style that such of their beauty as they conceal is noticed. And turn you to Allah all together, O believers, that you may succeed.’
So,practically I understand,that a veil is in all major religion and what is wrong if the women chose to be covered.why is the public offended with the veil.Yes,it is in all religion.If you don’t practise your’s you should rather not point fingers to others.If you are bothered about giving me civil rights to live unoppressed,believe me every sane women will feel oppressed if they are bound to reveal their body.You stare at me because of my veil.But I am happy to be stared at for looking a bit different rather than for exposing some flesh for the sake of fashion & entertainment.
I don’t understand one thing,If men are allowed to be dressed up in full,and it is a symbol of his elegant dressing.why does he do double standard when it comes to women.
Why don’t people just let choose what to wear.Why is hijab marked as a symbol of oppression of women ?It is time that people understand that your dress is just a clothing,you have lots of other things to be concerned about than worry about someone’s choice of dresss.In my opinion the business suit worn my men is more oppressive ,isn’t it just look at this picture.
My Hijab is a mark of distinction and I wear it proudly.
And I don’t understand what is wrong if my husband is my protector and maintainer.If Allah has given him superiority over me to work hard and earn wealth to keep me happy,what’s wrong?I bet no man would want to work if all their wishes were fulfilled automatically so why should I fight?Why should I feel oppressed.I have a double advantage.I don’t need to work and I get everything I want.I don’t have to work like a donkey amidst unknown men and bossy boses and insulting remarks.I am free to choose if I work or not,I am not compelled to work.And even if I work ,I am not required to share my money with anybody,This is the beauty of Islam.
Morever Prophet Muhammad’s (p.b.u.h) wife khadijah(p.b.u.h)was an independent business women that too in the age of jahijilah,when no woman were allowed such freedom in other religion.Then why do I blame Islam for everything.It is only a view of society influenced by other cultures that some people do not let their womenfolk work..
I am a muslimah.And I am proud to be one so stop feeling that I am oppressed.I love my dignity,I love my veil and I am uplifted by Islam.