Women in Islam
The Prophet said that women totally dominate men of intellect and Possessors of Hearts, but ignorant men dominate women, for they are shackled by the ferocity of animals.
They have no kindness, gentleness, or love, since animalism dominates their nature.
Love and kindness are human attributes; anger and sensuality belong to the animals.
Imam Musa Ibn Ja'far (p.b.u.h.) narrated from his fathers, from the holy prophet (p.b.u.h.&h.h.), who said: "However much the faith of a man increases, his regard for women increases."
Many of the Muslim countries which claim to practice Islam are treating women as inferiors and subjugating them, and unfortunately, many women accept this situation, thinking that it's what Islam advocates. However, most of this degradation, humiliation, and poor treatment towards women in these "Islamic" countries come not from the Quran, but from the desertion of the Quran.
Take Afghanistan, for example one of the least powerful countries. The Taliban are oppressing the people as well as the religion. They treat women as such inferiors, to the point that they aren't even allowed to leave their houses, nor receive any education whatsoever, unless it's in her house, taught by a woman. Not to mention that instead of creating unity in the Muslim ummah (nation), they kill their fellow Muslims and claim that it's the right "Islamic way".
What kind of mentality is this, the mentality of the ancient Arabs who used to bury their children as infants if they were girls because they were ashamed of them?? Or...The mentality of the Europeans centuries ago who thought of women as such subordinates that they weren't even human?? That they had no souls and were basically nothing...like animals?? In Islam, women have rights.
Rights that some that
women here in America didn't have until not long ago. Although in the Middle Eastern countries, the governments distort or even disregard these laws, according to true Islamic law, a woman has always had the right to earn an education, to obtain inheritance, to earn money and keep it to herself, to own property, and to contract.
In Islam, marriage does not affect a woman's legal status, her property, her earnings, or even her name! And she is entitled to compensation just as a man is. Look at America. Women here couldn't even vote until about 1920. In England, just over a hundred years ago in 1850, women finally earned the right to own property.
In 1857, they were given the right to divorce. We've been able to do all this for 1400 years! And we're the old-fashioned, oppressed ones?
The Prophet (p.b.u.h.&h.h.) has been narrated to have said, "Fatima is a part of me. Whoever upsets her has surely upset me, and whoever upsets me has upset Allah." I can go on all day and bore you all to death getting into to the deep meaning of this hadith, so I won't. Anyway, what I'm trying to say is, when the Prophet mentioned this hadith, he was displaying his deep respect for Fatima (p.b.u.h.), to the point that whoever hurts her, hurts Allah. He didn't say this hadith about a man, but a woman, which means that a woman can have a high status in Islam, not based upon her gender, but based upon her Iman and taqwaa.
Inna akramakum inda Allahi atqaakum " that can be translated as "The best of you in the eyes of Allah is the most pious." Piety has absolutely nothing to do with gender.
It also says in the Quran: Yaa ayyuhal ladhina aamanu ati'u Allaha wa atee'ulrasool.
What does this mean?? It means obey Allah, obey rasool Allah what were the traditions of rasool Allah (p.b.u.h.) concerning women? Take his daughter, Fatimatul Zahra' (p.b.u.h.).
He had utmost respect for her, to the degree that when she walked into a room, he would stand up for her as a show of respect. He would kiss her hand and offer his seat to her--a woman!!
And who was he?? He wasn't just any ordinary man--he was the Prophet of Allah! Rasool Allah! Habib Allah...Standing up for a woman? A young woman?? His daughter?? What does this mean? Think about it. The Prophet (p.b.u.h.&h.h.) possessed great love and deep respect for his daughter.
And his love for Fatima came deep down from his heart. As did his truthful actions and sayings. His attitude towards women wasn't just something he just did or said...to look good...or maybe to get people off his back. No. He meant it.
He meant everything he said. And everything he said was from Allah Wa laa yantiqu an il hawaa. And he does not speak of his own desire. Also, when he showed such great respect for women, he wasn't just doing it for himself. He was also doing it to set an example for others.
Allah mentions in the Quran that prophet Mohammed (p.b.u.h.&h.h.) is an example for everyone. Wa inna lakum fi rasool illahi uswatun hasanatun. And there is a great example for you in rasool Allah. He also praises the conduct of the Prophet (p.b.u.h.&h.h.), saying wa innaka la 'alaa khuluqin adhim. And you are of sublime morals. Now if the Prophet's respect for women was so profound, and we're to take him as an example, shouldn't we be the same way?
Now unfortunately, this is not the way people see things. Just as Islam is so stereotyped in this society, the status of women in Islam is one of the most extremely misunderstood and incorrectly portrayed things in the western world. Why is Islam looked at as a religion that oppresses women so much? Well, think about it. Look at, as a mere example, the movie Not without My Daughter. So many false depictions were made of women in Islamic countries. Plus, in many so-called Islamic countries,
women aren't treated according to their God-given rights. But this isn't the fault of the Islamic Ideology. It's the fault of the misapplication or sometimes even outright denial of the ideologies in these societies. Much of the practices and laws in "Islamic" countries have deviated from, or are totally unrelated to the origins of Islam. Instead, a lot of these practices are based on cultural and traditional customs.
Look at Saudi Arabia. Women aren't even allowed to drive in that country..What kind of rule is that?! Then people go and look at the distorted rules that the government created, and think that that's the way Islam wants governments to be. And what can we tell them? Saudi Arabia is supposed to derive its law from Islamic legislation, but it's all from the Saudi monarchy. Also, in some supposedly Islamic countries, many civil laws that were imposed during European colonization remain. Take Egypt, for example. Many of the civil law that legislates personal and family
matters is directly based on old French law. As a result, an Egyptian man can divorce his wife much, much easier than she can divorce him. Often, laws in Middle Eastern countries, which are legislated by men, only take bits and pieces of Islamic law, and combine them with concocted rules based upon some cultural and foreign practices.
Another common misconception when it comes to equality in Islam is that women aren't treated as well as men because they don't inherit as much money as men do, or that they're looked down upon because they don't receive custody of their children after a divorce. However, if you look beyond the surface level of these laws, you'll see that they're actually very logical, and make a of sense. The reason the man receives custody of his children is because men usually get paid better than women, and can
support their children better. Also, men are usually stronger and stricter when it came to disciplining and laying down the rules for their children. The reason a woman receives one-third of the inheritance that a man does, is because, while men are required to pay for all of the expenses, and support everyone in their families, including their wives, women don't have to pay for anything according to Islamic law. Even if a
women works, she still isn't required to pay for anyone. She can keep the money she has or earns all to herself if she so wishes. Plus, if her husband is the one to pass away, she still receives less inheritance because she isn't expected to pay for her children; her brothers in laws are. Now don't you think it would be unfair of women did receive as much inheritance money as men?
Another reason people don't accept the idea that men and women are equal is because they are under the impression that equality means having the exact same roles or functions. They seem to overlook the fact that women have specific roles, and men have specific roles, and if they're carried out correctly, and we all work together in achieving our particular jobs, we can attain harmony and completeness in life, and only under these conditions will it be possible to have a smooth-running society. The Qur'an revived the rights of woman as a human being and man's partner in humanity and human
rights, but did not overlook her womanhood or man's manhood. In other words, the Qur'an did not overlook woman's nature. Others are under the impression that the only reason women exist is to benefit men. Islam does not say any such thing. It has stated the purpose of Creation in clear terms. It expressly says that the earth, the heavens, the air, the clouds, the plants and the animals, all have been created for the sake of mankind. It does not say that woman has been created for the sake of man. According to it, both man and woman have been created for the sake of each other. The Qur'an says: They (women) are raiment (comfort, embellishment and protection) for you, and you (men) are raiment for them. (Surat al-Baqarah: 2: 187).
In the Quran, no difference is made between the sexes in relation to God. "For men who submit and women who submit, for believing men and believing women, for devout men and devout women, for steadfast men and steadfast women, for humble men and humble women...." Allah doesn't only talk about men, nor does he only talk about women. In the eyes of Allah, we are all equal. So if God, who created us, who gave us life, who provided us with all that we have, sees mankind equally, why can't we?