. . . . . Hypocrisy Thy Name is . . . . . منافقت . . . . .

آئین جواں مرداں حق گوئی و بے باکی..اللہ کے بندوں کو آتی نہیں روباہی...Humanity is declining by the day because an invisible termite, Hypocrisy منافقت eats away human values instilled in human brain by the Creator. I dedicate my blog to reveal ugly faces of this monster and will try to find ways to guard against it. My blog will be objective and impersonal. Commentors are requested to keep sanctity of my promise.

Thursday, March 30, 2006

My BODY is MY Own Business

I OFTEN wonder whether people see me as a radical, fundamentalist Muslim terrorist packing an AK-47 assault rifle inside my jean jacket. Or may be they see me as the poster girl for oppressed womanhood everywhere. I'm not sure which it is.

I get the whole gamut of strange looks, stares, and covert glances. You see, I wear the hijab,
a scarf that covers my head, neck, and throat. I do this because I am a Muslim woman who believes her body is her own private concern.

Young Muslim women are reclaiming the hijab, reinterpreting it in light of its original purpose
to give back to women ultimate control of their own bodies.

The Qur'aan teaches us that men and women are equal, that individuals should not be judged according to gender, beauty, wealth, or privilege. The only thing that makes one person better than another is her or his character.

Nonetheless, people have a difficult time relating to me. After all, I'm young, Canadian born and raised, university educated why would I do this to myself, they ask.

Strangers speak to me in loud, slow English and often appear to be playing charades. They politely inquire how I like living in Canada and whether or not the cold bothers me. If I'm in
the right mood, it can be very amusing.

But, why would I, a woman with all the advantages of a North American upbringing, suddenly, at 21, want to cover myself so that with the hijab and the other clothes I choose to wear, only my face and hands show?

WOMEN are taught from early childhood that their worth is proportional to their attractiveness. We feel compelled to pursue abstract notions of beauty, half realizing that such a pursuit is futile.

When women reject this form of oppression, they face ridicule and contempt. Whether it's women who refuse to wear makeup or to shave their legs, or to expose their bodies, society, both men and women, have trouble dealing with them.

In the Western world, the hijab has come to symbolize either forced silence or radical, unconscionable militancy. Actually, it's neither. It is simply a woman's assertion that judgment of her physical person is to play no role whatsoever in social interaction.

Wearing the hijab has given me freedom from constant attention to my physical self. Because my appearance is not subjected to public scrutiny, my beauty, or perhaps lack of it, has been removed from the realm of what can legitimately be discussed.

No one knows whether my hair looks as if I just stepped out of a salon, whether or not I can pinch an inch, or even if I have unsightly stretch marks. And because no one knows, no one cares.

Feeling that one has to meet the impossible male standards of beauty is tiring and often humiliating. I should know, I spent my entire teenage years trying to do it. It was a borderline bulimic and spent a lot of money I didn't have on potions and lotions in hopes of becoming the next Cindy Crawford.

The definition of beauty is ever-changing; waifish is good, waifish is bad, athletic is good -- sorry, athletic is bad. Narrow hips? Great. Narrow hips? Too bad.

Women are not going to achieve equality with the right to bear their breasts in public, as
some people would like to have you believe. That would only make us party to our own objectification. True equality will be had only when women don't need to display themselves
to get attention and won't need to defend their decision to keep their bodies to themselves.

(Naheed Mustafa’s article was published in “The Globe and Mail” on June 29, 1993 under “Facts and Arguments” Page A26. She had graduated from the University of Toronto in 1992 with an honours degree in political and history and then she was studying journalism at Ryerson Polytechnic University)

16 Comments:

  • At 11:41 pm, Blogger Subhana said…

    I am going to try avoiding making a comment on hijab - probably I do not share the same opinion as many other Muslims in terms of hijab being compulsory or not.

    Anyhow, one thing I have come to realize is that any sort of covering up has the only point as foundation - ie not to attract lustful attention. Yes, even if a lady only wears a headscarf, its all about what kind of attention you're attracting. Lustful gazes and attraction is what covering up protects you from.

    One paradox that really prevails in the Western society, is funny enough ''freedom''. On one hand they market liberty and freedom constantly, yet when a Muslim woman raises her voice to claim her freedom she is judged and thrown under the category of ''oppressed women''. If women are allowed to wear mini skirts, others should be allowed to wear full sleeves. Extreme paradox.

     
  • At 10:06 am, Blogger iabhopal said…

    Please let it be known that it is not for me and you to say what is compulsory and what not. If we are Muslims, we have to follow Qur’aan and Hadith.

    In accordance with Qur’aan and Hadith, women are required to cover head except face between hair, neck and ears and body excluding hands and feet in such a way that that no profiles are apparent. This can be done even by wrapping a single sheet of cloth over normal clothing. Scholars, taking guide from Hadith, are of the view that young or beautiful woman or when some beautification of face has been done face should also be covered.

    Western men, with a slogan of women freedom, have made women a toy for men to look at and to play with to satisfy their lust. Propaganda of women’s oppression in Islam is due to their inbuilt fear / hate of a principled way of life (Islam).

    By the way which school of thought you follow? I beg pardon if I am asking for too much.

     
  • At 7:42 pm, Blogger comicsans said…

    what opinion do u have on hijab subhana?

     
  • At 7:28 am, Blogger Hypocrisy Thy Name said…

    Subhana

    Please let it be known that it is not for me and you to say what is compulsory and what not. If we are Muslims, we have to follow Qur’aan and Hadith.

    In accordance with Qur’aan and Hadith, women are required to cover head except face between hair, neck and ears and body excluding hands and feet in such a way that no profiles are apparent. This can be done even by wrapping a single sheet of cloth over normal clothing. Scholars, taking guide from Hadith, are of the view that young or beautiful woman or when some beautification of face has been done, face should also be covered.

    Western men, with a slogan of women freedom, have made women a toy for men to look at and to play with to satisfy their lust. Propaganda of women’s oppression in Islam is due to their inbuilt fear / hate of a principled way of life (Islam).

    By the way which school of thought you follow? I beg pardon if I am asking for too much.

     
  • At 11:30 pm, Blogger comicsans said…

    Surah Nisa, Ayat 31: And say to the believing women that they should lower their gaze and guard their modesty; that they should not display their beauty and ornaments except what (must ordinarily) appear thereof; that they should draw their veils over their bosoms and not display their beauty except to their husbands, their fathers, their husband's fathers, their sons, their husbands' sons, their brothers or their brothers' sons, or their sisters' sons, or their women, or the slaves whom their right hands possess, or male servants free of physical needs, or small children who have no sense of the shame of sex; and that they should not strike their feet in order to draw attention to their hidden ornaments. And O ye Believers! turn ye all together towards Allah, that ye may attain Bliss.
    Yes uncle u are right. I have studied the rule of Hijab from both scholars perspective. Scholars who think veil is waajib and scholars who do not consider veil wajib. So both sides can be considred. What is the most important thing is to cover ur hair and not wearing fashionable burqaas and abayaas as well as tight and transparent clothes that exposose a muslim womens body. I have friends who take veil infront of thier cousins and do Shari'ah Hijab. While in dubai I use to take veil but not infront of my relatives. But i used to completely cover my hair and allhumdulillah tried my best to avoid wearing tight clothes.
    if one likes to be more acknowledged about the ruling concerning hijab plz visit this website which contains Sharia'h islamic law.
    http://www.jamiat.org.za/women/concept_of_hijab.htm

     
  • At 1:47 am, Blogger urdudaaN said…

    The article is very well written. Jazak Allah for sharing it with us.
    I am delighted to see Muslim women in media. In India we have a fearless political analyst in Seema Mustafa. We have madam Ghannoushi researching in London. and here we have another jewel.

    Truely, the strength of islam/muslims is by the women followers.

    As for the west, one can not be a believer(even if not a muslim) by following their standards, since they keeps on changing every so often, case by case.

     
  • At 11:40 am, Blogger Hypocrisy Thy Name said…

    Comicsans

    Thank you for the references. Al-hamdoo-lillah, I write after having thoroughly studied Qur'aan Shareef and Hadith.
    Hijab does not mean a type of clothing but the way of covering body properly. Wearing fashionable attractive Jilbab or Scarf may infringe the purpose.

    Urdudaan

    Thank you. Wise women are there but they are also few like wise men.

     
  • At 12:06 am, Blogger comicsans said…

    no one has completely studied the deen yet. We all need to learn and share. May Allah give us the guidance to pratice and preach what is right and most loved in the sight of Allah subhanahu wa' taala

     
  • At 8:02 am, Blogger Hypocrisy Thy Name said…

    Comicsans
    By "No one has completely studied the deem yet" I think you meant the bloggers. Generally yes, but I have noticed that some bloggers do have enough knowledge of Deen though there is no limit to learning.

    Please include me in your prayers. I shall be grateful.

     
  • At 9:11 pm, Blogger comicsans said…

    NO UNCLE. I DONT MEAN BLOGGERS. even today an aalim says that he has to learn more from every aspect. I have heard this saying from scholars like. Dr. Asrar Ahmed, Maulana Yusuf Islahi, & Dr. Farhat Hashmi. Also read in Tafseer -e- Qur'an of Abdul aa'la Mawdudi

     
  • At 9:44 pm, Blogger comicsans said…

    forgot to mention that the Prophet PBUH said, get acnowledged even if u have to travel to China (that time china was considered furthest).During prophets time even the sahabas who were haafiz studied the Qur'an in explanation.
    I am in need of your prayers respected uncle.
    May Allah guide us all ameen

     
  • At 7:19 am, Blogger Hypocrisy Thy Name said…

    Comicsans
    Look dear Bhatiji ! "To study" and "to understand" are two different things. People do study but question is of understanding and satisfaction. Only a fool or ignorant will say that he / she has fully understood. Knowledge of Deen has no boundaries. Knowledge is like a baloon. The more you inflat it, it comes in contact with more air outside. I hope that I made myself clear.

    I have read Maulana Maududi, Dr Israr Ahmed and Dr Farhat Hashmi but not Mr Yusuf Islahi, in stead, I have read Amin Ahsan Islahi and Dr Ghulam Murtaza Malik. None of them claims to have full knowledge of Islam. No knowledge-seeking person will ever be satisfied otherwise he will start stagnating.

     
  • At 8:20 am, Blogger comicsans said…

    i am not good in expressing myself in words. You voiced my thoughts. Jazakh Allah uncle. It was a very humble explanation :)

     
  • At 10:45 am, Blogger Hypocrisy Thy Name said…

    Comicsans

    You are welcome

     
  • At 3:18 am, Anonymous ms. leslie of Ferntucky said…

    I really enjoyed reading that article by Mustafa and the comments following it.

    I am from the United States and living in a very small town. I am afraid that if I were to wear the Hajib I would be chased out of the town at a time when we cannot quite move away.

    I would love to wear the Hajib...but I am afraid to.

    Another thing....it is true. Women in the United States are slaves to Wall STreet Marketing. Plastic surgery, designer clothes, gyms are the normal way here. That is not freedom. It is true that men will open a door for women with bigger breasts than they will for women with smaller breasts. Everything here is based on youth and beauty. If you have those, than you will go far. It is not necessary for you to have intelligence. If you do not have beauty or your youth, then you must rely on your intelligence to survive. Women are enslaved and humiliated. I have known beautiful women who were so neurotic from having to be on such strict diets and such that they were acting crazy and needed medication. Their body chemistries were thrown off.

    I may love to go run a mile and I cannot do that in Hajib....but I run that mile for health purposes and not for slimming down for a man.

    What I also like about the Hajib is that it protects the body. Protects the body from sun damage and what not....and that slows down the aging process. It may keep lustful gazes down for the young....it keeps discrimination down for the older.

     
  • At 5:03 pm, Blogger Hypocrisy Thy Name said…

    MS Leslie of Ferntucky

    The requirement is to cover body in such a way that no prfiles and other attractive parts are apparent

     

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