often fail to distinguish between culture and religion, Two
things that are completely different..
Everybody focuses to Muslim women worldwide as
oppressed, more specifically the Muslim Women of
The media shows us how oppressed the Muslim women are there
and people start linking three words in their minds:
‘Islam,’ ‘women’ and ‘oppression.’ Therefore, they think
that Islam commands oppressing women.
People often fail to distinguish between culture and
religion, two things that are completely different. In fact,
Islam condemns oppression of any kind whether it is towards
a woman or in general.
Now, the Qur'an is the sacred book by which Muslims live.
This book was revealed 14 centuries ago to a man named
Muhammad who would later become the Prophet. Fourteen
centuries have passed and this book has not been changed
since, not one letter has been altered.
In surah number 33, entitled Al-Ahzab (Arabic for 'The
Clans'), on verse 59, it says: “O Prophet, tell your wives
and your daughters and the women of the believers to draw
cloaks all over their bodies. That will be better as they
shall be known (as free respectable women) and will not be
annoyed. And Allah is Ever Oft-Forgiving, Most-Merciful.”
This verse shows that Islam makes wearing a Hijab necessary,
Hijab is the word used for covering, not only the
headscarves (as some people may think) but also wearing
loose clothes that are not too bright.
Sometimes, people see covered Muslim women and they think
oppression. This is wrong. A Muslim woman is not oppressed,
but she is liberated. This is because she is no longer
valued for something material such as her good looks or the
shape of her body. She compels others to judge her for her
intelligence, kindness, honesty and personality. Therefore,
people judge her for who she actually is.
Women cover their hair to be modest. When they wear loose
clothes, they are trying to be modest. In fact, nuns cover
their hair out of modesty. Also, when we see frequent
pictures of the Virgin Mary, she is covering her hair out of
modesty. Therefore, Muslim women are doing the exact same
thing as righteous Christian women.
The lives of the people who accepted the Qur'an changed
drastically. It had a tremendous impact on so many people,
especially women. It was the first time openly declared that
the souls of men and women are equal. They would be bestowed
the same obligation as well as the same rewards.
In addition to being equal to men, women get economic
independence. The money they bring into marriage is theirs
as well as the money they earn. A woman is allowed in Islam
to choose their own husbands and in extreme cases, divorce.
A woman has the right to be educated, contrary to what the
contemporary world might think. The responsibility is of the
person who is raising her.
Now picture this: Fourteen hundred years ago Islam allowed
women to vote for a leader. It was recently, in 1925,
Canadian women became allowed to vote. Worst, in Quebec, the
law became final in 1940. Muslim women got rights before
Western women got any.
Islam is a religion that holds women in high regard. Long
ago, when baby boys were born, they brought great joy to the
family. Girls brought less and occasionally none. Actually,
girls were hated so much that they were sometimes buried
alive. Islam was always against this female infanticide.
The two great roles a woman plays in life are a wife and a
mother. The Prophet once said to a group of men: “The best
among you are those who are the best to their wives.” This
shows that Islam highly encourages the well treating of the
wives. This should be shown love, respect and care.
A man came to the Prophet, sallallahualayhe wa sallam, and
asked: “Who among my kinfolk is worthy of my good
companionship?” The Prophet, sallallahu alavhe wa sallam,
replied: "Your mother" three times before saying: “Your
father.” This indicates the impact that a mother has in a
person's life. So women are highly honored in this great
religion. Islam is a only religion that treats women fairly.
Oppression is condemned. I hope all of you know and remember